425 II. 5
Being and Time

related to Dasein's totality, possesses a genuinely unequivocal character ontologically. It may be that as regards Being-towards-the-end the question [373] itself may even have found its answer. But death is only the 'end' of Dasein; and, taken formally, it is just one of the ends by which Dasein's totality is closed round. The other 'end', however, is the 'beginning', the 'birth'. Only that entity which is 'between' birth and death presents the whole which we have been seeking. Accordingly the orientation of our analytic has so far remained 'one-sided', in spite of all its tendencies towards a consideration of existent Being-a-whole and in spite of the genuineness with which authentic and inauthentic Being-towards-death have been explicated. Dasein has been our theme only in the way in which it exists 'facing forward', as it were, leaving 'behind it' all that has been. Not only has Being-towards-the-beginning remained unnoticed ; but so too, and above all, has the way in which Dasein stretches along between birth and death. The 'connectedness of life', in which Dasein somehow maintains itself constantly, is precisely what we have overlooked in our analysis of Being-a-whole.

We have regarded temporality as the meaning of the Being of Dasein's totality; must we not now take this back, even if what we have described as the 'connectedness' between birth and death is ontologically quite obscure? Or does temporality, as we have exhibited it, first of all give us the basis on which to provide an unequivocal direction for the existential-ontological question of this 'connectedness'? In the field of these investigations, it is perhaps already a gain, when we learn not to take problems too lightly.

What seems 'simpler' than to characterize the 'connectedness of life' between birth and death? It consists of a sequence of Experiences 'in time'. But if one makes a more penetrating study of this way of characterizing the 'connectedness' in question, and especially of the ontological assumptions behind it, the remarkable upshot is that, in this sequence of Experiences, what is 'really' 'actual' is, in each case, just that Experience which is present-at-hand 'in the current "now" ', while those Experiences which have passed away or are only coming along, either are no longer or are not yet 'actual'. Dasein traverses the span of time granted to it between the two boundaries, and it does so in such a way that, in each case, it is 'actual' only in the "now", and hops, as it were, through the sequence of "nows" of its own 'time'. Thus it is said that Dasein is 'temporal'. In spite of the constant changing of these Experiences, the Self maintains itself throughout with a certain selfsameness. Opinions diverge as to how that which thus persists is to be defined, and how one is to determine what relation it may possibly have to the changing Experiences.