19 INT. II
Being and Time

is stated propositionally, especially when it is transmitted as a freefloating result, so that we merely take notice of a "standpoint" which perhaps deviates from the way the matter has been previously treated. Whether the answer is "novel" is of no importance and remains extrinsic. What is positive about the answer must lie in the fact.that it is old enough to enable us to learn to comprehend the possibilities prepared by the "ancients." In conformity to its most proper sense, the answer provides a directive for concrete·ontological research, that is, a directive to begin its investigative inquiry within the horizon exhibited—and that is all it provides.

If the answer to the question of being thus becomes the guiding directive for research, then it is sufficiently given only if the specific mode of being of previous ontology—the vicissitudes of its questioning, its findings, and its failures—becomes visible as necessary to the very character of Dasein.


§ 6. The Task of a Destruction of the History of Ontology


All research—especially when it moves in the sphere of the central question of being-is an ontic possibility of Dasein. The being of Dasein finds its meaning in temporality. But temporality is at the same time the condition of the possibility of historicity as a temporal mode of being of Dasein itself, regardless of whether and how it is a being "in time." As a determination, historicity is prior to what is called history (world-historical occurrences). Historicity means the constitution [20] of being of the "occurrence" of Dasein as such; upon its ground something like "world history," and belonging historically to world history, is possible. In its factical being Dasein always is how and "what" it already was. Whether explicitly or not, it is its past. It is its own past not only in such a way that its past, as it were, pushes itself along "behind" it, and that it possesses what is past as a property that is still objectively present and at times has an effect on it. Dasein "is" its past in the manner of its being which, roughly expressed, on each occasion "occurs" out of its future. In its manner of existing at any given ti.me, and thus also with the understanding of being that belongs to it, Dasein grows into a customary interpretation of itself and grows up on that interpretation. It understands itself initially in terms of this interpretation and, within a certain range, constantly does so. This understanding discloses the possibilities of its being and regulates them. Its own past—and that always means that of its "generation"—does not follow after Dasein but rather always already goes ahead of it.

This elemental historicity of Dasein can remain concealed from it. But it can also be discovered in a certain way and be properly cultivated. Dasein can discover, preserve, and explicitly pursue tradition.


Martin Heidegger (GA 2) Being & Time (S&S)