Shrinking back from what fear discloses, from what is threatening, is founded upon fear and has the character of flight. Our interpretation of fear as attunement showed that what we fear is always a detrimental innerwordly being, approaching nearby from a definite region, which may remain absent. In falling prey, Dasein turns away from itself. What 'it shrinks back from must have a threatening character; yet this being has the same kind of being as the one which shrinks back from it-it is Dasein itself. What it shrinks back from cannot be grasped as something "fearsome"; because anything fearsome is always encountered as [186] an innerworldly being. The only threat which can be "fearsome," and which is discovered in fear, always comes from innerworldly beings.

The turning away of falling prey is thus not a flight which is based on a fear of innerworldly beings. 'Any flight based on that kind of fear belongs still less to turning away, as turning away precisely turns toward innerworldly beings while absorbing itself in them. The turning away of falling prey is rather based on anxieh;, which in tum first makes fear possible.

In order to understand this talk about the entangled flight of Dasein from itself, we must recall that being-in-the-world is the basic constitution of Dasein. That about which one has anxiety is being-in-the-world as such. How is what anxiety is anxious about phenomenally differentiated from what fear is afraid of? What anxiety is about is not an innerworldly being. Thus it essentially cannot have any relevance [Bewandtnis]. The threat does not have the character of a definite harmfulness which concerns what is threatened with a definite regard to a particular factical potentiality for being. What anxiety is about is completely indefinite. This indefiniteness not only leaves factically undecided which innerworldly being is threatening, it also means that innerworldly beings in general are not "relevant" ["relevant"]. Nothing which is at hand and present within the world functions as that which anxiety is anxious about. The totality of relevance discovered within the world of things at hand and objectively present is completely without importance [ohne Belang]. It collapses into itself. The world has the character· of complete insignificance [Unbedeutsamkeit]. In anxiety we do not encounter this or that thing which, as threatening, could be relevant.

Thus neither does anxiety "see" a definite "there" and "over here" from which what is threatening approaches. The fact that what is threatening is nowhere characterizes what anxiety is about. Anxiety "does not know" what it is anxious about. But "nowhere" does not mean nothing; rather, region in general lies therein, and disclosedness of the world in general for essentially spatial being-in. Therefore, what is threatening cannot come closer from a definite direction within nearness, it is already "there"—and yet nowhere. It is so near that it is oppressive and takes away one's breath—and yet it is nowhere.

Martin Heidegger (GA 2) Being & Time (S&S) page 180