Insight Into That Which Is [70–71]

every time what occurs is already something destinal from a dispensation of beyng.

For the conversion of the essence of technology, the human is nevertheless needed; but the human is here needed in his essence, as it corresponds to this conversion. Accordingly, the essence of the human must first open itself to the essence of technology, which is an entirely different event than the process by which humans affirm and further technology and its means. But in order that the human essence would become attentive to the essence of technology, in order that an essential relationship would be founded between technology and the human in respect to their essences, the modern human must first of all find his way back into the breadth of his essential space. The dimension that joins together this essential space of the human essence is only received through that relationship by which the guardianship of beyng itself is brought into the ownership of the human essence as what is needed by it. Apart from first cultivating himself within this essential space and taking up a dwelling therein, the human is not capable of anything essential within the dispensation now reigning. In considering this, we attend to a saying of Meister Eckhart and think it from its ground. It runs: “Those who are not of great essence, whatever work they effect, nothing will come of it.”1

The great essence of the human lies in its belonging to the essence of being. It is needed by the essence of being so as to guard it in its truth. For this it is above all necessary that we first consider the essence of being as thought-worthy, first experience such thinking, and that by such an experience first trace a path and make our way into the hitherto impassable.

We are capable of all this only if, in regards to what seems to be the question that is always closest and solely urgent—what are we to do?—we first and only consider this: How must we

1. Meister Eckhart, Meister Eckharts Reden der Unterscheidung, no. 4, ed. Ernst Diederichs, anastatic reprint of the 1913 edition (Bonn: A. Marcus und E. Weber Verlag, 1925), 8–9, 8. Meister Eckhart, “Reden der Unterscheidung,” no. 4, in Die deutschen Werke, vol. 5: Meister Eckharts Traktate, ed. and trans. Josef Quint (Stuttgart: Kohlhammer, 1963), 196–98, 198. English translation: “Those in whom being is but slight, whatever deeds they do amount to nothing,” from “The Talks of Instruction,” no. 4, in Eckhart, Complete Mystical Works, 489, 489.

Martin Heidegger (GA 79) The Turn - Bremen and Freiburg Lectures

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