Lecture IV [132–33]

would be too hasty to conclude that therefore what is thought would be unspeakable. Rather, Plato knew that it would be the task of thinking to bring the unsaid near to thinking by means of a saying, and to bring it near precisely as the issue that is to be thought. Thus even in what is written by him, what Plato thought is never there to be read directly, even though there are written conversations, but because we too greedily and erroneously search for a doctrine we are only rarely able to release these conversations into the pure movement of a concentrated thinking.

It is now necessary to link this meditation to the second lecture. At its beginning was said: “In some way we all think and nevertheless are all inexperienced with the issue of whether and how grounding-principles move thinking or even bring it to rest.” This remark understood the word “grounding-principles” already in the transformed sense of leaps into the abyss; “move thinking”—this means to build a path for thinking; “bring to a rest”—this means to bring to where all movement is first gathered, not in order to end, but rather to begin from the source. Indeed we are—all of us—inexperienced in what is demanded of thinking, if it should otherwise find a way out of its ensnarement in calculation and dialectic. Both of these, calculative and dialectical thinking, are at ground the same, namely in terms of that ground that the principle of reason [Satz vom Grund] names, without however thinking its essence. Yet enough is already gained if our focus turns to the inexperience just mentioned. The path of these lectures may bring us to this.

The second lecture named the signpost. Upon it was to be read “logic.” The doctrine of thinking is called such. If we read the signpost carefully enough it leads us far from all that we would expect. At first we followed the signpost without attending more closely to what was characteristic of the indicated path. To be sure, it must have been obvious that we lost ourselves, or so it seemed, in refining the significance of the equivocality in the title “Basic Principles of Thinking.” In fact, refining the significance of the title is the sole task. Admittedly, we must obviate the misunderstanding that believes it would just be a matter of showing the ways in which the different meanings of the words composing the title could be understood. Behind the equivocality of the title “Basic Principles

Martin Heidegger (GA 79) Bremen and Freiburg Lectures