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IV. The Leap [256-257]

(If beyng can never be determined as the "most general," the "emptiest," and the "most abstract," since it is inaccessible to any representation, then it also, and indeed for the same reason, cannot be grasped as the "most concrete" and even less as the combination of these two interpretations, each of which is insufficient in itself.)

The reciprocal availability is disposed in Dasein in the basic disposition of restraint, and what is disposing is the event. Yet if we interpret disposition in terms of our notion of "feeling," then it will readily be said that being is now placed in relation to "feeling" instead of "thinking." But how impulsive and superficial is our understanding of "feelings" as "faculties" and "phenomena" of a "soul." How far are we standing from the essence of disposition, i.e., how far from Da-sein.

If it is still allowed, for the sake of a preliminary orientation, to characterize beyng on the basis of "beings," then we will call upon the actual as what genuinely is. We know the actual as the present, the constant.

In the other beginning, however, beings are never the actual in this sense of "presence." Such presence, even where it is encountered as constancy, is for the originary projection of the truth of beyng the most ephemeral.

What is actual, i.e., what is, is first that which is remembered and that which is still the prepared. Memory and preparedness open the temporal-spatial playing field of beyng in which thinking must renounce the "presence" that previously was the one and only determination. (Because it is here that the most proximate domain lies for the decision regarding the truth of beyng, the initiation of the leap to the other beginning had to be attempted as "Being and Time.") Yet one might want to retain the ordinary conception of time (predominant since Aristotle-Plato), leave the νῦν ["now"] its privilege, and derive the past and future as modifications of the νῦν, especially because memory can remember only out of and in calling upon something present and something that has been present and because what is in the future has but one destiny, namely, to become something present.

Although what is present is never the negative and participates in the grounding of memory and preparedness, yet all this is so only if the presencing of what in each case is present has already been borne and pervasively disposed by memory and preparedness. Only from the intimacy of these can the present gleam forth. In original experience, the present cannot be reckoned according to its ephemeralness but only according to its uniqueness. This latter is the new and essential content of the constancy and presencing that are to be determined on the basis of memory and preparedness.


Contributions to Philosophy (of the Event) (GA 65) by Martin Heidegger