§159 [281-282]

159. The fissure and the "modalities"16

The origin and dominance of the "modalities" are even more questionworthy than the interpretation of beings in terms of ἰδέα, specifically in the way this interpretation has entrenched itself in the course of the history of philosophy and has become, so to speak, a "stockpile of problems," ones objectively present in themselves.

For this provenance, what is important is the priority of "actuality" (cf. also existentia as what preeminently stands in distinction to essentia): actuality as ἐνέργεια, with possibility and necessity as—so to speak—its two horns.

Yet ἐνέργεια is genuinely grasped out of the undeveloped φύσις that is analyzed as beingness in the light of μεταβολή. Why μεταβολή? Because, for the anticipatory retention of constancy and presence, μεταβολή (preeminently as φορά) is the counter-appearance as such and thereby is that which allows, out of itself interpreted as an other, a coming back to οὐσία. Here lies the core of Aristotle's "ontology."

159. The fissure

One essential fissure is being in its bending back (a capacity, but not as possibility, which has always been thought hitherto in terms of beings as objectively present).

To split open this fissure and thus unitarily gaping open as mastery, protruding origin. Mastery is—or, to put it better, essentially occurs as—bequest; it is not bequeathed itself, but bequeaths the constant originariness. Wherever beings are transformed out of beyng, i.e., are supposed to be grounded, mastery is necessary.

Mastery is the necessity of what is free toward what is free. Mastery is exercised, and essentially occurs, as the unconditionality in the domain of freedom, and its greatness consists in the fact that it needs no power and thus no violence. Yet it remains more effective than these, although in its own particular type of constancy (the continuity, with apparently long interruptions, of the self-related moments).

Power—the capacity of securing a possession of violent possibilities. As a securing, power is always related to a counter-power and for that reason is never an origin.

16. Cf. Lecture course, Die Frage nach dem Ding: Zu Kants Lehre von den transzendentalen Grundsätzen, winter semester 1935-36 (GA41).