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Country Path Conversations [129–130]

Guide: We are bewitched by what is actual [vom Wirklichen] and its effects [Wirkungen].

Scholar: Thus we deviate from the path on which we experience the jug as thing.

Guide: Or perhaps we have not yet succeeded in even getting on this path.

Scientist: Then we would probably do well to go back along the way to the thing-essence of the jug which we have attempted to take up till now, and pay attention to the point at which we looked out into the horizon of outward looks and manufacturing.

Scholar: We started by examining the jug as container.

Scientist: The jug is in itself what contains. And that in it which contains are the sides and bottom, the formed earth.

Scholar: After all that we have said about the regioning of the openregion, the clarification of the thing-essence of the jug must evidently start with that of the container which contains [Fassenden des Gefäßes], consisting in itself and standing there. We talked of how the open-region brings each thing to abide in the expanse of resting in the return to itself.

Scientist: We may not let out of our sight what contains [Das Fassende] of the jug that consists in itself as container [Gefäß].

Guide: If we have ever had it in our sight at all. [130]

Scholar: But we did speak constantly of sides and bottom, even if at the outset in view of manufacturing. We can now disregard manufacturing, since it is the completed jug standing there that is first the jug-thing.

Guide: But are sides and bottom, this formed bit of earth, that of the jug which holds?

Scientist: Why would they not be this?

Guide: When we fill the jug with wine, do we pour the wine into the sides and into the bottom of the jug?

Scholar: No, rather into the jug.

Guide: We fill an empty jug and can never fill a full jug, even though there are sides and a bottom standing there in it.

Scientist: You are noting something obvious.

Guide: Not to say something trivial.

Scholar: And yet you indicate something astonishing about the jug.

Guide: If such was indicated, the jug said this to us. Now what do you find astonishing?

Scholar: That the emptiness between the sides and bottom and rim is evidently that of the container which contains.

Guide: But if this is how matters stand, then the jug, as the container standing there in itself, consists not in that out of which it consists, the formed bit of earth, but rather in its emptiness.

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