Moira (Parmenides VIII, 34-41)


The construction of the passage τὸ γὰρ αὐτό νοεῖν ἐστίν τε καὶ εἶναι, grammatically represented, now shows itself in a different light. The enigmatic key word, τὸ αὐτό, the Same, with which the saying begins, is no longer a predicate repositioned to stand first, but rather the subject—what lies at the core, what supports and maintains. The inconspicuous ἐστίν, "is," now means "comes to presence," "endures," and further, the bestowal of what endures. As such, τὸ αὐτό, the Same reigns. Specifically, it reigns as the unfolding of the twofold—an unfolding in the sense of disclosure. That which unfolds, and in unfolding reveals the twofold, allows taking-heed-of to get under way toward the gathering perception of the presencing of what is present. Truth, characterized as the disclosure of the duality, lets thinking, from out of this duality, belong to Being. What is silently concealed in the enigmatic key word τὸ αὐτό is the revealing bestowal of the belonging-together of the duality and the thinking that comes forward into view within it.


V


Thus thinking does not belong together with Being because it is also something present and therefore to be counted in the totality of presencing—which means here the whole of what is present. Admittedly, it seems as though Parmenides represents the connection between thinking and Being in just this fashion. But he offers some justification, tacking it on by means of a γάρ (for). His explanation states (VIII, 36 ff.), πάρεξ τοῦ ἐόντος: outside of beings there was, is, and will be nothing else in being (following Bergk's conjecture, οὐδ' ἦν). However, τὸ ἐόν does not say "beings," but rather names the duality. Naturally there is never a presencing of what is present outside it, since presencing as such is grounded in, appears in, and shines out of the unfolded light of the twofold.

But why does Parmenides expressly append this explanation with regard to the relation of thinking to Being? Because the name νοεῖν, "thinking," in not sounding the same as εἶναι, gives the appearance of actually being an ἄλλο, something different, something set opposite Being and therefore apart from it. But not only does the pronunciation of the name appear to maintain itself "alongside" and "apart from" ἐόν, but also what the name names.


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