Four Seminars [103–104]

itself. It then concerns an interpretation of being of the sort given by metaphysics.

Within this second emphasis, however, a third has its place, where the stress is now decisively placed upon the letting itself, that which allows the presencing. Since it allows (releases?) presencing, which means that it allows being, this third emphasis points to the ἐποχή of being. In this third meaning, one stands before being as being, and no longer before one of the forms of its destiny.

If the emphasis is: to let presencing, there is no longer room for the very name of being. Letting is then the pure giving, which itself refers to the it [das Es] that gives, which is understood as Ereignis.

After the seminar reached this point, it attempted to make the word Ereignis understandable.

The first remark makes clear that the French word avènement [advent] is entirely inadequate for translating Ereignis. The French translation proposed for “Time and Being” is again adopted; Ereignis: the appropriement [enowning].

It is then asked: what relation does enowning have to ontological difference? How is enowning to be said? How does it fit into the history of being? Is being supposed to be the countenance of enowning for the Greeks? Finally, is it possible to say: “Being is enowned through enowning” [“Sein ist durch das Ereignis ereignet”]? Answer: yes.

In order to take a few small steps into these difficult questions (which remain all too difficult as long as their understanding is not sufficiently prepared), let us first consider a few indications that could help us discern various and yet convergent paths of access to the question of enowning.

– The most appropriate text for a clarification of this question is the lecture “The Principle of Identity,” which is even better heard than read.99

– An excellent way of approaching enowning would be to look into the essence of positionality [Ge-stell], insofar as it is a passage from metaphysics to another thinking (“a Janus head” it is called in On Time and Being100), for positionality is essentially ambiguous. “The Principle of Identity” already says: positionality (the gathering unity of all ways of positing [Weisen des stellens]) is the completion and consummation of metaphysics and at the same time the disclosive preparation of enowning. This is why it is by no means a question of viewing the advent of technology as negative occurrence (but just as little as a positive occurrence in the sense of a paradise on Earth).

– Positionality is, as it were, the photographic negative of enowning.

– Thinking enowning with the concepts of being and the history of being will not be successful; nor will it be with the assistance of the Greek (which is precisely something “to go beyond”). With being, the

99 Alluding to the 33 1⁄3 rpm LP, Pfullingen: Günther Neske Verlag, 1957. TN: The recorded text is now available on compact disc: Martin Heidegger, Der Satz der Identität, rec. 27 June, 1957, CD (Stuttgart: Verlag Günther Neske, 1997).

100 Martin Heidegger, Zur Sache des Denkens, p. 57/On Time and Being, p. 53.