animal's behaviour fundamentally as a self-comportment toward beings as such. Yet that is precisely what is impossible. However this also implies that animals do not comport themselves indifferently with respect to beings either. For such indifference would also represent a relation to beings as such. But if behaviour is not a relation to beings, does this mean that it is a relation to nothing? Not at all. Yet if it is not a relation to nothing, it must always be a relation to something, which surely must itself be and actually is. Certainly, but the question is whether behaviour is not precisely a kind of relation to . . . in which that to which the behaviour relates in the manner of not attending to it is open in a certain way for the animal. But this certainly does not mean manifest as a being. There is no indication that the animal somehow does or ever could comport itself toward beings as such. Yet it is certainly true that the animal does announce itself as something that relates to other things, and does so in such a way that it is somehow affected by these other things. I emphasize this point precisely because this relation to . . . which is involved in animal behaviour, even though it essentially lacks the manifestness of beings, has either been quite overlooked in previous attempts to define the concept of the organism and the essence of the animal in general, or has merely been inserted as an afterthought. The possibility of providing an adequate definition of the organism as such depends upon the possibility of grasping this fundamental character of behaviour in an adequate fashion. If it is the case that the animal does not comport itself toward beings as such, then behaviour involves no letting-be of beings as such—none at all and in no way whatsoever, not even any not letting-be. But in that case the inevitably misleading term for the fundamental character of behaviour, namely as elimination [Be-seitigen], must be taken in a quite fundamental sense. Behaviour is eliminative, i.e., it is certainly a relating to . . . but it is so in such a way that beings can never, and essentially never, manifest themselves as beings. It is only through this interpretation that we can discover the essence of behaviour and captivation. Yet behaviour is not blind either, in the sense in which we might want to say that beings are certainly there for the animal even though it cannot grasp them because it is not endowed with reason and does not think.
b) Animal behaviour as encircled by a disinhibiting ring.
Now if something resembling a surrounding environment is open for the animal and its behaviour, we must now ask whether it is possible to clarify this any further.
Instinctual and subservient capability for . . . , the totality of its self-absorbed capability, is an interrelated drivenness of the instinctual drives which encircles the animal. It does so in such a way that it is precisely this encirclement which makes possible the behaviour in which the animal is related to other things.