Fundamental Concepts of Metaphysics [436-38]

(and consequently 'set down'). Statement in this second sense has more to do with statutory expressions of rules and regulations, although a logical statement of principle is naturally different from the statutory rules of a club.

In the first group, in speaking and setting forth questions, commands, and assertions, we have to do with various ways of proposing something. In the second group we are only concerned with what has been proposed, with the propositional content and its character in the context of the total content that is expounded. If we recall Spinoza's principal work The Ethics, for example, then we are confronted by a quite particular concatenation of propositional statements. If we say that we are only concerned with what has been proposed, this does not mean that a certain way of proposing does not also belong to statements of principle, to statements of inference, or to auxiliary statements. For all these statements are, in accordance with their general character, propositional statements, and therefore belong to the first class. On the other hand, the kinds of statements that belong to the first group—as ways in which modes of human comportment toward something proposed is expressed—also possess a content, although the content of statements of wish, imperative statements, and interrogative statements is difficult to grasp in its structure. For what is wished for in a statement of wish is not the content of such a statement. In a statement of wish I do not express myself about what is wished, but express myself rather as one who wishes what is wished. But this moment of expressing oneself on the part of the speaker also lies within every propositional statement, although in the course of everyday discourse, where we attend in advance to whatever is said, we allow this moment to recede completely.

Under the term 'statement' we make a twofold distinction: [1.] the statement as a way of proposing something; [2.] the statement as that which is proposed. However inadequate this distinction is with respect to a thematic examination of the problem of the statement, it will initially suffice as a pointer for our problem. If we now select for examination a particular form of statement, the simple propositional statement, we do not do so because this form of statement has played an exemplary role in the philosophical theory of propositions from the beginning. Rather we do so for reasons which precisely led to the fact that it is this form of statement which has decisively determined the doctrine of discourse in general, of the λόγος (logic). What are these reasons? We are already familiar with them. The fundamental trait of everyday Dasein is that undifferentiated comportment toward beings precisely as something present at hand. The corresponding form of discourse in which such comportment at first and for the most part expresses itself—whether in conversation, in narration, in reporting, in proclamation, or in scientific discussion—is this undifferentiated habitual form of assertion: 'a is b'. This λόγος determines the philosophical theory of the λόγος or logic, because the λόγος first impresses itself upon us in this form, indeed as something that is also present at hand

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