Fundamental Concepts of Metaphysics [460-62]

that takes together. Yet not only that. Rather this taking together is in itself a taking apart. We find not only this dual structure, however, but something else as well: Relating as an action, an activity, an occurrence, is one of νοήματα, a νοεῖν, an apprehending (νοῦς), an apprehending taking together and taking apart. This entails that whatever is taken apart is apprehended as such in its togetherness as such. 'a is b'. Let us take another concrete example: This board is badly positioned: the board in its bad position, the board as such and in itself, what it is and how it is. Here we must note that we do not first think of the bad position and then add it to the board, thus subsequently uniting it with the board: the reverse is the case. The board is initially taken in this unity, and on the basis of and with respect to this unity it is then taken apart—yet in such a way that the unity not only remains, but precisely makes itself known. σύνθεσις as taking together means: taking with respect to an originary together that already exists and continues to do so (a peculiar kind of unity-forming). Aristotle states:14 πῶς δὲ τὸ ἅμα ἢ τὸ χωρὶς νοεῖν συμβαίνει, ἄλλος λόγος, λέγω δὲ τὸ ἅμα καὶ τὸ χωρὶς ὥστε μὴ τὸ ἐφεξῆς ἀλλ᾽ ἕν τι γίγνεσθαι: The way in which this νοεῖν occurs, however, which is in an 'at once' and at the same time in a 'separated', i.e., in a taking together and simultaneous taking apart, is the subject of another inquiry; I speak here of an apprehending in an 'at once' and at the same time in a 'separated' in order to show that things do not happen consecutively in this νοεῖν, first the taking together and then the taking apart, but that through this unitary structure a unity emerges. We can therefore say that reason is by its essence unity-forming. Aristotle tells us this in De Anima: τὸ δὲ ἓν ποιοῦν, τοῦτο ὁ νοῦς ἕκαστον:15 The forming of One and of unity in general is in each case the intrinsic task of reason. You can immediately see how far-reaching this whole problem is if I point to the fact that the ἓν is an essential determination of being in general. Where we have the ἓν, there we also find the ὄν. For this reason we already have here a fundamental clue to the question of being.

Yet what is it that is apprehended in this apprehending that takes together and takes apart? What is the fundamental character of whatever is apprehended and capable of being apprehended as such and in general? We are not to guess the answer to this question, but must catch sight of it from out of the inner structure of the λόγος ἀποφαντικός, namely ἀπόφανσις. The λόγος ἀποφαντικός has two fundamental forms, which Aristotle presents concisely at the beginning of Chapter 6 of De Interpretatione in the following way: κατάφασις δέ ἐστιν ἀπόφανσις τινὸς κατὰ τινός, ἀπόφασις δέ ἐστιν ἀπόφανσις τινὸς ἀπὸ τινός. ἐπεὶ δὲ ἔστι καὶ τὸ ὑπάρχον ἀποφαίνεσθαι ὡς μὴ ὑπάρχον καὶ τὸ μὴ ὑπάρχον ὡς ὑπάρχον καὶ τὸ ὑπάρχον ὡς ὑπάρχον

14. Ibid., E4, 1027b 23ff.

15. Aristotelis De anima, ibid., Γ6, 430b 5f.

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