always and is (always) and will be (always): (namely) fire perpetually emerging, the expanses (clearings) igniting themselves, the expanses extinguishing (occluding) themselves (into the clearingless).

Here κόσμος is named in an exemplary sense as that adornment whose adorning, whose lightening jointure, unfolds in everything that is adorned. The one singular originary adornment is to be distinguished here from everything adorned. By ‘everything adorned’ we mean the conjoined that is in each case brought into appearance by intrusively ‘establishing’ itself into appearance and semblance (i.e., ἁρμονία φανερή), in distinction to the inconspicuous jointure (i.e., ἁρμονία ἀφανής). In comparison to the latter, every appearing, apparent, and present conjoinedness of beings as a whole is merely something protruding into the foreground, by which the pure jointure is covered over and is thus, in a way, distorted through the rigidified conjoinedness. The intrusive semblance may still captivate and enchant our understanding. The adorned may therefore be what is most beautiful, which is mentioned in fragment 124 (which we number as ninth) and which we connect to fragment 30:

ὅκωσπερ σάρμα εἰκῆ κεχυμένων ὁ κάλλιστος κόσμος.

Just as a heap of randomly poured-out things is (yet) the most beautiful adornment.

[166] When we consider the merely appearing adornment directly, our consideration is constrained to it, and we never become aware of the singular adornment. The latter does not let itself be removed from the adornment that is given. It is beheld only when we look toward the inconspicuous jointure. Regarding the inceptual adornment, Heraclitus says that it is neither made nor produced by a god nor by a human being. φύσις is above gods and human beings. Every metaphysical consideration, which likes to base itself upon God as the first cause or on the human being as the center of all objectivity, fails when it attempts to think what is dispatched to thinking in this saying. Before all beings, and before every genesis of beings from beings, being itself unfolds. It is not made, and therefore has no determinate beginning in time and no corresponding end to its duration. The one singular κόσμος that is thought in essential thinking—i.e., the inceptual adornment—is so different from the modernly conceived or popularly imagined ‘cosmos’ that we are unable to articulate any adequate measure for this difference. What is here called ‘cosmos’ is not some vague burbling of mists and forces out of which gods and human beings ‘evolve.’ Resistance to this conception is necessary, for it represents the unspoken and unreflective understanding still held by most people today. If God was designated by biology as a ‘gaseous vertebrate’ during the preceding century, then such a designation is at least an honest

The essence of φύσις    125

Heraclitus (GA 55) by Martin Heidegger