this is something that holds true also for all future cases of the same. The mere command of language usage and the consultation of dictionaries do not suffice to enable us to follow this path. What more is required cannot be extensively discussed here. But he who attentively [195] thinks along with us will one day notice and recognize that we are not just skimming off random meanings of mere words in order to then construct a philosophy and declare that the insight gained into the matter through the word is exhaustive and sufficient. What is a word without the connection to what it names and to what comes to presence in the word? We must avoid all empty and coincidental etymologies, for they degenerate into frivolous play if what is named by the word is not first thought and continually reconsidered, slowly and at length, and continually examined and reexamined in its word essence.


1) The intimate connection between thinking and things. Logic, pure thinking, and reflection

‘Logic’ is the term for ‘the doctrine of correct thinking.’ It represents the inner structure of thinking, its form, and its rules. ‘To practice logic’ thus means: to learn to think correctly. When is thinking correct? Apparently when it unfolds in accordance with the forms and rules established by logic, thereby corresponding to ‘logic.’ Thinking is correct when it is ‘logical.’ One says that this or that thing is ‘completely logical,’ but by that one does not make reference to a thought process and its validity, but rather to a situation (a process or state of affairs) that has arisen with consistency from out of a given set of circumstances. This ‘consistency’ consists of the proper course of events belonging to the circumstances obtaining to the matter. Accordingly, what is ‘logical,’ what is ‘consistent,’ and generally what is correct lie not in our thinking, but rather in things. We speak of an inner ‘logic of a thing.’ Therefore, we are only thinking logically, i.e., correctly, when we think ‘factually’ from out of and with regard to the matters themselves. But how can our thinking be ‘factual’ if it does not involve itself [196] with matters and attend to their minutiae? Thus, the correctness of thinking is once again dependent upon our thinking and the proper involvement of thinking with things. Therefore, there exists a two-fold ‘logic’: a logic of thinking that states how thinking properly follows and pursues things, and a logic of things that shows how and in what sense things have their own, internal consistency. Things do not appeal to or address

The term 'logic'    149

Heraclitus (GA 55) by Martin Heidegger