which the human holds fast to beings, and thereby holds himself, keeps himself, and allows himself to be held. The understanding of ἦθος, the knowledge of it, is ‘ethics.’ Here we take this word in a very broad and essential sense. The conventional meaning of ‘ethics’ as a moral doctrine, a theory of virtue, or even a doctrine of values, is only a consequence, mutation, and aberration of the concealed, original meaning. Moreover, whereas ‘physics’ thinks about beings as a whole, ‘ethics’ only regards one being—namely, the human—set apart from the others. However, the human is here not regarded as a separate solitary being, cut off from beings as a whole, but rather precisely in view of the fact that he, and he alone, abides in beings as a whole, relates to them, and thereby consummates and maintains this relation from either a particular grounding or groundlessness. τὸ ἦθος is the comportment of the human’s sojourn in the midst of beings as a whole. In this sense, even the knowledge of ‘ethics,’ although surely in a different way and approach, is oriented toward beings as a whole: in this case, the human is in one respect the center, though in another respect, not. Hidden within these connections is the essence that is both proper to, and characteristic of, the human, an essence which we could call ‘eccentric.’ The human is, dwelling in the midst of beings as a whole, without, however, being its center in the sense of a ground that mediates and upholds it. The human is in the center of beings but is not that center itself. ἐπιστήμη φυσική and ἐπιστήμη ἠθική are an understanding of beings as a whole, a whole which shows itself to the human, and to which the human relates by holding himself to it and sojourning in it.

From these short references to ‘physics’ and ‘ethics’ we may surmise that now the aforementioned [207] ‘logic,’ the ἐπιστήμη λογική, in some sense also connects to beings as a whole. Here, also, the remarked-upon essential feature—i.e., the understanding that it somehow concerns beings as whole—is grounded in that on which ἐπιστήμη λογική draws: namely, λόγος .


1) Logic as the reflection about reflection without an attachment to things. On the power of the self-reflection of subjectivity and pure thinking (Rilke, Hölderlin)

In this lecture on logic, we would like to set out to learn how to think. However, so that right at the beginning of our efforts a certain illumination already brightens this path, we must at least have provisional knowledge of what, through its

Logic, ἐπιστήμη, τέχνη    157

Heraclitus (GA 55) by Martin Heidegger