presence of being (i.e., of the Λόγος) directs itself to thinking (i.e., to λέγειν as ὁμολογεῖν). From out of this originary demand to the human by the Λόγος, all spiritedness—i.e., that which is innermost and most expansive in the disposition of the human—is directed toward being. The spiritedness that divines what regions from out of itself and rests within itself, as well as all that is inceptually sheltered and safeguarded, is found in authentic, essential thinking—presuming that such thinking will one day be granted to the human. That which originarily shelters all and conceals it back inside itself is the precious simpliciter. The knowing that unfolds within authentic thinking is the highest divining of that which is precious and noble [373]. That is why Heraclitus words the first sentence of saying 112 in the following way: τὸ φρονεῖν ἀρετὴ μεγίστη. φρόνησις / φρονεῖν / φρήν is thinking in the sense of the inexhaustible meaning of our German word “ sinnen ”: to reflect on something, to reflect-aft er it, and in this far-reaching reflecting to direct oneself toward a demand, and at the same time to mindfully consider, and in such considering enter into one’s own proper essence, the ownmost characteristic of which consists precisely in a belonging to that toward which all attentive hearkening is turned. In ‘reflecting’ lies the abiding drawing-out of what is also meant by the Greek word φρονεῖν, which can best be translated as “reflective thinking.” We can therefore express the first sentence of the saying in the following way: “Reflective thinking is the highest nobility.” Upon this follows the καί, which not only joins the sentence about σοφία onto the sentence about φρονεῖν, but which connects it in such a way that the καί says: and this is so because σοφία, which concerns itself with φρονεῖν, has the essence that is now to be stated. φρονεῖν is concern for σοφία : it is concernfullness—φιλία τῆς σοφίας. It is philosophy in the originary, pre-metaphysical sense.

Only when we have once again learned to intuit the essential, authentic essence of knowing (i.e., σοφία) in a way that experiences it, will we also understand at least a little about the concernfullness for this knowing. Only then will we come to realize what is at stake in this thoughtful concern for authentic knowing, and thus what is at stake in φιλία τῆς σοφίας, ‘philosophy.’ Philosophy is not a ‘discipline,’ nor an academic ‘major’ or ‘minor’: rather, it is a joint in which beyng joins itself to the thinking human, presuming that beyng is the jointure that operates as this joint amongst humans.

The unspoken meaning of saying 112, which is nevertheless essential for us to speak out loud, reads thusly:

τὸ φρονεῖν ἀρετὴ μεγίστη, καὶ σοφίη ἀληθέα λέγειν καὶ ποιεῖν κατὰ φύσιν ἐπαΐοντας (τοῦ Λόγου).

Reflective thinking is the highest nobility, because knowing is the gathering of what is unconcealed (from out of its concealment) [374] within its own bringing-forth that corresponds to emerging—(all of this indeed) in the attentive hearkening to the originary forgathering.

278    Logic: Heraclitus’s Doctrine of the Logos