22 • The Fundamental Question of Metaphysics

Disclosedness means: the openedness of what the oblivion of Being closes off and conceals.17 Through this questioning, too, light first falls on the essence of metaphysics, which was also concealed up to now.]

“Introduction to metaphysics” accordingly means: leading into the asking of the fundamental question.18 But questions, and above all fundamental questions, do not simply occur like stones and water. Questions are not given like shoes, clothes, or books. Questions are as they are actually asked, and this is the only way in which they are. Thus, the leading into the asking of the fundamental question is not a passage over to something that lies or stands around somewhere; instead, this leading-to must first awaken and create the questioning. Leading is a questioning going-ahead, a questioning-ahead. This is a leadership that essentially has no following. Whenever one finds pretensions to a following, in a school of philosophy for example, questioning is misunderstood. There can be such schools only in the sphere of scientific or professional labor. In such a sphere, everything has its distinct hierarchical order. Such labor also belongs, and even necessarily belongs, to philosophy and has today been lost. But the best professional ability will never replace the authentic strength of seeing and questioning and saying.

17. “Erschlossenheit besagt: Aufgeschlossenheit dessen, was die Vergessenheit des Seins verschließt und verbirgt.” This could also mean: “… of what closes off and conceals the oblivion of Being.”

18. Throughout this passage, Heidegger plays on the connection between Einführung, “introduction,” and führen, “to lead.” Etymologically, Einführung means “leading into,” as do the Latin roots of the English “introduction.”

Introduction to Metaphysics, 2nd ed. (GA 40) by Martin Heidegger

Page generated by IntroMetaSteller.EXE