of oneself as an object whose very being is other than that of oneself. Nevertheless, the acting self in question is not at all a "subject" in any modern sense—not least because it cannot be represented.18 Φρόνησις is an intrinsic relation to one's own being. To formulate it in terms that parallel Heidegger's characterization of Dasein in Being and Time—a parallel we shall investigate further in chapter 4—φρόνησις entails a seeing in which the being of the human being that I myself am is in question (and thus in some sense open, at stake, yet to be decided). It entails a kind of seeing whose own mode of being is not indifferent to it; its activity is structured as an ontico-ontological care for self.19 Insofar as the ἀρχή and τέλος of φρόνησις coincide, φρόνησις thus seems to be a complete and self-contained form of knowing, which Aristotle will thus describe as a "seeing of oneself [τὸ αὑτῷ εἰδέναι]" (NE, 1141b35). In our doing and acting, we "see" ourselves and are thus in a sense present to ourselves immediately, without any contemplative distance or objectification.
Nevertheless, our originary, worldly relation to ourselves as acting beings not only presupposes concealment; this relation and its attendant concealment can themselves become concealed and covered over in and through our guiding interpretations of ourselves and of the world. Φρόνησις is disclosive—it is an ἀληθεύειν—precisely because concealment is intrinsic to the being of the self as acting. As Heidegger puts it, "Insofar as the human being himself is the object of the ἀληθεύειν of φρόνησις, the human being must be in a situation of being covered over from himself, of not seeing himself, so that an explicit ἀ-ληθεύειν is required in order to become transparent [durchsichτig] to oneself" (GA 19, 51). Self-disclosure, attaining transparency, is relative to the practical situation; it is radically finite and, as such, an infinite task, one that must be accomplished ever anew.20 Furthermore, concealment of oneself is not only a possible result of a particular self-interpretation. As Aristotle indicates by reference to pleasure and pain, a mood or attunement can conceal the human being from himself, so that the ἀρχή "does not show itself" (οὐ φαίνεται) as such.21 And for this reason, φρόνησις must repeatedly be retrieved (σῴζει) by a certain composure (σωφροσύνη) (NE, 1140b10f.).
Heidegger thus initially sums up φρόνησις as follows:
Φρόνησις is thus nothing self-evident, but is a task that must be seized in a prohairesis.. Φρόνησις is a hexis of ἀληθεύειν,
18 See part 3 of the present study, "The Threshold of Representation."
19 Cf. our remarks in "Care for the Self: Originary Ethics in Heidegger and Foucault," Philosophy Today 42, no. 1/4 (Spring 1998): 53—64
20 GA 19, 56; see also chapter 4 below.
21 GA 19, 51-52; NE, 1140b17.