brought up, not to see in relationship to what it is necessary to seek proofs and when this is not necessary" (Metaphysics, 1006 a6ff.).

Now that we have given these pointers we may tum to the third theme - the decision whether and to what extent the theme of the dialogue is a genuine problem - and say the following:

On the basis of our deliberations on the second theme, the problem put by the dialogue must be expressed less equivocally. It must, in a purposely pointed formulation, read: "the problem of a nontechnological, non-natural-scientific thinking and speaking in today's theology." From this more commensurate reformulation, it is very clear that the problem as stated is not a genuine problem insofar as it is geared to a presupposition whose nonsense is evident to anyone. Theology is not a natural science.

Yet the problem as stated conceals the positive task for theology. That task is for theology to place in discussion, within its own realm of the Christian faith and out of the proper nature of that faith, what theology has to think and how it has to speak. This task also includes the question whether theology can still be a science - because presumably it should not be a science at all.


An example of an outstanding nonobjectifying thinking and speaking is poetry.

In the third of the Sonnets to Orpheus, Rilke says in poetic speech by what means poetic thinking and saying is determined. "Gesang ist Dasein"—"Song is existence" (cf. Holzwege, pp. 292ff.). Song, the singing saying of the poet, is "not coveting," "not soliciting" that which is ultimately accomplished by humans as an effect.

Poetic saying is "Dasein," existence. This word, "Dasein," is used here in the traditional metaphysical sense. It signifies: presence.

Poetic thinking is being in the presence of ... and for the god. Presence means: simple willingness that wills nothing, counts on no successful outcome. Being in the presence of ...: purely letting the god's presence be said.

Such saying does not posit and represent anything as standing over against us or as object. There is nothing here that could be placed before a grasping or comprehending representation.

"A breath for nothing." "Breath" stands for a breathing in and out, for a letting be said that responds to the word given us. There is no need for an extensive discussion in order to show that underlying the question of a


Martin Heidegger (GA 9) Pathmarks