held back (cf. Being and Time, p. 39). Here everythinga is reversed. The division in question was held back because thinking failed in the adequate sayingb of this turning [Kehre] and did not succeed with the help of the language of metaphysics. The lecture "On the Essence of Truth," thought out and delivered in 1930 but not printed until 1943, provides a certain insight into the thinking of the turning from "Being and Time" to "Time and Being." This turning is not a change of standpointc from Being and Time, but in it the thinking that was sought first arrives at the locality of that dimension out of which Being and Time is experienced, that is to say, experienced in10 the fundamental experience of the oblivion of being.d

By way of contrast, Sartre expresses the basic tenet of existentialism in this way: Existence precedes essence. In this statement he is taking existentia and essentia according to their metaphysical meaning, which from Plato's time on has said that essentia precedes existentia. Sartre reverses this statement. But the reversal of a metaphysical statement remains a metaphysical statement] With it he stays with metaphysics in oblivion of the truth of being. For even if philosophy wishes to determine the relation of essentia and existentia in the sense it had in medieval controversies, in Leibniz's sense, or in some other way, it still [160 {GA 9 328}] remains to ask first of all from what destiny of being this differentiatione in being as esse essentiae and esse existentiae comes to appear to thinking. We have yet to consider why the question about the destiny of being was never asked and why it could never be thought. Or is the fact that this is how it is with the differentiation of essentia and existentia not a sign of forgetfulness of being? We must presume that this destiny does not rest upon a mere failure of human thinking, let alone upon a lesser capacity of early Western thinking. Concealed in its essential provenance, the differentiation of essentia (essentiality) and existentia (actuality) completely dominates the destiny of Western history and of all history determined by Europe.

Sartre's key proposition about the priority of existentia over essentia does, however, justify using the name "existentialism" as an appropriate title for a philosophy of this sort. But the basic tenet of "existentialism" has nothing at all in common with the statement from Being and Time — apart from the

a First edition, 1949: In terms of the "what" and "how" of that which is thought-worthy and of thinking.

b First edition, 1949: Letting itself show.

c First edition, 1949: I.e., of the question of being.

d First edition, 1949:Forgottenness — Λήθη — concealing — withdrawal — expropriation: event of appropriation.

e First edition, 1949: This distinction, however, is not identical with the ontological difference. Within the latter, the said distinction belongs on the "side" of being.


Martin Heidegger (GA 9) Letter on Humanism - Pathmarks