PATHMARKS


speech, insofar as we represent the latter at best as the unity of phoneme (or written character), melody, rhythm, and meaning (or sense). We think of the phoneme and written character as a verbal body for language, of melody and rhythm as its soul, and whatever has to do with meaning as its spirit. We usually think of language as corresponding to the essence of the human being represented as animal rationale, that is, as the unity of body-soul-spirit. But just as ek-sistence — and through it the relation of the truth of being to the human being — remains veiled in the humanitas of homo animalis, so does the metaphysical-animal explanation of language cover up the essence of language in the history of being. According to this essence, language is the house of being, which is propriated by being and pervaded by being. And so it is proper to think the essence of language from its correspondence to being and indeed as this correspondence, that is, as the home of the human being's essence.

But the human being is not only a living creature who possesses language along with other capacities. Rather, language is the house of being in which the human being ek-sists by dwelling, in that he belongs to the truth of being, guarding it.

So the point is that in the determination of the humanity of the human being as ek-sistence what is essential is not the human being but being — as the dimension of the ecstasis of ek-sistence. However, the dimension is not something spatial in the familiar sense. Rather, everything spatiala and aU time-space occur essentially in the dimensionality that being itself is.

[165 {GA 9 334}] Thinking attends to these simple relationships. It tries to find the right word for them within the long-traditional language and grammar of metaphysics. But does such thinking — granted that there is something in a name — still allow itself to be described as humanism? Certainly not so far as humanism thinks metaphysically. Certainly not if humanism is existentialism and is represented by what Sartre expresses: précisément nous sommes sur un plan oil il y a seulement des hommes [We are precisely in a situation where there are only human beings] (Existentialism Is a Humanism, p. 36). Thought from Being and Time, this should say instead: precisement nous sommes sur un plan où il y a principalement l'Être [We are precisely in a situation where principally there is being]. But where does le plan come from and what is it? L'Etre et le plan are the same. In Being and Time (p. 212) we purposely and cautiously say, il y a l'Etre: "there is / it gives" ["es gibt"] being. Il y a translates "it gives" imprecisely. For the "it" that here "gives" is


a Plato's Doctrine of Truth, first edition, 1947: Space neither alongside time, nor dissolved into time, nor deduced from time.


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Martin Heidegger (GA 9) Pathmarks