That requires that we first experience the essence of the human being more primordially; but it also demands that we show to what extent this essence in its own way becomes destinal. The essence of [176] the human being lies in ek-sistence. That is what is essentially — that is, from being itself — at issue here, insofar as being appropriates the human being as ek-sisting for guardianship over the truth of being into this truth itself. "Humanism" now means, in case we decide to retain the word, that the essence of the human being is essential for the truth of being, specifically in such a way that what matters is not the human being simply as such. So we are thinking a curious kind of "humanism." The word results in a name that is a lucus a non lucendo [literally, a grove where no light penetrates].

Should we still keep the name "humanism" for a "humanism" that contradicts all previous humanism - although it in no way advocates the inhuman? And keep it just so that by sharing in the use of the name we might perhaps swim in the predominant currents, stifled in metaphysical subjectivism and submerged in oblivion of being? Or should thinking, by means of open resistance to "humanism," risk a shock that could for the first time cause perplexity concerning the humanitas of humo humanus and its basis? In this way it could awaken a reflection — if the world-historical moment did not itself already compel such a reflection — that thinks not only about the human being but also about the "nature" of the human being, not only about his nature but even more primordially about the dimension in which the essence of the human being, determined by being itself, is at home. Should we not rather suffer a little while longer those inevitable misinterpretations to which the path of thinking in the element of being and time has hitherto been exposed and let them slowly dissipate? These misinterpretations are natural reinterpretations of what was read, or simply mirrorings of what one believes he knows already before he reads. They all betray the same structure and the same foundation.

Because we are speaking against "humanism" people fear a defense of the inhuman and a glorification [177] of barbaric brutality. For what is more "logical" than that for somebody who negates humanism nothing remains but the affirmation of inhumanity?

Because we are speaking against "logic" people believe we are demanding that the rigor of thinking be renounced and in its place the arbitrariness of drives and feelings be installed and thus that "irrationalism" be proclaimed as true. For what is more "logical" than that whoever speaks against the logical is defending the alogical?

Because we are speaking against "values" people are horrified at a philosophy that ostensibly dares to despise humanity's best qualities. For what