The reference to "heing-in-the-world" as the basic trait of the humanitas of homo humanus does not assert that the human being is merely a "worldly" creature understood in a Christian sense, thus a creature turned away from God and so cut loose from "Transcendence." What is really meant by this word would he more clearly called "the transcendent." The transcendent is a supersensible being. This is considered the highest being in the sense of the first cause of all beings. God is thought as this first cause. However, in the name "being-in-the-world," "world" does not in any way imply earthly as opposed to heavenly being, nor the "worldly" as opposed to the "spiritual." For us "world" does not at all signify beings or any realm of beings but the openness of being. The human being is, and is human, insofar as he is the ek-sisting one. He stands out into the openness of being. Being itself, which as the throw has projected the essence of the human being into "care," is as this openness. Thrown in such fashion, the human being stands "in" the openness of being. "World" is the clearing of being into which the human being stands out on the basis of his thrown essence. "Being-in-the-world" designates the essence of ek-sistence with regard to the cleared dimension out of which the "ek-" of ek-sistence essentially unfolds. Thought in terms of ek-sistence, "world" is in a certain sense precisely "the beyond" within eksistence and for it. The human being is never first and foremost the human being on the hither side of the world, as a "subject," whether this is taken as "I" or "We." Nor is he ever simply a mere subject that always simultaneously is related to objects, so that his essence lies in the subject-object relation. Rather, before all this, the human being in his essence is ek-sistent [181 {GA 9 350] into the openness of being, into the open region that first clears the "between" within which a "relation" of subject to object can "be."

The statement that the essence of the human being consists in being-in-the- world likewise contains no decision about whether the human being in a theologico-metaphysical sense is merely a this-worldly or an other-worldly creature.

With the existential determination of the essence of the human being, therefore, nothing is decided about the "existence of God" or his "non-being," no more than about the possibility or impossibility of gods. Thus it is not only rash but also an error in procedure to maintain that the interpretation of the essence of the human being from the relation of his essence to the truth of being is atheism. And what is more, this arbitrary classification betrays a lack of careful reading. No one bothers to notice that in my essay "On the Essence of Ground" (1929) the following appears


Martin Heidegger (GA 9) Letter on Humanism - Pathmarks