possibility of the latter. Accordingly, if the nothing prevails within nihilism and the essence of the nothing belongs to being, [242] yet being is the destiny of the surpassing, then the essential locale of nihilism shows itself to be the essence of metaphysics. This can be said only if, and so long as, we experience the essence of metaphysics as the destiny of the surpassing.

Wherein does the overcoming of nihilism then consist? In the recovery [Verwindung] of metaphysics.6 This is a disagreeable thought. People try to avoid it. This is all the more reason not to make it any easier. Yet taking up this thought will encounter less resistance if we heed the fact that the thought entails that the essence of nihilism is nothing nihilistic, and that nothing is detracted from the ancient worthiness of metaphysics by the fact that its own essence shelters nihilism within it.

The zone of the critical line, i.e., the locality of the essence of consummate nihilism, would thus have to be sought where the essence of metaphysics unfolds its most extreme possibilities and gathers itself in them. This occurs where the will to will wills, i.e., challenges, sets in place everything that presences, and does so solely in the thoroughgoing and uniform orderability of its standing reserve. As the unconditional gathering of such setting in place, being does not disappear. It irrupts in a singular uncanniness. Only what was previously present, that which the will to will had not yet seized, but continued to leave in the will of spirit and its totalizing self-movement in which Hegel's thinking moves, shows itself as having disappeared and been reduced.

The disappearance of what was previously present is not a vanishing of presencing. Rather, presencing presumably withdraws. Yet such withdrawal remains concealed from representation as nihilistically determined. It appears as though that which presences in the manner of standing reserve were self-sufficient. The subsistence of such standing reserve and that which sets it into such constancy, namely, the coming to presence of that which presences, appear - whenever they are talked about - as an invention of a thinking that roams about and is no longer able to see the supposedly sole "reality" on account of its seeing only the "being" of beings.

[243] In the phase of consummate nihilism, it looks as though there were no such thing as the being of beings, as though there were nothing (in the sense of a negative nothing) to being. Being remains absent in a strange way. It conceals itself. It maintains itself in a concealment that conceals itself. In such concealing, however, there lies the essence of oblivion as experienced by the Greeks. In the end, i.e., from the beginning of Its essence, such oblivion is nothing negative. As a sheltering in concealment, rather, it is presumably a sheltering that preserves what is as yet