a house for the god and dwelling sites for mortals. It must content itself with building the path that leads back into the locality of a recovery of metaphysics and thereby lets us journey through what is destined in an overcoming of nihilism.

Whoever ventures such a word, particularly in a text for publication, knows all too well how overhastily and readily this saying, which is meant to provoke reflection, comes to be discarded as an obscure mumbling or dismissed as pompous proclamation. Despite this, he who continues to learn must direct his thought toward examining more originarily and with greater care the saying of recollective thinking. One day he may come to leave such saying in the realm of the mystery, as a supreme gift and greatest danger, as something seldom successful and frequently unsuccessful.

Here we may recognize why all saying of this kind proceeds awkwardly and with difficulty. It must always pass through the essential ambiguity of the word and its turns of phrase. The ambiguity of saying by no means consists in a mere accumulation of significations that arise arbitrarily. It resides in a play that, the richer it unfolds, remains all the more rigorously maintained in a concealed rule. Via the latter, the ambiguity plays in the balance of scales whose oscillation we rarely experience. This is why the saying remains bound to a supreme law. This law is the freedom that frees us for the ever playful jointure of never resting transformation. The ambiguity of those words that "arise like flowers" (Hölderlin, "Bread and Wine") is the garden of the wilderness in which growth and nurturance are attuned to one another out of an incomprehensible intimacy. It should not surprise you that the discussion of the essence of nihilism at every point of our path unavoidably comes upon that which provokes and is worthy of thought, and which we awkwardly enough [252] name the saying of thinking. This saying is not the expression of thinking, but thinking itself, its course and its song

What is the purpose of this letter? It attempts to raise into a higher ambiguity the title "Uber die Linie," i.e., everything that it describes in your sense and in mine and tries to demonstrate by saying it in writing. This higher ambiguity lets us experience to what extent the overcoming of nihilism demands a turning in into its essence, a turning in whereby the desire to overcome becomes untenable. The recovery of metaphysics calls thinking into a more originary calling.

Your assessment of the situation trans lineam and my discussion de linea are referred to one another. Together they are directed not to cease the


Martin Heidegger (GA 9) Pathmarks