Plato's Sophist [202-203]

But λόγος, does not mean reason, and in itself it does not have the meaning of νοεῖν but can only be the mode of carrying out perception itself. This usage requires a clarification of the unexplicit state of affairs lying at its foundation.

6.) Λόγος, also means "relation." This meaning becomes intelligible on the basis of the fundamental sense of λέγειν. Λέγειν means λέγειν τι κατά τινος: to address something as something, i.e., in regard to something. In λέγειν there resides a looking out on, a looking from one to another; therefore λόγος, also signifies relation. From its sense as an addressing of something as something, the term λόγος receives the derived meaning of relation. On this basis it is also intelligible that λόγος

7.) means ἀνάλογον, "ana-logy," the analogous, the cor-responding, to correspond as a determinate mode of being related.11,12

I will limit myself to this range of meaning of λόγος, because these are the ones we encounter predominantly, and specifically such that often several meanings are intended in one. And thus we can also understand how in the dialogue one step of the consideration is the result of another. This would remain obscure if we adhered to a single isolated meaning of λόγος.

And now as a transition to the dialogue itself a short orientation concerning διαλεκτική. Aristotle speaks about dialectic principally in two places: 1.) in connection with the determination of the task of philosophy as the fundamental science of beings (Met. IV, 2); and 2.) in the theory of λόγος in the Topics and in the treatise about false conclusions, which indeed properly belongs to the Topics and is to be considered the last book of the Topics. Thus 1.) in connection with σοφία, and 2.) in connection with the theory of λέγειν in the sense of theoretical discourse.13 A consideration of dialectic in connection with the πρώτη φιλοσοφία, the fundamental science, will at the same time provide us with an opportunity to cast a concrete regard toward the field of ontological research and to form a preliminary concept of the matters at issue in the Greeks' research into Being and how these matters were taken up. Thus far, we have only heard that this research would deal with the ἀρχαί of beings. A short exposition will provide us the outward look of such an ἀρχή. Likewise our consideration of the theory of λέγειν will allow us to understand the concept of the "logical" in connection with the phenomenon of λόγος.

11. AH: λέγειν—to take together in general—to relate.

12. See the appendix.

13. In his lectures Heidegger presented dialectic only in relation to Met. IV, 2 (cf. p. 149). From indications in the transcripts of the lectures as well as from a few clues in Heidegger's own manuscript, it is evident that a presentation of dialectic in relation to the Topics was also planned. But this was not carried out. See the appendix, Supplements 23 and 26.