12     Introduction

Although lēthē need not be temporally prior to unconcealing (see §4 and §12), a temporal metaphor is helpful to make this point. Daniel O. Dahlstrom notes that being ‘is at once (diachronically) the emergence from hiddenness and (synchronically) the differentiation and interplay of unhiddenness and hiddenness’.14 My claim is that the hiddenness from which being ‘diachronically’ emerges (concealment) must in principle be distinguished from that hiding with which it plays ‘synchronically’ (concealing). Put crudely: the hiddenness that comes ‘before’ un-concealing must be distinguished from that which happens ‘at the same time’ as it. These two phenomena of hiding are differently related to being, and since that is all that we know about them at this point, we must begin by assuming that they are different phenomena. Thus we must go beyond Wrathall to distinguish simultaneous concealing (Verbergung, Verbergen) from lēthē, prior concealment (Verborgenheit).

I will mark the distinction between simultaneous concealing and prior concealment in the English suffixes. Heidegger does not himself track the distinction in his use of Verbergung, Verbergen, and Verborgenheit; he uses each term to refer to both the activity of concealing and the concealment that is produced, and this sloppiness precludes him from using these terms to track the distinction I am insisting on. (In contrast, he does (at least sometimes) distinguish unconcealing and unconcealment. I return to this difference in a moment.)

Still, Heidegger does deploy different vocabularies when he discusses each phenomenon. As we have seen, lēthē is a darkness that is overcome through privation, as un-concealment arises out of it. Simultaneous concealing, in contrast, is often discussed positively as a sheltering. For example: ‘the dis-closure [Ent-bergen] is at the same time an en-closure [Ent-bergen] [. . . that] brings it into its essence’ (P: 133/GA54: 198) and which encloses the entity inside its that-and what-being. Such an en-closure or concealing is a ‘sheltering [Bergung] of the unconcealed in the unconcealedness of presence, i.e., in being. In such sheltering there first emerges the unconcealed as an entity’ (P: 133/GA54: 198). This sort of preserving complicates

14 Daniel O. Dahlstrom, ‘Being at the Beginning: Heidegger’s Interpretation of Heraclitus’, 144.

Katherine Withy - Heidegger on Being Self-Concealing