Wednesday, March 01, 2017
The story so far.
To take being out of the ἔστιν, the “is”—was of inmost necessity to the Greeks.
For they were to be the first to take being into understanding (which for them, e.g., for Parmenides, was νοῦς, apprehension). In such a horizon was grounded their existence in the midst of beings as such.
Why, however, precisely presence—from the present tense of the verb? Because presence the most proximate and the enduring.
Opposed to nothingness—opposed to the “not” and the “no.”
The beginning necessarily an immediate assertional “yes” to continuance, constancy, and circle.
The constancy maintains itself in all variations and extension in Plato (μὴ ὄν [“nonbeing”] as ὄν [“being”]) and Aristotle (δύναμις— ἐνέργεια, κινήσις [“potentiality—actuality, motion”]).
This understanding of being was incorporated by Christianity (Augustine— Thomas) into the horizon of an eternal creator-God. The understanding of being was thereby implanted into a realm of faith and became entrenched—lumen naturale [“natural light”].
Yet thereby for the first time the innermost act of beginning and questioning on the part of the Greeks was bent over toward results and—still more—toward the first truth.
The mathematical idea of knowledge at the start of modernity— itself basically ancient—now brought a grounding and new confirmation to the philosophical system. This renewed obstruction of the beginning found its conclusion in Hegel. His historical construction, which expressly took antiquity as thesis, became in this way a fortiori the suppression of the beginning.
P. 37
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