Being Should be Thought Without the Thought of Change or Progress
Hölderlin was not Hölderlin for Goethe. He simply understood that a young student, who could speak with at least some competence on those philosophical matters of which he, the student, was acquainted, was recommended to his attention. But not in any serious way or for any special reason. But Heidegger says, will the poet be oustripped, will the poet be overthrown, and he answers, never. The difference recommends itself to our attention, but momentarily, for we sense it, it is intelligible to us, but what more can we do with the fact? Is it then one more “interesting” observation among others? There is something in this change, but even if we are not prone to call all such matters “subjective” and to, thereby, sweep them under the rug of thought, what more is left to be done? All of Historicism, of the study of what is irreversible, hangs upon this which approaches noninterest and something one can’t be bothered with.
In the primary phenomena, what follows from the most-awake look at daily experiences, at what one actually lives, not the abstract, there is no less an irreversibility which characterizes everything. All things do not know how they are supposed to show themselves. According to a supposed ‘slice’ or fragment of time, that blocks out all history and thus all change in the thing as it is shown? It is of no use to pretend that the latest view of modern science, a recent enough notion, of the science of observation, measurement, and test, is eternal, true, or neutral. The claim about the neutrality, an illusion, can easily be destroyed in the light of the history of the development of the conception of this neutrality. It is no metaphor to say that nature, nature’s mysterious laws, the physicists frequently call them so, could with no loss be called god’s laws. If the notion of the personal god, with its question of the salvation of the individual, and thus the concern with the sin of that individual, is not the conception of god. So far as god is essence, which the word always named prior to the seventeenth century, “nature’s god”, sans, the word god, only says the neutral god. But the neutrality is wholly without content except in the light of the notion of the benign god, of the wrathful god, and of the god concerned with personal salvation. (Its sustained or ongoing raison d'etre is political, and verbal, therefor it is a smokescreen and confusing.)
Just like Hölderlin the knowledge wants to show itself as this or that kind of fact. A stone, or a desk, a copy of the latest art-fair catalog, or the mild climate of California, do not know how long their moment is. How long do they stay what they are? When Husserl discovered the way observation, in literal fact, must involve a kind of narration, there is somehow implied the “sui generis” of interpretation. “Somehow implied” is too weak, simply one narrates the thing and watches it not remain what it is.
One must pay attention to the ground of deception, and the ground of the creative thought. It is always possible for someone to make a certain change in their account without changing the thing. But Nietzsche says, Goethe, Goethe the great poet, is not perfect as you thought. “Excuse me for the fact” (Beyond Good and Evil), that he does not remain. The reason he is to excuse the fact is because he saw the failures in such a way as to hold up Hölderlin (sic) in another light. Heidegger says the creative one is violent, but decisively he says, the creative one is not happy with his superiority or power. Nietzsche does not find the creativity in the will, or intention, of someone. In the sense that will to power speaks, it is not as a matter of an individual self-doing or of an intended action. It is called Rausch, it is a growing, the mental controls are not on. How is the growth of the concept like the growth of the being itself?
At first, biologically, it seems a mere signal that relays back from the “outside” to the living-drive is enough to speak of a living thing. A plant perhaps is living, but has no true inner life. But, certainly an animal has an “inner” life. Things stand before it. It feels and imagines and it is voracious and its life is in the peculiar animus, or intention, of the instinct. Instinct is a name for nothing other than the life of the living thing. But, in the Nietzschean sense, language is supposed to be a tool of this instinct. Just as a computer is a tool. Something about this brings us to the precise sense in which Heidegger does not stay with the merely “ontic” in Nietzsche. Likewise, even in so far as Kierkegaard understands the knight of faith, as the mystery of the Element as the personality, which is what can be utterly concealed from the profane glance, and lived only in its own knowledge, Kierkegaard does not say, this Element leads me to the thought of Being. Heidegger says, however, the Element is always a harbinger of Being, or, something that makes us think of Being. This argument occurs, for example, in the book on metaphysics where he speaks of the moments of great joy or sorrow in their connection to Being.
So far as I know no one currently studying Heidegger understands this sense of Being. It is not “non-presence”. It is not, the impromptu or at-hand as the “authentic”. Those arguments which assume such things, stem from a fundamental lack of philosophic sense. What I mean is that they don’t sense, at all, what the purpose of the work is. Heidegger would say, that they don't sense what is "essential" in the work. It is decisive, as well, to notice that the dispute between Husserl and his student is over the matter of “the point” of history. Husserl simply refuses to “end” history. But without the ‘end of metaphysics’, there is no “point" to it all. Heidegger understands Aristotle to do the same thing as Descartes does with the absolute doubt, because that is a method for going to the phenomena and with great energy discarding everything else.