EARLY GREEK THINKING


Rising as such is already inclined toward self-closing. The former is concealed in the latter. Κρύπτεσθοα is, as self-concealing, not a mere self-closing but a sheltering in which the essential possibility of rising is preserved—to which rising as such belongs. Self-concealing guarantees self-revealing its essential, unfolding. In self-concealing, inversely, what reigns is the restraint of the inclination to self-revealing. What would a self-concealing be if it did not restrain itself in its tendency toward rising?

And so φύσις and κρύπτεσθαι are not separated from each other, but mutually inclined toward each other. They are the Same. In such an inclination each first bestows upon the other its proper nature. This inherently reciprocal favoring is the essence of φιλεῖν and of φιλία. In this inclination by which rising and self-concealing lean toward each other the full essence of φύσις consists.

Therefore the translation of Fragment 123, φύσις κρύπτεσθαι φιλεῖ could run: "Rising (out of self-concealing) bestows favor upon self-concealing."

Still, we are thinking φύσις superficially if we think it as merely rising and letting rise, and if we continue to attribute qualities of any land to it. By doing that we overlook what is decisive: the fact that self-revealing not only never dispenses with concealing, but actually needs it, in order to occur essentially in the way it occurs [Wesen, west] as dis-closing. Only when we think φύσις in this sense may we say τήν φύσιν instead of τὸ μὴ δῦνόν ποτε.

Both names designate the realm which the reciprocal intimacy of revealing and concealing founds and governs. Within this intimacy is hidden the uniqueness and oneness of Ἕν—the One—which early thinkers presumably beheld in the wealth of its simplicity, which has remained closed to posterity. Τὸ μὴ δῦνόν ποτε, "the never going into concealment," never falls prey to concealment only to be dissolved in it, but remains committed to self-concealing, because as the never-going-info it is always a rising-out-of concealment. For Greek thinking, κρύπτεσθοα, though unuttered, is said in τὸ μὴ δῦνόν ποτε, and φύσις is thereby named in its full character, which is governed by the φιλία between revealing and self-concealing.


114