ZOLLIKON SEMINARS, 1959-1969
Critique, as "to distinguish," means to allow the different as such to be seen in its difference. What is different is only different in one respect. In this respect, we catch sight of what is the same beforehand regarding what different things belong together. This same[ness] must be brought into view in each distinction. In other words, true critique, as in this letting-be-seen [Sehenlassen], is something eminently positive. Therefore, genuine critique is rare. A rough example of this distinction is the following: Green and red are only distinguishable insofar as something like color is pregiven. It is the same regarding which distinction can be performed in the first place. In order to explicate the psychosomatic as a problem, a genuine, that is, a phenomenological critique is needed. The critical question must be asked [concerning] which distinction we are talking about regarding the theme of the psychosomatic. How can this distinction be made? What different things stand in question regarding their difference? In respect to what sameness and unity do the different things [psyche and soma] show themselves as different? Is it already determined? If not, how is it determinable in the first place? As long as we are not thinking clearly and critically, that is, not asking in the preceding manner, it is as if we are groping about in an impenetrable fog with a very brittle stick. The results of scientific research might be ever so correct and useful, but it is not proved that they are also true. They are not proved to be true in the sense of making manifest the being of beings in its peculiarity, [the being] of beings in question at any given time. In psychosomatics the concern is the concrete humanity of the human being. The following attempt at a critique by means of our conversation and mutual reflection is not concerned primarily with medical science. It is a self-critique of philosophy and its entire history up to the present. And now to the text of the lecture: "What does the internist expect from psychosomatics?" I read on page 3, column B, above: "If psychiatrists do not dare to give a definition (of the psyche), we must go back to the origin of the word. Psyche means: anima, soul. The physician who is not specialized in the psyche understands this word to mean manifestations of an individual's life, those [manifestations] expressing themselves in emotions [Gefühle] and in the process of reasoning [Denkprozess]. Since disorders of mental processes, as we tacitly assume, do not obviously lead to symptoms of illness, we speak of psychosomatic illnesses if disorders of the emotional life cause symptoms of illness. If we comprehend them under the rubric of emotional illnesses, as proposed by some people, then we exclude a large group of illnesses from the concept of psychosomatic illness, namely the primarily bodily illnesses, which have secondary repercussions on the psyche. These somato-psychic illnesses, as Plügge once called them, if I am not mistaken, play an especially great role in medical practice.