Fundamental Concepts of Metaphysics [523-24]

have been increasingly illuminated, instead of rushing into radicalisms? Accordingly, it might be better to take the position of first genuinely carrying out an ontology on whatever basis is possible now; there will be plenty of opportunity to radicalize things afterward.

We speak of the ontological difference as the distinction within which everything ontological moves: being and beings. Regarding this distinction, we can proceed further and distinguish accordingly that questioning which is concerned with beings in themselves, just as they are—ὃν ὡς ὄν, and the commensurate manifestness of beings as they in each case are in themselves, the manifestness of the ὄν: ontic truth. As opposed to this, we have that questioning which is concerned with beings as such, i.e., which inquires solely about what constitutes the being of beings, ὃ ᾗ ὄν: ontological truth. For this questioning makes specific use of the distinction between being and beings, counting not on beings, but on being. And yet—how do things stand with regard to this distinction itself? Is it a problem for ontological or for ontic knowledge? Or for neither of these, since each is already grounded upon it? With the intrinsically clear distinguishing of ontic and ontological—ontic truth and ontological truth-we indeed have that which is different in its difference, but not this difference itself. The question concerning this difference becomes all the more urgent when we see that this distinction does not arise subsequently by merely distinguishing two separate things lying before us, but in each case belongs to that fundamental occurrence in which Dasein moves as such.

§76. Projection as the primordial structure of the tripartite
fundamental occurrence of world-formation. The prevailing
of world as that of the being of beings as a whole in
the projection of world that lets it prevail.

The distinction between being and beings, which we scrutinized in nine points in all its enigmatic character, is thus only provisionally indicated in general so long as we talk of a 'distinction' and a 'difference'. For these are merely formal titles which, like the term 'relation', fit anything and everything, thus impairing nothing at first, yet providing nothing either. We say deliberately that they impair nothing at first. For we know from our previous discussions concerning formal analysis (cf. above regarding the 'as' and 'relation') that the indeterminacy of these terms is taken by our ordinary understanding as referring to a connection that is at hand among things that are at hand. Thus here too: the 'ontological difference' is precisely at hand. Yet this has already proved impossible. We have seen that this distinction is never at hand, but refers to something that occurs. At the same time, however, we have seen anew the

Martin Heidegger (GA 29/30) The Fundamental Concepts of Metaphysics

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