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ELPENOR - Home of the Greek Word

Three Millennia of Greek Literature
The Greeks Us / Greece in West  

Heidegger, Through a foundational poetic and noetic experience of Being

From Heidegger's Introduction to Metaphysics. (Here translated by Elpenor)
The text contains some Greek words, download Greek fonts if you don't have.
Cf. Physis Library (Creation of the World)


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    IN the age of the first and exemplary growth of the Western philosophy from the Greeks, who for the first time asked about beings as such in their entirety, beings were named physis (φύσις). That foundational Greek word about beings usually is translated as "nature". But in this Latin translation the original and primary meaning of the Greek word φύσις is passed by, and the genuine philosophical denoting power of the Greek word is damaged. It didn't happen with this only the Latin translation, of this only the word, but also with all the other translations of the Greek philosophical language into Roman. What happened with that translation from Greek to Roman is not accidental nor harmless, but it is the first stage of the process of our getting cut, isolated and alienated from the original and primary essence of Greek philosophy. (...) Words and language are not bandages by which things are wrapped to be exchanged among those who speak and write. Things become and exist only inside the word, in language. This is the reason why a bad use of language, in chatter and slogans, destroys our genuine contact with things. What is it, then, that the word φύσις says? (...) Lexically it means φύειν, growing. But what is the meaning of φύειν? Does it mean only growth of quantity, that something becomes something more and bigger? (...) Greeks did not begin to learn what φύσις is through the natural phenomena, but on the contrary: through a foundational poetic and noetic experience of Being, there opened before them what they will call φύσις. It was only through this opening that they could see also nature in the narrow sense. That way, then, φύσις, in the primary and original sense, means as much the sky as the earth, as much the stone as also the plants, as much the animals as man and human history as a work of men and of Gods, finally and above all it means Gods themselves with their destiny.
    Cf. Heidegger and Aletheia (truth) - a discussion  Erigena, By His seeing and running all things are made  Nicolaus Cusanus, Incorruptible certainty of mathematical signs  Hobbes, Faith needs freedom and counseling  Schiller, A glorious humanity  Hesiod, In the beginning was Nothing  Orphica, Everything was generated by Love  Plato Home Page
Three Millennia of Greek Literature

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