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Dasein is an entity which, in its very being, comports itself understandingly towards that being. In saying this, we are calling attention to the formal concept of existence. Dasein exists. Furthermore, Dasein is an entity which in each case I myself am. Mineness belongs to any existent Dasein, and belongs to it as the condition which makes authenticity and inauthenticity possible ….
But these are both ways in which Dasein’s being takes on a definite character, and they must be seen and understood a priori as grounded upon that state of being which we have called “being-in-the-world”. An interpretation of this constitutive state is needed if we are to set up our analytic of Dasein correctly. The compound expression “being-in-the-world” indicates in the very way we have coined it, that it stands for a unitary phenomenon. This primary datum must be seen as a whole. But while being-in-the-world cannot be broken up into contents which may be pieced together, this does not prevent it from having several constitutive items in its structure. (Being and Time, p. 78)
To Dasein’s being, an understanding of being belongs. Any understanding [Verständnis] has its. being in an act of understanding [Verstehen]. If being-in-the-world is a kind of being which is essentially befitting to Dasein, then to understand being-in-the-world belongs to the essential content of its understanding of being. The previous disclosure of that for which what we encounter within-the-world is subsequently freed, amounts to nothing else than understanding the world that world towards which Dasein as an entity always comports itself.
Whenever we let there be an involvement with something in something beforehand, our doing so is grounded in our understanding such things as letting something be involved, and such things as the “with-which” and the “in-which” of involvements. Anything of this sort, and anything else that is basic for it, such as the “towards-this”, as that in which there is an involvement, or such as the “for-the-sake-of-which” to which every “towards-which” ultimately goes back- all these must be disclosed beforehand with a certain intelligibility [Verständlichkeif]. And what is that wherein Dasein as being-in-the-world understands itself pre-ontologically? In understanding a context of relations such as we have mentioned, Dasein has assigned itself to an “in-order-to” [Um-zu], and it has done so in terms of a potentiality-for-being for the sake of which it itself is—one which it may have seized upon either explicitly or tacitly, and which may be either authentic or inauthentic. This “in-order-to” prescribes a “towards-this” as a possible “in-which” for letting something be involved; and the structure of letting it be involved implies that this is an involvement which something has—an involvement which is with something. Dasein always assigns itself from a “for-the-sake-of-which” to the “with-which” of an involvement; that is to say, to the extent that it is, it always lets entities be encountered as ready-to-hand. That wherein [Worin] Dasein understands itself beforehand in the mode of assigning itself is that for which [das Woraufhin] it has let entities be encountered beforehand. “The wherein” of an act of understanding which assigns or refers itself, is that for which one lets entities be encountered in the kind of being that belongs to involvements; and this “wherein” is the phenomenon of the world. And the structure of that to which Dasein assigns itself is what makes up the worldhood of the world.
That wherein Dasein already understands itself in this way is always something with which it is primordially familiar. This familiarity with the world does not necessarily require that the relations which are constitutive for the world as world should be theoretically transparent. (Being and Time, pp. 118-19)
[O]ntologically mood is a primordial kind of being for Dasein, in which Dasein is disclosed to itself prior to all cognition and volition, and beyond their range of disclosure …. Ontologically, we thus obtain as the first essential characteristic of states-of-mind that they disclose Dasein in its thrownness and—proximally and for the most part—in the manner of an evasive turning-away.
… A mood assails us. It comes neither from “outside” nor from “inside”, but arises out of being-in-the-world, as a way of such being. But with the negative distinction between state-of-mind and the reflective apprehending of something “within”, we have thus reached a positive insight into their character as disclosure. The mood has already disclosed, in every case, being-in-the-world as a whole, and makes it possible first of all to direct oneself towards something. Having a mood is not related to the psychical in the first instance, and is not itself an inner condition which then reaches forth in an enigmatical way and puts its mark on Things and persons. It is in this that the second essential characteristic of states-of-mind shows itself. We have seen that the world, Dasein-with, and existence are equiprimordially disclosed; and state-of-mind is a basic existential species of their disclosedness, because this disclosedness itself is essentially being-in-the-world.
Besides these two essential characteristics of states-of-mind which have been explained—the disclosing of thrownness and the current disclosing of being-in-the-world as a whole—we have to notice a third, which contributes above all towards a more penetrating understanding of the worldhood of world …. [T]o be affected by the unserviceable, resistant, or threatening character of that which is ready-to-hand, becomes ontologically possible only is so far as being-in as such has been determined existentially beforehand in such a manner that what is encounters within-the-world can “matter” to it in this way. The fact that this sort of thing can “matter” to it is grounded in one’s state-of-mind; and as a state-of-mind it has already disclosed the world—as something by which it can be threatened, for instance. Only something which is in the state-of-mind of fearing (of fearlessness) can discover that what is environmentally ready-to-hand is threatening. Dasein’s openness to the world is constituted existentially by the attunement of a state-of-mind …. Under the strongest pressure and resistance, nothing like an affect would come about … if being-in-the-world, with its state-of-mind, had not already submitted itself to having entities within-the-world “matter” to it on a way which its moods have outlined in advance. Existentially, a state-of-mind implies a disclosive submission to the world, out of which we can encounter something that matters to us. (Being and Time, pp. 175–7)
As understanding, Dasein projects its being upon possibilities. This being-towards-possibilities which understands is itself a potentiality-for-being, and it is so because of the way these possibilities, as disclosed, exert their counter-thrust upon Dasein. The projecting of the understanding has its own possibility—that of developing itself. This development of the understanding we call “interpretation”. In it the understanding appropriates understandingly that which is understood by it. In interpretation, understanding does not become something different. It becomes itself. Such interpretation is grounded existentially in understanding; the latter does not arise from the former. Nor is interpretation the acquiring of information about what is understood; it is rather the working-out of possibilities projected in understanding ….
In terms of the significance which is disclosed in understanding the world, concernful being-alongside the ready-to-hand gives itself to understand whatever involvement that which is encountered can have. To say that “circumspection discovers” means that the “world” which has already been understood comes to be interpreted. The ready-to-hand comes explicitly into the sight which understands. All preparing, putting to rights, repairing, improving, rounding-out, are accomplished in the following way: we take apart in its “in-order-to” that which is circumspectively ready-to-hand, and we concern ourselves with it in accordance with what becomes visible through this process. That which has been circumspectively taken apart with regard to Its “in-order-to”, and taken apart as such—that which is explicitly understood—has the structure of something as something. The circumspective question as to what this particular thing that is ready-to-hand may be, receives the circumspectively interpretative answer that it is for such and such a purpose. If we tell what it is for, we are not simply designating something; but that which is designated is understood as that as which we are to take the thing in question. That which is disclosed in understanding—that which is understood—is already accessible in such a way that its “as” which can be made to stand out explicitly. The “as” makes up the structure of the explicitness of something that is understood. It constitutes the interpretation. In dealing with what is environmentally ready-to-hand by interpreting it circumspectively, we “see” it as a table, a door, a carriage, or a bridge; but what we have thus interpreted need not necessarily be also taken apart by making an assertion which definitely characterizes it. Any mere pre-predicative seeing of the ready-to-hand is, in itself, something which already understands and interprets …. When we have to do with anything, the mere seeing of the things which are closest to us bears in itself the structure of interpretation, and in so primordial a manner that just to grasp something free, as it were, of the “as” requires a certain readjustment. When we merely stare at something, our just-having-it-before-us lies before us as a failure to understand it any more. This grasping which is free of the “as” is a privation of the kind of seeing in which one merely understands. It is not more primordial than that kind of seeing, but is derived from it. If the “as” is ontically unexpressed, this must not seduce us into overlooking it as a constitutive state for understanding, existential and a priori. (Being and Time, pp. 188–90)
Dasein, as everyday being-with-one-another, stands in subjection to others. It itself is not; its being has been taken away by the others. Dasein’s everyday possibilities of being are for them others to dispose of as they please. These others, moreover, are not definite others. On the contrary, any other can represent them. What is decisive is just that inconspicuous domination by others which has already been taken over unawares from Dasein as being-with. One belongs to the others oneself and enhances their power. “The others” whom one thus designates in order to cover up the fact of one’s belonging to them essentially oneself, are those who proximally and for the most part are there in everyday being-with-one-another. The “who” is not this one, not that one, not oneself, not some people, and not the sum of them all. The “who” is the neuter, the “they”.
We have shown earlier how in the environment which lies closest to us, the public “environment” already is ready-to-hand and is also a matter of concern. In utilizing public means of transport and in making use of information services such as the newspaper, every other is like the next. This being-with-one-another dissolves one’s own Dasein completely into the kind of being of “the others”, in such a way, indeed, that the others, as distinguishable and explicit, vanish more and more. In this inconspicuousness and unascertainability, the real dictatorship of the “they” is unfolded. We take pleasure and enjoy ourselves as they take pleasure; we read, see, and judge about literature and art as they see and judge; likewise we shrink back from the “great mass” as they shrink back; we find “shocking” what Ary find shocking. The “they”, which is nothing definite, and which all are, though not as the sum, prescribes the kind of being of everydayness.
The “they” has its own ways in which to be. That tendency of being with which we have called “distantiality” is grounded in the fact that being-with-one-another concerns itself as such. with averageness, which is an existential characteristic of the “they”. The “they”, in its being, essentially makes an issue of this. Thus the “they” maintains itself factically in the averageness of that which belongs to it, of that which it regards as valid and that which it does not, and of that to which it grants success and that to which it denies it. In this averageness with which it prescribes what can and may be ventured, it keeps watch over everything exceptional that thrusts itself to the fore. Every kind of priority gets noiselessly suppressed. Overnight, everything that is primordial gets glossed over as something that has long been well known. Everything gained by a struggle becomes just something to be manipulated. Every secret loses its force. This care of averageness reveals in turn an essential tendency of Dasein which we call the “levelling down” of all possibilities of being. (Being and Time, pp. 164-5)
The closest closeness which one may have in being towards death as a possibility, is as far as possible from anything actual. The more unveiledly this possibility gets understood, the more purely does the understanding penetrate into it as the possibility of the impossibility of any existence at all. Death, as possibility, gives Dasein nothing to be “actualized”, nothing which Dasein, as actual, could itself be. It is the possibility of the impossibility of every way of comporting oneself towards anything, of every way of existing ….
Death is Dasein’s ownmost possibility. Being towards this possibility discloses to Dasein its ownmost potentiality-for-being, in which its very being is the issue. Here it can become manifest to Dasein that in this distinctive possibility of its own self, it has been wrenched away from the “they”. This means that in anticipation any Dasein can have wrenched itself away from the “they” already. But when one understands that this is something which Dasein “can” have done, this only reveals its factical lostness in the everydayness of the they-self.
The ownmost possibility is non-relational. Anticipation allows Dasein to understand that that potentiality-for-being in which its ownmost being is an issue, must be taken over by Dasein alone. Death does not just “belong” to one’s own Dasein in an undifferentiated way; death lays claim to it as an individual Dasein. The non-relational character of death, as understood in anticipation, individualizes Dasein down to itself. This individualizing is a way in which the “there” is disclosed for existence. It makes manifest that all being alongside the things with which we concern ourselves, and all being-with others, will fail us when our ownmost potentiality-for-being is the issue. Dasein can be authentically itself only if it makes this possible for itself of its own accord. But if concern and solicitude fail us, this does not signify at all that these ways of Dasein have been cut off from its authentically being-its-self. As structures essential to Dasein’s constitution, these have a share in conditioning the possibility of any existence whatsoever. Dasein is authentically itself only to the extent that, as concernful being-alongside and solicitous being-with, it projects itself upon its ownmost potentiality-for-being rather than upon the possibility of the they-self. The entity which anticipates its non-relational possibility, is thus forced by that very anticipation into the possibility of taking over from itself its ownmost being, and doing so of its own accord.
The ownmost, non-relational possibility is not to be outstripped. Being towards this possibility enables Dasein to understand that giving itself up impends for it as the uttermost possibility of its existence. Anticipation, however, unlike inauthentic being-towards-death, does not evade the fact that death is not to be outstripped; instead, anticipation frees itself for accepting this. When, by anticipation, one becomes free for one’s own death, one is liberated from one’s lostness in those possibilities which may accidentally thrust themselves upon one; and one is liberated in such a way that for the first time one can authentically understand and choose among the factical possibilities lying ahead of that possibility which is not to be outstripped. Anticipation discloses to existence that its uttermost possibility lies in giving itself up, and thus it shatters all one’s tenaciousness to whatever existence one has reached. (Being and Time, pp. 306–8)
Setting up a world and setting forth the earth, the work [of art] is the instigation of the strife in which the unconcealment of beings as a whole, or truth, is won.
Truth happens [for example) in the [Greek] temple’s standing where it is. This does not mean that something is correctly represented and rendered here, but that beings as a whole are brought into unconcealment and held therein. To hold originally means to take into protective heed. Truth happens in Van Gogh’s painting (of a peasant’s shoes]. This does not mean that something at hand is correctly portrayed but rather that in the revelation of the equipmental being of the shoes, beings as a whole—world and earth in their counterplay—attain to unconcealment. Thus in the work it is truth, not merely something true, that is at work. The picture that shows the peasant shoes, the poem that says the Roman fountain, do not simply make manifest what these isolated beings as such are—if indeed they manifest anything at all; rather, they make unconcealment as such happen in regard to beings as a whole. The more simply and essentially the shoes are engrossed in their essence, the more directly and engagingly do all beings attain a greater degree of being along with them. That is how self-concealing being is cleared. Light of this kind joins its shining to and into the work. This shining, joined in the work, is the beautiful. Beauty is one way in which truth essentially occurs as unconcealment. (“The Origin of the Work of Art”, in Basic Writings, pp. 180-81)
Speaking is known as the articulated vocalization of thought by means of the organs of speech. But speaking is at the same time also listening. It is the custom to put speaking and listening in opposition: one man speaks, the other listens. But listening accompanies and surrounds not only speaking such as takes place in conversation. The simultaneousness of speaking and listening has a larger meaning. Speaking is of itself a listening. Speaking is listening to the language which we speak. Thus, it is a listening not while but before we are speaking. This listening to language also comes before all other kinds of listening that we know, in a most inconspicuous manner. We do not merely speak the language—we speak by way of it. We can do so solely because we always have already listened to the language. What do we hear there? We hear language speaking.
But—does language itself speak? How is it supposed to perform such a feat when obviously it is not equipped with organs of speech? Yet language speaks. Language first of all and inherently obeys the essential nature of speaking: it says. Language speaks by saying, this is, by showing. What it says wells up from the formerly spoken and so far still unspoken Saying which pervades the design (Aufriss) of language (Sprachwesen). Language speaks in that it, as showing, reaching into all regions of presences, summons from them whatever is present to appear and to fade. We, accordingly, listen to language in this way, that we let it say its Saying to us. No matter in what way we may listen besides, whenever we are listening to something we are letting something be said to us, and all perception and conception is already contained in that act. In our speaking, as a listening to language, we say again the Saying we have heard. We let its soundless voice come to us, and then demand, reach out and call for the sound that is already kept in store for us (“The Way to Language”, in On the Way to Language, pp. 123-4).
الفصل الحادي عشر
What is modern technology? It too is a revealing …. The revealing that rules in modern technology is a challenging, which puts to nature the unreasonable demand that it supply energy which can be extracted and stored as such. But does this not hold true for the old windmill as well? No. Its sails do indeed turn in the wind; they are left entirely to the wind’s blowing. But the windmill does not unlock energy from the air currents in order to store it.
In contrast, a tract of land is challenged into the putting out of coal and ore. The earth now reveals itself as a coal mining district, the soil as a mineral deposit. The field that the peasant formerly cultivated and set in order appears differently than it did when to set in order still meant to take care of and maintain. The work of the peasant does not challenge the soil of the field. In sowing grain it places seed in the keeping of the forces of growth and watches over its increase. But meanwhile even the cultivation of the field has come under the grip of another kind of setting-in-order, which sets upon nature. It sets upon it in the sense of challenging it. Agriculture is now the mechanized food industry. Air is now set upon to yield nitrogen, the earth to yield ore, ore to yield uranium, for example; uranium is set upon to yield atomic energy, which can be unleashed either for destructive or for peaceful use.
This setting-upon that challenges forth the energies of nature is an expediting, and in two ways. It expedites, in that It unlocks and exposes. Yet that expediting is always itself directed from the beginning toward furthering something else, Le, toward driving on to the maximum yield at the minimum expense. The coal that has been hauled out in some mining district has not been supplied in order that it may simply be present somewhere or other. It is stockpiled; that is, it is on call, ready to deliver the sun’s warmth that is stored in it. The sun’s warmth is challenged forth for heat, which in turn is ordered to deliver steam whose pressure turns the who is that keep a factory running ….
The revealing that rules throughout modern technology has the character of a setting-upon, in the sense of a challenging forth. That challenging happens in that the energy concealed in nature is unlocked, what is unlocked is transformed, what is transformed is stored up, what is stored up is in turn distributed, and what is distributed is switched about ever anew. Unlocking, transforming, storing, distributing, and switching about are ways of revealing. But the revealing never simply comes to an end. Neither does it run off into the indeterminate. The revealing reveals to itself its own manifoldly interlocking paths, through regulating their course. This regulating itself is, for its part, everywhere secured. Regulating and securing even become the chief characteristics of the challenging revealing.
What kind of unconcealment is it, then, that is peculiar to that which results from this setting-upon that challenges? Everywhere everything is ordered to stand by, to be immediately at hand, indeed to stand there just so that it may be on call for a further ordering. Whatever is ordered about in this way has its own standing. We call it the standing-reserve. The word expresses here something more, and something more essential, than mere “stock”. The word “standing-reserve” assumes the rank of an inclusive rubric. It designates nothing less than the way in which everything presences that is wrought upon by the challenging revealing. Whatever stands by in the sense of standing-reserve no longer stands over against us as object. (“The Question Concerning Technology”, in The Question Concerning Technology and Other Essays, pp. 14–17)