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Category Archives: On Truth

Truth leads to Untruth, Untruth leads to Truth.

The path and way of being, particularly human being, flows like this.
This is one of the most general notions that can be spoken about the Essence and Destiny of Man.

Truth leads to Untruth, Untruth to Truth.

Man is that organic process, that creatively ordered flux.

Man stands before the Cosmos a small frail being. Its incomprehensibility equal to its spatial scope. He almost drowns in the abyss of the Unknown.
Yet in the depths of this incomprehensible blackness, a light emerges.

Consciousness born. Man’s essence, like the tree, who rises and strives towards Sol, Man reaches for the light in Mind. And as the tree does not only rise up, so does it also descend.

And just as the seed had to incubate in the darkness before it could sprout, so Man also.

Being at one with the heights and the depths. Being at home in them and also a home for them.

Man, fearless only when he grasps his own oblivion.

For a dawn grows out from every darkness.
And Man is that Dawning.

Man is forever a Dawn and a dawning. And it takes time for this to dawn upon him.



4. The proximity to beings, as this is claimed for the second stage, has Still another Characteristic result: ὁ πρὁς μᾶλλον ὄντα τετραμμένος. ‘Whoever [like the former prisoner] is turned towards more beingful beings [towards what is more beingful than something else, thus to more genuine beings] sees more correctly.’ Thus ὀρθός, ὀρθότης, ‘correctness’ [Richtigkeit] crops up, and indeed in the comparative, in an intensification: there are gradations. The correctness of seeing and viewing things, and thus of definition and assertion, is grounded in the particular manner of orientation and proximity to beings, i.e. in the way in which beings are in each case unhidden. Truth as correctness is grounded in truth as unhiddenness. We now see for the first time, albeit only roughly, a connection between the two forms of essence (concepts of truth), which at the beginning we only considered separately and stood alongside one another. Truth as correctness of assertion is quite impossible without truth as the unhiddenness of beings. For that to which the assertion must direct itself, in order to be correct, must already be unhidden. So if one takes the essence of truth exclusively as correctness of assertion, one betrays a complete lack of understanding. Not only does one stand before a derivative concept of truth, but, because one does not see the origin of this derivative concept, one calls upon a half-measure, which does not become full by everyone going along with it. On the other hand, one will only be able to grasp the essence and specific necessity of this derivative form of truth, truth as correctness, if truth qua unhiddenness is explained and its necessity grounded; that is, if one can clarify both the origin and the derivation. This is indicated by Plato’s clear and simple statement: whoever is turned towards the more beingful beings, sees and talks more correctly’. This is a decisive step towards solving the problem of the relationship between the two concepts of truth.

-Heidegger (the Essence of Truth, p. 29-30)

…If, then, a retrieval of ethical and metaphysical values is what is needed, it can hardly be said that we are on the right road at present. The sense of human responsibility, seemingly strengthened by the exhortations of heroism, has been uprooted from the soil of the individual conscience and mobilised in favour of any collectivity which desires to impose its will and to elevate its limited insight to a canon of weal, thus greatly increasing the danger of absolutely irresponsible mass action. With the growing worthlessness of the spoken or printed word consequent upon its ever greater distribution which the progress of civilization has made possible, the indifference to truth increases in direct proportion. With the spread of the irrationalist attitude the margin of misunderstanding in every field is steadily expanding. The immediate publicity engendered by commercial interests and the craving for sensation inflates simple differences of opinion into national hallucinations. The ideas of the day demand immediate results, whereas the great ideas have always penetrated very slowly. Like smoke and petrol fumes over the cities, there hangs over the world a haze of empty words.

-Johan Huizinga (In the Shadow of Tomorrow, p. 208-9)