What is thinking concerned with?

Heidegger begins with the question : What is thinking concerned with?,
and compares his own answer to this question with that of Hegel. For
both Hegel and Heidegger, thought is concerned with Being. But for Hegel
Being is absolute thought thinking itself. How does Being come to
manifest itself as absolute thought for Hegel? Since the beginning of
metaphysics, Being has shown itself as having the character of ground,
of Logos. Thus thinking has concentrated on finding Being as the ground,
on giving reasons /(ratio)/


in answer to the question “why?” In the epochal clearing of Being
reached with Hegel, Being has become the absolute concept grasping
itself, the “absolute” has become the absolute /Idea. /This absolute
Idea moves forward through history toward the absolute, total result of
history in which all individual distinctions are at once negated as
being merely individual, preserved in their essential being, and
elevated into the higher reality of the whole.

For Heidegger, however, thinking is concerned with Being in regard to
its difference from beings. Heidegger doesn’t ask about Being as the
ground of beings; he goes from what is as yet un-thought, from the
difference between Being and beings /as difference /(the ontological
difference), to that which is to be thought, the /oblivion /of that
difference. The difference is nothing that man has somehow “forgotten.”
Oblivion belongs intrinsically to difference.


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