The Metaphysical origins of language. Phenomenological Reflections about language in M.



Oscar Barragán Abreu2

Universidad Pedagógica Experimental Libertador (Venezuela)


Recibido: Julio 13  de 2016 – Revisado: Octubre  15 de 2016 - Publicado In PRESS: Marzo 6 de 2017


Referencia norma APA: Barragán-Abreu, O.  (2017). Los Orígenes Metafísicos del Lenguaje. Reflexiones fenomenológicas en torno al lenguaje en M. Heidegger. Rev. Guillermo de Ockham, 15(1), In press.


  This work is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND



In his most famous work, Sein und Zeit, M.Heidegger does a brief analysis of language in the frame of the being-in as such. In it, he relates this phenomenon with the opening of Dasein, understanding, affective disposition, listening and silence. Nevertheless, we consider that to reach a broader understanding of language from Heidegger's approach; we cannot limit ourselves to a Sein und Zeit, rather we must analyze his principal lessons and conferences about the topic and  relate also to the complete ontological structure of Dasein when asking the question about being. Therefore, we propose that language understands, means and expresses the being from the complete ontological structure of Dasein and when it becomes everydayness, it drags language, which inevitably becomes gossip (Gerede). We use the phenomenological method, also applying for hermeneutics a synthesis of its main lessons regarding the topic approximately between 1920 and 1940. The conclusion is that, paradoxically, language understood as listening (Hören), poetically determines the return, the resolution (Entschlossenheit) and the opening (Entschlossenheit) of Dasein to the question of being in its fullness.

Keywords: Language, listening, understanding, Dasein, foundation.



En su obra central Sein und Zeit , M.Heidegger realiza un análisis sucinto del lenguaje dentro del marco del estar-en como tal. En él, relaciona a tal fenómeno con la aperturidad del Dasein, el comprender, la disposición afectiva, la escucha y el callar. Sin embargo, consideramos que si queremos alcanzar una comprensión más amplia del lenguaje desde la forma como lo abordó Heidegger, no podemos limitarnos a Sein und Zeit , sino que debemos analizar sus principales lecciones y conferencias en torno al tema y en relación además a la estructura ontológica completa del Dasein de cara a la pregunta por el ser. Proponemos por ello que el lenguaje comprende, significa y expresa el ser desde la estructura ontológica completa del Dasein, y que cuando está cae en la cotidianidad, arrastra al lenguaje, que degenera inevitablemente como habladuría (Gerede). Utilizamos el método fenomenólogico, pero aplicamos además para la hermenéutica, una síntesis de sus principales lecciones relacionadas al tema entre 1920 y 1940 aproximadamente. La conclusión es que, paradójicamente, el lenguaje entendido como escucha (Hõren) determina poiéticamente el regreso, la resolución (Entschlossenheit) y apertura (Erschlossenheit) del Dasein a la pregunta por el ser en su plenitud.

Palabras clave: lenguaje, escucha, comprensión, Dasein, fundamento.


Previous Explanations

These reflections about language take part in a broader research titled The Liberation of the Question of Being, which is based on a synthetic interpretation of some of Martin Heidegger’s lessons and conferences confronted in his most important work Being and Time. In particular his lecture in the winter of 1929 titled Einleitung in die Philosophie; the lessons from the winters of 1935/36 Die Frage Nach dem Ding. Zu Kants Lehre von den transzendentalen Grundsätzen; and his speech Hölderlin und das Wesen der Dichtung, given in Rome on April 1936, included in a bigger work in 1944 of the ºreflections of Heidegger about the great German poet titled Erläuterung zu Hölderlins Dichtung. Parting from a broader hermeneutic of the texts, the primary purpose of this research is to understand the human being cofounded ontologically through four fundamental metaphysical features: world disclosure, historicity, truth, and language. They allow the entity, which is the human as a human being, and differentiate it from a whole other entity. These four fundamentals, which conform the originally the ontological structure of Dasein, are found in two modes: firstly, in everyday degradation (Entartüng), determined by the fall of Dasein (Verfallen): here world disclosure is assumed from the world received, historicity falls into the irresponsibility of acting according to others, and from a present full of transience and immediacy, truth becomes prejudice and supposal, and language is degraded as the “instrument" whose main function is to "inform" and "voice". However, in the resolution of Dasein (Erschlossenheit), in which it completely assumes its temporal condition of being-toward-death and its original comprehension of being as care (Sorge) they assume their mode of being full. In this case, we only present the language and how this, from its degrading phase, returns once again to its metaphysical fundamental in the liberation of the question of being. We invite you to always keep in mind these previous explanations as a constant frame for these reflections. We clarify that our research thoroughly follows the inquiries about language in Heidegger by Jan Aler. Unlike many, he always tried to have in his analysis, the complete coherent flexible and moving structure of Dasein, the complete methodological horizon of M. Heidegger and the poetic sensibility to understand and interpret the track of literature and art, which would fall into what Heidegger himself called an ontic interpretation:

Heidegger's explanation describes the structural unity in which the ontological determinations are to be understood, beginning with a nucleus which is always carefully adhered to. Again in a circular movement, such a description passes through the moments of the structures almost with desperate tenacity, guarding against its splintering. (Cockelmans, J.1972:49).



It was also beneficial to consult a lecturer of Universidad Nacional de General Sarmiento in Universidad Católica Argentina and Universidad de Belgrano, Dr. Juan Blanco Ilari’s research paper titled Blanco Ilari, Juan.(2015) Horizons of Meaning and ontic metamorphosis on the fate of a broken dialogue; as well as Edward Javier Ordóñez’s paper titled Traits of Fundamental Ontology, which were useful to widen and confirm our approach. We would also like to add that despite following Heidegger's work rigorously, these reflections have not been realized with an orthodox and rigid attitude of his thought, rather "from" the thought itself. Understating "from” to be the freedom and the space which opens and allows a dia-logue (dia-logoV) with the great German philosopher.


The current need of a metaphysical substantiation of language4

Our Being in the world is manifested through language. It is not that in certain moments we communicate and in others, we do not. The human being cannot not communicate. In fact, in our most obstinate closing to the world, we are already communicating. We say and always refer to the Same (Heidegger, 1999:98-131), which is why everyday comprehension of this phenomenon as an emission, reception, and message decoding technique, results in an insufficient extreme. Human beings can separate or not from the techniques from time to time in their daily routine, but not from language. Their way of being factual-historical in the world is and always has been, an attitude towards this communicative dimension, be it in their sleep, work, or solace. Why? Could it be because when we ask ourselves more about this linguistic phenomenon, we might find other more essential phenomena? Certainly, the modern man in his everyday life can change –and has changed- language into a dominating and controlling, managing and safety technique. Not only changing this but also the whole field of reality in which it is found. (Heidegger, 2006: 45-46) But does this important language phenomenon let itself be closed in this degradation?

A speaker sending a message supposes that an entity has a previous comprehension and interpretation, making it legible in what wants to be said to the listener. But it is precisely this previous comprehension, (Verständnis), pre-ontological, in which the being is manifested, that is constantly overlooked in the continuous interpretation of all mundane entities. To this, Jan Aler expresses:

Interpretative explanation develops these possibilities projected by man's understanding; it unfolds this meaning. Explanation grasps the meanings that understanding has established. This totally of references, this whole that has been articulated before all explanation, this multifarious unity of meanings, is disclosed primarily by understanding (Cockelmans, J.1972: 48).



The being has always been the most ignored, to the point at which, inclusively we forget the forgetfulness of the being (Heidegger, 2006). The interpretation of the message, reduced to decoding, refers only to a conventional and arbitrary reading of it when giving priority to the code, it leaves aside, beforehand, the metaphorical and poietic interpretations of the entity. On the other hand, the reception finally supposes a listening towards the being, that goes beyond everyday listening about the entity. But not even modern linguistics manage to fully and radically clarify, neither the previous comprehension of the speaker nor the arbitrary reading of the codes and listening (Hören) as an essential requirement of any listener and any speaker. Could it be, just a coincidence, that everyday interpretation of language as a symbol decoding technique dominates the field of current public opinion?5 Does it not come itself from a technical comprehension of the world, in other words, what we conceive as reality? Certainly, the project of being modern, which we are still on, conceives the total of the entity as domination and will of power, and science itself as comprehension, management and productive application to the law of causality (Heidegger, 2006:113-115). In every phenomenon, according to it, primacy is given to the cause-and-effect law. However, all the ontological fundamentals leading to it are reduced and abstracted. All pre-supposed (positum) of the subject (subiectum) which make science, without the ones which it would be impossible to conceive this. Inclusively, this resignation of the ontological meditation is taken as a methodological win (Heidegger, 2006: 75).

 From this consideration, it is not sufficient that modern linguistics, through pragmatics (with Apel), psychobiology (with Chomsky), semiotics (with Pierce, Hjelmslev, and Parret), modern epistemology (Popper), and inductive logic (Carnap) multiply their methods; nor that it also exempts them. From that lack of comprehension and serious treatment of supposed ontological sayings, as much as you want to pretend to ignore, are still basing themselves on ontological foundations, however, from an ontic interpretation leaving aside the meditation of being (Heidegger, 2006: 114). In fact, the line traced by Heidegger from German linguistics at the end of the eighteenth century (Herder, Humboldt), defers the modern epistemological line which conceives language as an instrument, and whose principal guidelines date back to philosophers such as T. Hobbes, Locke, and Condillac. Regarding the line of German thought and its difference to modern epistemology highly influenced by empiricism, Charles Taylor says:


I want to call this line of thinking "expressive-constitutive." It arises in the late eighteenth century in reaction to the main doctrine about language which develops within the confines of modern epistemology. The philosophy articulated in different ways by Hobbes, Locke, and Condillac. On this view, language is conceived as an instrument. The constitutive theory reacts against this, and Heidegger's image of language speaking can be seen as a development out of this original reaction. (Dreyfus, H.Wrathall,M,2005: 433)

Moreover, that we appeal to cultural anthropology (Levi-Strauss), to ethnology (Farrar), to mathematical and atomism logic (Russel, first Wittgenstein), or to psychology (Jung) understanding language itself, be it a communicative faculty or a mere phonetic-physiologic conduct, it is not sufficient to place ourselves in the necessary ontological horizon. Whoever perceives an explanation founded and originated in the phenomena of the manifestation (truth), comprehension of being (transcend), presentation (temporality) and interpretation (world disclosure) resulting in deductive and ontological conditions of language, understood as the manifestation of the being of the entity itself (apofansiV) (Heidegger, 1993: 178). They also do not explain the thesis posed at the beginning: human beings cannot “not” be language. Surely these foundations of language do not refer to phonetic capacities or coded cultural interpretations of the world, rather they transcend the factual experience and, additionally, make it possible from the ontological structure of the human being projected with the world and, from this, all decisive comprehension attempts of language understood as speech must start (Rede):

Die Versuche, das ‹‹Wesen der Sprache‹‹ zu fassen, haben denn immer auch die Orientierung an einem einzelnen dieser Momente genommen und die Sprache begriffen am Leitfaden der Idee des ‹‹ Ausdrucks ‹‹ , ‹‹ der symbolischen Form ‹‹ , der Mitteilung als ‹‹ Aussage ‹‹ , der ‹‹ Kundgabe ‹‹ von Erlebnissen oder der ‹‹ Gestaltung ‹‹ des Lebens. Für eine voll zureichende Deefinition der Sprache wäre aber auch nichts gewonnen, wollte man diese verschiedenen Bestimmungsstücke synkretistisch zusammenschieben. Das Entscheidende bleibt, zuvor das ontologisch-existenziale Ganze der Strucktur der Rede auf dem Grunde der Analitik des Daseins herauszuarbeiten. (Heidegger, 1984: 163)


The first steps to a comprehension originated in language in a hermeneutic direction, opposed to the abstraction of modern linguistic interpretation and supporting the ontological shift realized by M. Heidegger made by Wilhelm von Humboldt in the nineteenth century, supporting himself in the problem of world disclosure. Therefore, agreeing with Charles Taylor, it is accurate to understand the horizon in which the problematic of language in Heidegger is framed, to go back to the linguistic "revolutionary" contribution reached in Germany at the end of the eighteenth century:

I want to offer a reading of Heidegger's views on language which places him within the context of the revolutionary change in the understanding of language and art that occurred in the late eighteenth century in Germany. I believe this is the most fruitful context in which to set his writings on the topic.(Dreyfus,H:2005:433)


Referring to the linguistic perspective proposed by W. von Humboldt, H.G. Gadamer expresses in a fundamental chapter of Truth and Method (Wahrheit und Methode), the third part of the work, in which language is treated as a horizon of a hermeneutic ontology (Sprache als Horizon einer hermeneutischen Ontologie)  and language as a world experience (Sprache als Welterfahrung):

Seine eigentlich Bedeutung fur das Problem der Hemeneutik liegt woanders: in der Erweisung der Sprachansicht als Weltansich. Er hat den lebindegen Vollzug des Sprechens, die sprachliche Energeia als das Wesen der Sprache erkannt und dadurch den Dogmatismus der Grammatiker gebrochen.(...) Er hat gezeigt wie schief diese Frage ist, sofern sie die Konstruction einer sprachlosen Menschenwelt einschließt, deren Erhebung zur Sprachlichkeit irgendwand und irgendwo vor sich gegangen sei. Einer solchen Konstruction gegenüber betont Humboldt mit Recht, daß die Sprache von ihrem Anbeginn an menschlich ist. Diese Festellung verändert nicht nur der Sinn der Frage nach dem Ursprung der Sprache- Sie ist die Basis einer weitreichenden anthropologischen Einsicht. (Gadamer,1990:446)


Immediately and against a methodological reductionism, Gadamer himself clearly highlights the intrinsic relation of language with world disclosure and hence, with ontology:

Die Sprache is nicht nur eine der Austtatungen, die dem Menschen, der in dem Welt ist, zukommt, sondern auf ihr beruht,und in ihr stellt sich dar, daß die Menschen überhaupt Welt haben.(...) Wichtiger aber ist, was dieser Aussage zugrunde liegt: daß die Sprache ihrerseits gegenüber der Welt,die in ihr zu Sprache kommt, kein selbtständiges Dasein behauptet.Nicht nur ist die Welt nur Welt, sofern zur Sprache kommt, die Sprache hat ihr eigentliches Dasein nur darin, daß sich in ihr die Welt darstellt. Die ursprünglichen Menschlichkeit der Sprache bedeutet also zugleich die ursprünglichen Sprachlichkeit des menschlichen in-der-Welt-Seins. (Gadamer,1990:446)


Language and communication itself cannot seek to be explained from the criteria which artificial systems are conceived and analyzed, rather, from a linguistic community based on world disclosures as one of their principal existential and metaphysical categories (Gadamer, 1990: 450)


From his first questionings about factual life (Einleitung in die Phäenomenologie der Religion 1920- Ontologie.Hermeneutik der Faktizität-1923), throughout his course Logik: Die Frage nach der Wahrheit given in the summer term of 1934, after resigning his position as rectorate; to his conferences and collected writings in Unterwegs zu Sprache  in the 1950s, even up to the last days of his life, through his concern for the problem of logoV in Heraclitus, M. Heidegger has been one of the philosophers of the twentieth century who was very concerned about substantiating the essence of language from an originated ontology6, to a direct dialogue alongside Heraclitus, Parmenides, Plato and in particular Aristotle, among others. Regarding Heidegger’s importance and contributions, in his essay Heidegger's Conception of Language in Being and Time, Jan Aler expresses:

Reflections on language occupy an important place in twentieth-century philosophy due to the situation in which philosophy finds itself today. This applies in particular to Heidegger's work. Not only do Heidegger's reflections on language stand out, but also his use of language is especially remarkable. Two aspects of his language must be considered: his mode of expression and the manner he presents his argumentation using linguistic (or also) literary data. (Cockelmans, J.1980)


From the perspective of his enormous work, language is in no way a mere instrument, rather, it is conceived as what opens access to being in the shared world and, in fact, calls it “the house of being.” C. Taylor says, about this radical position Heidegger has: “To describe language as ‘the house of being,' for instance, is to give it more than instrumental status. Indeed, Heidegger repeatedly inveighs those views of language which reduce it to a mere instrument of thought or communication. Language is essential to the "clearing." (Dreyfus, H. Wrathall, M,2005:441-442). Further on, regarding the aprioristic condition of the opening of language(Erschlossenheit) in Dasein and its common points and differences in the psychological tendency of language as a reflection and conscious in Herder, Taylor says:

Heidegger stands in the Herder tradition. But he transposes this mode of thinking in his own characteristic fashion. While Herder in inaugurating the constitutive view still speaks concerning "reflection," which sounds like a form of consciousness, Heidegger turns the issue around and sees language as what opens access to meanings. Language discloses (…) the language is seen as the condition of the human world being disclosed. The disclosure is not intrapsychic, but occurs in the space between humans; indeed, it helps to define the space that humans share. (Dreyfus, H.Wrathall,M,2005:442).


Heidegger's work is essential if we want to reach a deeper understanding of language from its ontological roots. Nevertheless, nature being so complex in its complete works (Gesamtausgabe): lessons, books, conferences, seminars, notebooks, epistles, shorthand writings, even poems, make an articulated and global research seem more than necessary. We want to make a contribution for it. Keeping this in mind, we openly pose the central questions from the ones about the German philosopher's work: What are the metaphysical fundamentals that enable language? What do they consist of? How do you access them? And how are they articulated in Dasein which is the human being?

Metaphysical fundamentals of language and its degradation in everyday life


To answer these fundamental interrogations we will locate ourselves in a primordial methodological position: how is language in everyday life, not only understood as "the way Dasein simply lives day-by-day” (Heidegger, 1993:386) but how Heidegger himself claims in the last paragraph of chapter IV (Zeitlichkeit und Alltäglichkeit) of the second section of Sein und Zeit named precisely Der zeitliche Sinn der Alltäglichkeit des Daseins, essentially understood as the temporized fall of the temporality of Dasein. “(...) mit dem Titel Alltäglichkelt im Grunde nichts anderes gemeint ist als die Zeitlichkeit (...)”. (Heidegger,1984:372). This facilitates the way to access its fundamental ontological characters, and at the same time, with this, we can follow the same methodological position Heidegger had between 1919-1927. In his paper Features of a Fundamental Ontology Edward Javier Ordoñez, referring to the methodological advantages to starting the analysis with the everyday phenomenon in Heidegger's analytical existence, says: "The resource of everyday life will prevent, to some extent, the problematic character of how this entity is accessed (...)”. (Ordóñez, E: 2015). Let us begin with how language is revealed in the everyday Dasein being and how the fallen temporality drags it into its degeneration.

Language manifests, presents, names, and participates the entity in the world so it can resonate its being. Hence, we say that it ex-presses it. Meaning, it releases it for it to deploy its fundamental.  This is done from an interpretation (Auslegugn) of a respectional totality or a context of symbols which are only possible as such, through the basis of a previous comprehension of being. Thus, language viewed from this fundamental, comprehends, means and expresses the ontological entity and shifts it to the ontic level and the factual world. They represent their three fundamental moments. This articulation of understanding, with interpreting and expressing, which constitute the ontological fundamental of language, is called by Heidegger speech (Rede) (Heidegger, 1993: 184). At the beginning of Western thought, for Greeks, these three moments of language were highlighted in a sublime way, logoV (comprehension of sense), muqoV (interpret-relate) and epoV (say-express). For this reason, it is not about language being a subsequent, strange, secondary or consequent faculty of Dasein, as understood by modern thought (Lyons, 1973: 57), but that language, as far as being in the mode of understanding its own possibilities of its being-in-the-world, is, said by Heidegger’s own expression, co-original (mitürsprunglich) language. In effect, language understood, not as an interpretation of symbols and codes faculty, but as a comprehensive opening of the human being at being in the open possibilities for transcendence, allows Dasein itself as such:


Im Verstehen liegt existenzial die Seinart des Daseins als Sein-können. Dasein ist nicht ein Vorhandenes, das als Zugabe noch besitzt, etwas zu können, sondern es ist primär Möglichsein (…) Die Möglichkeit als Existenzial dagegen ist die ursprünglichste und letzte positive ontologische Bestimmheit des Daseins (…) Den phänomenalen Boden, sie überhaupt zu sehen, bietet das Verstehen als erschließendes Sein-können. (Heidegger. 1984: 143-144)



However, this understanding (Verstehen) which opens Dasein towards itself and towards the entity, does not refer to a static capture nor an information topic stored, on the contrary, it has a projective character. In other words, in it, Dasein opens determined and historical ways of the being of the entities and of itself which are patented in the significance of their world: (…) das Verstehen an ihm selbst die existenziale Struktur hat, die wir den Entwurf nennen. Es entwirft das Sein des Daseins auf sein Worumwillen ebenso ursprünglich wie auf die Bedutsamkeit als die Weltlichkeit seiner jeweiligen Welt. (Heidegger, 1984: 145). In that case, in Dasein’s everyday being mode, in which it is interpreted not from itself in a proper manner, but in an improper way from its world (Heidegger, 1993:169), such essential moments in language are far from their real and true vocation. The expression becomes gossip (Gerade). The word becomes repetition of common places and in an everyday conversation, far from its fundamental (Heidgger, 1993: 190-193). Certainly, the entity is lied to, but it is not released in its being, rather it is repressed in the vagueness of its sense; interpretation, for its part, appeals to mere conventionalisms in which the symbols do not orient to a profound mystery, to a full sense, but to pre-established codes; and comprehension –starting and decisive moment of language- does not listen directly to the entity but to what is said about it. Heidegger never loses sight of the mode in which language is given with the moment of being eminent in Dasein, whichever dominates it during their whole existence. Jar Aler expresses about this: “But the mode of the ek-sistence in which Heidegger's exposition reveals the constitutive character of language is, within the general perspective of the preparatory analytic, the average everydayness: language is an instrument to be used in social intercourse." (Cockelmans, J.1972: 50)

This phenomenon is factually possible through the insertion of the human being in a culture which is previously determined by “common” (Navia, M.2010: 129) but this is nothing more than a phenomenon ontologically determined by One (das Man) and everydayness (Alltäglichkeit) as the way of temporization fall of Dasein (Heidegger, 1993:151). In turn, the definitive cause of the fall of language in everydayness is the detachment of hearing of being-able-to-be more of Dasein and of the entities spoken of, returning to comprehension of being a median and exclusive comprehension (durchsnittlich) of what is spoken as such.

Gemäß der durchschnittlichen Vertständlichkeit, die in der beim Sichaussprechen gesprochenen Srache schon liegt, kann die mitgeteilte Rede weitgehend everstanden werden, ohne daß sich der Hörende in ein ursprünglich verstehendes Sein zum Worüber der Rede bringt. Man versteht nicht so sehr das beredete Seiende, sondern man hört schon nur auf das Gerredete als solches. Dieses wird verstanden, das Worürber nur ungefähr, obehin; man meint dasselbe, weil man das Gesagte gemeinsam in derselben Durchsnittlichkeit versteht. Heidegger, 1984:168)




From the degradation of speech as an ontological condition of language, the general interpretation of the entity is converted into manipulative cultural product and in tradition and patrimony of society. As all entities to be understood are not presented, but rather ambiguously interpreted, from the has-been (Vorhabe), in a previous way of seeing (Vorsicht), and a previous conceptualization (Vorgriff) that does not come from a full opening of Dasein (Heidegger, 1993: 174).

Language is mineralized in the native tongue, where traditional grammar represents the unconscious tool of control and domain. Its power is yet even more efficient, as the native tongue becomes the interpretation of an unconditional world, and where it confuses itself with what is real regarding real. In other words, language passed down from previous generations, introjects an interpretation of the world that is highly overwhelming and effective, that we view the world as given by these generations (Ortega and Gasset, 1970: 146). However, this previous generational interpretation is in turn determined by a historical-ontological decision regarding being.

The human being is involved and entangled in a whirlwind (Wirbel) due to the invisible halo –however, because of it, implacable- of the discursive sphere of the language which we belong to. Knowledge of the previous generation, very well praised by Durkheim, highly contributes to its domain. Nevertheless, it is our condition of freedom which leaves us paradoxically surrendered to it, as our deepest being-toward-death ricochets us toward the protection of pre-established world disclosure (Bergung), leaving us in a being-in-the-world in the improper mode of the dominating claim. Such fall and surrender are due to the fact that on a daily basis we express ourselves in a repetitive and uprooting way; we conventionally interpret through a predetermined language and we also publically understand the entity (Öffenlichkeit). Jan Aler describes the fall of language as logoV in the following way:

Logos taken in this oral form of fallness is mere banter, small talk. It is in this manner that, in the changing determination of the relation between logos and language, the mode of Being of man decides the ontological character of language (…) if one approaches a structure in its everydayness, the everydayness determines its concretization. The disqualification of the moment of wording cannot remedy this; the structure of logos is merely made ambiguous by this disqualification. (Cockelmans, J.1972:56)


Because of the preeminent phenomenon of everydayness and the fall, Dasein generally moves in an interpretation of the entity fixing its conclusions in previous intend (Vorhabe) not directly guided in a listening and confrontation of the entity itself; but in a “cultural tradition”, in a previous point of view (Vorsicht) predetermined by the tendencies of that time, and a previous conceptualization (Vorgriff), where ideas about what has been said about things in the world controls it. All true epochal things (predominating social unveiling of the entity) will be predetermined by this previous interpretative condition of the language. What is decisive here is not the direct question of the being of the entity, but the acceptance of what has been previously said about it. This acceptance determines with anticipation the appropriation of the understanding (Heidegger, 1993:174).

            It is this fall of original understanding that determines the full degeneration of the fundamentals (letting-be, temporality, truth, world disclosure) which allow all speech. Likewise, this degeneration drags down the fundamentals of the essence of language itself. In effect, manifesting the entity (apofansiV) -real vocation of language – is betrayed, due to the fact that transcendence is not given as letting-be  to the entity; temporality, instead of temporizing a future for Dasein, is dominated by the anachronism of past has-been; being-in-truth as an apophantic revelation of the entity, is only given as an ambiguity and occulting; and instead of reaching a proper view of the world (Haltungweltanschauung)  it degenerates (Entartung)  as a business (Betrieb), adaptation, and convenient agreement and shelter (Bergung). (Heidegger, 1999: pp.381-386) .


These ontological conditions are the ones which have allowed in the modern domain of world public interpretation, manifested in language and reinforced by techniques such as control and violence towards the entity, to apply its domain and power (Aussage), as the only place for truth. Regarding these factual conditions about this ontological and epistemological twist of the modification of truth manifested in technical terms, Blanco Ilari expresses:

This abandonment (of basic certainties of everydayness. N.A.) marks a distance, more pronounced over time, between the language of those who still speak doxa and the one used by those who have reached the height of the episteme (…) the strange thing about "truth" is crystallized in the discursive creation of idiolects who are more and more exclusive. The “reality” hidden in appearances, is expressed in a special language, hyper-technified, whose code can only be managed by those who have dared to get rid of natural language. (Blanco Ilari, Juan.2015:28)


The statement represents the exclusive form, formalized and uniform to interpret the entity, characterized by the predicative determination of a feature of the being of the subject, which is abstracted over all other things, but the richness of the totality of the meanings from where these interpretative predicates are taken from, is not taken into consideration (Heidegger, 1993:180-181).

Interpretation, understood as a reference of the entity to the structures of “in terms of” loses with the statement the rich world of references to which the what of the entity is sent. Even this loss experienced by the interpretation is the essence of the statement itself:

Die Als-Struktur der Auslegung hat eine Modifikation erfahren. Das “Als” greift in seiner Funktion der Zueignung des Verstandenen nicht mehr aus in eine Bewandtnisganzheit. Es ist bezüglich seiner Möglichkeiten der Artikulation von Verweisungs bezügen von der Beduetsamkeit, als welche die Umweltlichkeit konstituiert, abgeschnitte. Das “Als” wird in die gliechmäßige Ebene des nur Vorhandenen zurückgedräangt. Es sinkt herab zur Struktur des bestimmenden Nur-sehen-lassens von Vorhandenem. Diese Nivellierung des ursprünglichen “Als” der umsichtigen Auslegung zum Als der Vorhandenheitsbestimmung ist der Vorzug der Aussage. So gewinnt sie die Möglichkeit puren hinsehenden Aufweisens. (Heidegger,1984:158).



Thus, the entity is “detached from the world” (Entweltlichung): “(…) every time that sense is further from the origin, it wins and loses something at the same time: it becomes more and more explicit (this represents a win), but it loses its mundane condition, meaning, it loses the wealth of the multiple relations of sense which enclose practical life.” (Bertorello, 2008:128). The theory of judgment, based on the statement, becomes the modern idol through which only and exclusively the entity must appear in. This must be understood only in this way in terms of objectivity. The entity is reduced to Object. This expression, in this case, means the apophantic way in which the entity must exclusively appear. In this ontic condition, the human being is dragged and deprived of its most proper world. This phenomenon belongs to everydayness essence itself. However, it reaches its peak in modern times. Juan Blanco Ilari expresses about this:


The subject who migrates is an uninterested subject. Its function is to make all things objects of knowledge; that is to say, to establish "uninterested observation" as a relational pattern. The epistemic imperative of abandoning the subject embodied, in the realm of doxa, to devote the epistemic subject (universal and necessary) is born with philosophy and is radicalized in modern times.” (Blanco Ilari, Juan, 2015: 27)



Moving on with the analysis, we can pose that in this dimension, modern mathematical logic and grammatical syntax, in fact, even the comprehension of philosophy in solely apophantic terms as we have posed, exert the control of how it should manifest in its truth. Truth, which efficiently serves the experimental application of science and modern technology. Accordingly, when language becomes a mere tool and technique, loses its original vocation, meaning it no longer manifests the being, it only names and in-forms about the entities. In his conference given on April 2nd, 1936 named Holderlin and the Essence of Poetry (Hölderlin und das Wesen der Dichtung) Martin Heidegger criticizes this modern comprehension of language as a mere instrument:

Die Sprache ist nicht nur ein Werkzeug, das der Mensch neben vielen anderen auch besitzt, sondern die Sprache gewährt, uberhaupt erst die Möglichkeit, inmitten der Offenheit von Seiendem zu stehen. Nur woSprache, da ist Welt (...)Die Sprache ist ein Gut in einem ursprünglicheren Sinne (…) sie leistet Gewähr , daß der Mensch als geschichtlicher sein kann.Die Sprache ist nicht ein verfügbares Werkzeug, sondern dasjenige Ereignis, das über die höchste Möglichkeit des Menschseins verfügt.(Heidegger, 1981: 37-38)



Indeed, from this perspective, from the analysis of the degeneration of the ontological fundamental of language, the historical morphosyntactic analysis of modern Indian-European languages, where the loss of participles and future infinitives, the predominance of the indicative verbal mode and the loss of the indicative verbal tenses (antepreterito) and subjunctive (future imperfect) are understood in first instance. Meaning, they are not overlooked as a series of “curious” and isolated tendencies, object of linguistics as science, but rather it is recognized in the depth of all of these, the decisive influence of modern world interpretation, which views in the factual-objectual the only mode of unhiding and manifestation of the entity’s being.

Nonetheless, is this the only way an entity can manifest itself? What if we discovered that listening for being-with as a longing, as a mode of being proper of Dasein, we could unveil a much deeper and real way of manifesting the entity instead of just in the mere abstraction of the entity as a statement? And from this perspective, What form of language could offer us the proper perspective for a deeper understanding of the entity? We need this deepening because, in effect, what is revealed in the statement is the insufficiency of a fixed and empty temporality, a monosemic, and a pre-established interpretation exclusively objectual of the world. Only this explains the success with which logic has been applied and controlled in the state or modern science. Nonetheless, in the depth of the being-with listening as a longing, a truth of the entity is hidden in such a transcendent way, that it escapes any attempt of manipulation coming from the factual world.

Let us observe, as follows, how everyday language can retake its pristine genesis and fundamental vocation through the phenomenon of Poiesis and the reflection surrounding listening: as we have said, it is only possible through through the internal memory of the beginning (Heidegger, 2006: 50). In them, the transcendence, the revelation of the being, temporality and world disclosure should be openly manifested in order that the question of the being can be open in a factual Dasein

From degeneration of language in everydayness to its fullness in poetic language


All language refers to a manifestation of the being of the entity. When this is accomplished, its more original vocation, the saying is foremost a poetic one, since naming things in their essence it pro-duces them, takes them to the being creative. Thus, poetic language is the original language (Ursprache). It is from this dimension, from which all language originates and, hence, from which all language comprehension attempt acquires its full meaning:


Dichtung ist nicht nur ein begleitender Schmuck des Daseins, nicht nur eine zeitweitlige Begeisterung oder gar nur eine Erhitzung und Unterhaltung. Dichtung ist der tragende Grund der Geschichte und deshalb auch nicht nur eine Erscheinung der Kultur und erst recht nicht der blöße “Ausdruck” einer “Kulturseele” (…) Dichtung ist das stiefende Nennen des Seins und des Wesens alles Dinge- kein beliebiges Sagen, wodurch erst all das ins Offene tritt, was wir dann in der Alltagssprachen bereden und verhandeln. Daher nimmt die Dichtung niemals die Sprache als an vorhandenen Wekstoff auf, sondern die Dichtung selbst ermöglich erts die Sprache.Dichtung is die Ursprache eines geschichtlichen Volkes. Also muß umgekehrt das Wesen der Sprache aus dem Wesen der Dichtung verstanden werden. (Heidegger,1981:42-43)



How language manifests itself from everydayness, we have previously posed that this degenerates and its degeneration is patented in its three constituent moments, namely, in ambiguous and unfounded speaking, in the conventional grammatical meaning and public interpretation. This fall of language, as we have said, does not come from itself, but from the metaphysical fundamentals which make it possible. The fall is, overall, the one of Dasein in its being-in-the-world. (Heidegger, 1993: 198). However, the possibility that it retakes and recompiles its fundamental being, meaning, the one in which the question for the being becomes determining for its historical-factual being-in-the-world. This possibility refers to the listening of the being when it allows being called upon itself by the call of fundamentals. This listening implies a theoretical-contemplative attitude, a free being-with (sein-lassen) (Heidegger, 1996: 112) which fully opens Dasein to the being of the entities in an interrogative attitude. It is only this listening understood as being-with, the metaphysical fundamental of language, thus, what makes it possible “The true experience of language is not in saying, but in listening (…) The real experience of language lies in listening to the words of the being’s silence (…) in listening, man is a patient and only in this way does one have a profound experience of language.” (Navia, W. 2010: 140-141)8. Thus, when placing itself in this essential ontological and foundational dimension, the human being rescues language and brings it to its essence: it comprehends, significantly interprets and says the being of the entities, hence, it recreates, transfigures and poetically names them. In effect, theoretical attitude itself (Qewria), understood originally as contemplation and fundamental protoaction, it is referring to a longing-listening of what fundaments and makes possible language as such.

If human beings stop for one moment their everydayness, among these the continuing need for gossip, and direct themselves to direct attentive listening of things, only then will it be possible for these to manifest with their own light (fainoV). This can only precisely happen because the essence of language is not something ontic as Plato thought, nor is it a product of speculation of the human mind, as proposed by empiricism and modern epistemology, but the enlightening (Lichtung) of the being from which all entities become clear:


One crucial point for Heidegger is that the clearing cannot be identified with any of the entities which showed up in it. It is not be explained by them as something they cause, or one of their properties, or as grounded in them (…) So the clearing is Dasein-related yet not Dasein-controlled. It is not Dasein's doing. (…) Heidegger's position can be seen from one point of view as utterly different from both Platonism and subjectivism because it avoids onticizing altogether; from another point of view, it can be seen as passing between them to a third position which neither can imagine, one which is Dasein-related, but not Dasein-centered. (Dreyfus, H.Wrathall,M,2005:44-45).


            This is the essence of language, its poetic dimension, from which the human being transcends the conceptual schematics of its time and from which all language understood as social use and all grammar, it is fed as a creating source that flows its waters surreptitiously. “Human language responds to an instinct of poeticizing, as a creating production, which affirms facing the animal world, and at the same time the philosopher, artist, in other words, Poet, in the original sense of Poiesis. It opens new courses of action when liberating it from the yoke of logic." (Visbal, Marta de la Vega, 2010: 214). The word becomes fsiV because it opens the being; logoV because it reunites in the essential, in what founds and gives meaning; and apeiron, because instead of retaining, solidifying and marking limits (defining) to the entity in a determined essence (language-lexic-grammar) it releases it in change of limitations, it frees it and takes it to the presence, and it also presents it in completely new forms and possibilities of being.

Being-with -understood as protoaction founded in the care of freedom9-, in which listening is called upon by the being, contributes and brings to light the fundamental of the entities, which initiates them and makes possible all encounters; live, real and updating presence of things, where all anachronisms of One is overcome by the encounter with what is always new; the revelation of its essence, not as substances but as phenomena always willing to hide-unhide; and the comprehensive attitude, not as a passive adaptation of the world received, but as a creative and pro-ductive attitude in constant transfiguration and reconfiguration. The being occurs in the world throughout the word:


You, sign of the enjoyment

sound of the suffering

Candor of his tenderness;

Tear of the silence,

Fist juncture of the closest proximity

Return freely

To your crown

And dance the pain of the Being

In the home of the world

Whose light is consumed

While illuminating

All that comes from it




            The fullness of the metaphysical fundamentals of language carried out by the appellation-contemplative of the being, in which the question about the being as eminent dimension of the being-in-the-world of a factual Dasein has been released, it transforms language itself in its essential moments. It has been passed through the resolution (Erschlossenheit) and a destruction of apophantic to hermeneutic logos:

La destruction de la logique, toujours dejà uniment phénoménologico-hérmeneutique, s'applique à l'ipse aliéné par das Man, parlé par la lingua aliena du On commandé par un concept traditionnel de la vérité propositionnelle qui réfère, en dernière instance, à un temps nivelé,axè sur l'être intérpreté- vécu- comme Anwesenheit. (Sommer,C, 2014: 134)


            Meaning that in this dimension of strangeness (atopoV) awe-contemplating  (qaumazein) and perplexity (diaporhsanteV) in which  the dictatorship of everydayness is broken and Aristotle himself had long ago, catalogued in his book Metaphysics as the fundamental principle of all knowledge, (Aristotle, Metaphysics: 76) understanding takes deep from the being itself, no longer in a mediated way, it is no longer based in the has-been, but in the could-be which is projected by the entities from the presence and revelation of their own essence; the interpretation-meaning is not limitedly supported on a convention of symbols, but it points out (semhuein) through its own means, intimate and metaphorical, and, hence, polisemic; and the expression releases the entity in its being and presents it from what it dictates, not the public interpretation of reality, rather the saying offered and is revealed in all listening and contemplative human silence of the entity.

Being human

Who knows silence in which the world retracts?

Who dares inhabit where bliss slips by?

Who calls sudden their year?

To whom does the favorable occurrence lean?

Who corresponds the poem?11



            In that case, if the poetic dimension of language, -rescuing from listening language itself from its technical and instrumental conception- opens Dasein and places it in the full opening of the question for the being, meaning, this is found in an understanding of being transcendent. This transcendence or understanding of the being, has three fundamental ontological features: logoV, fusiV, apeiron, fundamental problems of the first Greek philosophers. Hence, to take the liberation of the question of the being to its fullest it will be necessary to listen with devotion the saying  of Western thought12, assuming once again a meditation, an interiorizing memory  of these essential moments of the being from a new perspective and at once linked in a unique and hermeneutic way to the classic tradition understood as occurred history that up to now determines us without us even knowing (Heidegger, 2006: 44-52). From this reopening and return (nostoV) of the question for the being, the fundamentals which make the humble and daily miracle of language possible are patented, not as a “thing” or “tool”, but as one of the fundamental ontological features of the human being. However, further research of this nature highly exceeds the limits of this work.


Final reflections

            The understanding of the relation between language and metaphysics in Heidegger must be done from the horizon of life and complete work of the great German master. Likewise, as a master, Heidegger must be interpreted taking into account two fundamental sides: 1. The public field where he birthed his work, meaning, his published work, like Sein und Zeit, and his conferences, which are characterized by exposing general guidelines; 2. The letters with his friends and in particular with Hannah Arendt, who represents a bridge between the depth where the master retracted himself in his loneliness and retirement in Todnauberg and in the paths towards the meadows. 3. The personal and solitary level of Heidegger as master, researcher and philosopher: let us say an achromatic Heidegger, from where all his deepest teachings and thoughts are deployed. His famous lessons and black notebooks (Schwarz Hefte) belong to this side, and the stenography of his disciples. This implies that all methods for the understanding of a problematic between language and ontology in Heidegger should always take into account this fundamental feature of his life and work. The public thought of Heidegger should be focused on the size and depth of his intimate work as master, friend and lover. This final side is much deeper and of a higher transcendence in philosophical terms, if we take into account that most of Gesamtausgabe has not yet been translated into Spanish13.


            This is why regarding the access way to the problem, we have used a synthetic hermeneutic about the fundamental existential not only posed in Sein und Zeit, but also in this deeper level of his lessons. In that case, this method would be useless if not understood, besides, these existentials as themselves, meaning, in interaction, coaction and movement. Aspect, in which Jan Aler, as it mentioned before, we considered a loyal follower. Without losing sight of these methodological guidelines as an access form to the problematic of the origin of language in metaphysics, let us try to answer in a clear way the questions which guided this research:

Which are the metaphysical fundamentals of language and how are they articulated with one another? First of all, the understanding of Dasein, which is only possible through listening (Hören), but since listening itself means being-on-hold (Heidegger) and a form of care (Sorge), then this means that listening itself as being-on-hold is time: in the form of a memory and also as an anticipated projection of the presence, of a parousia (parousia).

Time in the mode of the resolution, as commemorative and projective temporality of the presentation of the entities, releases the human being in an enraptured way in the transcendent encounter with the being, and it poetizes it, it fills it with the endlessness of the being, and only in this way the entities can reach the word: through overabundance.  The problem with our understanding of everyday language is that it refers to an emission, expression, symbols, codes and grammar, while what we are presenting with Heidegger is that language is above all listening, silence, being-on-hold for the encounter of the being, the moment when the deep question for this arises. And referring to metaphor of don Miguel Unamuno, just as from the tree we cannot see the roots, but we do see its foliage, like from language what we perceive every day are the factual and sensorial expressions in it. Anachronistic language used in a more formal everyday routine, including in many occasions degraded scientific language, like the one from a deep spring, which nurtures itself silently and mysteriously from that constant renewal in this metaphysical fundamental of comprehension, which without, when completely separating, it petrifies and empties itself. In such a way, language reaches speaking not by shortage but by overabundance. The human being sheds as he is impregnated with the being and it only belongs to it. In doing so, simultaneously, it creates a world, reconfigures world disclosure in which it has been born and trapped in and renews it historically, that is to say, it makes the freedom of the being happen (Ereignis)  in it, and also this happening is one of truth, a revelation (a-lhqeia), parousia (parousia), this is, presence from the rupture of everydayness: thus, authentic and resolved temporality makes the being-on-hold possible, and at once, this makes listening possible, listening to understanding, understanding to interpretation and this one to the expression of language. The expression takes the being to the world, but for this to occur, there must always be a rupture from everydayness, in other words, liberation and return (ana-lusisV) from and regarding the mode of the temporality fallen from Dasein. But methodologically speaking, the resolution of authentic temporality is given at the same time that the historical occurrence of truth in a world disclosure, free and independent of all generational dictatorship. In this sense, temporality-world disclosure-truth-historicity cannot be understood linearly according to a simplifying law of cause-effect, how Dasein usually interprets its world, but from a dynamic articulation, cofounding and original, just as Heidegger proposes in the initial methodological guidelines of Sein und Zeit.

Regeneration of language and its return to its full sense from the objectivity of predicative formalism and from the ambiguity of factual everydayness does not imply a distancing of the entities, but contrary to this, the regeneration and the re-rooting of the human being from a transcendent sense, but in turn, inmanent and complete. “The authentic ex-sistence does not hover above everydayness but is a special mode of rooting therein.”(Cockelmans,J.1972:59)14.


            We believe that the practical repercussions of these considerations about metaphysical origins of language are numerous. Nevertheless, we believe that two of them outstand in an essential way. 1. Only understood language in its essence as silence is one which allows the intimate encounter of two human beings, it is the loving root, in any of its forms of love in which it is manifested. This allows the continuity of all human communities without being a society and it would degrade in a grotesque horde. 2. Since the deepest vocation of language is no to in-form the entity15, in other words, fill it of superflux meaning that has nothing to do with its essence, but on the other hand, ex-press and free the being of all entities, then it un-reifies it, it de-mineralizes it of all labels that anachronize and degenerate in mechanical repetition of the generational transmission. This opens the fullness of world disclosure to the dimension of beauty, what gives strength, the unfathomable and the infinite, which Plato describes in his sixth book of his Politeia, this is agaqoV just as a-mecaneton, opens human beings towards what they cannot and never will be able to manipulate because it comes from it and elevates and is beyond all entities: epekeina thV ousiaV presbeia kai dunamei uperecontoV. (Burnet, 1903: 509 b) However, the path laid out and proposed for us by Heidegger is very broad, endless and dense. Despite having gone through diverse aspects regarding metaphysical principles that fundament language, this problem is not fully depleted. Instead, new unavoidable questions arise which we have not been able to approach, for example, the relation between a community of determined people by dialogue and how these metaphysical principles of language would factually be delivered among them. The importance of a doxastic community, for a dialogue to exist, has been posed by Blanco Ilari:

In the field of human affairs, it is necessary to be part of the polis and to be nourished and conformed by its uses and customs to be able to take part in discussions (…) dialogue is impossible without this requirement of pre-sociability, because basic beliefs which sustain it are not present. It is not about a mere postulate, but rather an elemental phenomenological fact; without a linking element there can be no possible dialogue. (Blanco Ilari, Juan, 2015: 29)


On the other hand, regarding pending goals, we believe that for a full understanding of the problem of language from a phenomenological perspective of Heidegger’s work, an interpretation plenior is necessary, meaning, going beyond the great German philosopher’s interpretations, because his life was not enough to elucidate in the depth of a complete landscape, a more articulate and global understanding of his fundamental aspects can be offered, where pressing aspects such as world disclosure and language, time and language, truth and language, among others can be contemplated and related. And above all how he himself in one part of Die Frage nach dem Ding, posed and applied in hermeneutics regarding Kant: to be able to understand his work mainly in what the author does not express, but leaves reluctant. Thus, we consider that it is not mandatory to restrict to an orthodox interpretation of Heidegger’s work, but to go beyond and reconfigure from our own contributions. However, this implies a very challenging work, because much of his work is yet to be addressed, translated and published even in its original language. As is well known, Heidegger’s complete work (Gesamtausgebe) is quite broad and requires a delicate use and knowledge of German, as well as Greek and Latin. We should not conform ourselves with Spanish translations, but rather realize a careful and complex hermeneutic work, and proceed to the original sources whenever possible17. Hence, it is also necessary, to avoid distorting the methodological horizon of Heidegger’s language, to carry out a deep revision of modern philosophers such as Kant and Hegel; medieval philosophers such as Saint Agustin, Saint Thomas, William of Ockham and Eckhardt,   intam oftinance of a doxasticaosis on the fate of a broken dialogueGreek philosophers, Heraclitus, Parmenides and Plato (specially the problem of a-lhqeia), and in particular Aristotle, who Heidegger criticizes about the domain of the apophantic statement but takes his fundamental achievements to analyze factual life from where language comes. We emphasize in the path remaining regarding the problem of world disclosure, an aspect which is currently slightly addressed by the critic and heideggerian exegetes, a topic which we also consider essential in the understanding of how language reaches speech and from what perspective and criteria18.

            Another –perhaps the most important- problem, which needs elucidation, is the relation between language with temporality, a fundamental understanding horizon of Dasein for all structures of it as explained in Sein un Zeit (Cockelmans,J.1972:45,) and also with the affective disposition or humor (Befindlichkeit) present in all understanding. For this, we would like to continue Jan Aler's pioneering research. The relation between the authentic Dasein and literature, as a full mode of language is another topic we consider unavoidable because of the ethic connotations it implies to the human being. Aspects we will attempt to address in further research.


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1 These reflections about language, product of the lessons of the lecture Introduction to Philosophy 2012-2014, became part of chapter V of a greater research called The liberation of the Question for the Being, presented as an extraordinary promotion work for Associate and were carried out with the sponsorship of  Centro de Investigaciones Contexto y Praxis Socioeducativa (CIPSE) affiliated to Instituto Luis Beltrán Prieto Figueroa of Universidad Pedagógica Experimental Libertador.

2 Ph. D. Associated Professor part of Instituto Luis Beltrán Prieto Figueroa de la Universidad Pedagógica Experimental Libertador. Barquisimeto, Venezuela. Affiliated to Centro de Investigación Contexto y Praxis Socioeducativa (CICPSE). Area code 3001.

3 Jan Aler (1910-1992) dutch, was an eminent professor of aesthetic and philosophy of culture in the University of Amsterdam. He studied in Freiburg from 1938, very closely to M. Heidegger from who he was influenced. The work we use here is his essay Heidegger's Conception of Language in Being and Time published as the second chapter of the first part of the compilated and translated work by Joseph Cockelmans in 1972, On Heidegger and Language.

4 We use the word metaphysics in a rigorous sense as those deductive principles that decisively link all entities with and from what essences it. Throughout this research, we alternate this word with the expression ontology. Cf. Grondin, J. Introducción a la Metafísica. Prologue.p.17.

5 Regarding public opinion of the spring of 1968, Heidegger writes terrified and pessimistic to Hanna Arendt: "Is there still an "alternative" to that which is so sinister called "public opinion", better said: Is there a measurement for essential things before that chatter of "alternatives"? Why on earth must the human being pass until it realizes that it does not make itself? Messkirch. April 12, 1968.Mail.Herder.Barcelona.2000.pp.158

6 In April 1964, Heidegger writes to Hanna Arendt: “after conversations we have had in the paths around Zähringen, you know how this question decisively (the essence of language) occupies the center of my thoughts, which without, meditation between thought and poetry would be without any land.” Arendt,H.Heidegger,M.2000:134)


7 However, we do not completely agree with Blanco Ilari, his claim that this imperative is born with philosophy itself, we believe that the form of speech in Anaximandro, Parmenides and Empedocles, to quote some of the first philosopher thinkers, is far from apophatic and closer, even in some cases identifies itself as poetic. To clarify this problematic, to an extent, we would have to deepen in the problem which meant episteme for Greeks, for example in Plato, for whom it was not implied as claimed before, a radical distancing of everyday entities. Cf. books V and VI of his Politeia, The Sophist or The Banquet, for example. But the topic is considerably challenging to present it here. We tend to conceive the problem of distancing, not only from a historical-factual perspective but also and existential ontology whose roots would be the problem of temporality (Zeitlichkeit) and everydayness (Alltäglichkeit) in the form posed by Heidegger in Being and Time. Nevertheless, we think that his criticism to Rhetoric as a form of distancing is very interesting. Cf. Blanco Ilari, Juan. p.28.


8 The fact that for Heidegger silence (Stille) and listening (Hören) was just about a mere objective and thematic concern was demonstrated in the incredible source of resources of the  language in the letters, during more than 50 years, to his beloved Hanna Arendt, which would require many other works. Here is an example of one: "My dear love, your silence in response to my story of my activity –we are both people who have trouble speaking- but who also understand silence." M. Heidegger to Hanna Arendt, when she was his young student in Marburg, May 13, 1925. Mail. P.31.HerderBarcelona.2000. Twenty-five years later, in the reencounter stage, he claims: "Hanna: listening frees. That you obeyed the voice dissolves everything in the in good and gives the new security of retractatio." Friburg, February 15 1950. Even at the end of the 60s, Heidegger's suggestions, concerning the topic of language about silence, is shown by Hanna Arendt's reply in November 1967: "Dear Martin. Thank you for your letters, thank you for the "examples" of the transitive use of silence (it is pretty, and I believe I understood it instantly(…)" New York. November 27 a 1967. Ibid. p. 154

9 In his superb lesson in the winter of 1929 Einleitung in die Philosophie, Heidegger expresses “This ‘being-with/do’  is only possible in the cure or care (…) and, however, that being-with, that Sein-lassen, is a doing if the highest and most original kind which can be conceived and is only possible on the basis of the intimate essence of our existence, namely, freedom.” (Heidegger, 1996: 112)

10 Arendt, Hannah, Heidegger.Martin.Mail. Ed.Herder.Barcelona.2000.p.103.


12 Regarding these Indian-European roots of the word ‘say' and its relation with truth, Ortega and Gasset express: "Regarding the inner Latin voice and ours –from here verbum, word- but not any saying, but the most solemn and serious to say, a religious saying in which we place God as witness to our saying, overall, an oath.” (Ortega and Gasset,1970: 139-140)


13 From his cabin in Todnauberg, full of Kierkegaard, Holderlin’s readings and The Magic Mountain of Thomas Mann, Heidegger writes to Hanna Arendt in the fall of 1925: Fall has come here with its cold nights and wonderfully sunny days. I have submerged myself with a great deal of energy in my work, and I can tackle things without the proper obstacles of the profession (…) I have forgotten the aspect of the "world," and I will feel like a mountain dweller coming down to the city for the first time. But in this solitude, capable of producing unimaginable forces, human things also seem simpler and stronger and lose their most dismal element- everydayness. We must move over and over to the point where everything is new as if it were the first day- and this is generated by the productive work of isolation. Often, when I am overloaded, I rush to the nearest mountain and let the storm roar in my ears. I need the proximity to nature; and when, situation which occurs frequently, I contemplate at two in the morning, finishing my work, the calm of the valley from above and feel the starry sky near it- I am then only activity and life.

(Heidegger, 2000:46). Not even his beloved escaped from this necessary retreat which is also the most essential encounter and listening. A few months later, in winter, he writes again: I have forgotten you –not because of indifference nor because certain external circumstances have intruded, but because I had to forget you and I will forget you every time I take the path of the last and concentrated work. It is no such thing of hours or days, but a process which separates for weeks and months and later on it sends. And getting away from all that is human and all relationships is, in terms of creation, the greatest thing I know among human experiences (…) Your heart is ripped out of your body while you are completely aware. (Heidegger, 2000:51)


14 A beautiful and patent example of it lies in a piece of art, which is in the spine of our Spanish literature, hidden in the deep and ontological essence of Quijote, where Alonso Quijana, who sees his surroundings sad and worn, when he comes to that madness that Plato praises in Fedro, takes away their patina, and to understand them projectively in a full and elevated sense. Young Rimbaud’s proposal to take down all the senses to penetrate in intuitive poetry also acquires from a particular reading in Heideggerian hermeneutic code, some very meaningful connotations. Regarding the importance of literature in Heidegger’s thought and the opening of Dasein, Jan Aler expresses something very beautiful: “What literature is able to accomplish is what Heidegger is concerned with: literature discloses ek-sistence; it communicates possibilites of moodness. It brings man to the there of his Being-there.” (Cockelmans,J.1972:61)

15 This should be applied and repeated, more and more on a global scale, for all knowledge-including the most acute researchers- the term information, is not just mere coincidence, trend or whim, but the symptom of trivialization of language itself and its current superficialization.

16 In 2014, it caused a world-wide commotion, the publishing of the famous, but not very well known in the public eye, Schwarzen Hefte, from the period of the Third Reich.

17 To understand how the philosopher portrayed himself as very cautious and apprehensive about the misinterpretation in other languages of his work, in particular in Latin America, refer to the letters to Anna Arendt. In one of them Hanna Arendt advises: “In Latin American countries, they translate without asking anything presented to them.”21/04/1954. Mail.Hannah Arendt-Martin Heidegger. Herder, Barcelona.2000.Barcelona.2nd  ed.

18 For an update on new research about M. Heidegger, we refer to the excellent Bulletin heideggérien  from  the Centres d’Études phénoménologique de l’Université catholique du Louvain and the Centre d’herméneutique phénomenologique de l’Université Paris-Sorbonne, founded at the beginning of 2010 by Sylvain Camilleri and Christophe Perrin. This publication is offered to the public and updated every 1st of March in various languages including, among others, German, French, Spanish, Italian, English, Japanese, Arabic, and Mandarin.