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GA19: Platão e Aristóteles

sexta-feira 21 de abril de 2017

This past, to which our lectures are seeking access, is nothing detached from us, lying far away. On the contrary, we are this past itself. And we are it not   insofar as we explicitly cultivate the tradition   and become friends of classical antiquity, but, instead, our philosophy and science live on these foundations, i.e., those of Greek philosophy, and do so to such an extent that we are no longer conscious of it: the foundations have become obvious Precisely in what we no longer see, in what has become an everyday matter, something is at work that was once the object of the greatest spiritual exertions ever undertaken in Western history. The goal of our interpretation   of the Platonic dialogues is to take what has become obvious and make it transparent in these foundations. To understand history cannot mean anything else than to understand ourselves—not in the sense that we might establish various things about ourselves, but that we experience what we ought to be. To appropriate a past means to come to know oneself as indebted to that past The authentic possibility to be history itself resides in this, that philosophy discover it is guilty of an omission, a neglect, if it believes it can begin anew, make things easy for itself, and let itself be stirred by just any random philosopher. But if this is true, i.e., if history means something such as this for spiritual existence, the difficulty of the task of understanding the past is increased. If we wish to penetrate into the actual philosophical work of Plato   w’e must be guaranteed that right from the start we are taking the correct path of access. But that would mean coming across something [hat precisely does not simply lie there before us. Therefore, we [11-12] need a guiding line. Previously it was usual to interpret the Platonic philosophy by proceeding from Socrates   and the Presocratics to Plato. We wish to strike out in the opposite direction, from Aristotle   back to Plato. This way is not unprecedented. It follows the old principle of hermeneutics, namely that interpretation should proceed from the clear into the obscure. We will presuppose that Aristotle understood Plato. Even those who have only a rough acquaintance with Aristotle will see from the level of his work that it is no bold a station to maintain that Aristotle understood Plata No more than it is to say in general on the question of understanding that the later ones always understand their predecessors better than the predecessors understood themselves. Precisely here lies the element of creative research, that in what is most decisive this research does not understand itself. If we wish to penetrate into the Platonic philosophy, we will do so with Aristotle as the guiding line. That implies no value judgment on Plato. What Aristotle said is what Plato placed at his disposal, only it is said more radically and developed more scientifically. Aristotle should thus prepare us for Plato, point us in the direction of the characteristic questioning of the two Platonic dialogues Sophist and Philebus. And this preparation will consist in the question of λόγος   [logos] as άληθε  ύειν [aletheuein  ] in the various domains of öv [on] and άεί [aei] as well as of the ενδέχεται άλλως [endechetai allos]. [1] (p. 7-8)

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[1Aristotle. Nic. Eth. VI. 2. 1139a6ff. and 3, 1139b20ff.