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Heidegger: On Becoming Self Liberated Through the Manifestation of Appearance

By Rudolph Bauer, Ph.D., Diplomate in Clinical Psychology, A.B.P.P.


There is similarity of the theme of becoming self liberated through the manifestation of appearance in both dzogchen and Heideggarian phenomenology. There is this similarity between the dzogchen meditative awareness tradition as articulated by the 14th century Tibetan master Longchenpa and the phenomenologist of 20th century philosophy Martin Heidegger. This paper will speak to Heidegger’s understanding of  Being manifesting the appearance of phenomena and the corresponding self liberation.

Richard Capobianco in his text Engaging Heidegger describes how Ereignis is another name for Being itself. Ereignis means in essence manifestation or manifesting.  Heidegger is focused on Being  as Ereignis. Being and manifestation are the same. There is this manifestation of the temporal spatial emerging of beings in their beingness and the spontaneously presencing of what is present. Being is the pure giving of what is given.  The giveness of phenomena of appearance. Beyond this giveness of appearance there is the giveness of pure openness.  The phenomenological openess is what is within the Dzogchen tradition described as dharmakaya or ground of being or emptiness. This dharmakaya or ground of being is not a thing or an entity. Through this no-thingness everything and anything arises.

Being itself is not a being. Being is the manifesting or is the givingness of Beingness to beings. Being brings beings forth into actuality. Being manifests beings, Being manifests  appearance and phenomena. Being conceals itself in its revelation. Being both conceals and reveals itself as aletheia. To understand Being in itself and of itself is to understand Being without beings. This Being is no-thingness and this no-thingess is the manifestating of phenomena and the appearance of phenomena. The appearance of beings and all things is the manifestation of no- thingness which is the base as Being and the base of beings. The very character of Being is the manifestation of beings coming into Being. The beingness of Being brings forth beings into their beingness. There is this emerging and self-arising of Being as beings and the appearing of beings or presencing of beings. The nature of Being is shared by all beings and things.

Within all beings there is difference and oneness at the same time. There is the duality of infinite singular beings and the nonduality of Being manifesting with and through all the beings. Being is the unconcealing and the revelation of the presencing of beings. Being allows beings to come into presence. Being gives beingness to beings. To experience a being is to experience the nature of Being itself manifesting within and as a being. Being is the ground of beings and the source of the beingness of all beings and things.  To experience the being of a being is to experience the beingness of Being itself.

Heidegger’s understanding is similar to dzogchen in that Heidegger is emphasizing the giving or the manifesting of presence of Being as beings. This manifestation is the manifestation of the ground of being becoming beings. Heidegger   in his seminar Time and Being focuses our attention not only what is present (the being of the phenomena in its sheer presence is Beingness) but focuses us on the experiencing and the perceiving of the pure coming into presence itself. This Being (dharmakaya) is manifesting beings. The manifestation is the nature of the ground of being and this manifestation allows beings and Being to be of the same nature although there is difference in that Being is not a being.  This experience of manifesting is the dynamic of liberation.

There is this unceasing movingness of all things into and out of presence. This appearing and disappearing of phenomena is the very manifestion of nature of the ground of Being. The nature of the ground is both revealing and manifesting as well as disappearing and concealing. The ground is both illuminating and obscuring. The ground of Being gives and brings beings into appearing as presence. We have this capacity to experience beings both as subjects and objects. We can experience   individuals in their separateness and we have the capacity to experience beings within the   manifestation of the ground manifesting them. We can experience manifesting. The ground gives what is present in its presentness. What manifest itself  in  the inner beingness of beings is Being itself. In experiencing the manifestation we can experience the nonduality of BEING  indivisble within the duality of the beings

This aletheia is the ever prevailing power of the presence of all beings and things becoming and disappearing. There is this temporal showing or shining forth of beings and things. There is this manifesting and opening and shining forth of beings to us. Just as being is manifesting so beings are themselves manifested by Being itself. Being is manifested both as the being and the  beings activity. Being is manifested activity. The presence of things is beyond the things meaning to us. All things show themselves to us and are nonconceptually more to us then their signified meaning. Presence is beyond signified meaning.

The radiance of Being manifesting beings and within beings is an intimate aspect of Heidegger’s phenomenology of manifestation. Capobianco describes this radiance of manifestation using Heidegger’s commentary on Holderin on Natures Gleaming. The first line of the Holderin’s poem is “Natures gleaming is higher revealing”. This theme of light reflects Heidegger, understands light and space as qualities of Being and its manifestations.

Heidegger and Holderlin loved the word glanzen.  The word glanzen means shining, glistening, glimmering, glittering, glowing. Nature (Being) does not simply shine it gleams. This gleaming is a luminous revealing and appearing. Nature brings everything into being and presence.  Everything manifest to us as nature as Being.  Within presencing the presencing is shining, gleaming and glimmering. This is the radiance of appearance, the radiance of the manifestation of appearing.

For Heidegger Being is manifestation. Nature which is oneness or nondual is simply Being unfolding and manifesting all beings. Being is manifesting itself as singular individual discrete things. Being manifests to us within and as singular beings. Nature or Being shows itself as a being, as singular. We experience nature and being through the way we see things and into things. Being manifests itself through the phenomena of beings. Through the very presencing of beings we experience the presencing of Being itself. Nature or Being is the splendor that infuses everything. The seeing of nature is different than the seeing of things. We see the nature of Being in the singularity of a being. Presencing presences itself as within singular presences.  Being which is no-thingness is manifesting things and beings. Being in itself can be unapparent. Through appearance within awareness Being becomes apparent. This means that Being is not a being and yet Being is indivisible from all beings. Being is the no-thingness that shines out brightly to those who can see the manifestation of being as Being itself.

To be able to see or gaze through all that is present, in all of its luster and to be able to experience the source of all that is present, presenting itself, self presencing is self liberation.

To gaze into the very source of all things and beings,and to gaze into the manifesting of everything and anything is self liberation. This is the becoming of manifesting which is liberation. This naturalnesss of the unfolding of all things and beings, which the ancient Greeks called phusis is the rising and receding of all that is present in its presencing and absencing.

There is unceasing radiance of what is manifesting as unique is gleaming of pure giving and letting. In every human being there is an abiding awareness of the emergence of all beings and all the whos .This vivid presence of the unfolding of presencing, this gleaming of nature is all whos gleam.

Being brings beings into presence. It is not simply the presence of the being which draws one attention but the presencing of the being coming into presence. Our attentnion is not simply focused on what is present (the being) in its sheer presence but gazing into seeing into the pure coming into presence itself. Being is without a being. One stands before Being as Being. Through beings we enter Being itself. Through experiencing the manifesting of beings we, as  whos, experience Being itself through beings.

There is this movingness of whos and beings and things in and out of presence. There is a movingness in Greek language that allows this to be heard and seen more easily. We can easily see beings as inert and static objects or entities fixed, for the subject also is fixed and fixated. When we focus on the ground, the temporal ground out of which beings manifest, and this is the manifesting of what is presenting. What shows itself is the manifesting, and what is manifesting is the inner empowering of beings namely Being itself.

To experience the field of awareness is to experience the manifesting of phenomena .The more you are in the field of awareness the more able you are able to experience the manifesting of phenomena arising as field. The more you are in the awareness field the more you feel the energy of manifestation. The more you are in the field of awareness the more you experience the energy, the vibration as the shakti. The more you experience the energy the more you are experiencing the manifestation of the ground.

When you experience the pulsations, the vortexualness, the openingnness, the sublime vibrations the more you are feeling the manifestingness of the ground.

Presence to us is more than its meaning. Presence is not reducible to meaning.Being or phusis.  It is the presencing of beings and things and the presencing of the who…who is not a thing, but is beingness itself.

Phusis is the emerging and letting come into presence of what is present. Phusis is self presencing of presence in infinite ways. There is this power of the emergence of all things and beings and whos, the opening and showing of all things and being to us which is the showing of Being itself as beings.

Nature as phusis is the temporal manifestation of beings in their beingness and you and I dwell in this in the midst of this manifesting and we ourselves are being manifested. Everything is not grounded in the subject..Subject is not source but is a manifestation of source. There is amazement and astonishment at the unceasing and inexhaustible giving, showing, shining, forth of all things and beings and whos. The core matter is not our meaning making but what calls forth meaning which is phusis or nature or manifestation.   

In experiencing presencing of a who, or being or even a thing, you are seeing through, seeing into experience presencing itself. This presencing is the manifesting of the ground.  You enter the flowing, you are the shakti, you enter the field of Being…the field is the manifesting of Being, the manifestation of shakti, the energia is the manifesting of Being, which is the field of awareness.


Written by: Rudolph Bauer, Ph.D  A.B.P.P.

The Washington Center for Consciousness Studies

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Washington Center for Consciousness Studies

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