"Philosophy must be liberated as much as possible from the crowd. For whom who wishes to start to get some understanding, a clearing is better than a forest."


EMANUELE SEVERINO Emanuele Severino was born in 1929 in Brescia. He graduated at the University of Pavia in 1950 with an extraordinary thesis on " Heidegger and Philosophy ". He becomes lecturer at large in theoretical Philosophy in 1951. After a period of teaching at the Catholic University of Milan, he obtains a permanent position teaching moral Philosophy in 1962 at the same university. In 1964 he brings into a state of confusion the theoretical debate of the time with the essay " Ritorno a Parmenide "(Return to Parmenides)". From 1970 he holds a permanent position teaching theoretical Philosophy at the University of Venice where he also is director of the Department of Philosophy and Theory of Science until 1989. He is a member of the prestigious academy of the "Lincei". Among his many works we remember: " Note sul problematicismo italiano "(Notes on the Italian problematic nature), Brescia, 1950; " La struttura originaria " (The original structure) (1957), Milan, 1981; " Studi della Filosofia della prassi " (Studies of the philosophy of procedure) , Milan, 1984; " Essenza del nichilismo " (Essence of nihilism), Milan, 1972; " Gli abitatori del tempo "(The inhabitants of time), Roma, 1978; " Legge e caso " (Laws and cases), Milan, 1979; " Le radici della violenza " (The roots of violence) , Milan, 1979; " Destino della necessità' " (Destiny of the necessity), Milan, 1980; " A Cesare e a Dio " (To Caesar and to God), Milan, 1983; " La strada " (The street), Milan, 1983; " La Filosofia antica " (The ancient philosophy), Milan, 1985; " La filosofia moderna " (The modern philosophy), Milan, 1985; "Il parricido mancato " (The failed parricide), Milan, 1985; " La filosofia contemporanea " (The contemporaneous philosophy), Milan, 1988; " Il giogo " (The joke), Milan, 1989; " La filosofia futura " (The future philosophy), Milan, 1989; " Alle origini della ragione " (At the origins of reason), Milan, 1989; " Antologia filosofica " (Philosophical anthology), Milan, 1989; " Il nulla e la poesia. Alla fine della'eta' della tecnica " (Nothingness and poetry. At the end of the era of technology), Milan, 1990; " La guerra " (The war), Milan, 1992; " Oltre il linguaggio " (Beyond language), Milan, 1992; " Tautotes ", Milan, 1995; " La Gloria " (The glory), Milan, 2001. He has also published a popular history of philosophy (Ancient, modern, contemporaneous, and future philosophy) and a scholastic manual (Philosophy, 3 volumes). We are faced with an immense body of work and, in addition, it was written with a style of a laborer. For Massimo Cacciari he is a giant, the only philosopher who in the twentieth century can be compared to Heidegger.


Severino recalls, from an interview, when he formulated his ideas for the first time, those destined to raise so much astonishment. He was twenty-three, was already a lecturer at the University, and one day, while working on his first book on the "Fisica" (Physics) of Aristotle in his small study, he was swept away by a surge of new thoughts. " it was as being inside a vortex, in a maelström, and below the earth appeared and the eternal being materialized as it were the bottom of the sea ". It is from that moment that his philosophical adventure began. The philosophy of Emanuele Severino inserts itself in the ontological debate initiated by Heidegger, but that, unlike Heidegger, propounds a return to the ancient thought of Parmenides of Elea. For Severino, the principal question to be faced goes back to classic philosophy and concerns the contradiction or the agreement between the being and the not-being or becoming. The philosopher tackles the problem keeping in mind current authors such as Nietzsche and Heidegger. The general thesis is that the sin and the error of the West and of Christianity included, consist in their distancing from the precepts of Parmenides according to which only the act of being is and can be thought and defined. In choosing not to respect the teachings of Parmenides and introducing the concept of "becoming" in thought and in history, the West found itself in a situation without exit that has brought about the present dominion of reason and technology. In view of all this we must return to Parmenides. The original sin of the West has occurred after Parmenides, when Greek thought , instead of considering only the "existing" , has also evoked the "becoming" intended as a visible dimension where things originate from nothingness and return to nothingness, after having been withheld temporarily in the "existing". The "becoming" becomes an oscillation between the "existing" and nothingness: but Severino, on the crest of the teachings of Parmenides, negates the same existence of the "becoming". The philosophical structure of Severino can be therefore synthesized as:

a) The abandonment of the "existing" of Parmenides and the choice of the "becoming" cause in Western humanity a feeling of anguish, facing the "nothingness", and of nostalgia and need for the "existing".

b) The West, with the logic of the remedy, raises the "immutables" to defend itself from the "becoming" that it has evoked, that is it constructs the entity (God) and transcendental and permanent values (ethical, natural, etc..).

c) Beyond the "immutables" the episteme is the native essence of philosophy, the will to know permanently the truth of the world. The episteme is the stable dimension of knowledge, within which are raised all the "immutables" of the West. The Christian faith inherits the traits of stability from the episteme and turns to the masses.

To increase one's power over things and gods: this has always been the most profound desire of men, who think that power allows them to overcome pain and death. In the garden of Eden the snake assures that death will not follow the eating of the prohibited fruit; on the contrary one becomes similar to gods and will possess their power. Technologies, religions, philosophy, and the arts are the great expedients contrived by man to become more and more powerful. The technology based on modern science has by now become the most powerful instrument of transformation of the world. But the place that contains all other places is the totality of the idea of the "existing". Philosophy has intended to indicate its face. At first it has affirmed the existence of God, that is of the immutable being that no human power can dominate. Afterwards, the philosophy of our times has shown that no God, immutable and eternal, can exist. Therefore, first its way has been blocked by God and its laws; then philosophy has removed the way of every obstacle. Christianity is following the same destiny of philosophy, with the aggravation of setting aside the spirit of criticism with which philosophy tries to argue the reasons for the necessity of the "immutables" that serve as defense and refuge with respect to the "becoming" and are comparable to the creation of the desire for power that Nitzsche refers to. The "immutables", anticipating and controlling the "becoming" suffocate and menace the will to exist, in a way more unbearable of the same menace of the "becoming". Man then recurs, as an anchor to safety, to science and technology, towards freedom from this menace. Modern philosophy tends to sink into scientific knowledge, because it is the very negation and destruction of the "immutables". With regard to this, Severino asserts: " the philosophy goes necessarily towards its own decline, that is towards science, which, however, is the method in which philosophy lives today. […] All can see that philosophy, worldwide, declines in scientific knowledge " (" What do the philosophers do today? ", Milan, 1982). In any case, the same Heidegger, from whom Severino constantly takes inspiration (although aspiring to return to Parmenides), has declared, in " Now only a god can save us ": " philosophy is at an end. […] What has been the function of philosophy until today has been inherited by the sciences. […] The philosophy dissolves into single sciences: psychology, logic, political science ". The abandonment of the "being" of Parmenides and the choice of the "becoming" is the folly of the West, the path of the night, the original space where the forms of western culture, with its social and political institutions, have moved. Faced with the anguish of "becoming", the West, responding to the logic of the remedy, has evoked the "immutables" (God, the laws of nature, dialectics, the free market, the ethical or political laws, ecc.). The civilization of the technology rules the world. At the beginning of our civilization God, the First Technician, creates the world from nothingness and can push it towards nothingness. To day, technology, ultimate god, recreates the world and can annihilate it. In his works, Severino intends to question the faith of the "becoming" within which the West moves, with the conviction that man should search for a remedy against the anguish that such faith generates. The "becoming" is a crowd. Echoing Nietzsche, one concludes that not only no immutable and eternal god can exist, but that the "becoming" is not a rectilinear and irreversible course, but a circle which closes onto itself for ever. Who is capable to discern the necessity of this circle is the "superman", who possesses the will more powerful of any other. Knowing that the way is circular one is necessarily more powerful, both in proceeding and in acting, than whom, disregarding it and believing that the course is rectilinear, continuously goes off the road. Therefore, let's believe in it, technology guided by modern science, technology that today asserts itself as the supreme power of man, can it ignore that the course of events in the world is circular? Can it ignore the fundamental trait of the world? A technology that should ignore it may it not be impotent with respect to the technology that knows it and places this knowledge as its own foundation? And in this manner, don't we have perhaps to prepare to admit what we thought to be the most paradoxical affirmation, that the doctrine of the eternal return raises technology to the limits of its possibilities? Severino might appear paradoxical, even absurd, inconceivable, because he sustains that all is eternal, not only every man and thing, but also every life moment, every feeling, every aspect of reality, and therefore nothing disappears, nothing dies: eternity is his passion, his vocation. Everybody has believed for millennia that things and men are born from nothingness and return to nothingness: Severino says that " to be born means […] to exit from nothingness; to die means to return to nothingness: the living is that which exits nothingness and returns to nothingness " ( "What do the philosophers do today? ", Milan, 1982). In any case all is eternal for Severino. But this is not enough: only at the surface we believe that things come from nothing and that into nothing they will finally precipitate, because in the end we are convinced that the brief segment of light that is life is itself nothing. It is nihilism. It is the primary homicide, the murder of the "being". But it is a contradiction: what is cannot not be, nor can have been or can ever be nothing. A contradiction that is the folly of the West, is now the folly of the entire earth. It is a wound that need many comforts, from reason to art, from frescos on darkness, attempts to hide, medicate nothingness repel us. Luckily the "Non Folly" is waiting for us, the appearance of the eternity of all things. We are eternal and mortal because the eternal enters and exits the state of appearing. Death is the state of being absent from the eternal. Nihilism is in our blood. We think we are beggars when instead we are kings. As Oratio says, " pulvis et umbra sumus " ("we are dust and shadow"): man becomes dust, but dust is also eternal. One can perhaps exorcise death by helping himself with religions and philosophies, we can also believe that all end in a great silence, similar to that precedes birth. Science succeeds in prolonging old age, the pleasures that we search avidly stun the preoccupations accumulated during the days, beauty helps us despise the unbearable reasoning of the mediocre. A fragment from Heraclitus recites: " men await, when are dead, for things that they neither hope for nor suppose ". What spectacles are shown, if they are shown, after death? Death has a significance that is beyond what that one intends commonly with this term. It is beyond the same contraposition of death versus immortality. The West, the prehistory of which is the East, interprets it as annihilation, save for some case in which the soul or conscience would continue to have a life of its own. Severino tries to demonstrate that the persuasion that anything or any event (man, plant, star, situation, instant) can be annihilated, and that annihilation is nothingness, is essentially Folly. It is the most profound Folly that can be manifested not only in the human world, but in the All. Folly dominates the history of the earth in diverse forms; the eternity of everything and of every event appears outside Folly. Death belongs to the demonstration of what is eternal, it is an event internal to this demonstration. It does not sweep us away, but it is a part of our being. It is a necessary condition for happiness. We are destined to happiness which is the overcoming of all contradictions and not a gift given. It is necessity. It is inevitable that after the decline of life and death, of the will and of the apathy, man be happy. With this perspective, God is not the demiurge but the infinite appearance of the eternals, it is essentially different from that of the religious and philosophical tradition. God is not in another world: in the end we are the overcoming of the totality of all contradictions. It is not easy to catch its message, his unusual language, The world is too concrete to have the luxury of tearing from our skin the accidents of the everyday, which stick to men as lice, that torment us like these parasites and that devour our lives sucking time and blood. Because of these ideas of his (and, more generally, of his entire philosophical structure), Severino was dismissed from the "universita' Cattolica" in 1969: " I realized that my discourse contained the most radical 'no' to the philosophical tradition of the West and of the East. It was not directed specifically against the Christian religion ". The catholic education received by Severino never really vanished, even after the elaboration of his philosophy; agreed that he set aside the notion of God, but not that of Truth, cardinal to the Christian tradition. " Truth replaces God, which is remedy for the anguish of the 'nothing'. God is inside Folly, nihilism, and the belief that things die ". According to Severino technology is not handmaid of the forces that govern the world, but is itself that governs the destinies of humanity. Technology continues his journey knowing that it will not encounter any obstacle and any insurmountable limit. The current philosophy has rendered technology completely free, it has elevated it to the summit of its possibilities. Listening to the voice of the philosophy of our time, technology can now adopt a pace very different and essentially more forceful. The instrument (technology in general, the new technologies in particular, the telecommunication and informational networks) is becoming the object, the goal of communication. The famous phrase of Mac Luhan, "the medium is the message", becomes immediately comprehensible in view of this reflection: the means of communications form and transform the messages that are transported, and often, in the postmodern era, becomes the goal of communication itself, leaving behind in the distance concepts and ideas. The concept of ethics itself is changing drastically, ethics is becoming technology, that is the power and the capacity of transmitting and diffusing information. Ethics, as intended by Aristotle and other illustrious philosophers, is being replaced by the dominance of technology. The postmodern thought is a result of a long process, lasted two centuries, during which the concept of truth has been deconstructed especially in its link to the divine. God is dead and with it truth, leaving their places, we might add, to relativisms, possibilisms, and revisionisms of every kind. In this historic and cosmic prospective, Severino places the Italian situation, less free with respect to the others. In Italy the decline of philosophy towards science proceeds more slowly mainly because in our country we have the center of the Catholicism of the world and the strongest communist party in the West, two institutions that, in specific ways, contribute to keep alive the traditional meanings of philosophy, that philosophy as episteme, place where the "immutables" are evoked. It is very relevant the title of one of Severino's works, composed in 1985: " Il parricido mancato " (The failed parricide ); the parricide in question would be that committed by Plato (as the Athenian philosopher himself affirms) to Parmenides, father of the philosophy of "being". Severino, who connects again with the ancient ontologist, wishes to clarify that, in reality, it was a " missed parricide": the philosophy of Parmenides is still alive and well and Severino wished to reconnect to it. As a matter of fact Parmenides, according to Severino, brings to light for the first time the radical sense of the contraposition of the "being" to the "not being" (nothingness) and clarifies the absolute sense of this two ideas, understanding in a philosophical manner what had not been clarified by myth. The first thinkers began to comprehend that the "being" could be viewed as the All beyond which there was nothingness: nothingness is not something that can be known or of which one can talk. Parmenides is important because he delves and interprets the concept of the "being". As a matter of fact if the "not being" is not, it cannot break up into the "being" and divide it into parts; nor it can be something from which the "being" comes out of or sinks into. In this argumentation of Parmenides, the logical fundamental principle of "non-contradiction" is utilized, according to which a character and its contrary are not concurrently accepted as belonging to the same reality. Parmenides notes that is logically contradictory to assert that the "not being" exists, that the "being" exists, because the "not being" is the contrary of the "being" and to affirm the same reality for a character and its contrary is a logical error: a nonsense. The becoming of the "being" is therefore an untrue opinion, an illusory appearance of which mortals who follow the course of "non truth", that is of appearance, become convinced. With the same line of reasoning, Parmenides admits that the "being" was never born, nor will ever die, it is eternal. To affirm that it is born, one should admit that there must have been something that generated it, but since the "being" is unique, this is logically contradictory. For the same reason we cannot accept the fact that the "being" moves, because to move it should pass from a place to another and proceed in an element, empty space, the "not being", which should allow for movement and this is also contradictory. Severino, reflecting on Parmenides and on the history of western civilization, which has a place at the center of the "becoming", the folly that dominates the world, arrives to the affirmation that all is eternal. All is eternal means that every moment of reality "is", that is does not exit and does not return to nothingness. It also means that the triumph that we usually reserve for God should also be given to the most humble and impalpable things and events. Every feeling and thought of ours, every form and nuance of the world, every gesture of man are eternal. And also all that appears everyday and in every instant: the first fire lit by man, the weeping of Jesus at his birth, the oscillations of the lamp in front of Galileo, Hiroshima alive and its corpse. Eternal are every hope and every instant of the world, with all the contents of the instant, eternal is the conscience that sees things with their eternity and sees the folly of the persuasion that things come from nothing and return to it. But to abandon philosophy is not productive, according to Severino: " to speak of philosophy kills philosophy, because the deep vein of gold cannot be seen and what comes out is a specter, a myth at best, a strange discourses if an unbalanced intellectual ".


In " Tautotes " ("Tautology") Severino questions Aristotele's definition of identity (Tautótés) intended as dimension in which lies every attempt by the West to think about the "identity", bypassing, in an original way, the differences between one thing and another without saying that this is not that and fall into the contradiction of talking about an entity that is not. In " Essenza del nichilismo " ("Essence of nihilism"), Severino conducts an audacious analysis which takes us to the borders of the West, that is to "The Republic founded by Plato", to consider what, outside that Republic, perennially is; the main thesis is that " more one speaks of nihilism, more thinking of the essence of nihilism becomes indispensable. It continues to be beyond all that our culture believes as to nihilism and its essence ". " Heidegger e la metafisica " ("Heidegger and metaphysics") represents the attempt to demonstrate how "Heidegger's philosophy, in its essence, makes possible metaphysical knowledge" and how " the fundamental problem of Heidegger be that of a radical construction of metaphysical knowledge ". Notes on the Italian problematicism, already presented in 1948 within the debate over uniformitarianism and problematicism, form the terrain on which Heidegger's work had matured. Implicit in both these writings and from a certain view, is the recognition of Gentile and Heidegger as essential points of reference of the thought of our century, and from another view, is the discovery of the traits that they have in common, which are no less important of their radical divergences. Finally, in a long "Avvertenza" (Admonition), Severino wished to clarify the sense of the various passages of his philosophical itinerary, seen with the today's eyes. The volume completes a group of historical writings, among which "Lineamenti di una fenomenologia dell'atto" (Lineaments of a phenomenology of the act) and "La struttura dell'essere" (The structure of the 'being'). Metaphysics, phenomenology, sociology, and a study on the rosminian reflections on the 'being' and on the affinities of this reflection with the thought of Heidegger. " La tendenza fondamentale del nostro tempo " (The fundamental tendency of our times): in this book - extraordinarily lucid analysis of the secret and evident movement that governs our times - Emanuele Severino challenges his own thought with the realities that surround us. These are enormous realities, according to everybody, they are epochal changes. But in what direction does it change? What does it mean, for instance, the decline of Europe? Doesn't this phenomenon become planetary because of the dominion of technology that, after all, is a specific product of European thought? And what is the rapport between technology and science? What does the preoccupation, today ever more present, to establish limits to research mean? Can one talk of ethics of science? These are only few of the themes that are considered. These are very grave themes, which, too often, are abandoned to the opinionating of the daily newspapers. Here, on the contrary, these themes find their strategic place inside a rigorous and speculative structure. Not everybody will be inclined to follow Severino to its extreme consequences, which are very audacious. But it will be precious to follow his analyses in every step because they touch, every time, the most sensitive nerve of the questions. And the questions treated in this book are those that we encounter inevitably in our everyday life. " Destino della necessità " (Destiny of the necessity): this work seems to be the most complete by Severino, like a sum total of his thought, which here continues, with a very different language diverse from his punctual correspondences, the vast design of the "Original Structure" (1958) and of the "Essence of nihilism" (1972). The inquiry of Severino has as primary object nihilism. With this term, coined by Nietzsche and Heidegger, it was often meant to designate that peculiar machinery of concepts and oppositions - machinery that both destroys and self-destroys - and at the same time is a generator of power -, within which the entire Western thought has developed. Severino, not only subtracts from this term any vagueness and allusiveness, but it confers to it a sense radically different showing how the persuasion that the "entity" is nothing, is radically linked to the belief in the "becoming" and to the historicity of the world. A characteristic of nihilism is to present itself anew behind different forms, hiding its foundation: and in fact, if it is true, as Severino affirms, that nihilism is the "essential content of the history of the West", and together "the subconscious of the prehistory of the West", it will be necessary, in order to follow its metamorphosis, to analyze all the events in the West, within which we are immersed, until the concealed plot becomes evident in its in its various passages. Such analysis cannot stop at articulating only the classical texts of philosophy. Prior to this, it is in the articulating of the same lexicon of the Greek thought that one can observe the genesis of the nihilistic process: Severino dedicates a long and audacious section of this work to this idea, detecting a first split of the lexis, in the indo-European languages, between the "timber of the reflection" and the "timber of the inflexible". And, on the other hand, it is the nihilistic process prolong itself in all the "struttura dell'azione" (structure of the action) because it is 'struttura del dominio" (structure of the dominion), such as been 'formulated, once and for all, by Aristotele', to be then embraced again with innumerable variations during the course of the centuries. Therefore, the picture that Severino shows us is a grandiose global image of what has been, and what is, that obscure phenomenon designated as western thought, thought based on the decision to separate from the All to better dominate the world. Severino however does not only intend to reconstruct what the West has thought, but also what he has had to extract from his own thought and works and that it still faces us in its enigmatic way. " The West … is one of the two couriers that guide and direct in two opposite directions what happens on the earth: it is the "visible" courier, that is witnessed, and "visible" is also the path that it follows ", guided by a "will for power" that is in the end "essentially impotent", the other invisible courier is guided by a "will of destiny" which is witnessed in these pages. " Legge e caso " (Law and cases) Science and dominion cross each other inextricably. But " why the dominion should not be exercised? And exercised without limits? Perhaps because in the final analysis it violates human rights? Bu what knowledge is now capable to show the true rights and to establish the true limit that separates the law from the deviations of man? " With these happily provocative questions, Severino begins a stringent and acute investigation with the intent of isolating the specific sense in which, today, science discusses of laws and cases - and together return to its distant origin, that is to the birth of Greek thought. It is there that the tension that immobilizes all western thought is formed: from one view the unheard of affirmation of the "becoming" as "irruption of the unforeseen", in the case that from nothingness one passes to the "being" - and it is not unforeseen but also unforeseeable, because "a forecast of the 'nothing' is impossible"; from another view the radical "will of saving oneself from the menace of the 'becoming'", that expresses itself in the episteme, because is cognitive exorcism that is based on the "incantation of the 'immutables'". But this last form of knowledge has proven to be inadequate to contrast the avid will of science domination: even the last remains of the "immutables", signals of an incontrovertible truth, have been dissolved by a speculative and technical practice with which science has reached "the most radical form of dominance because it destroys the "immutables" that render this domination unthinkable". But in such way even the "most abyssal alienation" is affirmed; "the persuasion and together the will that terrestrial things, since they are terrestrial, know nothing". " Studi della filosofia della prassi " (Studies of the philosophy of procedure) : the expression "filosofia della prassi" (philosophy of procedure) mentions something which is more fundamental than usually thought: it mentions the fundamental link that unites truth and procedure. "Prassi" (Procedure) is the word with which Greek thought indicates in general, and once and for all in the history of the West, "Fazione" (Faction) because force which knowingly conducts things into the "nothing" and into the "not nothing" ("le cose", the things) in their amplest sense: 'external' and 'internal' states, forms, situations, rapports, processes - every "not nothing). The "prassi" (procedure) belongs to the essence of nihilism: it is one of the fundamental categories according to which nihilism thinks about things. It is therefore one of the fundamental categories of the error". This is what Severino writes in the "Prefazione" (Foreword) to this amplified edition of the Studies of the philosophy of procedures, which poses again the text of 1962, but with the addition of a vast apparatus of inedited "Postille" (Annotations) and of an Appendix that contains, in a sequence of questions and answers, the elucidation of a thesis encompassing every philosophy of procedures: "The West is the Republic of Plato". In the annotations Severino's thought abandon itself to a fascinating counterpoint with himself, that tends to establish the necessity of the thesis of these Studies and also to point out in which measure they are still ensnared in the "implication between nihilism and procedure". In this work, the two faces, and also the two languages, of Severino's thought are both present: on one hand the strictly analytical language, that had appeared with the original structure, on the other hand the language that reveals itself beginning from the writings on the Essence of nihilism. " Oltre il linguaggio " (Beyond the language): can technology offer the remedy for the damages that it produces? Or is this the extreme illusion that blinds us? Can one set the violence? But who has the power to impose a limit that cannot be crossed? What is the link between "being" and "language"? Is it true, as much of modern philosophy wishes, that "the being that can be understood is the language"? These are hazardous and difficult themes: in this book they become an opportunity for an investigation that, beginning from the most recent of Severino's major works, "Destiny of the necessity", and recalling the fundamentals of his thought, which are exposed in the "Struttura originaria" (Original Structure), explores new territories. In Severino, as always, the extreme clarity and the vigor of the argumentations render these essays precious in resolving questions of great speculative precision, but they also can reveal, to a larger public, the urgency of the problems that are considered. "If the violence is the will that at aims at the impossible, and if the will is essentially a desire for something becoming something other than itself, then - since becoming something different than itself is impossible (because the impossible is, more than anything else, being other than itself) - the will is, as such, the desire for the impossible, and the is the will is, as such, the violence. The devastations of man and earth are the visible form of the violence; charity, love, tolerance are forms hidden in the violence. Even any redeeming will is a hidden form of violence - as every "creative" will. No creator and no savior can save us. Why can't salvation be found somewhere else, why the very concept of salvation - as it has presented itself during the course of the history of the West - is in essence violence, that will to transform the world, and therefore will that wants the impossible". " L'anello del Ritorno " (The ring of the return): "Extraneous body" or "unsolved problem of the philosophy of Nietzsche", the doctrine "of the eternal return of the equal" is as much cited as it is unknown. Even in the treatise of Heidegger, it is not difficult to recognize elements operating within the thought of the interpreter. This complex reading of Severino - who, among other things, discusses the exegesis of Heidegger - descends into the more accessible dimension of Nietzsche's thought, and has therefore, the primary merit of giving back the eternal return to the reader who wishes to approach the naked, hypnotic ontological vortex. Applying his analytical view to the entire philosophical constellation presented by Nietzsche with regard to the circular movement of the ring, Severino discerns in the eternal return the inevitable consequence of the faith in the becoming and that is of the faith of the dead of God; on the other hand this inevitability is also the extreme form assumed by the nihilism as Severino conceives it. With the doctrine of the eternal return, Nietzsche brings to its "peak" the constitutive character, not only of contemporary philosophy, but also of the civilization of technology that is "the inevitable destruction of the tradition of philosophy and of the entire West". The eternal return, as "extreme approximation of the world of the becoming to the world of the being", has made come to the surface "the iceberg" that drifts in the deep waters of contemporaneous thought. The iceberg is the folly of the becoming as conviction that things come from and return to nothingness - the abnormal "folly of the West" from which the entire thought of Severino, the thought of the "Gioia" (Joy), that is of the destiny of the immutable truth of the being - has tried and tries to "awaken us" and to "disenchant us". Already from these observations, one can argue that the ring of return is destined to take a central position among the theoretical works of its author. "We have never really considered that the doctrine of the eternal return of all things has also the same intent as the doctrine of the dead of God: to exclude, in name of the evidence of the creativity of man and of the becoming, every immutable "Essere" (Being) that, with its existence, would controvert and reduce to simple appearance such evidence. A doctrine of the eternal return that, far from being a body extraneous from the Nietzsche's thought, belongs to the essential voice of the West and moreover it adds to it a timber of extraordinary power. It relates to time; and appropriately to the past". "La Gloria" (The glory): is the thought of Severino driven to its ultimate consequences. Destiny of the necessity, this work of Severino, to which all his other works converge, concludes with the promise of a second Part that would have answered the more grave and surprising questions that the text had evoked. To a "pars destruens" (destructive part) rigorously conducted on the fundamental theses of western thought, a "pars construens" (constructive part) should follow that would show how a thought, not founded on the presupposition that every being emerges from and return to nothingness, is possible and what it implies. This promise is kept, after twenty-one years, with this book. Where the "Gioia" (Joy), term already present in the Destiny of the necessity and unusual in philosophical discourse, is joined by the "Gloria" (Glory), term that has a long past, but it is more theological that philosophical. Consequently, man himself - that is the subject who reads - will discover to have been, eternally, something radically different from what he supposes to be and that is, in general, the highest ambition that thought can have. "The uncovering of the "Gioia" (Joy), in its being free by contrast with the solitude of the earth, is the "Gloria" (Glory). […] And its is even more the Glory, is one takes into account that the answer just given really says that the perennial and finite manifestation of the eternal and of the destiny is an infinite deployment that does not stop at any definitive configuration of the earth, not at a road blocked by any conclusive spectacle; and unearthing regions always diverse from the totality of the eternal, it does not permit forgetfulness of even the more miniscule and irrelevant of the regions that have been brought to light".


"La Gloria" (The Glory), whose complete title includes the fragment from Heraclitus "Assa ouk èlpontai" (things that they do not hope for), is a book that, as the author himself declares, represents a debt to those who have praised his thought for many years, but have been waiting for answers to questions that have not been discussed completely in the most indicative and important of his works, " Il Destino della necessità " (The Destiny of the necessity) 1980, where they found the inevitable conclusions of a discourse that had kept the philosopher busy from 1964. But, as often happens in every authentic philosophical discourse, the conclusions are never definitive, but are pauses, at time extenuating, that one encounters during the journey. What the author offers us in this book is a clarification that does not give anything to the reader but concedes everything to the thesis in question. In his usual method of argumentation, Severino leads us towards the asperity of his thought taking into consideration, under a different light, themes that are today at the center of the philosophical debate such as pain, internal subjectivity , and the related problem of arrogance. All of this through a prose that is not always easy to read and which will not fail, in particular important questions, to give moments of joy , but also of pain, to those who cultivate a thought which is discussed with rigor. 1964 is an important turn in the philosophy of Severino. It is the year of the publication of his famous article "Ritornare a Parmenide" (Return to Parmenides) (1964), that will provoke many discussions and in which the necessity to meditate again on the sense of the words "the 'being' is and the 'not being' is not" is established. These are the years during which Heidegger intervenes in a series of seminars dedicated to Parmenides where, to distance himself definitely from the play of modern subjectivity, was desirable to a return to the beginning, making clear however, that such return should not have consisted in a return to Parmenides. Severino himself refers, in the "La legna e la cenere" (The wood and the ashes) (2000), to the opinion of Gennaro Sasso according to whom the words of Heidegger would be perhaps an allusion to the thesis contained in his article. But what does this return to Parmenides implies? As Severino will clarify in more than one occasion, it was the case of directing the attention towards these simple but troubling words in order to repeat the platonic parricide, that being responsible for the nihilism of the West, which has now penetrated the most intimate fibers of our culture, has positioned itself as the guide of the entire world. The era of technology, in which we live, expresses, more than in any other era, the will for power, the will to produce anything, including man. Nihilism is thinking of what can come from nothingness and return to nothingness. The thing, without any necessary link to the "being", can be modified at will. But one must comprehend that this is an illusion: because it is impossible that the "being" can be the "not being". All of the past and the future do not come from nothingness, they are neither the simple remembrance nor the palpitating anticipation. The past as the future are eternally linked to nothingness even though we are not conscious of this. All things, as we ourselves, are and will never be able to really die, because, as the gods, we are eternal. This thought, herewith simplified, constitutes the cardinal theme that, as in a symphonic poem, retraces its variations up to his most authentic celebration expressed in this book. From here the fragment by Heraclitus, 'eternity is what we do not hope for'. "The Glory" is the incontrovertible splendor of eternity.