Being and Appearing coincide.

Being and Appearing coincide.

The world [we] are born into contain many things, natural and artificial, living and dead, transient and semipiternal, all of which have in common that they appear and hence are meant to be seen, heard, touched, tasted, and smelled, to be perceived by sentient creatures endowed with the appropriate sense organs.

Being and Appearing coincide.

Nothing and nobody exists in this world whose very being does not presuppose a spectator.

The worldliness of living things means that there is no subject that is not also an object and appears as such to somebody else, who guarantees its “objective” reality. What we usually call “consciousness” the fact that I am aware of myself and therefore in a sense can appear to myself, would never suffice to guarantee reality. (19-20)

Still, all sense-endowed creatures have appearance as such in common, first, an appearing world and second, and perhaps more important, the fact that they themselves are appearing and disappearing creatures, that there always was a world before their arrival and there always will be a world after their departure.

To be alive means to live in a world that preceded one’s own arrival and will survive one’s own departure. (20)

From Hannah Arendt’s The Life of the Mind, Book 1: Thinking, 1971, 1978 A Harvest: HBJ Book, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich Publishers.