In his description of the understanding, Gadamer talks about a metaphysics of light. We are able to see because of light, but that light always origins from a certain place, and the reflection from it is perceived by a certain eye. In the same manner our language is the light of our understanding that shines upon our world and makes being itself understandable.

Imagine a castle and a lake; the mirror-image in the lake is an exact representation of that castle, because it is exactly that which it reflects. Nevertheless, the lake will never be that castle. The absurdity of distance between people, and the fact that we will always be separated from each other is the same condition that makes understanding possible.

The understanding is a way of being in this world, but to accept this human distance is also to acknowledge the finitude and imperfection that lead humans to hurt each other.

Sometimes we identify love as the only thing that overcomes human limitation, but then absurdity interrupts it. Humans are most definitely a being in time that is constantly shifting between two poles: the limitations of life and the absolute. Understanding and perceiving the light of this world is a way of engaging in the question of what it means to balance between these two poles.