First of all I would like to thank all of you for reading my post and taking some of your time and trying to help me.
I'm learning dutch by my own, mainly by reading a grammar book and consulting different sources on the net.
I'm still in a beginner level.
My question is somehow strange and maybe senseless, but I don't care to expose myself as long as I get to clarify and improve my understanding.
According to my book, to form the perfect tense of a modal auxiliary in conjunction with another verb the past participle becomes infinitive, and now it is the perfect tense auxiliary verb hebben/zijn which agrees with the subject.
Dat heeft zij altijd willen doen
I understand and remember the rules for constructing this kind of sentences. But I'm concerned about the sense of the whole or the information that every element of it gives to a reader/listener. I mean, in a sentence like the above I don't see any particle that is placing this action in the past. Yes, I see the hebben/zijn past perfect auxiliary, but since the past participle is replaced by the infinitive, it seems that there lacks important information (for me, as a humble learner, lost in doubts constantly).
Same thing happens in some infinitive constructions when used in past perfect:
Zij is komen helpen
Wij hebben naar de radio zitten luisteren.
Then again, hebben/zijn + infinitive + infinitive.
I dont know if you get my point. As a learner I'm trying too "feel" the language, to try to understand its inner constructions or meanings, not "just" translating it. Of course I just can learn the rule, and because my book tells me that this is a way to express a past perfect with modals in this language I remember so.
But how does a dutch native speaker make sense of this constructions? How does he know that this happened in the past? Just because there is the hebben/zijn auxiliary? But the presense of the hebben or zijn verbs it doesn't seem enough for me.
I repeat, excuse me if I don't express correctly what I'm trying to ask or if it seems absurd to you.
I would like to understand a bit more the nature of this language and learn something.
Thanks a lot.