SOREN KIERKEGAARD. Presented by: FR.RONNIE. B. RODRIGUEZ, MS UST Graduate School. Life and Works:. SK was born in Copenhagen, Denmark on May 5, 1813, the seventh and youngest child of Michael Pedersen Kierkegaard and his second wife Ane Sorensdatter Lund Kierkegaard.
FR.RONNIE. B. RODRIGUEZ, MS
UST Graduate School
…his life was one of the most dramatic ever known, because of the depth and power of his “reflection.” Everything took place inside his soul, and what others would regard as trivial, or to be forgotten as soon as possible, was in him enhanced and magnified and “penetrated” by thought until it yielded the richest of poetic and philosophical treasures…Here is…an individual man, highly gifted but terribly “alone,” struggling not with external forces, but with himself and God.
One must know oneself before knowing anything else. It is only after a man has thus understood himself inwardly and has thus seen his way, that life acquires peace and significance…in the spiritual world it is first of all necessary to work for some time before the light bursts through and the sun shines forth in all its glory.
Every human existence which is not conscious of itself as spirit, or conscious of itself before God as spirit…whatever it accomplishes, though it be the most amazing exploit, whatever it explains, though it were the whole of existence, however intensely it enjoys life aesthetically – every such existence is after all despair.
3. His view of history as not simply a chronology of events, but also representing progress.
4. Hegels’ dialectic where history moves from one stage, to a conflicting stage, and then to a third stage which synthesizes the previous two stages, that is, preserves what is true in the previous two stages.
5. Hegel’s conception of freedom which is very different from the popular conception of freedom as the ability to do as one pleases.
3. Hegel’s backward-looking, historical evolutionary view ignores the living human being who must make decisions, who must act alone, now: “It is perfectly true, as philosophers say, that life must be understood backwards. But they forget the other proposition, that it must be lived forwards.”
4. Hegel’s claim that apparently contradictory views can, and should, be synthesized is fundamentally opposed to Kierkegaard’s belief that life consists of making “either/or” choices.
5. Kierkegaard strongly disagrees with Hegel’s notion of “positive” freedom – which he wouldn’t consider to be freedom at all – where individuals assert their freedom by conforming to the rational ideals of their age.
THE MAIN THEMES IN KIERKEGAARD’S PHILOSOPHY
- The most tremendous thing which has been granted to man is: the choice, freedom.
…fear is the recoil from threatening possibilities that lie outside a man’s own conscious power, while dread is generated in him by the prodigious possibilities inherent in his own capacity to act.
One has to test oneself…and do it at the right time. One should not dodge one’s tests, though they may be the most dangerous game one could play and are tests that are taken in the end before no witness or judge but ourselves.
- ONE in which the individual thinks in terms of what’s best for the community, ideally all, not just for himself or herself.
“THE MAN WHO CAN REALLY STAND ALOND IN THE WORLD, ONLY TAKING COUNSEL FROM HIS CONSCIENCE – THAT MAN IS A HERO.”