March 13, 2009 at 4:58 pm
It took a gentle nudge from Kierkegaard’s seemingly mild treatises on Dread, Despair and Fear, sheathed within his characteristic (yet razor sharp) Irony, to slice away my tightly-clenched gordian knot;
and accept his reasoned invitation of, ‘a leap TO faith’…
[as the only recourse/reconciliation in this world of freedom (free will) and responsibility (values)]
While I dare not aspire to a faith like Job’s, and like yourself, I am in more ways a cynical Candide;
I do hope that as we march on towards our alloted three score and ten years (though I’m less than halfway yet), I can do a reverse-Candide and have my crusty cynicism diminished gradually, until I’m a woolly-headed but optimistic seventy year-old.
After all, the world could do with more Don Quixotes.
Don Chu on July 18, 2009 5:10 pm
Hi Mr Dimick,
The Danish philosopher, Søren Kierkegaard, wrote his thesis/first work on “The Concept of Irony”; an understanding of which is crucial towards reading Kierkegaard and his masterful crafting of irony within the content, form and structure underlining his entire corpus of works. Essentially, Kierkegaard wrote under pseudonymous authorship (more than ten), in order to portray different ways of thinking and to allow ‘indirect communication’ to surface.
Irony — razor-sharp when used judiciously — slices away illusions to reveal truth.
A finer appreciation for Irony may allow one to have a better grasp on the cut-and-thrust of another’s communication/expression; like where the above commenters are coming from…
[Of course, Ironists should restrain themselves from cutting others too deeply with their iron(ic) knives]
Far from a simplistic Either/Or, but struggling, in Fear and Trembling:
…Kierkegaard’s description of the “double movement of faith” performed by Abraham (in the ultimate test of faith — the sacrifice of Issac); where Kierkegaard had painted several ‘fractal’ possibilities/scenarios of how Abraham moved through joy-fear-resignation-acceptance-obedience-sacrifice-murder-hope, to a ‘real faith in the absurd’…