Re: [Kierkegaardians] Re: Repetition
- I believe the book by Hannay is a joy to read because it confirms many of my own
experiences, and I hope those of others who also seek confirmation. It just takes a lot of time and work to follow the authour until you
realise he is also writing about yourself.
On page 168, he writes that "Kierkegaard is really only saying once again that the
category of the spiritual, and therefore ethics and therefore sin, is autonomous and
the transition into it is inexplicable.". I was taken to task by venturing that the
Good can be found in the world with everything else. In retrospect I wrote hastily.
There was a 'call' , as Heidegger too describes, by which I believed my future
was in the world. The call was a call to silence. This 'call' was entirely unexplainable,
but with faith in the 'call' I believed I would discover the Good.
My point would also, I believe, be Kierkegaard's, or that spiritual development does not
occur by ascending to Religiousness B, but is a series of successive states where
the transitions involve repetitions of the fall in to sin. However, the importance of
the experience of Repetition is that the individual has withdrawn from believing
objective reality has much consequence for the freedom to be the self one knows
one should be. To have this freedom is to know how to be swayed by this rather
than that, and not determined in advance by a determinstic state so as to stamp-out
one's own nature entirely.
James Rovira <jamesrovira@...> wrote:
I've read a couple of Hannay's books and they're generally good. His
biography is not a good biography--not that he's wrong, but that he devolves
into writing another interpretation of Kierkegaard rather than a biography,
with little connection to K's life. The Garff bio is -much- better -- it's
actually a biography. Hannay is a good writer with clear ideas, though. If
anyone can come close to being a fun read...
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Talk is cheap. Use Yahoo! Messenger to make PC-to-Phone calls. Great rates starting at 1¢/min.
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- Bill, I almost included the following "Note" from SK, and deferred
because of its length. It is from this "note" that I derive my view of
what SK is saying. I will back up, explain what I meant and why I said
it, and pass it back to you. Yep, these things do take time, but their
unfolding is part of the pleasure of communication.
I see two reasons for there being no historical point of departure for
RA; first is the given that the incarnation is not part of it, and the
second being that the God-relation is that of immanence; there being
no finite self involved, that the self has been set aside. I read this
setting aside as the ending of the temporal sense of self, which
leaves only the timeless. In the experience of it, there is only a
singular space, call it reality if you will, or call it the "at once,"
or, as I called, and call it, Home. The self that has been set aside
is the temporal sense of self. There is, in reflection upon that
sojourn, no other time other than the time present. Reminds me of
Burnt Norton, it does.
SK insists that RA must be in place before RB can be entertained, that
without this qualification, RB is not RB, the second immediacy, but
the first immediacy, which is the esthetic grasp of Christianity.
I am reminded of another quote, which I have appended as the first
quote below. In it the meaning of immediacy, immanence, and repetition
are combined in a way that I see adding clarity to the terms. ----willy
"Repetition is basically the expression for immanence; thus one
finishes despairing and has oneself; one finishes doubting and has the
truth. Constantin Constantius, the esthetic schemer, who ordinarily
despairs of nothing, despairs of repetition, and the Young Man
illustrates that if it is to come into existence it must be a new
immediacy, so that it is itself a movement by /virtue of the absurd/,
and the teleological suspension /an ordeal/." (CUP, Hong, p. 263;
Lowrie, p. 235) [I show /italics/ this way]
"Note. Insofar as the upbuilding is the essential predicate of all
religiousness, Religiousness A also has its upbuilding. Whenever the
relationship with God is found by the existing person in the
inwardness of subjectivity, there is the upbuilding, which belongs to
subjectivity, whereas by becoming objective one relinquishes that
which, although belonging to subjectivity, is nevertheless no more
arbitrariness than erotic love and being in love, which indeed one
relinquishes by becoming objective. The totality of
guilt-consciousness is the most upbuilding element in Religiousness A*
The upbuilding element in the sphere of Religiousness A is that of
immanence, is the annihilation in which the individual has set himself
aside in order to find God, since it is the individual himself who is
the hindrance. ** Here the upbuilding is quite properly
distinguishable by the negative, by the self-annihilation that finds
the relationship with God within oneself, that suffering-through sinks
into the relationship with God, finds its ground in it, because God is
in the ground only when everything in the way is cleared out, every
finitude, and first and foremost the individual in his finitude, in
his caviling against God. Esthetically, the sacred resting place of
the upbuilding is outside the individual; he seeks that place. In the
ethical-religious sphere, the individual himself is the place, if the
individual has annihilated himself.
This is the upbuilding of Religiousness A. If one does not pay
attention to this and to have this of the upbuilding in between,
everything is confused again as one defines the paradoxical
upbuilding, which then is mistakenly identified with an external
esthetic relation. In religiousness B, the upbuilding is something
outside the individual; the individual does not find the upbuilding by
finding the relationship with God within himself but relates himself
to something outside himself in order to find the upbuilding. The
paradox is that this apparently esthetic relationship, that the
individual relates himself to something outside himself, nevertheless
is to be the absolute relationship with God, because in immanence God
is neither a something, but everything, and is infinitely everything,
nor outside the individual, because the upbuilding consists in his
being within the individual. The paradoxical upbuilding therefore
corresponds to the category of God in time as an individual human
being, because, if that is the case, the individual relates himself to
something outside himself.
That this cannot be thought is precisely the paradox. Whether the
individual is not thrust back from this is another matter that
remains his affair. But if the paradox is not held fast in this way,
then Religiousness A is higher, and all Christianity is pushed back
into the esthetic categories, despite Christianity's insistence that
the paradox it speaks about cannot be thought, is thus different from
a relative paradox, which at best can be thought with difficulty. It
must be conceded to speculative thought that it holds to immanence,
even though it must be understood as different than Hegel's pure
thinking, but speculative thought must not call itself Christian. That
is why I have never called Religiousness A Christian or Christianity.
*The reader will please recall that the direct relationship with God
is esthetics and is actually no relationship with God, any more than a
direct relationship to the absolute is an absolute relation, since the
separation of the absolute has not commenced. In the religious sphere,
the positive is distinguished by the negative. The highest well-being
of a happy immediacy, which jubilates joy over God and all existence,
is very endearing but not upbuilding and essentially not any
relationship with God.
**The esthetic always consists in the individual's fancying that he
has been busy searching for God and taking hold of him, consequently
in the illusion that the undialectical individual is really clever if
he can take hold of God as something external." (CUP, Hong, Note pp.
560-61: Lowrie, pp. 497-98)