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Re: Disjunction [1]

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  • Jim Stuart
    Hi Willy, This is a short reply to the three postings you have addressed to me since my original posting entitled Disjunction . What you say and quote does
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 2, 2005
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      Hi Willy,

      This is a short reply to the three postings you have addressed to me since my original posting entitled "Disjunction".

      What you say and quote does show that there is quite a measure of agreement between us on the nature of Kierkegaard's three transitions. I don't really have much to say in reply to these postings, given that you are just marking out the areas around which we agree.

      Perhaps I can summarise the disagreement between us as follows. For you, the transitions represent a more radical break or disconnection between the before and after than I am prepared to countenance (given my own interpretation of SK's account). For yourself, the transitions (or at least the first transition from the aesthetic sphere to the ethical sphere) involve a discontinuity of meanings and a discontinuity of self such that the words of the individual pre-transition mean different things from the meanings of the same words post-transition. Further, the pre-transition self is not identical to the post-transition self. For my part, I want to claim that meanings only change very slightly, if at all, and the person pre-transition is the same person as the person post-transition.

      I think that what I say about the similarities between the duck-rabbit situation and SK's transitions is neutral between my modest account of SK's transitions and your radical account. I want to say that a person who cannot see the rabbit in the duck-rabbit drawing can still understand what the person who can see the rabbit is saying. (Of course, the duck-only person does not have the extra experience that the both-duck-and-rabbit person has.) Further, the person who suddenly sees the rabbit in the drawing is still the same person as she was before.

      As I say in my posting to Ben, I take him to be suggesting that our problems understanding each other over the notions of 'transition' and 'disjunction' are (at least partly) due to our not separating logical (ideal) propositions from empirical (actual) propositions. He may have a good point here. (I'm not sure at present.) SK certainly does argue for some absolute dichotomies: ideality vs. actuality; the eternal vs. the temporal; the abstract vs. the concrete; the relative vs. the absolute; the finite vs. the infinite. Arguably an actual transition that a real individual undergoes takes place in time, while the term 'disjunction' is essentially a logical term and thus atemporal. There is also the distinction between what actually happens in the case of a particular individual, and what, ideally, ought to happen. I'll have to think more about all this.

      I'd like to suspend our discussion of SK's transitions and the nature of SK's idea of disjunction for the time being, while I take some time out to do some more reading of SK. I look forward to continuing our discussion at some stage in the future.

      Yours,

      Jim

      P.S. Of course, feel free to respond to what I write here (I'm not attempting to have the last word on our discussion), but as I say my intention is to take a short break from contributing to the Kierkegaardians while I collect my thoughts and re-assess my ideas.

      P.P.S. I have copied the collection of postings from the Group Files folder, so they may be deleted now.



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