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Re: Is Kierkegaard's Ethical Individual in Despair?

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  • jimstuart46
    Mederic, I have done a cursory search of the archives, without coming up with an exact statement on Willy s part. I think message 5137 is quite revealing. I
    Message 1 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
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      Mederic,

      I have done a cursory search of the archives, without coming up with
      an exact statement on Willy's part.

      I think message 5137 is quite revealing. I put it to Willy that Anti-
      Climacus would say that Judge William (clearly an ethical
      individual) was in despair, but if you read carefully, you will see
      that Willy does not answer me directly, and subtly changes the
      subject.

      I'll continue to look through the archives, but let me try to ignore
      the past and the future, and exist solely in the present. So …


      Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical individual in
      despair?


      Mederic, lets wait and see if Willy gives us a straight answer.


      Jim
    • jimstuart46
      Ah, ha! – Found it! See: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/kierkegaardianThought/message/361 Jim
      Message 2 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
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      • James Rovira
        I think to categorically say, the ethical individual is in despair would be a mistake. Probably more accurate to say, the ethical individual is -either-
        Message 3 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
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          I think to categorically say, "the ethical individual is in despair" would be a mistake.  Probably more accurate to say, "the ethical individual is -either- moving toward despair -or- is in despair."

          Jim R

        • Médéric Laitier
          A straight answer from that bent junkie? Methinks we ll have to wait for a long, long, long time... But wait and see... There can be miracles. Mederic ... A
          Message 4 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
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            A straight answer from that bent junkie? Methinks we'll have to wait for a long, long, long time...

            But wait and see... There can be miracles.

            Mederic



            --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "jimstuart46" <jjimstuart@...> wrote:
            >
            > Mederic,
            >
            > I have done a cursory search of the archives, without coming up with
            > an exact statement on Willy's part.
            >
            > I think message 5137 is quite revealing. I put it to Willy that Anti-
            > Climacus would say that Judge William (clearly an ethical
            > individual) was in despair, but if you read carefully, you will see
            > that Willy does not answer me directly, and subtly changes the
            > subject.
            >
            > I'll continue to look through the archives, but let me try to ignore
            > the past and the future, and exist solely in the present. So …
            >
            >
            > Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical individual in
            > despair?
            >
            >
            > Mederic, lets wait and see if Willy gives us a straight answer.
            >
            >
            > Jim
            >
          • jimstuart46
            Jim R, Let me paste the text of your last two posts on the topics of repentance and the ethical individual: Jim R (6582): Will s quotation is, I think,
            Message 5 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
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              Jim R,

              Let me paste the text of your last two posts on the topics of
              repentance and the ethical individual:

              Jim R (6582): Will's quotation is, I think, pivotal. We enter the
              ethical -through the act of sin-. I don't think we should
              underestimate K's (or his pseudonym's) reliance upon the Genesis
              story for a model. Adam and Eve in a state of innocence/ignorance
              were unselfconscious, they were "naked and unashamed." Once they
              took on knowledge through sin, they became self-conscious as well
              (dressed themselves in leaves). You can even say they consciously
              become selves at this point. This means is that -self consciousness
              is only possible through sin-. If there is some transition from
              innocence/the aesthetic to unsinful self-consciousness, I don't think
              we see any representation of that anywhere except for Christ
              himself.

              So Kierkegaard's ethical individual is one who has already sinned,
              who has taken responsibility for this self who has sinned, who has an
              ethical ideal, and who is committed to living up to it. The crisis
              for the ethical individual comes when he/she realizes s/he's never
              been able to live up to this ethical ideal and probably never will.
              Guilt, despair, etc. The options at this point are intense guilt to
              the point of insanity, an ironic reversion to the aesthetic, or the
              religious sphere.

              Jim R (6594): I think to categorically say, "the ethical individual
              is in despair" would be a mistake. Probably more accurate to
              say, "the ethical individual is -either- moving toward despair -or-
              is in despair."

              Jim S (now): I think what you write here about the ethical individual
              is excellent, particularly what you say about the connection between
              self-consciousness and sin.

              However, you give the impression that you read K as arguing that the
              aesthete has not sinned, and is not in despair. Rather, he is in a
              state of innocence, like Adam and Eve before the fall.

              Is this what you think?

              My problem with this is two fold. First, in SUD, Anti-Climacus states
              that the person who lives the aesthetic life is in despair –
              admittedly a very shallow despair, and the individual is so lacking
              in self-knowledge, he does not even realize that he is in despair.

              Second, do you really what to say that the aesthete you wrote "The
              Diary of the Seducer" was completely innocent? Did he not sin? Did he
              not exist in despair?


              As for the question of whether the ethical individual is always in
              despair, I wish to may two points. First, I read Judge William as
              arguing that the transition from the aesthetic way of existing to the
              ethical way of existence essentially involves absolute repentance.
              Repentance essentially involves consciousness of guilt.

              Consciousness of sin comes later with the transition to the sphere of
              Religiousness B. I hope you are not confusing and conflating a
              person sinning (or being in a state of sin) and the person being
              conscious of sin. These are two very different things – a point I
              thought we cleared up years ago.

              Finally, I think Anti-Climacus would say bluntly "the ethical
              individual is in despair". Again you have to distinguish between an
              individual being in despair, and an individual being conscious of
              being in despair. Arguably the ethical individual in the early days
              after his transition from the aesthetic sphere of existence, may
              believe he has the necessary qualities to be morally perfect, and so
              he may not be conscious of being in despair. Consciousness of his own
              despair, according to K's Christian outlook, only comes when he tries
              and fails to be morally perfect through his own efforts.

              The ethical individual is in despair because he does not realize that
              he depends on God, and he needs to put his absolute trust in God.

              Jim S
            • Will Brown
              Message 6 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
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                << Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical individual in despair?>>

                First, the bent answer: I assume you are asking if I think SK is saying that there is an ending of despair in the transition from the esthetic to the ethical. If so, a straight answer follows:

                Yes, I think that; and if you were to ask me to show why I think that, I have collected below a few of the quotes I would use to show the why of that thinking. I would assume that your counter to these quotes is that they are talking about the 'leap' to Religiousness-B, instead of the transition from the esthetic to the ethical, and off we would go again.  [wb]   

                "Despair is a disrelationship in one's innermost being; no fate or event can penetrate so far and so deep; events can only make manifest—that the disrelationship was there. For this reason there is only assurance against despair: to undergo the transformation of the eternal through 'you shall'; everyone who has not undergone this transformation is in despair. For this reason there is only one assurance against despair: to undergo the transformation of the eternal through duty's "you shall"; everyone who has not undergone this transformation is in despair." (WL, Hong, p. 54)

                "No, the esthetic category of spiritlessness does not provide the criterion for what is and what is not despair; what must be applied is the ethical-religious category; spirit, or negatively, the lack of spirit, spiritlessness. Every human existence that is not conscious of itself as spirit or conscious of itself before God as spirit, every human existence that does not rest transparently in God but vaguely rests in and merges in some abstract universality (state, nation, etc.) or, in the dark about his self, regards his capacities merely as powers to produce without becoming deeply aware of their source, regards his self, if it is to have intrinsic meaning, as an indefinable something—every such existence, whatever it achieves, be it most amazing, whatever it explains, be it the whole of existence, however intensively it enjoys life esthetically—every such existence is nevertheless despair." (SUD, Hong, p. 46, Lowrie, p. 179)

                "For the act of resignation faith is not required, for what I gain by resignation is my eternal consciousness, and this is a purely philosophical movement which I dare say I am able to make if it is required, and which I can train myself to make, for whenever any finiteness would get the mastery over me, I starve myself until I can make the movement, for my eternal consciousness is my love to God, and for me this is higher than everything. For the act of resignation faith is not required, but it is needed when it is the case of acquiring the very least thing more than my eternal consciousness, for this is the paradoxical. The movements are frequently confounded, for it is said that one needs faith to renounce the claim to everything, yea, a stranger thing than this may be heard, when a man laments the loss of his faith, and when one looks at the scale to see where he is, one sees, strangely enough, that he has only reached the point where he should make the infinite movement of resignation. In resignation I make renunciation of everything, this movement I make by myself, and if I do not make it, it is because I am cowardly and effeminate and without enthusiasm and do not feel the significance of the lofty dignity which is assigned to every man, that of being his own censor, which is a far prouder title than that of Censor General to the whole Roman Republic. This movement I make by myself, and what I gain is myself in my eternal consciousness, in blissful agreement with my love for the Eternal Being. By faith I make renunciation of nothing, on the contrary, by faith I acquire everything, precisely in the sense in which it is said that he who has faith like a grain of mustard can remove mountains. A purely human courage is required to renounce the whole of the temporal to gain the eternal; but this I gain, and to all eternity I cannot renounce it—that is a self-contradiction. But a paradoxical and humble courage is required to grasp the whole of the temporal by virtue of the absurd, and this is the courage of faith." (F&T, Lowrie, p. 59: Hong, p. 48-49)

                "If there were no eternal consciousness in a man, if at the foundation of all there lay only a wildly seething power which writhing with obscure passion produced everything that is great and everything that is insignificant, if a bottomless void never satiated lay hidden beneath all—what then would life be but despair?" (Fear & Trembling, Lowrie, p. 30; Hong, p. 15)   

                "It is obvious, then, that the temporal order cannot be the transparent medium of the Eternal. In its given reality the temporal order is in conflict with the Eternal. This makes the determination to accomplish something less plain. The more active the Eternal is toward the witness, the stronger is the cleavage. The more the striver, instead of willing the Eternal, is linked with temporal existence, the more he accomplishes in the sense of the temporal existence. So it is in many ways or in all possible ways in the temporal order.  (PH, Steere, p. 136)

                "For, after all, what is eternity's accounting other than that the voice of conscience is forever installed with its eternal right to be the exclusive voice? What is it other than that throughout eternity an infinite stillness reigns wherein the conscience may talk with the individual about what he, as an individual, of what he has done of Good or of evil, and about the fact that during his life he did not wish to be an individual? What is it other than that within eternity there is infinite space so that each person, as an individual, is apart with his conscience? For in eternity there is no mob pressure, no crowd, no hiding place in the crowd, as little as there are riots or street fights! Here in the temporal order conscience is prepared to make each person into an individual.  (PH, Steere, p. 186)  x

                "But in eternity, conscience is the only voice that is heard. It must be heard by the individual, for the individual has become the eternal echo of this voice. It must be heard. There is no place to flee from it. For in the infinite there is no place, the individual is himself the place." (PH, Steere, p. 186) 

                "In eternity there are chambers enough so that each may be placed alone in one. For wherever conscience is present, and it is and shall be present in each person, there exists in eternity a lonely prison, or the blessed chamber of salvation. On that account this consciousness of being an individual is the primary consciousness in a man, which is his eternal consciousness." (PH, Steere, p. 193) 


                --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, Médéric Laitier <hidepark21@...> wrote:
                >
                > A straight answer from that bent junkie? Methinks we'll have to wait for
                > a long, long, long time...
                >
                > But wait and see... There can be miracles.
                >
                > Mederic
                >
                >
                > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "jimstuart46" jjimstuart@
                > wrote:
                > >
                > > Mederic,
                > >
                > > I have done a cursory search of the archives, without coming up with
                > > an exact statement on Willy's part.
                > >
                > > I think message 5137 is quite revealing. I put it to Willy that Anti-
                > > Climacus would say that Judge William (clearly an ethical
                > > individual) was in despair, but if you read carefully, you will see
                > > that Willy does not answer me directly, and subtly changes the
                > > subject.
                > >
                > > I'll continue to look through the archives, but let me try to ignore
                > > the past and the future, and exist solely in the present. So …
                > >
                > >
                > > Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical individual in
                > > despair?
                > >
                > >
                > > Mederic, lets wait and see if Willy gives us a straight answer.
                > >
                > >
                > > Jim
                > >
                >
              • James Rovira
                Jim S: Thanks for the thoughtful reply. Most of your questions are prompted by imprecision of language on my part. The word innocence in Kierkegaard s
                Message 7 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
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                  Jim S:

                  Thanks for the thoughtful reply.  Most of your questions are prompted by imprecision of language on my part.  The word "innocence" in Kierkegaard's works, for example, can refer to a moral state ( i.e., a person who has never sinned) or it can refer to an existential state (i.e., persons who don't clearly distinguish themselves from their environment).  I'm using the same word with two meanings without carefully distinguishing between the two meanings.  I should probably reserve the word "innocent" for the first person and use the word "aesthetic" for the second. 

                  So I would now qualify my previous statement by saying that one kind of aesthetic personality is like Adam and Eve before the fall, never having sinned (perhaps the state of "dreaming desire"?), but that not all aesthetic personalities fit this category.  At what point we become guilty of sin is a theological discussion.  I don't think K engages this discussion directly--he's more concerned with our psycho-existential development, so consciousness of guilt and then consciousness of sin are more important to him than God's opinion of the state of our souls at any given moment.

                  The person who wrote "Diary of a Seducer" (assuming it's not a fictional account--assuming it's someone's real diary) is certainly guilty of sin in Christian terms -- quite a few, actually.  I should have said he was an "aesthetic" character.  He's "innocent" like Adam and Eve in that he's unselfconscious, but not morally innocent like Adam and Eve.  I think whatever he was feeling at the very beginning, when he's running away, is guilt pressing upon his consciousness before he's ready to acknowledge it as guilt.  Once he does say, "I am guilty" he becomes self-conscious and can enter the Ethical sphere.  Or, he may just take an ironic stance toward his feelings of guilt and engage in deliberate self-deception. 

                  I'm not sure...he may still be an ethical subjectivity at this point, just one in denial. 

                  So of course someone can be an aesthetic character and have sinned.  And yes, we're in agreement when I that this person is probably not conscious of sin as sin and perhaps only vaguely aware of it as guilt.  I think what I've said in the past is that RB subjectivities look back on their lives and understand their past as characterized by sin, although at the time they didn't understand their guilt in those terms.

                  And yes, thank you for the reminder that we can be in despair without being aware of it.  That's an important addition -- I didn't think of it because I haven't read SUD in awhile.  So my statement in my previous post about being in despair or moving toward it has to do with conscious awareness of despair, not with the actual state of despair.

                  Willy--

                  I'd say your first quotation from WL could apply to the ethical.

                  The second quotation contrasts a despairing aesthetic personality (the spiritless) with either an RA or an RB personality, but it's not clear that this author considers anything like RA.

                  The third quotation refers to an RA personality, I think.   I'd need to reread FT to really make this argument, though.

                  I think the fourth quotation refers to an RA personality or an RB personality. 

                  The last three quotations could describe the ethical personality.

                  The problem here is that the "ethical" as we've been discussing it is the product of JW's writing in E/O II, maybe supplemented by Climacus a bit in CUP.  But other pseudonyms have different conceptions of the ethical.  Haufniensis makes a clear distinction between "first ethics," which would be the ethical of Judge William, and "second ethics," which is ethics from a Christian point of view.  In the first it is assumed that the person has the ability to carry out an ethical demand just because of the validity of the demand.  In the second inability is assumed, so help is offered in the form of forgiveness.  The first is susceptible to despair, the second is not.  Forgiveness drives out despair.

                  Jim R

                • Bill
                  Jim S., When you write that one becomes conscious of sin, conscious of what? Your understanding of sin seems self-serving and circular, and never is able to
                  Message 8 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
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                    Jim S., When you write that one becomes conscious of sin, conscious
                    of what? Your understanding of sin seems self-serving and circular,
                    and never is able to forget that one is spirit. Bill
                    --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "jimstuart46"
                    <jjimstuart@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Jim R,
                    >
                    > Let me paste the text of your last two posts on the topics of
                    > repentance and the ethical individual:
                    >
                    > Jim R (6582): Will's quotation is, I think, pivotal. We enter the
                    > ethical -through the act of sin-. I don't think we should
                    > underestimate K's (or his pseudonym's) reliance upon the Genesis
                    > story for a model. Adam and Eve in a state of innocence/ignorance
                    > were unselfconscious, they were "naked and unashamed." Once they
                    > took on knowledge through sin, they became self-conscious as well
                    > (dressed themselves in leaves). You can even say they consciously
                    > become selves at this point. This means is that -self
                    consciousness
                    > is only possible through sin-. If there is some transition from
                    > innocence/the aesthetic to unsinful self-consciousness, I don't
                    think
                    > we see any representation of that anywhere except for Christ
                    > himself.
                    >
                    > So Kierkegaard's ethical individual is one who has already sinned,
                    > who has taken responsibility for this self who has sinned, who has
                    an
                    > ethical ideal, and who is committed to living up to it. The crisis
                    > for the ethical individual comes when he/she realizes s/he's never
                    > been able to live up to this ethical ideal and probably never
                    will.
                    > Guilt, despair, etc. The options at this point are intense guilt
                    to
                    > the point of insanity, an ironic reversion to the aesthetic, or the
                    > religious sphere.
                    >
                    > Jim R (6594): I think to categorically say, "the ethical individual
                    > is in despair" would be a mistake. Probably more accurate to
                    > say, "the ethical individual is -either- moving toward despair -or-
                    > is in despair."
                    >
                    > Jim S (now): I think what you write here about the ethical
                    individual
                    > is excellent, particularly what you say about the connection
                    between
                    > self-consciousness and sin.
                    >
                    > However, you give the impression that you read K as arguing that
                    the
                    > aesthete has not sinned, and is not in despair. Rather, he is in a
                    > state of innocence, like Adam and Eve before the fall.
                    >
                    > Is this what you think?
                    >
                    > My problem with this is two fold. First, in SUD, Anti-Climacus
                    states
                    > that the person who lives the aesthetic life is in despair –
                    > admittedly a very shallow despair, and the individual is so lacking
                    > in self-knowledge, he does not even realize that he is in despair.
                    >
                    > Second, do you really what to say that the aesthete you wrote "The
                    > Diary of the Seducer" was completely innocent? Did he not sin? Did
                    he
                    > not exist in despair?
                    >
                    >
                    > As for the question of whether the ethical individual is always in
                    > despair, I wish to may two points. First, I read Judge William as
                    > arguing that the transition from the aesthetic way of existing to
                    the
                    > ethical way of existence essentially involves absolute repentance.
                    > Repentance essentially involves consciousness of guilt.
                    >
                    > Consciousness of sin comes later with the transition to the sphere
                    of
                    > Religiousness B. I hope you are not confusing and conflating a
                    > person sinning (or being in a state of sin) and the person being
                    > conscious of sin. These are two very different things – a point I
                    > thought we cleared up years ago.
                    >
                    > Finally, I think Anti-Climacus would say bluntly "the ethical
                    > individual is in despair". Again you have to distinguish between an
                    > individual being in despair, and an individual being conscious of
                    > being in despair. Arguably the ethical individual in the early days
                    > after his transition from the aesthetic sphere of existence, may
                    > believe he has the necessary qualities to be morally perfect, and
                    so
                    > he may not be conscious of being in despair. Consciousness of his
                    own
                    > despair, according to K's Christian outlook, only comes when he
                    tries
                    > and fails to be morally perfect through his own efforts.
                    >
                    > The ethical individual is in despair because he does not realize
                    that
                    > he depends on God, and he needs to put his absolute trust in God.
                    >
                    > Jim S
                    >
                  • Médéric Laitier
                    My Lord, There can be miracles! An answer, an answer! What on Earth is happening? Is the Sun still shining? Hasn t the Sea gone? Is it already Christmas time?
                    Message 9 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
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                      My Lord,

                      There can be miracles! An answer, an answer! What on Earth is happening? Is the Sun still shining? Hasn't the Sea gone? Is it already Christmas time?

                      My goodness, there is definitely nothing that can be relied on in this world!

                      Grrrrrr!
                      Meddy




                      --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "Will Brown" <wilbro99@...> wrote:
                      >
                      >
                      > << Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical individual in
                      > despair?>>
                      >
                      > First, the bent answer: I assume you are asking if I think SK is saying
                      > that there is an ending of despair in the transition from the esthetic
                      > to the ethical. If so, a straight answer follows:
                      >
                      > Yes, I think that; and if you were to ask me to show why I think that, I
                      > have collected below a few of the quotes I would use to show the why of
                      > that thinking. I would assume that your counter to these quotes is that
                      > they are talking about the 'leap' to Religiousness-B, instead of the
                      > transition from the esthetic to the ethical, and off we would go again.
                      > [wb]
                      >
                      > "Despair is a disrelationship in one's innermost being; no fate or event
                      > can penetrate so far and so deep; events can only make manifest—that
                      > the disrelationship was there. For this reason there is only assurance
                      > against despair: to undergo the transformation of the eternal through
                      > 'you shall'; everyone who has not undergone this transformation is in
                      > despair. For this reason there is only one assurance against despair: to
                      > undergo the transformation of the eternal through duty's "you shall";
                      > everyone who has not undergone this transformation is in despair." (WL,
                      > Hong, p. 54)
                      >
                      > "No, the esthetic category of spiritlessness does not provide the
                      > criterion for what is and what is not despair; what must be applied is
                      > the ethical-religious category; spirit, or negatively, the lack of
                      > spirit, spiritlessness. Every human existence that is not conscious of
                      > itself as spirit or conscious of itself before God as spirit, every
                      > human existence that does not rest transparently in God but vaguely
                      > rests in and merges in some abstract universality (state, nation, etc.)
                      > or, in the dark about his self, regards his capacities merely as powers
                      > to produce without becoming deeply aware of their source, regards his
                      > self, if it is to have intrinsic meaning, as an indefinable
                      > something—every such existence, whatever it achieves, be it most
                      > amazing, whatever it explains, be it the whole of existence, however
                      > intensively it enjoys life esthetically—every such existence is
                      > nevertheless despair." (SUD, Hong, p. 46, Lowrie, p. 179)
                      >
                      > "For the act of resignation faith is not required, for what I gain by
                      > resignation is my eternal consciousness, and this is a purely
                      > philosophical movement which I dare say I am able to make if it is
                      > required, and which I can train myself to make, for whenever any
                      > finiteness would get the mastery over me, I starve myself until I can
                      > make the movement, for my eternal consciousness is my love to God, and
                      > for me this is higher than everything. For the act of resignation faith
                      > is not required, but it is needed when it is the case of acquiring the
                      > very least thing more than my eternal consciousness, for this is the
                      > paradoxical. The movements are frequently confounded, for it is said
                      > that one needs faith to renounce the claim to everything, yea, a
                      > stranger thing than this may be heard, when a man laments the loss of
                      > his faith, and when one looks at the scale to see where he is, one sees,
                      > strangely enough, that he has only reached the point where he should
                      > make the infinite movement of resignation. In resignation I make
                      > renunciation of everything, this movement I make by myself, and if I do
                      > not make it, it is because I am cowardly and effeminate and without
                      > enthusiasm and do not feel the significance of the lofty dignity which
                      > is assigned to every man, that of being his own censor, which is a far
                      > prouder title than that of Censor General to the whole Roman Republic.
                      > This movement I make by myself, and what I gain is myself in my eternal
                      > consciousness, in blissful agreement with my love for the Eternal Being.
                      > By faith I make renunciation of nothing, on the contrary, by faith I
                      > acquire everything, precisely in the sense in which it is said that he
                      > who has faith like a grain of mustard can remove mountains. A purely
                      > human courage is required to renounce the whole of the temporal to gain
                      > the eternal; but this I gain, and to all eternity I cannot renounce
                      > it—that is a self-contradiction. But a paradoxical and humble
                      > courage is required to grasp the whole of the temporal by virtue of the
                      > absurd, and this is the courage of faith." (F&T, Lowrie, p. 59: Hong, p.
                      > 48-49)
                      >
                      > "If there were no eternal consciousness in a man, if at the foundation
                      > of all there lay only a wildly seething power which writhing with
                      > obscure passion produced everything that is great and everything that is
                      > insignificant, if a bottomless void never satiated lay hidden beneath
                      > all—what then would life be but despair?" (Fear & Trembling, Lowrie,
                      > p. 30; Hong, p. 15)
                      >
                      > "It is obvious, then, that the temporal order cannot be the transparent
                      > medium of the Eternal. In its given reality the temporal order is in
                      > conflict with the Eternal. This makes the determination to accomplish
                      > something less plain. The more active the Eternal is toward the witness,
                      > the stronger is the cleavage. The more the striver, instead of willing
                      > the Eternal, is linked with temporal existence, the more he accomplishes
                      > in the sense of the temporal existence. So it is in many ways or in all
                      > possible ways in the temporal order. (PH, Steere, p. 136)
                      >
                      > "For, after all, what is eternity's accounting other than that the
                      > voice of conscience is forever installed with its eternal right to be
                      > the exclusive voice? What is it other than that throughout eternity an
                      > infinite stillness reigns wherein the conscience may talk with the
                      > individual about what he, as an individual, of what he has done of Good
                      > or of evil, and about the fact that during his life he did not wish to
                      > be an individual? What is it other than that within eternity there is
                      > infinite space so that each person, as an individual, is apart with his
                      > conscience? For in eternity there is no mob pressure, no crowd, no
                      > hiding place in the crowd, as little as there are riots or street
                      > fights! Here in the temporal order conscience is prepared to make each
                      > person into an individual. (PH, Steere, p. 186) x
                      >
                      > "But in eternity, conscience is the only voice that is heard. It must be
                      > heard by the individual, for the individual has become the eternal echo
                      > of this voice. It must be heard. There is no place to flee from it. For
                      > in the infinite there is no place, the individual is himself the place."
                      > (PH, Steere, p. 186)
                      >
                      > "In eternity there are chambers enough so that each may be placed alone
                      > in one. For wherever conscience is present, and it is and shall be
                      > present in each person, there exists in eternity a lonely prison, or the
                      > blessed chamber of salvation. On that account this consciousness of
                      > being an individual is the primary consciousness in a man, which is his
                      > eternal consciousness." (PH, Steere, p. 193)
                      >
                      > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, Médéric Laitier
                      > hidepark21@ wrote:
                      > >
                      > > A straight answer from that bent junkie? Methinks we'll have to wait
                      > for
                      > > a long, long, long time...
                      > >
                      > > But wait and see... There can be miracles.
                      > >
                      > > Mederic
                      > >
                      > >
                      > > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "jimstuart46" jjimstuart@
                      > > wrote:
                      > > >
                      > > > Mederic,
                      > > >
                      > > > I have done a cursory search of the archives, without coming up with
                      > > > an exact statement on Willy's part.
                      > > >
                      > > > I think message 5137 is quite revealing. I put it to Willy that
                      > Anti-
                      > > > Climacus would say that Judge William (clearly an ethical
                      > > > individual) was in despair, but if you read carefully, you will see
                      > > > that Willy does not answer me directly, and subtly changes the
                      > > > subject.
                      > > >
                      > > > I'll continue to look through the archives, but let me try to ignore
                      > > > the past and the future, and exist solely in the present. So …
                      > > >
                      > > >
                      > > > Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical individual in
                      > > > despair?
                      > > >
                      > > >
                      > > > Mederic, lets wait and see if Willy gives us a straight answer.
                      > > >
                      > > >
                      > > > Jim
                      > > >
                      > >
                      >
                    • Bill
                      Meedy, Since when is spirit qualified by knowing what is a miracle? Kierkegaard doesn t understand spirit by looking at a tea kettle. It is not a miracle that
                      Message 10 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
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                        Meedy, Since when is spirit qualified by knowing what is a miracle?
                        Kierkegaard doesn't understand spirit by looking at a tea kettle. It
                        is not a miracle that we understand spirit from any chance encounter.
                        It requires a radical turning of everything inside out.

                        It is absurd that we suddenly become aware of the "light" by which
                        the truth is revealed in the world. Our relationship to such a
                        msytery is always beyond our understanding, and has nothing to do
                        with what is revealed, but what is hidden from any point of view of
                        the subject.
                        --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, Médéric Laitier
                        <hidepark21@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > My Lord,
                        >
                        > There can be miracles! An answer, an answer! What on Earth is
                        happening?
                        > Is the Sun still shining? Hasn't the Sea gone? Is it already
                        Christmas
                        > time?
                        >
                        > My goodness, there is definitely nothing that can be relied on in
                        this
                        > world!
                        >
                        > Grrrrrr!
                        > Meddy
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "Will Brown" <wilbro99@>
                        > wrote:
                        > >
                        > >
                        > > << Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical individual
                        in
                        > > despair?>>
                        > >
                        > > First, the bent answer: I assume you are asking if I think SK is
                        > saying
                        > > that there is an ending of despair in the transition from the
                        esthetic
                        > > to the ethical. If so, a straight answer follows:
                        > >
                        > > Yes, I think that; and if you were to ask me to show why I think
                        that,
                        > I
                        > > have collected below a few of the quotes I would use to show the
                        why
                        > of
                        > > that thinking. I would assume that your counter to these quotes is
                        > that
                        > > they are talking about the 'leap' to Religiousness-B, instead of
                        the
                        > > transition from the esthetic to the ethical, and off we would go
                        > again.
                        > > [wb]
                        > >
                        > > "Despair is a disrelationship in one's innermost being; no fate or
                        > event
                        > > can penetrate so far and so deep; events can only make
                        > manifest—that
                        > > the disrelationship was there. For this reason there is only
                        assurance
                        > > against despair: to undergo the transformation of the eternal
                        through
                        > > 'you shall'; everyone who has not undergone this transformation
                        is in
                        > > despair. For this reason there is only one assurance against
                        despair:
                        > to
                        > > undergo the transformation of the eternal through duty's "you
                        shall";
                        > > everyone who has not undergone this transformation is in despair."
                        > (WL,
                        > > Hong, p. 54)
                        > >
                        > > "No, the esthetic category of spiritlessness does not provide the
                        > > criterion for what is and what is not despair; what must be
                        applied is
                        > > the ethical-religious category; spirit, or negatively, the lack of
                        > > spirit, spiritlessness. Every human existence that is not
                        conscious of
                        > > itself as spirit or conscious of itself before God as spirit,
                        every
                        > > human existence that does not rest transparently in God but
                        vaguely
                        > > rests in and merges in some abstract universality (state, nation,
                        > etc.)
                        > > or, in the dark about his self, regards his capacities merely as
                        > powers
                        > > to produce without becoming deeply aware of their source, regards
                        his
                        > > self, if it is to have intrinsic meaning, as an indefinable
                        > > something—every such existence, whatever it achieves, be it most
                        > > amazing, whatever it explains, be it the whole of existence,
                        however
                        > > intensively it enjoys life esthetically—every such existence is
                        > > nevertheless despair." (SUD, Hong, p. 46, Lowrie, p. 179)
                        > >
                        > > "For the act of resignation faith is not required, for what I
                        gain by
                        > > resignation is my eternal consciousness, and this is a purely
                        > > philosophical movement which I dare say I am able to make if it is
                        > > required, and which I can train myself to make, for whenever any
                        > > finiteness would get the mastery over me, I starve myself until I
                        can
                        > > make the movement, for my eternal consciousness is my love to
                        God, and
                        > > for me this is higher than everything. For the act of resignation
                        > faith
                        > > is not required, but it is needed when it is the case of
                        acquiring the
                        > > very least thing more than my eternal consciousness, for this is
                        the
                        > > paradoxical. The movements are frequently confounded, for it is
                        said
                        > > that one needs faith to renounce the claim to everything, yea, a
                        > > stranger thing than this may be heard, when a man laments the
                        loss of
                        > > his faith, and when one looks at the scale to see where he is, one
                        > sees,
                        > > strangely enough, that he has only reached the point where he
                        should
                        > > make the infinite movement of resignation. In resignation I make
                        > > renunciation of everything, this movement I make by myself, and
                        if I
                        > do
                        > > not make it, it is because I am cowardly and effeminate and
                        without
                        > > enthusiasm and do not feel the significance of the lofty dignity
                        which
                        > > is assigned to every man, that of being his own censor, which is
                        a far
                        > > prouder title than that of Censor General to the whole Roman
                        Republic.
                        > > This movement I make by myself, and what I gain is myself in my
                        > eternal
                        > > consciousness, in blissful agreement with my love for the Eternal
                        > Being.
                        > > By faith I make renunciation of nothing, on the contrary, by
                        faith I
                        > > acquire everything, precisely in the sense in which it is said
                        that he
                        > > who has faith like a grain of mustard can remove mountains. A
                        purely
                        > > human courage is required to renounce the whole of the temporal to
                        > gain
                        > > the eternal; but this I gain, and to all eternity I cannot
                        renounce
                        > > it—that is a self-contradiction. But a paradoxical and humble
                        > > courage is required to grasp the whole of the temporal by virtue
                        of
                        > the
                        > > absurd, and this is the courage of faith." (F&T, Lowrie, p. 59:
                        Hong,
                        > p.
                        > > 48-49)
                        > >
                        > > "If there were no eternal consciousness in a man, if at the
                        foundation
                        > > of all there lay only a wildly seething power which writhing with
                        > > obscure passion produced everything that is great and everything
                        that
                        > is
                        > > insignificant, if a bottomless void never satiated lay hidden
                        beneath
                        > > all—what then would life be but despair?" (Fear & Trembling,
                        > Lowrie,
                        > > p. 30; Hong, p. 15)
                        > >
                        > > "It is obvious, then, that the temporal order cannot be the
                        > transparent
                        > > medium of the Eternal. In its given reality the temporal order is
                        in
                        > > conflict with the Eternal. This makes the determination to
                        accomplish
                        > > something less plain. The more active the Eternal is toward the
                        > witness,
                        > > the stronger is the cleavage. The more the striver, instead of
                        willing
                        > > the Eternal, is linked with temporal existence, the more he
                        > accomplishes
                        > > in the sense of the temporal existence. So it is in many ways or
                        in
                        > all
                        > > possible ways in the temporal order. (PH, Steere, p. 136)
                        > >
                        > > "For, after all, what is eternity's accounting other than that the
                        > > voice of conscience is forever installed with its eternal right
                        to be
                        > > the exclusive voice? What is it other than that throughout
                        eternity an
                        > > infinite stillness reigns wherein the conscience may talk with the
                        > > individual about what he, as an individual, of what he has done of
                        > Good
                        > > or of evil, and about the fact that during his life he did not
                        wish to
                        > > be an individual? What is it other than that within eternity
                        there is
                        > > infinite space so that each person, as an individual, is apart
                        with
                        > his
                        > > conscience? For in eternity there is no mob pressure, no crowd, no
                        > > hiding place in the crowd, as little as there are riots or street
                        > > fights! Here in the temporal order conscience is prepared to make
                        each
                        > > person into an individual. (PH, Steere, p. 186) x
                        > >
                        > > "But in eternity, conscience is the only voice that is heard. It
                        must
                        > be
                        > > heard by the individual, for the individual has become the eternal
                        > echo
                        > > of this voice. It must be heard. There is no place to flee from
                        it.
                        > For
                        > > in the infinite there is no place, the individual is himself the
                        > place."
                        > > (PH, Steere, p. 186)
                        > >
                        > > "In eternity there are chambers enough so that each may be placed
                        > alone
                        > > in one. For wherever conscience is present, and it is and shall be
                        > > present in each person, there exists in eternity a lonely prison,
                        or
                        > the
                        > > blessed chamber of salvation. On that account this consciousness
                        of
                        > > being an individual is the primary consciousness in a man, which
                        is
                        > his
                        > > eternal consciousness." (PH, Steere, p. 193)
                        > >
                        > > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, Médéric Laitier
                        > > hidepark21@ wrote:
                        > > >
                        > > > A straight answer from that bent junkie? Methinks we'll have to
                        wait
                        > > for
                        > > > a long, long, long time...
                        > > >
                        > > > But wait and see... There can be miracles.
                        > > >
                        > > > Mederic
                        > > >
                        > > >
                        > > > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "jimstuart46"
                        jjimstuart@
                        > > > wrote:
                        > > > >
                        > > > > Mederic,
                        > > > >
                        > > > > I have done a cursory search of the archives, without coming
                        up
                        > with
                        > > > > an exact statement on Willy's part.
                        > > > >
                        > > > > I think message 5137 is quite revealing. I put it to Willy
                        that
                        > > Anti-
                        > > > > Climacus would say that Judge William (clearly an ethical
                        > > > > individual) was in despair, but if you read carefully, you
                        will
                        > see
                        > > > > that Willy does not answer me directly, and subtly changes the
                        > > > > subject.
                        > > > >
                        > > > > I'll continue to look through the archives, but let me try to
                        > ignore
                        > > > > the past and the future, and exist solely in the present. So …
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > > Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical
                        individual in
                        > > > > despair?
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > > Mederic, lets wait and see if Willy gives us a straight
                        answer.
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > > Jim
                        > > > >
                        > > >
                        > >
                        >
                      • Médéric Laitier
                        ... Absolutely! Although, it may rain tomorrow. ... most ... is ... …
                        Message 11 of 15 , Nov 3, 2007
                        • 0 Attachment
                          --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "Bill" <billybob98103@...>
                          wrote:
                          >
                          > Meedy, Since when is spirit qualified by knowing what is a miracle?
                          > Kierkegaard doesn't understand spirit by looking at a tea kettle. It
                          > is not a miracle that we understand spirit from any chance encounter.
                          > It requires a radical turning of everything inside out.
                          >
                          > It is absurd that we suddenly become aware of the "light" by which
                          > the truth is revealed in the world. Our relationship to such a
                          > msytery is always beyond our understanding, and has nothing to do
                          > with what is revealed, but what is hidden from any point of view of
                          > the subject.



                          Absolutely! Although, it may rain tomorrow.



                          > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, Médéric Laitier
                          > hidepark21@ wrote:
                          > >
                          > > My Lord,
                          > >
                          > > There can be miracles! An answer, an answer! What on Earth is
                          > happening?
                          > > Is the Sun still shining? Hasn't the Sea gone? Is it already
                          > Christmas
                          > > time?
                          > >
                          > > My goodness, there is definitely nothing that can be relied on in
                          > this
                          > > world!
                          > >
                          > > Grrrrrr!
                          > > Meddy
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "Will Brown" <wilbro99@>
                          > > wrote:
                          > > >
                          > > >
                          > > > << Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical individual
                          > in
                          > > > despair?>>
                          > > >
                          > > > First, the bent answer: I assume you are asking if I think SK is
                          > > saying
                          > > > that there is an ending of despair in the transition from the
                          > esthetic
                          > > > to the ethical. If so, a straight answer follows:
                          > > >
                          > > > Yes, I think that; and if you were to ask me to show why I think
                          > that,
                          > > I
                          > > > have collected below a few of the quotes I would use to show the
                          > why
                          > > of
                          > > > that thinking. I would assume that your counter to these quotes is
                          > > that
                          > > > they are talking about the 'leap' to Religiousness-B, instead of
                          > the
                          > > > transition from the esthetic to the ethical, and off we would go
                          > > again.
                          > > > [wb]
                          > > >
                          > > > "Despair is a disrelationship in one's innermost being; no fate or
                          > > event
                          > > > can penetrate so far and so deep; events can only make
                          > > manifest—that
                          > > > the disrelationship was there. For this reason there is only
                          > assurance
                          > > > against despair: to undergo the transformation of the eternal
                          > through
                          > > > 'you shall'; everyone who has not undergone this transformation
                          > is in
                          > > > despair. For this reason there is only one assurance against
                          > despair:
                          > > to
                          > > > undergo the transformation of the eternal through duty's "you
                          > shall";
                          > > > everyone who has not undergone this transformation is in despair."
                          > > (WL,
                          > > > Hong, p. 54)
                          > > >
                          > > > "No, the esthetic category of spiritlessness does not provide the
                          > > > criterion for what is and what is not despair; what must be
                          > applied is
                          > > > the ethical-religious category; spirit, or negatively, the lack of
                          > > > spirit, spiritlessness. Every human existence that is not
                          > conscious of
                          > > > itself as spirit or conscious of itself before God as spirit,
                          > every
                          > > > human existence that does not rest transparently in God but
                          > vaguely
                          > > > rests in and merges in some abstract universality (state, nation,
                          > > etc.)
                          > > > or, in the dark about his self, regards his capacities merely as
                          > > powers
                          > > > to produce without becoming deeply aware of their source, regards
                          > his
                          > > > self, if it is to have intrinsic meaning, as an indefinable
                          > > > something—every such existence, whatever it achieves, be it
                          most
                          > > > amazing, whatever it explains, be it the whole of existence,
                          > however
                          > > > intensively it enjoys life esthetically—every such existence
                          is
                          > > > nevertheless despair." (SUD, Hong, p. 46, Lowrie, p. 179)
                          > > >
                          > > > "For the act of resignation faith is not required, for what I
                          > gain by
                          > > > resignation is my eternal consciousness, and this is a purely
                          > > > philosophical movement which I dare say I am able to make if it is
                          > > > required, and which I can train myself to make, for whenever any
                          > > > finiteness would get the mastery over me, I starve myself until I
                          > can
                          > > > make the movement, for my eternal consciousness is my love to
                          > God, and
                          > > > for me this is higher than everything. For the act of resignation
                          > > faith
                          > > > is not required, but it is needed when it is the case of
                          > acquiring the
                          > > > very least thing more than my eternal consciousness, for this is
                          > the
                          > > > paradoxical. The movements are frequently confounded, for it is
                          > said
                          > > > that one needs faith to renounce the claim to everything, yea, a
                          > > > stranger thing than this may be heard, when a man laments the
                          > loss of
                          > > > his faith, and when one looks at the scale to see where he is, one
                          > > sees,
                          > > > strangely enough, that he has only reached the point where he
                          > should
                          > > > make the infinite movement of resignation. In resignation I make
                          > > > renunciation of everything, this movement I make by myself, and
                          > if I
                          > > do
                          > > > not make it, it is because I am cowardly and effeminate and
                          > without
                          > > > enthusiasm and do not feel the significance of the lofty dignity
                          > which
                          > > > is assigned to every man, that of being his own censor, which is
                          > a far
                          > > > prouder title than that of Censor General to the whole Roman
                          > Republic.
                          > > > This movement I make by myself, and what I gain is myself in my
                          > > eternal
                          > > > consciousness, in blissful agreement with my love for the Eternal
                          > > Being.
                          > > > By faith I make renunciation of nothing, on the contrary, by
                          > faith I
                          > > > acquire everything, precisely in the sense in which it is said
                          > that he
                          > > > who has faith like a grain of mustard can remove mountains. A
                          > purely
                          > > > human courage is required to renounce the whole of the temporal to
                          > > gain
                          > > > the eternal; but this I gain, and to all eternity I cannot
                          > renounce
                          > > > it—that is a self-contradiction. But a paradoxical and humble
                          > > > courage is required to grasp the whole of the temporal by virtue
                          > of
                          > > the
                          > > > absurd, and this is the courage of faith." (F&T, Lowrie, p. 59:
                          > Hong,
                          > > p.
                          > > > 48-49)
                          > > >
                          > > > "If there were no eternal consciousness in a man, if at the
                          > foundation
                          > > > of all there lay only a wildly seething power which writhing with
                          > > > obscure passion produced everything that is great and everything
                          > that
                          > > is
                          > > > insignificant, if a bottomless void never satiated lay hidden
                          > beneath
                          > > > all—what then would life be but despair?" (Fear & Trembling,
                          > > Lowrie,
                          > > > p. 30; Hong, p. 15)
                          > > >
                          > > > "It is obvious, then, that the temporal order cannot be the
                          > > transparent
                          > > > medium of the Eternal. In its given reality the temporal order is
                          > in
                          > > > conflict with the Eternal. This makes the determination to
                          > accomplish
                          > > > something less plain. The more active the Eternal is toward the
                          > > witness,
                          > > > the stronger is the cleavage. The more the striver, instead of
                          > willing
                          > > > the Eternal, is linked with temporal existence, the more he
                          > > accomplishes
                          > > > in the sense of the temporal existence. So it is in many ways or
                          > in
                          > > all
                          > > > possible ways in the temporal order. (PH, Steere, p. 136)
                          > > >
                          > > > "For, after all, what is eternity's accounting other than that the
                          > > > voice of conscience is forever installed with its eternal right
                          > to be
                          > > > the exclusive voice? What is it other than that throughout
                          > eternity an
                          > > > infinite stillness reigns wherein the conscience may talk with the
                          > > > individual about what he, as an individual, of what he has done of
                          > > Good
                          > > > or of evil, and about the fact that during his life he did not
                          > wish to
                          > > > be an individual? What is it other than that within eternity
                          > there is
                          > > > infinite space so that each person, as an individual, is apart
                          > with
                          > > his
                          > > > conscience? For in eternity there is no mob pressure, no crowd, no
                          > > > hiding place in the crowd, as little as there are riots or street
                          > > > fights! Here in the temporal order conscience is prepared to make
                          > each
                          > > > person into an individual. (PH, Steere, p. 186) x
                          > > >
                          > > > "But in eternity, conscience is the only voice that is heard. It
                          > must
                          > > be
                          > > > heard by the individual, for the individual has become the eternal
                          > > echo
                          > > > of this voice. It must be heard. There is no place to flee from
                          > it.
                          > > For
                          > > > in the infinite there is no place, the individual is himself the
                          > > place."
                          > > > (PH, Steere, p. 186)
                          > > >
                          > > > "In eternity there are chambers enough so that each may be placed
                          > > alone
                          > > > in one. For wherever conscience is present, and it is and shall be
                          > > > present in each person, there exists in eternity a lonely prison,
                          > or
                          > > the
                          > > > blessed chamber of salvation. On that account this consciousness
                          > of
                          > > > being an individual is the primary consciousness in a man, which
                          > is
                          > > his
                          > > > eternal consciousness." (PH, Steere, p. 193)
                          > > >
                          > > > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, Médéric Laitier
                          > > > hidepark21@ wrote:
                          > > > >
                          > > > > A straight answer from that bent junkie? Methinks we'll have to
                          > wait
                          > > > for
                          > > > > a long, long, long time...
                          > > > >
                          > > > > But wait and see... There can be miracles.
                          > > > >
                          > > > > Mederic
                          > > > >
                          > > > >
                          > > > > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "jimstuart46"
                          > jjimstuart@
                          > > > > wrote:
                          > > > > >
                          > > > > > Mederic,
                          > > > > >
                          > > > > > I have done a cursory search of the archives, without coming
                          > up
                          > > with
                          > > > > > an exact statement on Willy's part.
                          > > > > >
                          > > > > > I think message 5137 is quite revealing. I put it to Willy
                          > that
                          > > > Anti-
                          > > > > > Climacus would say that Judge William (clearly an ethical
                          > > > > > individual) was in despair, but if you read carefully, you
                          > will
                          > > see
                          > > > > > that Willy does not answer me directly, and subtly changes the
                          > > > > > subject.
                          > > > > >
                          > > > > > I'll continue to look through the archives, but let me try to
                          > > ignore
                          > > > > > the past and the future, and exist solely in the present. So
                          …
                          > > > > >
                          > > > > >
                          > > > > > Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical
                          > individual in
                          > > > > > despair?
                          > > > > >
                          > > > > >
                          > > > > > Mederic, lets wait and see if Willy gives us a straight
                          > answer.
                          > > > > >
                          > > > > >
                          > > > > > Jim
                          > > > > >
                          > > > >
                          > > >
                          > >
                          >
                        • jimstuart46
                          Willy, This is a response to your posts 6601 and 6604. Thank you for giving the Hong translation of the CUP passage Médéric translated from the French. As
                          Message 12 of 15 , Nov 4, 2007
                          • 0 Attachment
                            Willy,

                            This is a response to your posts 6601 and 6604.

                            Thank you for giving the Hong translation of the CUP passage Médéric
                            translated from the French. As you say, there is a difference in
                            meaning between the two translations.

                            Thank you also for your list of quotes on the subject of despair. As
                            you guess, I would associate the majority of those quotes, if not all
                            of them, with the transition into the sphere of Religiousness B.

                            I agree with you that there doesn't seem much point in us engaging in
                            a discussion of whether the ethical individual is in despair, as we
                            would be just repeating our previous discussions, and, in your
                            appropriate phrase, "flogging a dead horse".

                            I'll just summarize my reasons for opposing your position. I see the
                            decisive text for K's account of despair being "The Sickness unto
                            Death". Here is what his pseudonym Anti-Climacus writes near the
                            middle of the book:

                            "But the opposite to being in despair is to have faith. And so what
                            was earlier proposed as the formula for describing a state in which
                            no despair exists at all, is quite correct, for it is also the
                            formula for faith: in relating to itself and in wanting to be itself,
                            the self is grounded transparently in the power that established it."
                            (SUD, Hannay, p. 79)

                            Even you must admit that throughout K's books, the ethical individual
                            is described as an existing human being, but not as an individual who
                            has faith. Hence, K's emphasis that two infinite movements are
                            necessary: first repentance or infinite resignation which moves the
                            individual into the ethical (or ethico-religious) sphere; then second
                            the leap to faith which moves the individual into the sphere of
                            Religiousness B.

                            Even if we should regard all K's pseudonyms as saying exactly the
                            same thing, it seems clear to me that the ethical individual is
                            different from the individual who has faith.

                            On the topic of the pseudonyms, I have not got around to reading
                            Mederic's paper yet, but I agree with Jim R that the pseudonyms do
                            have different perspectives. Judge William has the perspective of the
                            ethical individual, so he sees the ethical way of existing as the
                            highest way of existing. He makes the error of trusting in himself,
                            and not trusting in God, so as Johannes Climacus says, he has not
                            reached level of the religious sphere.

                            Anti-Climacus is an individual with faith – possibly the only one of
                            K's pseudonyms who is actually "higher" that K himself. From Anti-
                            Climacus' perspective, the ethical individual can have consciousness
                            of what despair is, can be conscious that he is in despair, and thus
                            can have a fair amount of consciousness of his own self. Judge
                            William does not seem to have reached this level, as he does not
                            appear to have any consciousness of his own despair. Thus he is an
                            ethical individual without any consciousness of his own despair.

                            Jim
                          • Bill
                            Meedy, I m not sure if you mean that someone can become so deranged by finding a model of perfection to forget to get out of the rain? My point is that there
                            Message 13 of 15 , Nov 4, 2007
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                              Meedy, I'm not sure if you mean that someone can become so deranged
                              by finding a model of perfection to forget to get out of the rain?

                              My point is that there is not one flowing world as if one is more
                              open to such a world thanks to the immanent qualities that define
                              that world.

                              Rather the self refuses to stay in its place, by succeeding to will
                              itself forward to will itself to begin. There is no inner sense of
                              inter-connectivity to konw how to understand what happened or what is
                              going to happen. One may get out of the rain, or one may play in it
                              depending on how this experience unfolds. Being totally out of place
                              is the strength of the self.

                              Despair is a move backwards to where oneself begain - as if one
                              already begain without knowing it! Bill


                              --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, Médéric Laitier
                              <hidepark21@...> wrote:
                              >
                              >
                              > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "Bill" <billybob98103@>
                              > wrote:
                              > >
                              > > Meedy, Since when is spirit qualified by knowing what is a
                              miracle?
                              > > Kierkegaard doesn't understand spirit by looking at a tea
                              kettle. It
                              > > is not a miracle that we understand spirit from any chance
                              encounter.
                              > > It requires a radical turning of everything inside out.
                              > >
                              > > It is absurd that we suddenly become aware of the "light" by which
                              > > the truth is revealed in the world. Our relationship to such a
                              > > msytery is always beyond our understanding, and has nothing to do
                              > > with what is revealed, but what is hidden from any point of view
                              of
                              > > the subject.
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > Absolutely! Although, it may rain tomorrow.
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, Médéric Laitier
                              > > hidepark21@ wrote:
                              > > >
                              > > > My Lord,
                              > > >
                              > > > There can be miracles! An answer, an answer! What on Earth is
                              > > happening?
                              > > > Is the Sun still shining? Hasn't the Sea gone? Is it already
                              > > Christmas
                              > > > time?
                              > > >
                              > > > My goodness, there is definitely nothing that can be relied on
                              in
                              > > this
                              > > > world!
                              > > >
                              > > > Grrrrrr!
                              > > > Meddy
                              > > >
                              > > >
                              > > >
                              > > >
                              > > > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "Will Brown" <wilbro99@>
                              > > > wrote:
                              > > > >
                              > > > >
                              > > > > << Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical
                              individual
                              > > in
                              > > > > despair?>>
                              > > > >
                              > > > > First, the bent answer: I assume you are asking if I think SK
                              is
                              > > > saying
                              > > > > that there is an ending of despair in the transition from the
                              > > esthetic
                              > > > > to the ethical. If so, a straight answer follows:
                              > > > >
                              > > > > Yes, I think that; and if you were to ask me to show why I
                              think
                              > > that,
                              > > > I
                              > > > > have collected below a few of the quotes I would use to show
                              the
                              > > why
                              > > > of
                              > > > > that thinking. I would assume that your counter to these
                              quotes is
                              > > > that
                              > > > > they are talking about the 'leap' to Religiousness-B, instead
                              of
                              > > the
                              > > > > transition from the esthetic to the ethical, and off we would
                              go
                              > > > again.
                              > > > > [wb]
                              > > > >
                              > > > > "Despair is a disrelationship in one's innermost being; no
                              fate or
                              > > > event
                              > > > > can penetrate so far and so deep; events can only make
                              > > > manifest—that
                              > > > > the disrelationship was there. For this reason there is only
                              > > assurance
                              > > > > against despair: to undergo the transformation of the eternal
                              > > through
                              > > > > 'you shall'; everyone who has not undergone this
                              transformation
                              > > is in
                              > > > > despair. For this reason there is only one assurance against
                              > > despair:
                              > > > to
                              > > > > undergo the transformation of the eternal through duty's "you
                              > > shall";
                              > > > > everyone who has not undergone this transformation is in
                              despair."
                              > > > (WL,
                              > > > > Hong, p. 54)
                              > > > >
                              > > > > "No, the esthetic category of spiritlessness does not provide
                              the
                              > > > > criterion for what is and what is not despair; what must be
                              > > applied is
                              > > > > the ethical-religious category; spirit, or negatively, the
                              lack of
                              > > > > spirit, spiritlessness. Every human existence that is not
                              > > conscious of
                              > > > > itself as spirit or conscious of itself before God as spirit,
                              > > every
                              > > > > human existence that does not rest transparently in God but
                              > > vaguely
                              > > > > rests in and merges in some abstract universality (state,
                              nation,
                              > > > etc.)
                              > > > > or, in the dark about his self, regards his capacities merely
                              as
                              > > > powers
                              > > > > to produce without becoming deeply aware of their source,
                              regards
                              > > his
                              > > > > self, if it is to have intrinsic meaning, as an indefinable
                              > > > > something—every such existence, whatever it achieves, be it
                              > most
                              > > > > amazing, whatever it explains, be it the whole of existence,
                              > > however
                              > > > > intensively it enjoys life esthetically—every such existence
                              > is
                              > > > > nevertheless despair." (SUD, Hong, p. 46, Lowrie, p. 179)
                              > > > >
                              > > > > "For the act of resignation faith is not required, for what I
                              > > gain by
                              > > > > resignation is my eternal consciousness, and this is a purely
                              > > > > philosophical movement which I dare say I am able to make if
                              it is
                              > > > > required, and which I can train myself to make, for whenever
                              any
                              > > > > finiteness would get the mastery over me, I starve myself
                              until I
                              > > can
                              > > > > make the movement, for my eternal consciousness is my love to
                              > > God, and
                              > > > > for me this is higher than everything. For the act of
                              resignation
                              > > > faith
                              > > > > is not required, but it is needed when it is the case of
                              > > acquiring the
                              > > > > very least thing more than my eternal consciousness, for this
                              is
                              > > the
                              > > > > paradoxical. The movements are frequently confounded, for it
                              is
                              > > said
                              > > > > that one needs faith to renounce the claim to everything,
                              yea, a
                              > > > > stranger thing than this may be heard, when a man laments the
                              > > loss of
                              > > > > his faith, and when one looks at the scale to see where he
                              is, one
                              > > > sees,
                              > > > > strangely enough, that he has only reached the point where he
                              > > should
                              > > > > make the infinite movement of resignation. In resignation I
                              make
                              > > > > renunciation of everything, this movement I make by myself,
                              and
                              > > if I
                              > > > do
                              > > > > not make it, it is because I am cowardly and effeminate and
                              > > without
                              > > > > enthusiasm and do not feel the significance of the lofty
                              dignity
                              > > which
                              > > > > is assigned to every man, that of being his own censor, which
                              is
                              > > a far
                              > > > > prouder title than that of Censor General to the whole Roman
                              > > Republic.
                              > > > > This movement I make by myself, and what I gain is myself in
                              my
                              > > > eternal
                              > > > > consciousness, in blissful agreement with my love for the
                              Eternal
                              > > > Being.
                              > > > > By faith I make renunciation of nothing, on the contrary, by
                              > > faith I
                              > > > > acquire everything, precisely in the sense in which it is said
                              > > that he
                              > > > > who has faith like a grain of mustard can remove mountains. A
                              > > purely
                              > > > > human courage is required to renounce the whole of the
                              temporal to
                              > > > gain
                              > > > > the eternal; but this I gain, and to all eternity I cannot
                              > > renounce
                              > > > > it—that is a self-contradiction. But a paradoxical and humble
                              > > > > courage is required to grasp the whole of the temporal by
                              virtue
                              > > of
                              > > > the
                              > > > > absurd, and this is the courage of faith." (F&T, Lowrie, p.
                              59:
                              > > Hong,
                              > > > p.
                              > > > > 48-49)
                              > > > >
                              > > > > "If there were no eternal consciousness in a man, if at the
                              > > foundation
                              > > > > of all there lay only a wildly seething power which writhing
                              with
                              > > > > obscure passion produced everything that is great and
                              everything
                              > > that
                              > > > is
                              > > > > insignificant, if a bottomless void never satiated lay hidden
                              > > beneath
                              > > > > all—what then would life be but despair?" (Fear & Trembling,
                              > > > Lowrie,
                              > > > > p. 30; Hong, p. 15)
                              > > > >
                              > > > > "It is obvious, then, that the temporal order cannot be the
                              > > > transparent
                              > > > > medium of the Eternal. In its given reality the temporal
                              order is
                              > > in
                              > > > > conflict with the Eternal. This makes the determination to
                              > > accomplish
                              > > > > something less plain. The more active the Eternal is toward
                              the
                              > > > witness,
                              > > > > the stronger is the cleavage. The more the striver, instead of
                              > > willing
                              > > > > the Eternal, is linked with temporal existence, the more he
                              > > > accomplishes
                              > > > > in the sense of the temporal existence. So it is in many ways
                              or
                              > > in
                              > > > all
                              > > > > possible ways in the temporal order. (PH, Steere, p. 136)
                              > > > >
                              > > > > "For, after all, what is eternity's accounting other than
                              that the
                              > > > > voice of conscience is forever installed with its eternal
                              right
                              > > to be
                              > > > > the exclusive voice? What is it other than that throughout
                              > > eternity an
                              > > > > infinite stillness reigns wherein the conscience may talk
                              with the
                              > > > > individual about what he, as an individual, of what he has
                              done of
                              > > > Good
                              > > > > or of evil, and about the fact that during his life he did not
                              > > wish to
                              > > > > be an individual? What is it other than that within eternity
                              > > there is
                              > > > > infinite space so that each person, as an individual, is apart
                              > > with
                              > > > his
                              > > > > conscience? For in eternity there is no mob pressure, no
                              crowd, no
                              > > > > hiding place in the crowd, as little as there are riots or
                              street
                              > > > > fights! Here in the temporal order conscience is prepared to
                              make
                              > > each
                              > > > > person into an individual. (PH, Steere, p. 186) x
                              > > > >
                              > > > > "But in eternity, conscience is the only voice that is heard.
                              It
                              > > must
                              > > > be
                              > > > > heard by the individual, for the individual has become the
                              eternal
                              > > > echo
                              > > > > of this voice. It must be heard. There is no place to flee
                              from
                              > > it.
                              > > > For
                              > > > > in the infinite there is no place, the individual is himself
                              the
                              > > > place."
                              > > > > (PH, Steere, p. 186)
                              > > > >
                              > > > > "In eternity there are chambers enough so that each may be
                              placed
                              > > > alone
                              > > > > in one. For wherever conscience is present, and it is and
                              shall be
                              > > > > present in each person, there exists in eternity a lonely
                              prison,
                              > > or
                              > > > the
                              > > > > blessed chamber of salvation. On that account this
                              consciousness
                              > > of
                              > > > > being an individual is the primary consciousness in a man,
                              which
                              > > is
                              > > > his
                              > > > > eternal consciousness." (PH, Steere, p. 193)
                              > > > >
                              > > > > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, Médéric Laitier
                              > > > > hidepark21@ wrote:
                              > > > > >
                              > > > > > A straight answer from that bent junkie? Methinks we'll
                              have to
                              > > wait
                              > > > > for
                              > > > > > a long, long, long time...
                              > > > > >
                              > > > > > But wait and see... There can be miracles.
                              > > > > >
                              > > > > > Mederic
                              > > > > >
                              > > > > >
                              > > > > > --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "jimstuart46"
                              > > jjimstuart@
                              > > > > > wrote:
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > > > Mederic,
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > > > I have done a cursory search of the archives, without
                              coming
                              > > up
                              > > > with
                              > > > > > > an exact statement on Willy's part.
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > > > I think message 5137 is quite revealing. I put it to Willy
                              > > that
                              > > > > Anti-
                              > > > > > > Climacus would say that Judge William (clearly an ethical
                              > > > > > > individual) was in despair, but if you read carefully, you
                              > > will
                              > > > see
                              > > > > > > that Willy does not answer me directly, and subtly
                              changes the
                              > > > > > > subject.
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > > > I'll continue to look through the archives, but let me
                              try to
                              > > > ignore
                              > > > > > > the past and the future, and exist solely in the present.
                              So
                              > …
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > > > Willy, a question for you: Is Kierkegaard's ethical
                              > > individual in
                              > > > > > > despair?
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > > > Mederic, lets wait and see if Willy gives us a straight
                              > > answer.
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > > > Jim
                              > > > > > >
                              > > > > >
                              > > > >
                              > > >
                              > >
                              >
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