Inasmuch as in being published it is in a figurative sense starting a journey, I let my eyes follow it for a little while. I saw how it wended its way down solitary paths or walked solitary on public roads. It stood there like a humble little flower under the cover of the great forest, sought neither for its splendor nor its fragrance nor its food value. But I also saw, or thought I saw, how the bird I call my reader suddenly noticed it, flew down to it, picked it, and took it home, and when I had seen this, I saw no more. Copenhagen, May 5, Preface The Expectancy of Faith[ edit ] There is talk of the good things of the world, of health, happy times, prosperity, power, good fortune, a glorious fame.
|Published (Last):||6 January 2009|
|PDF File Size:||6.58 Mb|
|ePub File Size:||5.67 Mb|
|Price:||Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]|
Inasmuch as in being published it is in a figurative sense starting a journey, I let my eyes follow it for a little while. I saw how it wended its way down solitary paths or walked solitary on public roads. It stood there like a humble little flower under the cover of the great forest, sought neither for its splendor nor its fragrance nor its food value.
But I also saw, or thought I saw, how the bird I call my reader suddenly noticed it, flew down to it, picked it, and took it home, and when I had seen this, I saw no more. Copenhagen, May 5, Preface The Expectancy of Faith[ edit ] There is talk of the good things of the world, of health, happy times, prosperity, power, good fortune, a glorious fame. And we are warned against them; the person who has them is warned not to rely on them, and the person who does not have them is warned not to set his heart on them.
About faith there is a different kind of talk. It is said to be the highest good, the most beautiful;, the most precious, the most blessed riches of all, not to be compared with anything else, incapable of being replaced. Is it distinguished from the other good things, then, by being the highest but otherwise of the same kind as they are-transient and capricious, bestowed only upon the chosen few, rarely for the whole of life?
If this were so, then it certainly would be inexplicable that in these sacred places it is always faith and faith alone that is spoken of, that it is eulogized and celebrated again and again. Eighteen Upbuilding Discourses, Hong, p. Worse yet, if I could do that, then the very moment I gave it to him I would be taking it from him, since by giving him the highest, I would be depriving him of the highest, because the highest was that he could give it to himself.
Therefore, I will thank God that this is not the way it is. The person who is expecting something is occupied with the future. When the sailor is out on the ocean, when everything is changing all around him, when the waves are born and die, he does not stare down into the waves, because they are changing. He looks up at the stars. Because they are faithful; they have the same location now that they had for our ancestors and will have for generations to come. By what means does he conquer the changeable?
By the eternal, one can conquer the future, because the eternal is the ground of the future, and therefore through it the future can be fathomed. What, then, is the eternal power in a human being? It is faith. What is the expectancy of faith? Victory-or, as Scripture so earnestly and so movingly teaches us, that all things must serve for good those who love God.
I am not deceived, since I did not believe that the world would keep the promise it seemed to be making to me, my expectancy was not in the world but in God. What shall I do? Accomplish something in the world, men tell me. Shall I then publish my grief to the world, contribute one more proof for the wretchedness and misery of existence, perhaps discover a new flaw in human life, hitherto unnoticed? I might then reap the rare reward of becoming famous, like the man who discovered the spots on Jupiter.
I prefer, however, to keep silent. We do not judge you for doubting, because doubt is a crafty passion, and it can certainly be difficult to tear oneself out of its snares. What we require of the doubter is that he be silent. That doubt did not make him happy-why then confide to others what will make them just as unhappy.
In the expectancy of faith, the soul is indeed prevented from falling out of itself, as it were, into multiplicity; it remains in itself, but it would be the worst evil that could befall a person if it escaped from this cycle.
And when the light sparkle of joy beckoned you, did you thank God for it? And when you were so strong that you felt you needed no help, did you then thank God? And when your allotted portion was little, did you thank God?
And when you allotted portion was sufferings, did you thank God? And when your wish was denied, did you thank God? And when you yourself had to deny your wish, did you thank God? And when people wronged you and insulted you, did you thank God? We are not saying that their wrong thereby ceased to be wrong-what would be the use of such pernicious and foolish talk! It is up to you to decide whether it was wrong; but have you taken the wrong and insult to God and by your thanksgiving received it from his hand as a good and perfect gift?
Did you do that? Did you treasure them in a pure and beautiful heart and refuse to be ransomed for any price or any wily bribe on the part of prudence, from the deep pain of having to confess again and again that you never loved as you were loved?
That you were faithless when God was faithful; that you were lukewarm when he was ardent; that he sent good gifts that you perverted to your own detriment; that he inquired about you but that you would not answer; that he called to you but you would not listen; that he spoke cordially to you but you ignored it; that he spoke earnestly to you but you misunderstood it; that he fulfilled your wish and for thanks you brought new wishes; that he fulfilled your wish but you had made the wrong wish and were quick to anger?
EIGHTEEN UPBUILDING DISCOURSES PDF
He lived all his life on his inheritance, using it to finance his literary career. At about this time, he became engaged to a woman he loved, but he broke the engagement when he decided that God had destined him not to marry. The years to were a period of intense literary activity for Kierkegaard, in which he produced his "authorship," a series of writings of varying forms published under a series of fantastic pseudonyms. Parallel to these, he wrote a series of shorter Edifying Discourses, quasi-sermons published under his own name.
Eighteen Upbuilding Discourses
His discourses stress love, joy, faith, gratitude, thanksgiving, peace, adversity, impartiality, and equality before God and recommends them to the single individual. These discourses are not the same as a sermon because a sermon is preached to a congregation while a discourse can be carried on between several people or even with oneself. These discourses or conversations should be "upbuilding", which means one would build up the other person, or oneself, rather than tear down in order to build up. Of course neither the God-man nor an apostle can have such a concern-but then I am just a poor human being. It means to be made ready for the one relation which can be entered into only by the Single One, the one; the relation for whose man exists. This relation is an exclusive one, the exclusive one, and this means, according to Kierkegaard, that it is the relations which in virtue of its unique essential life expels all other relations into the realm of the unessential.
Eighteen Upbuilding Discourses, Kierkegaard's Writings, Vol. 5