Faith and Philosophy - Essay Example

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Faith and Philosophy

The above passage seems to preclude the possibility of interpreting the previous passage. In other words, although he is “amazed” at Abraham’s actions, he also thinks that it is delusional to maintain that one will acquire “worldly wisdom out of the paradox”. This said, the above passage also qualifies that it is the “outcome” which is where the paradox follows. In other words, the absurdity itself is the ‘whole’ of the story, and the story is a metaphor for existence itself. Thus, an “infinite resignation” is a mode of action, and it is an action that works on the assumption that we cannot know “outcome” of our actions, but that we can have faith in the here and now, and the absurdity. But, it is an objectless ‘faith’. In other words, as Kierkegaard tells this parable, he is not telling this in terms of Abraham having faith in God’s benevolence (which is absurd because the Old Testament God is often a God of wrath) or the outcome of sacrificing Isaac. But, he has faith in the absurd or in paradox, God’s command, and further, he has an infinite resignation toward this as a modality of existing, or “by faith I receive everything”. What Kierkegaard has dismissed, is reason and understanding, and what he has embraced is resignation toward the infinite. By this, it does not mean that he is completely irrational, indeed, it would be difficult to write his books if such were the case, but that with respect to the invariable paradoxes of life he is advocating that we embrace them, or resign ourselves toward them. Finally, it is not God that is the focus, but the paradox of Abraham, and the courage and faith of his actions which Kierkegaard is using to demonstrate his idea of an ‘infinite resignation’ toward the absurd, which has the net outcome of receiving the ‘eternal’. To renounce everything temporal or finite, which is something one cannot acquire (“I cannot get the least little thing that belongs to finitude”), one is in a process of infinitely resigning. As a process of resigning, it is ongoing and seemingly infinite, and as a ‘mode’ of existence, because it is ‘infinite’ it brings forth the eternal through a leap of ‘faith’, and it is in this sense the ‘courage’ of the knight becomes necessary, given the isolation of this decision.  ...Show more

Summary

In the paper “Faith and Philosophy” the author examines historical and cultural reasons, the intellectual strains of nineteenth century that could be described in terms of being in a crisis. Nietzsche’s proclamation concerning the ‘death of god’ became the main them of author’s tool of analyzing this crisis…
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