Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

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Philosophy Now
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Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by Philosophy Now » Fri Feb 15, 2019 1:01 pm

Gordon Marino can’t wait to tell you about moral self-deception.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/130/Soren_Kierkegaard_On_the_Perils_of_Procrastination

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by -1- » Fri Feb 15, 2019 1:06 pm

Interesting read. Kierkegaard, according to the article's author, recognizes that morals are in-born and universal. He fails to explain why cultural differences exist in behaviour viewed as moral or virtuous or of valor.

Kierkegaard, again, according to the author, proposes that our moral compass gets eroded over our lifespan, because we get used to behaving immorally, or somewhat immorally.

He prescribes one medication for the ill of jadedness: reflection. However, I don't know which: Kierkegaard himself or else the author of the article, does recognize that reflection is a two-edged sword: it can hone our sense of justice and knowing what the right thing to do is, and conversely, it can aid our rationalization of cognitive dissonance when our outside interests conflict with our moral guide.

Best is to buy one of the series, the "Moral Guide for Dummies", and then you can't go wrong.

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by Belinda » Fri Feb 15, 2019 4:29 pm

it's amazing how the people I'm aware of in my life , including myself, are not scared stiff and panicking about the soon to come end of the human species and many other living species with us. Admirable exceptions are those schoolchildren who going on strike from their school work to bring to the attention of politicians the urgency of the matter of environmental degradation.

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by -1- » Sat Feb 16, 2019 9:54 am

Belinda wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 4:29 pm
it's amazing how the people I'm aware of in my life , including myself, are not scared stiff and panicking about the soon to come end of the human species and many other living species with us. Admirable exceptions are those schoolchildren who going on strike from their school work to bring to the attention of politicians the urgency of the matter of environmental degradation.
How does this connect to Kierkegaard and the article?

"Going on strike from their school work to protest"? The little nips have been told by somebody to do this. They don't have the cohesive social force to go and organize this en mass. Blame the teachers, the local PTAs, the publications like National Geographic.

You say they've used the Internet to get this organized? Those pre-teen-age monsters use the Internet only to bully each other and if someone shows weakness, or is fat or ugly, then they all jump on the bandwagon and abuse that hapless little kid until he or she commits suicide. THIS I believe is spontaneously organized, because the little tykes are highly motivated to do this. But striking and not doing their homework???

Belinda, are you a grandmother? And why are you hijacking this thread with Global Warming and Climate Change stuff when it's supposed to be about Kierkegaard? To you EVERYTHING is about global warming and blaming humankind for all ills in the world?

Say yes, please, if that is indeed the case.

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by Belinda » Sat Feb 16, 2019 2:07 pm

-1-, my message connects to Kierkegaard and the article because philosophy is a silly dilettantist activity unless it gets something done. Kierkegaard was not a dilettante. Quite the opposite, he claimed that we should act. The greatest danger facing us is environmental degradation and climate change. We should act. At least, if we will not or cannot act we should be aware that we are deficient.

As a matter of fact, schoolchildren are taught about environmental degradation and climate change, and the children who are demonstrating are doing what adults , especially those adults who have powers, ought to be doing.

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by Nick_A » Sun Feb 17, 2019 12:13 am

I really should request that this thread be deleted. It is too insulting to be taken seriously by educated human beings in these times. Kierkegaard introduces the essential problem of the human condition. Of course we now know that there is no human condition. All faults are the lack of education by experts so rather than paying any attention to such silliness we should concentrate on the important things like attacking Trump.

But to humor those who contemplate Kierkegaard. The source of the humn condition is that we are not one, we are many. The idea of inner unity expressed by I is an illusion. As Plato described in his Chariot analogy we have a higher and lower nature which come into conflict. Paul described it in Romans 7
14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. 15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature.[c] For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?
Sin can be defined as “missing the mark” or denying what is necessary for awakening towards inner unity. Einstein wrote of the necessity for activating conscience in ones being so what is good is experienced as something normal for us as opposed to an abnormality our society conditions us to believe as it does the opposite.

This is one of the ideas in the “Principles vs Pragmatism” thread. We are torn between what our higher nature feels as principles and what our lower nature pragmatically demands

Has our egoism become so dominant that we consider ourselves too advanced to ponder such ideas? If Plato was right in describing our two essential natures as black and white horses with the black horse having become corrupt and earth bound, how do we heal a sick horse? Jacob Needleman suggests in the conclusion of the preface in his book Lost Christianity the value of becoming willing to Know Thyself. But this is becoming increasingly rejected. It is believed all we need is proper education and the skill and dedication to indoctrinate the young into fashionable ideas of right and wrong with such intensity that they immediately react without thought. There is nothing to remember. Just do as you are taught. The idea of “Know Thyself” is officially being replaced by “Imagine Yourself” in accordance with the dictates of the Great Beast. Hopefully there will be enough left in the world who recognize the value of what it means to Know Thyself. Our collective future may depend on it.

From the preface to Lost Christianity:
But in fact, no such assumption of moral authority by secular humanism, has
taken hold or now seems in any way likely or justified. The modern era, the era of science, while witnessing the phenomenal acceleration of scientific discovery and its applications in technological innovation, has brought the world the inconceivable slaughter and chaos of modern war along with the despair of ethical dilemmas arising from new technologies that all at once project humanity’s essence-immorality onto the entire planet: global injustice, global heartlessness and the global disintegration of the normal patterns of life that have guided mankind for millenia. Neither the secular philosophies of our epoch nor its theories of human nature—pragmatism, positivism, Marxism, liberalism, humanism, behaviorism, biological determinism, psychoanalysis–nor the traditional doctrines of the religions, in the way we have understood them, seem able to confront or explain the crimes of humanity in our era, nor offer wise and compassionate guidance through the labyrinth of paralyzingly new ethical problems.

What is needed is a either a new understanding of God or a new understanding
of Man: an understanding of God that does not insult the scientific
mind, while offering bread, not a stone, to the deepest hunger of the
heart; or an understanding of Man that squarely faces the criminal
weakness of our moral will while holding out to us the knowledge of how we can strive within ourselves to become the fully human being we are meant to be– both for ourselves and as instruments of a higher purpose.

But, this is not an either/or. The premise –or, rather, the proposal—of this
book is that at the heart of the Christian religion there exists and
has always existed just such a vision of both God and Man. I call it
“lost Christianity” not because it is a matter of doctrines and concepts
that may have been lost or forgotten; nor even a matter of methods of
spiritual practice that may need to be recovered from ancient sources.
It is all that, to be sure, but what is lost in the whole of our modern
life, including our understanding of religion, is something even more fundamental, without which religious ideas and practices lose their meaning and all too
easily become the instruments of ignorance, fear and hatred. What
is lost is the experience of oneself, just oneself—myself, the personal
being who is here, now, living, breathing, yearning for meaning, for
goodness; just this person here, now, squarely confronting one’s own
existential weaknesses and pretensions while yet aware, however
tentatively, of a higher current of life and identity calling to us from
within ourselves. This presence to oneself is the missing element in
the whole of the life of Man, the intermediate state of consciousness
between what we are meant to be and what we actually are.
It is, perhaps, the one bridge that can lead us from our inhuman past
toward the human future.

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by dorothea » Sun Feb 17, 2019 7:42 pm

Belinda wrote:
Sat Feb 16, 2019 2:07 pm
-1-, my message connects to Kierkegaard and the article because philosophy is a silly dilettantist activity unless it gets something done. Kierkegaard was not a dilettante. Quite the opposite, he claimed that we should act. The greatest danger facing us is environmental degradation and climate change. We should act. At least, if we will not or cannot act we should be aware that we are deficient.

As a matter of fact, schoolchildren are taught about environmental degradation and climate change, and the children who are demonstrating are doing what adults , especially those adults who have powers, ought to be doing.
You really need to get out and about more. Less than 1% of the earth's land has humans on it and waters are human free. Kierkegaard railed against those who avoided their personal responsibilities and diverted themselves from truth by displacement activities as climate change has become (it was global warming till that vanished 25 years ago - and when has the climate not changed?) Not one of the people so exercised about this issue actually lives their own advice - for them it is what K. called pure thought, an escape from existence into the sort of whole-world systemising that he mocked in Hegel (and in his letter in this months edition) We are threatened by wars, dictators and the undefeatable ideology of hate from the middle east - and you want kids to miss school over something they do not understand.

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by vegetariantaxidermy » Sun Feb 17, 2019 9:03 pm

dorothea wrote:
Sun Feb 17, 2019 7:42 pm
Belinda wrote:
Sat Feb 16, 2019 2:07 pm
-1-, my message connects to Kierkegaard and the article because philosophy is a silly dilettantist activity unless it gets something done. Kierkegaard was not a dilettante. Quite the opposite, he claimed that we should act. The greatest danger facing us is environmental degradation and climate change. We should act. At least, if we will not or cannot act we should be aware that we are deficient.

As a matter of fact, schoolchildren are taught about environmental degradation and climate change, and the children who are demonstrating are doing what adults , especially those adults who have powers, ought to be doing.
You really need to get out and about more. Less than 1% of the earth's land has humans on it and waters are human free. Kierkegaard railed against those who avoided their personal responsibilities and diverted themselves from truth by displacement activities as climate change has become (it was global warming till that vanished 25 years ago - and when has the climate not changed?) Not one of the people so exercised about this issue actually lives their own advice - for them it is what K. called pure thought, an escape from existence into the sort of whole-world systemising that he mocked in Hegel (and in his letter in this months edition) We are threatened by wars, dictators and the undefeatable ideology of hate from the middle east - and you want kids to miss school over something they do not understand.
It's still global warming.

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by Belinda » Sun Feb 17, 2019 10:47 pm

dorothea wrote:
Sun Feb 17, 2019 7:42 pm
Belinda wrote:
Sat Feb 16, 2019 2:07 pm
-1-, my message connects to Kierkegaard and the article because philosophy is a silly dilettantist activity unless it gets something done. Kierkegaard was not a dilettante. Quite the opposite, he claimed that we should act. The greatest danger facing us is environmental degradation and climate change. We should act. At least, if we will not or cannot act we should be aware that we are deficient.

As a matter of fact, schoolchildren are taught about environmental degradation and climate change, and the children who are demonstrating are doing what adults , especially those adults who have powers, ought to be doing.
You really need to get out and about more. Less than 1% of the earth's land has humans on it and waters are human free. Kierkegaard railed against those who avoided their personal responsibilities and diverted themselves from truth by displacement activities as climate change has become (it was global warming till that vanished 25 years ago - and when has the climate not changed?) Not one of the people so exercised about this issue actually lives their own advice - for them it is what K. called pure thought, an escape from existence into the sort of whole-world systemising that he mocked in Hegel (and in his letter in this months edition) We are threatened by wars, dictators and the undefeatable ideology of hate from the middle east - and you want kids to miss school over something they do not understand.
But, Dorothea, the vast expanses of land and sea on Earth that are uninhabited by humans are also affected by human activity. Perhaps if you cannot understand 'global warming' and 'climate change' you can understand how the soil that grows your food is depleted of nutrients because of human activity; artificial fertilisers are made from fossil fuel. The insects that pollinate food crops are endangered.

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by Impenitent » Mon Feb 18, 2019 12:28 am

blind obedience to the metaphysics of global warming does not make one a knight of faith...

-Imp

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by Nick_A » Mon Feb 18, 2019 2:54 am

dorothea wrote:
Sun Feb 17, 2019 7:42 pm
Belinda wrote:
Sat Feb 16, 2019 2:07 pm
-1-, my message connects to Kierkegaard and the article because philosophy is a silly dilettantist activity unless it gets something done. Kierkegaard was not a dilettante. Quite the opposite, he claimed that we should act. The greatest danger facing us is environmental degradation and climate change. We should act. At least, if we will not or cannot act we should be aware that we are deficient.

As a matter of fact, schoolchildren are taught about environmental degradation and climate change, and the children who are demonstrating are doing what adults , especially those adults who have powers, ought to be doing.
You really need to get out and about more. Less than 1% of the earth's land has humans on it and waters are human free. Kierkegaard railed against those who avoided their personal responsibilities and diverted themselves from truth by displacement activities as climate change has become (it was global warming till that vanished 25 years ago - and when has the climate not changed?) Not one of the people so exercised about this issue actually lives their own advice - for them it is what K. called pure thought, an escape from existence into the sort of whole-world systemising that he mocked in Hegel (and in his letter in this months edition) We are threatened by wars, dictators and the undefeatable ideology of hate from the middle east - and you want kids to miss school over something they do not understand.
It is the modern way. Secularism seeks to create scapegoats in order to acquire power and control. Kierkegaard understood that the essential problem for humanity is the human condition itself and why we don't live as human beings. Of course thinking in this way is too insulting to be taken seriously so it will remain fashionable to blame scapegoats in the attempt to acquire the power to get ones way rather than confront the fallen human condition.

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by dorothea » Mon Feb 18, 2019 8:10 am

Entirely agree. One can imagine Nietzsche commenting on the desperate ways people try to get power over others these days- the wild conspiracy theories and growth of extremist politics and anti-Semitism in Europe. We are battered and bewildered by information and cling to any straw to escape ourselves.

dorothea
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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by dorothea » Mon Feb 18, 2019 8:23 am

But, Dorothea, the vast expanses of land and sea on Earth that are uninhabited by humans are also affected by human activity. Perhaps if you cannot understand 'global warming' and 'climate change' you can understand how the soil that grows your food is depleted of nutrients because of human activity; artificial fertilisers are made from fossil fuel. The insects that pollinate food crops are endangered.

You can travel across canada, Russia, and parts of South America and see not a shred of humanity's presence, never mind the unexplored ocean depths. If the climate is changing - as it always has, even Heraclitus knew that - sure we need to alleviate the harms it may do to us. Climate is not linear - there are multiple factors affecting it. To claim people are the one and only is pretty arrogant and self-infatuated. Only good people should love themselves, said Aristotle, and Hom Sap is not a species anyone would describe as good. Know Thyself was first uttered by a pre-Socratic (whose name escapes) and it has been the way of philosophers since, especially SK who is under discussion. I largely agree with your claim that philosophy should focus on action - for me that's ethics and only ethics - and speculations about Mind, etc are amusing but as worthless as crossword puzzles (and as daft as much modern physics, parallel wormholes and the Stephen Hawking fairy tales.)

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by -1- » Mon Feb 18, 2019 12:54 pm

Belinda wrote:
Sat Feb 16, 2019 2:07 pm
-1-, my message connects to Kierkegaard and the article because philosophy is a silly dilettantist activity unless it gets something done. Kierkegaard was not a dilettante. Quite the opposite, he claimed that we should act. The greatest danger facing us is environmental degradation and climate change. We should act.
No, no. Philosophy stops short of the action, it creates only a theoretical reference point. When you say we should act on climate change, you are becoming political, and you abandoned all philosophy.

According to your definition, the following people were completely useless dilettantes:
- Socrates
- Aristotle
- Kant
- Confucius
- Sartre
- the Buddha
- Gichimanido
- etc. etc. etc.

You are confusing philosophy with politics. Both have their places in society, both fulfil necessary functions. But they are separate, they are different from each other.

You must not claim that philosophy teaches action. No it does not. It may be used to direct ourselves toward one line of action, or toward another, but then it is used as a tool, not that its essence would be to direct us.

I think you are very, very wrong in this attitude that philosophy in and by itself, without attaching an action function to it, is useless. It is not useless, but it has completely different uses to what politics is used for. You only seem to accept one use, that of politics, but you reject the usefulness of other endeavours, on a completely ignorant and subjective basis. That is wrong.

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Re: Søren Kierkegaard On the Perils of Procrastination

Post by Belinda » Mon Feb 18, 2019 1:12 pm

-1- we probably agree about essential ethics. I see the reasonableness of your point of view about the value of philosophy as an academic activity. My approach to your point of view is by way of philosophy as an art. Art may seem to have no practical application but this is not true. The function of art is to indicate truth, goodness, or beauty in particular forms and idioms and so too is the function of philosophy to seek truth, goodness, and beauty.

I think kit's our duty to truth, goodness, and beauty to pay attention and try to seek. To try to seek is not to procrastinate.

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