risking it all

I have been reading Wisdom in Love: Kierkegaard and the Ancient Quest for Emotional Integrity by Rick Anthony Furtak. It has been on my list for a while and it was on special so I thought I might as well. I have been thinking about emotions a lot and this book really hits the spot on that topic.

So here is a quote from the Introduction:

One uncomfortable truth which emerges from this inquiry is that we cannot sustain the emotions that hold us together without accepting the risk of suffering the emotions that tear us apart.

All life involves risk! Maybe that is the fundamental problem with people today?! (Sorry, that is really judgemental and generalised.) Maybe that is the fundamental problem with me!? Life always involves risk because it always involves faith.

I did a quick google (as you do!) and found this article: Kierkegaard on the Psychology of a Risk Averse Society. It is worth a read.

So my point? I think we have become a society that likes to watch because we like to play it safe. It is much more fun watching someone else do the risky thing. More fun watching the “love story” or the “adventure movie” than loving or acting ourselves. But can we really grow (spiritually or emotionally) if we never risk? With the risk of being wrong can we ever really be right? Without the risk of hate can there ever really be love?

existentialism defined?

“Existentialism”, therefore, may be defined as the philosophical theory which holds that a further set of categories, governed by the norm of authenticity, is necessary to grasp human existence. To approach existentialism in this categorial way may seem to conceal what is often taken to be its “heart” (Kaufmann 1968: 12), namely, its character as a gesture of protest against academic philosophy, its anti-system sensibility, its flight from the “iron cage” of reason. But while it is true that the major existential philosophers wrote with a passion and urgency rather uncommon in our own time, and while the idea that philosophy cannot be practiced in the disinterested manner of an objective science is indeed central to existentialism, it is equally true that all the themes popularly associated with existentialism—dread, boredom, alienation, the absurd, freedom, commitment, nothingness, and so on—find their philosophical significance in the context of the search for a new categorial framework, together with its governing norm.

Existentialism (Standford)