Monday, October 28, 2013

The Idea For Which I Can Live and Die

Because I wanted to take part in “Inspirational Monday” over at Happy Medley, I decided to share one of the most profound quotes I have ever read (though I cut a chunk out because I don’t want to overwhelm those who have not already discovered a love for philosophy).

When I was taking my first philosophy class in college I developed a love for Kierkegaard. I still remember when I first read these words… I felt life pumping through me because I felt exactly this way but I just struggled to find the words.

“What I really lack is to be clear in my mind what I am to do, not what I am to know, except insofar as a certain understanding must precede every action. The thing is to understand myself, to see what God really wishes me to do; the thing is to find a truth which is true for me, to find the idea for which I can live and die…What good would it do me to be able to explain the meaning of Christianity if it had no deeper significance for me and for my life; - what good would it do me if truth stood before me, cold and naked, not caring whether I recognized her or not, and producing in me a shudder of fear rather than a trusting devotion? I certainly do not deny that I still recognize an imperative of understanding and that through it one can work upon men, but it must be taken up into my life, and that is what I now recognize as the most important thing.”
- Soren Kierkegaard

It was a long time ago that I read this quote for the first time. The words still resonate in my spirit in a way which is difficult to explain.

It was in 1835 that this great philosopher penned these words upon the page. The world has changed vastly since then, yet I feel the same way. It is nothing to merely know the truth and do nothing about it. It is nothing to proclaim to others that you are a Christian without allowing those principles to take root in your life.

Therefore this quote is acting like a catalyst within me, encouraging me to think and write down those ideas. Very often they will be the silly musings of a young girl, but sometimes I hope I will touch on points which will resonate in another’s soul like this quote has within me. 

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