It's Monday morning, therefore: Kierkegaard!

I just had dinner last night with an old friend of mine who told me that, while visiting Copenhagen this year, he was invited to a dinner at the Kierkegaard Society. It was apparently a quite serious affair, that dinner. Not a lot of goofing off. (It was actually an affair at which, my friend swears, all the men and women alike in attendance seemed to have invisible long grey beards.)

My friend was, unexpectedly, asked to speak about what Kierkegaard means to him. (I have nightmares of being trapped in scenarios exactly like this, by the way.) But he was able to rise to the occasion, and offered up a brief praise of Kierkegaard's belief that the goal of life and of faith is to "arrive at immediacy, after reflection."

This line made my heart beat a little bit harder, so I thought I would share it with you. IMMEDIACY, AFTER REFLECTION. This is the great balance. Not to be constantly leaping, yet not to be never leaping, either. Pause, think it over, and then leap. This idea of sudden and decisive action after a period of intense concentration (a shout after a silence) — this is one of my favorite sensations in the world.

This morning, as I went digging on the Webnets for the exact quote (I think it's: "Faith is immediacy after reflection"), I discovered another yet Kierkegaardian gem:

"Everything depends upon passionate concentration."

Do you all agree with that?

For I agree. With all my heart. And now I want more, so it looks like maybe it's time to learn Danish.

Lastly, for an example of: 1) reflection 2) faith 3) passionate concentration, I offer you this photo, taken only yesterday, of my cat Zipper reclining next to his favorite reclining buddha. (Because you know what Kierkegaard really loved? CUTE KITTY PHOTOS.)

Have a rich and gorgeous and contemplative day, everyone…


via Elizabeth Gilbert’s Facebook Wall