December 31

“Once again a year has passed, heavenly Father! We thank you that it was added to the time of grace and that we are not terrified by its also being added to the time of accounting, because we trust in your mercy. The new year faces us with its requirements, and even though we enter it downcast and troubled because we cannot and do not wish to hide from ourselves the thought of the lust of the eye that infatuated, the sweetness of revenge that seduced, the anger that made us unrelenting, the cold heart that fled far from you, we nevertheless do not go into the new year entirely empty-handed, since we shall indeed also take along with us recollections of the fearful doubts that were set at rest, of the lurking concerns that were soothed, of the downcast disposition that was raised up, of the cheerful hope that was not humiliated. Yes, when in mournful moments we want to strengthen and encourage our minds by contemplating those great men, your chosen instruments, who in severe spiritual trials and anxieties of heart kept their minds free, their courage uncrushed, and heaven open, we too, wish to add our witness to theirs in the assurance that even if our courage compared with theirs is only discouragement, our power powerlessnesss, you, however, are still the same, the same might God who tests spirits in conflict, the same Father without whose will not one sparrow falls to the ground. Amen.”
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~Source: Eighteen Upbuilding Discourses: “The Expectancy of Faith, New Year’s Day” (1843)
Author: Søren Kierkegaard

December 30

“What sheer vanity the earthly and temporal is… Everything, all that I see, is vanity and vicissitude as long as it exists, and finally it is the prey of corruption. Therefore, when the moon rises in its radiance, I will together with that devout man* say to the star, ‘I do not care for you: after all, you are now eclipsed’; and when the sun rises in all its splendor and darkens the moon, I will say to the moon, ‘I do not care for you: after all, you are now eclipsed’; and wwhen the sun goes down, I will say, ‘I thought as much, because all is vanity.’ When I see the brook running along so briskly, I will say: Just keep on running; you will never fill the sea. To the wind I will say, yes, even it it tears trees up by the roots, I will say to it: Just keep on blowing; there is no meaning or thought in you, you symbol of inconstancy. Even if the loveliness of the field, which charmingly captivates the eye, and even if the melodiousness of the birds’ singing, which deliciously falls upon the ear, and even if the peacefulness of the forest, which invitingly refreshes the heart — even if they were to use all their persuasiveness, I will still not allow myself to be persuaded, will not allow myself to be beguiled; I will still call to mind that all of it is deception. Even though through thousands of years the stars remained so fixed and without changing their positions in the sky, I will still not allow myself to be deceived by this reliability; I will call to mind that they at some time will fall down.”
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~Source: Christian Discourses: “Discourses at the Communion on Fridays; I. Luke 22:15” (1848)
Author: Søren Kierkegaard

*See Ecclesiastes 12:2,8

December 29

“Are you now living in such a way that you are aware as a single individual, that in every relationship in which you relate yourself outwardly you are aware that you are also relating yourself to yourself as a single individual, that even in the relationships we human beings so beautifully call the most intimate you recollect that you have an even more intimate relationship, the relationship in which you as a single individual relate yourself to yourself before God?”
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~Source: Upbuilding Discourses in Various Spirits: “Purity of Heart Is to Will One Thing” (1847)
Author: Søren Kierkegaard

December 28

“The ethical expression for what Abraham did is that he meant to murder Isaac; the religious expression is that he meant to sacrifice Isaac — but precisely in this contradiction is the anxiety that can make a person sleepless, and yet without this anxiety Abraham is not who he is.”

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~Source: Fear and Trembling (1843)
Author: Søren Kierkegaard using the pseudonym Johannes de Silentio

December 27

“In ‘Christendom’ we are all Christians — therefore the relationship of opposition drops out. In this meaningless sense they have got all men made into Christians, and got everything Christian — and then (under the name of Christianity) we live a life of paganism. They have not ventured defiantly, openly, to revolt against Christianity; no, hypocritically and knavishly they have done away with it by falsifying the definition of what it is to be a Christian. It is of this I say that it is: (1) a criminal case, (2) that it is playing Christianity, (3) taking God for a fool.”
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~Source: The Moment (1855)
Author: Søren Kierkegaard

December 26

“I know all this, I know too that the highest conceivable enjoyment lies in being loved; to be loved is higher than anything else in the world. To poetize oneself into a young girl is art, to poetize oneself out of her is a masterpiece. Still, the latter depends essentially upon the first.”
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~Source: Either/Or: A Fragment Of Life (1843)
Author: Soren Kierkegaard using the pseudonym Victor Eremita

December 25

“Where should we go if not to you, Lord Jesus Christ! Where should the one who is suffering find sympathy if not with you, and where the penitent, alas, if not with you, Lord Jesus Christ!”
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~Source: Three Discourses at the Communion on Fridays (1849)
Author: Søren Kierkegaard

December 24

“Lord Jesus Christ, you who knew your fate beforehand and yet did not draw back, you who let yourself be born in poverty and lowliness and then, a sufferer, in poverty and lowliness carried the sin of the world until you, hated, forsaken, mocked, spat upon, finally even forsarken by God, bowed your head in that degrading death — but you lifted it again, you eternal victor, you who did not conquer your enemies in life but in death even conquered death! Forever victorious, you lifted your head again, you ascended one! Would that we might follow you!”
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~Source: For Self-Examination: “Christ is the Way” (1851)
Author: Søren Kierkegaard

December 23

“Lord Jesus Christ, whether we are far away or nearby, far away from you in the confused human throng, in worldly busyness, in earthly cares, in temporal joy, in purely human loftiness, or far away from all this in solitude, in forsakenness, in unappreciation, in lowliness — and closer to you: draw us, draw us wholly to yourself.”
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~Source: Practice in Christianity (1850)
Author: Søren Kierkegaard using the pseudonym Anti-Climacus

December 22

“For to be a teacher does not mean simply to affirm that such a thing is so, or to deliver a lecture, etc. No, to be a teacher in the right sense is to be a learner. Instruction begins when you, the teacher, learn from the learner, put yourself in his place so that you may understand what he understands and in the way he understands it, in case you have not understood it before. Or if you have understood it before, you allow him to subject you to an examination so that he may be sure you know your part. This is the introduction. Then the beginning can be made in another sense…”
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~Source: The Point of View for My Work as an Author (1848)
Author: Søren Kierkegaard

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