Continuing discussion.

EPS Blog

This is the blog area for the Evangelical Philosophical Society and its journal, Philosophia Christi.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

2008 EPS Papers (Reed)

David A. Reed

Voices Crying in the Wilderness: The Calls to Faith in Kierkegaard and Nietzsche

Abstract: The philosophies of Kierkegaard and Nietzsche were watershed moments in the history of Western thought that share intriguing characteristics. Both saw the intellectual and moral landscape of European society to be a wilderness of despair and suffering. Because Kierkegaard saw Christiandom as a non-Christian culture afflicted by finitude, he prophetically called his contemporaries to a genuine faith in God. Nietzsche understood the wilderness to be caused by the intellectual and moral crisis resulting from the 'death of God' and the rise of nihilism. Nietzsche's solution to the crisis was to call his and future generations to an uncompromising faith in human nature.

This paper will analyze and critically evaluate the elements of the conflicting and competing faiths to which Kierkegaard and Nietzsche called their readers, which were based on radically differing theistic and anthropological judgments. Based on the Kierkegaard's three-fold conception of aesthetic, ethical, and religious faith, I will argue that his call to radical faith (which is based on his existential philosophy of human nature) triumphs over Nietzsche's. My critique of Nietsche will be based largely on inherently weak and immature faith in human nature.

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