Sunday, January 28, 2007

Faith is a rope, tied between man and God - a rope over an abyss

On occasion I've wondered about the connection between Kierkegaard and Nietzsche. The SEP informs:
Kierkegaard's social realism, his deep psychological and philosophical analyses of contemporary problems, and his concern to address "the present age" were taken up by fellow Scandinavians Henrik Ibsen and August Strindberg. Ibsen and Strindberg, together with Friedrich Nietzsche, became central icons of the modernism movement in Berlin in the 1890s. The Danish literary critic Georg Brandes was instrumental in conjoining these intellectual figures: he had given the first university lectures on Kierkegaard and on Nietzsche; he had promoted Kierkegaard's work to Nietzsche and to Strindberg; and he had put Strindberg in correspondence with Nietzsche.
Which leads me to wonder whether this striking image (from Nietzsche's Thus Spoke Zarathustra):
Man is a rope, tied between beast and overman --- a rope over an abyss.
...has anything to do with this one (from Kierkegaardian pseudonym Anti-Climacus' The Sickness Unto Death):
As a sinner man is separated from God by a yawning qualitative abyss.
That would be a disappointing adaptation. Compared to the original, Zarathustra's abyss is like a puddle in a gutter or a crack in the pavement. Silly Nietzsche.


John said...

Hi, Im from Melbourne in the land of Oz--somewhere in the middle of the rainbow.

What a dismal post!

Please check out these related essays on Real God and Faith.


Toby said...

Is the implication that Christianity lacks Real God and Faith?