Quiz on Søren Kierkegaard and Existential Anxiety

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11 Questions

What did Søren Kierkegaard prioritize focusing on, as mentioned in the text?

What am I to do

Which concept did Kierkegaard contribute that is described as a response to the uncertainty and freedom of existence?


What did Kierkegaard recommend pursuing based on subjective truth?


How did Kierkegaard believe attempts to avoid anxiety could lead?


What kind of existence are humans thrust into?

Disquieting, confusing, and uncertain

What shaped Kierkegaard's perspective on life's uncertainty?

Tragic childhood experiences

What does the text suggest about anxiety and choices in modern life?

An abundance of choices can lead to increased anxiety.

How does Kierkegaard suggest dealing with anxiety?

By embracing anxiety and taking personal leaps of faith.

How does the text describe the relationship between anxiety and the human condition?

Anxiety is universal and fundamental, closely connected to the human condition.

What is suggested in the text about managing anxiety in the face of uncertainties?

Managing anxiety requires taking action, making decisions, and moving forward despite uncertainty.

How do philosophers like Kierkegaard propose living meaningfully according to the text?

By embracing anxiety and taking personal leaps of faith.

Study Notes

  • Søren Kierkegaard (born 1813, Denmark) was a theologian and philosopher who explored existential ideas, considered the father of Existentialism
  • Early exposure to philosophical thinking from his father
  • Studied philosophy and theology at University of Copenhagen, found historical works incongruent with real life
  • Believed in focusing on "what am I to do" instead of what to know
  • Tragic childhood with five siblings passing away young, shaping his perspective on life's uncertainty
  • Began writing prolifically in mid-twenties, producing many books under various pseudonyms and his own name
  • Notable contribution was the concept of anxiety as a response to the uncertainty and freedom of existence
  • Anxiety is the feeling of freedom and responsibility within the unknown and uncertainty of existence
  • Anxiety can be paralyzing but also necessary for living a fulfilled life and developing a unique self
  • To best use anxiety, Kierkegaard suggested pursuing passions based on subjective truth
  • Attempts to avoid anxiety through conformity, distractions, and escapism can lead to despair instead.- Anxiety is a pervasive aspect of human consciousness, deeply embedded in our experiences of feeling and thinking.
  • Humans may be aptly named Homo anxietatem, or anxious man, given the natural response to the disquieting, confusing, and uncertain existence we are thrust into.
  • Modern life presents us with an abundance of choices, further fueling our anxiety as we fret over potential outcomes and feel responsible for the inevitable imperfections.
  • It's essential to learn to live with and navigate anxiety, as suggested by philosopher Søren Kierkegaard, and to continue moving forward into the unknown by taking personal leaps of faith.
  • Anxiety is a universal and fundamental experience, deeply intertwined with the human condition.
  • The more choices and complexities we encounter in life, the more reasons we have to feel anxious and responsible for our decisions and their outcomes.
  • Learning to live with and manage anxiety involves taking action, making decisions, and continuing to move forward despite uncertainty and discomfort.
  • Philosophers like Kierkegaard suggest that embracing anxiety and taking personal leaps of faith can help us live meaningfully and fulfill our deepest beliefs and values.

Test your knowledge on the life, philosophy, and key concepts of Søren Kierkegaard, the influential Danish theologian and philosopher known for his exploration of existential ideas, particularly the concept of anxiety. Dive into his background, beliefs, and contributions to existentialism.

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