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Kierkegaards stages of life

Posted: Fri Mar 31, 2017 6:59 pm
by jtightlips21
The stages of life theorized are the Aesthetic, Ethical and Religious. Basically the Aesthetic is all about pleasure, the Ethical about following Social Rules and the Religious all about Mystical Union. I was wondering if the two stages are necessary. This reminds me of the fear we often have of maturity, and the nostalgia of youth, where we prefer the Aesthetic, but bound to the Ethical. The Aesthetic has the appearance of being cooler, interesting and self affirming, while the Ethical appears to be more mature, righteous, and Selfless. The Ethical however is also judgmental, boring and self denying, while the Aesthetic is often times amoral and subrational.

I think the tough matter is whether it is necessary to have to go through the ethical stage and surrender our aesthetic interests. We often see this as the process of maturity to identify with the ethical tendencies of duty over happiness, but at the same time long for the days of happiness over duty. This is a kind of paradoxical frustration where we have a love/hate relationship with both sides, in a kind of Either/Or system.