Kierkegaard’s View of Self-Actualization
Word Count: 705
In this paper, I will explain Kierkegaard’s beliefs and understanding of self-actualization.
Kierkegaard regarded philosophy as a personal reflection on one’s lived experience. He believed that the crowd was detrimental to the individual and his identity. In order for a person to properly be able to reflect and develop his life experience, he had to get away from the crowd and focus on himself. The notion that a person finds out the truth within him is called self-actualization, using Kierkegaard’s terms. A person has to find meaning for himself within his own life, as the truth is meant to give purpose and meaning to that individual. Universal reason and truth is not enough for full self-actualization, as only the ethical is the universal. The faith in God and commitment to the religious part of one’s life allows for transformation to the final stage of self-actualization.
Self-actualization is the notion by Kierkegaard where the goal is the affirmation of the individual as an individual, with the actual making of the true self within. A person strives for self-actualization in order to develop a true relationship with God as having that relationship is the representation of the deepest level of commitment to the truth one can discover within himself. There are three progressive states that a person must proceed through before the self can become realized. The focus is that the stages represent a constant growth throughout and an ability to understand and realize who the person is as himself. The first stage of self-actualization is the esthetic stage. This stage is centered on the person being submerged in the sense experience. All actions done by the individual are based without any moral standard or religious faith; instead, the person behaves out of desire and emotion without concern for accountability. This stage is very comparable to other philosophers as the part of the person that...