Three Discourses on Imagined Occasions
Søren Kierkegaard published Eighteen Upbuilding Discourses between the years 1843 and 1844 as well as a number of pseudonymous books. His category from Either/Or is to choose and his category from his discourses is the ""single individual"". He has let the reader know that he or she should pay attention to the prefaces in his works and has one in this book which speaks about ""meaning"" and the ""appropriation"" of meaning and has repeatedly said that he didn't have the ""authority to preach or to teach."" Here, in his Preface, he wrote: ""This little book, which might be called a book of occasional addresses, although it has neither the occasion which creates the speaker and gives him authority, nor the occasion that creates the hearer and makes him a learner, is lacking in the legitimation of a call, and is thus in its shortcomings without excuse. It is without assistance from external circumstances, and thus quite helpless in its elaboration.""He wrote of an apostle who didn't have the easiest time being a Christian. ""Now Paul! Did he live in the favor of the mighty so that it could commend his teaching? No, he was a prisoner! Did the wise hail his teaching so that their reputation could guarantee its truth? No, to them it was foolishness. Was his teaching capable of quickly supplying the individual with a supranatural power, did it offer itself for sale to people through legerdemain? No, it had to be acquired slowly, appropriated in the ordeal that began with the renunciation of everything."" Would Paul have become a Christian if he knew what was in store for him? Each single individual has a future and there comes a time when a decision is made that can have long-lasting effects. Paul wrote about his own experiences in his epistles and Kierkegaard thought this was a legitimate way to preach about Christianity. But he stressed indirect communication. The law of delicacy by which an author is permitted to use what he has himself experienced is that he never says the truth but keeps the truth for himself and only lets it emerge in different ways. Søren Kierkegaard, Journals and Papers IV A 161In these final three discourses of his first authorship he chooses to write about Confession before God about guilt, sin, forgiveness, marriage and death and the answers that seem to come or don't seem to come to the inquiring individual.