speculation on the separation

by Andrea Elizabeth

“As spirit, qualified solely as spirit, renounces this world, feels that the world not only is not its home but is not even its stage, and withdraws into the higher realms, it leaves the worldly behind as the playground for the power with which it has always been in conflict and to which it now yields ground. Then as spirit disengages itself from the earth, the sensuous shows itself in all its power. It has not objection to the change; indeed, it perceives the advantage in being separated and is happy that the Church does not induce them to remain together but cuts in two the band that binds them.” (p. 89 of Either/Or by Søren Kierkegaard)

He explains that in pre-Christian Greek culture the idea of a seducer in general did not exist. “Its love was therefore psychical, not sensuous, and it is this that instills the modesty that rests over all Greek love.” The gods loved women in particular, even if there were more than one, albeit in succession. Don Juan loves femininity in general. If this is true, I wonder if there was any such thing as a serial killer back then.

And why does he say the spirit disengages itself when Pentecost was when the spirit engaged Himself? Maybe there was a different dispensation of spirit before that, and the Church took a more exclusive portion. The Ascension made it happen in heaven and on earth simultaneously, but by raising particulars of the earthbound to heaven to accomplish it? A heavenly earthly existence is not sensuous but spiritual, even though the senses are involved, but in subjection.

Or maybe it could be true that when Christ united mankind in his incarnation, then there became man in general instead of man solely in particular? Not that people lost their individuality, but they lost their isolation? I wonder if psychological transference wasn’t possible back then either, where people “take things out” on surrogate people rather than the particular ones. To do it to one is to do it to all now. I’m probably taking his meaning too far.