Everyone experiences moments of deep existential anxiety, but few of us know how to process and heal from it. Søren Kierkegaard gave us insight into the depths of this feeling and how we can overcome it. So how does one cope using existential anxiety?
Understanding Kierkegaard’s Existential Anxiety
Kierkegaard’s existential anxiety is often attributed to his personal life, as well as his philosophical works. It is seen as a fear of the unknown, a dread of the limitations of being human, and a sense of helplessness in the face of an incomprehensible universe. This mental health condition can cause feelings of anxiety, depression, and a sense of hopelessness. Those experiencing existential anxiety may feel overwhelmed by uncertainty and the lack of absolute truth and meaning in life. As a result, they may be unable to cope with the complexities of life and their own finite existence. It is important to understand this mental health condition and practice self-care in order to effectively manage such feelings of fear and helplessness.
This fear can be seen most prominently in his works such as Fear and Trembling and The Sickness Unto Death, where he explores concepts like faith, despair, and choice – all which can lead to a heightened sense of existential anxiety for some people Thereafter, the healing of existential anxiety can be seen as the primary objective of Kierkegaard’s works. He actively sought to heal and comfort those who fear and tremble, by giving them an outlet for their despair and encouraging them to make the choices that will give their lives meaning and purpose. In this way, his works serve as a beacon of hope for everyone struggling with existential anxiety.
Healing and Coping Strategies for Existential Anxiety
In order to cope with existential anxiety, it is important to first recognize the underlying cause of our feelings and understand how we can best address them. For example, Danish philosopher Soren Kierkegaard first recognized the concept of existential anxiety and proposed the idea of a ‘leap of faith’. He argued that living authentically in the face of anxiety requires embracing uncertainty, which can be difficult to do in our comfort-seeking society. By cultivating an understanding of Kierkegaard’s work, we can learn how to confront existential angst in a meaningful way.
Once we have identified the source of our anxiety, we can turn to healing and coping strategies such as mindfulness, meditation, journaling and other therapeutic activities to help us manage our emotions and create a sense of calm Thus, it is important to identify the source of our anxiety if we wish to heal and create a sense of calm in our lives. Various coping strategies, such as mindfulness, meditation, and journaling, can be effective in helping us to manage our emotions and heal from our anxieties.
Kierkegaard brought us on a journey through the depths of existential anxiety, but he also gave us a way to heal from it. By understanding that we are more than our thoughts, by striving to live authentically and by using our passions to guide us, we can find peace amidst the chaos. While existential anxiety can be terrifying and overwhelming, it doesn’t have to consume us. We are capable of recognizing and confronting it in a healthy way and we have the power to rise above it.