The Concept Of The Absurd: Its Importance For The Philosophico-Religious Studies Essay Examples

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Absurd, Concept, Religion, Belief, Faith, Absurdity, Logic, Human

Pages: 6

Words: 1650

Published: 2021/02/10

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NameProfessor10 April 2015 The word count: 2037

The notion of absurd has been used by writers, linguists, and psychologists for several epochs. There is also the hypothesis of its older forms. This concept is trying to explore every generation, but no generation can come to an agreement. The absurd is controversial since the emergence of writing and grammar. Perhaps the absurd, as a concept, has originated with the emergence of the concept of "order" and "logic". The notion absurd had an important impact has on the human perception; but it had both positive and negative qualities. This paper is an attempt to define all aspects of one of the most controversial concepts in the history of humankind.
The notion of absurdity had a threefold significance since antiquity. Firstly, as an aesthetic category that expressed negative properties around the world. Secondly, the word was the concept of logical absurdity as a denial of the central component of rationality - logic (i.e. perversion and/or disappearance of the meaning), and thirdly - metaphysical absurdity (i.e. going beyond the mind itself). However, the attention was paid to various sides in this category in every cultural and historical epoch. The absurd was treated as mathematical (appearance in mathematics of the concept of "absurd numbers" within the meaning of 'negative numbers') and logical category in the Middle Ages. Medieval scholastics used the method of reduction to absurdity, designating it as a ‘reductio ad absurdum’. It was treated as an aesthetic category in the Baroque period. Anything that does not fit into the aesthetic notions of harmony was declared not only as cacophonous, and therefore absurd, moreover, it was associated with the infernal world due to distortion of the divine pattern at that time. Consequently, the concept of the absurd, having in these eras demonological value was opposed to the divine canon. In this same sense of negative similarity, divine canon or negative similarity of the absolute sample appears as the absurd in the romantic era. Goethe’s concept of the absurd became one of the fundamental concepts.


The question of what the absurd is, when it occurs, and how it is shown in works of art and literature requires a clearer definition of the concept, which remains the most vague and uncertain in the literary discourse to this day today. According to European dictionaries, the concept is derived from the Latin words contamination ‘absonus’, i.e. 'cacophonous', and ‘surdus’, i.e. 'deaf'. Friedrich Kluge, the professor of English and German Philology, believes that this concept "can be traced back to the general concept of onomatopoeic words ‘susurrus’, i.e. 'whistling'. " The Historical and etymological dictionary of modern English defines that the root of the word is ‘suer’, i.e. 'whispering'. Many scientists believe that a derivative of this root word ‘susurrus’ scratches further with a word ‘surdus’.
The concept of the absurd for the early Greek philosophers meant something undesirable, associated with the opposite of the cosmos and harmony; in fact, the concept of absurdity was equivalent to the concept of Chaos. Thus, the absurd acted as an aesthetic category, which expressed the negative features of the world and the opposite aesthetic categories such as the beautiful and the sublime, the basis of which was the subject of a positive human value. In addition, the concept of the absurd meant a logical dead end for the Greeks: that is the place where the argument leads to the obvious contradiction reasoning or, moreover, to the obvious absurdity and therefore requires a different way of thinking. Thus, the absurd meant a denial of the central component of rationality - logic. The concept of logical absurdity fixed the ancient Greeks’ mismatch situation in behavior and speech. Further, it has moved to mathematical logic and came to signify a discrepancy of any action (or arguments) to their results. One of the favorite tricks of the absurd logic operation is an opportunity to bring to the absurdity of detecting contradictions between the guideline and its conclusions. This technique has been fundamental in the philosophy of skeptics, who had put a doubt (including doubts about the reliability of the truth) as a principle of thinking.


In philosophy, literature and religious studies, the epithet "absurd" is sometimes used to describe the relationship of a man to the world. Albert Camus defines absurd as "impossible". Absurd is interpreted as something irrational, devoid of any meaning and distinct connection with reality. In the philosophy of existentialism, the absurd concept means that one cannot find a rational explanation. What makes no sense is usually ignored and considered as frivolous thing. If any event has no logical explanation, it is either denied or ignored. The human mind is subject to the laws of metaphysics that has a certain internal order. The engine of human mind is logic. When the engine is working properly, a person everything is clear and it has no problems with perception. One has only a second to break the usual way of thinking, and a man realizes immediately that something is wrong. To my mind, the absurd is a kind of interference in the perception, the attack on the logic and all rational. People got used to see just what makes sense and often only that has a special meaning for them. The absurd is a concept that accommodates everything that defies understanding; it violates the order. If there is an order, it means there is a chaos, I think, this is natural. Maybe it is strange, but absurdity is an integral part of a higher order of things. To my way of thinking, the absurd allows a person to determine any violation of the order, because it works as a fuse if something in the usual scheme of action phenomena is not as necessary.
The absurdists writers had used absurdity in their works not in order to attract the reader's attention but to touch their perception. The absurdist and their theater tried to show humankind that it all went wrong and that there was a need to change the strategy of humankind’s life. In my opinion, the absurd as the notion is not bad a priori, it merely indicates the violation of the order.


In the religious and philosophical concepts of Kierkegaard, a problem of the absurd is the dominant; it represents a central point of reflection of the Danish author. Not only the development of the fundamental theory of the three stages of existence is related not only to the consideration of the Absurdism, but also the constitution of a number of basic categories such as existence, freedom, faith, truth, subjectivity, transcendence and others. Perseverance selection and emphasis of this problem in the work of the Danish thinker is due primarily Kierkegaard's main trend that moves simultaneously in two directions. On the one hand, there is a need for clear thinking and clear delineation of spheres of knowledge and the realm of faith. On the other hand, there is a claim for unconditional; the urgent need to establish a deep inner directedness existential individual to the Eternal. In this case, Kierkegaard considers the essential not only to initiate these messages to the Eternal but also to reveal initially of the absolute absurd correlation with human transcendence that can be clearly found in Christianity. The communicative and existential act, which establishes the Eternity, acts as the absurd, which is not amenable to rational understanding. Kierkegaard identifies on this basis one important task in life for a true believer, i.e. the implementation of the absurd movement of faith as a response to God's absurd call.
As a result, the Absurdism of Kierkegaard does not determine only the unique essence of Christianity but also acts as a constant reminder that there is such a correlation and content in the field of religion. It does not suggest the possibility of intellectual and rational consciousness, and, therefore, does not require a scientific and theoretical knowledge and faith. These correlations can be identified as contradictory, the Absurdism in the highest degree, if considered from a purely logical point of view; but they fix a certain reality and the reality of meta-logic that requires no understanding and explanation, and the confidence of the existing individual.
In my opinion, these works of the philosopher state that faith is the absurd because it has no rational or scientific explanation. I agree with Kierkegaard’s position because he states that the faith is so important to humans precisely because it is the absurd. In addition, if it had a logical explanation, it would eventually lose its importance. I believe that the absurd is the basis for the emergence of faith in Christianity in this case.


Examining the absurd as a literary and world notion, I can draw the following conclusions: the main reason for the existence of the absurd can achieve greater understanding of their place in the world, in the understanding of religion and faith if they are understood correctly. The Absurd is not actually a bad thing, which leads to death or leads to a deadlock. It exists as an integral part of human existence, a reminder of the importance of the order. The absurd is trying to turn to face the reality of man, set them free from illusions. Most scholars believe that faith in God is the absurd. They are trying to explore faith and find in it an error to deny it. In fact, they are trying to bring logic into nonsense, because they believe the faith is the absurd in nature.

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