Augustine's Confessions Research Paper

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Throughout Augustine’s Confessions, he addresses the issue of the human condition through a retelling of his life. He strays from Manichaeism, the view of Christianity that emphasized the duality of good and evil, and embraced Neo-Platonism, that placed God at the origin of all things and maintained evil as the corruption of good. Through this new philosophy, Augustine is able to define man in their current situation, how they act in the world, and their limitations and the nature of those limitations. His work revolved around describing the above feature of the human condition in terms of a sensible and intelligible world, original sin and free will, and unity with God. Ultimately the ideas presented by Augustine are truly well composed and …show more content…

He states that all humans were created by an all-good, all-powerful, and all-knowing God. God, continuing with Neo-Platonism themes, is the origin from which all things come from. This notion of God brings forth the two worlds that Augustine identifies as the intelligible world and the sensible world. The intelligible world is atemporal and closer to God, it is related to Plato’s world of Becoming, which is ideal and free of all transitory objects. The sensible world is the one that humans find themselves in. It is a small part of the larger world and is based in the physical and temporal experiences of everyday life. Humans exist in this sensible world, endowed with free will and to be inherently good by God. Augustine asserts that humans are constantly on a quest to find unity with God but are unfortunately too absorbed in the sensible world. This is due to the original sin of Adam and Eve that Augustine feels is given to all humans as we are all from Adam’s loins. With original sin and free will instilled in each human, Augustine determines that humans place their morals in transitory particulars in the sensible world as more important than devoting of God. Some examples of this would be someone choosing to pursue riches while ignoring God, as they put money, which will change with time whether it be in amount or loss of it all in death, before the love of …show more content…

Rational humans, equipped with faith, can assess that they are partly embodied in the sensible world while still connected to the ideal intelligible world. It is with this that we can work toward enjoying the sensible world while remaining unattached as to transcend to the intelligible world and closer to unity with God. Humankinds other choice is to use free will to chase temporary physical goods in the sensible world and live a life of anxiety and suffering as you attempt to find the unity in the form of love in the particulars, that can only be found with God. Humans also have limitations in what they can do in the form of their rational minds. Although their rational mind can help them realize that they are still connected to the intelligible world, this can only be seen with faith in God. Without faith, the rational mind will see the sensible world as the ultimate moral world and never experience the love of

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