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The Mysticism of Saint Augustine: Re-Reading the Confessions

Augustine's imaginative and prescient at Ostia is without doubt one of the such a lot influential bills of mystical adventure within the Western culture, and an issue of continual curiosity to Christians, philosophers and historians.
This ebook explores Augustine's account of his event as set down within the Confessions and considers his mysticism relating to his classical Platonist philosophy. John Peter Kenney argues that whereas the Christian contemplative mysticism created via Augustine is in lots of methods based on Platonic concept, Platonism finally fails Augustine in that it can't preserve the truths that it anticipates. The Confessions supply a reaction to this deadlock by means of producing severe rules in medieval and glossy spiritual notion: first of all, the notion of contemplation as a basically epistemic occasion, not like classical Platonism; secondly, the guiding principle that salvation is basically designated from enlightenment.

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Bonner, G. (1986 [1963]) St Augustine of Hippo: existence and Controversies, Norwich: Canterbury Press. Bonner, G. , Dodaro, R. and Lawless, G. (2000) Augustine and his Critics: Essays in Honour of Gerald Bonner, London; ny: Routledge. Bourke, V. J. (1945) Augustine’s Quest of knowledge, Milwaukee, WI: The Bruce Publishing Co. Bourke, V. J. (1953) The Confessions of St. Augustine, big apple: Fathers of the Church. Bourke, V. J. (1964) Augustine’s View of fact, Villanova, PA: Villanova college Press. Boyer, C.

But previous theological analyses had the advantage of appraising the texts of the Confessions from the vantage element of a reside non secular culture, and hence had the good thing about taking heavily what Augustine himself really believed at the foundation of his reports. because the trajectory simply explored exhibits, the hot venture of getting better the mysticism of the Confessions calls for more and more strenuous efforts to take away the theological that means of those texts within the curiosity of seven INTRODUCTION convalescing their experiential content material.

It's the hole the religious self needs to go with a view to in attaining its everlasting history and repair its actual nature. it really is, furthermore, a neuralgic element, resonant of classical Hellenic non secular nervousness and piety. it's also the instant whilst the soul achieves transcendence of the decrease international and dares to consort with the gods. For this second of self-restoration is what the god, mind, gives you – now not salvation provided from with no. In Plotinus, it's not a brand new self that's chanced on, yet an old one.

By myself with one another, we talked very in detail. “Forgetting the earlier and achieving ahead to what lies forward” (Phil. 3:13), we have been looking jointly within the presence of fact that's you your self. We requested what caliber of existence the everlasting lifetime of the saints can have, a lifestyles which “neither eye has noticeable nor ear heard, nor has it entered into the guts of guy” (1 Cor. 2:9). yet with the mouth of the center vast open, we drank within the waters flowing out of your spring on excessive, “the spring of existence” (Ps. 35:10) that is with you.

34 A lengthy lifestyles STRETCHED OUT the single is hence a “long lifestyles stretched out” and we stay hooked up to it and in its presence. Our very life offers witness to this ontological relation. And there are only a few degrees of truth that separate the contemplative soul from the nice. “Since the soul is so honorable and divine something, ascertain already for you to reach God as a consequence of its being of this type, and with this as your intent ascend to him: in all sure bet you won't glance a ways; and the levels among aren't many” (V.

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