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Philosophy CPT: St. Augustine

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Carine Lee

on 30 January 2014

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Transcript of Philosophy CPT: St. Augustine

Philosophy CPT: St. Augustine
By: Carine Lee

knowledge would be impossible if God did not allow mind to comprehend ideas

the theory of illumination

ideas were timeless, unchanging, and existed only within the mind, suggesting that he was more of a rationalist than an empiricist
3 characteristics of human nature:
1. Humans have free will
2. Humans are moved by “loves” (desires) which are usually sinful
3. All humans ultimately desire peace
a virtue ethicist as Christianity emphasized virtues such as humility and kindness

idea of the inferiority of bodily pleasures implemented into Christianity

happiness not achieved through gaining wisdom but through faith in God and Jesus
order could not be maintained through an organized city-state – only the church held a spiritual authority that could sanction the government

function of the government to keep order in a world that is inherently evil
Politics (cont'd)
beauty was an attribute of God

beauty consists of unity and order, which emerge from complexity

ex. the beauty of this statue lies within it's complex detail, which results in a single well-structured unit
354–430: lived during decline of Roman empire

At an early age, Augustine stole pears from a neighbour's tree; this incident troubled him greatly

was the bishop of Hippo for 35 years
1st century A.D.:
The codex (1st form of the modern book) appears in the Roman Empire

stage of
Model Revolution
in Kuhn's Cycle of Science – codex replaces the formerly used scrolls and wax tablets, creating a new paradigm to replace the old one
Metaphysical theory consisted of a combination of Classical and Hebraic dualism – the idea that reality consists of 2 different kinds of properties

Inherited a contempt for the illusions of desire from Plato
Philosophical Theories

theory of illumination:
knowledge is possible because God “illumines” the mind and allows it to grasp and understand ideas

the mind is compared to an eye - only able to see when light (God) allows for sight
Historical Events of the Roman Empire
27 BC:
The Roman state is established as the Roman Empire
6 BC – 4 BC:
Birth of Jesus of Nazareth
30 AD:
Start of Christian church
306 – 337 AD:
Constantine ends persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire
Famous Quotes
“The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.”

“Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe.”
Discussion Question:
If St. Augustine hadn't been so influenced by Plato, how would the Christian faith be different today?
Full transcript