The Confessions St. Augustine (354-430 CE) Prepared by: Dr. Kay Picart Assistant Professor of English & Humanities
Biography/Historical Backdrop l Born in Thagaste l Trained as a rhetorician l product of a religiously mixed marriage l Monnica (Catholic) and Patricius (agnostic) l initially a hedonist
Augustine’s parents deliver him to the schoolmaster
Additional Sites l Augustine of Hippo Augustine of Hippo l Augustine(Intern et Encyclopedia of Philosophy) Augustine(Intern et Encyclopedia of Philosophy) l Saint Augustine Saint Augustine
Biography/Historical Backdrop l Lived with an unnamed woman, had a son, “Adeodatus” (“gift of Baal”) l attracted to Manicheism-- founded by Mani (Babylonian; claimed to be the Holy Spirit; crucified as a heretic)
The Problem of Evil l How can one reconcile the presence of a Christian God who is: Omnipotent (all powerful) Omniscient (all knowing) Omnibenevolent (all caring) with Evil in the world?
The Problem of Evil l Perhaps He is not omnipotent even if he were omniscient and omnibenevolent l Mani’s dualism: the principles of light & darkness l asceticism: the barest necessities
Augustine’s Conversion l Foreshadowing: l Augustine’s primary sins:
Guide Questions for Dante’s Inferno (Jan. 31, NOT Jan. 29): l Do you see any similarities/differences b/w Dante’s vision of hell and the movie, Seven? l Do you see any similarities between Dante and Augustine (hint: they are both confessions of sins in some senses)?