St. Augustine: A Man of Great Genius Essay

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Throughout the ages, there have been countless influences on not only social and political life, but on religious character and prevalence as well. Aurelius Augustine, who would eventually rise to the position of bishop in the early Catholic Church, was one of the most interesting characters that would surely leave his mark on the Roman Empire, especially in the few decades before the western part of the empire was to be taken over by Germanic tribes from the North. Perhaps, his most influential characteristic that history still records today, was his striking tenacity to preserve the Christian religion as it was ‘supposed’ to be and to spread that influence to all who walked the earth. This, of course, is only a small fraction of the…show more content…
This work, one of his greatest, along with De doctrina Christiana (AD 426) and De civitate Dei (AD 426), would spell out his intentions for the Catholic faith in the 5th Century and how it should be practiced. In The Confessions, as it is translated from the Latin, he attributes his whole journey toward the Christian faith to a struggle through many philosophies and teachings, which he would take up and then constantly reject. This would seem to be the pattern of Augustine as he practiced, for some time, everything from Manichaeism to Neoplatonism. He could not seem to grasp the fullness of their teachings and eventually and always found a fault that would not allow him for continuation of the particular faith. But, it would be his boyish ways which would set him upon this path in the first place. Firstly, one must observe and discuss Augustine’s formative years, especially in the ever- changing empire of Rome, with its countless influences from near and far, especially dealing with the occult and religion. Philip Woollcott, Jr. describes Augustine, in his younger days, as somewhat “stormy”, as he labels him with a certain “drive toward licentiousness and a growing sense of religious identity” all at the same time (1966, 274). It was this Augustine who was confused, and such a bewildered being that would
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