St Augustine Confessions Analysis

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In his Confessions, St. Augustine presented his life from his adolescence through his adulthood and conversion to Christianity. One of the most prominent themes throughout his narrative was the reaction of weeping in a situation of separation. Whether it was Monica grieving when her son left for Rome or Augustine lamenting the distance between himself and God, these scenes of weeping proved incredibly crucial to the presentation of his life story, acting as frames for specific points in his life. Through his placement and description of four specific scenes of weeping, Augustine created a pattern of mirrored events that marked the distinction between his life prior to and after his conversion. One of the first pressing occasions of a separation was the instance of Monica weeping when she discovered that Augustine had left Christianity behind to be a Manichee. He described that she “wept for [him] before [God] more than mothers weep when lamenting their dead children,” as she was overwhelmed with sorrow that her son was separating himself from God (Conf. 3.19). Even though Augustine himself could not see that he was straying from salvation, Monica “perceived the death which held [him]” and turned to God for guidance (Conf. 3.19). Through her prayers, “she was granted a dream” from God in which a man asked her why she “was downcast and daily in flood of tears” (Conf. 3.19). She replied that she mourned Augustine’s separation from God, to which the man told her “to have no
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