The Happy Life; Answer to Skeptics; Divine Providence and the Problem of Evil; Soliloquies (The Fathers of the Church, Volume 5)

The Happy Life; Answer to Skeptics; Divine Providence and the Problem of Evil; Soliloquies (The Fathers of the Church, Volume 5)

Ludwig Schopp
Denis J. Kavanagh
Robert P. Russell
Thomas F. Gilligan
Copyright Date: 1948
Pages: 454
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt31nk76
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  • Book Info
    The Happy Life; Answer to Skeptics; Divine Providence and the Problem of Evil; Soliloquies (The Fathers of the Church, Volume 5)
    Book Description:

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    eISBN: 978-0-8132-1105-3
    Subjects: Religion

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. [i]-2)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. 3-4)
  3. FOREWORD
    (pp. 5-26)
    Ludwig Schopp

    Among all the ‘Fathers of the Church,’ St. Augustine is undoubtedly the greatest, the most original, fruitful and versatile.³ ‘Different Fathers [have said] different things, but this [Father] said every thing with Roman eloquence . . .’ So reads the inscription under a fifth- or sixth-century fresco⁴ depicting St. Augustine. The high regard for this Father of the Church apparently was even then widespread,⁵ and it flourished more during the Middle Ages.⁶ Antoninus (d. 1459), the saintly Bishop of Florence, could write:⁷ ‘What the sun⁸ is to the sky, St. Augustine is to the Doctors and Fathers of the Church....

  4. THE HAPPY LIFE
    (pp. 29-84)

    The happy life (De beata vita) , holds a unique place, among the works of St. Augustine. Of all his writings handed down to posterity, it was the first one the great African completed. It is true that the Answer to Skeptics (Contra Academicos) had been started and that, in youthful enthusiasm, he had written a treatise On the Beautiful and Fitting (De pulchro et apto), but the latter book, as well as almost all memory of it, had been lost at the time when he composed his Confessions.

    Fortunately, Augustine bequeathed to us, almost at the end of his...

  5. ANSWER TO SKEPTICS
    (pp. 87-226)

    Ardent desire for truth and happiness was the fundamental trait of St. Augustine’s thought from his earliest youth. He first tried to find happiness in the goods of the material world. But the perishable and the finite things could not hold him. This restless soul found repose only in God, the Supreme Truth and Good. It was from profound practical experience that, at the end of a long errant journey, he wrote: ‘Thou hast made us for Thyself, and our heart is restless, until it rest in Thee.’²

    At last, St. Augustine had sufficiently matured to see this truth. He...

  6. DIVINE PROVIDENCE AND THE PROBLEM OF EVIL
    (pp. 229-332)

    In the history of human thought and achievement St. Augustine occupies a special place. His intellectual development is intimately connected with the personal circumstances of his eventful life. It would, in fact, be difficult to find throughout the vast history of human thought a personality in whom the bond between mind and life has been more dominant and decisive.

    It is not surprising, therefore, that traces of Augustine’s arduous and impassioned quest for truth should be clearly discernible in his first philosophical writings after his conversion. His Answer to Skeptics (Contra Academicos)¹ is a sound refutation of universal skepticism, the...

  7. THE SOLILOQUIES
    (pp. 335-426)

    The long and difficult road of Augustine’s struggle to the faith of his mother Monica ended at last in the garden at Milan. There, as he describes it for us in one of the most poignant scenes in all the literature of conversion, he took up and read the Book of the Apostle Paul at the bidding of the voice of an unseen child. ‘Instantly, as by a clear and constant light infused into my heart, the darkness of all former doubts was driven away.’

    This was in mid-summer, 386. He would not, however, be baptized until he had passed...

  8. INDEX
    (pp. 427-450)