St. Augustine

The Emotions: A Primer

By |2019-07-10T23:22:11-06:00February 19th, 2018|Categories: Aristotle, Featured, George Stanciu, Great Books, Love, St. Augustine, St. John's College, St. Thomas Aquinas|

Although the potential range of emotional experience is essentially the same in all human beings, each culture exhibits its own patterns, inculcating certain feelings while discouraging others, promoting either expression or restraint, and defining variously the place of the emotions in everyday life… Americans believe that every person’s interior life is unique; consequently, an [...]

Awaiting the King: Developing a Christian Imagination

By |2019-10-30T12:07:27-06:00January 6th, 2018|Categories: Books, Christianity, Conservatism, Culture, Gospel Reflection, Love, St. Augustine, Virtue|

The church needs to ensure it is offering the true account of reality, rather than the account that the world is offering. That account, expressed through liturgy and worship, will form the Christian political imagination… Awaiting the King: Reforming Public Theology by James K.A. Smith (256 pages, Baker Academic, 2017) The present historical moment is [...]

In the Beginning Was the Word

By |2017-11-04T07:31:54-06:00November 3rd, 2017|Categories: Christianity, Gospel Reflection, Joseph Pearce, Language, St. Augustine|

If we do not understand words, through the apprehension and comprehension of their definitions, we cannot even begin to understand the wonders and glories of the cosmos that the Word Himself has brought forth… It seems that Mark Malvasi, in his latest essay on these pages, seeks to continue what he calls our “gentlemanly [...]

Virtue and the City

By |2019-06-11T16:09:36-06:00October 26th, 2017|Categories: Cicero, Featured, Philosophy, Political Philosophy, Politics, St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, Virtue|

To attain virtue in solitude defeats the communitarian instincts of human nature. The avenue of politics is one of the mediums by which moral excellence can, and should, be practiced—for there are tremendous benefits wrought to the rest of society as a result… “We see that every city is some sort of community, and [...]

Augustine: A Saint for Eternity

By |2019-05-14T13:56:25-06:00August 27th, 2017|Categories: Aeneid, Catholicism, Civilization, Modernity, Paul Krause, Plutarch, Sainthood, St. Augustine, Thucydides, War|

Augustine passed on to us, and all posterity, prescient words of wisdom: that even in the most disconcerting and dark of times, beauty, compassion, truth, love, and happiness abound… When the Visigoths sacked Rome in 410, the city that had taken the world captive had fallen into captivity. The event was a transformative moment [...]

Jonathan Edwards: Founding Father of American Political Thought

By |2019-05-16T13:55:37-06:00August 26th, 2017|Categories: American Founding, Freedom, History, Leadership, Philosophy, Plato, Politics, St. Augustine|

Jonathan Edwards helped to invent a new America, committed to a national covenant and an unprecedented spiritual egalitarianism… In 1930, the historian Henry Bamford Parkes critically assessed the legacy of America’s most famous Puritan intellectual, Jonathan Edwards. According to Parkes, “it is hardly a hyperbole to say that, if Edwards had never lived, there [...]

T.S. Eliot’s “The Fire Sermon”: Of Memory & Salvation

By |2017-11-03T21:03:24-06:00August 8th, 2017|Categories: Conservatism, Featured, Modernity, St. Augustine, T.S. Eliot|

T.S. Eliot reminds us that the answers to our soul’s depravity are all around us, in our collective culture—the books we read, the places we inhabit, the music we listen to—but also that culture can only survive if we remember it and keep it alive… “These things I do within, in that vast chamber [...]

Augustine and Limited Government

By |2019-08-22T15:21:41-06:00July 29th, 2017|Categories: Catholicism, Christianity, Civilization, Featured, Government, Order, Philosophy, Political Philosophy, St. Augustine|

Augustine recognized that the flaws of human nature precluded perfection on earth, and he concluded that government cannot save souls by coercing virtuous conduct… Since Augustine’s death in 430 A.D., the world has changed so much that this irreplaceable figure of Christianity would likely find difficult it to recognize. The advent of extraordinary technological [...]

On the Mystery of Teachers I Never Met

By |2017-07-31T23:48:01-06:00July 21st, 2017|Categories: Aristotle, Christian Humanism, Education, Fr. James Schall, Great Books, Hilaire Belloc, Literature, Philosophy, Plato, St. Augustine, Tradition, Truth|

The mystery is how one person whom I never met, through recountings down the ages of how many others whom I also have never met, could shed light on each other, eventually to enlighten me… In The Apology, Socrates brought up the question of whether he was paid for being a teacher, like the Sophists, who were paid for their skill [...]

On Debate and Existence

By |2019-04-04T11:22:41-06:00May 18th, 2017|Categories: Eric Voegelin, Ideology, Philosophy, Plato, Politics, St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas|Tags: |

The speculations of classic and scholastic metaphysics are edifices of reason erected on the experiential basis of existence in truth. We cannot withdraw into these edifices and let the world go by, for in that case we would be remiss in our duty of “debate”… In our capacity as political scientists, historians, or philosophers [...]

The Utopia of Thomas More: A Contemporary Battleground

By |2017-06-22T08:37:43-06:00March 9th, 2017|Categories: Catholicism, Cicero, Literature, Philosophy, Plato, St. Augustine, Thomas More|

By thinking through the limits and possibilities of political life, as presented in Utopia, the careful reader imitates Cicero and Thomas More by preparing for politics through the careful study of great literature… “The struggle is not merely over an iso­lated work of genius but over a whole culture”—so says Stephen Greenblatt about Thomas [...]

Edmund Burke on Free Will, Christian Charity, & the Good Society

By |2019-09-17T14:09:34-06:00December 16th, 2016|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Charity, Christianity, Conservatism, Edmund Burke, Featured, St. Augustine|

Christianity, Edmund Burke held, is the great equalizer. Not only is it the first force in the world to recognize the moral equality of all men and women, but it allows the high and the low to become one in their equal desire for the good society… In a manner similar to Cicero with [...]

Fanaticism: Distorting Humanity?

By |2016-07-26T16:03:44-06:00July 26th, 2016|Categories: G.K. Chesterton, Ideology, Jane Austen, St. Augustine, St. John Henry Newman|

A fanatic is a person obsessed with one idea, a monomaniac ruled by one dominant compulsion that governs all his thoughts and actions. He is enslaved by one predominant passion that dictates all his motives and decisions. Ruled by revenge, Captain Ahab in Moby Dick is determined to hunt and kill the white whale that inflicted [...]