Augustine on the Two Cities - Paper Example

Published: 2021-07-26 06:40:04
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Harvey Mudd College
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Essay
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This paper is a summary of the lecture given by the professor. The professor introduces the lecture by presenting the work of Burke concerning Augustine on the two cities. The setting of Augustine work is Holy Roman Empire. The City of God was an answer to the changes that had occurred in the Roman Empire which had led to the weakening of the empire due to the influence of Christianity. The City of God was, therefore, an answer that pointed out, contrary to the teaching of the ancient philosophers that no earthly political system could ever be relied upon for the ultimate satisfaction of the essential human needs which are spiritual and not material ones. Augustine predicted that there would come an emperor who would fix the troubles that faced the Roman Empire according to the argument presented by one of the students. The professor clarifies that these problems included selfish love, destruction, and conflict.

The son of God was sent here on Earth, and after only three years he was crucified and killed due to political reasons. After the resurrection, the son of God taught about the kingdom of God to his disciples for forty days. Jesus focused on one main topic which was the meaning of Kingdom of God. The professor poses a true or false question that states; the kingdom of God is a political Kingdom. The professor answers that the statement is false. Jesuss disciples were asking him if he has come to restore the Kingdom to the children of Israel. Then Jesus answered them that he was not on earth for earthly gains but to ensure that those that believe in him get the heavenly reward.

In the book written by Burke on page 198 paragraph four, there exists a confusion about the relation of the city of God to the Christian church which is Catholic. The professor poses a question if this confusion is brought about by mistakes that Augustine could have made in a few sentences. From the discussion between the teacher and the student, it is evident that there is a difference between the kingdom of the highest God and the church since there are people outside the church who will go to heaven. The professor asks if both the body and the soul are real or unreal. Do we suffer, is life all about suffering? The answer given by the professor is yes. The cause of suffering is selfish desire. Suffering is curable by following the right path.

The church is the physical representation of the Kingdom of God here on Earth. The professor clarifies that the other members of the kingdom of God are living in the extraterrestrial and other planets. The doctrine of real human nature is the cause of the hatred towards Augustine as most people misunderstand him. Flesh represents all human nature, soul as well as the body. There are two cities in America in which one is focused on the spiritual and the other is focused on the worldly and material things.

The two cities show the two kinds of love. The church is infected with evil, and there is some good on earth. There is a difference in a believer and non-believer regarding health. Believers hold health in high standards since the body is the temple of God and should be taken care of. The two loves make the two cities. The love of God makes Jerusalem, and the love of the world is represented by Babylon. Let one question himself on what he loves, and he will know to which city he belongs. Augustine states that for men who love one another and love God constitutes the town of God. The foundation of Christians is placed in heaven hence the church should lean towards the heaven. Spiritual gravity is opposite of the real gravity. Peace and order in the universe start with order and peace at heart, individual, the family, the world and finally the universe. Finally, Augustine concludes by saying that without God life is meaningless.

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