Augustine: Philosopher of Freedom
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“For freedom Christ has set us free,” declares St. Paul to the Galatians. In Augustine: Philosopher of Freedom, Mary T. Clark, R.S.C.J., shows the revolutionary nature of that revelation. With the fullness of the Gospel comes a new opportunity to formulate what it means to be free—and, simultaneously, what it means to be human. Upholding the will, the capacity to freely choose either good or evil, as an essential attribute of the human person, St. Augustine of Hippo shows that freedom, conceptually and experientially, is intelligible only in light of the relationship between creatures and their Creator who freely chose to communicate with them.
The most valuable freedom is not the psychological freedom to do what we will, not the physical, social, or political freedom which exempts us from illegitimate interference from others…but the divine freedom described by Augustine of wanting to do what we ought because we love God and take delight in him.
Learned yet unpretentious, Augustine: Philosopher of Freedom contributes to a more complete and cogent understanding of Augustine’s doctrine of freedom and a persuasive conclusion that in the philosophy of the Doctor of Grace modern man can find those truths he needs most: the meaning of God and the meaning of himself.
Mary T. Clark, R.S.C.J., (1913–2014) was an American Catholic philosopher and a sister of the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Specializing in Augustinian studies and the history of philosophy, she served on the philosophy faculty at Manhattanville College for more than four decades. In addition to Augustine: Philosopher of Freedom, her writings include Augustinian Personalism and An Aquinas Reader.