Augustine’s Ambiguous Book of Nature: The Inward Turn and the Role of the Visible World

Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation

Description

Abstract: Augustine is widely regarded as one of the leading patristic exponents of the celebrated metaphor of the book of nature. However, Augustine’s understanding of creation as a divine book has received only limited scholarly attention. Building on various hints and views in the existing literature, this paper analyses the key texts of the Augustinian book of nature and puts them into a wider perspective that is intriguingly ambiguous. On the one hand, it is shown that the idea belongs to Augustine’s authentic thought and should not be discarded. On the other hand, it is found that overly enthusiastic interpretations of the metaphor should be moderated by Augustine’s inward turn, which gives the book of nature a peculiarly ascetic dynamism.
Period31 May 2021
Event titleAnnual Meeting of the Canadian Society of Patristic Studies
Event typeConference
LocationCanada, Alberta
Degree of RecognitionInternational