The Catholic and Manichaean Ways of Life conveys Augustine’s early thoughts on the morals and customs practiced by the different sides—that is, Catholic and Manichaean. This younger Augustine intends to disprove the boastings of the Manichaeans that their way of life is more pious and devout than the Catholics—and, further, that the Catholic faith is proven true by its truer systems of devotion.
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For more of Augustine, check out the Fathers of the Church: St. Augustine (30 vols.).
Aurelius Augustinus (354–430) is often simply referred to as St. Augustine or Augustine Bishop of Hippo (the ancient name of the modern city of Annaba in Algeria). He is the preeminent Doctor of the Church according to Roman Catholicism, and is considered by Evangelical Protestants to be in the tradition of the Apostle Paul as the theological fountainhead of the Reformation teaching on salvation and grace.
“‘Hope,’ he says, ‘does not confound us, because the charity of God is poured forth in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.’5 We could not possibly be restored to perfection by the Holy Spirit, however, unless He Himself remained forever perfect and immutable, and this, of course, could not be unless He were of the very nature and substance of God, who alone is eternally immutable and, so to speak, irreversible.” (Page 21)
“Concerning mortal and transitory things, then, the temperate man has this rule of life which is confirmed by both Testaments: he must love none of them nor look upon them as desirable for their own sake, but he must utilize them, in the measure that his life and duties require, with the moderation of a user rather than the passion of a lover.” (Page 34)
“Ineffable Wisdom has so arranged it, therefore, that when we seek to retreat into the darkness, authority comes to our aid and appeals to us with the wonderful deeds and utterances of its sacred books, which like shadows make attractive the brightness of truth.” (Page 11)
“The order of nature is such that, when we learn anything, authority precedes reason; for reason may seem weak when, having stated its argument, it turns to authority for support.1 And because the minds of men are obscured by the habitual darkness of sin and evil which enshrouds them and, as a consequence, lack the clarity of perception proper to reason, it has been beneficially provided that the dazzled eye be led into the light of truth beneath the boughs of authority. But since we are dealing with those who think, and speak, and act contrary to right order and insist that, first of all, a reason be given for everything, I shall give in to them and employ a method of discussion which I consider faulty.” (Page 5)