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Confessions

Edited By: Maria Boulding
Random House, Inc / 1998 / Paperback

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Product Description

Writing in the last years of the fourth century A.D., Saint Augustine of Hippo created what is at once the first true autobiography in Western literature and among the most sophisticated yet accessible theological arguments in the history of Christianity. With extraordinary candor and psychological acumen, Augustine recounts his passage from a life of sensuality, Manichaean superstition, and empty careerism to a geniune spiritual awakening, and he articulates views on marriage, morality, and faith that have shaped our discourse ever since. The Confessions allows us to appreciate both the startling modernity of Augustine's insights and the imperishable poetry of his voice.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 400
Vendor: Random House, Inc
Publication Date: 1998
Dimensions: 8 X 5 X 1 (inches)
ISBN: 0375700218
ISBN-13: 9780375700217
Availability: Expected to ship on or about 08/31/16.
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Series: Moody Classics

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Publisher's Description

"God is our home but many of us have strayed from our native land.
The venerable authors of these Spiritual Classics are expert guides--
may we follow their directions home."  --Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Writing in the last years of the fourth century a.d., Saint Augustine of Hippo created what is at once the first true autobiography in Western literature and among the most sophisticated yet accessible theological arguments in the history of Christianity. With extraordinary candor and psychological acumen, Augustine recounts his passage from a life of sensuality, Manichaean superstition, and empty careerism to a genuine spiritual awakening, and he articulates views on marriage, morality, and faith that have shaped our discourse ever since. The Confessions allows us to appreciate both the startling modernity of Augustine's insights and the imperishable poetry of his voice. With a new Preface by MacArthur Fellow Patricia Hampl,
author of Virgin Time and A Romantic Education.


In the annals of spirituality, certain books stand out both for their historical importance and for their continued relevance. The Vintage Spiritual Classics series offers the greatest of these works in authoritative new editions, with specially commissioned essays by noted contemporary commentators. Filled with eloquence and fresh insight, encouragement and solace, Vintage Spiritual Classics are incomparable resources for all readers who seek a more substantive understanding of mankind's relation to the divine.

Author Bio

St Augustine of Hippo, the great Doctor of the Latin Church, was born at Thagaste in North Africa, in 354 CE. He was brought up as a Christian but he was soon converted to the Manichean religion. He also came under the influence of Neoplatonism. However, in 387 he renounced all his unorthodox beliefs and was baptized into Christianity. His surviving works have profoundly influenced Christian theology and the psychology and political theology of the West.


From the Hardcover edition.

Discussion Questions

"God is our home but many of us have strayed from our native land. The venerable authors of these Spiritual Classics are expert guides--may we follow their directions home."--Archbishop Desmond Tutu

The Vintage Spiritual Classics present the testimony of writers across the centuries who have pondered the mysterious ways, unfathomable mercies, and deep consolations afforded by God to those who call upon Him from out of the depths of their lives. These writers are our companions, even our champions, in a common effort to discern the meaning of God in personal experience.

The questions, discussion topics, and background information that follow are designed to enhance your group's reading of the six works that make up the first series in Vintage Spiritual Classics. We hope they will provide you with a variety of ways of thinking and talking about these ancient and important texts.

We offer this word about the act of reading these spiritual classics. From the very earliest accounts of monastic practice--dating back to the fourth century--it is evident that a form of reading called lectio divina ("divine" or "spiritual" reading) was essential to any deliberate spiritual life. This kind of reading is quite different from that of scanning a text for useful facts and bits of information, or advancing along an exciting plot line to a climax in the action. It is, rather, a meditative approach, by which the reader seeks to taste and savor the beauty and truth of every phrase and passage. There are four steps in lectio divina: first, to read, next to meditate, then to rest in the sense of God's nearness, and, ultimately, to resolve to govern one's actions in the light of new understanding. This kind of reading is itself an act of prayer. And, indeed, it is in prayer that God manifests His Presence to us.

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  1. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    May 19, 2000
    S. M. Schoepke
    It is very difficult, by modern standards, to find a man so broken in spirit, so contrite in heart, and so desperate for God, asAugustine. His "Confessions" reveal to us our own weaknesses,our own struggles, and our own fears, as we cry out for more ofGod. Likewise, they show us the undying faithfullness of our beloved Redeemer to rescue us from all the snares and folliesof our own sinful flesh. They uncover the heart of a loving Father who wants nothing less than all of our affections. In the words of Augustine, "Thou hast made us for Thyself and our hearts are restless until they find rest in Thee."
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