Confessions

Argument Against Augustine College

In Augustine’s Confessions, he has an internal conflict about his hesitation to convert to Christianity. He claims to disagree with the Manichean ways and beliefs, and lists his reasons why in several passages. The subject of these passages is about will, specifically complete and incomplete wills. However, one of his arguments about this concept makes it apparent that he is influenced by Manichean ideas. In Augustine’s second passage, he clearly states that there are two wills, complete and incomplete. By doing so, he is subtly showing that he is influenced the Manichean theory of two wills.
Augustine’s first argument begins in section 20, starting with his hesitation to convert and comparing it to a man’s physical lack of strength. He then introduces his position on wills. He proclaims that it is easy for the body to obey the soul and to obey the soul’s will. On the other hand, it is not as easy for the soul to obey itself and it’s wills. Augustine thinks that this is because his will was not whole, and if it was whole he would not be pondering it still, he would have just done it already, similar to how his body moves without hesitation.


In section 21, Augustine goes forward with his claim that they mind commands the body,...

Join Now to View Premium Content

GradeSaver provides access to 873 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 6705 literature essays, 1807 sample college application essays, 276 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.

Join Now

Already a member? Log in