The World Explored, the World Suffered Education Issue Nr. 32 July 2020 - Page 45

Augustine appears to be asking us to hope for immortality and in so doing transcend human nature. Arendt, however, undermines the future aspect of human expectation(which includes the expectation of death): "it is memory and not expectation(for instance the expectation of death as in Heidegger's approach(that gives unity and wholeness to human existence. In making and holding present both past and future, that is, memory and the expectation derived from it, it is the present in which they coincide that determines human existence. This human possibility gives man his share in being "immutable" "(Arendt, Love and St Augustine B: 033 192) In an interpretative essay included in the above work Joanna Vecchiarelli Scott and Judith Chelins Stark made the following comment on the above quote: "Arendt also notes that the return to the Creator through imitation "is not a matter of Will and free decision: it expresses a dependence inherent in the face of createdness" ...Mans dependence relies exclusively on remembrance--memory is the "space" between past and future in which the "questing search" for the Creator takes place. Memory is equated with consciousness defined as a fundamental mode of dependence and cited as proof of the gap between essence and existence and the fact that God is both "in" and "outside" man" "(p168) It has been clear throughout this discussion that there are characteristically two worlds for St Augustine: the divine fabric of the world of God and the world created by the efforts and desire(love for the earthly city) of man. The first is an atemporal entity and the second is necessarily temporal with all the accompanying disadvantages. The above quote points out that God is both inside and outside of man and this provision ensures that this dualism is not problematic although the relation between the two worlds appears to require further explanation. It is in this connection that St Augustine's philosophy of History emerges as questionable. There appears in this account a more problematic dualism between a linear history of existence evolving toward unique and unrepeatable events and the Platonic/Aristotelian conception of universal and cyclical forms that constitute the continuous oneness and goodness of Being. The former is present in his tendency to use the Bible as a source for the linear approach. Obviously, there is one and only one unique and unrepeatable creation, one and only one coming, departure and resurrection of Christ, and these perhaps demand the operation of the epistemological mechanism of revelation if we are to understand these events for what they are. This approach, however also requires the epistemological mechanism of