Confessions Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Why does Augustine find a woman to live with him while his fiance is too young?

2. What type of behavior is not tolerate in Rome?

3. Into what has St. Augustine sunk?

4. At what age does Augustine decide to become a philosopher?

5. What interests Augustine more than higher goals or values?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Augustine believe about the men in the Bible and how does he apply that to people in general?

2. What happens with Augustine and the Manicheans and why?

3. What is Augustine's primary thoughts of when he arrives in Carthage and what does he do with them?

4. What does Augustine feel the pear tree incident symbolized?

5. What does Augustine decide about reading Scripture and interpreting it?

6. What is Augustine's thinking on marriage?

7. What type of job does Augustine do and where does he get his money?

8. How does Augustine feel about the Christianity he comes in contact with and what does he observe about the morals of Christians?

9. What does Augustine say is the difference between how the simple-minded and intellectuals read and understand the Scriptures?

10. What intensifies as Augustine grows into a young man and of what type of behavior does he indulge?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In Book V, Monica has an irrational urge to keep Augustine with her and not let him go to Rome. This incident symbolizes the struggle that all human beings have to control their fleshly desires in favor of their love of God. Discuss the following ideas:

1. For Augustine, is spirituality incompatible with physical life/pleasure (e.g., eating, sex, art, etc.)? Does his ideas about this change over the course of the Confessions?

2. Why do you think Augustine would say that physical life exists if it is incompatible with spirituality?

3. According to Augustine, can someone be highly spiritual and still "indulge" in the pleasures of physical life? What do you think personally?

Essay Topic 2

Augustine asks questions such as, "whether I had any knowledge of myself when I was in the womb?" and, "where did I come from?" Augustine asks all these questions, but they do not shake his faith as they would modern skeptics, but rather strengthen his feeling about the mystery and omnipotence and infinite wisdom of God.

1. What do you think is meant by this statement? Use examples from the book to support your answer.

2. Do you think these two questions Augustine asked are common questions? How important are these two questions to you?

3. How would you go about trying to find an answer to these two questions of Augustine's within yourself or your belief system?

Essay Topic 3

Augustine compares the Trinity to these three things: existence, knowledge, and will. Augustine does this because he is a being that exists, and that both knows and wills.

1. What do you think Augustine means by existence, knowledge and will?

2. Do you agree with Augustine that he can know what the Trinity is because he has existence, knowledge, and will? Why or why not?

3. Do you think only humans have existence, knowledge, and will or do animals? Explain your reasoning.

(see the answer keys)

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