On the Free Choice of the Will in Faith or Reason: A Study of Augustine of Hippo


This article is about the phenomenon of will in Augustine of Hippo’s ontology. According to On Free Choice of the Will, Augustine considers that the origin of sin in human beings must not be given by God because He is omni-benevolence. In that case, God has not created any badness in the world, but has arranged the layers of good for all kinds of beings. In order to distinguish human beings from other beings, God has gifted the abilities of reason and free will for human beings’ souls. This will, Augustine argues, makes human beings have the choice to be good or not. Although his argument is based on the theological system, which raises the status of faith in the capacity of human soul and declines reason, his explanation of free choice of the will would be suspected as a preacher’s persuasion. To clarify the suspicions, here I will discuss the functions of the free choice of the will in the status of human soul through his ontology.

Author Information
Yu-Ling Lin, National Chengchi University, Taiwan

Paper Information
Conference: ACERP2018
Stream: Philosophy - Philosophy and Religion

This paper is part of the ACERP2018 Conference Proceedings (View)
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