Augustine on Community - Dictionary of Arguments
Höffe I 105
Community/Augustine/Höffe: The secular earthly state (civitas terrena) dominated by self-love (amor sui) is opposed by the divine community (civitas divina(1)), which is spiritually shaped by love of God (amor dei). Since already the self-love owed to an innate corruption, the original sin, does not only characterize the devil by its form, which is elevated to malice, the community opposing the God state is also called "state of the devil" (civitas diaboli,(2)).
Höffe: Even if the term "God's state" - to be translated better as "God's city" according to the image of "Jerusalem" - refers to the counter-concept, the secular state, the divine kingdom enjoys the supreme priority.
Although the God state, the community of those chosen by God, replaces the earthly state, both are "to a certain extent interwoven and mixed together in this world time". Someone can, because he is baptized, outwardly be a member of the church, but in reality a member
Höffe I 106
of the secular state, while an enemy of the church can be a future fellow citizen of the God state(3). The state of God is ruled by eternal bliss and an everlasting Sabbath, that is, a feast day.
Background: Before Christianity was first tolerated under the Roman emperors, later recognized as equal and finally advanced to the state religion in the 4th century, the typical position of an ostracized minority was imposed: Like the church teacher Tertullian with the majority position one emphasizes the negative, here that state rule is based on warlike violence, and therefore rejects it. >State/Augustine, >Order/Augustine.
1.Augustine, The State of God, De civitate dei, XIV, 28
2. Ibid., XVI, 16
3. Ibid., I, 35_____________Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
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