Tuesday, December 18, 2007

"Every Man has an Unconscious Faith, even if he is a Conscious Unbeliever"

"Every Man has an Unconscious Faith, even if he is a Conscious Unbeliever"

Martinez said:

Yes, but the “unconscious” forces were a moral conscience and God’s love seeking a beloved son.

Younos said:
For St. Augustine, the unconscious forces were not "a moral conscience" or God's love but something that runs contrary to both. St. Augustine believed that the moral conscience and God's love were both rational, whereas the unconscious was irrational libidnal energy. He argued that apart from God's grace man is incapacitated by these unconscious forces and is therefore incapable of doing what is rational and right. Someone who comes under God's grace has a lifelong process ahead of him, a process whereby he only gradually overcomes the powerful libidnal energies at work within himself. St. Augustine defined this process as that of "justification" -- that is, the process of being made more and more "just". After all, when the apostle Paul spoke from the perspective of a man without grace he said, "I know what is right, but I cannot do it. What I want to do, I do not do -- but what I hate, this I keep on doing. Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?"

Martinez responded:

Pedro Meseguer, S.J., who knew more about St. Augustine than you or I wrote:
“St. Augustine has said that God is more us than we ourselves. And, he says, every man has an unconscious faith, even if he is a conscious unbeliever.
(The Secret of Dreams, Page 186)
“St. Augustine’s famous sentence...‘Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in thee.’ God is then, not only the ontologically, but psychologically, the human soul’s centre of gravity.”
(The Secret of Dreams, Page 185)
“St. Augustine says here that not only a repository of memories exist, but that it is ‘aroused and activated’ by hidden (unconscious) design of heavenly beings or of the will, that is by individual and affective tendencies, since in ancient and current modern usage the concept of voluntas has this meaning as well as that of ‘rational will’”
(The Secret of Dreams, Page 28)


At 11:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


You may ask any theologian or scholar: St. Augustine _very clearly_ equated that which Freud would later call the "unconscious" with libidnal energies of the body. Pedro Meseguer is referring to something else altogether when he cites St. Augustine as speaking of "unconscious" centers of human gravity.

Ken Younos

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