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Augustinianum

Volume 61, Issue 1, June 2021

Nello Cipriani
Pages 103-135

Il De immortalitate animae di Agostino nella critica più recente

In De immortalitate animae Augustine is not satisfied with completing his proof of the immortality of the soul – which had been left open in the second book of the Soliloquies –; he also answers some possible objections, demonstrating that the rational soul cannot cease to exist, it cannot die, nor can it change into an irrational body or soul. Furthermore, remaining faithful to the programmatic declaration of never wanting to stray from the authority of Christ (Acad. 3, 20, 43), he specifies the ontological status of the soul by affirming that it is, in itself, mutable and therefore not of a divine nature, as Varro had argued. Nor is it a substance foreign to the body, as the Platonists claimed, because the soul has an appetitus ad corpus and, if it questions itself, it easily discovers that it desires nothing else «except to do something, to know with intelligence or with the senses, or only to live, as far as this is in its power» (nisi agendi aliquid, aut sciendi, aut sentiendi, aut tantummodo vivendi in quantum sua illi potestas est).

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