One Answer

  1. First, Augustine is at the origin of the theory of interpretation and the philosophy of language. For his contemporaries, his other texts were central. But it was the “Confession” that most influenced modern philosophy.�

    It contains that “special picture of language” with which Wittgenstein begins his “Philosophical Investigations”by refuting it. Wittgenstein describes it this way:�

    “Every word has some meaning. This value is associated with the given word. It is an object corresponding to the given word.”

    In the polemic with this view, the concept of a language game is born.

    Secondly, Augustine is at the origin of the philosophy of time. In Confessions, he formulates for the first time one of the most common ideas about time-presentism (there is only the present), and at the same time gives an argument against the strictest version of it:

    “How does the future, which is not yet there, diminish or disappear? How does the past grow when it is no longer there? Only because it happens in the soul, and only in it there are three times. It waits and listens and remembers: what it waits for passes through what it listens to and goes back to what it remembers. Who can deny that there is no future yet? But in the soul there is an expectation of the future. And who can deny that the past is no longer there? But there is still a memory of the past in my soul. And who can deny that the present has no duration: it passes instantly. Our attention, however, is prolonged, and it translates into oblivion what will appear.”

    Polish philosopher Jerzy Golosz, in his 2016 article “Presentism and the Flow of Time,” argues that presentism must accept the notion of time as a flow formulated in the Confessions, and calls this the “Augustinian condition.”�

    At the same time, it should be borne in mind that Augustine does not give a theory of time, but rather a theory of time perception.

Leave a Reply