Saint Augustine                                           The Augustinian Paradigm


The Account of God


 

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The Theory of Reality

Knowledge, in the Augustinian system, is defined as the purposeful and true understanding of reality, and the truth is defined as the meaning of reality. Reality is both absolute and created, where absolute reality is the Infinite God, and created reality is the world of experience.

In the Christian Theory of Reality God the Infinite Spirit encompasses everything. Every spiritual or cognitive entity manifests as a set of distinctions within the Spirit. Everything else is the structured representation of meaning existing in the Mind of God. Meaning is the language of reality which communicates experience and knowledge to cognitive beings.

 

 

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The Theory of God

God is Spirit, and the major distinctions within the Spirit are given by the Persons or roles of God as the Creator, the Father, the Mother or Holy Spirit, and the Christ. Human individuals, as spiritual beings, are second level distinctions within the Christ.

The diagram SR1 (THE STRUCTURE OF SPIRITUAL REALITY) shows the array of distinctions within the Infinite Spirit.

Diagram SR 1

God the Infinite Spirit is a unity without gender. The Father and Mother Gods have genders which are masculine and feminine respectively, but they are asexual. Masculinity and femininity are based on the division and separation of the originally integrated nature of the Infinite Spirit and result in the functionally different roles of the Mother and Father Gods. The nature of the two genders is radically different but totally complementary. Division and separation are here understood as referring to distinctions within the Spirit, Who is, Him-Herself, always indivisible.

The Christ is a spiritual unity without gender. Human beings have both gender and sexual characters, which is to say they are either masculine or feminine and male or female. Sexuality serves the purposes of individual diversity and species improvement and is employed in humanity as a functional division. Human unity is produced by the unification in marriage of the masculine/male and the feminine/female individuals. 

The system of the intellect is the same for both the male and the female and it provides the functionality required by individuals of both sexes to operate in the world. The development of the intellect in the sexes differs because of the different functions and subjective philosophies of men and women, as dictated by their psychologies and  biologies.

God the Infinite Spirit and the Christ are commonly referred to as masculine but very largely because of the convention of the English language which forbids the use of 'it' for persons as being degrading and insulting.

 

 

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God the Creator

God as spirit is intelligent, knowledgeable, creative, moral and emotional. God creates spiritual or living beings from His own spiritual resources and He is the spiritual nucleus of every being that He creates. God creates reality to represent and communicate meaning which offers the opportunities for learning and self-development, as well as providing the medium for human interaction and fulfilment.

God sees no separation between Himself and His creations and wants for all His forms everything they could and should desire for themselves. For those forms of being which are intelligent and can understand the universe of possibilities, God offers all knowledge and power.

God has created human beings and human reality to achieve His Purposes which are essentially the exploration of the Universe of Possibilities. God is a responsible Being and is competent in what He undertakes.

Since each individual has been created to achieve Godís Purposes, human efforts to bring about new realities are, in principle, consistent with the Will of God. God gives humanity purposes, and wants people to achieve them.

 

 

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The Moral Foundation of the Creation

The Infinite God has, in creating the Moral Universe as a system for the individualisation and development of spiritual beings, separated the Will of the Spirit from the Power of the Spirit. The process of individual development gradually unifies the Will and the Power. The individualised spirit wills, through its power of choice, its own nature, state, and future states of being.

The system of self-creation implies that everything is given and nothing is given. Only that is given which is requisitioned or demanded. The individual may, on the grounds of love or morality, requisition any good. The implication of the morality of self-creation is that God does not interfere in individual lives unless assistance by God is requested and expected. The rules for the requisition of assistance are approximately the same as those of the Augustinian method for achieving knowledge of reality.

 

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GOD THE MOTHER

 

The Systems of the Mother God

The Mother God, as the Guardian of all Knowledge and Power, has the tasks of bringing into being all forms of life and of educating every individual who wants to understand. God the Mother is committed to providing spiritual beings with true understanding, subject to the requisitioning of that understanding by the individual. Nothing is forced onto any created being.

The objectives of God the Mother are achieved through systematic means. The Life generation system is given by the Cosmos, and the Teaching System is based on the Problem Solving System and the creative resources of the Inner Light.

 

 

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The Creation of Individuals

 

The Meaning of a Person in God

The system of the Mother God generates beings who, through proper intellectual development, come to realise their relationship to the Infinite Spirit. The individual is a spiritual manifestation of God and the implications for the individual spirit are:- (a) Individuals are not different from God but are One with God in spirit. (b) Individuals are not separated from God since Spirit is indivisible. (c) Individuals are participators in God and share the Good of God. (d) Individuals come into moral understanding through intellectual development. (e) Individuals can do anything that the moral law allows.

 

 

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The Structure of Humanity

The human community comprises two genders and its structure is based on the relationship between them. The division of humanity into feminine and masculine is spiritual and psychological and reflects the division of the Creation between the Father and Mother Gods of the Holy Trinity. The Christ, in the design strategy for the human community, has repeated this division of roles in producing men and women. The division of human individuals into male and female is a biological strategy to achieve human diversity, which is the physical counterpart to the psychological genders.

Life in all its forms comes into being and develops within the physical and psychological systems of God the Mother. The physical reality is the womb of Life and it is no distortion of ordinary meaning to say that lifeforms are conceived within, and are born from the Mother God, and that they are taught all they need and want to know by the methods of the Holy Spirit which is another name for God the Mother. The role and functions of the Mother Spirit is repeated in the female of the species. The female in fulfilling her motherhood function is an expression and manifestation of God the Mother Whose role is the creation, loving and teaching of new beings.

The most perfect expression of the masculine gender reflects the character of the Father God, and similarly the character of the Mother God is reflected in the most perfect expression of the feminine. The individual who endeavours to express his or her gender perfectly in human relationships is, in doing so, behaving as the Father or Mother God might behave in similar circumstances. As the achievement of the Divine purpose demands the loving and moral cooperative interaction between the Mother and Father Gods, so human purposes demand the loving and moral cooperation of the masculine and feminine, which are the two halves of the Divine Unity as it exists within the Creation. The objective of human continuity and survival is mainly the province of the feminine, and the equivalent masculine objective is human progress. Both sexes share the objective of human fulfilment.

The genders, in the spiritual sense, may be visualised as spiritual or emotional poles somewhat similar to magnetic poles. As it is impossible for a magnetic pole to exist independently of its opposite so neither human gender can exist alone. The unit of the human community is therefore given by the unity of the genders, and not by the physical individual whose state is incomplete and who is therefore incompetent to function separately.

 

 

 

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The Teaching of Individuals

Individual Realities

The individual exists within his or her understanding of personal reality which is seen, validly or otherwise, as a subset of Cosmic reality. The personal reality is an intellectual construction made by the individual for his own purposes and may, or may not, conform to true reality, or to cultural reality as defined by objective knowledge.

In a self-creating system it is assumed that the individual's personal reality is the chosen reality unless the individual takes active steps to change it. Purposes to change personal reality lead to problems and problem solving procedures.

 

 

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The System of Teaching by Reflection of the Intellect.

Every individual sees the Cosmos as he or she understands it intellectually. Better understandings transform the appearance of the Cosmos. The Cosmos as it appears to the individual therefore reflects the quality of the intellect at any time. Problems of understanding indicate to the individual the need to learn, and the better understanding given by the problem solving procedure empowers the individual to function more competently in the Cosmic and cultural realities.

The Holy Spirit teaches by experience. The Spirit gives the problems of experience and also gives the solutions to the problems in the form of understandings. The combination of problems and solutions is necessary to intellectual development. If the problems are not understood the solutions cannot be understood. Reality, which is the creation of the Holy Spirit, is the source of the problems of experience, and the Source of knowledge, variously called the Interior Teacher, the Light of Reason, and the Inner Light, which is a function of the Holy Spirit, is the origin of the solutions or understandings.

 

 

 

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Wisdom

Wisdom is the intuitive creative psychological process that enables life forms in the Cosmos to solve the daily problems of existence. Wisdom takes the individual's current state of affairs as true reality and suggests behaviours which will overcome the current problem. There is always an answer and a solution to every problem. The faculty is personal to the individual, and the predator and the prey may both use the process to achieve their respective ends. A better understanding of the current state of affairs based on past experience is advantageous, whereas fear and panic disintegrate the process and disadvantage the individual.

Animals use the system of Wisdom, or the Inner Light, continuously and non-consciously. Human beings can use it continuously and consciously to achieve a state of  rustic wisdom. The individual who couples a solid grounding in knowledge, and continuous interaction with Wisdom, becomes wise in the fullest sense.

 

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The Inner Light and Knowledge

Knowledge may be seen as an organised record of the teaching of the Wisdom process which is retained in the intellect for future use. In cases of intellectual perplexity the solution may already exist in the intellect in the form of knowledge and the difficulty is therefore a puzzle as defined by Thomas Kuhn.

However, if the problem state of affairs represents a counter instance to current knowledge a theoretical crisis ensues and the problem solving method must be invoked to deal with it. The intellect is compelled to refer the problem to the Inner Light, or Wisdom, for solution.

 

 

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GOD THE FATHER

 

God the Father determines the moral rules within the Creation through the expression of the Moral Law which the Persons of God obey. The Law itself is compatible with the rules of the Moral Universe as established by the Primitive Creator God, and its essential character is that it is the optimal and rational expression of Love.

God the Father is Love acting in the human interest. Just as a human parent limits the power and freedom of immature children, so the Father God takes care to ensure that real power does not fall into the hands of the irresponsible. The gift of Power and the freedom to exercise that power is made subject to moral achievement. In adopting this strategy God Himself accepts moral obligations.

God is morally obliged, and committed, to compensate individuals for the deprivation of Power which results from the separation of the Will from the Power in the Moral Universe. This compensation takes the form of an offer to help the individual, subject to morality and trust.

 

 

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The Theory and Structure of the Good

 

Beyond specific assistance to overcome difficulties, there is the general Power of the Good which is available to assist individuals to achieve their aims in life.

The Good is a systematic application of the Power of God the Father, which is designed to give general support to individuals who trust God. God is committed to supporting, with all possible help, all initiatives and projects, including all wants and desires, subject to moral rules, and also subject to the same conditions. Individuals who love God are fully supported by the Power of the Good.

If the individual can define precisely what he or she wants the Power of the Good can be directed towards its achievement by requisition and trust. The Power is not under individual control but responds to the purposes and objectives of the individual when the prerequisite conditions are satisfied. This Power can be seen operating in sports psychology, but underlies all individual and team efforts to achieve success.

 

 

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The System of Protection

God's support takes two forms. The first is a system, sometimes called the Guardian Angel, and more simply referred to as the Guardian, which is designed to protect the individual and his family from the dangers inherent in a neutral universe. God is committed to protecting individuals from all dangers and threats to the individual's intellectual and physical well-being, such as violence and disease, as well as natural disasters, subject to the individual's claiming and relying on that commitment.

  

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The System of Providence

The second system, called the Providence of God, is designed to supply the individual and his family with all they need to function in the physical universe. God the Father is committed to providing individuals with the needed resources, subject to the same conditions. These are basic systems available to all who can recognise the moral basis of these functions and their own moral rights as creations and manifestations of God.

 

 

 

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The Perfect Reality

 

God is actively involved in the intellectual and spiritual development of every individual, and the acceptance of God's help leads to the understanding of God's purposes in the Cosmos. The understanding that God has designed the Scheme of Creation carries the implication that it is perfect. The appearance of imperfections in the Creation are caused by the limited and often mistaken understandings of individuals.

The Perfect Order must apply to the individual's personal state of affairs in so far as this can be governed by the truth. The spiritual individual therefore sets out to realise this perfect order in his or her own life. The religious method requires the individual to conform to the Will of God. If the Will of God is Perfect, the individual who wills the primacy of the Will of God in his or her life in effect wills God's Perfect Order. It is not necessary to know the Will of God but only to will it.

While the individual holds firmly to the determination of his will to trust the Will of God spiritual progress is achieved. In practice, God gives assistance in the best way to achieve the most desirable ends. Conformity to Augustinian knowledge methodology, the willing of the Will of God, and the recognition of the leadings of God through the enlightenment of the intellect lead, therefore, to the fulfilment of God's purposes with regard to the individual.

 

 

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The Kingdom of God

 

The Kingdom of God is the highest form of given reality and represents that reality that the individual would choose for himself, if he understood all the possibilities for choice, and all the possible consequences of his choice of behaviours.

The condition for access to this Absolute Reality is the recognition by the individual that God and the individual are One. This unity functions as God functions, but only within the reality of the individual as a subreality of the Kingdom of God. It can be described as the freedom to participate in, and enjoy, the gift of the Power of God in the Kingdom of God. It is the right to exist and to act on the same terms as God Himself subject to the morality of God which also limits God's own actions.

Every individual may choose whether or not to opt for entry into the Kingdom and for eternal survival, and this choice is made on whatever understandings can be brought to bear on the problem. God is bound by the morality of self-creation and cannot impose eternal life but can only offer it.

 

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GOD THE CHRIST

 

The Systems of the Christ

One of the possibilities of God is a community of intelligent and potentially unlimited beings. New beings are required by the moral rules of the Creator to take full responsibility for themselves and to create themselves. In practice this has been achieved through the intermediate stage of generating one being, the Christ. The Christ is therefore the ground and community of Life in all its forms.

Absolute potential has been given to the Christ, to be realised as power in time through interaction with the Holy Spirit Who is the Guardian of the Power and Knowledge. Absolute power can realise any possibility, good or evil. The Christ pursues the purposes of the Creator and is bound by the Moral Law.

The systems of the Christ are the System of Life, called Nature, and the system of human community. The two are closely related since survival and success in the Cosmos is almost always a matter of cooperation with others.

 

 

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The System of Life

The Christ, having created Himself and, in doing so become aware of God's purposes, has brought about the generation of a multiplicity of beings. These beings are generated from the Christ's own spiritual resources and so fulfil the minimum condition of self-creation. The record of the development of life shows a progression towards the aim of a species of self-managing beings.

Karl Popper has said that the primary activity of biological evolution is problem solving. This is consistent with the rational understanding of the Cosmos as a problem set. The historical record is given by the set of problems that have been solved in the creation of each species. Problem solving is a psychological activity. Every advance in the physical and mental powers of lifeforms marks the solution of a problem. The order in which these problems have been solved, based on increasing power to function in the physical and mental realities, gives the record of development in time. The chain of problem-and-solution combinations defines the development path of each species back to the original act of creation of life.

The development of human beings is an integral part of the problem solving process, which has physical and intellectual knowledge components. Psychology and Biology study respectively the mental and physical components of the same knowledge development programme. Science contributes to this programme with the objective of empowering life itself to participate in the work of creation. Life, empowered by knowledge, becomes self-creating.

The role of the Christ has been to specify each advance in intellectual and physical evolution. In this development the specifications of the Christ are requisitions to which the Mother God responds by defining and creating the solutions. Humanity as a self-creating lifeform has now reached the stage which permits human participation in future development. The Christ's task now is to support and guide human efforts.

 

 

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The System of Community and Human relationships

With the creation of humanity the Christ has arrived at the point of a self-creating community of intelligent and potentially unlimited beings. The problem that confronts humanity is the design, implementation, and operation of a structured community which is satisfactory to all. The problem exceeds the present capabilities of humanity and can only be achieved through rational knowledge with the guidance of the Christ.

The solution of the Christ to the problem of community is based on the family in which human beings are invited to share in the creative and teaching work of God. The Christian concept of the ideal human community is that of a structure of loving, moral and practical relationships which allow the feminine and the masculine to function cooperatively in families. The correct development of individuals along the path of love and morality towards spirituality and eternal life is more likely to be achieved within family relationships.

The family functions as a group culture which is, ideally, a continuation and development of the better features of the family cultures that produced the two parents, and the continuity of the family culture conforms to the human experience of cultures in general that they either improve and evolve or they deteriorate and become corrupt. Where original family backgrounds are good the new family culture will be better, and conversely poor family histories lead to cultural regression in families and are a cause of decline in social standards. The human purpose of better lives in better communities requires that the fundamental human aims of survival, progress and fulfilment based on the human family and its culture are central to social and political thinking.

The humane nature of humanity is the true picture of the human community and this is best expressed in a political state which seeks to achieve the human objectives of survival, progress and fulfilment through the community of families cooperating for the common good. The group and family cultures that rely on the teaching, support and protection of God are the most likely to be successful in pursuit of their objectives.

 

 

 

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Human Development

 

Human progress takes two forms. The first is the achievement of the spiritual state by the individual which is the fulfilment of the purpose of God and the second is cultural improvement which can, in time, accelerate the spiritual development of all individuals in the human community.

Spiritual achievement

The spiritual progress of individuals is through stages of moral growth which are marked by the understandings that:-

(1) God intends that human beings should understand what is going on in their lives and take control of their futures, and God offers all knowledge and understanding on simple requisition to the Inner Light.

(2) God is obligated by morality to provide individuals with all necessary means for subsistence in the world through the system of Divine Providence subject to trust in this God-given support.

(3) The diseases and dangers in the world are not intended by God Who provides the system of Divine Guardianship to protect all who trust Him.

(4) To all who trust and rely upon God He provides the Power of the Good which assists individuals to achieve their desires in life.

(5) Those individuals who achieve the requisite standards of love and morality in their understanding and behaviours may enter into the Kingdom of God in which all power is given to them to create their own reality and future. The ultimate aim for human beings is therefore eternal life in the Kingdom.

  

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