the dance of the ink riddled fingers

Saint Augustine’s Handbook on Faith, Hope, and Love.

Posted in book club by enisea on 11/01/2012

I bought this book for my sister among other things for Christmas just past.  I, however, got the virgin read seeing she was and still is occupied by other novel fictions.  And as my reading goal of 2011 (reading one book a month) stood unfulfilled, I decided I’d give it another go this 2012… beginning with a 70 page little bind the height of my hand.  ‘Pathetic’, you scoff, but I’ve no need to impress you, honestly the first few pages I leafed through intrigued me.

It seems this handbook was an extended reply to a handful of questions asked in letter by devoted Laurence to ‘Saint’ Augustine, a fourth century church father who also boldly suggested “Love God, and do as you please.”  The little handbook acknowledges Saint Augustine as author, and I suppose you could say it has been translated into a more contemporary english, just as the King James Bible was modernised in the New International Version.  This said, there was a spell midway through the book which reverted back to ‘hath’ and ‘bringeth’ in a flashback to Elizabethan.  Yet the dear Saint’s long letter still reeked of older speech, what with relatively repetitive paragraphs and thorough elaborations.  I got a little restless throughout the middle but was back in it by the last quarter. Some interesting and foundational explanations of faith and love.  He reminded me a smidge of C.S. Lewis. Though, like this review, I thought the handbook didn’t taper with a satisfying conclusion (there wasn’t even a conclusion) and ended rather abruptly.


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