A.N. Whitehead famously said that all Western philosophy is “footnotes to Plato.” In the same way, as Benedict says, the history of Western psychological understanding and insight comes directly from Augustine.
It is a measure of the late pope’s universality that (while he was still the professor of theology Joseph Ratzinger) Karl Barth, the most renowned Protestant of the 20th century, told his students: “Read him!”
Benedict was so voluminous that I could have picked from a hundred of his works to illustrate his intellectual acumen and his spiritual depth. Here’s one: his marvelous lectures on St. Augustine. Here the minds of pope and saint are so intertwined that I am surprised, given Benedict’s intense and lifelong admiration of Augustine, he did not choose that name for his adopted title when he was elected to the See of Rome. So close is Benedict’s thought to Augustine’s that I often had to look and look again to be sure as to which man’s words I was reading.
Pope Benedict called St. Augustine “The greatest Father of the Latin Church.”
READ ON BELOW…The Intertwined Minds of Pope Benedict XVI and St. Augustine – Crisis Magazine