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Archive: Other Books > The Consolation of Philosophy - Boethius - 4 Stars

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message 1: by Jason (new)

Jason Oliver | 2063 comments This was written in the 6th century CE and is quite an interesting work made up of verse and prose and shows the backbone of Medieval philosophy and influences philosophy even to our day.

Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius was a member of the Roman senate, very prominent and influential. He was later imprisoned and executed for treason. During his imprisonment, Boethius wrote The Consolation of Philosophy.

In it, Boethius narrates Lady Philosophy coming and visiting him. They discuss good vs evil, fate, death, and other topics, which bring him consolation.

I am now going to plagiarize another summary of the book because they do much better than me.

"Philosophy begins by proving by meticulous reasoning that God is not only good, but the source of goodness. People are good in so far as they participate in divine goodness; they are evil in so far as they reject it. To be human is to accept good; to reject it makes one subhuman. The evil therefore only appear to be triumphant in the world. In fact, their own evil is their punishment.

"The reason the bad seem to be rewarded is that they are favoured by Fortune, the force that rewards and punishes within the world. It is better, Philosophy argues, to follow Providence, the force that sees to it that God's plan is followed, no matter how men mar it.

"Philosophy finishes up by reconciling God's foreknowledge of events with Man's free will. Foreseeing a thing does not necessitate that one has influenced it at all--God's foreknowledge merely enables him to see what will happen. He foresees because, from the perspective of eternity, all events, past, present, and future and simultaneously present to Him."

I found the book very interesting, especially the discussion of foreknowledge. Though the discussion seem religious, they are more a reasoned and less of a theological approach to these subjects.


message 2: by Amy (new)

Amy | 8519 comments Your centuries challenge continues to impress me! You now have knocked off the sixth century, and done impressively. Good for you and good review.


message 3: by Jason (last edited Mar 27, 2018 03:42PM) (new)

Jason Oliver | 2063 comments Thankyou. I have read 10 out of 21. I've done 1-6 14th 18-20.


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