St Augustine Opines on Being and Nothingness


St. Augustine and I are pals!  I never would have thunk it!  This is a profound observation about the majesty of God and his creation.  (This was posted this morning on (  By the way, I intend to do a better job of giving credit for where I “steal” some of this stuff!


My brothers and sisters, where does time go? The years slip and slide past us, day by day. Those things which were, no longer are; those things yet to come, are not here. The past is dead; the future is yet to come, but only to pass away in turn. Today exists only for the moment in which we speak. Its first hours are already over and behind us, the remainder do not as yet exist; they are still to come, but only to fall into nothingness.

Nothing in this world has constancy in itself. The body does not possess being; it has no permanence. It changes with age; it changes with time and place; it changes as a result of sickness or accident. The stars have as little consistancy; they are always changing in hidden ways, they go whirling into outer space. They are not stable, they do not possess being.

Nor is the human heart any more constant. How often it is disturbed by various conflicting thoughts and ambitions! How many pleasures draw it, one minute this way, and the next minute, that way, tearing it apart! The human spirit, although endowed by God with reason, changes; it does not possess being. It wills and does not will; it knows and does not know; it remembers this but forgets that. No one has unity of being in himself.

After so much suffering, disease, difficulties and pain, let us return humbly to God, to that one Being. Let us enter into that heavenly Jerusalem, that city whose citizens share in Being itself.
Augustine,Commentary on Psalm 121 (Hebrew Ps. 122); CCSL 40, pp. 1801-3; quoted by Robert Atwell,Celebrating the Seasons, Canterbury, 1999, p.416



4 thoughts on “St Augustine Opines on Being and Nothingness

  1. InnerDialect

    ” nor is the human heart ..consistent..” it knows and it does not know… I do agree… been with this thought all day yes’day… ..



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