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From Geoffrey Rees’s very interesting, The Romance of Innocent Sexuality:

Perhaps it is difficult, in an era that is in many ways inured to the fragility of the body’s immersion in the material universe by several centuries of progressive technical mastery of the universe – inured also to the import of that fragility to philosophy and theology by several centuries tradition of isolating philosophy and theology as intellectual disciplines – to appreciate Augustine’s keen awareness of the interrelatedness of body and intellect in relation to God. Such appreciation is potentially very uncomfortable or worse, undermining as it does any sensibility of immunity from dependency, or of progressive diminishment of dependency, as the horizon of self-actualized personal fulfillment. Yet even at the beginning of the twenty-first century human beings remain mortal, finite, embodied creatures. Persons who accuse Augustine of unduly disparaging or denigrating the body may therefore miss sometimes how the claims that they criticize arise out of vivid and searching reflection on embodied experience that is not and cannot be one’s own exactly; that these claims are so troubling because they are rooted so intimately in questioning of one’s created existence; that it is arguably the present age, and not Augustine’s that is fact disparages the body; that Augustine may have raised all the hard questions he does not because he doesn’t take the body seriously, but because he takes the body with ultimate seriousness (156). 

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