Ambrosio’s lectures guide a person through the evolution and history of two western traditions that exhaustively addresses the question of life’s meaning. The hero figure is the derivation from Greek and Roman culture that focuses on the humanist philosophical tradition. The saint figure is the Judo-Christian/ Islamic theistic tradition that focuses on the religious aspects of life meaning. These figures are metaphorical, and they give the deep understanding that people need to know (Meltzer et. al., 1212)
The hero’s universe is a paradigm of uncongenial forces of necessity and fate unresponsive to human desires. Self-fulfillment and mastery through achieving things is the realization of the Hero. The Hero overcomes obstacles and impediments in the quest to fulfill his fate wholly and with perfection. Through various contexts in the works of philosophy and history, we tend to know the identity of the Hero. The Hero emerges in characters like Socrates, Augustine of Hippo and Marcus Aurelius. Their lives and great works of arts give a clear exploration that portrays the identity of the Hero (Meltzer et. al., 122).
The Saint asserts a peculiar sense of life by comparing oneself to others. The comparison is always based on humanity and divine, a covenant bond of care and responsibility whose aim is love. The identity of the Saint is in acts like Jesus Christ, Abraham or Muhammad and in philosophy it is through Soren Kierkegaard and the Dostoevsky novels. The Hero relates to the artistic path of fulfilling the desires of oneself. Through the history that we read about Augustine of Hippo, it is clear that he got satisfaction from writing works of art that carried knowledge. The theology that his books exude gives in-depth information for people to learn life’s teaching. Augustine of Hippo was hell-bent on ensuring that he drove a point home through his various works, and this explains his resilience. All the challenges that stood on his way were a motivation for him to write more things. He is considered one of the founders of founders of churches and his influence was crucial in the development of western Christianity. There is self-fulfillment that Augustine of Hippo got from doing the work and seeing it borer fruits. This is an epitome of the Hero, and it gives a good explanation of life meaning (Royce et. al., 399).
However, Muhammad was a religious leader who was believed to be a prophet from God. He unified the Arabians into one singular group of Islam. The restoration of faith, love and oneness was the work of Muhammad in Islam.
Both Augustine of Hippo and Muhammad had a mission of accomplishing something. However, Augustine of Hippo was keen in the development of western Christianity while Muhammad was unifying Arabians to be Islam. Augustine of Hippo was not on religion grounds as Muhammad and thus his character is more of the Hero than of the Saint. Nonetheless, their roles have an indispensable marriage and it is safe to say that there was the Hero character in Muhammad (Royce et. al., 400).
Muhammad was driven by love in the quest for Arabians unity, which bred the Islam religion. Augustine of Hippo had the passion to realize the development of the western Christianity. These two people were forces in the achievement of self-fulfillment (Augustine of Hippo) and love (Muhammad). Augustine of Hippo finally achieved his goal of conversion since Christianity in the west spread while Muhammad accomplished his mission of totalization since the Islam religion was formed.
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Meltzer, Françoise, and Jaś Elsner. Saints: Faith Without Borders. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2011. Print.
Royce, Josiah, John J. McDermott, and Ignas K. Skrupskelis. Culture, Philosophy, and Religion. New York: Fordham Univ. Press, 2005. Print.