Augustine and Aquinas in RoyaumeFrance

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RoyaumeFrance is inspired by the ultra-realism of Augustinian Platonism complemented by the logical inferential methodology of Thomist Aristotelianism. Both influences combined to mold her into her heavenly Form in the center of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Through the Augustinian, Platonic orientation, belief became her foundation for understanding. The affective  movement of the will motivated by faith took primacy over the intellect (will before intellect in the Platonic ultra-realist sense) to lead me on the Trail of the Dogmatic Creed with St. Joan of Arc and St. Thérèse of Lisieux. Though, while RoyaumeFrance became known through a priori ideas of illumination formed through Eucharistic adoration, she combined this top-down inspiration with bottoms-up inductive, Thomistic  validation as I journeyed alongside our saintly sisters. A priori ideas of illumination made up the stairway emanating down from Heaven in the Augustinian, Platonic sense. The Journey on the Trail of the Dogmatic Creed with Sts. Joan and Thérèse made up the ascent of this stairway guided by a Thomistic inductive understanding of the panorama that is the Kingdom toward which we climb. However, RoyaumeFrance’s primary philosophical orientation was Augustinian faith before reason not reason before faith. Reason developed from faith rather than the other way around. I “believed that I might understand” in the Augustinian sense rather than seeking to “understand before I could believe” in an Aristotelian sense.

Royaume France is a systematic science (see The Science of RoyaumeFrance). In a more Thomist and Aristotelian sense, she utilizes the Four Causes to understand Our Lord’s work in drawing us up the stairway to the Final Form of the Kingdom of God in Heaven. Furthermore, she is imbued by the Aristotelian understanding of potentiality and pure act that is manifest in the climb up the stairway. RoyaumeFrance periodically refers to St. Thomas Aquinas throughout her Platonic discourse. The key to this admixture in RoyaumeFrance is that we first “believe that we might understand” in the Augustinian sense while Thomist Aristotelianism aids us in understanding what we can accept and what we must reject on our journey. However, Augustinian Platonism is our first philosophical orientation.

Why?

Platonic ultra-realism is the gift given me by St. Joan of Arc, who is perhaps the most astonishing and magnificent example of Platonic Ultra-Realism in the history of the Church, that resulted in a stunning reorientation of my entire being, from my mind and heart to the core of my soul. The Aristotelian approach of “I must first understand before I can believe” almost killed me. I was close to the first death and with it the second as well. For roughly twenty-five years, I was spiritually enslaved through the Aristotelian-first lens, and Joan of Arc saved my life by turning the lens around. I came to “believe in order to understand.” With the grateful assent of my intellect to the grace of God working through the patronage and sisterly care of St. Joan, RoyaumeFrance appeared slowly as like a panoramic landscape appearing ever so gradually in the rising mist of the morning sun. I described this sentiment in the following poem:

Across the cresting hills this dawn

Across the cresting hills this dawn
Finds dreamy landscapes veiled by mist
Our Lady points through fields beyond
Amidst their haze a shadow sits

As sunlight breaks the shades turn true
The figure, clear, on horseback, too
Our Lady smiles, it’s Joan of Arc!
A saint to guide me to her heart

In Mary’s heart, Christ’s Kingdom’s found
The Maid knows well the pathway stark
By fire in glory she was crowned
That Kingdom loves God’s Joan of Arc!

This saintly Maid inspires my soul!
I follow Joan through fire or cold
Toward Christ’s Kingdom in Mary’s heart
Toward Christ’s Kingdom in Mary’s heart

Joan fave cloud
St. Joan of Arc is a magnificent example of Platonic Ultra-Realism.

The journey toward Christ’s Kingdom in Mary’s heart was clearly Augustinian while Aquinas was an irreplaceable support in developing the reasoning along the way. Both of these pillar doctors of the Church supported RoyaumeFrance’s development. The Summa was a frequent source of inspiration but only in the light of Augustine’s City of God.

The Church leans fundamentally on Thomist Aristotelianism for her teachings and development of doctrine, and we are all the better for it. However, we must be careful to avoid the Hegelian error of believing that Augustine passed away to the dustbin of Church dialectical history to make way for Aquinas. That same Hegelian spirit is the “Spirit of Vatican II” that so bedevils the Church today. On the contrary to the dialectic, “Christ’s Kingdom in Mary’s heart” is one that reveals itself slowly as the morning mist rises. We understand this in the Pauline sense of “We see now through a glass in a dark manner; but then face to face. Now I know in part; but then I shall know even as I am known” (I Corinthians 13:12), a Platonic Ultra-Realist statement if ever there was one. Augustine does not pass away to make room for Aquinas as the new manifestation of the Hegelian “Spirit.” Both Doctors of the Church help raise the morning mist that we might see the panorama. Augustine gives us what we need to believe, while Thomas gives us the methods to determine what is acceptable in that belief. One complements the other.

Joan of Arc showed me a new point of view, God’s point of view, which is the best description I can give of the Ultra-Realism of Augustinian Neo-Platonism. She turned over the lens, and I received sight. My life’s course was altered astonishingly and irrevocably away from death and toward life through sanctifying grace.

Joan of Arc, that magnificent masterpiece of Platonic Ultra-Realism, brought me freedom in Christ through the Immaculate Heart of Mary. RoyaumeFrance was the result and is nothing less than God’s love for me that I only can offer back to Him. St. Thérèse of Lisieux said that she could love God the way He deserves to be loved only by loving Him back with His own love. I can make no better statement than that as to the affective purpose for the development of RoyaumeFrance. She is God’s love to me through the Immaculate Heart of Mary that is, in turn, my own way of loving Him back.