In 386, at the age of 32, Augustine converted to Christianity. As he tells the story in the Confessions, the complex and dramatic events that constituted his conversion brought to successful conclusion a search he had begun as a teenager at Carthage with his reading of Cicero's Hortensius. Cicero had inspired in him a passionate yearning for the sort of immortality that comes with wisdom. After more than a decade of fruitless searching, Augustine finally discovered that the wisdom he had longed for was to be found with the God of Christianity. The discovery came in a moment of intellectual vision in which Augustine glimpsed and thereby came at last to understand the divine nature. “At that moment,” he tells us, “I saw [God's] 'invisible nature understood through the things that are made' [Romans 1.20]” (Conf. 7.17.23).
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