I’m reading Augustine’s Confessions again. He is terribly hard on himself for things that most of us would dismiss without a second thought: we’d say either “Oh, that wasn’t so bad,” or “You didn’t know any better,” or “You were just trying to test your boundaries,” or “You were still finding yourself,” or “You were only 16”.
Do we tend to go easy on stuff like that because we are permissive, or because we have a better understanding of psychology than he did?
Is he hard on himself because he’s a fanatic, or because he understands sin better than we do?
Is he especially neurotic, or are we especially degenerate?