On October 23rd, 2014, we updated our
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An age of speculative philosophy, rather than scientific research.
An age of elaborate systems:
i) Love = courtship
ii) War = chivalry
iii) Society = the Great Chain of Being
iv) Universe = the four elements
v) Medicine = the four humours
vi) Philosophy = scholasticism
vii) Religion = Christianity
It was an age of synthesis and engagement : European culture in the middle ages adopted and perfected a coherent model of the universe. Individuals were engaged in the social and cosmic order.
The synthesis of theology, science and history created a single, complex, harmonious mental model from:
The renaissance in Europe was sparked by the rediscovery of ancient Greek and Roman texts. The values and ideas they contained led to a series of revolutions in European culture. The movement is called renaissance humanism . The new culture in Europe was human-centred or anthropocentric.
Asserted the primacy of reason and free will.
Asserted the individual over the collective.
Asserted a personal, rationally understood religious understanding based on virtue and discipline over the collective ritual and Christian agape.
Asserted an understanding of human flourishing that involved no relation to a higher order.
Paradigms had shifted from a vertical axis (spiritual and transcendent) to a horizontal (materialist and immanent).
Renaissance humanism was the philosophical and cultural catalyst that initiated a new human centred (anthropocentric) understanding of our place in the cosmos. It affected:
Revolution and Emancipation
Revolutions inflame the feeling that life in society is perpetual constraint, the eternal cause of discontent.
Emancipation is the immediate appeal of all revolutions. It offers the opportunity to escape from the discipline society imposes.
Question : What to believe? How to worship?
Example : Protestant Reformation.
Personality : Martin Luther, Henry VIII, Elizabeth I.
Values : Emancipation, Primitivism.
Question : Who will rule? Monarch or Parliament?
Example : English Civil War.
Personality : James I, Charles I, Charles II.
Values : Emancipation, Secularism.
Liberal and Individual 18 & 19C
Question : What is the status of the individual in society?
the notion of a major change in a certain thought-pattern — a radical change in personal beliefs, complex systems or organizations, replacing the former way of thinking or organizing with a radically different way of thinking or organizing.
The Modern World is an Age of Analysis …things come apart
All institutions and paradigms have radically transformed. However, by 1950 the modern world has ended and the values that energised society have lost their power to move people. The post-modern world is atomised and is characterised by feelings of alienation, pessimism, disenchantment and malaise.
The Modern World
Shifted our understanding of our place in the cosmos from a vertical plane (transcendence, engagement, enchantment) to a horizontal one (immanence, material, disenchantment).