Enlightenment Philosophers : Reason and Ration

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The time was 18th century Europe, ideas were flowing and intellectuals were making a name for themselves in academics. Many well-educated and cultured members of the humankind were digging deeper into their brains to make up reason for all that happens on Earth and beyond. The philosophers Denis Diderot, Voltaire, Cesare Beccaria, Jean-Jacques Rousseau and John Locke contributed to the Enlightenment by educating people of Western Europe on the ideas of logic and philosophy to help explain the world around them. Philosophers of this time were taking a risk by contributing ideas to society that didn’t coincide with the government or church. Denis Diderot got arrested for publishing his belief that God did not belong in science and philosophy (Sic 29). Back then rebels of the law could be sentenced to death or time in prison for heresy or treason. Rulers did not like the thought of intelligent citizens having a greater influence than they did. Voltaire supported the distinction between philosophy and science, especially in public campaigns directed at superstitious people of the time (Sica 124). He believed that in no way were reason and facts about Earth related. Voltaire created the idea of deism, which states the universe is a clock and God is a clockmaker. The opinionated and rebellious ideas of the Enlightenment sparked the French Revolution (Baker 27). Enlightenment thinkers promoted personal thought and natural law. Documents and laws present in the French Revolution were all derived from enlightened thoughts. The French philosophers of the Enlightenment were highly contributable to fresh ideas that sparked a new pattern of thought. Contrary to popular belief, Jean-Jacques Rousseau was born in Geneva, Switzerland despite ... ... middle of paper ... ...sion and new wave thinking comes from past events that took place during the Enlightenment. Vital forces in the founding of the United States, including Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin were highly altered and the groundbreaking ideas of the Enlightenment, therefore, so was their country (Sica 178). Both men were classically educated in the crucial subjects such as mathematics, science, philosophy and history. Jefferson implicitly the significance in making the past successful ideas work out in his infant and growing country. Without the Enlightenment, one can only conceptualize how distinctively diverse the world would be today (Sica 191). Valuable assurances of human and natural rights, statements of liberty and the rights of freedom of speech, religion and print are all aspects rooted in America that came from the revolutionary ideas of the Enlightenment.

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