The Scientific Revolution was one of the most influential movements in history. It paved the way for modern scientific thought and a whole new way of thinking when it came to the state of nature and human nature itself. Leading off of the Scientific Revolution was the Enlightenment, where the scientific method held sway over not only science but philosophy. The motto of the Scientific Revolution, “knowledge is power,” describes the ever needful desire to attain knowledge about the world around us. Francis Bacon believed that knowledge gained through inductive reasoning (a means of seeking out truth through observing what is happening in the world and coming to conclusions based solely on those observations) was the greatest force of all, and had the power to eventually transform the human race.
In the wake of Charles's regicide there was a "popular mid-seventeenth-centaury belief that the establishment of a prefect society was imminent" (coward). Many radical movements, from the Levellers to the 5th monarchists flourished, posing a threat to traditional conformist ideas on political, social and religious aspects, which defined many of the boundaries on which the traditional feudal system was based on. This created much controversy among a nation seeking stability, and so this period can be thought of radical in the sense of change. It is important to be aware just how deeply ingrained the church and the Monarchy was in every day life, both during and after the Civil War. They defined most of the boundaries, and structures of 17th century society, resulting in many radical groups expressing their ideas through religion.
Enlightened science contributed to society by the destruction of the wide domain of medieval errors in method. A byproduct of this was experimental reasoning, which could be used to solve all of man’s problems. In religion it would cause such division and strife that the effects of debate are still felt even today. For during this period there would arise Deism and Materialism. The notion of the essential goodness of man, Humanitarianism, and Atheism.
However, the logic promoted by these early Greek scholastics often contradicted the teachings of the strong European Catholic Church. Not surprisingly, a new group of faithful thinkers in the 14th to 15th century, the humanists, introduced the idea of a capable human, created in God's image, which used its intellect for fulfilling its divine purpose in this world. By the 16th century, some humanists, started to question religious dogmas, and found growing support by researchers in the fields of physics, astronomy, and medicine, who begun to run into more and more difficulties to explain their observations with the traditional approach. One of these scholastics was Galileo Galilei. Church Doctrine vs. Development Galileo Galilei applied the same approach the ancient scholastic had used-observation of natural events- but when his observations suggested that the earth must rotate next to the sun contrary to the deep rooted religious believe that the sun was simply moving through the ... ... middle of paper ... ...uted significantly to Europe's development from medieval blind faith and superstition to rational and critical thinking.
In Candide, Voltaire uses his character Pangloss to imitate the extreme ways of Alexander Pope, another philosopher before the French Revolution. The French Revolution was considered a time of positive change, and Voltaire’s philosophical works affected the beginning of the time period by urging the acceptance of new theories. Voltaire is commonly known for his philosophical writing and as a “crusader against injustice, intolerance, cruelty, and war” (“Voltaire”). He was the most outspoken writer that supported political and social reform. Voltaire was constantly in fear of being jailed, as most of his work criticized both the King and the Church.
Early American transcendentalism has one of the greatest influences towards American society because it is not only a philosophy, but also a religion and physical progression. During the early nineteenth century, “the Transcendentalists set themselves against what they considered to be the materialism, conformity, and played-out liberalism of American religion and society…..”(Timko). If early American transcendentalists were living among civilians today, would present day civilians think the earlier activists were radical and psychotic? During this era, Ralph Waldo Emerson writes, “There are always two parties, the party of the Past and the party of the Future” (Timko). Early radical, transcendental activists believe that their approach of living is the gateway to America’s future and that they are leading by example, in hopes that other non-transcendentalists, intellectual societies will choose follow in their footsteps towards actual freedom.
becomes an unpardonable issue. When taking Locke 's statements into account, it becomes clear that the Declaration 's goals were influenced by this Enlightenment philosopher, who stressed liberty and following natural law. However, Locke was not the only Enlightenment philosopher to influence the Declaration of Independence. Thomas Hobbes 's Leviathan was also largely influential in the creation of the Declaration of Independence. It was during the Enlightenment that the idea of the law of nature‒which was somewhat present in Protestant beliefs as seen by the Leveller 's belief that one has the right to self-preservation due to natural law‒began to be widely accepted.
The new power of scientific knowledge and the engines that it was to build was a subject of two of the greatest playwrights of the period, Christopher Marlowe and William Shakespeare. Marlowe identified the perceived threats that came from irreverence of the church and tradition. Shakespeare wrote a play that focused on the great promise that the renaissance turned out to be. Many in power feared that the promise of returning to old ideas was actually a demonic illusion of prosperity which undermined traditional doctrine. Others enjoyed the thought of the new power that might be enjoyed from conquering distant lands and using the old books as tools to master earth.
Because Shakespeare included a wide range of conflict and overlapping belief systems, assertions tend to become, as Moschovakis puts it, “curiously inconsistent” and “overshadowed” (Moschovakis 462). What can be claimed as transparent in Titus Andronicus, and what I think is appealing to the masses, is that Shakespeare drew upon the major controversial motifs in human history and religion, and he included the evils of hypocrisy which allow for realistic interest regardless of what your religious or political stance is. Moreover, I would argue that Shakespeare exposes a more obvious anachronistic element that can serve in expanding Moschovakis’ arguments. Titus Andronicus demonstrates the time honored obsession over first born sons, and because the play includes a first born son in each family t... ... middle of paper ... ... work is timeless. The permanence of this play is owed to a clever intermingling of opposing belief systems.
Though dualism is a highly regarded and popular view on the state of existence, its core arguments present an array of problems that detract from the credibility of its reality. Rene Descartes, who has been often called the Father of Western Philosophy (Wikipedia Descartes), entered the scene in Europe in the 17th century. Galileo’s imprisonment and the church’s monopoly on knowledge had put a damper on scientific learning throughout Europe. This, coupled with Aristotle’s outdated theories which held much weight in the domain of science and philosophies had spread a growing sense of skepticism throughout the world. Descartes’ Meditations were the first real response to this dangerous approach.