Mankind can be conceived in interesting ways by analyzing the writings of John Smith and John Winthrop. As I read through John Smith‘s “A Description of New England” and John Winthrop’s “A Model of Christian Charity,” it became evident to me that the two readings had similar and different viewpoints of the essential nature of man. Throughout my paper, I will compare their similar beliefs of community and diversity of people and completely contrast their ideas of emphasis on religion and relationships with enemies.
Both authors stress a sense of community and diversity in order to survive in America. Smith could not think of anything to “be more pleasant, than planting and building a foundation for his posterity, got from the rude earth, by God’s blessing and his own industry, without prejudice to any” (Smith 114). This proves Smith believes everyone in the community should join together without showing any type of discrimination. Likewise, Winthrop declares we must have “before our eyes commission and community in the work, our community as members of the same body” (Winthrop 225). He basically wants the settlers to live and share their wealth as one joined community. Smith and Winthrop also agree that diversity needs to exist in each community. “Carpenters, masons, fishers, fowlers, gardeners, husbandmen, sawyers, smiths, spinsters, tailors, weavers, and such like” are the variety of men Smith found in America (Smith 117). All of these types of men contribute a part of their lives to their community. In the same way, Winthrop assumes God ordered “all these differences for the preservation and good of the whole” (Winthrop 21...
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...ospel. Both authors have totally opposing opinions on how an enemy should be treated in America.
Ideas of community and diversity of people are similar for Smith and Winthrop, but their emphasis on religion and relationships with enemies greatly differ. In other words, both authors feel a need for togetherness among various groups of people in order to start a successful life in America. But while Winthrop places more emphasis on God, Smith places more emphasis on having power over the enemy. This makes their views of man completely different when it comes to how religion has affected our lives and how we act toward one another. Like Winthrop, I believe that God is the basis of our life, and He has shown us the way to lead a productive life by loving our enemies. Without religion, America would not have become the civilized country that it is today.
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