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Christianity: A Huge Factor in the Story of Western Progress The Victory of Reason vs. The Closing on the West - Research Paper Example

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Christianity: A Huge Factor in the Story of Western Progress Stark’s The Victory of Reason versus Freeman’s The Closing of the Western Mind [Course] [Professor] Christianity: A Huge Factor in the Story of Western Progress Stark’s The Victory of Reason versus Freeman’s The Closing of the Western Mind The Dark and Middle Ages - from the collapse of the Roman Empire (around 500 AD) up to the Renaissance Period (approximately1500 AD) - was an age of momentous progress in the Western intellect and culture…
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Christianity: A Huge Factor in the Story of Western Progress The Victory of Reason vs. The Closing on the West
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Download file to see previous pages However, the more recognizable material theory is that Christianity hindered progress in all the aforementioned aspects, as claimed by Charles Freeman’s The Closing of the Western Mind: The Rise of Faith and the Fall of Reason (Riggins). The two authors have completely opposite viewpoints concerning Christianity’s impact on the growth of Western culture and rational thinking. Freeman’s work is supported by reasonable academics, whereas Stark's attempt is similar to an "apologia", meaning a justification of own beliefs, particularly on the subject of theology. Both books showing different positions about the Christianity’s involvement to developing the Western society will likely strengthen the readers’ preconception on the issue (Gaviidae). ...
According to Freeman, an important defining moment in Western civilization occurred in the 4th and 5th centuries after the death of Christ, when the tradition of reason begun by the Greeks - Plato and his student Aristotle, was suppressed. The repression would take the West a millennium to recuperate, Freeman said. The tradition by Plato was not a substitute to rational thought but a subjection of every belief to the examination of reasonable argument. The Greek rational tradition was intentionally stifled by the Roman Church during the time of Constantine (Riggins). The reason behind the stifling was tinged with political interests. Emperor Constantine believed that by institutionalizing the state behind Christianity, he could turn it into a tool of mass annihilation and would eventually be a unifying strength against the empire during the time it was under threat from raiding assailants, and be a powerful arm of social control. Freeman concluded that the liberated belief and rational thought were defeated since the bishops acquired political supremacy (Gottlieb). The vulnerable religious and philosophical rationale of the Roman Empire ended in the 4th century when the Emperor Constantine made Christianity the executive religion of the empire. Freeman stated, this “orthodox” thought started the suppression of even the slightest form of free reason (Riggins).  Stark’s book contradicted Freeman’s. Stark’s stance was firm when he wrote that it was indeed Christianity that encouraged a cultural loyalty to reason that facilitated the rise of the West. The Medieval Christianity was primarily and possibly solely accountable for the big leap shaped by Western Civilization in the fields of philosophy, the arts, science, technology, and autonomy (Wolfe). ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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