Introduction, Part 1 to the Life & Works of
Our story has its being in the beginning of the Enlightenment, the Age of Reason, a time of our intellectual awakening. The Enlightenment began when the Dark Ages ended, a time when the minds of men were cowed by the great mystery of the universe and their minds, through ignorance, were ruled by fears. The Enlightenment was a time when man, stepping out of his shackles, began to use his rational facilities and pulled himself out of the medieval pits of mysticism and in the process shoved aside the state and church authorities of the day. It was a spontaneous and defused movement which fed upon itself and led to the great scientific discoveries from which we all benefit today.
Beliefs in natural law and universal order sprung up, which not only promoted scientific findings and advancements of a material nature, but which also gave a scientific approach to political and social issues. Thinkers expressed their thoughts in writing and read the thoughts of others, these brilliant lights of the Enlightenment included the likes of: Francis Bacon (1561-1626),
Jean Jacques Rousseau (1712-88),
David Hume (1711-76), and
Adam Smith (1723-1790).
One, foremost among their ranks, was John Locke (1632-1704) the life and works of whom we now proceed to briefly examine.1
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