A blupete Essay

Theories That Incapacitate Men, Part 5 to blupete's Essay
"On Philosophy"

You can believe God made you, and, thus, believe it is to Him you must turn; or you can believe we are determined by society, and to remake ourselves we must remake the men in whose society we find ourselves, or remove ourselves from that society. These are examples of theories that incapacitate men; these are examples of irrational theories. Men did indeed evolve the faculty to observe, to plan ahead, to think, and to judge for themselves; but only for themselves. This rational capacity, which is at the center of each man's life, is how man survives, day to day. It cannot, however, be applied to a group unless every member of the group sees something in the joint action which will advance the interests of that particular member. Now, it is difficult to impart the objects of a rational plan to another person, in any event; but, to impart a rational plan to a group of persons, is, indeed, a very difficult challenge. For you see, in normal circumstances, each person in this life, is in it for herself; and, will only subscribe to an imposing action were that person can see a real return to herself and her family. That there has to be something in it for a man to act, is in the nature of man: like it, or not.

Unlike the classical Greek period, when study or action proceeded without any, or very little concern about faith or dogmatism, the thinkers of the Medieval Ages had to be aware of the blind tenets of the times. The church, it must be remembered, in addition to spiritual power, had corporeal power.

Religious dissenters up to 1400, or so, were not much heard from -- not because there was no dissention; but, rather, that the dissenters had no means to get their views abroad. It was to be 1450 before moveable type, such as was used by Johannes Gutenberg was to be used for volume reproduction of the printed word.

The powerful Roman Catholic church came down, hard -- not only on those who professed novel religious ideas, but on any of those who gave, or who adopted a mechanical or scientific view of the world. You either subscribed to the dictated views of the church, immediately when called upon, or, you were branded a heretic and treated as such. One can hardly imagine the difficulties which both Galileo and Copernicus faced as they advanced their scientific theories.

The church philosophers of the time, - for example the French philosopher, René Descartes (1596-1650) - employed what we have come to call the deductive method of thinking. But for a new breed of thinkers, a different approach was being adopted.9 Fearless men were stating that for knowledge to be valid it must be the result of experience; the natural world we live in must be approached by building, on, thoroughly tested theories, theories that fit in with our real life experiences; these theories were built up by employing an induction method of thinking.


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