Christianity was important in founding the modern humanist movement. The discovery of the complete texts of Aristotle introduced in the west through Spain thought also continuing from Byzantine-Greek sources stimulated the Aristotelian method of logic. That was applied to Christian thought in the scholastic movement of the 12th century. Thomas Aquinas wrote the Summa Theologica with an Aristotelian method of proofs and arguments against culminating in a syllogistic conclusion or summae. A reaction against that approach by Petrarch and others whom preferred a neo-Platonic and Augustinian approach as being more relevant and central to human concern on Earth in their relationship to God.
The politics of late dark ages Europe in relation to the church and the relation of the church to the pope is fascinating reading. Going through ‘A History of the Christian Church’ by Williston Walker, Richard A. Norris, David W. Lotz and Robert T. Handy that was put together over a time period of about a century I learned many new insights regarding the complexity of the movements of people and nations between the 11th and 15th centuries.
Of course there was a papal tax on subjects in far-flung states of Europe as well as a schism between the eastern and western branches of the church during part of the era. Two Patriarchs of the five patriarchs of the Nicene period still existed as powerful individuals. It was not to be a reunified church again until the Turks were about to take Constantinople when the East sought military help that never arrived, yet that is another story.
In the west the papacy for various reasons became divided into three. That is three post existed simultaneously and all were fired or resigned under pressure of a general council of Bishops from all over early in the 1430s. The bishops organized themselves into nations of five groups eventually to make voting simpler thought they were from more countries than that. Not only was the church in need of reform, it required one leader subject to the general council instead of a monarch levying taxes. For much of European history during the dark ages a co-evolution of political and national formation occurred along a trialectical helix with the church. Germany or the Holy Roman Empire didn’t fare to well during this period ass the new pope appointed by the council of Constance became too powerful again-the plague had hit Europe. Other matters concerned the locals. Germans had to pay high taxes to the pope.
If the reformation was in part a tax revolt during an era when the Roman pontiff tended toward corruption as on prince among five Italian principalities contesting for land and power in a time when the prestige and power of the papacy declined (the Borgia popes were siring children and Pope Julius II was leading his army in battle), the pre-formation & renaissance was developing while vernacular transformation of everything including the Bible was proceeding.
Walker or Lotz wrote in the text mentioned above that the source of studia humanitatis was Petrarch. Interestingly Marsilio Ficino appointed by Cosimo de ‘Medici to lead the new Platonic Academy developed a ‘Platonic theology’ combining Christianity and neo-Platonism. I discovered that sympathetic concurrence for myself after reading the Enneads of Plotinus. Augustine was also a reader of neo-Platonism before becoming fully Christian.
Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, author of an ‘Oration on the Dignity of Man’ was also a member of the Platonic academy. Evidently many of the founders of the humanist renaissance were actually defending Christianity or renormalizing nit in relation to the Aristotelian school of scholasticism. Of course in recent decades many American scholars have taken the opposite viewpoint arguing that Aristotelianism and scholasticism- even Christianity were in opposition to an entirely secular renaissance providing a stimulus to science. Maybe Roger Bacon was considered a necromancer in his time for being a little eccentric in his experiments yet that was just the average upper-crust Brit for ya. Science developed contemporarily with the rest of the liberal arts or studia humanitatis though one might find some differences in the school curriculum of the first Universities of Europe in Paris and Oxford etc. that did have some Aristotelian subjects. That over time would split off from the applied secular sort of learning. Scientists have argued about the abstract reasoning of Aristotle’s method versus the applied hands-on approach of experimenters. One might point that out to the string and brane theorists who seem to have purely theoretical, almost Aristotelian math-based approaches to creating new scientific knowledge.
Poor historical method applied to contemporary politics can lead to judgments based on faulty logic. The Obama administration believes that the west can judge the Ukrainian situation impartially. That would be like expecting the KKK to fairly judge a civil dispute over land ownership between a negroe and a cracker in the late 19th century. One knows that the desire to take the valuables would prevail in favor of the west (if the negroe were Russians owning the Ukraine; he Obama administration, France, Italy and the Netherlands the western Crackers). The paradoxes of history are fascinating to observe.
The United States’s Obama administration is well known for being a leftist vanguard for an atheist homosexual movement in the greater globalist expansion post-cold war. The paradox in the Obama administration efforts to consolidate every last bit of formerly Russian Ukrainian land after the cold war for the benefit of the west is that Globalism is taking the west through British leadership in the Master-Blaster Thunder dome relationship of post-imperial elitism, and the movement is a kind of reverse chirility image to that of Trotsky’s international communist imperial tendency that were repressed by Stalin and that re-emerged with Nikita Khrushchev. That is one atheist, leftist administration pursuing globalism follows another. What can the Russians think of that?
It was the Christian moral guidance of the Reagan administration that had the charisma and desire to rid the world of nuclear weapons that coincided with the rise of Andropov’s protégé Mikhail Gorbachev to power in the final years of the Soviet Union that was an element of Christian grace enabling a peaceful transition to a post-Soviet Russia. Western leftist would of course attribute that entirely to President Gorbachev and deny that President Reagan’s appeal to President Gorbachev to ‘tear down this wall’ or conventional weapons build up had anything to do with it. The transition should have been one of subsequent non-exploitation of Russia. Traditional Russian lands such as the eastern Ukraine ought to have remained with Russia. Lands liberated from the Nazis yet not Russian should go independent. That was fairly simply and a premise that George Keenan would have agreed with.
The atheist, globalist movement toward a dehumanized, despiritualized west and a Ukraine given over to Chinese corporate farming (they signed a ten billion dollar farming deal) is a paradox. Russia would be flanked by the Chinese infrastructure and perhaps have the Crimea become another Panama Canal Zone run by the Chinese. The Chinese Communist party did not throw in the towel and trust the kindness of foes, the Soviet Union did and Russia is being made to suffer for that evident mistake in regard to the Eastern Ukraine and the Crimea.
One of the Russian’s major areas of food production is being usurped lost and its food and physical security threatened by globalists of insatiable greed seeking to devour. Ant that is done in the name of atheist, scientific elitism wherein human beings have no God-given inalienable rights. Instead humanity are managed as bits of flesh- phenomenalities under the supervision of concentrated wealth and Mengeles of advanced scientific inclination toward ethics of personal egoist utilitarianism. Science is not endangered, humanity is. Science will be around learning and inventing things forever unless its technological progeny extirpate all human life on Earth, the ecosphere or both.