Essay - Changing Concepts of Nature and Individual Differences in the Late...


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Changing Concepts of Nature and individual Differences in the late Middle Ages

Explore the ways in which ***** humanities reflect changing concepts of nature and individual differences during the Late Middle *****. Select specific works to illustrate your view of the changes that have occurred and present explanation ***** how ***** why the ***** characterize the period. Make a connection ***** Ancient Egypt, ***** Greece and Ancient Rome and discuss the changes that are evident.

It would be too easy to generalize that the ancient Greeks and Romans saw ***** as 'good' and that early Christian medieval society did not. Greeks such as Hippocrates celebrated the need to care of the body, while Pla*****nists disdained the value of the material, bodily world in contrast to the heavenly sphere ***** ***** 'forms.' Roman Stoics stressed mastery of the ***** as a way of becoming more harmonious with the natural ***** and strove not to counteract humanity's innate sense ***** balance ***** nature but the Roman army mastered nature by constructing mighty aqueducts. **********, while ***** ascetics mortified their physical bodies, the ***** world could ***** be rejected entirely by Christians as God had created the *****, thus ***** world must be good, even if humanity was fallen. In fact, the stress upon physical relics that signified the miracles and presence of the saints in the material world were not unlike the religious significance given to ***** corporal body in Ancient Egypt. Of course, the body itself did ***** ascend ***** heaven ***** Christian belief, as it ***** according to the pagan, Egyptian belief system. However, the ***** upon creating beautiful tombs to enclose the physical remains ***** the dead is analogous to Egyptian attitudes.

*****, the divide in human thought regarding the individual and nature is not ***** clear as one might be tempted to assume. Particularly ***** the late, as opposed to the early Middle Ages, there was a revivification in the interest shown towards the classical *****, and learning which ***** part of a new respect for ***** ***** and an accept*****ce of the natural sciences. For example, the ***** Christian philosopher Augustine wrote that although God ***** created the universe "as nebulous matter, within which lay 'primal seeds'" ***** "grew and developed into the universe and its life *****ms, guided by the ***** laws that ***** had laid down...investigation and debate about ***** matters was not encouraged in ***** early Middle Ages; ***** himself wrote, 'Seek not to understand that you may *****lieve, ***** believe ***** you may understand'" (Waggoner, 1997). But later, Aqu*****as joined the two approaches ***** philosophy and *****ology ***** present a theory of the cosmos. "Reason was no longer conceived as the nemesis of Faith...Aquinas [claimed] that both were paths to a single truth: 'God exists'" (Kreis, 2000). Philosophy and reason in general were ***** longer seen as hostile to faith.

***** Late Middle Ages was characterized by interest in ana*****my, as is reflected ***** the more individuated re*****ations of the ***** form in

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