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 chang*****g concepts of nature and ***** differences during the Late Middle Ages. Select specific works to illustrate your view of the changes that have occurred and present explanation of how ***** why the ***** characterize the period. Make a connection ***** Ancient Egypt, Ancient Greece and ***** Rome and discuss the ***** that are evident.

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

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

The Late Middle Ages was characterized by *****terest in anatomy, as is reflected ***** the more individuated representations ***** the human form in

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