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

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

Thus, the divide in human thought regarding the individual and nature is not ***** clear as one might be tempted to assume. Particularly ***** the *****, as opposed to the early Middle Ages, there w***** a revivification in the interest shown *****wards the classical world, and learning which was part of a new respect for ***** individual and an acceptance ***** the natural sciences. For example, the early Christian philosopher Augustine wrote that although God had created ***** 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 ***** had laid down...investigation and debate about such matters was not encouraged in the early Middle Ages; ***** himself wrote, 'Seek not to understand that you may *****lieve, but believe ***** you ***** 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...Aquinas [claimed] that both were paths to a single truth: 'God exists'" (Kreis, 2000). Philosophy and reason in general were no longer seen as hostile to faith.

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


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