By Ben Domenech June 6, The ongoing argument over whether the Enlightenment is a good thing is hardly a new facet of American political life. Defenses of the Enlightenment have been written over and over in the past several decades, by various defenders of the liberal order and Western civilization. Here is an excellent essay on the topic from Walter Olson, writing two decades ago in the pages of Reason, that might as well have been written today.
Western understanding[ edit ] In the Western world the concept of enlightenment in a religious context acquired a romantic meaning. It has become synonymous with self-realization and the true selfwhich is being regarded as a substantial essence which is covered over by social conditioning.
As a matter of fact there are more resemblances with Romanticism than with the Enlightenment: Historical period of renewed interest in religion[ edit ] The equivalent term "awakening" has also been used in a Christian context,  namely the Great Awakeningsseveral periods of religious revival in American religious history.
Historians and theologians identify three or four waves of increased religious enthusiasm occurring between the early 18th century and the late 19th century. Each of these "Great Awakenings" was characterized by widespread revivals led by evangelical Protestant ministers, a sharp increase of interest in religion, a profound sense of conviction and redemption on the part of those affected, an increase in evangelical church membership, and the formation of new religious movements and denominations.
Divine illumination Another equivalent term is Illuminationismwhich was also used by Paul Demieville in his work The Mirror of the Mind, in which he made a distinction between "illumination subie" and "illumination graduelle". It is the oldest and most influential alternative to naturalism in the theory of mind and epistemology.
Augustine was an important proponent of Illuminationism, stating that everything we know is taught to us by God as He casts His light over the world, [web 3] saying that "The mind needs to be enlightened by light from outside itself, so that it can participate in truth, because it is not itself the nature of truth.
You will light my lamp, Lord,"  and "You hear nothing true from me which you have not first told me. Romanticism and transcendentalism[ edit ] See also: Buddhist modernismTranscendentalismand Perennial philosophy This romantic idea of enlightenment as insight into a timeless, transcendent reality has been popularized especially by D.
Religious experience A common reference in Western culture is the notion of "enlightenment experience". This notion can be traced back to William Jameswho used the term "religious experience" in his book, The Varieties of Religious Experience.
The notion of "religious experience" was used by Schleiermacher to defend religion against the growing scientific and secular critique.
It is fundamentally a variety of diverse sources such as Hindu texts like the Vedasthe Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita various religions, and German idealism.
Enlightenment in Buddhism The English term "enlightenment" has commonly been used to translate several Sanskrit, Pali, [web 10] Chinese and Japanese terms and concepts, especially bodhiprajnakenshosatori and buddhahood. Bodhi is a Theravada term.
It literally means "awakening" and "understanding". Someone who is awakened has gained insight into the workings of the mind which keeps us imprisoned in craving, suffering and rebirth[web 1] and has also gained insight into the way that leads to nirvanathe liberation of oneself from this imprisonment.
Prajna is a Mahayana term. It refers to insight into our true nature, which according to Madhyamaka is empty of a personal essence in the stream of experience. In Zenkensho means "seeing into one's true nature". According to the Tibetan Thubten Yeshe[web 11] enlightenment full awakening; buddhahood.
The ultimate goal of Buddhist practice, attained when all limitations have been removed from the mind and one's positive potential has been completely and perfectly realized.
It is a state characterized by infinite compassion, wisdom and skill. Advaita literally, non-duality is a system of thought where "Advaita" refers to the identity of the Self Atman and the Whole Brahman. Attaining this liberation takes a long preparation and training under the guidance of a guru.
The first person to explicitly consolidate the principles of Advaita Vedanta was Shankara Bhagavadpada while the first historical proponent was Gaudapadathe guru of Shankara's guru Govinda Bhagavatpada. Philosophical system[ edit ] Shankara systematized the works of preceding philosophers.
This style was adopted by all the later Vedanta schools.The goals of rational humanity were considered to be knowledge, freedom, and happiness. Read More on This Topic. resurrected reason as a tool of understanding but subordinated it to spiritual revelation and the revealed truths of Christianity.
The Enlightenment expired as the victim of its own excesses.
John Locke (—) John Locke was among the most famous philosophers and political theorists of the 17 th century. He is often regarded as the founder of a school of thought known as British Empiricism, and he made foundational contributions to modern theories of limited, liberal government.
Dear Twitpic Community - thank you for all the wonderful photos you have taken over the years. We have now placed Twitpic in an archived state. 1. Biography.
Bento (in Hebrew, Baruch; in Latin, Benedictus: all three names mean “blessed”) Spinoza was born in in Amsterdam. He was the middle son in a prominent family of moderate means in Amsterdam’s Portuguese-Jewish community.
The Dark Enlightenment – Part 1 The Dark Enlightenment – Part 2 The Dark Enlightenment – Part 3 The Dark Enlightenment – Part 4 The Dark Enlightenment – Part 4a The Dark Enlightenment – Part 4b The Dark Enlightenment – Part 4c The Dark Enlightenment – Part 4d The Dark Enlightenment – Part 4e The Dark Enlightenment – Part 4f(inal) Part 1: Neo-reactionaries head for the exit.
That story about the blockchain-based dating site gets better: its designer is an enlightened being.. I got this from Vinay Gupta’s wiki, which describes some of his thoughts and alphabetnyc.com reading Mastering The Core Teachings Of The Buddha, I’ve been looking at a bunch of this stuff, and it’s interesting how it does (or doesn’t) converge.