November 5, 2015 - 12:00 am
Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor (born, Montreal, 1931) asks the question: why was it virtually impossible not to believe in God in 1500, while in the twenty-first century in so many ways the opposite is true? One reason is that prior to the Renaissance, which has been called “the mother of all revolutions,” human beings in the west lived in a natural world that seemed to testify to divine purpose and action. All that changed during the Renaissance/Reformation period which led to a condition that the poet Schiller (and later Max Weber) called “disenchantment.” The presentation will use art to illustrate how we came to be “disenchanted” — and of late years disenchanted with our own disenchantment. Using examples from the art of the medieval and Renaissance periods, the presentation will discuss how we moved from a world where fullness was considered beyond human life to a world where most people in the West are inclined to find fulness entirely within it.
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