Enlightenment. It comes from the root word, enlighten which is defined as having greater knowledge or understanding. The era that followed after Reformation Era, I believe was named Enlightenment due to the fact that the society during that era became more knowledgeable as they possessed somewhat of a desire to learn and seek for information. The people slowly learnt modernism which means a set of ideas that was built during the Enlightenment.
From Reformation, the learned ones of the society had gained knowledge through the wonders of science and through the observation and information of science, the idea of technology was born. It was in the Enlightenment Era where technology had developed, for example the people of that time had learnt how to navigate themselves. From there, they traveled across the oceans to obtain more knowledge. They began to build locomotives and ships to transport themselves to places where they could acquire knowledge as well as for the benefit of their economy. From the technological advancement, it helped the society understand the concept of cause and effect or more known as causality.
Science and technology gave the society the idea that everything has a cause of being the way it was which later lead to the effect as the consequence. It had triggered them to believe that there was a reason to everything, for example, the reason to why trees are planted is due to the fact that it is the source of oxygen and in order to live, human breath in the oxygen. Their belief was similar to the saying that everything happens for a reason. The society knew that the world worked on set of natural laws. With reason, they were able to learn about laws and how it governed their lives. It was in this era when people began to stop believing in God as they were ignited by the possibility of being able to control their destiny.
Due to the birth of causality by science and technology, the society began to carry out their activities in an orderly fashion. Everything was done in an established manner as science experiments are known to be done in normal pattern procedures.
Another interesting concept which developed during Enlightenment was the concept of empirical evidence. This is defined as everything was based on observation or experiment as oppose to it being a theory. For instance, experiments are conducted in order to get an answer. Here, the cause and effect concept had a role in the emergence of the empirical evidence idea. Empiricism is split into two, firstly is the inductive logic and secondly, is the deductive logic.
Inductive logic means numerous ideas that are gathered to form a conclusion by giving it one general idea. For instance, should one be down with a flu, experiencing headaches, having warm body temperature, swollen tonsils and coughing, it is likely that he has fever. The conclusion that he has a fever came about after gather the symptoms which was the numerous ideas.
As for deductive logic, it means the opposite of the above as from a general idea, we divide many other small ideas from it. For example, the Newton’s Theory of Gravity. When the apple fell from the tree it gave birth to the idea of gravity and Newton taught the society to apply the concept of gravity to every other thing around them.
It was through this concept where the objective of truth came about. The objective of truth is a concept whereby an idea is not influenced by any feelings, opinions, or religion. It is more like the idea of something of which is clear, in the sense where one can touch, hold and feel that certain thing. However, if it is not obvious to the naked eye, then it is not real. This is why the people of this era had stopped being dependent on God as no one could see God or hear what God says.
During this era, modernism had brought about the 1 Idea of Good. This idea promoted autonomy and independence to be important amongst the society. It was an idea which ensure people to voice out their rights and take control of their rights so the leaders would not be able to dictate. This idea had allowed the society to pursue freedom and liberty to do what they wanted to do by knowing and understanding the law that governed them. They could decide their destiny by making the laws. It became a society which was self-governed. According to John
Hospers, a government is known to exceeded their function as the protector of individuals. Thus, this makes the society rule out the interference of a government. Locke’s classical liberalism means limited government interference which is similar to how it was during the Enlightenment.
Lastly, due to all the developing ideas on modernization during the Enlightenment, the 1st Idea of Freedom was born. From this idea of 1st Freedom, individualism arose. This idea means that one is independent in thought. Other than that, according to John Locke, a government that provides negative freedom means that it only provides protection to ensure their own freedom.
Therefore, the way the society’s mind grew during the Enlightenment was said to be somewhat of a modernization. The set of ideas that have developed have brought many changes, be it good or bad. However, in order to achieve something, it is customary that something else must be sacrificed. This era had triggered a few thinkers whom were not very pleased with modernization, and discussions of their impact on today’s world are essential for students of modern thinking.