The Age of Enlightenment is the world of ideas from the 18th century. It was an intellectual and philosophical movement in Europe that ended in 1789. It was also the “century of philosophy’. An intellectual is someone who thinks, does research, and reflects. It also means it proposes solutions for its problems and for the public figure. It had some influence on Descartes, Locke, Newton, Kant, Goethe, Voltaire, Rousseau, and Adam Smith. The Enlightenment could also be called ‘Age of Enlightenment for emphasizing reason, individualism, and skepticism. The Enlightenment presented a challenge to traditional religious views. They showed it was broad-based for days. They were typically supported by those who have equality and human dignity. They stood opposed to supernatural occurrences, superstition, intolerance, and bigotry. The Enlightenment died out in the early 19th century as Romanticism gained appeal.
The Scientific Revolution of the 17th century is closely associated with the Enlightenment, and Scientific thinking played a crucial role in the Enlightenment. They employed the scientific method to understand the world around them. There is no exact beginning date of the Enlightenment since it was such a broad movement. It was also developed gradually. Most historians place the beginning of the Enlightenment between the mid-17th century and the beginning of the 18th century. “The writings of intellectuals, like René Descartes, Baruch Spinoza, and Isaac Newton, were particularly important to the Enlightenment. The Enlightenment started in Europe and eventually spread to the United States, where it attracted followers like Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson.“
The Enlightenment was important to us because it gave us the basis of the American Revolution. The Revolution was a protest against English authority and a way to provide a blueprint for the organization of a democratic society party. The Enlightenment shifted of the western cultures was for the feudal and religious social structures. The government had individual rights, systems and more during this period. The scientific method models were tested for every aspect of human development.
They were only focused on the problem of the truth or law for rules of logic to any ethical truth situations. Some were useful but others were fails. Failure brought a single foundation of ethical judgment with long-lasting impact on their western culture. Ethics is definable but can be given the correct ethical decision for certain circumstance although they never cracked the code. A large part of their failure was either questioning or looking for answers related to the topic.
In the article how did the Enlightenment Impact Society says Enlightenment gave society the idea of having mankind could use reason. Then use that to discover the laws of the world and the rights of mankind. These ideals affected all factions of society, from politics to religion. Also, How did the Enlightenment Impact Society says “During the Enlightenment, philosophers challenged the previously held beliefs in superstition, God and the absolute authority to a monarch” explains the article. Then before the Enlightenment, people thought that God placed people in authority. They did not question the king’s or emperor’s rule. John Locke introduced the concept that people had the power to change the government if it did not fulfill its duties to the people. Rousseau also asserted that the government should make decisions based on what the people wanted. Baron de Montesquieu argued that no single person should have all the authority, and governments instead should divide into different branches. These ideas appealed to people who started to doubt the existence of God and question why a being so powerful placed inept and corrupt people in power.