Three Ages of Western History



Some of what we are going through in the terrible moral struggles of the Western world is due to the abandonment of the historic approaches to truth and culture. Though this is a simplistic summary, I think it is basically a true understanding. I was a student of the history of philosophy and a serious philosophy major in college and graduate school.

So this is my approach to what is happening.

Western Society as formed by the cultural elite throughout history, can be divided into three eras.

  1. The first is what I call the faith/reason period,

  2. second, the enlightenment empirical era, and finally

  3. the Irrational emotive preference era. The three are the basic understandings of the nature of Truth and how Truth is accessed.

The faith/reason era basically was dominant from the time of Constantine to the Reformation and included some of the reformers in the 17th century. In the faith/reason era there was a joining of Biblical revelation with reason based on Greek philosophy, first with the influence of Platonic philosophies (stemming from philosophers who followed Plato) to Aristotle and the philosophers that followed him. Knowledge and truth could be discovered both by natural reason its reflections and deductions about reality, or natural knowledge and by revelation.