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Thread: The New Learning.

  1. #1
    MANICHAEAN MANICHAEAN's Avatar
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    The New Learning.

    The New Learning.

    The premise of this short piece, arises from the fact that throughout history, certain outstanding events have resulted in significant changes that have encompassed; society, attitudes and learning, shaking them to their very cores. I refer of course to the current ongoing covid pandemic, which continues to either disrupt or cancel out those norms which we had previously regarded as stable.

    Such a case in point had been what was referred to in Europe at the time of the fifteenth century as "The New Learning". Then, the world was passing through changes more momentous than any it had witnessed since the establishment of Christianity and the fall of the Roman Empire.

    Its global physical bounds were suddenly enlarged with the discoveries by such explorers as Columbus & Cabot. The sudden contact with new lands, new faiths, and new races of men quickened the slumbering intelligence of Europe into a strange curiosity.

    Elsewhere with the written word, the "Utopia" of More, in its wide range of speculation on every subject of human thought and action, tells us how roughly and utterly the narrowness and limitation of human life had been broken up.

    At the same time, the capture of Constantinople by the Turks, and the flight of Greek scholars to the shores of Italy, opened anew the science and literature of the old world at the very hour when the intellectual energy of the Middle Ages had sunk into exhaustion. The exiled Greek scholars were welcomed in Italy, and especially Florence; so long the home of freedom and art, which became the home of an intellectual revival. The poetry of Homer, the drama of Sophocles, the philosophy of Aristotle and of Plato woke again to life.

    It would be prudent to enquire whether, as we eventually emerge from the current pandemic, (whether it be in one year or ten), as to whether this will likewise awaken / create new thinking and learning.

    Since the grip of covid extended itself remorselessly from March 2020, inescapable elements of fatalism and realism have inculcated themselves into mankind is my own impression. Many of the physical pleasures like; travel, entertainment, and physical social contact had been put on hold. Many in lockdown struggled financially, logistically and emotionally. Others prospered in the freedom implicit in furlough working, and there was both more time to read and reflect inwardly on what was, or was not important.

    Perhaps the greatest unknown is whether a new type of literature will arise. One can only speculate as to what direction that might take.
    Last edited by MANICHAEAN; 08-28-2021 at 11:40 AM.

  2. #2
    The Wolf of Larsen WolfLarsen's Avatar
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    That was good. Everyone should read this.
    "...the ramblings of a narcissistic, self-obsessed, deranged mind."
    My poetry, plays, novels, & other stuff on Amazon:
    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=ntt_athr...or=Wolf Larsen

  3. #3
    MANICHAEAN MANICHAEAN's Avatar
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    Thank you Wolf. Appreciated.

  4. #4
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MANICHAEAN View Post
    The New Learning.

    The premise of this short piece, arises from the fact that throughout history, certain outstanding events have resulted in significant changes that have encompassed; society, attitudes and learning, shaking them to their very cores. I refer of course to the current ongoing covid pandemic, which continues to either disrupt or cancel out those norms which we had previously regarded as stable.

    Such a case in point had been what was referred to in Europe at the time of the fifteenth century as "The New Learning". Then, the world was passing through changes more momentous than any it had witnessed since the establishment of Christianity and the fall of the Roman Empire.

    Its global physical bounds were suddenly enlarged with the discoveries by such explorers as Columbus & Cabot. The sudden contact with new lands, new faiths, and new races of men quickened the slumbering intelligence of Europe into a strange curiosity.

    Elsewhere with the written word, the "Utopia" of More, in its wide range of speculation on every subject of human thought and action, tells us how roughly and utterly the narrowness and limitation of human life had been broken up.

    At the same time, the capture of Constantinople by the Turks, and the flight of Greek scholars to the shores of Italy, opened anew the science and literature of the old world at the very hour when the intellectual energy of the Middle Ages had sunk into exhaustion. The exiled Greek scholars were welcomed in Italy, and especially Florence; so long the home of freedom and art, which became the home of an intellectual revival. The poetry of Homer, the drama of Sophocles, the philosophy of Aristotle and of Plato woke again to life.

    It would be prudent to enquire whether, as we eventually emerge from the current pandemic, (whether it be in one year or ten), as to whether this will likewise awaken / create new thinking and learning.

    Since the grip of covid extended itself remorselessly from March 2020, inescapable elements of fatalism and realism have inculcated themselves into mankind is my own impression. Many of the physical pleasures like; travel, entertainment, and physical social contact had been put on hold. Many in lockdown struggled financially, logistically and emotionally. Others prospered in the freedom implicit in furlough working, and there was both more time to read and reflect inwardly on what was, or was not important.

    Perhaps the greatest unknown is whether a new type of literature will arise. One can only speculate as to what direction that might take.
    Thanks for opening this discussion, Mani.That´s a good theme for reflection. In this sense I think one of the great books of the Renaissance is The Don Quijote de la Mancha. The medieval beliefs and certainties have all broken down, one has new horizons but is moving now in a world where one may be betrayed by ones own perceptions.
    As for our present "new normal"? I think it is still taking shape. Mankind never behaved too friendly towards his own race. But how for example will these children grow up that have to cope with the fear that their best friends represent a danger to their lives?
    #Stay home as much as you can and stay well

  5. #5
    MANICHAEAN MANICHAEAN's Avatar
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    You hit the nail on the head with Don Quixote my friend. Another book was "The Plague" by Albert Camus, exploring the relative powerlessness of individuals to affect their destinies at the time of a pandemic outbreak in Oran, North Africa.

    As for the current roads ahead for Mankind, the real challenge is for those of younger years who had but tasted pre-pandemic norms. Hopes and aspirations are essential, but how does one adjust to: living with the continual existence of covid, adjusting to new variants, not to mention global warming, and lack of international leadership? Even something as basic as a doctors appointment is now on a virtual basis here in the UK.

    We are perhaps in danger of becoming fatalistic; the only defence being a belief in ones self and not begrudging a Christian Deity the suffering He was prepared to sustain Himself, nor even a death.

  6. #6
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    I envy you your faith, Mani!

    As to Covid-19 i think we are starting to win the round! But much greater challenges may arise in these apocaliptical times.
    #Stay home as much as you can and stay well

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