Study Notes: Medieval Philosophy

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Medieval philosophy 
In the ancient era questions relied on human reason = age of reason   
Questions asked in the middle ages one would consult god 
 What is God ?
Must be omnipotent = all powerful 
Must be omniscient = all knowing 
Must be omnibenevolent = all good 
Eternal = not in space/time 
Infinite = unlimited 
God is transcendent = above all 
Theism = god is involved and cares 
Monotheism = 1 god < this is the only religion in the middle ages  Polytheism = multiple gods < there were arguments in the middle ages to support this  Atheism = no gods 
Agnosticism = I don't know (suspend judgment) 
Deism = god exists but doesn't care (ant farm analogy we are the ants god is the owner of the ant farm)   
Augustine (354-430 AD) Augustine of Hippo
Up until Augustine, Christianity worked on faith and faith alone because most people were illiterate  Augustine brings reason back into the equation "faith is important but we can use reason to support our faith"  Reason supports faith, Faith supports reason

Mom was a Christian, Dad was a pagan 
Raised by his mother and loved and influenced by Christianity   Women was his weakness, Loved women had several illegitimate children  Was a terrible Christian because he slept around so much 
Augustine believed Christianity was riddled with far too many problems !! His thoughts on Christianity:
He originally found the scriptures troublesome
How can God be all good…… and evil still exist?

In his search for an alternative to Christianity, Augustine turned to a religious sect known as Manichaeism, which promised to join Christ’s “true” teachings with classical wisdom. Augustine encountered Manichaean teaching and remained an adherent for nine years Taught that the world was dominated by 2 co-eternal and opposed entities one benevolent (Ormuzd: “light”)

one malevolent (Ahriman: “darkness”)
not Satan, Satan was once good
These two “realities” were responsible for bringing eternal strife and conflict to the world. Evil exists independently of the good God, who is powerless to stop it. A good god cannot kill evil god, An evil god cannot kill good god Manichaeism

1. the doctrines and practices of the dualistic religious system of Manes, a blending of Gnostic Christianity, Buddhism, Zoroastrianism, and other elements, especially doctrines of a cosmic conflict between forces of light and darkness, the darkness and evilness of matter, and the necessity for a sexual, vegetarian asceticism.  

2. any similar dualistic system, considered heretical by orthodox Christian standards  
Augustine became increasingly dissatisfied with the sect, Augustine was left confused In 384, Augustine went to Milan to teach. (slept with Women) His mother, Monica, and his son accompanied him.

Numerous significant experiences in Milan led up to Augustine’s conversion to Christianity, Began to study under Bishop Ambrose
Influences Augustine
taught and translated Plato (LIGHT BULB) 
Because of Plato's works Augustine was able to tie Faith and Reason  Platonism and Christianity are 1 in the same
Christianity could be reasonably defended and that many of the troubling scriptures could be interpreted allegorically the good = God
Forms = unchanging objects
2 world view = our world/real world
The Divided line = b/w worlds (Heaven)
The Allegory of the cave 
Plato's Theory of Forms is also called the Theory of Ideas
Imagine that you want to build a chair. First you're going to think of the kind of chair you want, Before that chair exists, the idea of the chair will exist first, you build the chair based on that idea it will be less perfect than the idea. It will be prone to wear and destruction; it might not even match up exactly to begin with. What's more, after the physical chair is long gone, the idea will still exist, It is perfect and immortal. This is how Plato saw all the world.

Everything we see...
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