The Effects of the Scientific Revolution on Philosophy

Topics: Scientific method, René Descartes, Epistemology Pages: 2 (773 words) Published: October 7, 2010
The effects of the Scientific Revolution on philosophy from 1550-1715 Zoe Macfarlane 11/15/09 7th

The Scientific Revolution changed Europe in many different aspects. Improvements in science are obviously the most commonly recognized. Newton, Galileo, Copernicus, and other scientists at the time permanently changed science, which at the time was based on religion. These scientists used proven facts to support their laws and theories. However, for some reason, people tend to forget the major impact the revolution had on philosophical thought. Prior to the Revolution much of philosophy was based on religious ideas and concepts. The leading frontier in post scientific revolution philosophical thought was Rene Descartes. Descartes laid the foundation of applying science to philosophy. Francis Bacon also applied newfound ideas from science to social philosophy. However, there was still some skepticism with the applications from the revolution. Blaise Pascal believed science could only explain so much, and people were already relying too heavily on it. The Scientific Revolution changed Europe’s philosophical thought by basing philosophy on thought and reason as opposed to religion and God. Francis Bacon was the first to apply the new discoveries in science to society and life. Although Bacon wasn’t a scientist, he was a leading advocate on the great potential of applying science to society. He never had a philosophy, but he wrote about how to create a philosophy. Bacon believed a philosopher should use inductive reasoning from facts to make laws. In 1627, the year after he died, his book New Atlantis was published. In the book, Bacon described and utopian society where science saved humanity. Research scientists would be the most important and respected people in society and would have government support to discover as much information on the physical world. Bacon’s ideas of research being a collective enterprise influenced many later scientists. The first...
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