Blog Post #2

1 Commentby   |  01.31.13  |  Student Posts

Scholasticism is one school of thought that has influenced contemporary thinking, which resulted from an attempt at synthesizing Aristotle’s philosophy with Christian theology.
Peter Abelard was a prominent proponent of this movement. Abelard believed that because God undeniably existed, all methods of inquiry would prove just that; therefore, Christians should not fear reason, logic, or scientific study of any kind. In his book, Sic et Non, Abelard presented a dialectic method. He penned many theological questions and included a variety of contradicting answers to these questions from well-known Christian theologians. Although this method was controversial for obvious reasons, he firmly believed it was a reliable way to arrive at truth. Abelard exposed inconsistencies within the Christian church, presuming that the Bible would consistently prevail.
His work paved the way for dialectic behavior therapy, which is a psychotherapy commonly used today to treat individuals with borderline personality disorders. His willingness to search for truth without fear of questioning the authority of the time can be seen today from universities to various social movements. Today the value of holding the experts accountable is easily understood. Additionally, Abelard helped to bridge the gap between realism and nominalism with his theory of conceptualism. He believed that universal essences did not exist. Instead, we form concepts of things such a beauty and pain that may summarize specific experiences, but exist apart from those experiences.
His scandalous sexual relationship with his 17 year old Heloise is a reminder that even the most rational of men are not above their own physical and emotional desires. This type of behavior continues more often than not on a daily basis. I do not believe that it makes his faith in God or his work in philosophy any less valid. It simply proves that he was human. We have made significant advancements in medicine, science, and technology; however, human lust and passion remain a constant in all societies today.

1 Comment

  1. Forrest Norman IV
    10:44 pm, 02.01.13

    Hey Page! Didn’t know you were in this class! Ironic that our honor roll would be a Psychology major as well. Anyways I think your focus on one man, Peter Abelard, though it is in depth and how his life is insightful to his ideas, limits the breadth of your focus. I feel you should have used his life as an example the further your point or to demonstrate the end result of the beliefs he propagated. Otherwise it was very solid.

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