General Characteristics of Medieval PhilosophyDecember 24, 2019
Medieval philosophy takes place as the development of a religious oriented or religious style of philosophy that began to become evident at the end of Ancient Philosophy in terms of classical Western philosophy.
At this point, it is a common feature of the historians of general Western philosophy that philosophy has become an instrument of religious discussions. The religion in question is Christianity.
Throughout the Middle Ages, the foundation of religious doctrines or providing a categorical basis for religious worldview has been a general view of philosophy. We see that Christian religion tends to provide an explanatory and ground its validity through philosophy. During this period, we see the debates on the axis of faith-knowledge-reason-god. The relationship between religion and philosophy shows conflicting situations during this period; some religious sages say that philosophy should be kept away from religion and Christianity, and others try to do so, while others say that philosophy is needed to establish faith and religion.
The collapse of the Western Roman Empire led to an interruption in cultural and intellectual developments in the chaotic environment it created. In this period, there is a marked departure from the intellectual developments that occurred in the Antiquity and the rejection of these developments. The relationship between religion and philosophy offers an intricate appearance in this environment; on the one hand, philosophy seems to have been lost in religion, while at the same time, this loss leads to the preservation and preservation of philosophy in religion.
While religious thought retained philosophy to ground itself, it provided a certain degree of protection of the philosophical thought formed in the Antiquity, even if it was not understood as love of knowledge and used to serve religious purposes. Philosophy did not completely lose its inherent features even though it was not clearly visible during this period. In this context, the philosophy of the Middle Ages continued with church teachings; but from the Renaissance onwards, he began to turn to scientific or critical thinking. Macit Gökberk considers this medieval philosophy as Antik Christianized Ancient Philosophy .. Another point to be mentioned is that this philosophy is static in contrast to the way it is seen in other periods.
Arab philosophy or Islamic philosophy in medieval philosophyshould also be noted. While such developments occurred in Western thought, Islamic philosophy was connected with Ancient philosophy, translated resources, and used these conceptual and methodological tools in internal Islam-specific debates. From the 1200s onwards, the sources in this area tend to the West, and most historians of philosophy say that this influence has an important role in accelerating the divide between religion and philosophy in the west. Similarly, Islamic philosophers tend to base the belief on the concepts taken from Ancient philosophy and to provide clarity through reason and logic. In this direction, it is seen that interpretation, commentary and logic or language analysis of sacred texts are put forward. This approach is in a sense the general characteristic of medieval philosophy.
Prepared by: Sociologist Ömer YILDIRIM
Source: Ömer YILDIRIM’s Personal Lecture Notes. Atatürk University Department of Sociology 1st Grade Giriş Introduction to Philosophy ”and 2nd, 3rd, 4th Grade Tarihi History of Philosophy” Lecture Notes (Ömer YILDIRIM); Open Education Philosophy Textbook