Humanism in Renaissance
Humanism in Renaissance was essentially not a break from with past. Rather, it was a revival of critical thinking and development of scholastic philosophical ideologies based on rationalism and empirical data. These were ideologies whose development begun during the ancient world but were suppressed during the Dark Ages which suppressed the use of literature as well as politics. The cultural suppression of the Dark Ages also included a ban on learning and empiricism and rational thinking. As a result the world was plunged into a knowledge and cultural darkness while superstition and dogmas especially those promoted by the church took centre stage. The idea of learning faced an eminent extinction while much of the literatures which originated from the ancient world were burned and destroyed by the church which viewed them as corrupt and evil.
However, during the Renaissance Era, many Italian, French and scholars drawn from around the world especially within Europe revived the old form of knowledge advancement in the 16th century. Therefore, the development of Renaissance Humanism was a rebirth and transformation of the ancient world ideologies which were almost lost during the cultural darkness of the Middle Ages. It simply transformed these ideologies and restored what was almost lost during the Dark Ages. Like in the ancient world, the new ideologies placed significance importance on human beings at individual and collective level. It promoted critical thinking through works of philosophy, literature and scientific research. These were easily promoted with inventions. While promoting the use of rhetoric and poetry, humanism also transformed the ancient world ideologies by laying emphasis on the student concept, morality, and history to institutionalize humanism and push for good qualities that defined humans.
In the world today, humanism plays a significant role in almost every sector of our societies. Humanism is critical research including ancient fields such as medicine which were the pillars of Renaissance. The need and use of empirical research data is increasingly becoming an integral part of social, political and economic development of our societies. Empiricism directly challenged the dogmas and superstition that were perpetuated during the Dark Ages by the church. To date, it is an ideology that is central to societal development.
The technological developments that have marked the modern world is the brain child of humanism which laid emphasis on humans collectively and as individuals. Humanism expanded the critical thinking of human beings, allowing them to think philosophical, critically and broadly at the societal level. This allows them to come up with technologies aimed at solving many of the societal challenges we face today. Therefore, technological advancements witnessed today are a manifestation of the key tenets of Renaissance humanism: promotion of literature, critical thinking, empiricism and philosophical evaluation.
Humanism is a central pillar of the modern learning fraternity. Promotion of philosophical ideologies is a common approach especially in law and philosophical studies where learners study ancient philosophies and critically think of the ways they can be applied in various real world scenarios. Philosophy is also an important within the judicial system. Teaching of rhetoric, grammar and literature is also very common in the modern world. It is a career option for many. Generally, like during the Renaissance Era, today’s scholars have reformed the ancient ideologies to align them with needs of the current generation.