The Christian Humanist Podcast, Episode #55: The Enlightenment 101

General Introduction
– Is Nathan a Quaker?
– What’s on the blog?
– How to read the Great Books on your own

Historicize! Historicize!
– Where did the Renaissance leave off?
– The rise of the monarch and the fall of the Church
– Five centers of the Enlightenment
– Fleeing nationality and sectarian questions

Generalize! Generalize!
– Whiggish history
– The Reformation and the Enlightenment
– How coffee created the modern world

– Reactions to the Medieval past
– Diminished Thomisms
– Empiricism and Rationalism
– Enlightenment thinkers as compartmentalizers
– The postmodern critique
– Blaming the Renaissance and the Reformation
– The need for change

Enlightenment Religion
– Calvin vs. Hume
– The major players
– Alchemy and heresy
– Scientifically credible religion
– Godwin’s (Other) Law
– Open hostility to institutional religion
– The birth of Religion and tolerance
– The Village Square

The Rise of Modern Science
– Francis Schaeffer’s compartmentalization
– Rationalist vs. empiricist science
– Science and politics
– Paleontology

Political Changes
– Locke’s contribution
– Where do rights come from?
– The French Revolution blows up
– Why Jefferson is boring
– Founding Fathers as popularizers
– Original Sin and Balance of Powers

Breaking the Mold
– Jonathan Edwards
– Emmanuel Swedenborg
– Blaise Pascal






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Descartes, Rene. Meditations on First Philosophy. Seattle: CreateSpace, 2009.

Diderot, Denis. The Nun. Trans. Leonard Tancock. New York: Penguin, 1974.

Edwards, Jonathan. The Sermons of Jonathan Edwards: A Reader. New Haven: Yale UP, 1999.

Franklin, Benjamin. The Autobiography and Other Writings. New York: Oxford UP, 2009.

Godwin, William. Caleb Williams. New York: Penguin, 2005.

Hazen, Craig James. The Village Enlightenment in America: Popular Religion and Science in the Nineteenth Century. Urbana-Champaign: U of Illinois P, 2000.

Hume, David. An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding. Seattle: CreateSpace, 2009.

Jefferson, Thomas. The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth: The Jefferson Bible. Seattle: CreateSpace, 2011.

—. Political Writings. Ed. Joyce Appleby and Terence Ball. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1999.

Johnson, Steven. The Invention of Air: A Story of Science, Faith, Revolution, and the Birth of America. New York: Riverhead, 2008.

Locke, John. Two Treatises of Government. Seattle: CreateSpace, 2010.

McEntyre, Alistair. After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory. South Bend, Ind.: U of Notre Dame P, 2007.

Newton, Isaac. Observations Upon the Prophecies of Daniel and the Apocalypse of St. John. Seattle: CreateSpace, 2011.

Paine, Thomas. The Age of Reason. Seattle: CreateSpace, 2011.

Pascal, Blaise. Pensées. Trans. W.F. Trotter. Oxford: Benediction, 2011.

Schaeffer, Francis. How Should We Then Live?: The Rise and Decline of Western Thought and Culture.

Smith, Adam. The Wealth of Nations. New York: Simon and Brown, 2011.

Spinoza, Baruch. Trans. Edwin Curley. New York: Penguin, 2005.

Suarez, Francisco. Metaphysical Demonstration of the Existence of God. New York: St. Augustine’s, 2004.

Swedenborg, Emmanuel. Heaven and Its Wonders and Hell. Seattle: CreateSpace, 2011.

Thomas Aquinas. Summa Theologica. Trans. Fathers of the English Dominican Province. New York: Christian Classics, 1981. 5 volumes.

Voltaire. God and Human Beings. New York: Prometheus, 2010.


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