The Rational-Scientific World-View after the Protestant Reformation

  • Ronald M. Glassman


The Catholic Church tried to squelch science – Galileo was threatened with death. The Protestant Reformation liberated science. Liebniz, Newton, and a thousand others began the scientific revolution that has totally altered the world. Science, not only creates new technology – like the airplane and internet, which astonish us, but science also creates a rational view of the world – when we look at the sky, we do not see heaven, we see stars, galaxies, solar systems, planets, supernovas, and more. This rational-scientific worldview, with its emphasis on the “laws of nature,” engenders a rational, lawful conception of human society. Legal-rational authority – constitutional law – replaces divine Kingships as the legitimacy structure of modern democratic societies. To be “lawful” is to be rational and law-abiding. This scientific, rational, lawful world orientation reinforces democracy. Of course, dictators fling us back into animal irrationality based on aggression, domination, and submission.

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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ronald M. Glassman
    • 1
  1. 1.NYU School of Professional StudiesStern College of Yeshiva UniversityNew YorkUSA

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