Imatges de pÓgina

tury between William of Champeaux and Roscellinus. Scholastic realism and ecclesiastical centralization went together. The type of realism predominant in the twelfth century was Platonic-universalia ante rem -in which ideas are preëxistent. Down to the twelfth century only a part of Aristotle's logic was known. Then the inductive side of Aristotle's logic, his metaphysics, psychology, and physics, became known in translations. Hence in the thirteenth century we have the Aristotelian type of realism—universalia in re—in which the universals are real as formative elements within things. Aristotle's sway was at first opposed. Averroës, the famous Arabian philosopher of Spain, who was Aristotle's best interpreter, was for a long time regarded as the enemy of the Church. The transition from Platonic to Aristotelian realism began in the conceptualism of Abelard (-1142). The formulation of Aristotelian realism was the immortal achievement of Thomas Aquinas in the thirteenth century. He used Aristotle's idea of development to relate and subordinate the entire world of nature to the supernatural world of the Church. His Summa Theologia was the result of this application of Aristotle's deductive logic to the sphere of Christian theology. It is still the orthodox text of Catholic theology.

The old Greco-Roman order represented wealth, property, the family, the state, knowledge, art, and science—it was naturalistic and stood upon the earth. Christianity introduced love of the individual, deeper social sympathy, the worth of the common soul. Some of the Church Fathers could find nothing in common between Hellenism, on the one hand, and Hebraism

and Christianity, on the other. They were pietists, separatists. But the Greek fathers Clement and Origen saw that the Christian will and faith apart from the Greek Logos, apart from knowledge and science, could not control, and therefore could not save, the world. The same tendency prevailed in Scholasticism. The universal authority of the Church, with its absolute dogmas, was interpreted in the light of human reason through the best knowledge they could get of Plato and Aristotle. The Christian will was brought into working adjustment with the world through the Greek intellect. This was the medieval way of christianizing the world of philosophy and science.

The early Christians, as a body, made no use of the intellectual achievements of Greek civilization-science, education, philosophy; the mysticism of early Christianity, as Paul himself tells us, was "foolishness" to the Greeks. But there are Hellenic elements even in the Gospels themselves; Gnosticism played a fundamental part in the evolution of early Christian doctrine, and the Fourth Gospel is the very incarnation of Greek philosophy. Instead, therefore, of continued opposition to science and knowledge as incarnated in Greek philosophy, the Christian spirit soon came to use the Greek intellect to interpret not only the world and society, but even its own message. This is the meaning of the Christian Fathers and of Scholasticism. As Moses came from the meditation of Midian to lead Israel out of Egypt; as Paul returned from the wilderness of Arabia to universalize the religion of the Jews, so the conscience of the Christian Church, interpreted by Greek philosophy, came from the contemplation of

the monastery to conquer the intellectual world. The mediæval Christian did not base the truths of Scholasticism on his own experience; the truth was incarnated in the Church and upheld by œcumenical councils. But Plato and Aristotle, as they were then understood, were used by the theologians of the Church to make intelligible to the Christian understanding the world which it was attempting to control and spiritualize. The reorganization of society demanded an authoritative truth for society as a whole; to provide this was the function of Scholasticism. Early Christianity emphasized revelation and faith; it admitted learning only as an aid to conduct. But the world needed the philosophy of Plato, the poetry of Vergil, the eloquence of Cicero. Accordingly Aquinas christianized Aristotle; Dante did the same for Vergil, and Raphael in his School of Athens gave to the Greek scholar and the Christian saint the same standing in the Christian imagination.

The Inner Ideal Compromises with the Family

We have seen that the world-denying spirit of early Christianity, when the coming of the Kingdom of God ceased to be an immediate expectation, began to appropriate the forms of the older Greek and Roman civilization, philosophy and law. Christianity became a world-conquering rather than a world-denying spirit. We have seen how the inner primitive Christian spirit appropriated the forms of Greek philosophy and Roman law, as instruments of control over the intellectual and political world. There remains to be con

sidered another institution, coming down from the older social régime-the institution of the family. It was the Greeks who contributed science and philosophy and art, and the Romans the institution of the state; it remained for the Germanic peoples to contribute the institution of the family. Among the Hebrews, Greeks, and Romans, the family was the very heart of social life; but from the Orient there came into later Greek and Roman thought ascetic tendencies at variance with the very existence of the family; the prevailing philosophy was individualistic and cosmopolitan; even the Hebrew could become an Essene. This Oriental element of asceticism in early Christianity looked upon celibacy as a higher form of life than marriage. There came to be a double standard of life; there was a higher, perfect life, and a lower standard for ordinary Christians. In upper Egypt, in the third and fourth centuries, asceticism, especially under the influence of St. Anthony, expressed itself in the solitary life of the hermit. Pachomius, about the middle of the fourth century, presided over colonies of hermits in Egypt, thus leading the way toward the evolution of the monastery. Pachomius thus represents the intermediate stage between the hermit and the monk. At Nicæa (325) universal celibacy of the clergy would have passed the council but for the eloquence of one voice. This shows that celibacy was morally demanded of the clergy in the fourth century. Monasticism as an institution distinguished the West from the East, and was largely the creation of Benedict in the sixth century. Benedict's work was embodied in his Rule of the Monastic Order which centered around manual work, clear

ing of forests, copying of manuscripts, regular hours for reading. In the eleventh century Gregory VII enforced celibacy on the clergy as a profession.

The monks were the greatest schoolmasters of the time. They copied and preserved the classics; they were the librarians and historians of Europe; they were the custodians of the old culture. The Bible could teach morals and religion, but the world needed grammar and logic and music and mathematics and philosophy. The classics-Homer, Plato, Cicerowere the source of these things. The monastery was the chief place in medieval Europe for scholarship and study. But the institution of monasticism, although it served as the depository of ancient culture, represented a development in the field of morals which was essentially Oriental in origin. Christianity needed a positive ideal of the family. She had learned organization from Rome and philosophy from Greece; where was she to learn the ethics of the family as a social institution? The answer is, from the Germanic people.

In early Greek thought Aphrodite represented the principle of sex and the origin of life; and the principle of fertility was the foundation of religion among the Canaanites, who transmitted their practices to their Hebrew conquerors. Prophetism, however, was violently opposed to these nature religions. Likewise the ethics of Christianity was in direct opposition to the animalism and naturalism of the pagan cult of Aphrodite. The old view which looked upon woman as an instrument of fertility in the service of the family or the state was no longer possible. The new ethics of personality, of the inner life, could no longer look

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