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The Age of Enlightenment changed the Western world in significant ways that we feel to this day. It might not always be obvious, but a rational, intellectual, scientific approach that is considered by many to be normal today has a lot to do with this movement in Europe, and later, North America, that occurred in the 17th and 18th centuries.
“Particular thinkers began to emphasize the importance of science and reason rather than religion and tradition” (Cambridge Dictionary), and individual thought was empowered. But turning to material reasoning and the physical senses as the foundations for determining reality resulted (and continues to result) in moral aspects of man’s spiritual nature (such as hope and faith) being belittled, ridiculed, and sidelined.
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Photograph by Gwen P. Lynn