Friday, 17 September 2010

Farewell to the medieval mentality (Part 1 of 7)


In the 12th century, philosophy was simple and inflexible. A man was born into a certain family and inherited his father's trade. A peasant raised his children to follow into his footsteps. Perspectives were narrow and improvement unthinkable.

The fate of each person was to accomplish certain prescribed tasks and preserve tradition. A good part of a person's earnings was spent to maintain his position: to keep housing, attire, and diet according to his condition. Those who succeeded in improving their social status represented a very small minority.

The medieval mentality encompassed a mixture of short-term frenzy and long-term resignation. On feast days, banquets were held and wine consumed, but during the rest of the year, passive acceptance was the rule. Silent suffering was viewed as a sign of wisdom.

To be continued in Part 2

[Text: http://johnvespasian.blogspot.com]

[Image by Samuel Negredo under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us]

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