My studies in the Christian faith quickly led me into medieval philosophy, of which I had read scarcely any after St Augustine (I am referring to the texts themselves—I had read the usual accounts in histories of philosophy) and I found its richness, wide-rangingness and ‘modernity’ a revelation. So much of it anticipated developments which I had supposed began later. In fact, I now realized, I had scarcely thought of medieval philosophers as philosophers at all, but rather as apologists and propagandists for the Christian religion. However, a great deal of medieval philosophy was not about religion at all, but about logic, conceptual analysis, psychology, mechanics, and a whole range of other topics. The chief reason for its present neglect is that so much of the science-oriented part of it, and also the technical logic, has been overtaken by subsequent developments; but a lot of it was first-rate thinking out of which those developments naturally grew. And some of the metaphysics I found deep in a way that may have been associated in the minds of its authors with their religious beliefs but was not, on analysis, logically dependent on those beliefs.
Bryan Magee (from Confessions of a Philosopher, 1997)
Click HERE to reach
the associated topic for this webpage.
For more topics click HERE.