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Science Fiction Influenced Teachings of Enlightenment thinkers, Thomas Paine, Benjamin Franklin, and Nicolas de Condorcet

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Enlightenment thinkers, Thomas Paine, Benjamin Franklin, and Nicolas de Condorcet were influenced by teachings of the Scientific Revolution. Reason and logic were used to dissect what was good and valuable apart from what was tyrannical and unable to be proven from the old teachings of philosophers and religion. It was this process of reason and logic that gave these thinkers the confidence in man’s intelligence and potential to improve that showed up in their writings. According to our course textbook, “The new critical spirit (of questioning laws and rules formerly accepted as true without proof) led the thinkers of the Enlightenment to doubt the literal truth of the Bible and to dismiss miracles as incompatible with what…show more content…
He has no evidence. Therefore he will not believe. There is no scientific method to be had or done. Influences of the Scientific Revolution can also be found in the writings of Benjamin Franklin. In my opinion, Franklin continued to hold onto Puritan-guilt, but still questioned those teachings. Influences of the Scientific Revolution can be found in his parody, “A Witch Trial at Mount Holly.” In this parody witches are put on trial and are offered to prove their innocence with scientific experimentation. They had to be weighed against the bible and tossed in the river with feet and hands bound. They agreed to the experimentation as long as some of the accusers submitted to the same tests (CP 72). The parody showed the folly of these religious accusers as they weighed more than the Bible and most of them all floated instead of drowning. This story showed the folly in this dogma and doctrine. The influence also left Franklin with a strong desire to self-improvement and the improvement of mankind. This self-improvement became like a religion for him. He took the desire for moral perfection and turned it into what can be called a scientific experiment that he strived at daily. Franklin made a list of twelve virtues and their descriptions on how to attain them. The virtues were temperance, silence, order, resolution, frugality, industry, sincerity, justice, moderation,
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