Puritans and Enlightenment
England Wanted to get the church to actively live out the meaning of the New Testament Didn’t think the government should control the church Felt that the church was too focused on ceremony/liturgy *William Bradford led the first voyage of Puritans in order to build a new society patterned after the word of G-d and to get away from religious persecution *2 things Puritans were certain of: Humanity was damned for eternity because of the sins of Adam and Eve G-d sent his son Jesus to save a select few (the elect) If you were one that G-d had chosen to save, you could feel G-ad’s saving grace upon you If it came into you, you acted like a saint *Traits responsible for allowing the capitalistic Puritan society to succeed: self- reliance, temperance (restraint or moderation), simplicity ESSAY: religion, education, government- how the literature reflects these Education was vital because they felt the teachings of the Bible were relevant to their own lives- everyone had to be able to read it First college- Harvard College- originally to train ministers Government- the
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Puritans believed there was a covenant between G-d and the people- if the people followed the Bible, G-d would take care of them The people had to obey the laws and the government provided for them First compact- Mayflower Compact The Puritans believed that their lives reflected the will of G-d- looked at the events in their life as revealing the Lord’s will Most common form of written expression was diaries and Journals- reflected the role and workings of G-d in people’s lives Puritan Beliefs: 1. Human beings are sinful by nature. 2. Salvation belongs to the elect who can be identified by their virtue. 3. Hard work and worldly success are signs of G-ad’s grace. 4. Education is essential in order to read the word of G-d. 5. A person should be thrifty, modest, and simple. 6. Society should be ruled by covenants that parallel G-ad’s covenant with his people.
Page 12- characteristics of Puritan writing Rationalism- using reason to figure out answers Rationalists believed that G-ad’s gift to the people was reason- used to discover the truth of existence on their own Cotton Matter Represents a bridge between Puritanism and rationalism Minister who supported the Salem Witch Trials Also was interested in medicine Inoculation- smallpox epidemic Deism- belief that all people can discover truth through reason- 3 main beliefs The universe is orderly and good Perfectibility of every individual is possible through the use of reason G-d wants everyone to be happy- the best way to worship is to good for other people Masterpiece of the Age of Reason- Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin- main idea is the self-made American