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Christianity is the largest religious group in the world. The teaching of this religion is based on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. He was born in Judea at the beginning of the first century. He taught and did numerous miracles during his time, wandering to different places to solve people’s physical and spiritual needs. He rubbed the rulers the wrong way when he openly discredited their religious hypocrisy. He criticized them as only having the form of religion but still oppressing the poor. He also told everyone that he had been sent by God whom he referred to as His father. This made then the Roman authorities arrest him and later crucify him. Christians believe that He rose from the dead and later ascended to heaven. His first disciples began to spread his teachings to various cities of Judea and all over the world.
The spread of Christianity has lead to a lot of changes throughout the history. The core principles of this religion have become the major pillars of human life in most parts of the world. Christians use the Bible as the main guide of their teachings. The New Testament constitutes books which majorly contain the life history and teachings of Jesus Christ. The scriptures were developed by the early church to guide in the teachings and belief in Jesus Christ. Most importantly, Christianity has been in the centre of finding solutions to human life. This has included science and technology.
Western Civilization is one of the major products of Christianity. This period was known as the Renaissance. It started from 1350 to around 1550. Those who lived in this period believed that they had to be more modernized than those who lived in the Middle ages. This was the period which marked the rebirth of the ancient culture that had been destroyed by the turmoil and the evil that had been experienced in the previous century. Renaissance began in the 14th century when many monks and other scholars started to study the works of Aristotle, Plato and other great ancient thinkers. Due to the little knowledge that existed on different works on art, culture and education, the interest went away (Caruso 1995).
A renewed interest in these matters arose by different scholars coming up to study and spread the knowledge. These people believed that there was a need for things to be better than how they had previously been. They saw themselves more modernized than in the past. To this effect, there arose a movement known as humanism. This movement helped in the establishment of Renaissance in most parts of Europe. Humanists believed in the importance of human beings in the world. Before humanism, there were the scholastics that based their studies on grammar and logic to understand better who God is. They were Christians who went ahead to institute Christian schools to spread this understanding.
Scholastics believed that Christians could only learn more about God from the Christian literature and not from the pagan writers. This pattern was the order in the middle ages and it characterized the beginning of the formal learning. However, the coming of humanism brought this system out of the Christian schools to the secular world. This was an important aspect in the development of many parts of the world as many palaces embraced this system of learning. It should be noted that the coming up of Renaissance led to the adoption of the belief to the self as the focal point rather than God. It emphasized the establishment of arts and culture. It brought the recognition of the part played by man in God’s creation.
The Christian principles that had been established became important guidelines in the Renaissance era. This era marked the coming up of Christian humanists like Desiderious Erasmus who was a Dutch Priest. He believed that humanism could be blended with religion. He emphasized that the best way that corruption and other social and spiritual ills could be defeated was by embracing education. Humanists became important people in the society as their works were needed by the elite of the society (Chadwick 1995).
During this period, there were great improvements in arts. The architecture and other forms of arts borrowed greatly from the educational mathematics that had been introduced in the Christian schools. The introduction of measurements made the artists make accurate artworks. For example, the Greek and Roman architecture was the first to be established, seen in their Gothic structures, domes and very well rounded arches. This is evidenced in their ancient harmonious buildings. This was the period when man discovered the ability to do more with God’s creation. Man made numerous inventions through a systematic and formal education that had been borrowed from the Christian schools.
Michelangelo, during this period contributed to the development of sculptures by relating the classical sculpture with the bible themes. The Roman art became a pillar into this study. The social aspect of life drastically changed through the education the humanists of this period offered. The way of life changed as different classes emerged in the society. The changes were evidenced on food, clothing and other events. Many scientific discoveries happened at this period by those elite had been educated. More goods and services became available due to the exchanges that took place.
In conclusion, the role of Christianity in the Renaissance period can never be underrated. The beginning of formal education began by the establishment of the Christian centers of learning. These were established to study religious materials. The coming of humanism greatly borrowed from this as it simply used the Christian system to liberally teach the secular world. Education later makes people aware of their abilities, something that leads to great discoveries that eventually leads to Western Civilization.