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Humanism.

Term used in various ways with different emphases for philosophies that center on man. It usually designates a philos. and literary movement which began in It. in the 14th c. and permeated W culture. The movement originally centered on Gk. and Lat. classics but soon influenced concepts of freedom, religion, hist., science, and other areas. Christian humanism stresses the values of human culture but subordinates them to Christian faith. Devout humanism, traced to L. Lessius,* tried to mitigate harsh concepts of man resulting from teachings on original sin by emphasizing man's goodness. Secular humanism emphasizes one or more of man's intellectual, cultural, or soc. achievements to the exclusion of religion. New humanism is common to several contemporary movements with varying emphases; it deals with the human as distinguished from the impersonal and the human as distinguished from the inhuman (the 1st pertains to attempts to humanize life by refusing to make people into things and by liberating them for human potential; the 2d pertains to emphasis on humanization, i. e., on ethical awareness of human nature and its possibilities as distinguished from a merely empirical measurement of man).

See also Enlightenment, 2; Humanism, Sixteenth-Century German; Humanist Manifesto, A; Huxley, Sir Julian Sorell. Reformation, Lutheran, 3; Religious Humanism; Renaissance.


Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
©Concordia Publishing House, 2000, All rights Reserved. Reproduced with Permission

Internet Version Produced by
The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod


Original Editions ©Copyright 1954, 1975, 2000
Concordia Publishing House
All rights reserved.

Content Reproduced with Permission

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