Erasmus, Desiderius (1466?-1536) - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

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Thought

Erasmus's ambiguous position in the religious struggles was probably the result of his peculiar nondogmatic point of view and his cautious attitude toward developments in human affairs. He claimed to advocate the "philosophy of Christ," in contrast with the various kinds of Scholastic theories put forth by the Thomists, the Scotists, the Ockhamites, and others. Their technical discussions about the nature of baptism, grace, and the freedom of the will left him entirely unmoved. Rather than take their arguments and analyses seriously and present refutations, Erasmus attempted to undermine the whole Scholastic approach with the force of his ridicule.

In place of the philosophical and theological systems of the time Erasmus set forth his "philosophy of Christ," to be arrived at by pious study rather than by disputations. This "philosophy" was supposed to represent the simple and essential message of Christianity in its spirit rather than...

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This section contains 2,577 words
(approx. 9 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Erasmus, Desiderius (1466?-1536) Encyclopedia Article
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Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Erasmus, Desiderius (1466?-1536) from Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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