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Liberalisim vs. Puritanism_Notes

Liberalisim vs. Puritanism_Notes - Intro state America was...

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Intro: state America was in – need for social system - introduce the ideas – talk about their origins , how they came into affect into America, what time period, how they are conflict and how they are similar Puritianism: Origin – Christianity – Europe – Winthrop Main idea The state The individual The communityi Puritanism was a one of our countries founding systems political and social thought and was parallel with the Christian commonwealth ideals. The Church of England’s Protestant Reformation led to the violent prosecution of non-Anglican churches. Theses violent prosecutions led these religious sects to America in search of a Puritan society where the practice of religion was free of prosecution. It was a new beginning, for the Puritan’s believe that God had chosen them to go to America to develop and control the uncultivated land to create a beacon for all mankind. (Kramnick Lecture 3) God and the Bible was the Puritan’s foundation, and upon this they built their whole theology, society and government. Their political ideology was based on the belief that government is necessary because of original sin; that since man is inherently evil; God gave him the system of government to restrain him from this evil. With this the Puritans reasoned that the function of government is to enforce conformity according to the laws of God. Puritanism advanced the state’s role in implementing God’s morals laws, while promoting the individuals direct relationship with God. The state was viewed as a strong moral force that enforced, motivated and coerced proper conduct in the eyes of God. It also endorsed communalistic ideals and civic virtue; they enforced strict community wide rules of personal behavior and violations were believed to be adverse to the entire population. John Winthrop embodies the Puritan ideology and endorses the puritan’s two political covenants with God; and individual pact to abide by his moral code and a collective political contract to carry out his work in Massachusetts. Winthrop divides the first convent into two types of liberty. The first liberty, natural liberty, is man’s ability to do good and evil but “the exercise and maintain of this liberty makes men grow more evil, be worse than brute beasts” (Winthrop 22). The inevitable evil of this liberty makes it incompatible with authority and for it must be restrained. Second, moral, which, “is the proper end and object of authority, and cannot subsist without it; and it is a liberty to that only which is good, just and honest” (Winthrop, p 22). This moral code is upheld by total submission to the authority of God through shirking one’s natural inclinations that may question his command.
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