Conflict and Reconciliation: Perspectives on Nicolas of Cusa

Conflict and Reconciliation: Perspectives on Nicolas of Cusa

Conflict and Reconciliation: Perspectives on Nicolas of Cusa

Conflict and Reconciliation: Perspectives on Nicolas of Cusa

Synopsis

This book deals with one of the main themes in the life and thinking of Nicholas of Cusa (1401-1464), the experience of conflict and the need to realise reconciliation and tolerance. The essays in this volume are discussing not only the various conflicts in which this important philosopher, theologian, mathematician and politician of the 15th century was involved, but also try to interpret the main speculative themes in his philosophical and theological works in the perspective of his historical experiences. As such, the book also delivers a contribution to a better understanding of intellectual, religious and cultural life of the 15th Century as an era of transition between late Middle Ages and Early Modernity. Contributors include: Inigo Bocken, Tilman Borsche, Gerald Christianson, Jean-Michel Counet, Jos Decorte (), Wilhelm Dupré, Stephan van Erp, Maarten J. F. M. Hoenen, William Hoye, Thomas Izbicki, Frans Maas, Markus Riedenauer, Nikolaus Staubach, and Anton G. Weiler.

Excerpt

Nicholas Cusanus reminds us in various passages in his work that the ‘truth cannot be found in dark corners’ but instead is ‘calling in all streets and alleyways’. the public nature of truth is doubtlessly one of the basic intuitions of this philosopher, theologian, mathematician and politician, whose 6oo birthday was remembered with great splendour in Deventer in 2001. Truth is public because, Cusanus believes, it is public property and at the same time no one's property. To the young it is young, to the old it is old and to a cow it is a cow, we find in De visione Dei. When Cusanus presumes that no man can legitimately claim truth for himself, this is anything but sceptical resignation to the limited human ability to say something about truth. Instead, it is just the opposite. Cusanus, marked by the many tragic experiences he had as a politician and diplomat, realised like none of his contemporaries that truth starts anew with every man. Each individual is a microcosmos, a ‘second god’, a ‘king in his own world’. This type of wording cannot be found in any medieval thinker. Only the recognition of this original orientation on the truth which manifests itself in every man's practical life, is the eventual guarantee of peace. in this respect Cusanus is undoubtedly a ‘modern’ philosopher. Yet at the same time he also differs radically from later modern thinkers. Whereas they emphasise the impossibility of finding a common intrinsic standard that will guarantee harmony and reconciliation, Cusanus sets out to discover the reason of this impossibility and finds it in the realisation of the public nature of truth, which is expressed in the realisation that everybody is in some way already involved in the truth through their thoughts or actions. This fundamental level is where Cusanus starts his quest for the cause of human and political conflicts, with which he was more familiar than most of his contemporaries, given his role as an important politician and keen observer.

The 15 century was indeed a time of many fundamental conflicts. the reformist conciliarists were fighting the defenders of the primacy . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.