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A Short History of German Philosophy$
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Vittorio Hösle

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780691167190

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691167190.001.0001

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The Change in the Philosophical Situation Brought about by the Reformation: Paracelsus’s New Natural Philosophy and the “No” in Jakob Böhme’s God

The Change in the Philosophical Situation Brought about by the Reformation: Paracelsus’s New Natural Philosophy and the “No” in Jakob Böhme’s God

Chapter:
(p.29) 3 The Change in the Philosophical Situation Brought about by the Reformation: Paracelsus’s New Natural Philosophy and the “No” in Jakob Böhme’s God
Source:
A Short History of German Philosophy
Author(s):

Vittorio Hösle

, Steven Rendall
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691167190.003.0003

This chapter examines the thoughts of natural philosopher Theophrastus Bombastus of Hohenheim, called Paracelsus (1493–1541), and Jakob Böhme (1575–1624). Like most of the innovative ideas of the sixteenth century, Paracelsus's philosophical-scientific ideas belong to the time of fermentation between the collapse of Scholastic science and the emergence of the new science in the seventeenth century. The polemic against traditional medicine, especially the humoral pathology that derived from books rather than from direct experience, is conducted in a churlish manner reminiscent of Luther and with bombastic self-praise. Böhme is considered first epoch-making German philosopher of the modern period. He was a cobbler who had had experienced mystical visions and wanted to provide a deeper foundation for his traditional Lutheran piety (inspired by the Bible) through a philosophical account of the development of God, nature, and redemption through Christ.

Keywords:   German philosophy, German history, Theophrastus Bombastus of Hohenheim, Paracelsus, Jakob Böhme, Lutheranism, Luther, German philosophers

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