The Psychology Of Revolution

Overview

The present age is not merely an epoch of discovery; it is also a period of revision of the various elements of knowledge. Having recognised that there are no phenomena of which the first cause is still accessible, science has resumed the examination of her ancient certitudes, and has proved their fragility. To-day she sees her ancient principles vanishing one by one. Mechanics is losing its axioms, and matter, formerly the eternal substratum of the worlds, becomes a simple ...
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The Psychology of Revolution

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Overview

The present age is not merely an epoch of discovery; it is also a period of revision of the various elements of knowledge. Having recognised that there are no phenomena of which the first cause is still accessible, science has resumed the examination of her ancient certitudes, and has proved their fragility. To-day she sees her ancient principles vanishing one by one. Mechanics is losing its axioms, and matter, formerly the eternal substratum of the worlds, becomes a simple aggregate of ephemeral forces in transitory condensation.

Despite its conjectural side, by virtue of which it to some extent escapes the severest form of criticism, history has not been free from this universal revision. There is no longer a single one of its phases of which we can say that it is certainly known. What appeared to be definitely acquired is now once more put in question.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781595477606
  • Publisher: NuVision Publications
  • Publication date: 11/20/2007
  • Pages: 200
  • Sales rank: 940,934
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.46 (d)

Read an Excerpt


CHAPTER II RELIGIOUS REVOLUTIONS I. The importance of the study of Religious Revolutions in respect of the comprehension of the great Political Revolutions. A Portion of this work will be devoted to the French Revolution. It was full of acts of violence which naturally had their psychological causes. These exceptional events will always fill us with astonishment, and we even feel them to be inexplicable. They become comprehensible, however, if we consider that the French Revolution, constituting a new religion, was bound to obey the laws which condition the propagation of all beliefs. Its fury and its hecatombs will then become intelligible. In studying the history of a great religious revolution, that of the Reformation, we shall see that a number of psychological elements which figured therein were equally active during the French Revolution. In both we observe the insignificant bearing of the rational value of a belief upon its propagation, the inefficacy of persecution, the impossibility of tolerance between contrary beliefs, and the violence and the desperate struggles resulting from the conflict of different faiths. We also observe the exploitation of a belief by interests quite independent of that belief. Finally we see that it is impossible to modify the convictions of men without also modifying their existence. These phenomena verified, we shall see plainly why the gospel of the Revolution was propagated by the same methods as all the religious gospels, notably that of Calvin. It could not have been propagated otherwise. But although there are close analogies between the genesis of a religious revolution, such as the Reformation, and that of a great political revolutionlike our own, their remote consequences are very different, which explains the diffe...
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