The transitions to a higher self of the human consciousness include two main historical transitions, Greek and Christian. The Greek transited from the mythical to the critical consciousness with the argument of philosophers such as Aristotle. The Christian transition is from that of a concept of rationality to an existential one by the aid of philosophers, like Augustine. Before Plato and Aristotle, the two main philosophers that paved the way for the expansion of the western world, the general community relied on myths to share stories of various moral values.
Plato introduces the concept of critical thinking. He uses the Socratic seminar to first understand [the] meaning, then to see whether or not [the] claim is true through digging into the subject and having a closer look. He ultimately transited from the telling of myths to using critical reasoning to express opinions of morality. Aristotle goes about critical reasoning by discussing virtue, habituation, and the End of Human Existence through a teleological means to end analysis. He assumes that man is a rational animal and everything has a purpose.
Man is naturally inclined to find happiness through reason. Reason itself is divine and consists of immortality, which results in moral excellence. He ties moral virtue, a habituated process, and intellectual virtue, which is taught through experience and time, together by making them relate to each other as if one can t exist without the other. Both philosophers agree that to miss [the] mark is the greatest sin to commit. As has been argued, the philosophers concepts had paved the way for the expansion of the Western consciousness as well as setting a standard for learning.
The Christian era transited from a critical frame of mind to an existential consciousness, meaning the free being, one that s purpose is to achieve happiness. Augustine further develops this argument by stating that man is free to choose between good and evil or emptiness. This leads to theodicy, the problem of evil, and then the love of God and the renunciation of evil. Through the love of God, one understands God through faith and reason and ultimately, achieves happiness and the good life in the City of God. He states that happiness in the City of Man is not true happiness but an illusion.
The fleshy pleasures must be avoided to bring enlightenment and the allowance into the City of God. He further states that man is carnally sinful, as Genesis concludes, and to learn the way of God is the only way to break from that cycle. Aquinas concept of natural law, or man s natural inclination, is man s renunciation of evil and the inclination to do good, based on a fundamental law of nature. His theory of thought and action helps define the Christian Ethical Paradigm, which impacts the differentiation of the Western consciousness in relation to subjectivity and meaning.
Subjectivity is the concept of man as a radically free agent in becoming. Meaning set in terms of the individual s use of the experience of guilt and suffering to overcome the sense of conscious powerlessness. The Greek and the Christian era set new standards for the human consciousness. This basis of the social norms advanced the expansion of theWestern consciousness. The Socratic seminar, evolved from the practice of story telling, later connected with Genesis, leading to the Christian Ethical Paradigm and in conclusion led to the transition of the human consciousness from the mythical to the critical and finally to the existential.