Patterns and Characteristics of Science in the Greek Age, Middle Ages, in Islam, Modern and Contemporary and their Differences and Similarities


1. Describe the features and characteristics of Greek science?

2. Describe the features and characteristics of medieval science?

3. Explain the characteristics and characteristics of science in Islam?

4. Describe the characteristics and characteristics of modern and contemporary science?

5. Explain the differences and similarities?



1. Ancient Greece is a historical place where a nation had civilization. Therefore, ancient Greece is synonymous with philosophy which is the mother of science. Meanwhile, philosophy in a simple sense has developed long before the classical Greek philosophers involved and developed it. Philosophy in their hands becomes something very valuable for the development of science in the next generation. It is like opening the door to various disciplines whose influence is felt today. According to Bertrand Russel, throughout history, nothing has been so astonishing or so difficult to explain than the sudden birth of civilization in Greece. Indeed, many elements of civilization existed for thousands of years in Egypt and Mesopotamia. However, certain elements were incomplete until later the Greeks perfected them. Over time, philosophy was used as the basis of Greek thought to explore science, so that it developed in the following generations. It is like opening the door to various disciplines whose influence is felt today. Therefore, the period of the development of Greek philosophy was the entrance to the new civilization of mankind. This era lasted from the 6th century BC to around the 6th century AD. This era uses an attitude of curiosity (an attitude that likes to investigate something critically), and does not accept experiences based on receptive attitudes. So that currently philosophy is growing rapidly. Greece reached the peak of its heyday or golden age. 

2. Philosophy is familiar to people living in mainland Europe. Since its introduction in Ancient Greece by the greatest empire, Rome. Even in ancient Greece, many philosophers were born. But behind it all, many philosophers do not agree with science that only rests on human reason. Therefore, the Middle Ages were born, which became the starting point for human civilization who understood and believed in the science of the heart. With considerable and significant influence from Christianity / Catholicism to the Roman Empire at that time. The Romans were preoccupied with matters of religion and belief despite all the problems that existed in the world and science. At that time only theologians could appear and present science. Scientists today are almost all theologians, so scientific activity is related to religious activities. In other words, scientific activities are directed at supporting religious truth. The motto applied to science in medieval times was ancilla theologiae (religious servants). Hence from the fall of the Western Roman Empire until about the tenth century, in Europe there was no activity in science that could be as great as ancient Greece.  

3.  In the Islamic perspective, all knowledge comes from Allah SWT which is known to humans through His revelations as stated in the Koran. As the main source of knowledge, the Qur'an has provided a lot of information and guidance on how humans acquire knowledge. Several verses of the Koran show that the Koran is used as a source of knowledge by using words, among others: ya 'qilun (thinking), and yudabbirun (paying attention). Basically there are 3 kinds of instructions in the Koran about how to obtain knowledge or truth, namely through the five senses, through reason, and through revelation. In the Koran, there are several verses that instruct people to use their common sense in seeking knowledge, namely by using words such as: qala (weigh), qadara (measure / provision), and others. These words imply that this knowledge can be obtained by observing everything that is the basis of thought, calculation and measurement. Apart from the weakness of the human senses, it is known that the senses have a strong ability to acquire knowledge. With the senses, observation and experimentation can be carried out. In the Koran, there is a scientific methodology that strengthens the existence of this knowledge, but the Koran also explains the limitations of the human senses as a means of obtaining correct knowledge. The Koran criticizes people who only rely on their common sense to get the truth, for example what is told in the Koran about the people of Prophet Moses who want to see God directly. The Koran also mentions the existence of a reality that cannot be observed with the senses, which indicates that the range of the senses is limited in reaching the truth (see Mehdi Ghulsyani, 2003). 

 4. The modern and contemporary scientific world has developed with the emergence of modern scientific branches. This development occurred because of the increasingly careful application of the empirical method and the more complete use of scientific tools. In fact, this development is also caused by the increasing flow of communication between scientists. This is more pronounced in the 1700s. After entering adulthood, these branches of knowledge broke away from philosophy, as occurs in physics. This separation was carried out first by biology, in the early nineteenth century (XIX century), then psychology, which was then followed by sociology, anthropology, economics, and politics. 

 5. Difference: The Greek era was like the opening of various scientific disciplines that eventually clashed with beliefs or religions in the middle ages, the difference is that scientific activity is now associated with religious activities. Likewise with knowledge in Islam which is based on the Koran and Hadith. Whatever the knowledge, it is permissible in Islam as long as it is useful and does not conflict with the two sources that guide Muslims. As for modern and contemporary times, science is increasingly complete with empirical methods that are not based on religion.

Despite having similarities, every time he wants to develop his mind and human abilities. Related to other needs, whether it's religion or something else. Each era has something in common to develop advanced civilizations in their respective times.


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