From Theology And Philosophy To Psychology In The West

Understanding The Schism Between The Sacred And The Secular

  • Rachel Riddell University of Birmingham
Keywords: Aquinas, Bacon, Kant, Philosophy, Psychology, Locke, Empiricism, Humanism, Relativism


This study aims to explore the Western epistemological shift over the last five hundred years: a move from Christianity to secularism. To do this, we will address key philosophical, theological and psychological developments and their respective proponents in history. We will also note the consequences of these ideas on broader human society. We will approach this topic from a Biblical epistemological foundation, allowing our faith in God to guide our interpretation of these developments. This article is divided into five key sections, each addressing the concerns of different ages in history. We discover that relativism is what binds all of these ages and developments together.


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[13] Aquinas, Thomas. “Whether understanding is a gift of the Holy Ghost?” n.d. Summa Theologica. Christian Classics Ethereal Library. 17 December 2021.
[14] Leithart, “Medieval Theology”, 157.
[15] Ibid.
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[17] Leithart, “Medieval Theology”, 162.
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[22] Hoffecker, W. Andrew. “Enlightenment and Awakenings: The Beginning of Modern Culture Wars.” In Revolutions in Worldview, 242.
[23] Ibid, 242-243.
[24] Ibid, 243.
[25] Israel, J. I. (2002). Radical Enlightenment: Philosophy and the Making of Modernity 1650-1750, OUP Oxford.
[26] Hoffecker, “Enlightenment and Awakenings, 244.
[27] Cherbury, E. H. B. H. and M. H. Carré (1937). De Veritate, University of Bristol.
[28] Hoffecker, “Enlightenment and Awakenings, 244.
[29] Ephesians 4:18 “They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts”.
[30] Hoffecker, “Enlightenment and Awakenings, 245.
[31] Ibid.
[32] Lints, Richard. “The Age of Intellectual Iconoclasm: the Nineteenth Century Revolt against Theism.” In Revolutions in Worldview, 285.
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[34] Kant, Immanuel. Critique of Pure Reason. Ed. J. M. D. Meiklejohn. London: Henry G. Bohn, 1855.
[35] Lints, “The Age of Intellectual Iconoclasm, 284.
[36] Ibid, 284.
[37] Locke, John. “Second Treatise of Government.” January 2005, 4. Project Gutenberg. 22 October 2021. .
[38] Lints, “The Age of Intellectual Iconoclasm”, 285.
[39] Ibid.
[40] Ibid, 294-295.
[41] Smith, How (Not) to Be Secular, 4.
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[45] Smith, How (Not) to Be Secular, 12.
[46] Ibid.
[47] Ibid, 3.
[48] Barraclough, Geoffrey. Who Am I? What Am I? Why Am I Here?: a Discussion About the Perception of Reality. Partridge Singapore, 2015.
[49] Smith, How (Not) to Be Secular, 14.
How to Cite
Riddell, R. (2022) “From Theology And Philosophy To Psychology In The West”, Theological Journal Kerugma, 5(1), pp. 1-14. doi: 10.33856/kerugma.v5i1.224.