TITLE

Minds Indifferent: Milton, Lord Brooke, and the Value of Adiaphora on the Eve of the English Civil War

AUTHOR(S)
Caldwell, Melissa M.
PUB. DATE
April 2007
SOURCE
Seventeenth Century;Spring2007, Vol. 22 Issue 1, p97
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
Between 1638 and 1642, writers engaged in religious debate centering on Episcopacy weighed the value of peace – whether it be the peace of religious toleration or forced conformity – against the value of an active pursuit of religious truth. Within this debate, adiaphora , or things indifferent to salvation, emerged as an undefined moral category which both offered and limited religious liberty. Though once intended to ease the “intolerable burdens” of religion, by 1642 adiaphora had become burdensome to the individual conscience. Rising pamphleteer John Milton and eminent parliamentarian Robert Greville, Lord Brooke defined the role of the active conscience against adiaphora as they steered between the moral absolutism and moral relativism that it could generate. The struggle for jurisdiction over things indifferent highlighted the extent to which the human mind was responsible for creating and codifying the language and value of moral law.
ACCESSION #
26774323

 

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