The “Axial Age”

The “Axial Age,” a phrase coined by German philosopher, Karl Jaspers, (Jaspers, Axial Age, 2012) describes the period from 800 to 200 BC.  During this period, great changes were occurring all over the world. Individualism was beginning to stir in the global consciousness causing a tidal wave of new thinking. It would usher in a new sense of reality that would form the foundation for present day science, religion and philosophy. This process can be seen in historical Greece. Emerging from the Dark Ages, a terribly torturous period, followed by the classical period, (The History of Greece) Greece began to experience a blossoming, a springtime of renewal. This seasonal metaphor can be used to describe how historically, societies go through periods of decay where the winds of discord, war, collapse and disintegration are like the winter of the soul followed by a renewal, a rebirth. As in spring, all of a sudden, flowers bloom, un thought of possibilities begin to unfold and warmth brightens minds with new ideas.

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