What was the Enlightenment and how did it influence the rise of world revolutions?

Some revolutions are popular, other are agricultural, scientific, philosophical, or technical (like the Internet). These latter ones may be more powerful than an armed insurrection.

The world, and the human community that inhabits it, are subject to continuous change. Evolution is not a smooth curve however. It may progress slowly or by leaps and bounds. What happened since the discovery of America was an exalting epoch of leapfrogging changes. Philosophy, science, politics, economy, technology, military art… every doctrine or field of human reflection was completely transformed under a few simple axioms.

1) Man only needs himself to improve his lot.
2) Truth does not reside in the wisdom of the past but in the intelligence of the future.
3) There are natural laws governing the universe and humankind that take priority over whatever legislation governments or prophets may devise.

The assertion of such principle by Scientists (Newton…) Philosophers (Voltaire…), economists (Smith…), Politicians (Jefferson…), Military strategists (Vauban…), Technicians (Watt…) was Enlightenment.

The result of this new way of thinking, as it percolated from the highly educated few to the more numerous many who had the means and the ability to stir the masses, was the Age of Revolutions.

Over less than 100 years America (1776), France (1789) and the whole of Europe (1848) implemented those principles and turned the ancient hierarchies upside down.

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