During the Reformation Europe was consumed by both political and religious turmoil. Europe seemed to take stock of itself and reevaluated how it was acting in the world. There were changes within the Church and outside of it that corrected many of the abuses that had started in the High Middle Ages, and only grew during the Italian Renaissance. Many contend that this reform was instrumental in forming modern Europe and eliminating many of the bad practices of the period.
Currently, many have contended that the Islamic world needs a Reformation of its own that mirrors this period. Six years ago about this time the Pope Benedict weighed in on this issue in what has become a highly controversial speech. What do you think? Does the Islamic world need a Reformation like the one in Europe?
For reference, here is the Wikipedia article about on this topic.
I have always been struck by the paradox of the Renaissance in Italy.On one hand, there is an incredible achievement in art, literature, and architecture. On the other hand, there is incredible debauchery in the Roman Catholic Church and general disregard for many of the principles that Church was supposed to uphold (celibacy for example).
Today, I think we seem something similar. Look at the music industry. We have performers rapping or singing about subjects that if discussed in a normal conversation would get you in trouble, yet set it to music, and you have a hit single. You can see the same thing in pop culture, with stories of Lindsey Lohan, Miley Cyrus, Kim Kardashian, and Brittany Spears exploits making the news (and getting famous) for behaving badly.
This makes me wonder. Is there a connection between bad behavior and artistic genius? Do you have to be bad to be good?