Closeted scholiasts wrote esoteric treatises that no one read. These works were sort of like the incomprehensible “theory” articles of university humanities professors who are up for tenure.Medieval elites relied on massive walls and moats — sort of similar to what we see with the present-day gated estates of Malibu and Silicon Valley.The great architects of the late Middle Ages could design majestic cathedrals at places such as Chartres and Rouen. But debt, incompetence, and quarreling meant that their construction — unlike the earlier construction of the Parthenon — took centuries to complete. The blueprints and mock-ups for California high-speed rail are as grandiose as the plans of medieval Gothic churches. But the reality of ever completing the project will require a half-century of cost overruns, lawsuits, and continual higher fees and taxes.
However, the people of the Middle Ages had something we lace… faith and spirituality.
People living in medieval times believed in transcendence and a soul, and sought to keep alive culture until civilization returned. People living in modern times increasingly live for their appetites without worry about what follows — with little awareness of what has been lost and so not a clue about how to recapture it.