Dark Ages
In the era known as the Dark Ages, as the Roman Empire was in rapid decline, education and learning became dominated by religious fanaticism. The disciples of this new movement, the Stoics, believed in the supreme importance of pure spirit over material existence and therefore shunned learning about the physical world as an end in itself. To them, the scientific Greek philosophy exemplified by Aristotle's work was too mechanistic, too embedded in physical reality. Instead, the musings of Plato held much greater relevance and were perfectly in tune with the new obsession with religious meaning.
Plato had taught an anthropocentric view of reality in which everything was created and carefully controlled by a supreme being who held the interests of humanity paramount. For Plato, the movements of the planets were there simply to enable the marking of time, and he viewed the cosmos as a living organism with a body, a soul and reason. He also saw numerical relevance and meaning in all natural processes, and because of this he placed great importance upon mathematics. However, he abhorred experimental science, which, according to one historian, he 'roundly condemned as either impious or a base mechanical art'.