Heisman’s suicide note, 3

Rupture: How Christ hijacked
the moral compass of the West

The English word “virtue” is derived from the Roman word virtus, meaning manliness or strength. Virtus derived from vir, meaning “man”. Virilis, an ancestor of the English word “virile”, is also derived from the Roman word for man.

From this Roman conception of virtue, was Jesus less than a man or more than a man? Did the spectacle of Jesus dying on a Roman cross exemplify virtus; manliness; strength; masterliness; forcefulness? Consistent with his valuation of turning the cheek, it would seem that Jesus exemplified utterly shamelessness and a total lack of the manly honor of the Romans.

Yet the fame of his humiliation on the cross did, in a sense, exemplify a perverse variety of virtus, for Jesus’s feminine, compassionate ethics have mastered and conquered the old pagan virtues of the gentiles. Jesus’s spiritual penis has penetrated, disseminated, and impregnated the West with his “virtuous” seed. And it is from that seed that “modernity” has sprouted.

Jesus combined the highest Roman virtue of dying honorably in battle with highest Jewish virtue of martyrdom and strength in persecution. This combination formed a psychic bridge between pagan and Jew, i.e. between ideal cruelty in war and ideal compassion in peace. This is one way in which Christianity became the evolutionary missing link between the more masculine ethos of the ancient pagan West and the more feminine ethos of the modern West.

The original Enlightenment notion of revolution reflects a quasi-creationist view of change that makes the sudden rupture between the moral assumptions of the ancient and modern world almost inexplicable. However, if we take a more gradualistic view of social change wherein modern egalitarianism evolved from what preceded it, then the origins of modern political assumptions become more explicable. The final moral-political rupture from the ancients became possible, in part, because Christianity acted as an incubator of modern values.

Christian notions of “virtue” were not an outright challenge to pagan Roman virtue by accident; these values were incompatible by design. To even use the Roman term “virtue” to describe Christian morality is an assertion of its victory over Rome. The success of the Christian perversion of the manliness of Roman “virtue” is exemplified by its redefinition as the chastity of a woman.

A general difference between ancient Greco-Roman virtue and modern virtue can be glimpsed through the ancient sculpture, the Dying Gaul. The sculpture portrays a wounded “barbarian”. Whereas moderns would tend to imitate Christ in feeling compassion for the defeated man, its original pagan cultural context suggests a different interpretation: the cruel defeat and conquest of the barbarian as the true, the good, and the beautiful.

The circumstances of the sculpture’s origins confirm the correctness of this interpretation. The Dying Gaul was commissioned by Attalus I of Pergamon in the third century AD to celebrate his triumph over the Celtic Galatians of Anatolia. Attalus was a Greek ally of Rome and the sculpture was only one part of a triumphal monument built at Pergamon. These aristocratic trophies were a glorification of the famous Greco-Roman ability to make their enemies die on the battlefield.

A Christian is supposed to view Christ on the cross as an individual being, rather than as a powerless peasant of the despised Jewish people. If one has faith in Jesus, then one “knows” that to interpret Jesus as the member of a racial-religious group is wrong and we “know” that this interpretation is wrong. How do we “know” this? Because we have inherited the Christianity victory over Rome in that ancient war for interpretation.

Liberalism continues the Christian paradigm by interpreting Homo sapiens as individuals, rather than members of groups such as racial groups. If it is wrong to assume Jesus can be understood on the basis of group membership, then the evolutionary connection between Christianity and modern liberalism becomes clearer. Jesus was a paradigmatic individual exception to group rules, and his example, universalized, profoundly influenced modern liberal emphasis on individual worth in contradistinction to assumptions of group membership.

Love killed honor. The values of honor and shame are appropriate for group moralities where the group is valued over “the individual”. Crucially, such a morality is inconceivable without a sense of group identity. Jesus’s morality became liberated from a specifically Jewish group identity. Once it dominated gentile morality, it also eroded kin and ethnic identity. The Christian war against honor moralities became so successful and traditional [that] its premodern origins were nearly forgotten along with the native pagan moralities it conquered.

Jesus’s values implicated the end of the hereditary world by living the logical consequences of denying the importance of his hereditary origins. This is a central premise underlying the entire modern rupture with the ancient world: breaking the import of hereditary origins in favor of individual valuations of humans. In escaping the consequences of a birth that, in his world, was the most ignoble possible, Jesus initiated the gentile West’s rupture with the ancient world.

The rupture between the ancient and the modern is the rupture between the rule of genes and the rule of memes. The difference between ancient and modern is the difference between the moral worlds of Homer and the Bible. It is the difference between Ulysses and Leopold Bloom.

On Nero’s persecution of the Christians, Tacitus wrote, “even for criminals who deserved extreme and exemplary punishment, there arose a feeling of compassion; for it was not, as it seemed, for the public good, but to glut one man’s cruelty, that they were being destroyed.” The modern morality of compassion begins with Christianity’s moral attack on the unholy Roman Empire. Christianity demoralized the pagan virtues that upheld crucifixion as a reasonable policy for upholding the public good.

If, as Carl Schmitt concluded, the political can be defined with the distinction between friend and enemy, then Jesus’s innovation was to define the political as enemy by loving the enemy, and thus destroying the basis of the distinctly political. The anarchy of love that Christianity spread was designed to make the Roman Empire impossible. The empire of love that Paul spread was subversive by design. It was as subversive as preaching hatred of the patriarchal family that was a miniature model for worldly empire.

Crossan and Reed found that those letters of Paul that are judged historically inauthentic are also the ones that carry the most inegalitarian message. It appears that their purpose was to “insist that Christian families were not at all socially subversive.” These texts “represent a first step in collating Christian and Roman household ethics.” For these historians the issue is “whether that pseudo-Pauline history and theology is in valid continuity with Paul himself or is, as we will argue, an attempt to sanitize a social subversive, to domesticate a dissident apostle, and to make Christianity and Rome safe for one another.”

What could be more ridiculous that the idea that Jesus’s attack on Roman values would not need some “modification” before making themselves at home in Rome? Jesus and Paul were heretics of mainstream or Pharisaic Judaism and rebels against Rome. Since the purity and integrity of the internal logic of Christianity is hostile to purely kin selective values, there is no way whatsoever that Christianity could survive as a mass religion without corrupting Jesus’s pure attitude towards the family. Jesus’s values subvert the kin selective basis of family values.

That subversion was part of the mechanism that swept Christianity into power over the old paganism, but it was impossible that Christianity maintain its hold without a thorough corruption of Jesus’s scandalous attacks on the family. If not this way, then another, but the long-term practical survival of Christianity required some serious spin doctoring against the notion that Jesus’s teachings are a menace to society.

These, then, are the two options: the pure ethics of Jesus must be perverted or obscured as models for the majority of people or Christianity will be considered a menace to society. The very fact that Christianity did succeed in achieving official “legitimacy” means its original subversive message was necessarily subverted. State-sanctioned Christianity is really a joke played upon on a dead man who never resurrected to speak on his own behalf.

Official Christianity was making Jesus safe for aristocracy; falsifying Jesus; subverting Jesus. Rome subverted his subversion. Jesus attempted to subvert them—and they subverted him. (Bastards!) Yet without this partial subversion of subversion, Christianity would never have taken the deep, mass hold that is its foundational strength.

This insight, that pure Christianity must be perverted in all societies that wish to preserve their kin selective family values, is a key to understanding the process of secularization. Secularization is, in part, the unsubverting of the evidence for Jesus’s original social program from its compromised reconciliation with Rome. The first truly major step towards unsubverting Rome’s subversion of Jesus’s message was the Protestant Reformation.

The Roman Catholic hierarchy contains elements of a last stand of the old Roman pagan virtue, a reminder that it had and has not been subdued completely. The Reformation begun by Martin Luther was directed, in part, against this last stand. While Luther partially continued the containment of Jesus by checking the advance of the idea that heaven should be sought on earth, this German also continued the work of the Jewish radical he worshiped in attacking the hierarchy of Rome.

Secularization is the unsubverting of Jesus’s message subverted by Christian practice. Modern liberal moral superiority over actual Christians is produced by unsubverting the subversion of Jesus’s message subverted by institutional Christianity. There is an interior logic to Jesus’s vision based on consistency or lack of hypocrisy. Liberal arguments only draw this out from its compromises with the actual social world. In this role, Protestantism was especially influential in emphasizing individual conscience over kinship-biological imperatives based on the model of the family.

The average secular liberal rejects Biblical stories as mythology without rejecting the compassion-oriented moral inheritance of the Bible as mythology. That people, still, after Nietzsche, tout these old, juvenile enlightenment critiques of Christianity would seem to be another refutation of the belief that a free and liberal society will inevitably lead to a progress in knowledge. The primitive enlightenment critique of Christianity as a superstition used as a form of social control usually fails to account that its “social control” originated as a weapon that helped to bring down the Goliath of Rome.

Still, at the beginning of the twenty-first century, this old enlightenment era castigation of Christianity for not being Christian endures without realization that this is actually the main technical mechanism of the secularization of Christian values. When one asks, what is secularization?, the attempt to criticize Christianity for its role in “oppression”, war, or other “immoral” behaviors stands at the forefront. Liberal moral superiority over actual Christians commonly stems from contrasting Christian ideals and Christian practice. This is what gives leftism in general and liberalism in particular its moral outrage.

Secularization arises as people make sense of Christian ideals in the face of its practice and even speculate as to how it might work in the real world. Enlightenment arguments for the rationalization of ethics occurred in the context of a Christian society in which the dormant premises of the Christian creed were subjected to rational scrutiny. To secularize Christianity is to follow Jesus in accusing God’s faithful believers of a nasty hypocrisy:

Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness. (Matt. 23:27-28)

To charge Christians with hypocrisy is to relish in the irony of Jesus’s biting charges of hypocrisy against the Pharisees. Jesus’s attempt to transcend the hypocrisies inherent in Mosaic law’s emphasis on outer behavior was one germinating mechanism that produced Christianity out of Judaism. The same general pattern generated modern liberalism out of Christianity. Just as Jesus criticized the Pharisees for worshipping the formal law rather than the spirit of the law, modern liberals criticize Christians for following religious formalities rather than the spirit of compassionate, liberal egalitarianism. It was precisely Christianity’s emphasis on the spirit that helps explain how the spirit of liberal compassion evolved out of the spirit of Christianity even if the letters of the laws are different.

To recognize hypocrisy is to recognize a contradiction between theory and action. The modern ideology of rights evolved, in part, through a critique of the contradictions of Christian theology and political action. Modern ideology evolved from Christian theology. Christian faith invented Christian hypocrites, and modern political secularism seized upon these contradictions that the Christian hypocrisy industry created. Resolving these moral contradictions through argument with Christians and political authorities is what led to the idea of a single, consistent standard for all human beings: political equality. The rational basis of the secularization process is this movement towards consistency of principle against self-contradiction (hypocrisy).

Modern ideas of political rights emerged out of a dialogue; a discourse; a dialectic in which Christianity framed the arguments of secularists, defining the domain upon which one could claim the moral high ground. The “arguments” of Christian theology circumscribed the moral parameters of acceptable public discourse, and hence, the nature of the counterarguments of “secular” ideology. Secular morality evolved by arguing rationally against the frame of reference provided by the old Christian Trojan Horse and this inevitably shaped the nature of the counter-arguments that followed. Christianity helped define the basic issues of secular humanism by accepting a belief in the moral worth of the meek of the world.

The Roman who conquered Jesus’s Jewish homeland could feel, in perfect conscience, that their conquest should confirm their greatness, not their guilt. Roman religion itself glorified Mars, the god of war. Pagan Roman religion did not automatically contradict the martial spirit—it helped confirm the martial spirit.

Chivalry, the code of honor that tempered and softened the warrior ethos of Christian Europe, is the evolutionary link between pagan virtue and modern virtue. Yet the imperial vigor of the Christian West was made, not by Christian religiosity, but by Christian hypocrisy. Christianity planted in its carriers a pregnant contradiction between Christian slave morality and Christian reality that was just waiting for the exposé of the “age of reason”. Christianity made the old European aristocracies “unjust” by dissolving the prehistoric and pagan assumptions of its existence.

Jesus himself contrasted his teachings with the ways of pagans:

You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. It will not be so among you; but whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be your slave; just as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many. (Matt 24:25-28)

To reverse the high political development of kin selection represented by Rome leads towards sociobiological primitivity; to an immature stage where human ontology is closest to a more primitive phylogeny; when humans are closest to our common evolutionary ancestors; when humans are biologically most equal to one another since genes and environment have not yet exacerbated differences.

Christianity reached a state of fruition called “modernity” when a kind of justice was reaped for the ancestral betrayal of a Christian’s pagan forefathers. The pagan values that genuinely supported an ancestral chain of sacrifice for their kin kind and the patriarchal kingdoms of this world were betrayed.

A war of generations broke Christianity from Judaism, and left wing humanism from Christianity. These are only peak points that matured from the gradual kneading of cultural dough; from change guided by visions of the moral high grounds in heaven or on earth. Out of a conflict between generations that Christianity helped leaven, the modern social idea of progress rose.

Darkening Age, 2


 
INTRODUCTION

Athens, AD 532

‘That all superstition of pagans and heathens should be annihilated is what God wants, God commands, God proclaims.’

— St Augustine

This was no time for a philosopher to be philosophical. ‘The tyrant’, as the philosophers put it, was in charge and had many alarming habits. In Damascius’s own time, houses were entered and searched for books and objects deemed unacceptable. If any were found they would be removed and burned in triumphant bonfires in town squares. Discussion of religious matters in public had been branded a ‘damnable audacity’ and forbidden by law. Anyone who made sacrifices to the old gods could, the law said, be executed. Across the empire, ancient and beautiful temples had been attacked, their roofs stripped, their treasures melted down, their statues smashed. To ensure that their rules were kept, the government started to employ spies, officials and informers to report back on what went on in the streets and marketplaces of cities and behind closed doors in private homes. As one influential Christian speaker put it, his congregation should hunt down sinners and drive them into the way of salvation as relentlessly as a hunter pursues his prey into nets.

The consequences of deviation from the rules could be severe and philosophy had become a dangerous pursuit. Damascius’s own brother had been arrested and tortured to make him reveal the names of other philosophers, but had, as Damascius recorded with pride, ‘received in silence and with fortitude the many blows of the rod that landed on his back’. Others in Damascius’ s circle of philosophers had been tortured; hung up by the wrists until they gave away the names of their fellow scholars. A fellow philosopher had, some years before, been flayed alive. Another had been beaten before a judge until the blood flowed down his back.

The savage ‘tyrant’ was Christianity. From almost the very first years that a Christian emperor had ruled in Rome in AD 312, liberties had begun to be eroded. And then, in AD 529, a final blow had fallen. It was decreed that all those who laboured ‘under the insanity of paganism’—in other words Damascius and his fellow philosophers—would be no longer allowed to teach. There was worse. It was also announced that anyone who had not yet been baptized was to come forward and make themselves known at the ‘holy churches’ immediately, or face exile. And if anyone allowed themselves to be baptized, then slipped back into their old pagan ways, they would be executed.

For Damascius and his fellow philosophers, this was the end. They could not worship their old gods. They could not earn any money. Above all, they could not now teach philosophy. The Academy, the greatest and most famous school in the ancient world—perhaps ever—a school that could trace its history back almost a millennium, closed.

It is impossible to imagine how painful the journey through Athens would have been. As they went, they would have walked through the same streets and squares where their heroes—Socrates, Plato, Aristotle—had once walked and worked and argued. They would have seen in them a thousand reminders that those celebrated times were gone. The temples of Athens were closed and crumbling and many of the brilliant statues that had once stood in them had been defaced or removed. Even the Acropolis had not escaped: its great statue of Athena had been torn down.

Little of what is covered by this book is well-known outside academic circles. Certainly it was not well-known by me when I grew up in Wales, the daughter of a former nun and a former monk. My childhood was, as you might expect, a fairly religious one. We went to church every Sunday; said grace before meals, and I said my prayers (or at any rate the list of requests which I considered to be the same thing) every night. When Catholic relatives arrived we play-acted not films but First Holy Communion and, at times, even actual communion…

As children, both had been taught by monks and nuns; and as a monk and a nun they had both taught. They believed as an article of faith that the Church that had enlightened their minds was what had enlightened, in distant history, the whole of Europe. It was the Church, they told me, that had kept alive the Latin and Greek of the classical world in the benighted Middle Ages, until it could be picked up again by the wider world in the Renaissance. And, in a way, my parents were right to believe this, for it is true. Monasteries did preserve a lot of classical knowledge.

But it is far from the whole truth. In fact, this appealing narrative has almost entirely obscured an earlier, less glorious story. For before it preserved, the Church destroyed.

In a spasm of destruction never seen before—and one that appalled many non-Christians watching it—during the fourth and fifth centuries, the Christian Church demolished, vandalized and melted down a simply staggering quantity of art. Classical statues were knocked from their plinths, defaced, defiled and torn limb from limb. Temples were razed to their foundations and burned to the ground. A temple widely considered to be the most magnificent in the entire empire was levelled.

Many of the Parthenon sculptures were attacked, faces were mutilated, hands and limbs were hacked off and gods were decapitated. Some of the finest statues on the whole building were almost certainly smashed off then ground into rubble that was then used to build churches.

Books—which were often stored in temples—suffered terribly. The remains of the greatest library in the ancient world, a library that had once held perhaps 700,000 volumes, were destroyed in this way by Christians. It was over a millennium before any other library would even come close to its holdings. Works by censured philosophers were forbidden and bonfires blazed across the empire as outlawed books went up in flames.

Fragment of a 5th-century scroll
showing the destruction of the Serapeum
by Pope Theophilus of Alexandria

The work of Democritus, one of the greatest Greek philosophers and the father of atomic theory, was entirely lost. Only one per cent of Latin literature survived the centuries. Ninety-nine per cent was lost.

The violent assaults of this period were not the preserve of cranks and eccentrics. Attacks against the monuments of the ‘mad’, ‘damnable’ and ‘insane’ pagans were encouraged and led by men at the very heart of the Catholic Church. The great St Augustine himself declared to a congregation in Carthage that ‘that all superstition of pagans and heathens should be annihilated is what God wants, God commands, God proclaims!’ St Martin, still one of the most popular French saints, rampaged across the Gaulish countryside levelling temples and dismaying locals as he went. In Egypt, St Theophilus razed one of the most beautiful buildings in the ancient world. In Italy, St Benedict overturned a shrine to Apollo. In Syria, ruthless bands of monks terrorized the countryside, smashing down statues and tearing the roofs from temples.

St John Chrysostom encouraged his congregations to spy on each other. Fervent Christians went into people’s houses and searched for books, statues and paintings that were considered demonic. This kind of obsessive attention was not cruelty. On the contrary: to restrain, to attack, to compel, even to beat a sinner was— if you turned them back to the path of righteousness—to save them. As Augustine, the master of the pious paradox put it: ‘Oh, merciful savagery.’

The results of all of this were shocking and, to non-Christians, terrifying. Townspeople rushed to watch as internationally famous temples were destroyed. Intellectuals looked on in despair as volumes of supposedly unchristian books—often in reality texts on the liberal arts—went up in flames. Art lovers watched in horror as some of the greatest sculptures in the ancient world were smashed by people too stupid to appreciate them—and certainly too stupid to recreate them.

Since then, and as I write, the Syrian civil war has left parts of Syria under the control of a new Islamic caliphate. In 2014, within certain areas of Syria, music was banned and books were burned. The British Foreign Office advised against all travel to the north of the Sinai Peninsula. In 2015, Islamic State militants started bulldozing the ancient Assyrian city of Nimrud, just south of Mosul in Iraq because it was ‘idolatrous’. Images went around the world showing Islamic militants toppling statues around three millennia old from their plinths, then taking hammers to them. ‘False idols’ must be destroyed. In Palmyra, the remnants of the great statue of Athena that had been carefully repaired by archaeologists, was attacked yet again. Once again, Athena was beheaded; once again, her arm was sheared off.

I have chosen Palmyra as a beginning, as it was in the east of the empire, in the mid-380s, that sporadic violence against the old gods and their temples escalated into something far more serious. But equally I could have chosen an attack on an earlier temple, or a later one. That is why it is a beginning, not the beginning. I have chosen Athens in the years around AD 529 as an ending—but again, I could equally have chosen a city further east whose inhabitants, when they failed to convert to Christianity, were massacred and their arms and legs cut off and strung up in the streets as a warning to others.

Linder quote

When the Catholic Church says men are above animals, what it is saying is that men are above biological law. But they’re not.

Christianity is the origin of the delusion that is liberalism.

Published in: on June 7, 2018 at 10:55 am  Comments (22)  

Kriminalgeschichte, 68

A 17th-century Calvinist print depicting Pelagius

The caption says:

Accurst Pelagius, with what false pretence
Durst thou excuse Man’s foul Concupiscence,
Or cry down Sin Originall, or that
The Love of GOD did Man predestinate.

 
The overthrow of Pelagius

Rather than the struggle against the Donatists, Augustine was internally motivated by the prolonged quarrel with Pelagius, who convincingly refuted his bleak complex of original sin, along with the mania of predestination and grace; the Council of Orange of the year 529 dogmatized it (partly literally) and the Council of Trent renewed it.

According to most sources, Pelagius was a Christian layman of British origin. From approximately the year 384, or sometime later, he imparted his teachings in Rome, enjoying great respect.

Interestingly, when he disembarked at Hippo in 410, Pelagius was in the retinue of Melania the Younger, her husband Valerius Pinianus and her mother Albina—that is, ‘perhaps the richest family in the Roman Empire’ (Wermelinger). The father of the Church, Augustine, had also intensified his contacts with this family for a short time. Indeed, he and other African bishops, Aurelius and Alypius, had convinced the billionaires not to squander their wealth with the poor, but to hand them over to the Catholic Church! The Church became heir to this gigantic wealth. Melania was even elevated to sanctity (her holiday: December 31). ‘How many inheritances the monks stole!’, writes Helvetius, ‘but they stole them for the Church, and the Church made saints of them’.

From Pelagius, a man of great talent, we have received numerous short treatises, whose authenticity is subject to controversy. However, there are at least three that seem authentic. The most important of his works, De natura, we know by the refutation of Augustine, De natura et gratia. Also the main theological work of Pelagius, De libero arbitrio has been transmitted to us, in several fragments, by his opponent, although his theory is often distorted in the course of the controversy.

Pelagius, impressive as a personality, was a convinced Christian; he wanted to stay within the Church and what he least wanted was a public dispute. He had many bishops on his side. He did not reject prayers or deny the help of grace, but rather defended the need for good works, as well as the need for free will, the liberum arbitrium. But for him there was no original sin: the fall of Adam was his own; not hereditary.

It was precisely his experience with the moral laziness of the Christians that had determined the position that Pelagius adopted, in which he also often included an intense social criticism tainted with religiosity, appealing to Christians to ‘feel the pains of others as if they were their own, and shed tears for the affliction of other human beings’.

But this was not, of course, a subject for the irritable Augustine; he, who did not see the human being, like Pelagius, as an isolated individual but devoured by a monstrous hereditary debt, the ‘original sin’, and considered humanity a massa peccati, fallen because of the snake, ‘an elusive animal, skilled on the sinuous roads’, fallen because of Eve, ‘the smaller part of the human couple’ because, like the other fathers of the Church, he despised the woman.

In strict justice, all mankind would be destined for hell. However, by a great mercy there would be at least a minority chosen for salvation, but the mass would be rejected ‘with all reason’.

There is God full of glory in the legitimacy of his revenge.

According to the doctor ecclesiae we are corrupted from Adam, since the original sin is transmitted through the reproductive process; in fact, the practice of the baptism of children to forgive sins already presupposes those in the infant. On the other hand, the salvation of humanity depends on the grace of God, the will has no ethical significance.

But in this way the human being becomes a puppet that is stirred in the threads of the Supreme: a machine with a soul that God guides as he wants and where he wants, to paradise or to eternal perdition. Why?

Why? Because he wanted. But why did he want it? ‘Man, who are you who want to talk to God?’

Augustine warned against Pelagius and launched, increasingly busier in the causa gratiae, his theory of predestination which Jesus does not announce and which he himself did not defend in his early days, for more than a decade and a half, until the year 427, when he published a dozen controversial writings against Pelagius.

St. Jerome, at odds with the Bishop of Jerusalem, then wrote a very wide-ranging polemic, the Dialogi contra Pelagianos, in which he defamed his adversary by calling him a habitual sinner, arrogant Pharisee, ‘greasy dog’, etc.: dialogues that Augustine extolled as a work of wonderful beauty and worthy of faith. In 416 the Pelagians set fire to the monasteries of Jerome, and his life was in grave danger.

Pope Zosimus was left out of play in a clever stratagem of Emperor Honorius, and in a letter addressed on April 30, 418 to Palladius, prefect praetorian of Italy, he ordered the expulsion of Pelagius and Caelestius from Rome—the harshest decree by the end of the Roman Empire. He also censured his ‘heresy’ as a public crime and sacrilege, with a special emphasis on the expulsion from Rome, where there were riots and violent disputes among the clergy. All the Pelagians were persecuted, their property was confiscated and they were exiled.

In the final phase of the conflict the young bishop Julian of Eclanum (in Benevento) became the great adversary of Augustine, who by age could have been a son: the authentic spokesman of the opposition, who often cornered the bellicose African through a frontal attack.

Julian was probably born in Apulia, at the bishop’s headquarters of his father Memor, who was a friend of Augustine. As a priest he married the daughter of a bishop, and Pope Innocent appointed him in 416 as bishop of Eclanum. Unlike most prelates, he had an excellent education, was very independent as a thinker and very sharp as a polemicist. He wrote for a ‘highly intellectual’ audience, while Augustine, who found it difficult to refute the ‘young man’, did so for the average clergy, who always constitute a majority.

Although he theologically subscribes the theory of grace, he does not see it as a counterpart of nature, which would also be a valuable gift of the Creator. He highlighted free will, attacked the Augustinian doctrine of original sin as Manichaean, fought the idea of inherited guilt, of a God who becomes a persecutor of newborns, who throws into eternal fire little children—the God of a crime ‘that can scarcely be imagined among the barbarians’ (Julian).

Along with the eighteen bishops who gathered around him, Julian was excommunicated in 418 by Zosimus and, like most of them, expelled from his position, he found refuge in the East. Augustine became more and more severe in his assertions about predestination, the division of humanity between the elect and the condemned. Already on his deathbed, he attacked Julian in an unfinished work.

______ 卐 ______

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Why Europeans must reject Christianity, 20

by Ferdinand Bardamu

 
The Christian apologetics of Prof. Kevin MacDonald

Sociobiological accounts of Western pathological altruism are based on inferences not supported by the available empirical evidence. For example, if the individualism of European societies is the result of evolutionary adaptation under ecologically adverse conditions, a similar tendency would be found among other ethno-racial groups that evolved in the same environment. However, Eastern Europeans and Northeast Asians evolved in the same North Eurasian and Circumpolar region but remain strongly ethnocentric and collectivist.

Those arguing in favor of a European genetic basis for pathological altruism face another serious problem: for thousands of years of recorded history, there isn’t a single instance of collectively suicidal behavior among Europeans until the Christianization of Rome in the 4th century. Why this is the case requires the following explanation.

Ancient ethical norms diverged considerably from modern ones. Pity was condemned as a vice; mercy was despised as a character flaw. Mercy was viewed as the antithesis of justice because no one deserved help that had not been earned. The rational man was typically expected to be callous towards the sufferings of the less fortunate. His philosophical training in the academies had shown him that mercy was an irrational and impulsive behavior whose proper antidote was self-restraint and stoic calm in the face of adversity. In the Roman world, clementia was reserved exclusively for the vanquished in battle or the guilty defendant at trial. Weaklings and the economically disadvantaged were beneath contempt.

Life in the ancient world was quite brutal by modern Western standards. The punishments meted out to criminals—blinding, burning with coals, branding with hot irons and mutilation—were exceedingly cruel and unusual. Public entertainment was noted for its brutality. Scratching, biting, eye gouging and mauling an opponent’s genitals were accepted as legitimate tactical maneuvers for boxers and wrestlers alike. In the naumachia, armies of convicts and POW’s were forced to fight each other to the death in naval vessels on man-made lakes. Gladiatorial combat remained immensely popular for centuries, until the monk Telemachus tried to separate two gladiators during a match in the Roman coliseum. He was promptly stoned to death by the mob for his efforts. Slavery was considered a non-issue in the ancient world. Aristotle rationalized the institution by dividing men into two classes: those by nature free, and therefore capable of assuming the responsibilities of citizenship, and those who were by nature slaves. A slave was defined as chattel property bereft of the capacity to reason. This meant that he could be sexually exploited, whipped, tortured and killed by his master without fear of legal reprisal.

Racism or, more accurately, “proto-racism” was more widespread and more accepted in the ancient world than in our politically correct modern Western “democracies.” As revealed by in-depth examination of classical literary sources, the Greeks were typically ethnocentric and xenophobic. They were given to frequent generalization, often negative, about rival ethnicities. The Greeks casually and openly discriminated against foreigners based on deeply ingrained proto-racial prejudices. Ethno-racial intermarriage, even among closely related Greek ethnic and tribal groups, was universally despised. It was even regarded as a root cause of physical and mental degeneration. The absence of terms like “racism,” “discrimination” and “prejudice” in the ancient world reveals that proto-racist attitudes were not generally condemned or seen as pathological.

Greek intellectual and biological superiority was determined by their intermediate geographical position between lazy, stupid northern Europeans and effeminate, pleasure-loving Asians. The Greeks were the best of men because they had been exposed to the right climate and occupied the right soil. The Greeks looked down upon foreigners, pejoratively referring to them as “barbarians.” This was an onomatopoeia derived from Hellenic mockery of unintelligible foreign speech. Barbarians were viewed as the natural inferiors of the civilized peoples of the Mediterranean basin. Prejudice was not only directed at foreigners. Significant interethnic rivalry also existed among fellow Greeks, as demonstrated by the history of the Peloponnesian Wars. Greek patriots despised their Roman conquerors, even referring to them contemptuously as barbarians. After the conquest of Macedonia, the Romans embraced the prejudices of their Greek subjects as their own.

How do contemporary sociobiological accounts of Western pathological altruism explain this?

It has been alleged that pathological altruism was always a deeply ingrained European character flaw. The Pythagorean communism of the 5th century BC is frequently mentioned as corroborating evidence, but these practices were reserved for the intellectual elite. Much the same could be said for Stoic cosmopolitanism, which bears no similarity to the deracinated cosmopolitanism of the modern West. In the Greek variant, the intellectual gains world citizenship by living in accord with the cosmic law of universal reason; in the Roman variant, the cosmopolis is identified with the Roman patria.

The Hellenistic empire of Alexander the Great is believed by some to have been established on a morally universalist foundation. These accusations have their basis in the rhetorical amplifications and literary embellishments of chroniclers who wrote long after the exploits of Alexander. The expansion of the Greek sphere of influence in Asia was romanticized by some as implying a new world order based on an imagined brotherhood of man. This is contradicted by the historical record. In actuality, Alexander and his generals promoted a policy of residential segregation along ethno-racial lines in the conquered territories, with Greek colonists on one side and natives on the other. In the Greek view, Hellenized Egyptians, Israelites, Syrians and Babylonians were racial foreigners who had successfully assimilated Greek culture; clearly then, cultural and linguistic Hellenization was not enough to make one “Greek.”

Ancestral lineage was an important component of ancient Greek identity. Herodotus observed that the Greeks saw themselves as a community “of one blood and of one tongue.” Caracalla’s extension of the franchise to Roman provincials in 212 AD was not an act of universalism per se, but occurred after centuries of Romanization. It was done for purposes of taxation and military recruitment. This imperial legislation, known as the Antonine Constitution, did not abolish ethnic distinction among Roman citizens.

The conventional sociobiological explanation of Prof. MacDonald and others is contradicted by the pervasive brutality and ethno-racial collectivism of ancient societies. Given Christianity’s role as an agent of Western decline, no explanation will be fully adequate until this is finally acknowledged and taken into consideration. Prof. MacDonald, in an essay for The Occidental Observer, “Christianity and the Ethnic Suicide of the West”, ignores this major obstacle to his own detriment, arguing that from a Western historical perspective, Christianity was a relatively benign influence. Despite MacDonald’s eminence as an authority on 20th century Jewish intellectual and political movements, his defense of Christianity reveals a superficial understanding of history, contemporary political theory and Christian theology.

Prof. MacDonald whitewashes Christianity throughout, denying that the religion has ever been “a root cause of Western decline.” He observes that Christianity was the religion of the West during the age of European exploration and colonization, but not once does he mention that Christianity was a spent force by the late Middle Ages, having undergone a serious and irreversible decline in power and influence. Prof. MacDonald does not mention that after 1400, Christendom was no longer unified because the legitimacy of medieval ecclesiastical authority had been shattered; first, by the rediscovery of classical science and philosophy, which shook the Christian worldview to its very foundations, and second, by the Protestant Reformation, which reduced the pope to the status of a mere figurehead.

This set the stage for the large-scale dissemination of atheism and agnosticism in the 20th century. Gutenberg’s invention of the printing press, combined with the spread of mass literacy, virtually ensured that the Christian church would never again control European intellectual life. If the late medieval church had retained the same ecclesiastical and political authority it had under Pope Innocent III, European colonization and exploration of the globe would have been virtually inconceivable. For these reasons, it is more historically accurate to situate European territorial expansion within the context of resurgent pagan epistemic values, i.e. empirical rationality, intellectual curiosity and the pursuit of scientific progress for its own sake, during the Renaissance and the Scientific Revolution.

It is argued that the decline of the West has co-occurred with the decline of Christianity as an established faith, but this is incorrect. The Renaissance and the Scientific Revolution, as well as exploration and colonization that occurred along with it, were only possible because of the collapse of ecclesiastical authority in the late medieval period. This eroded the Christian stranglehold on the spread of knowledge, replacing blind faith with the pagan epistemic values of classical antiquity. The recent decline of the modern West beginning in the 1960s has co-occurred with the growing influence of a neo-Christian ethic in the public sphere, just as the decline of the ancient world co-occurred with the triumph of Christianity over the forces of paganism.

Prof. MacDonald observes that Christians have not always been consistent moral universalists in practice, but this is a non-sequitur. Marxists have not always been consistently anti-racist or multiculturalist, given Stalin’s rabid anti-Semitism, aggressive policy of national Russification, and deportation of entire ethnic populations to Siberia, but this does not change the fact that anti-racism and multiculturalism are characteristic features of Marxist orthodoxy. Since when have the inconsistent practices of a few individuals ever mitigated or excused the destructive nature of an ideology completely at odds with the biological reality of human nature? Likewise, MacDonald’s non-sequitur does not affect the central importance of spiritual equality in the Christian belief-system. Historically, Christians were divided on whether spiritual equality entailed certain real-world implications or was of purely eschatological significance.

This hopelessly muddled line of argument revolves around a nebulous definition of “traditional” Christianity, a term either alluded to or directly mentioned throughout. If traditional Christianity is supposedly good for Europeans, how can it be universalist and ethnocentric at the same time, as in the case of American abolitionists and slave-owners? Or is traditional Christianity whatever form of Christianity MacDonald finds acceptable? If this is the case, what is the point he is trying to make here? Prof. MacDonald mentions that the patristic writers frequently criticized Jewry for being obsessed with biological descent. This placed them at odds with the multicultural and multiethnic ideology of the Christian religion. But how can the patristic writers, who systematically formulated the official dogmatic orthodoxy of the church, not be representative of “traditional” Christianity? Paradoxically, MacDonald acknowledges the ancient origin of the church’s race-mixing proclivities. If he believes that the patristic writers were corrupted by egalitarian principles at a very early date, he should at least provide evidence of theological subversion.

According to Prof. MacDonald, the secular left, which initiated the cultural revolution of the 1960s, is not Christian in inspiration. This statement is egregiously wrong, revealing a profound ignorance of the philosophies of liberalism and Marxism, especially in terms of their historical development. These belief-systems originated in a Christian theological context. The core ideas of liberalism, human rights and equality, have their genesis in the careful biblical exegesis of 17th and 18th century Christian political theorists. Marxism is deeply rooted in the fertile soil of the Christian tradition, especially in the speculative Protestant rationalism of Hegel. It also draws additional inspiration from the Reformed theological principles of Luther and the communist socio-economic practices of the primitive Christian church.

The hostility between the secular left and “traditional” Christianity is emphasized to further demonstrate the non-Christian origins of Western pathological altruism. However, his observation is completely irrelevant, as both traditional and secular Christianity are essentially rival denominations within the same Christian religious tradition. The mutual hostility that exists between the two is to be expected. Furthermore, it is foolhardy to maintain that traditional or mainline Christianity has been corrupted by the secular left; given the origins of liberalism and Marxism in Christian theology and biblical exegesis, it is more accurate to say that traditional Christianity has allowed itself to be corrupted by its own moral paradigms after taking them to their logical conclusion. The Christian theological basis of social and biological egalitarianism is merely the rediscovery and application of the original ethical teachings of Jesus and the primitive church.

Prof. MacDonald says the “contemporary zeitgeist of the left is not fundamentally Christian.” He fails to realize that the liberal-leftist ideas behind Third World immigration and state-sanctioned multiculturalism have deep roots in the Christian tradition. There is a common misunderstanding, no doubt propagated by Christian apologists, that one must embrace the supernatural claims of Christian religious dogma to be considered a Christian. This contention is not supported by contemporary scholarship. For example, Unitarians reject traditional Christian orthodoxy but remain well within the Christian fold. Neo-Christianity, like Unitarianism, is a thoroughly demythologized religion, properly defined as the application of New Testament-derived ethical injunctions to the management of contemporary social and economic relations. By this definition, Liberals and Marxists are no less Christian than your typical bible-thumping “holy roller.”

If Christianity is ultimately responsible for the destruction of Western civilization, asks MacDonald, why aren’t Middle Eastern Christians destroying their own societies by aggressively pushing the same universalist and ethno-masochistic agenda? In this case, the comparison is historically flawed. The medieval Islamic conquest of Byzantine North Africa and the Near East virtually guaranteed that Middle Eastern Christianity would follow a socio-historical trajectory differing significantly from the one followed by Latin Christianity. Up until quite recently, Middle Eastern Christians inhabited a medieval world no different from the one Europeans had lived in for centuries before the dawn of the Renaissance. Middle Eastern Christians never experienced any Reformation that allowed them to shake off the tyranny of ecclesiastical authority and wrestle with the real-world implications of spiritual equality.

Furthermore, none of the conditions for a Reformation ever existed in what remained of Middle Eastern Christendom. There was no humanist movement, which meant no dramatic increase in literacy or availability of printed material. There was no rediscovery of the patristic writers or of the ancient biblical manuscripts in the original languages. Access to the original source material would have made it easier for religious dissidents to challenge ecclesiastical authority and refute long-established medieval Christian dogma. In fact, Middle Eastern Christians were dhimmis, a persecuted jizya-paying religious minority in a larger Moslem world hostile to their very survival. Given the precariousness of their legal situation in the Ottoman empire, they had no time for the finer points of biblical exegesis or theological analysis.

Prof. MacDonald states, erroneously, that in Judaism there is no “tradition of universalist ethics or for empathy with suffering non-Jews.” He is obviously not familiar with the teachings of the Old Testament: “The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the LORD your God.” (Leviticus 19:34) Christianity is simply the radical universalization of Hebrew ethical concern for the plight of hapless foreigners living among them; as such, it is firmly embedded within the soil of 1st century Palestinian Judaism. Although Christianity has absorbed Greek philosophical ideas because of its wide dissemination in Europe, it is obviously not a European invention.

At this point, Prof. MacDonald asks: If the “moral universalism / idealism” that is destroying Sweden is due to Christianity, how does one explain “how people can lose every aspect of Christian ideology except the ethics”? To answer this question, let us inquire into the historical genesis of the Christian religion and the identity of its earliest followers.

Christianity originated in the yearning of Palestinian Jewry for social justice while having to patiently endure the tyranny of foreign rulers. Under these harsh conditions, Jewish beliefs in a messiah acquired an unprecedented sense of urgency, eventually assuming militant and apocalyptic overtones. This sense of urgency reached a crescendo in 1st century Palestine; self-proclaimed messiahs amassed armed bands of followers poised and ready to establish the son of David on the throne of Caesar, by force if necessary. This is the environment in which the Jesus myth originated, woven together from different strands of Jewish tradition in an atmosphere of deep-seated yearning for the coming advent of a messiah. This advent symbolized the end of Roman tyranny and the establishment of the kingdom of god on earth.

Christianity’s earliest followers were drawn from the refuse of the empire. Why? Because Christianity was the first mass movement in history to give concrete expression to the inner yearning of the people for freedom from oppression and hunger. What man has not sought to escape the oppression of his masters or the poverty of his surroundings? With the rise of Christianity, like the rise of Jewish Messianic belief, the inchoate yearnings of the mob for deliverance from oppression were replaced with a vision of a new social order that would inaugurate an age of universal justice and freedom. This new vision would lead to the establishment of a worldwide communist economic system that would forever solve world poverty and hunger. In the New Testament was found a blueprint for an ideal society that would inspire generations of social reformers and leftist revolutionaries.

For centuries, it was the only widely accessible document that demanded social justice for the poor and downtrodden and the only document to propose a practical solution to the problem of social inequality: the establishment of a socially egalitarian or communist society on earth. The religion of Christianity tapped into this deep-seated, age-old psychological yearning of the masses and, for the first time in history, gave it a coherent voice. This ensured the survival of ethical Christianity long after the decline of ecclesiastical orthodoxy in the late Middle Ages, allowing it to flourish, virtually unchallenged, in the ostensibly secular milieu of the modern 21st century Western “democracies.”

As a control mechanism, ethical Christianity was remarkably flexible. It could be used to justify any social arrangement, no matter how unjust or brutal. Its promise of “pie in the sky” had a remarkably pacifying effect on the illiterate serfs, who were expected to toil on the lord’s manor for their daily bread. Feudal landowners encouraged Christian religious instruction because it produced an easily controlled and manipulated peasantry. Vassals had it drummed into their heads from the moment of birth that servants must obey their masters. The church promised them life everlasting in paradise if they faithfully observed this requirement until death.

The great rarity of the peasant revolt against serfdom reveals the shrewd pragmatism of those who used religion as a means of safeguarding the public order. Punishment for original sin and the Pauline dualism between body and spirit, among other things, provided European rulers with additional convenient rationalization for the institution of serfdom. In the right hands, the ethical pronouncements of the New Testament could be used as an agent of revolutionary change, capable of stirring up mass revolt and potentially unleashing forces that could tear apart the “vast fabric of feudal subordination.” This was demonstrated by the Peasant Revolt of 1381, ignited by the fanatical communist-inspired sermons of the renegade priest John Ball.

The concept of human rights—Christian ethical injunctions in secularized form—illustrate in concrete fashion why the morality of the New Testament managed to survive long after the decline of Christian dogmatic orthodoxy. Rights dominate the field of political discourse because they are considered by egalitarian ideologues the most effective mechanism available for ensuring (a) the equal treatment of all persons and; (b) equal access to the basic goods deemed necessary for maximal human flourishing.

This practicality and effectiveness must be attributed to the ability of rights to fulfill the secret yearning of the common people, which is to ameliorate, as much as possible, the baneful effects of oppression and want. It achieves this by demolishing the traditional social and political distinctions once maintained between aristocracy and peasantry, placing all individuals on the same level playing field. The concept of rights has allowed the masses to closely realize their age-old utopian aspirations within a liberal egalitarian or socialist context. The concept’s great flexibility means that it can be interpreted to justify almost any entitlement. Even those who openly rejected the notion of rights, such as utilitarian philosopher Bentham, were unable to devise a more satisfactory mechanism that ensured equal treatment of all.

The Marxist tradition, emerging from under different historical circumstances, never fully decoupled Christian ethical teaching from traditional orthodoxy; instead, Marxist philosophical method necessitated an “inverted” Judeo-Christian eschatological and soteriological framework, largely because dialectical materialism is primarily an inversion of Hegel’s speculative Protestant rationalism.

In Hegelian Christianity, knowledge is substituted for faith. This eliminated the “mysteries” of Christian orthodoxy by making rational self-knowledge of god a possibility for all believers. The trinity as absolute mind, and therefore reason incarnate, means that Jesus of Nazareth was a teacher of rational morality, although his ethical system had been corrupted by patristic and medieval expositors. If “the rational is real and the real is rational,” as Hegel said, history is not only the progressive incarnation of god, but god is the historical process itself. The triadic structure of the natural world, including human self-consciousness, proves that the structure of objective reality is determined by the triune godhead of Christianity.

Hegel’s interpretation of Christianity gave Marx the raw material he needed to extract the “rational kernel” of scientific observation from “within the mystical shell” of Hegelian speculative rationalism. This liberated dialectical analysis from Hegel’s idealist mystification, allowing Marx to do what Hegel should have done, before succumbing to Christian theological reflection: construct a normative science, a Realwissenschaft, analyzing the socio-economic developments within capitalism that would unleash the forces of worldwide proletarian revolution.

The secularization of Christianity preserved the religion’s ethical component, while discarding all supernatural elements. This gave us modern liberalism. In contrast, Marx turned Hegel’s Protestant theological system upside down, a process of extraction resulting in the demystification of Hegelian Christianity. In Marxist philosophy, the inversion of dialectic removes the analytical tool—the “rational kernel”—from within its Christian idealist “shell.” This is then applied to the analysis of real-world phenomena within a thorough-going materialist framework, like the internal contradictions of capital accumulation in Marxist crisis theory.

Prof. MacDonald argues for a genetic basis for moral universalism in European populations, a difficult argument to make given the historical evidence indicating a total absence of pathological altruism in the ancient world before Christianization of the Roman empire. He mentions the systematic brainwashing of Europeans and the major role of Jewish political, academic and financial influence in the ethnocide of the West, but again forgets to mention that all these cultural forces rationalize European dispossession using political ideas like universal human rights and equality, the two fundamental pillars of secularized Christianity.

Prof. MacDonald’s attempt to exculpate Christianity of being “a root cause of Western decline” is easily refuted. In the final analysis, Christianity, at least in its organized form, is the single greatest enemy of Western civilization to have ever existed.

______ 卐 ______

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Why Europeans must reject Christianity, 19

by Ferdinand Bardamu

 
Most destructive force in European history? World’s most dangerous religion?

Among the great religions, only Christianity contains within its shell an unlimited capacity for self-destruction. Nihilism lies at the core of the Christian gospel; in pure form, the religion demands the total renunciation of all worldly attachment for the greater glory of the kingdom of god. Christianity is the negation of life because it sets goals that, when attained, lead to the annihilation of the individual. As far as Western survival is concerned, this can only mean one thing: civilizational collapse and ethnic suicide. This is exactly what happened during the Dark Ages, when Christians were at the apogee of their power and influence in Europe. This decline was reversed by courageous intellectuals who had rediscovered the glories of the ancient civilizations, using this past achievement as the basis for new achievements and discoveries.

Christianity is a dangerous religion. It maximizes the survival and reproduction of the genetically unfit at the expense of society’s more productive members. It promotes the mass invasion of the West by foreigners of low genetic quality, especially from the Third World. By lowering collective IQ, Christianity has accelerated Western civilizational decline.

Neo-Christianity, in the form of liberalism and cultural Marxism, has inherited the orthodox Christian high regard for Lebensunwertes Leben. Christians and neo-Christians have even provided the necessary economic and political means, i.e. welfare statism and human rights, for ensuring that the genetically unfit breed large numbers of offspring with each passing generation. This has created an “idiocracy,” one that threatens the sustainability of all Western institutions. With each passing year, an enormous fiscal burden is imposed on the state for the support and daily maintenance of this growing class of dependents.

The Christian belief in the sacredness or intrinsic worth of all human life means that the religion is best regarded as an inherently anti-eugenic force. This Christian hatred of race improvement has manifested itself throughout European history. Christian monasticism and the priesthood, which removed Europe’s most gifted men from the gene pool, helped prolong the Dark Ages by hundreds of years.

Christian opposition to eugenics may also be driven by a recognition that actual religious belief is correlated with genetic inferiority. The negative correlation between intelligence and religiosity has been known since the mid-1920’s. Recent findings include a 2009 study revealing that atheists have average IQ’s 6 points higher than religious believers. This more than exceeds the threshold for statistical significance. The study further explored the relationship between national IQ and disbelief in god, finding a correlation of 0.60. This negative correlation, replicated across multiple studies, is the main reason why Christianity has experienced such explosive growth in the underdeveloped regions of Africa and Latin America.

In this context, Christian opposition to eugenics is a defensive maneuver. A more biologically evolved population would abandon Christianity for a rational belief-system. This would bankrupt the Christian religion by emptying church coffers and forcing its clergy to find an alternative source of employment.

Christianity is a threat to global peace and security. This makes it the world’s most dangerous religion. The Roman Catholic Church, the largest Christian denomination in the world at almost 1.3 billion members, is opposed to abortion and all other forms of contraception. Protestants are also against abortion, although many support voluntary contraception. Neo-Christians, which include modern liberals and cultural Marxists, although not opposed to the free availability of abortion and contraception in the West, are opposed to population stabilization and reduction in Third World countries.

Although modern research has demonstrated the existence of a significant positive correlation between foreign aid and fertility, Christian organizations continue to actively send aid to Third World countries. The continuous flow of money from the global north to the global south has led to explosive population growth in the developing regions of the world.

This problem is most acute in Africa, where the demographic situation has been significantly exacerbated by foreign aid from the liberal governments of developed countries and Christian charities. The population increases through a continuous stream of charitable donation, which places great strain on available resources as the local carrying capacity of the land is exceeded. Competition for scarce resources intensifies, bringing violent conflict in its wake; large-scale famines occur with increasing frequency and severity. The destabilization of entire regions leads to increasing numbers of Africans desperately trying to escape worsening conditions in their own countries, accelerating the destruction of Western civilization through the demographic timebomb of Third World migration.

After the West has been utterly destroyed by rampaging migrant hordes, the populations that once survived on Christian charity and foreign aid return to subsistence-level conditions after Malthusian catastrophe. This results in widespread depopulation of Africa south of the Sahara Desert.

Like the patristic Christianity that once menaced the world of classical antiquity, the “neo-Christianity” of social welfare liberalism and cultural Marxism threatens to bring about the complete destruction of modern Western civilization. Political doctrines like equality and human rights, forged within a Christian theological context, are now used as tools for the dispossession of Europeans in their own homelands. Not only is neo-Christianity represented by liberal-leftist ideology; it is also an intrinsic element of modern Christian teaching that has rediscovered its primitive Christian roots.

All Christian churches, both Protestant and Catholic, support racial egalitarianism; they actively promote the ethnocide of the West through massive and indiscriminate Third World immigration. This resurgent neo-Christianity gathers momentum with each passing decade. Time will only tell whether the neo-Christian recreation of god’s kingdom on earth is successful, but the current prognosis for Western civilization remains a bleak one.

The multiculturalist state religion was implemented during the cultural revolution of the 1960s. Reversal of course is not possible in this current atmosphere of state-sanctioned political correctness. If the liberal-leftist regimes of the West maintain their grip on power, the dystopian conditions they have socially engineered will continue without interruption into the foreseeable future. The totalitarian nature of multicultural ideology is further reinforced by the systematic brainwashing of Western populations and Jewish elite control of politics, the media, all major financial institutions and the academic world.

European civilization is in danger of being permanently eclipsed by the specter of neo-Christian influence, which hangs over the continent like the sword of Damocles. We will always have the Bible and the church, but Western scientific and technological advancement will not be with us forever. It is obvious that Christianity offers nothing but endless misery and suffering for Western man. Unless the remaining vestiges of Christianity in Europe are extinguished without a trace, European civilization will find itself submerged in a dark age more long-lasting and calamitous than the one that engulfed Europe after the Christianization of the Latin-speaking West in the 4th century.

For the first time in history, Western man must choose between Christianity or the survival of his own civilization. We can only hope that he chooses wisely as the “hour of decision” fast approaches.

Why Europeans must reject Christianity, 17

by Ferdinand Bardamu

 
The Christian origins of modern liberalism and socialism

The “anticipatory” consequences of spiritual equality meant social and economic equality for the church, leading to the establishment of formal communism in the early Christian communities. This was not just philanthropy, but a highly organized social welfare system that maximized the redistribution of wealth. Early Christian communism was widespread and lasted for centuries, crossing both geographical and ethno-cultural boundaries. The communist practices of the ante-Nicene church were rooted in the Jesus tradition of the 1st century. The existence of early Christian communism is well-attested by the Ante-Nicene fathers and contemporary pagans.

After Christianity became the official state religion, the church became increasingly hierarchical as ecclesiastical functions were merged with those of imperial bureaucracy. The communist socio-economic practices of the early church were abandoned by medieval Christians. This was replaced by a view of inequality as static, the result of a “great chain of being” that ranked things from lowest to highest. The great chain was used by theologians to justify cosmologically the rigidly stratified social order that had emerged from the ashes of the old Roman world. It added a veneer of ideological legitimacy to the feudal system in Europe. In the great chain, Christ’s vicar, the pope, was stationed at the top, followed by European monarchs, clergy, nobility and, at the very bottom, landless peasantry. This entailed a view of spiritual equality as “antipathetic.” St. Thomas Aquinas provided further justification for inequality along narrowly teleological lines. In the Summa Contra Gentiles, diversity and variety in creation reflect the harmonious order established by god. If the universe only contained equal things, only one kind of good would exist and this would detract from the beauty and perfection of creation.

The antipathetic view of Christian equality was the dominant one until the Protestant Reformation of the 16th century. Martin Luther’s iconic act—the nailing of the 95 Theses to the Wittenberg Castle door in 1517—began an ecclesiastical crisis of authority that was to have tremendous repercussions for the future of Western history. The pope was no longer the supreme representative of Christ on earth, but an irredeemably corrupt tyrant, who had wantonly cast the church into the wilderness of spiritual oblivion and error.

Access to previously unknown works of ancient science and philosophy introduced to an educated public the pagan epistemic values that would pave the way for the Scientific Revolution of the 17th century. The humanist cry of ad fontes! was eagerly embraced by Reformers. It allowed them to undermine scholastic hermeneutical principles (i.e. the Quadriga) and the major doctrines of medieval Christianity. The rediscovery of more reliable manuscripts of the Bible served as an important catalyst of the Reformation.

Reformed theologians, armed with humanist textual and philological methods, studied the New Testament and the Ante-Nicene fathers in the original languages. This led to a Christian “renaissance,” a rediscovery of the early Christian world. Compared to the lax morality and spiritual indifference of late medieval clergy, the first 4 or 5 centuries of the primitive church seemed like a golden age, one that maintained the doctrinal purity of Christian orthodoxy until Pope Gregory I, unencumbered by the gross distortions of scholastic theology and ecclesiastical tradition. Early Christian teachings and practices, forgotten during the Middle Ages, became popular once again among Protestants.

Reformers sought to recapture the spirit of primitive Christianity by incorporating egalitarian and majoritarian principles into an early modern ecclesiastical setting. Egalitarian thought was first enunciated in Luther’s teaching on the universal priesthood of all believers. In contrast to medieval Christian teaching, which viewed the clergy as members of a spiritual aristocracy, Luther proclaimed all Christians equally priests before god, with each one having the same capacity to preach and minister to fellow believers. On this basis, Luther demanded an end to the differential treatment of clergy and laity under canon law. He also defended the majoritarian principle by challenging the Roman ecclesiastical prerogative of appointing ministers for Christian congregations. Calvin, the other great Reformed leader, acknowledged the real-world consequences of spiritual equality, but approached it from the perspective of universal equality in total depravity.

Protestant radicals viewed the egalitarian policies of the mainstream Reformed churches as fundamentally inadequate; any concrete realization of Christian spiritual equality entailed a large-scale revival of the communistic socio-economic practices of the primitive church. Muntzer, an early disciple of Luther, is representative of this more radical egalitarian version of the gospel. In 1525, a group of religious fanatics, including Muntzer, seized control of Muhlhausen in Thuringia. During their brief rule over the city, they implemented the program of the Eleven Articles, a revolutionary document calling for social justice and the elimination of poverty. Idols were smashed, monks were driven out of their convents and monastic property was seized and redistributed to the poor. From the pulpit, Muntzer delivered fiery sermons ordering his congregation to do away with the “idol” of private property if they wished the “spirit of God” to dwell among them. A leader of the Peasant’s War in Germany, he was captured in May of 1525 after his army was defeated at Frankenhausen. He was tortured and then executed, but not before his captors were able to extract the confession: “Omnia sunt communia.” Whether the confession represents the exact words of Muntzer is controversial; nevertheless, it accurately reflects Muntzer’s anti-materialistic piety and view that the teachings of the gospel were to be implemented in full.

The Munster Rebellion of 1534-1535, led by Jan Matthys and Johann of Leiden, was far more extreme in its radicalism. After the Anabaptist seizure of the city, Matthys declared Munster the site of the New Jerusalem. Catholics and Lutherans were then driven from the town, their property confiscated and redistributed to the poor “according to their needs” by deacons who had been carefully selected by Matthys. They set about imposing the primitive communism of the early church upon the town’s inhabitants. Money was abolished; personal dwellings were made the public property of all Christian believers; people were forced to cook and eat their food in communal kitchens and dining-halls, in imitation of the early Christian “love feasts.” Ominously, Matthys and Johann even ordered the mass burning of all books, except the Bible. This was to symbolize a break with the sinful past and the beginning of a new communist era, like the Year One of the French Revolutionary National Convention. In the fall of 1534, Anabaptist-controlled Munster officially abolished all private property within city limits. But the Anabaptist commune was not to last for long. After a lengthy siege, the Anabaptist ringleaders, including Johann of Leiden, were captured, tortured and then executed by the Bishop of Munster.

The Diggers (or “True Levellers”) and the Levellers (or “Agitators”), active during the English Civil Wars (1642-1651) and the Protectorate (1653-1659), were strongly influenced by primitive Christian teaching. The Diggers, founded by Gerard Winstanley, were inspired by the communist socio-economic practices of the early Christians. They tried to establish agrarian communism in England, but were opposed in this endeavor, often violently, by wealthy farmers and local government officials who dismissed them as atheists and libertines. The more influential Levellers, a radical Puritan faction, tried to thoroughly democratize England by introducing policies of religious toleration and universal male suffrage. Their rejection of the arbitrary monarchical power of King Charles I in favor of egalitarian democracy was ultimately informed by Christian theological premises. Prominent Levellers like “Freeborn” John Lilburne argued for democratic egalitarian principles based on their exegetical interpretation of the Book of Genesis. All men were created equal, they said, with no one having more power, dignity and authority than anyone else in the Garden of Eden. Since no man had the right to exercise authority over others, only popular sovereignty could legitimately serve as the underlying basis of civil government. Many Leveller proposals, as written down in the Agreement of the People, were incorporated into the English Bill of Rights of 1689. This document later influenced the American Bill of Rights of 1791.

John Locke was the founder of modern liberalism, a political tradition soaked in Christian religious dogma. He drew many social and political implications from Christian spiritual equality. His belief in equality was rooted in the firm conviction that all men were created in the image of god, making them equal by nature. Church fathers and medieval theologians had long argued that all men, whether slave or free, were “by nature equal,” but that social inequality among men was god’s punishment for sin. John Locke agreed with the patristic and medieval authors on natural equality but repudiated their use of original sin to justify the passive acceptance of human social and economic inequality. Like the Protestant reformers before him, he believed that spiritual equality was not merely eschatological, but entailed certain real-world implications of far-reaching political significance.

Locke’s argument for universal equality was derived from a careful historical and exegetical interpretation of the biblical narrative. The creation of man in god’s image had enormous ramifications for his political theory, especially as it concerns his views on the nature of civil government and the scope of its authority. From his reading of Genesis, Locke argued that no man had the right to dominate and exploit other members of the human species. Man was created by god to exercise dominion over the animal kingdom. Unlike animals, who are by nature inferior, there can be no subjection among humans because their species-membership bears the imprint of an “omnipotent and infinitely wise maker.” This meant that all men are born naturally free and independent. Locke’s view of universal equality further entailed the “possession of the same faculties” by all men. Although men differed in terms of gross intellectual endowment, they all possessed a low-level intellectual ability that allowed them to manipulate abstract ideas and logically reason out the existence of a supreme being.

In Locke’s view, all government authority must be based on the consent of the electorate. This was an extension of his belief in mankind’s natural equality. Any abuse of power by elected representatives, when all judicial and political avenues of redress had been exhausted, was to be remedied by armed revolution. This would restore men to the original liberty they had in the Garden of Eden. Freedom from tyranny would allow them to elect a government that was more consonant with the will of the people.

Locke’s theory of natural rights was based on biblical notions of an idyllic prehistory in the Garden of Eden. Contrary to monarchical theorists like Filmer, man’s earliest social organization was not a hierarchical one, but egalitarian and democratic. If all men were created equal, no one had the right to deprive any man of life, liberty and private property. In Lockean political philosophy, rights are essentially moral obligations with Christian religious overtones. If men were obliged to surrender certain natural rights to the civil government, it was only because they were better administered collectively for the general welfare. Those rights that could not be surrendered were considered basic liberties, like the right to life and private property.

Early modern Christian writers envisioned in detail what an ideal communist society would look like and how it would function. The earliest communist literature emerged from within a Christian religious context. A famous example is Thomas More’s Utopia, written in 1516, which owes more to patristic ideals of communism and monastic egalitarian practice than Plato’s Republic. Another explicitly communist work is the Dominican friar Tommaso Campanella’s 1602 book City of the Sun. These works form an important bridge between pre-modern Christian communism and the “utopian” and “scientific” socialism of the 19th century. For the first time in history, these writings provided an in-depth critique of the socio-economic conditions of contemporary European society, indicating that only through implementation of a communist system would it be possible to fully realize the humanist ideals of the Renaissance. They went beyond communalization of property within isolated patriarchal communities to envisage the transformation of large-scale political units into unified economic organisms. These would be characterized by social ownership and democratic control. Implicit in these writings was the assumption that only the power of the state could bring about a just and humanitarian social order.

“Utopian” or pre-Marxian socialism was an important stage in the development of modern leftist ideology. Its major exponents, Blanc, Cabet, Fourier, Saint-Simon and Owen, were either devout Christians or men profoundly influenced by the socio-economic and ethical teachings of primitive Christianity. They often viewed Jesus of Nazareth as a great socialist leader. They typically believed that their version of communism was a faithful realization of Jesus’ evangelical message. In the pre-Marxian vision, the primitive communism of the early Christian church was an ideal to be embraced and imitated. Many of these writers even defended their communist beliefs through extensive quotation from the New Testament.

Louis Blanc saw Jesus Christ as the “sublime master of all socialists” and socialism as the “gospel in action.” Etienne Cabet, the founder of the Icarian movement, equated true Christianity with communism. If Icarianism was the earthly realization of Jesus’ vision of a coming kingdom of god, it was imperative that all communists “admire, love and invoke Jesus Christ and his doctrine.” Charles Fourier, an early founder of modern socialism, viewed Jesus Christ and Isaac Newton as the two most important figures in the formative development of his belief-system. He grounded his socialist ideology squarely within the Christian tradition. As the only true follower of Jesus Christ, Fourier was sent to earth as the “Comforter” of John 14:26, the “Messiah of Reason” who would rehabilitate all mankind along socialist industrial lines.

Henri de Saint-Simon, another important founder of modern socialism, believed the true gospel of Christ to be one of humility and equality. He advocated a “New Christianity” that would realize the practical and economic implications of the just world order preached by Jesus. Saint-Simon was also an early precursor of the Social Gospel movement, which sought to ameliorate social pathology through application of Christian ethical principles. The early Welsh founder of modern socialism, Robert Owen, although hostile to organized Christianity and other established religions, regarded his version of socialism as “true and genuine Christianity, freed from the errors that had been attached to it.” Only through the practice of socialism would the “invaluable precepts of the Gospel” be fully realized in contemporary industrial society.

The earliest pioneers of socialism, all of whom maintained socio-economic views grounded upon Christian religious principles, exercised a profound and lasting influence on Marx. His neo-Christian religious beliefs must be regarded as the only real historical successor of orthodox Christianity, largely because his ideology led to the implementation of Christian socio-economic teachings on a scale hitherto unimaginable. Muntzer, the radical Anabaptists and other Christian communists are considered important predecessors of the modern socialist movements of the 19th and 20th centuries. For example, in Friedrich Engels’ short monograph The Peasant War in Germany, Muntzer is immortalized as the man whose religious and political views were way ahead of his times. He even possessed a far more sophisticated “theoretical equipment” than the many communist movements of Engels’ own day.

The primitive communist transformation of the socio-economic order under Christianity is based on 1.) the elimination of all ethno-linguistic and socio-economic distinction between men—unity in Christ—and; 2.) the fundamental spiritual equality of all human beings before god; it is the mirror image of the modern communist transformation of the socio-economic order under classical Marxist ideology, which is based on 1.) elimination of all class distinction between men and; 2.) a fundamental “equality” of access to a common storehouse of agricultural produce and manufactured goods. The numerous similarities between Christian communism and Marxism are too striking to be mere coincidence. Without the dominant influence of Christianity, the rise of modern communism and socialism would have been impossible.

The Protestant Reformation of the 16th century links the socio-economic egalitarianism of the early Christian communities with the socio-economic egalitarianism of the modern West. As a religious mass movement beginning in late medieval times, it profoundly affected the course of Western civilization. The Reformation played an instrumental role in the initial formulation and spread of liberal and socialist forms of egalitarian thought that now serve as the dominant state religions of the modern Western “democracies.” Without Luther and the mass upheaval that followed in his wake, Christian spiritual equality would have remained an eschatological fact with no direct bearing on the modern secular world.

Spengler’s observation that “Christian theology is the grandmother of Bolshevism” is a truism. All forms of Western communism are grounded in the Christian tradition. The same applies to liberal egalitarian thought, which was also formulated within a Christian religious milieu.

Why Europeans must reject Christianity, 15

by Ferdinand Bardamu

 
What has Christianity done for Europe?

Christianity is a violent, destructive, murderous cult. It is dangerous for the following reasons: 1.) the religion promotes the survival of the sick, the weak and the stupid at the expense of good racial hygiene. This drastically lowers population IQ and capacity for civilizational attainment, and; 2.) the cult relies on blind faith instead of rational persuasion, which has resulted in long periods of widespread chaos and bloodshed, especially during the Christianization of Europe. These dangers were even noticed by contemporary pagan writers, who immediately recognized the threat a triumphant Christianity would pose to the survival of Western culture.

Christianity never “civilized” or “domesticated” Europeans. On the contrary, Europeans were forced to endure a Neolithic existence when Christians were at the apogee of their power and influence. The church sent men of genius to monasteries or had them consecrated to the priesthood. This prevented them from passing on their genes, a significant dysgenic effect that lowered the collective European IQ. Only the pagan science and reason of classical antiquity could re-domesticate Europeans after 500 years of total intellectual darkness.

The church successfully defended Europe from invasion, argue some apologists, but nothing could be further from the truth. Charles Martel’s confiscation of church property to defend Europe from Moslem intruders was met with significant ecclesiastical opposition. If the church had succeeded in withholding the necessary funds, all Europe would have been reduced to a province of the Umayyad caliphate. Nevertheless, Martel was unable to pursue the Saracens across the Pyrenees and dislodge them from their Andalusian stronghold. The Moslems would continue their occupation of the Iberian Peninsula for 800 years, until their final expulsion by Ferdinand and Isabella in the late 15th century.

Southwestern France and Italy were periodically raided and sometimes controlled by Moslem invaders. The emirate of Sicily endured for over two centuries. Even after Norman conquest, a significant Moslem presence remained on the island. The Moslems of Sicily were finally expelled by the middle of the 13th century. The crusades to retake the Holy Land from the Saracens (1095-1291), a series of large-scale military operations under the joint leadership of papacy and feudal aristocracy, failed to achieve its primary objective. In 1204, Christian crusaders sacked Constantinople in an orgy of rape, pillage and murder. The crusaders caused so much damage that the Byzantines were unable to resist their Ottoman conquerors in 1453.

Christianity provided no adequate defense of Europe. The church only did enough to maintain herself as a viable institution. In the process, the church weakened Europe, making her ripe for conquest by the Umayyad and Ottoman caliphates.

Apologists tentatively acknowledge that although Christianity hindered scientific and technological progress, it still made “contributions” to fields as diverse as architecture and philosophy. On closer examination, these “contributions” are neither “Christian” nor worthy of being considered “contributions.” The great churches of the Middle Ages are frequently trotted out, but these have their origin in Roman building methods. The dome, the arch and the vault, the typical features of the medieval Romanesque style of architecture are all borrowed from the imperial Roman architecture of pre-Christian times. The basic architectural plan of most medieval churches is the Roman basilica, a public building reserved for official purposes. Even the Gothic style that supplanted Romanesque still employed architectural features of Roman origin. The ribbed vaulting that was typical of Gothic architecture was originally used in Vespasian’s Roman colosseum and by Hadrian in the construction of his Tibertine villa.

While acknowledging Romanesque as an “accomplishment,” the Christian religionist will conveniently ignore the almost total disappearance of Roman building methods from western Europe for almost 300 years. This was a direct result of the church’s active suppression of Western scientific and technical knowledge. From the completion of Theodoric’s mausoleum in Ravenna to the consecration of Aachen in 805, nothing of monumental significance was built in western Europe. During the intervening period, Europeans, like their Neolithic ancestors, had returned to the use of perishable materials for use in building.

Apologists for Christianity will mention Aquinas and scholasticism as the highpoints of not only medieval, but European intellectual development, even though Aquinas set European scientific and technological progress back by hundreds of years. Scholasticism was an object of ridicule and mockery during the Renaissance. Religionists mention the Christian “contribution” of the university, oblivious to the many institutions of higher learning that existed and even flourished in the ancient world. The first universities taught scholasticism, so they were the frontline in the Christian war against the pagan values of intellectual curiosity, love of progress for its own sake and empirical rationality.

In the Christian religious mind, science and technology are of Christian origin because the men doing the discovering and inventing during the Scientific Revolution were nominal Christians, like Galileo and Newton. This argument is just as absurd as arguing that the Greek invention of logic, rhetoric and mathematics were the result of Greek pagan theological beliefs because Aristotle and other ancient scientists and philosophers were pagans. No, these men were “Christians” because public avowals of atheism were dangerous in an age where even the most innocuous theological speculation could smear reputations and destroy careers. It is a glowing tribute to the courage and honesty of these men that they were able to abandon Christianity’s reliance on blind faith, often in the face of public censure, and consciously re-embrace the pagan epistemic values that produced the “Greek miracle” 2000 years before the Scientific Revolution.

Christian religionists claim that the New Testament, a collection of childish scribblings penned by semi-literate barbarians, is a great contribution to Western civilization. As has been pointed out for generations, even by other Christian religionists, the work is notorious for its use of bad grammar and unrefined literary style. Much of it was composed by Jews who were not even fluent in koine Greek. Overall, the New Testament is an inferior production compared to the meanest writers of Attic prose. Even St. Jerome, the translator of the Vulgate, expressed contempt for the crude, unsophisticated literary style of the Bible. He preferred the elegant Latin of Cicero instead.

What has Christianity contributed to Europe? The answer is nothing! No art, culture, architectural monuments, science or technology. Christianity was a massive waste of European intellectual and physical potential. Furthermore, Christianity almost destroyed Europe.

The church discarded over 99% of ancient literature, including works on science, mathematics, philosophy, engineering and architecture. This was the largest campaign of literary censorship and suppression in history, an act of cultural and physical genocide that nearly severed medieval Europe from the great achievements of classical antiquity.

This was cultural genocide because the church nearly wiped out an entire civilization and culture; this was physical genocide because the church’s deliberate eradication of secular knowledge placed millions of lives in danger, unnecessarily subjecting them to the ravages of disease, war, famine and poverty.

Far from being largely benign, the Christian church is a power-mad religious mafia. It bears sole responsibility for perpetrating the greatest crimes in history against Europeans. How long shall the Christian church escape punishment for this criminal wrongdoing? No other religion has caused as much suffering and as much damage to Europe as this spiritual syphilis known as Christianity.

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Why Europeans must reject Christianity, 11

by Ferdinand Bardamu

 
More Christian excuses

Christian religionists tout Aquinas and Bacon as exceptions to the anti-scientific world-view of the church, but these men were writing in response to Aristotle, who had just been rediscovered in the 12th century. Even in antiquity, Aristotle was considered outdated.

Neither Aquinas nor Bacon were scientists, none of them performed any real scientific experiments and none of them advanced science in any real or tangible way. Their achievement was to reconcile the Semitic doctrines of Christianity with the superior pagan ways of Aristotle, but the results of this were highly unsatisfactory.

Aquinas was also the father of medieval scholasticism, which proved highly detrimental to the rise of modern science in Europe. Scholastic methodology was eventually mocked for its absurdities by Renaissance writers like François Rabelais.

Because of the Christian emphasis on scripture and tradition as final source of authority, the church was opposed to the pagan epistemic values of public verifiability of evidence and empirical rationality. To the church hierarchy, the search for knowledge in accordance with such principles was both arrogant and dangerously heretical. Even with the reintroduction of pagan science and philosophy in the 12th century, there was still significant ecclesiastical opposition to the unaided reason as guide to truth.

The Christian church persecuted those who chose to question Christian religious orthodoxy with impunity. This fostered an environment in which pursuit of scientific and technical progress became a virtual impossibility. For example, the posthumous condemnation of the 6th century Alexandrian philosopher John Philoponus as a heretic ensured that his principled rejection of Neoplatonic and Aristotelian philosophy would remain unknown for centuries to come. This organized ecclesiastical persecution of free thinkers ruled out any possibility of material progress until the Scientific Revolution.

Despite what the facts reveal, Christian religionists have tried to distort the historical record by pretending otherwise. They believe that Christianity was a necessary ingredient, the “spark” that began the Scientific Revolution of the 17th century. This ignores the fact that science and religion, specifically Christianity in this case, are fundamentally incompatible.

Christianity is about blind faith, with revelation and authority serving as the only valid criteria for the evaluation of truth. In contrast, science is the accumulation of knowledge through logical reasoning, empirical observation and measurement. Christianity is a form of magical thinking; it is not open to revision. Science, on the other hand, is continuously in search of new ideas with ever greater explanatory power. Though scientific and technological progress occurred between 400 BC to 300 AD, leading to the development of ideas that would not be surpassed until the Scientific Revolution, there was virtually no progress from 300 AD to the 12th century, the apogee of Christian power and influence in Europe.

Even Christian Byzantium, which was more successful than the post-Roman successor states of the Latin West, never made any significant progress in science and technology. Under Christian influence, Europe regressed to a Neolithic stage of existence. This is well-supported by recent archeological evidence revealing numerous medieval simplifications of the earlier Roman material culture. Trade, industry and agriculture all witnessed significant declines in technical sophistication, economic productivity and output. Population size also decreased because of overall declines in prosperity and comfort.

Why Europeans must reject Christianity, 10

by Ferdinand Bardamu

 
Section IV: Christianity and the narrowing of the Western intellectual horizon

Christians declared all-out war on the secular foundations of the Roman state. In doing so, they inevitably attacked Rome’s tradition of great art and architecture, as well as the vast storehouses of scientific and technical knowledge that had been accumulated over the centuries. Christians who desired the total eradication of paganism had nothing viable with which to replace the secular culture of the late antique world.

Many Christians, conscious of the inferiority of their own religious traditions when compared to the majestic scientific and philosophical achievements of Western culture, attacked secular learning out of envy and spite. This intellectual poverty of the Christian religion induced a significant narrowing of Western intellectual horizons. The entrenchment and consolidation of the Nicene state religious cult obviated the necessity of a classical education for worldly success. Many pursued a religious vocation instead, an option that suddenly became attractive as the Christian church increased in power and influence.

The 4th century witnessed the dismantlement of the public education system by zealous Christians, who were disgusted with the paganism of the classical academic curriculum. The Christian emperors, unlike their pagan antecedents, did not patronize secular philosophy and science; the administrative apparatus responsible for disbursement of state funds, now controlled by an ecclesiastical bureaucracy, withheld them in the case of teachers who specialized in the classics. This angered many of the last remaining pagans of late antiquity, who bitterly complained about the role of Christianity in spreading a general lack of interest in pursuing a secular education.

A man with a classical education was no longer as highly esteemed as he once was before the age of Constantine. The leaders of the empire’s most powerful institution, the church, contemptuously dismissed their learning as mere “worldly wisdom.” In the eyes of the church, reliance on the faculty of reason alone was the mark of demonic possession, a path fraught with snares for lost souls on the way to eternal damnation in the fires of hell.

This made the educated man condescending and arrogant, as well as too sophisticated for the simple message of the gospels, which he derided as a collection of childish fables. An educated man would also question Christian doctrine, even embrace heresy, making him especially dangerous from an ecclesiastical point of view. The existence of the classical curriculum posed a significant obstacle to the imperial policy of Christianization. By downgrading and marginalizing the pursuit of a secular education, the church was able to gradually eliminate this threat, producing a more docile public, like the sheep in the parables of Jesus. From now on, Christians like Martin of Tours would have more important things to do than learn how to read and write.

The final triumph of orthodoxy over reason is enshrined in the church’s canon law, which forbade clergy and laity from reading the secular literature of antiquity. This canonical prohibition was famously enforced by Pope Gregory I, who severely reprimanded his bishops for instructing students in classical literature. “One mouth cannot praise both Christ and Jupiter at the same time,” thundered Gregory from the Papal See in Rome.

The Church controlled all medieval scriptoria in Europe. Advice to monks from church leadership, ordering them to despise all secular knowledge as “foolishness in the eyes of god,” exercised a damaging influence on the scribal transmission of classical literature, merely strengthening the clerical refusal to not copy works of pagan origin. What followed was the inevitable loss of the knowledge needed to run an advanced pre-industrial society.

This only worsened and prolonged the Dark Ages, reducing Europeans to a Neolithic existence in the process. Gregory’s hatred of Rome’s secular past was so fierce he was rumored to have personally hunted down and burnt every copy of Titus Livy’s History he could get his hands on. The Library of the Palatine Apollo, first established by Augustus in Rome, was burnt to the ground on his orders. This was to protect the faithful from being contaminated by the “poison” of secular Greek and Latin literature.

Isidore of Seville was the only real “intellectual” for 200 years of western European history. His Etymologies, the most popular and widely used textbook of the Middle Ages, was written in support of Christian “fundamentalism.” Although unsurpassed in topical comprehensiveness, Isidore’s intellectual depth and range of knowledge are considerably inferior to the Roman encyclopedists who preceded him.

Isidore lived in a geocentric universe enclosed within a rotating star-studded sphere, not unlike the cosmology of the ancient Hebrews. Between the flat earth and the outer sphere are seven concentric inner spheres. The concept of infinite space was completely alien to Isidore’s way of thinking; the universe is a small place with definite boundaries. The fact that all knowledge could be summarized in a single volume shows how drastically intellectual horizons had narrowed under Christian influence. Isidore regarded all pagan science and philosophy as heresy anathema to right-thinking Christians.

The church, using the Etymologies as a guide, censored and suppressed the pagan literature quoted in its pages. Isidore further denigrated intellectual curiosity as “dangerous” and “harmful.” Isidore’s widely influential Monastic Rule warned monks of the dangers of reading pagan literature; the rule stated that ideally monks should be completely ignorant of all secular knowledge. Isidore’s condemnation of secular knowledge reinforced the prevailing “fundamentalist” orthodoxy of the church, which demanded the censorship and suppression of all pagan science and philosophy.