The human side of chess, 9

‘Why do chess players grieve so much after a defeat?… Because defeat is like a little death’. —Manuel Suárez / Boris Zlotnik

What to do after defeat

None of the chess fans I know knows that mastery of the game is due to factors that have nothing to do with his will. Only in a small group of vocations can a human being aspire to be a child prodigy. Music, mathematics and chess are paradigms. Some compare Bach’s music with mathematics, whose logic is inherent, or a priori a Kantian would say, to the human mind. Also, as a special form of computation that is chess, early training can turn a child with special characteristics into a Capablanca, for whom chess was his mother tongue. The same can be said for Russian and former Soviet republics players who, unlike my very modest level when I played Monroy, reach grandmaster norm at fifteen or sixteen.

Few things have impressed me more than the autobiographical part of Capablanca’s My Chess Career. By winning a match against American Frank Marshall, the Cuban reached the level of a grandmaster without studying a single opening book. This is the most representative fact that I can think of to point out how someone with good genes who learned to play chess from the age of four, and developed the edge of his mind in that computational area, can become a world champion. Capablanca’s brain, the ‘chess machine’, was trained in the span of life in which one is capable of developing new faculties. That is why music conservatories do not admit students after a certain age. The same thing happens in chess.

The neurological development of certain areas of the brain differs between a Capablanca or fifteen-year-old GMs and the rest of the hobbyists. An even more terrible truth is that a high IQ is innate, and has to do with the ethnic group to which one belongs. Not having heard this, many have pursued the mirage that, through sheer study, they would become grandmasters as if it were something similar to obtaining a doctorate in physics. In reality, the rating that a young man learning the game in his twenties can develop is relatively modest, and even the level of a child or pubescent if he doesn’t have the right genes for this game. If we study chess to reach the equivalent of a doctorate, the knowledge acquired can help us to be excellent instructors, but it won’t necessarily allow us to play like the first boards in the world. Like the violin or piano prodigies, in chess what counts is how much we train certain areas of our brain in childhood, puberty and adolescence. Using a crude computational analogy, what really matters is the kind of software our brains were trained with, in addition to racial hardware (nowadays, there are no active chess GMs of the black race).

In the introduction I said that the talks of some amateur fans motivated me to write this book. One of these friends is called Alcides, who is well educated in chess. In the café where we talked Alcides played matches with Yayo, who doesn’t read chess and doesn’t even know how to maintain the opposition in a king and pawn versus king ending. However, Yayo generally beat Alcides in matches. On several occasions I spoke with Alcides about the Lasker manual. He likes the original German version better than the shortened English and Spanish versions. One of these versions once wore on a coffee table, but as usual Lasker’s pupil was swept away by Yayo. Alcides is capable in his profession of computer science and handling of computers. But despite his chess and computational knowledge, his uneducated rival has a better brain to play chess. Let’s put it iconoclastically: Lasker’s manual, and in fact all the chess books that I know, are bad and anti-pedagogical because they don’t start from a vital axiom about the game: the development of certain brain areas differs among people and even among the races.

It is not my intention to discourage Caissa’s suitors. But the young aspiring would spare a lot of dreams if, at home or school, we had been given this elementary class in neurology and raciology. Personally, given my father’s talents in music and visual arts, that was where I could’ve excelled (think of prominent Mexican filmmakers in Hollywood like Cuarón, Iñárritu, and del Toro), not computational business like chess. But even if we take all of this into account, compared to Cuba the chess level in Mexico is low. If we add to this that many of us are ageing and that we don’t have good instructors, those Botvinnik and Averbach that the Russian children and lads had, it will be virtually impossible to make the quantum leap to become GMs. Here I can’t help but come to mind a photograph of instructor Botvinnik with a young Garri Kasparov next to him. It also comes to mind that both of Fischer’s parents were Jewish. His biological father was a brilliant mathematician (Ashkenazi Jews are the ethnic group ranked the highest on the IQ scale).

Listening to a thirteen-year-old boy play Beethoven’s concerto for violin and orchestra is like watching some children from the former Soviet republics play games of blitz. Such is the virtuosity of these Paganinis of Caissa that they give their colleagues a five-minute lead, by just two minutes of their own, and destroy them with diabolical precision. No matter how hard you study, you’ll never play blitz games like that: an infallible measurer of the level of a boy whose mother tongue had been chess. To meditate thoughtfully on what we read in chess literature, to put our games to Fritz to understand them better, to consult the Encyclopedia of Chess Openings to see where we made the imprecision, to play one tournament after another to accustom to fighting chess, may be instructive but not necessarily to jump significantly in skill level. At least not to take the leap that some young people fantasise about. Our brain is already formed, formatted I would dare to say.

Presently, the edge of my mind manifests itself in my speciality of understanding the psychic havoc that abusive parents cause—an area that has nothing to do with chess. Capablanca, who never undertook the chess study marathons that many unsuspecting do, played infinitely better than I and other inveterate scholars. I have said that few things have impressed me more than Capablanca beat a GM during a match without studying a single opening book (on another level, this is exactly what happened in Alcides’ matches with Yayo). At twenty Capablanca had not played a single match with a grandmaster, and he beat Marshall with a crushing score of +8 = 14 –1 (eight games won, fourteen draws and one loss). This is the fact that best illustrates what a genius is. If the pedagogues were humble enough to accept the innate deficiencies of the child, they would know that he won’t speak as fast as the Jew Ben Shapiro, or that he won’t obtain the title of GM of chess at thirteen as did the Nordic Magnus Carlsen, who would conquer the sceptre.

(Thirteen-year-old Carlsen in Norway giving a simultaneous exhibition.) We don’t need to rank high on verbal IQ, the speciality of the Jews, to become a champion. But we do need to rank high, like the Nordics, Slavs or Asians, in spatial intelligence. If you still want to play under these circumstances, my suggestion is that you write an intimate diary about your emotions in the game and your love of the game taking these facts into account.

Classification of life

Yesterday and today I watched the Systematic Classification of Life series on YouTube by L. Aron Nelson, an American who changed his name to Aron Ra.

According to his Wikipedia page, he is a feminist and tried to run in the Democratic Party. It’s fascinating how in the first forty-nine episodes of his series of fifty he describes elegantly the biological evolution from worm to man. But in the very last episode Nelson speaks of human races repeating the most psychotic claims in vogue today, that races don’t exist, etc.

In the comments section of that video 50, in which Nelson appears with a T-Shirt flaunting heavy metal (in the previous episodes he painted his beard blue: a symbol of the current degeneration), I left him a note today: ‘You’re so wrong! in claiming “Modern ethnic groups have very little differences outside of appearance”. Human races do exist and you completely ruined your otherwise excellent series with this politically-correct final episode. Haven’t you even watched the most interesting exchange between Stefan Molyneux and David Rubin?’ And I added: ‘Do you want the scholarly sources?’ linking the AmRen books on race realism.

It is amazing how men of science immediately turn into pseudoscientists when opining about the human races. I recently debunked the Netflix series Queen’s Gambit showing that in the real world women cannot compete with men in chess (here, here and here).

Well, the IQ differences are even bigger between blacks and whites. At least several women have managed to obtain the norms to achieve the status of Grandmaster of chess. But only one black man has managed to obtain such norms, and with a rating of 2504 when he reached the peak of his chess career (the first chess boards in the world have more than 2800).

Nelson doesn’t want to see these brutal differences between blacks and whites for the simple fact that, despite his scientific background, upon reaching the subject of human biodiversity in Episode 50 he bows to the dogmas of the time, just as the scientists of yore had to bow to geocentrism.

Published in: on December 19, 2020 at 8:06 pm  Comments (12)  

Queen’s gambit

This is a postscript to my previous two posts on the TV series that has been a hit worldwide. Above, D.L. Townes playing Beth Harmon in The Queen’s Gambit. But the position we saw on Netflix is actually an old study composed by a man!

In chess there’s a current World Chess Champion, Magnus Carlsen, and in a parallel universe of players there’s a Women’s World Chess Championship (WWCC). Why are there separate tournaments of chess for men and women, if according to current egalitarian doctrine the latter are supposedly as smart as men?

Because women cannot compete with men in chess.

See the names of the top 101 players in the world according to the list of the International Chess Federation. There’s only one woman, Hou Yifan, ranked #88 in that list, which means that there are 87 players with a higher rating than her. *

In a nutshell, the Netflix series The Queen’s Gambit only advances feminist lies about women.

_________

(*) This FIDE list is updated every first of the month, which means that the ratings for Hou and the top 100 male chess players are subject to change (see my comment below, in the comments section).

Published in: on November 30, 2020 at 10:45 am  Comments (2)  

My thoughts on Moly

Of the three vaporized channels on YouTube yesterday, the channels of Jared Taylor, Richard Spencer and Stefan Molyneux, Moly’s had the most subscribers around the world. I have written very critical posts about this ethnic Jew (as his mother was Jewish) and I don’t want to reiterate them here.

His greatest contribution to the Aryan cause was, in my opinion, his invitations to experts on both sides of the IQ debate. Those videos were a very good school for a normie to learn about the fundamental principles of biodiversity. Some of this can still be seen in YouTube, in his talk with David Rubin:

Rubin is also an ethnic Jew and the fag is married to another man. Perhaps that is why his channel hasn’t been vaporized by thoughtpolice?

Published in: on June 30, 2020 at 1:44 pm  Comments (8)  

Close the comments?

I may not close the comments section as I threatened recently. But I would like to say that, except for commenter Mauricio, the core of what I say here doesn’t resonate with what regular commenters post.

Years ago, for example, a certain Mister Deutsch was offended by my Nordicism and stopped commenting here. Despite his penname, the guy was an American Italian, and he once said that an Italian football player with brown skin was white. This intelligent commenter was not banned on this site: he was angered by my Nordicism and stopped commenting here.

I get the impression that commenter Stubbs, also one of the smartest who have commented here in the past, was disappointed when he found out that, like many southern Italians, my bloodline is also very compromised. But at least I am not saying, as many Mediterranean nationalists do, that ‘I am white too’ (although the colour of my skin is).

Others stopped commenting here when I criticised their admiration for Charles Manson, a subject that doesn’t horrify me, rather, I am sorry for the horrible way his mother and the American state treated him as a child. When I posted an ‘open thread on Manson’ for them to explain why he could be good for the 14 words, they didn’t comment and I closed the matter.

Regarding commenters that have been banned let’s remember Arch Stanton, who insisted on strict monocausalism (the Jews responsible for the alpha to the omega of the world’s ills), even in the threads that Jewry was not discussed. Also banned was a Christian Identitarian that wanted to sell us, in off-topic threads, the idea that the ancient Hebrews had actually been people of the Aryan race.

More recently I added Adunai to the banned list. Adunai recently mentioned me a lot on Unz Review, but as the provocative troll he is he was banned even from that tolerant webzine today. In addition to what I wrote about him in my recent post without naming him (about Stalin, etc.), this Russian liked Ramsay Bolton, who liked to skin men, women and children alive in Game of Thrones. Just imagine, my dear readers, the difference between Bran, which symbolises this site, and the Sadistic psycho Ramsay: perfect antipodes!

I just saw that Commandor, Adunai’s buddy, called Solzhenitsyn a liar a couple of days ago in Unz Review. Commandor is banned on this site because he has said similar things about Hitler and doesn’t give a damn about the suffering of the German people, that Goodrich portrayed so well in his books. From the IP today I saw that Commandor is SS Division Poltergeist and Ezra91. He also has used another sockpuppet in the comments section of this site. Like the Russian Adunai, this young Romanian seems to be my antipode as far as developing the most elemental empathy is concerned.

Now I would like to say something about a commenter that is not banned. Today I received several emails from Peter, who used to be a regular commenter on this site. As a typical anti-vaxxer he believes that covid-19 is just the flu, an international conspiracy. He has been sending me many links that, according to him, demonstrate the truth proclaimed by ‘vaccine hesitancy’ activists. I told him that I didn’t have time to read so many links and that he would better send me a link to a debate, the best way to figure out who’s wrong.

Peter sent me a linked debate where Leonard Horowitz spoke on the side of the anti-vaxxers. After listening to the debate on YouTube, I learned that Horowitz believes that AIDS and Ebola were intentionally created by the US government to manufacture vaccines, as part of a planned genocide against Muslims! Anti-racist Horowitz has even influenced black leaders to boycott vaccination programs! Peter didn’t realise what it would cause in my mind to send me a link to the debate in which Horowitz participated: the exact opposite of what he expected.

There are more cases of regular commenters who have visited this site and who maintain worldviews opposite to mine, but the cited examples provide the idea that we hold very different worldviews. (Now another man comes to mind who used to comment a lot here and even sent me money. He believes in reincarnation: a doctrine that, like all post-mortem survival doctrines, I believe is toxic for the 14 words.)

What I want to get to is that most commenters come here to dump what they believe, not to interact with what I write or quote from other writers. After ten years this dynamic of parallel universes becomes bothersome. An ideal way for the common visitor to find out about my worldview would be to read The Fair Race and Day of Wrath before commenting (the PDFs are available for free), but obviously most visitors are not going to do it.

Today I paraphrased Robert Morgan in my last tweet: ‘White Christians are spiritual Jews, minus the brains and racial pride’. It is truly a tragedy that, due to so much high IQ monk sperm ejaculated into the assholes of novices over the centuries (instead of ending up in Aryan women’s vaginas), the white race has lost the race intelligence with Jewry, who have been practicing excellent eugenics since the Middle Ages.

Now a scene from Fiddler on the Roof comes to mind in which a Jewish girl from a humble Russian town talked about the skinny son of the rabbi, with whom she fancied marrying. The equivalent in the Aryan world would be that white women were educated to admire the pundits of the alt-right to the degree of wanting to give them thousands of children. But no: in Christendom, the best sperm ended up mixed with faecal matter in the intestines of the ephebes.

It’s no wonder why high IQ whites rarely comment here…

Published in: on June 6, 2020 at 2:25 pm  Comments (20)  

Game of Thrones’ finale revisited

For the other 42 entries about the TV series that I have posted since 2013 click: here. Very few visitors have understood how I use the Bran symbol. In a nutshell, whoever sees the past knows that the lies of Christianity and World War II are a lethal cocktail for the Aryan mind (here). The fact that not even most white advocates can see it is due to psychological resistance, as Vig wisely said a year ago (here).

In May of last year Game of Thrones fans saw the grand finale. But since fans have been steeped in idiotic culture for decades, almost none understood the author’s message. By author I don’t mean the Jews who filmed the HBO interpretation of A Song of Ice and Fire but the writer George R.R. Martin: whose ideas about the grand finale, to the fury of the toxic fandom, at least the directors respected.

Originally I also failed to understand the message. But as we saw on this site a year ago when I added several posts about the finale, Martin is a sort of Plato follower in the sense that A Song of Ice and Fire tries to answer the question, ‘How can mortal men be perfect kings?’

The answer is evident in Bran Stark’s story arc, ‘Bran the Broken’. As one of the very few Martin fans guessed years before the finale, to become the philosopher-king you must not be completely human but have godly and immortal things, such as the weirwood fused into your being. This is the only type of monarchy Martin gives legitimacy: the kind where the king suffers on his journey and is almost dehumanised for the sake of his people, as in the Arthurian legend the Fisher King (French: Roi pêcheur, Welsh: Brenin Pysgotwr), also known as the Wounded King or Maimed King (Roi blessé, in Old French Roi Méhaigié, Welsh: Brenin Clwyfedig), was the last in a long line charged with keeping the Grail. Richard Wagner also played with this idea in my favourite of his operas, Parsifal.

Perceval arrives at the Grail Castle to be greeted by the Fisher King in
an illustration for a 1330 manuscript of Perceval, the Story of the Grail.

If you watch YouTube videos of reactions to the Game of Thrones finale, you will find that some fans were enthusiastic when Sam proposed democracy as the ideal form of government, but were disappointed when Sam was publicly derided by Westeros’ lords.

Democracy was not what the author had in mind, but something closer to Plato that the Neanderthal white fans who mix with blacks and muds never understood. Greg Johnson once said that IQ is dropping in America precisely because of the proliferation of inferior races and miscegenation. But the sad thing is that not even Johnson and his group understood Martin’s profound message.

Quoting Mark Twain

In his video about James Watson, Jared Taylor quotes Mark Twain, who once said: ‘There are times when one would like to hang the whole human race and finish the farce’.

Letter to the SI editor

May 17, 2018

Kendrick Frazier, Editor
Skeptical Inquirer
Dear Mr. Frazier,

In 1994 we met at the Seattle conference and in the following year you accepted an article of mine ([Full name], 1995. “Bélmez Faces Turned Out to Be Suspiciously Picture-like Images.” Skeptical Inquirer 19. 2, Mar/Apr: 4).

Although I no longer subscribe to the magazine, today I saw the articles on the CSI page about a number for this year, “A Skeptic’s Guide to Racism.”

As far as I could read online, none of the contributors seem to have a notion that, in IQ studies, both Asians and whites are ranked above blacks.

Since the publication of The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, people interested in science know that IQ studies on races are not pseudoscientific. The late scientist Philip Rushton even found other very fundamental differences between Asians, whites and blacks.

Why was none of this mentioned in Skeptical Inquirer? Is it that the contributors to the magazine do not even know what Charles Darwin himself wrote about blacks?

[Full name]
Mexico City

CC: Benjamin Radford, Deputy Editor

Published in: on May 17, 2018 at 9:55 pm  Comments (6)  

Why Europeans must reject Christianity, 5

by Ferdinand Bardamu

 
Christianity: destroyer of empires

Christianity was a key factor in Rome’s decline. When the church became the dominant institution of late classical antiquity, it became a significant drain on the economic resources of the empire. This was not a simple wealth transfer; funds for pagan temples and shrines were not simply diverted from secular coffers to finance ecclesiastical growth.

Unlike the pagan cults, the Nicene state religion was administered by a vast centralized bureaucracy, whose reach was empire-wide and whose officials were more numerous and more highly paid than those of the state. Revenue that could have been used to improve infrastructure, such as the building of roads, bridges, aqueducts and theatres went towards the building of useless structures like churches and monasteries and the feeding of “idle mouths”: monks, priests and bishops, who contributed nothing of material or economic value to the state.

This tremendous waste of resources becomes even more staggering when one considers the relatively low level of technological and scientific development in the empire. Actual labor-saving devices were rare, so productive labor was done by hand or with the help of oxen. The amount of manpower needed to feed, clothe and house the “idle mouths” of the Christian church was considerably more than what was needed for a typical official of the Roman civil service.

The enormous talents of men like Athanasius and John Chrysostom, who would have been better employed defending the empire as able generals and rulers, were instead wasted on expanding the power and influence of the church in daily life. Indeed, valuable manpower and material resources squandered in the service of “idle mouths” is a recurring theme in the history of Christianity. The Christian concern for “idle mouths” exerted a profoundly dysgenic effect on the European gene pool.

Europe’s cognitive elite, instead of passing on their genes, were encouraged to withdraw from society and embrace the spiritual discipline of perpetual chastity or virginity. This negatively affected average population IQ, leaving the church with an abundance of easily controlled and docile serfs less able to maintain the civilization around them with each passing generation. Thomas Aquinas is the prime casualty of this destructive waste of human talent. His genius would have been more profitably employed in the field of medicine or experimental physics; instead, it was foolishly squandered on angelology and other medieval superstitions.

The worst destruction inflicted on the western empire was, of course, perpetrated by Christians. The great sack of Rome in 411—considered a decisive moment in the decline of the West—was perpetrated by an Arian Christian. The sack of Rome in 455, even more devastating than the first barbarian rampage through the eternal city, was perpetrated by another Christian, who had earlier weakened the empire by seizing the province of Africa as his own personal fiefdom. And of course, the person who delivered the final coup de grace, effectively ending Roman imperial rule in the West and inaugurating the Dark Ages in western Europe, was also a Christian.

Apologists typically deny Christianity’s role in imperial decline, retorting that Byzantium survived the fall of the Latin West. Our Christian excuse-makers fail to realize that the east was richer and more populous. This allowed the Byzantine state to better absorb the tremendous internal damage caused by the depredations of the parasitical Nicene state religious cult. There are also geographical reasons for Byzantine survival. The eastern emperor had a much shorter frontier to defend. Constantinople, the imperial capital, was surrounded by a series of massive fortifications begun by Constantine and completed in the early 5th century. These were virtually impregnable to barbarian invaders. Unlike the east, the west had no second line of defense.

The Nicene state religious cult forced Rome to her knees, drawing the curtain over classical antiquity. The civilizational collapse that followed is known as the Dark Ages, when post-Roman Europe underwent a significant decline in living standards.

When Christians were at their most powerful, the roads and highways that covered the empire fell into disrepair; use of bridges and aqueducts virtually ceased; knowledge of building in stone and mortar almost disappeared; literacy, such as it was, disappeared, with the exception of the clergy; personal standards of hygiene disappeared; indoor plumbing disappeared; large areas of the former empire were depopulated, and lastly; use of coinage nearly ceased, signifying an end to the complex monied economy of Roman times.

Christian hegemony in Byzantium led to centuries of scientific and technological stagnation. There was even a Byzantine Dark Age that lasted for hundreds of years. During this period, borders shrank, cities were reduced to fortified enclaves, money gave way to barter, and Byzantine literature consisted of reams of insipid hagiography.

This was the world of Christianity: a world of profound ignorance and stupidity, where brutal men, under the guise of religion, tyrannized over a weak and helpless populace. The Dark Ages were Christianity’s gift to Europe. They were ushered in by Christians, presided over by Christians and prolonged for centuries by Christians. Europe endured one of its darkest hours when Christians were at the apogee of their power and influence.

Kriminalgeschichte, 32

Editor’s note: The author states below: ‘This provision [by Constantine] had serious consequences, as it was one of the first to deprive Jews, in practice, of owning farms’. This is how the first seeds were planted for the Jews to do what today is called ‘white collar’ jobs.

In the days of Ancient Rome the Jews still did not have an IQ superior to Whites. This policy of cornering Jews to work outside of what is now called ‘blue collar’ jobs continued until the French Revolution. Although the anti-Semitic seed of Constantine described below could be applauded by white nationalists, seeing it in perspective was a shot that backfired.

Parallel to allowing Jews in banking and usury, throughout the Middle Ages the best genes of White intellectuals ended, excuse me the crude expression, in the asses of the novices of the monasteries instead of in the fair sex. Unlike the Christians, medieval Jews never practised vows of celibacy. The artificial selection of genes that raised the IQ of the Jews at the expense of the lack of descendants of intelligent Whites (Aryan monks) was a courtesy of Christendom.

In previous chapters the author constantly used quotation marks around the word ‘pagans’. In this chapter he removed the quotation marks. Since ‘pagan’ was Christian newspeak of the 4th century, in some instances of this entry I’ll take the liberty to substitute the textual ‘pagan’ for something like ‘adepts of Greco-Roman culture’.

Below, abridged translation from the first volume of Karlheinz Deschner’s Kriminalgeschichte des Christentums (Criminal History of Christianity):

 

______ 卐 ______

 

Constantine against Jews, ‘heretics’ and pagans

The emperor was not very friendly with the Jews, surely he was greatly influenced by the permanent anti-Semitic attacks of the doctors of the Church, which we have seen in chapter 2, and the recent Synod of Elvira, which had sanctioned with very strong penances the relations between Christians and Jews, in particular the attendance to blessings of fields and banquets celebrated by Jews.

The Roman emperors were quite tolerant of Judaism; not even Diocletian tried to force them to comply with the pagan rites. But after the Council of Nicaea Constantine comes to the conclusion, reflected in an epistle to all the communities, that the Jews ‘tainted by delirium’, ‘wounded by the blindness of the spirit’, ‘deprived of the right judgment’, are ‘an odious nation’ and except for one day a year forbids them to set foot on the city of Jerusalem that he and his mother had filled with churches.

In addition, he forbade them to have slaves like Christians. This provision had serious consequences, as it was one of the first to deprive Jews, in practice, of owning farms. The Christian who Judaized was sentenced to death. In addition, Constantine renewed a law of Trajan, promulgated two hundred years before, according to which the pagan who was converted to Judaism was condemned to the stake.

Even harder was the policy against the ‘heretics’, and this already from the time of the regency, from the year 311, on the grounds that many of those who had abjured Christianity wanted to receive baptism again. This resulted in a schism with bloody repercussions that lasted for several centuries. It is at that time when the definition of ‘catholic’ as opposed to the figure of the ‘heretic’ appears for the first time in an imperial document.

The Donatists rejected the association with the State, the Constantinian alliance between the throne and the altar. They judged that they were the true Ecclesia sanctorum and that the Roman Church was the civitas diaboli. They appealed to the Christian’s beliefs by demanding greater austerity for the clergy. Constantine’s campaign against Licinius turned against the Donatists at the instigation of Bishop Caecilianus in a campaign that lasted several years, presided over by the decision to ‘not tolerate even the slightest hint of division or disunity, wherever it may be’. Moreover, in a letter from early 316 to Celsus, vicar of Africa, Constantine threatened: ‘I intend to destroy the errors and repress all the nonsense, in order and effect to offer to all the human race the only true religion, the only justice and unanimity in the worship of the almighty Lord’.

To the Donatists he took away their churches and their fortunes, exiled their chiefs and commanded troops who slaughtered men and women. The hecatomb of the adepts of Hellenism had not yet begun and Christians were already making martyrs of other Christians.

Constantine also fought against the Church of Marcion, an older church and at some point probably also more followed than the Catholic Church. Constantine prohibited the offices of the Church of Marcion even when they were held in private homes; had their images and properties confiscated, and ordered the destruction of their temples. His successors, most likely instigated by the bishops, stepped up the persecution of this Christian sect after having defamed it and by all means, including through falsifications during the 2nd and 3rd centuries. In 326, shortly after the Council of Nicaea, Constantine issued a scathing edict ‘against heretics of every kind’, in case it was authentic of course and not a figment of Eusebius.

Constantine’s actions against the ‘heretics’ set an example, but at least he respected life most of the time. After all, he did not care about religion as much as the unity of the Church on the basis of the Nicaea Council, and hence the unity of the empire. Undoubtedly, he had an exclusively political concept of religion, although religious problems always, and from the first moment, were presented in relation to social and political conflicts. In the interest of state power he promoted the unity of the Church. This, and not another, was the cause of his hatred of all kinds of discord. ‘I was sure that, if I could complete my purpose of uniting all the servants of God, I would reap abundant fruits in the public interest’, he wrote in a letter to Arius and Bishop Alexander.

In the year 330, Constantine sends a sentence against the Neo-Platonic school and even orders the execution of Sopater, who had been presiding over this school since the death of Iamblichus. The adepts of Hellenism become ‘fools’, ‘people without morals’ and their religion a ‘hotbed of discord’. Constantine’s true intention was that all humans ‘revered the one true God’ and that they forsake ‘the temples of the lie’.

While the adepts of Hellenism of the western provinces still enjoyed relative tranquillity, in the East the persecutions began after the definitive defeat of Licinius (324). Constantine forbade the erection of new statues to the gods, the worship of existing ones, and the consultation of oracles and all other forms of Greco-Roman worship.

In 326 Constantine came to order the destruction of all the images, while in the East he began the confiscation of temple properties and the plundering of valuable works of art. In his new capital, blessed on May 11, 330 after six years of work funded in part through the treasures confiscated from the temples, Constantine banned the worship and the festivals of the adepts of Hellenism and rents were no longer paid to the temples of Helios, Artemis Selene and Aphrodite.

Constantine, described as a ‘renegade’ and ‘innovator and destroyer of ancient and venerable constitutions’ by Emperor Julian, but praised by many modern historians, soon prohibited the repair of Greco-Roman temples and ordered numerous closures and destructions ‘directed precisely against those who had been most revered by the idolaters’ (Eusebius). He arranged the closing of the Serapis of Alexandria, the temple to the Sun-God in Heliopolis, the demolition of the altar of Mamre (because the Lord himself had appeared there to Father Abraham, in the company of two angels), and that of the temple of Aesculapius in Aegae, the latter being fulfilled with such diligence ‘that not even the foundations of the ancient ravings remained’ (Eusebius).

Constantine also ordered the destruction of the temple of Aphrodite on Golgotha, for the ‘great scandal’ that it represented for the believers; it was also the turn of Aphaea in Lebanon from whose sanctuary came ‘a dangerous web to hunt souls’ and which, according to the emperor, ‘does not deserve the sun to shine’. There was no stone left upon a stone; and the very famous Heliopolis was burned down and reduced to rubble by a military command.

Constantine burned Porphyry’s controversial writings. From the year 330, when Neo-Platonism was forbidden, Christians abounded in looting of temples and breaking images, as all Christian chroniclers celebrated and despite such activities having been implicitly prohibited by the Council of Elvira.

Contrary to what Christian historians would like us to believe, the emperor, naturally, was not interested in fighting face to face with the Greco-Roman culture that still held the majority in much of the empire and retained part of its strength, which of course does not mean that there were not well received ‘the small material expropriations’ (Voelkl): the stones, the doors, the bronze figures, the vessels of gold and silver, the reliefs, ‘the valuable and artistic ivory votive offerings confiscated in all the provinces’, as Eusebius highlights.

‘Everywhere they went stealing, looting and confiscating the images of gold and silver and the bronze statues’ (Tinnefeid). Constantine did not even respect the famous tripods of the fortune-teller of the sanctuary of Apollo at Delphi. The historian Kornemann notes ‘a theft of works of art as has never been seen in all of Greece’.

Even St. Jerome criticized that the city of Constantinople had been built with the booty of almost all other cities. ‘In the blink of an eye, whole temples would disappear’, rejoices Eusebius. The entire Olympus was gathered in the ‘new Rome’, where the emperor, even without daring to tear down the temples, had all the statues removed from them. The most venerated gods were installed in bath-houses, basilicas and public squares. The deified Apollo, which had been the most venerable monument in the Hellenic world, was converted into a Constantine the Great. ‘Immense riches disappeared from the coins or went to fill the empty coffers of the Church’, Voelkl reminds us.

Eusebius tells us that… the temples and sanctuaries, once so proud, were destroyed without anyone ordering it, and churches were built in their place and the old delirium was forgotten.

However, at the Easter of 337 the sovereign fell ill. First he sought remedy in the hot baths of Constantinople, and then in the relics of Lucian, protective patron of Arianism and disciple of Arius himself. Finally he received on his farm, Achyronas of Nicomedia, the waters of baptism despite his desire to take them on the banks of the Jordan in imitation of Our Lord. At that time (and until about 400) it was customary to postpone baptism until the last minute, especially among princes responsible for a thousand battles and death sentences. As Voltaire suggests, ‘they believed they had found the formula to live as criminals and die as saints’. After the baptism, which was administered by another colleague of Lucian named Eusebius, Constantine died on May 22 of the year 337.

While the Christians have almost dispensed with their common sense for praising Constantine, obviously there are very few testimonies of his critics that have reached us, among them those of the Emperor Julian and the historian Zosimus.