Idhrendur

Keeper of the Converters
104 Badges
Feb 27, 2009
10.415
1.709
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Sengoku
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • March of the Eagles
  • Victoria 2
  • 500k Club
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Imperator: Rome Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings III: Royal Edition
  • Commander: Conquest of the Americas
  • Darkest Hour
Your contrast of the Catholic teaching to Sola Fide is interesting, if only because every Protestant I know has held to what you describe as the Catholic view. Sure, your salvation is by faith (and grace) alone, but it will necessarily produce good works, which serve as evidence of faith. We all seem to assume that Catholics think that works are necessary to salvation in some way, though exactly what way that may be in unclear.

Unless I've misunderstood you, this is a little mind-blowing. Good work.
 

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
124 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.973
3.655
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Deus Vult
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
I find Congregationalism very difficult to get my head around. That is after working for about nine months for the URC ( a church that was formed from, amongst others, some Congregationalists)
 

volksmarschall

DeFi
31 Badges
Nov 29, 2008
5.861
350
minervawisdom.com
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Victoria 2
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
Having read it, now I know the formal context too, of course. Still didn't stop my mind from reading it the entirely wrong way. :D

I first learned about Mencken because one of his quotes (Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin to slit throats.) is included in the loading screen of the Darkest Hour version of Kaiserreich, it caught my eye and I started reading from there. And there are people who say video games don't teach!

How interesting. You know, video games is what led me to history. Back in the 90s when I was much younger I played several American Civil War video games that started a long movement through history culminating in my BA in American, Islamic, and Euro history with the publication of my US History thesis (condensed). While I'm by technicality a historian given publication and citation, I obviously don't do "history" in my profession anymore - philosophy, political philosophy, political theology, political anthropology now, etc. But my history library and much of my affinity for history is owed to video games. The half dozen or so books I have on Chinese history is do to Paradox games! So if you want to do a Chinese AAR any time soon and fill us in on Chinese history we'd be very thankful! :p

It's just interesting that you would have gotten to Mencken through DHKr. I have it just haven't played much of it. While I think some of his books are well worth reading, on the whole, I still think he pales compared to other more notable literati and satirists as I've said. But it's nice to see Mencken getting some love.

Your contrast of the Catholic teaching to Sola Fide is interesting, if only because every Protestant I know has held to what you describe as the Catholic view. Sure, your salvation is by faith (and grace) alone, but it will necessarily produce good works, which serve as evidence of faith. We all seem to assume that Catholics think that works are necessary to salvation in some way, though exactly what way that may be in unclear.

Unless I've misunderstood you, this is a little mind-blowing. Good work.

Well, as we all know, Protestants are, deep down, just Catholic rebels. :p Once Protestants know what the Catholic Church teaches vs. what popular misconceptions are, most convert - don't they? :p I think the confusion comes into the Catholic separation of grace and faith, or, rather, the integral unity of two. For if by "mortal sin" one is not in a state of grace but one can still have faith (as outlined in the Council of Trent). Which, in this AAR, the Council of Rodez, will be featured when we get to the part in the Counter Reformation before the big religious wars that are upcoming. NOW, OF COURSE, OUR FRENCH NARRATOR IS GOING TO HAVE SO MUCH FUN WITH THE FACT THAT THE ELDEST DAUGHTER OF THE CHURCH ALSO GOT THE COUNTER REFORMATION COUNCIL! :rolleyes:

So if you're saved by grace, which comes from faith, but are not in a state of grace upon death - the church teaches such souls are in peril. Hence the rejection of by faith alone. Without grace it's nada.

I think that confusion as to the nature of works in Catholic doctrine come from two problems. One is the anti-Catholic ignorance inherited by many Protestant denominations owing to Protestantism's historical anti-Catholicism and seeing Rome and the Papacy as apostate pagans and the anti-Christ as we briefly covered here.

The other, I think - and I stress I here (as it is my hypothesis) - is how Catholicism does teach a rewards system based on works for the faithful. (Though Catholics would cite Rom. 2:6-11 here.) Heaven, as conceived and taught by Catholicism, affirm hierarchies and levels (as one should expect from Catholicism). Dante's Divine Comedy, Paradiso, is the prime example of this. The truly faithful and, therefore, virtuous, are rewarded based on the works of faith. In the allegory, the fixed stars: mastery of the theological virtues (faith and hope and love) are closest to the Beatific Vision. Jupiter (justice) is closer than that of the Moon (inconstant or inconsistency). The basic schema is that those who did a lot of good works (evidence of their theological faith) will receive a greater reward than those who constantly struggled back and forth between sin and grace or those that came to faith and grace late in life after a "bad" life, etc. As Justinian (in Mercury, the sphere of the ambitious) said to Dante, "This little star is made more beautiful by valiant souls whose zealous deeds on earth were prompted by desire for lasting fame." The rather dim star that is Justinian is illuminated and made more beautiful by those more virtuous, "valiant" souls who are closer to God and thus radiate a greater glow (beauty and love) as a result. It's all very complex and fascinating and I sure do love Dante. (And sticking with Catholic paganism, the Latin gods/stars correspond with their attributes: Venus is the heavenly sphere for faithful lovers, Mars is for faithful defenders of the faith/warriors, Jupiter for justice, etc.)

And here I should also stress the literary genius of Dante for those who pick up on it. Why is Hell "cold" in Dante? Because it has no love and no beauty as a result (cold and dark). Why is Heaven warm and bright? Because it is filled with love and beauty. Why is Hell atomized? For rejection of the truth of family as the basis of civilization. Why is Heaven a filial city? Because this affirms the cornerstone of civilization as known by the virtuous pagans (like Aristotle) and affirmed by the filial teachings of the Catholic church.

Dante, as I've made mention in this AAR, was a devout Augustinian - he placed Augustine way ahead of other Catholic notables, alongside Mary, John the Baptist, Adam, and Moses. One can say Dante let his heroes and enemies be known throughout his poem. The other notable Augustinian heirs, Francis, is also placed in the same sphere. Dominic and Thomas got the short stick for Dante being placed all the way back in the sphere of the contemplatives (the Sun) who had mastered the cardinal virtues and exploring (but not having mastered) the theological virtues and whose main contributions were to temporal learning and wisdom while being Christians (unlike the virtuous pagans in Limbo). I must concur. Augustine > Aquinas. The Catholic Church needs to get over its weird obsession with Thomas (and Aristotle). Plato and the Christian Platonists forever!! :p

As such, I think most Protestants confuse this with "salvation by works," even though Trent is very clear: "For, if it be a grace, it is not now by works, otherwise, as the same Apostle says, grace is no more grace." You know, though, reading! :rolleyes:

But the real volksmarschall will acknowledge, for many reasons, a very odd affinity for Reformed theology. It probably has something to do with Augustine, my understanding of the psychology of sacrifice, and my boyhood.

I find Congregationalism very difficult to get my head around. That is after working for about nine months for the URC ( a church that was formed from, amongst others, some Congregationalists)

Autonomous churches that are nevertheless loosely affiliated by some greater synod or general council. United Reform Church! I do believe they are the successors, in some genealogical manner, to the Puritans!

I never quite understood the autonomous congregation being united under a synod. Anything the synod passes is non-binding. Might as well just be independent.
 

GulMacet

Colonel
37 Badges
Sep 24, 2010
1.078
281
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Stellaris: Humanoids Species Pack
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Cities: Skylines - Mass Transit
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • BATTLETECH
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines - Green Cities
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • 500k Club
  • Victoria 2
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Imperator: Rome Sign Up
  • Cities: Skylines - Campus
  • Stellaris: Ancient Relics
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Stellaris
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
So if you want to do a Chinese AAR any time soon and fill us in on Chinese history we'd be very thankful!

The thing is, all Paradox games are really bad at depicting China. In CK2, it was added relatively recently, but only squeezed in on the side. They did make an honest effort to represent China throughout the CK period, but the Tang, Song, Jin and Yuan were so different that they would have required different special mechanics each. (and you can't play as China, that makes an AAR on them rather difficult)

In EU4, same thing. They did rework it somewhat with Mandate of Heaven, but that didn't change that the primary objective of EU is Imperialism. Just not conquering things and maintaining the status quo is not an option. You have to tech up, conquer, colonize, build global trade networks etc... I can understand that, just sitting there, writing poetry and painting things like (I've been there, and it really does look like that)

%2BShitao%2B%25281641-1707%2529-%2BMounts%2BHuang%2B%25281864m%2529.jpg


would be quite pleasant, but not fun gameplay, and EU has to be a game first and a history simulator second. If anything, playing Ming should be the exact opposite of playing an European country - instead of exploring and teching and expanding and pursuing every avenue possible to get an advantage over your rivals (being a shark in a lake full of sharks, so to speak), it should be about maintaining stability and continuity in the face of massive social, technological and economical changes (being the only whale in a lake full of trout) - but I admit I have no idea how to translate that into fun gameplay.

In Victoria, China as an AI exists only as a target for British, Japanese and Russian imperialism - and if you play it, you have so much population that you can just human-wave everything the AI can throw at you. I've had an army so large that I've run out of provinces to put them without attrition - imagine a doomstack in every single province. It's ridiculous, really. The only way to somewhat accurately depict the late Qing would be to have the rest of the world play Victoria, but China plays CK2.

In Hearts of Iron, China is a very special case too. In 1936, the Communists do control Yan'an and the surrounding area, but most of them are spread out in cells throughout the country, organizing and preparing. Chiangs government has the urban elites of Shanghai and Nanjing as their powerbase, but their rule is extremely weak - the provinces are run by local warlords/military governors who base themselves out of the cities and claim loyalty to the central government, but are de-facto independent, with their own taxes, currencies and rudimentary administrations (The best analogy I've found was in The Soong Dynasty by Sterling Seagrave - a splendid book I cannot recommend enough, by the way - of the central government as a corporation, and it most certainly was run mostly to fill Chiangs personal bank account, and the local warlords as franchise-takers, with the flag, uniforms and party line as a sort of corporate identity), and the rural areas are left to their own devices, viewed by all governments only as a source of drafted peasants for their armies and taxes for their cronies. Again, no idea how to make gameplay out of that.

If you sense a running theme here, it's intentional. The various rulers of China, from Qin Shi Huang to Xi Jinping, have always been forced to expend most of their efforts on maintaining cohesion of such a huge and populous country. China is a world in itself, and what happens outside of that world is of little importance. The last few years, you may have heard a lot about OBOR and China in Africa and so forth, and many people are asking: "What are China's plans for Africa? For America? For Europe?" The answer is very simple: They are not. China certainly has effects in Africa and Europe and America, but they are only the unintentional byproducts of internal happenings. I could talk hours about what is going on between the CPC and Chinese society, or Chinese foreign policy, but that goes beyond the initial topic...

It's just interesting that you would have gotten to Mencken through DHKr.

Most of my knowledge on America has come about in a - let's not say unacademic, but unfocused - manner. In proper classes, there is a probably canon of books any Americanist scholar worth his salt must have read, but I never had any of those classes, so it was more "Hey! This looks interesting! I wonder what information I can find about that..." The result is a haphazardly jumbled pile of knowledge. :D
 

volksmarschall

DeFi
31 Badges
Nov 29, 2008
5.861
350
minervawisdom.com
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Victoria 2
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
@GulMacet

I've been to China and brought back two paintings/artwork from the country. They hang in my room, very picturesque and earth focused paintings as I'm something a major conservationist in my own philosophical disposition (one features a waterfall in a Chinese valley and the other birds next to a flower). I didn't much care for Shanghai or Beijing when I was there (though enjoyed the Forbidden City just for historical value), but greatly loved the Fuzou countryside and mountains -- of which I climbed one! Very beautiful country once getting out of the urban centers.

I've also attended Asian academic events and having talked with profession sinologists they were rather impressed by my modest knowledge of Chinese history and culture. The Book of Odes (Shijing) are wonderful. I even referenced them in my latest essay dealing with the humanities, poetry, and human nature (which is currently under review). I'm no "Sinophile" or Weeaboo (when it comes to Japan and Japanese anime) but I do appreciate the "Far East." A journal that I've published in, and have two more article contracts with (one on Augustine and one on Tolstoy) also inquired as to publishing a presentation I gave to the ASIANetwork Academic Conference concerning environmentalism and Protestantism in China, but I'm unsure I want to go back and touch up that paper and all given I have many other obligations to fulfill in the next nine months or so.

When I was presenting in Jerusalem on Jewish political theology and the political philosophy of the Tanakh, there was also a Chinese professor who taught Hebraic studies and Hebrew Bible in China, and he gave a fascinating presentation on a Chinese historian and writer - whose name escapes me - who was influenced by Carlyle's On Heroes... and had integrated it to his reading of Moses in relationship to Chinese history. We bonded over dinner when I began asking questions about Chinese history and culture, and also talking about some of things I know of Chinese history. I have his contact somewhere in my overcrowded desk!

While a huge novice with Chinese history and culture, it's a place I have some interests in and have traveled to. So your mentioning that you study China professionally piqued my interests as I don't believe you'd ever mentioned that to me before. Anyhow, thanks for this! :)
 

Nathan Madien

Field Marshal
Mar 24, 2006
4.463
38
Well, as we all know, Protestants are, deep down, just Catholic rebels. :p Once Protestants know what the Catholic Church teaches vs. what popular misconceptions are, most convert - don't they? :p

Comedian Jim Gaffigan (who is Catholic) did a bit once where he talked about the historic animosity between Protestants and Catholics and how it didn't make much sense if you thought about it. "See that person over there who has almost the exact identical beliefs that I have? I want to kill them. Because my God is all about love." :p
 

volksmarschall

DeFi
31 Badges
Nov 29, 2008
5.861
350
minervawisdom.com
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Victoria 2
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
BOOK II: THE REFORMATION

PART ONE: THE ROAD TO BABYLON


VI

The Reformation in the North

While Switzerland, Scotland southern Germany, and eventually the Dutch lowlands, along with parts of northern and central Italy, as well as France, trended Reformed, northern Germany and Danish Scandinavia trended Lutheran as the Reformation got underway. The strongest of the Reformed states, the Swiss and Dutch Confederacy, were important players in either the Evangelical-Catholic Wars (Switzerland) and the exportation of Reformed Christianity to the New World (Dutch), the strongest and most important of the continental Protestant powers in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries was the Kingdom (or Empire) of Denmark.

Although the Danes had lost their ruleship over Sweden, Danish Scania, Norway, and the Danish Far East (in the former lands of the Republic of Novgorod), were firmly entrenched in the Danish Empire. As I covered in the first book about the Renaissance in Denmark, the young King Hans II decided to nationalize the Catholic Church as Ulm had done, but following the rise of Martin Luther and the emergence of a formal school of Reformation Christianity—Lutheranism—Hans made the bid to transform his national catholic church into the Lutheran Church of Denmark. Transforming the Catholic parishes into ornate state churches, Danish Lutheranism—while plundering the Catholic monasteries—never embraced the same iconoclasm as the Reformed strands of Protestant embarked under. Instead, the Lutheran Church in Denmark simply transformed the existing Catholic structures and institutions into state churches that were the official organs of the Danish Renaissance and imperial power.

Hn4KcJu.jpg

FIGURE 1: The Coronation of the young King Hans II. Hans II, who ruled Denmark from 1509-1544. He transformed Denmark, and the House of Wittelsbach, into a continental power. He established in his breakaway from Rome “Hansian Protestantism” until the Lutheran Church of Denmark was finally formed by the 1530s. His heirs continued an aggressive policy of eastward expansion begun by Hans, as well as intervening in Europe on behalf of Protestants continental-wide, including Calvinists and Anabaptists despite Lutheran differences to Reformed and Anabaptist teachings.

The Reformation in Denmark also brought a new zeal to Danish Christianity and claims in Eastern Europe. If Catholics were damnable enough, so too were the Orthodox who were seen as even more reprobate than Catholics.

Anti-Catholicism among Protestants was common and well-known, and that was reciprocated to Protestants by Catholics. The reason for the Catholic-Protestant animosity was geographic; Protestants and Catholics lived side-by-side and Protestantism schismatically broke away from the sovereignty of the Catholic Church. But Protestant-Orthodox relations were also bad. The Synod of Jerusalem, in 1672,[1] was the official Orthodox response to the theologies of the Protestant Reformation—especially Calvinism, and officially condemned Protestant teachings as antithetical to Eastern Orthodox teachings. While Denmark fought on the side of the Evangelical Union and was the leading continental Protestant power in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, Denmark also fought against the only great Eastern Orthodox empire—the Duchy of Moscow turned Russian Empire.

Thus, the Reformation in the north—especially owing to Danish expansionist policies—found two enemies instead of one. To the south was the composite Holy Alliance of Habsburg-led Austria and the Habsburg dominions, Bohemia, and the Angevin dominions, with nominal support from the Kingdom of France, and to the east were the hyper-Orthodox Russians who stylized themselves the “Third Rome” after the fall of Constantinople and the primacy of Moscow over Constantinople among Slavic Orthodox faithful.

Among Protestant opposition to Russian (or Eastern) Orthodoxy was the supposed veneration of icons in the Orthodox tradition, the privileged place of Mary in Orthodoxy (very similar to Catholicism at the time prior to the annunciation of the Catholic doctrine of the Assumption of Mary), and the seeming anti-Scriptural attitudes of the Orthodox churches. For the Protestants of Denmark, especially Hans II and his successors, Denmark was the exceptional continental power chosen by God to bring the light of the true faith to the dark continent (Europe) and the dark outlying reaches of the continent (Russia).

Again, the phenomenon of “Bible nationalism” was common among Protestant nations. While the English have the most storied history of Bible nationalism, the Danes and Dutch equally had their own moments of vigorous Bible nationalism. But most people don’t understand what motivated Danish expansionist policies into the Russian East and unleashing a series of wars known as the Livonian Wars. Bible nationalism is not, and never was, the attempt to build a literal kingdom of God for Christ on earth. Rather, as I already mentioned concerning Anglo-Saxon Protestant exceptionalism, it was the idea rooted in a particular (anti-ecclesiastical) reading of the Bible were God worked through nations of men instead of a church and this continued today with specially chosen nations to carry out the Divine Mandate to baptize the nations and teach them the ways of God. The injunction to baptize and teach the nations was not a call to “save souls” as modern Evangelicalism renders it, but a legal injunction to teach the peoples of the world the laws and ways of life instead of death. Old Testament Israel was the first nation chosen to do this when God told the Israelites in Deuteronomy that he had set before them the ways of life and death and implored them, but did not force them, to choose life. The same carried forth to the present the rise of the Protestant nations. Thus, Bible nationalism was concerned with understanding a peoples and their nation as elected by God to be the witnesses to the Law and to spread the Law of God which will bring life into the lifeless world. It was also concerned with cultivating loyal citizenship—something that some historians consider to be a ploy of the newly independent and powerful kingdoms having broken away from the authority of Rome. It was also concerned with seeing “good Christian rulers” head the corporate body of that was nationhood more than just saving “individual” souls. This explains the Protestant emphasis on baptizing chiefs and lords just as had been done for a thousand years of Christian missionizing practices: The baptism of the king, chief, or lord represented the spiritual baptism of all the people. Just as Christ was baptized for his people the lord or king of a nation was baptized for his people and brought under the headship of Christ.

5pokNzA.png

SCREENSHOT 1: The Danish Far East, Livonia, and Russia ca. 1616, 13 years after the death of Louis-Joseph I and a year after the end of the “Fourth Livonian War” which saw the establishment of the Duchy of Moscow into the Tsardom of Russia—thus marking the rise of Russia as a great power and another century of Danish-Russian wars. Due to the presence of Denmark in the Russian West, or the Danish East, parts of northwestern Russia still have a persistent Danish-speaking and Lutheran minority.

For the Danes, the Russians—being part of the Eastern Orthodox tradition—had never really been baptized. Thus, it was the mission of the Danes to bring the light of the gospel into the Russian East. They were met by a fierce nationalism emerging from Moscow which saw itself, after the collapse of Kiev and then Novgorod, as the protector of the Russian peoples and the preserver of the ancient faith of the apostles especially after the fall of Constantinople.

The Reformation in Denmark and Norway transformed the Kingdom of Denmark into a world power. As the Danes saw themselves as the continental protector of the Protestant peoples across Europe, Denmark was eventually pulled into the Evangelical Wars when Habsburg-led Austria invaded Bavaria and other south German Evangelical Union states to reassert Catholicism over the princes and dukes. Pope Paul II, originally the Cardinal-Bishop of Nice, was important in orchestrating the Angevin Dominions to come to the aid of the “Catholic faithful” in the war, thus bringing France and Denmark into conflict in Germany for territorial, political, and religious reasons all the same.

Wherever Denmark spread, Lutheranism came with it. As was the case in the ancient Near East thousands of years ago, up through today, the practice of cultural imperialism was continued through religious means. Whenever the ancient Mesopotamians conquered their enemies, looting of the local temples was a common practice—reflective of the belief of the triumph of the gods over other gods. When conquering nations sought to eradicate the identity of a conquered people, targeting religion was first on the chopping block. As such, as Denmark expanded, Lutheran churches were built to symbolize the Danish presence wherever they went. Great buildings and houses of worships remain as a result, even long after the Danish retreat from their once far-reaching empire.

KaG3qRD.jpg

FIGURE 2: The Lutheran (Danish) Church of St. Catherine (of Alexandria) in St. Petersburg Russia, a remnant of Lutheran-Danish culture identity and imperialism from the sixteenth century.[2]

[1] Historical date used for this writing.

[2] Historically, many of the Lutheran (and Catholic) churches existing in Russia today were built after Peter the Great’s decree in the early 1700s that Protestantism and Catholicism could be practiced by the non-Russian orthodox peoples of the Russian Empire. While Protestantism and Catholicism never enjoyed the privileged status of the Russian Orthodox Church, and while Protestants and Catholics were forbade converting Russians, non-Russians were free to practice their “foreign faith” in Russia until the Communist Revolution when the Christian purges in the Soviet Union commenced in the 1920s. Lutheran presence in northwest Russia is thus re-written to fit according to the game's development.
 
Last edited:

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
124 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.973
3.655
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Deus Vult
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
Nice to see some focus on Denmark
 

Idhrendur

Keeper of the Converters
104 Badges
Feb 27, 2009
10.415
1.709
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Sengoku
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • March of the Eagles
  • Victoria 2
  • 500k Club
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Imperator: Rome Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings III: Royal Edition
  • Commander: Conquest of the Americas
  • Darkest Hour
I'm surprised to see Livonia doing so well, given Russia actually being formed.
 

volksmarschall

DeFi
31 Badges
Nov 29, 2008
5.861
350
minervawisdom.com
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Victoria 2
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
APPENDIX OF IMAGES 2A


wCnpaZm.jpg

FIGURE 32: Martin Luther. Martin Luther was a former Catholic monk turned drunkard who half-heartedly joked that drinking cures all evils, was the real powder keg of the Protestant Reformation. While the Catholic Church in Ulm separated, followed up by the decision of Hans II in Denmark to “nationalize” his Catholic Church, it wasn’t until Martin Luther posted his 95 Theses that the modern Reformation began. Soon afterward Luther and a cadre of other German clerics formed together and developed the theology that bears his name: Lutheranism. Lutheranism stressed total depravity (including the bondage of the will), rather than corruption of the will; repentance rather than penance; and subordination to political sovereignty rather than church intrusion into state affairs. Some scholars believe the statist political theology developed by Luther and his milieu was the result of the princes forcing Luther’s hand. Nevertheless, Lutheranism spread rapidly and became the established “state church” of Denmark (and Norway), Brandenburg, Brunswick, the Palatinate, and Ulm. Lutheranism was the dominant faith of central and northern Germany, along with Scandinavia (except Sweden which remained steadfastly Catholic), and the small principalities of southwestern Germany; after the Evangelical Wars Lutheranism remained the dominate faith of northern Germany, Denmark, Norway, and southwestern Germany.

LYYysCN.jpg

FIGURE 33: Pope Boniface IX. Boniface IX reigned as Holy Father from 1530-1551 and inaugurated the Counter Reformation, the Catholic response to Protestantism, with the calling of the Council of Rodez in France. Although the Council had not yet finished its work by the time of his death, Boniface was instrumental in establishing the Catholic response to Lutheranism, Anglicanism, and Calvinism, as well as being an important player in the Italian Wars which took on a religious dynamic when northern Italians embraced the Reformed faith. Boniface continued the policy of “French appeasement” established by Clemens VII who had crowned Charles, Duke of Anjou, King of Catalonia—officially elevated the Angevin apanage into a sort of composite monarchy.

V12wR5K.jpg

FIGURE 34: Mustafa I of the Ottoman Empire in a victorious pose. Mustafa “the Magnificent” reigned for 38 years, from 1553-1591. His reign coincided with that of Louis-Joseph I, 1553/1565-1603. Mustafa’s armies and navy expanded into Central Europe, conquering Buda in 1571, and sacked Genoa in 1551.

T8YaJPu.jpg

FIGURE 35: Dictator and “Protector” Adriano da Navi of the Sublime Republic of Genoa. Genoa was the rival of Venice among the Italian states for control of the Mediterranean and an important ally of the French during the Italian Wars. The Genoese victory during the Battle off Malta (see 1.2.8) cemented the Franco-Genoese Alliance and established peace and stability desperately needed for the Genoese regime. Navi, a hero of war and sail, saw himself as the new Julius Caesar. Machiavelli also wrote to the dictator expressing his approval of his actions and political goals. Genoa soon found itself after his death embroiled in a conflict with the Ottoman Empire that would severely weaken its power after the disastrous defeat at Gorgona Scalo (see FIGURE 6 in Appendix 1A).

E1gOMKo.jpg

FIGURE 36: “Yolande du Quenoy” by Titian.[1] Although of minor aristocracy, she captured the heart of the last the House of Valois-Anjou Nicholas I. Nicholas’ two sons: Joseph and Louis, both died in tragic accidents. Some argue that Yolande had both killed in order to secure the throne for Louis-Joseph who was born out of wedlock with Yolande’s lover Prince Guilhem d’Audiffredi. Due to the mysterious nature of Louis-Joseph’s birth and ascension to the throne, Louis-Joseph worked tirelessly with court painters, historians, and the Catholic Church to cast himself as the legitimate heir to the Angevin throne and became an fervent patron and supporter of the Catholic Church and cemented the de-facto alliance between France and the Papal States during the Counter Reformation and was the leader of the Holy Alliance against Mustafa I.

vuW1Zmr.jpg
7h0gg3R.png

FIGURE 37: “Louis-Joseph at Novara.” The Battle between the French and Swiss at Novara (1573) was part of the Fourth Italian War, and the second and decisive war between the Italian Protestant League (Switzerland, Milan, and Modena, along with Italian Calvinist rebels and backed by Catholic Venice) against the Catholic League led by France (Angevin-led), Genoa, and the Papal States. The Battle of Novara brought a swift conclusion to the war and inaugurated the era of “Swiss non-intervention.” As part of the peace between France and the Calvinist Swiss Confederacy, Catholics in Switzerland were allowed to practice their faith freely though no changes to the privileged establishment of the Swiss Reformed churches were made. Swiss Catholics remained ever faithful to the House of Quenoy as a result, and the “Swiss Guard” was formed immediately afterward in 1574.

UJ6tsDK.jpg

FIGURE 38: Pope Saint Alexander VII, another one of the “Angevin Popes.” Originally the Cardinal-Bishop of Angers, Alexander VII organized the Catholic Holy Alliance against the Ottoman Empire after the conquest of Buda by Ottoman forces in 1571. France, Spain, Genoa, the Papa States, Naples, Hungary (and Croatia) served as the “Catholic Wall” against further Ottoman intrusion into Europe. This set the stage for the rivalry between Louis-Joseph I and Mustafa I. Pope Alexander, prior to being elected to the Bishop of Rome, was the Cardinal Minister to Louis-Joseph. During his papacy the Italian Protestants were crushed, the Evangelical Wars began in Germany, and the Catholic alliance against the Ottoman Empire established. He was declared a saint in 1711.

wgitMOk.jpg

FIGURE 39: The Battle of Munich. The Battle of Munich, 1579, between Habsburg Austria and the Duchy of Bavaria started the Evangelical Wars that ravaged much of Europe. The Bavarian Duke, Maximillian, was forced out by Reformed patriots. Maximilian fled to Vienna to ask for help to retake his duchy and re-impose the Catholic faith. Calvinist Bavaria (mostly in the western regions) soon found itself invaded by a much larger Catholic army blessed by Alexander VII. Catholic German expatriates joined with the invading Habsburg army to form the “German Catholic Union.” Other German states soon came to the support of Bavaria which escalated the conflict. Eventually, Denmark found itself embroiled in the wars as well once Habsburg troops marched north toward Berlin to fight Brandenburg and the northern German Protestant princes appealed to the Danes to help “their fellow Christians in arms.”

bWGAJeB.jpg

FIGURE 40: “Pope Alexander VII Gives a Blessed Sword to Duke Maximilian of Bavaria.”


[1] Actual painting by Titian is “Diana and Callisto.” This version has been cropped to focus on Diana as Yolande for the purposes of this AAR.
 
Last edited:

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
124 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.973
3.655
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Deus Vult
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
As ever some wonderful artistic choices
 

Idhrendur

Keeper of the Converters
104 Badges
Feb 27, 2009
10.415
1.709
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Sengoku
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • March of the Eagles
  • Victoria 2
  • 500k Club
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Imperator: Rome Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings III: Royal Edition
  • Commander: Conquest of the Americas
  • Darkest Hour
Heh, that description of Luther is showing our narrator's bias again. :)

Though (to the best of my knowledge) he's not wrong on any of his facts, just presenting them in a negative manner.
 

volksmarschall

DeFi
31 Badges
Nov 29, 2008
5.861
350
minervawisdom.com
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Victoria 2
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
BOOK II: THE REFORMATION

PART ONE: THE ROAD TO BABYLON


VII Aesthetics and Iconoclasm

In Catholicism and Orthodoxy there is an understanding that Beauty will bring about the salvation of the world. The role of beauty in Catholic and Orthodox Christianity is well known and visible—something that Protestant iconoclasts targeted as a form of idolatry and the worship of images like the pagans of old and the Ba’al worshippers of the Old Testament. Invariably, the lower church Protestants like Anabaptists and Calvinists waged a long and arduous war against Protestant “iconolatry.” Zwingli, for instance, only after stripping a cathedral barren, said, “At last we have a beautiful church to preach in.”[1]

The Catholic emphasis on beauty and truth came largely from Augustine and his reevaluation of aesthetics from within the Platonic tradition. Platonism, historically, considered the material world a poor manifestation of the Forms, of which Beauty is one of the Forms. In Plotinus, the material world, as it exists, is essentially ugly. Only through introspection and reason, can we come to know to Beauty. There is a dualistic tension in Platonism that the Manicheans and Gnostics, in early Christianity, also struggled with. Is the material world evil as Marcion of Sinope thought? Or is the material world good and beautiful? Ultimately, Plato and Plotinus told us that Beauty, in an idealized Form, exists, but we can only know that Beauty through introspection and that it doesn’t really find itself in the material world, which is essentially ugly in form.

To an extent, Augustine agreed with Plato and Plotinus. He agreed introspection is necessary to come to understand beauty. He agreed that Beauty exists, but rather than in the Forms, it also exists in the material world. Augustine’s Christianity prevented him from taking the view of the Gnostics and Manicheans concerning the ugliness and evilness of the material world. In De Genesi ad Litteram, Augustine’s commentary on the Book of Genesis, Augustine stakes out a new position that became the official stances in Catholic and Orthodox philosophy. The world is itself good, so too is everything that exists in the world, and more importantly, the material world itself has an intrinsic beauty to it that can be appreciated and point one to God. Augustine believes that beauty and happiness is the highest telos humans can strive for, to be happy is to be a flourishing human. Beauty and Love play integral roles in experiencing happiness according to early Christianity. (In fact, they are integrally related and cannot be separated.)

ikdhjvp.jpg

FIGURE 1: Plotinus as featured in Raphael’s “School of Athens.” Augustine never read Plato directly. Augustine knew of Plato’s teachings and dialogues and neo-Platonic thought through the father of neo-Platonism: Plotinus, and Plotinus’ students. Christian neo-Platonism dominated the early church and is, therefore, the philosophical cornerstone of Catholic traditional teaching and outlook concerning the world. Plotinus’ project included the synthesis of Aristotle and Plato—so despite the name “neo”-Platonism, neo-Platonism very much embodied much of Aristotle long before Aristotle’s prominence in Scholastic theology and philosophy.

Emmanuel Chapman, back in 1941, published an influential and important essay that explained Augustine’s philosophy of beauty. In it he argued that Augustine understood: the artist cannot create out of nothingness like God, but he continues God's creation by realizing in matter the forms which he brings to completion. The artist does not copy God’s creation, but finishes and completes it. What Chapman meant, and what Augustine means, is that stone, marble, and wood have some intrinsic beauty as creation, however, when brought together, henosis, stone, marble, and wood can express an even greater beauty.

Love is also an expression of beauty; an acceptance of beauty. To love beauty is very much an important aspect in the philosophy in early Christianity. To love the beauty of music. To love the beauty of the natural world (a major theme in not just Augustine, but also St. Francis of Assisi). To love the animals of the world. To love the beauty of even human constructions: bridges, arches, churches, temples, etc. To be drawn to beauty, in all of its forms: world, nation, community, church, kin, music, art, buildings, etc. is itself a manifestation and reflection of love (loving to be drawn to beauty), by which we also experience happiness.

For example, Augustine considered love of country to be a natural and pristine manifestation and reflection of the natural law of love. We know this through the general principles of rationality. (This idea is not unique to Augustine, it is previously found in Cicero.)

The Catholic and Orthodox Churches both teach, in accordance with their philosophies of beauty and love that love of one’s patrie (country) “is a virtue, and it belongs to the precisely to the virtue of piety, as it is considered part of the filial cult that we owe to the principles of our being, to the creators of our lives and formation…the source of love of fatherland is God himself.” In both traditions there is a beauty in the love of one’s country which is known through reason and natural law. (Interestingly enough, both Catholicism and Orthodoxy expand the Fourth Commandment: Thou shall honor your father and mother to also mean one’s country, which is father and mother to you.) The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains, “It is the duty of citizens to contribute along with the civil authorities to the good of society in a spirit of truth, justice, solidarity, and freedom. The love and service of one's country follow from the duty of gratitude and belong to the order of charity” (no. 2239).

Additionally, Augustine rebuked fifth-century iconoclasts for their insistence on destruction and tearing down altars and icons (his target was the Donatists in this specific example; made somewhat ironic given Augustine’s privileged place among the Protestant fathers). Contrary to John Calvin who said Augustine was an iconoclast, Augustine was not an iconoclast. In Sermons 23 and 53, and the City of God, Augustine defends the veneration of icons as beautiful, as well as the love and happiness that stem from the beauty of the body and material world (though we often lack the reason and grace to understand that beauty). Augustine accosts those who would destroy in the name of “truth” and “beauty” as having truth and beauty backward. There is nothing beautiful, or truthful, in tearing down foundations and destroying things that one “dislikes.” (This idea also influenced how Augustine treated the Greek and Latin sources, while he certainly rebukes ideas and concepts that he finds at odd with Christianity, he nevertheless inherits, modifies, and preserved, much of classical Greek and Latin thought.)

Recognizing beauty where there is beauty, love where there is love, and not confusing love with hate, and destruction with beauty, is the first step, so to speak, in fulfilling your telos. Because according to Augustine, happiness comes from Beauty because it is Beautiful in of itself. Insofar that this is true and that happiness comes from Beauty because it is Beautiful, Beauty has an integral role in bringing forth the fulfillment of happiness. Everything is meant to reflect this Beauty, because from Beauty we derive love and happiness.

St. John of Damascus, who lived in the midst of the eighth century Iconoclast Controversy and is one of the most important late patristic fathers, wrote his magisterial defense of icons in Christianity (and Judaism by extension) Three Treatises on the Divine Images. In it, John of Damascus followed Augustine in a three-fold defense of the beauty of images: First he outlines how the images are not “worshipped” as many iconoclasts (and later Protestants) claimed. On the contrary, the images pointed us back to God, who created the material world. Ergo, like Augustine, there is an intrinsic beauty to materiality and that material images direct us to God, the source of all Beauty. Second, the Old Testament, esp. in Exodus and Leviticus, has images and symbols, vestments, and the golden ark, all as signs that point to God. “Idols”, not images, are condemned. (In the sense that idols are “false gods” and that images are simply signs that point to God, and that such signs and images should be beautiful because God is beautiful.) Third, the Incarnation is itself an image—it allowed the invisible God to become visible. That God became incarnate into the world and took on human flesh was the ultimate image of God. God revealed himself in the person of Jesus of Nazareth. An even greater beauty and holiness came to materiality in the incarnation. Thus, to deny the images, and to break the images, was a denial and cursing of God.

KEwTu1P.jpg

FIGURE 2: St. John of Damascus, author of Three Treatises on the Divine Images written during the Byzantine iconoclast controversy where the Episcopate of Constantinople initially supported iconoclasm (under the stewardship of Patriarch Anastasius) while the Episcopate of Rome disapproved. The Council of Hieria (754) supported the iconoclast position but was rejected by Catholicism and eventually by the Eastern patriarchs who ignored the council writings despite having been summoned by the Byzantine emperor. Iconoclasm and the rift between Rome and Constantinople is generally dated back to the Council of Hieria among other things and given Rome’s position to the eventually affirmed orthodoxy and Constantinople’s waffling back and forth, Rome declared itself to be free of error because it was the unquestionable inheritor of the Petrine commission.
The point in John of Damascus was to defend the inherent beauty of materiality and material images against those who destroyed things beautiful in the name of inverted “truth.” John of Damascus saw iconoclasm not as “truth” but a privation of reason and beauty, and thus also a privation of truth. What was truthful, let alone beautiful, of destroying altars, icons, and other images.

What emerged from this tradition in early Christianity is that beauty will save the world. Imagination and creativity can be, and ought to be, beautiful. In Sermon 110, Augustine stated, “Your imagination lets it fill realm after realm of space, all the vastness you can conceive of.” The aesthetical imagination is essential to experiencing beauty and love. From which happiness flows.

***

Of course, Protestants—and here I largely mean Anabaptists, low church Anglicans, dissenting Anglicans, and Calvinists, as Lutherans largely inherited from Catholicism the high ornate iconography as legitimate—reacted militantly to icons as strictly forbidden and evidence of Babylonian worship on the part of Catholics. The phenomenon of iconoclasm is nothing particularly new in Christianity, though doctrinal and historical Christianity always affirmed the proper use of icons and images. The phenomenon of Protestant iconoclasm is more peculiar.

While there is the obvious theological war between militant iconoclasts and ornate Catholic (Babylonian worshippers in the iconoclastic mind), there are other factors that moved the iconoclastic movement. Perhaps the most significant was the fact that the Reformation was millenarian in character, egalitarian (priesthood of all believers), and simplistically utopian in outlook. Expecting the final battle on the horizon, and seeing themselves as the New Israelites engaged in a new struggle against the worshippers of Ba’al, like Ezekiel and Samson the Protestants saw the icons of Catholicism as a profane pollution of God’s holy temple and that they, like Samson, were called to destroy the temples of the false gods. Jesus, after all, did not forgive the money-changers but drove them out for their sacrilegious profaning of God’s temple.

The latitudinal and egalitarian, as well as millenarian, disposition of iconoclastic Protestants, was at odds with the aesthetical hierarchy of Catholicism. Moreover, the historicist imagination of sixteenth century Protestantism ensured that they saw the images and paintings of Catholicism as nothing short of the worst reiteration of Ba’al worship. The iconoclastic attitude of Protestantism and its association of icons with Mesopotamian religious worship has, thus, had far-reaching consequences. When John Bunyan, of Pilgrim’s Progress fame, casts Pope and Pagan in a Cave together, with Pagan dead and Pope dying of wounds, only for Pagan to be revived and Pope healed and hound the protagonist (named Christian, how convenient), his intent was clear.[2] Roman Catholicism was the new iteration of Paganism.

dDw4lrF.gif

FIGURE 3: Calvinists iconoclasts tearing down statues in a Catholic church.

But the battle to cleanse the pollution of God’s temple certainly did motivate Protestant iconoclasm given the historicist nature of Protestantism. Expecting the cleansing of the temple to begin the Second Coming, the urgency added to militant iconoclasm ensured the struggle between Protestants and Catholics would only increase rather than decrease. And what a different approach the two sides struck. Catholics were busy being the patrons of the arts and producing ornate statues, paintings, and building grand cathedrals and other churches to display their cultural, aesthetic, and political prowess and power. Protestants, on the other hand, favored the plain, egalitarian, and simple style that shunned “worldly things,” and in their destruction of Catholic houses of worship they were displaying their own power.


[1] Actual quote.

[2] I do want it to be known that real volksmarschall does not hold Bunyan’s classic in any contempt.


SUGGESTED READING

Alain Besançon, The Forbidden Image

John Bunyan, The Pilgrim’s Progress

Carlos Eire, Reformations

_______. War against the Idols

*Professor Eire, who teaches at Yale, is considered the supreme authority of the Reformation in the English-speaking world. I know him personally.

St. John of Damascus, Three Treatises on the Divine Images
 

Idhrendur

Keeper of the Converters
104 Badges
Feb 27, 2009
10.415
1.709
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Sengoku
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • March of the Eagles
  • Victoria 2
  • 500k Club
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Imperator: Rome Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings III: Royal Edition
  • Commander: Conquest of the Americas
  • Darkest Hour
As strongly Protestant as I am, I very much believe my predecessors got it wrong on this account. I may be somewhat influenced by my doing the tourist thing in Paris this week and having just seen a cathedral and planning to visit the Louvre today.
 

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
124 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.973
3.655
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Deus Vult
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
This makes me smile, as Protestant iconoclasm (not that I called it that at the time) is very much one reason for my conversion to Catholicism.
 

volksmarschall

DeFi
31 Badges
Nov 29, 2008
5.861
350
minervawisdom.com
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Victoria 2
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
As strongly Protestant as I am, I very much believe my predecessors got it wrong on this account. I may be somewhat influenced by my doing the tourist thing in Paris this week and having just seen a cathedral and planning to visit the Louvre today.

Well, at least some of the Presbyterians still saved the Cathedrals they transformed. So there's that! :p

This makes me smile, as Protestant iconoclasm (not that I called it that at the time) is very much one reason for my conversion to Catholicism.

Beauty will save the world, no? ;)

However, if I can protest, it is the Protestant destruction of mystery and enchantment that is the real problem! People crave mystery. Are naturally drawn to it. No matter what. Mysterious Good. Mysterious Neutral. Mysterious Evil. Mystery is alluring, enticing, and seductive. Rudolf Otto's numinous and mysterium tremendum is on point!
 

volksmarschall

DeFi
31 Badges
Nov 29, 2008
5.861
350
minervawisdom.com
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Victoria 2
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
BOOK II: THE REFORMATION

PART ONE: THE ROAD TO BABYLON


VIII

The Beginnings of the Evangelical Wars

With conflicts abounding between renegade revolutionary Protestants and the Catholic hierarchy and establishment, and as I have made mention of the political dynamic involved with regard to the Reformations in England, Ireland, and Denmark, the reformation in Germany is where the first signs of brutality emerged and the conflict came to a fore. Northern Germany had embraced Lutheranism, while southern Germany, owing to a Swiss influence, moved in the direction of Reformed Calvinism. It wasn’t long until Swiss itinerant preachers were crossing the border and young German rebels were headed to Geneva to learn from Calvin himself and returning to southern Germany with the message of total depravity and supralapsarian election. While eastern Germany remained firmly aligned with the Habsburgs and the Roman church, as did Saxony, the curious case of the Duchy of Bavaria sparked off the storm winds of war.

Bavaria became the battleground between Habsburg imperial authority and Catholic-Protestant sectarianism. Duke Maximilian, a great patron of the arts and the church, was forced out by Reformed patriots and fled into nearby Salzburg before making safe passage to Vienna and petitioning before the Habsburg Court to help reclaim his ducal throne and expel the Protestants. In response to Maximilian’s actions, the newly established Council of Bavaria* approached neighboring Protestant states for support. The Palatinate and Wurzburg and Brunswick all pledged their support for the emerging Protestant establishment and the election of Prince Albert Gravenreuth as the new head of the duchy in Maximilian’s absence.

5u7F8oi.jpg

FIGURE 1: Duke Albert of Bavaria, the Calvinist ruler, or pretender, to the Bavarian lands when the Evangelical Wars began.
There was, of course, greater continental interests at play. Denmark and Brandenburg, the two most powerful Protestant states, alongside the Swiss Confederacy, saw the emerging conflict as means to their own ends. For Denmark, the Evangelical Wars would redirect their attentions from the Far East into central Europe. It would also help pave the way for Denmark to becoming a great power and the undisputed Protestant power on the continent. For Brandenburg, the war also signaled the fragility of the Holy Roman Empire and their role in forming a new counterbalance to Catholic Habsburg authority. Brandenburg was interested in seeing a bloody war tire the Austrian Court and its monopoly of power—while the first campaign of the Evangelical War was fought in southern Germany, the successive campaigns that embroiled central Europe and Bohemia would see Brandenburg emerge as the de facto steward of the Protestant princes in the Holy Roman Empire.

On the flip side of Protestant politicking their remained Catholic politicking. The House of Wittelsbach, seeing itself devout and strongly Catholic, started the war by seeking Habsburg aid in reclaiming their ancestral lands which had been overrun by Protestants. The origins of the war were not theological but political,[1] it was only after the war had begun that theological justifications were issued by both sides. The Catholic Church, not wanting its reputation and power damaged further, gave Maximilian and the “Catholic Alliance” of Habsburg Austria, Bohemia, Alsace, and Angevin France (nominally) their blessing. Catholic volunteers from Protestant lands also joined the ranks of the Catholic armies attempting to reclaim “the lands baptized by Christ and his Church.”

Thus, modern Europe was defined, by my estimation, by a handful of events. First was the Protestant Reformation. Thomas Carlyle, that great Scottish historian, was right in identifying Protestantism as one of the pillars of modernity. Second was the revival of the Angevin Dynasty, brought to fruition by the House of du Quenoy. Third was the Evangelical Wars that raged across central Europe and the contingent sectarian conflicts embodied in the Catholic-Protestant divide that led to the establishment of the Treaty of Vienna and the Viennese Order in Europe.[2] Fourth was the Ottoman invasion of central and eastern Europe and the Battle of Lefkada between the Franco-Spanish Catholic fleet and the Ottoman fleet which determined the fate of the central and western Mediterranean Sea. Fifth was the colonization of North America and all the consequences that stemmed from this conflict in New World imperialism between Spain, Britain, the Dutch Confederacy, France, and Portugal.

While I have not listed the Counter Reformation, which will be the subject of the second part of this volume, the reasons for this is that the Counter Reformation was purely intellectual in matters with little ramification to the material, political, and economic development and paradigm shifts that occurred between 1500-1800. This is not to discount the importance of the Counter Reformation – but it is to show how it was subjected to more important events. Given that the Counter Reformation occurred in Rodez, France, the Counter Reformation is best seen as being a contingent outgrowth of the Protestant Reformation (the necessary dialectical response to) and the Angevin Revival (being chosen to occur in France because of Angevin lobbying).

mFpRKag.jpg

FIGURE 2: The Catholic Army, predominately made up of Austrians and Catholic volunteers from German Protestant lands, encamped outside of Salzburg about to march into Bavaria and start the Evangelical Wars. Bavarian Catholics constituted the largest single force of Catholic volunteers during the “Bavarian Campaign” of the Evangelical Wars.

Nevertheless, when the Catholic army crossed into Bavaria in 1572 and inaugurated the Evangelical Wars, the deadly fighting that resulted from this has been the subject of many other works which I will draw upon. I endeavor to focus on the Evangelical Wars in the third part of this volume but felt it was necessary to set the stage for this “Babylonian Captivity” by ending the first part with the origins of that conflict that I will explore in greater detail in the third and final part of this second volume book before heading into the rise of the great Quenoy Family of Anjou.



*Fictional. In-game Maximilian I was still the rightful duke over Bavaria. For in-game developments and purposes, I have re-written the transition of Bavaria into a Reformed state and the resulting Evangelical Wars in the manner described above.

[1] The same could be said of the Thirty Years’ War which the “Evangelical Wars” of this timeline mirror.

[2] Equivalent to our Peace of Westphalia and “Westphalian Order.”
 
Last edited:

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
124 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.973
3.655
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Deus Vult
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
Religious wars can be so brutal.
 

Idhrendur

Keeper of the Converters
104 Badges
Feb 27, 2009
10.415
1.709
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Sengoku
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • March of the Eagles
  • Victoria 2
  • 500k Club
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Imperator: Rome Deluxe Edition
  • Crusader Kings III: Royal Edition
  • Commander: Conquest of the Americas
  • Darkest Hour
No comments, but it's always nice to see an update!
 

volksmarschall

DeFi
31 Badges
Nov 29, 2008
5.861
350
minervawisdom.com
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Victoria 2
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
Religious wars can be so brutal.

This one was, although another war - with a religious dynamic to it that we'll cover later - was equally if not more brutal and has been alluded to many times already! War makes the world go round! :p

No comments, but it's always nice to see an update!

It's refreshing to be able to update from time to time when I have the spare time between my ever increasing obligations and contracts to fulfill! :rolleyes: