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Western Civilisation

Until the advent of materialism and 19th c. dogma, Western Civilisation was  superior to anything Islam had developed.  Islam has not aided in the development of the modern world; in fact civilisation has only been created in spite of Islam.  Proof of this resides in the 'modern' world and the unending political-economic and spiritual poverty of Muslim states and regions.  Squatting on richer civilisations is not 'progress'.  Islam is pagan, totalitarian, and irrational.   

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Friday, July 9, 2021

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The Catholic Enlightenment, by Ulrich L. Lehner

The forgotten history of a Global movement

by Ferdinand III



The ‘Enlightenment’ which replaced a culture of reason and faith working together, in an effort to understand the world of the 5 senses, the material and immaterial, was a reductionist program where only the material mattered.  The idol of materialism became God, and everything was refracted through this idol worship to permeate all aspects of society.  Dogma replaced science.  The religious canons of evolution, long ages, abiogenesis, plant food causes climate, or the need to inject experimental poisons into humans to counter a 99.9% survival rate flu; all find their genesis, their old testament books, in the ‘Enlightenment’.


To further the fraudulent claim of ‘Enlightenment’ displacing a medieval darkness, the Enlighteners were never honest enough to even give credit to medieval institutions or the Church, for their ‘progressive’ ideals.  Indeed, many ‘ideas’ and beliefs from the Enlighteners are purloined from the Catholic Church.  As Ulrich states:


“Yet a closer look at history reveals the many progressive reforms within the Catholic Church predate even the Enlightenment.  Some of the most cherished values of modernity can be traced to the pre-Enlightenment Catholic Reform that began in the sixteenth century.  The rejection of arranged marriages originated in the Catholic Reform movement, as did prohibitions against domestic abuse, criticism of the denigration of women, and also the protection of the indigenous tribes of South and Middle America, and much else.”


As Ulrich outlines the Catholic Reform or Enlightenment movement, predates the secular-Atheist-Deist Enlightenment movement by some 100 years at least.  The Protestant revolution and nationalism which it promoted, lead to the division of Europe and the crumbling of the unitary Catholic culture which had formed the basis for the Continent’s prosperity and eventual world-domination.  To counter the Protestant heresy the Catholic leadership responded with a long conclave held in the city of Trent Italy, which lasted from 1545 to 1563.  Many reforms issued forth, including the requirement that Priests be educated, the codification of the Catholic canon and beliefs, the stress on human freedom, the optimistic view that humans through free will and could accept or reject God’s grace and could even perform good deeds without faith or divine guidance.  These and other doctrines emanating from the Council of Trent, were the foundations of the later Enlightenment obsession about human freedom and individuality.  Indeed, natural law rights and human free will finds great expression in the works of St. Thomas Aquinas, in the 13th century.  The Council of Trent was carrying on a very long tradition of reform and elevation of human rights and free-will.


This council also generated energy and initiative.  Reforms throughout the church including schools, the parishes, all of the various appenages of Church management were undertaken.  Investment in art exploded and all of the artistic areas flourished in the cataract of genius called the ‘Baroque’, which forever changed Western art and gave the world some of the greatest paintings, sculptures, literary works, and edifices in history.  Also, as Ulrich recounts, the Council of Trent led to the formation of new, energetic, orthodox and pious religious orders, which changed society on a global scale.  The Jesuits for example under the leadership of St. Ignatius de Loyola are born in this era.


“…it also encouraged new orders centred on particular missions.  These orders increased exponentially the works of mercy administered by the church.  Some began caring for abandoned children and orphans, others for the sick and mentally ill; et others provided education.  This trend toward more practicality is also obvious in the new definition of sainthood that became prevalent after Trent.  It was the heroic virtues of the candidate for sainthood that now mattered and not whether he or she had performed miracles, or had visions, or suffered stigmata.  This idea of Christian heroism stressed, furthermore, that everyone was called to holiness.  The saints again became the role models for the laity, as they originally had been, and the universal call to holiness, especially emphasised by Francis de Sales, was increasingly preached, even though this was not defined as explicit church teaching until the twentieth century.”


The above is remarkable.  Here we have the firm rooting in reality of Church theology and activity.  The modern welfare state is little more than an imitation of the medieval and early modern Church apparatus which engaged every part of society.  The mysticism of the Middle Ages is now replaced by the sweaty, dirty, grimy work demanded by God and theology, in the world of the 5 senses.  One can see this in the Baroque art of the era, by masters such as Caravaggio or El Greco who attempt to depict religiously motivated messages within the context of everyday life.  This is not to suggest that the medieval era did not have the practical application of God’s work as a priority.  Christians after all invented hospitals, orphanages, poor relief, public schools, universities and a thousand other inventions that benefitted society, including capital markets and credit.  But the shift in attitude was noticeable and the focus was to relate real life back to doctrine. 


This shift in rational emphasis comported with the works of early Enlighteners such as Kant who postulated that God existed because morality needed to exist if society was to be a civilised undertaking.  Atheism was thus refuted.  It also hasted the creation of natural science institutions, built on the medieval legacy of the university, in which for example, the first school in the world for experimental physics was developed by Benedictines in Salzburg Austria in 1740.  Catholic lecturers discussed hydrostatics, electricity, mechanics, pneumatics, and optics.  Heliocentricity was developed by the Catholic Copernicus, whose theories were mathematically supported by the Protestant Kepler was commonly accepted and espoused.  By the 1750s the Catholic Churches reformation program had firmly aligned its theology with natural laws and natural science.


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