Religious freedom: How did it happen?

_armada__armada_ Liable to many exceptions PExer
Of all the great world religions past and present, Christianity has been by far the most intolerant. This statement may come as a shock, but it is nevertheless true. In spite of the fact that Jesus Christ, the Jewish founder of the Christian religion, is shown in the New Testament as a prophet and savior who preached mutual love and nonviolence to his followers, the Christian church was for a great part of its history an extremely intolerant institution. From its inception it was intolerant of other, non-Christian religions, first Greco-Roman polytheism, then Judaism, from which it had to separate itself, and later on Islam. Early in its history, from the time of the apostles, it also became increasingly intolerant of heresy and heretics, those persons who, although worshipers of Christ, dissented from orthodox doctrine by maintaining and disseminating beliefs--about the nature of Christ, the Trinity, the priesthood, the church, and other matters--that ecclesiastical authority condemned as false, and incurring the penalty of damnation ...

The sixteenth century, which witnessed the Reformation and the beginning and spread of Protestantism, was probably the most intolerant period in Christian history, marked not only by violent conflict between contending Christian denominations but by an upsurge of anti-Judaism and anti-Semitism in western Europe. When Martin Luther, John Calvin, and other outstanding religious reformers undertook their successful revolt against the Catholic Church and established their own Protestant churches, the latter showed themselves to be no less intolerant of heretics and dissenting Christians than was the Catholic Church. In the attempt by Catholic and Protestant governments in Europe to stop the spread of heresy, and in the civil and external wars of religion waged between Catholicism and Protestantism in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, countless thousands of people on both sides perished or were forced to go into exile as the victims of religious persecution. It was the long and terrible history of the inhumanity of Christianity in its dealing with differences of religious belief, a history not yet ended even in his own time, that caused the famous eighteenth-century French thinker Voltaire to declare that "of all religions the Christian is undoubtedly that which should instill the greatest toleration, although so far Christians have been the most intolerant of men."

It is at this point that we confront the problem mentioned in this chapter's title. If Christian Europe and the Western world were so intolerant in religion for so many hundreds of years, and indeed in some places down to the later nineteenth century and even beyond, how did it happen that their leaders and members came eventually to change their opinion and to endorse the principle of religious toleration?

Perez Zagorin: How the Idea of Religious Toleration Came to the West, press.princeton.edu

It's a safe bet few (if any) of RoT's religious skeptics would survive the Middle Ages with their skins intact. So how did history get to the point we can read the things quoted above without worrying about getting an invitation from the burn-'em-alive crowd?
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Comments

  • sophionsophion Member PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    _armada_ wrote: »
    Of all the great world religions past and present, Christianity has been by far the most intolerant.
    in terms of religious intolerance...possibly. but intolerance overall:

    * religious intolerance
    * gender discrimination
    * intolerance of certain arts & sciences

    NOTHING BEATS ISLAM.
  • quick_benquick_ben Primus Pullus PEx Rookie ⭐
    sophion wrote: »
    in terms of religious intolerance...possibly. but intolerance overall:

    * religious intolerance
    * gender discrimination
    * intolerance of certain arts & sciences

    NOTHING BEATS ISLAM.


    Ah... but Islam is relatively young compared to Chritianity. Christianity predates Islam by 600 years. So that makes Islam around for about 14 centuries. And we all know how Christians behaved in the 14th century:

    * religious intolerance - CRUSADES
    * gender discrimination - women stay at home. no education, etc.
    * intolerance of certain arts & sciences - book burning, suppression of enlightenment.

    Islam is passing through the same phase as Chritianity, you notice that nowadays Islam has an identity crisis. They're trying to decide what they want to be.

    However, I must say, Islam started out pretty well in its beginnings in 2 out of the 3 subjects you mentioned.

    * religious intolerance - Islam started out as the most tolerant religion, compared to Judaism and Christianity during its expansion years. Whenever Islam absorbed a territory, they allowed Jews and Christians religious freedom (People of the Book, in the words of Muhammad, who respected Abraham, Moses and Jesus as his teachers). Jews and Christians reached high positions in government even to the extent of being advisors to Sultans. Jews thrived as businessmen and doctors. The history of North Africa, and of Spain before the Reconquista will attest to that. It was only during the Crusades, when intolerant Christians massacred Muslims, Jews AND Arab-looking Christians that Islam began to close itself and became untrusting of those of other Religions. It was Christians who hated and massacred Jews throughout Europe during the Middle Ages and up to the early part of the 20th Century. The Holocaust was perpetrated by people who included Christians. It was only when the Jews land-grabbed Palestine that the Arabs and Muslims began to hate the Jews with a vengance.

    * intolerance of certain arts & sciences - while Christian monasteries were burning books that weren't included in the bible - Books that included works of Homer, Plato, Aristotle, the Greek and Roman philosophers, works on astronomy, medicine, science and arts (the greatest atrocity was the burning of the Alexandria library with which possessed the greatest collection of knowledge up to that point in time, some of that knowledge, especially greek and roman history were never recovered) - Muslims have been keeping them, teaching them and developing them. Muslims developed Algebra, advanced medicine, kept knowledge - including the knowledge and advancement developed in the Far East (China). While Muslims were taking baths for their health, Christians were avoiding baths because they believed Jesus never took a bath, because it wasn't written in the bible. While Muslim population grew, Christians were dying of the plague. Without Islam's tolerace for science, intellectuals of Europe would never have taken hold of those knowledge and therefore pave the way of European enlightenment and technological advancements that led to European expansion and colonization that has so much shaped the world we now live in. Without Islam, Europeans would still be barbarians.

    So... one can't say Christianity is better than Islam. Christians started out as persecuted people who came to power became like the people who persecuted them and began hating every other people. Muslims started out a little bit enlightened and turned to hating other people, thanks to no small part of the hate directed towards them by... yep, Christians.

    So, in a way, they are all the same.
  • shngshng Member PExer
    sophion wrote: »
    in terms of religious intolerance...possibly. but intolerance overall:

    * religious intolerance
    * gender discrimination
    * intolerance of certain arts & sciences

    NOTHING BEATS ISLAM.

    religious intolerance definitely nothing beats islam*okay*they go places and built mosque but you can't build a church or spread the gospel in their territory..
  • sophionsophion Member PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    quick_ben wrote: »
    Ah... but Islam is relatively young compared to Chritianity.
    in terms of age...Islam had already massacred & enslaved thousands of people in its first 20 years. Christianity hasnt done that in its first 500 years. And mind you, Islam's very founder...Mohammad himself ang pasimuno ng katarantaduhan. Compared with Jesus & his apostles who were as meek as lambs.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    * religious intolerance - CRUSADES
    Crusades happend 900 years into christianity's life. Jihad began 13 years into Islam's life.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    * intolerance of certain arts & sciences - book burning, suppression of enlightenment.
    islam rejected science in its 400th year. stagnated since then.
    christianity came in conflict with science in the 1500th year and the conflict was short lived.

    islam rejects many forms of arts and music. you cant paint & sculp images of people.

    christianity had michael angelo, beethoven & shakespear

    quick_ben wrote: »
    Islam is passing through the same phase as Chritianity, you notice that nowadays Islam has an identity crisis. They're trying to decide what they want to be.
    besides, by your logic the young scientologists should be holding an inquisition today. no, humanity grows together. the age of a religion is no excuse.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    * religious intolerance - Islam started out as the most tolerant religion, compared to Judaism and Christianity during its expansion years.
    in its starting years islam massacred & enslaved christians & jews. polytheists were completely exterminated unless they convert.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    Muslims started out a little bit enlightened and turned to hating other people, thanks to no small part of the hate directed towards them by... yep, Christians.
    mohammad hated jews more than christians. when moslems were persecuted and expelled it was a christian kingdom who adopted them. jews, christians & polytheist had put up with 10 years with mohammad while he unceasingly insulted their religion. try insulting islam in modern day arabia and you wont last 10 minutes.





    So now do you believe me na mas intolerate nga ang Islam? *okay*
  • quick_benquick_ben Primus Pullus PEx Rookie ⭐
    sophion wrote: »
    islam rejected science in its 400th year. stagnated since then.
    christianity came in conflict with science in the 1500th year and the conflict was short lived.

    Chritianity's war with science and enlightenment isn't short-lived. Science and Christians are still at odds today. Creationists vs Evolutioninsts. Stem cell research.

    And it didn't start in the 1500th year, of all ages. Book burning began in the late Roman period, when Christians gained power and destroyed pagan Roman temples of all other that coexisted with one another up to that point. Christian bishops by order of the Christian Roman emperor, burned the books of the Great Library of Alexandria that contained all the western knowledge of that age up to that time. In 391, before muhammad was born. They weren't just at war with science, they were at war with knowledge that wasn't Christian-based.

    And it intensified in the 15th cent because that was the time when the Silk Trade was flourishing and the west not only got trade goods from the east, but knowlege and books also. Books that have been banned in europe and have been kept in the Middle East. So it was the time when intellectuals were able to express their knowlege against the Church wishes.
    sophion wrote: »
    islam rejects many forms of arts and music. you cant pain't & sculp images of people.

    fundamental islamist sects reject them. Not mainstream. Go to Turkey, go to Egypt, Indonesians are in MTV, for crying out loud. American Muslims are deep into Western Pop culture.

    The same as many fundamental Christian sects reject rock music and dancing. The American midwest is notoriuous for having communities like these. Ever heard of the American Boy from a fundamental Christian High School who had to sign a contract not to involve himself in dancing, but he attended his girlfriend's prom and wasn't allowed to graduate?

    What about the Amish? They reject everything that smells 20th century. (Lucky for us they rejected violence, too.)
    sophion wrote: »
    christianity had michael angelo, beethoven & shakespear

    Ah, but did the Church approve of them?

    Muslims aren't the illiterate, uncultured tribesmen you seem to suggest. Have you ever heard of Omar Khayyam the great Persian mathematician, astronomer, philosopher and poet? Did you read his Rubiayat - one of the classic works of art from the early middle ages, when christians have lost the art of writing and poetry?

    How about One Thousand and One Arabian Nights?

    The only reason why we only hear of guys like Bethoven, michaelangelo and what have you is because our culture is western and christian-based. It would be different if we lived in Indonesia, or Bosnia, or Morocco, or Turkey.
    sophion wrote: »
    in its starting years islam massacred & enslaved christians & jews. polytheists were completely exterminated unless they convert.

    And I wonder how the whole Roman empire became Christian within one generation. Did they convert because they were inspired? Pagans lost their rights under Constantine and Theodosius and had to convert to Chritianity.

    Oh, and my favorite... America from Mexico down to Argentina and the Philippines is Christian. Two words: Conquistadores and Friars. They carry the word of God.

    sophion wrote: »
    So now do you believe me na mas intolerate nga ang Islam? *okay*

    don't tell that to the Muslim inhabitants of Bosnia and Kosovo who had to suffer numerous atrocities perpetuated against them by Christian Serbs.

    At least the Jews and Muslims of Spain during the Inquisition are already dead so they can't hear that statement.

    Of course one can always point out that Muslims hate other Muslims, like we see in Iraq. Shi'as hate Sunnis, Sunnis hate Shi'as and both hate the Kurds.

    But then... Christians can't stand one another, too. During the Thirty Years war, Catholics and Protestants tried to exterminate one another. The French massacred Hugenots. And Crusades weren't declared against only the Muslims. Have you ever wondered why most people never heard of Cathars or Albigensians of Southern France, a Christian sect. Because the Pope ordered one of the most successful Crusades of all against them and virtually exterminated the sect. Ireland was a mess for centuries because Prots and Catholics can't just get along.

    I do agree that many fundamental Islam sects are more overt and more violent in their intolerance. Intolerant Christian fundamentalists are covert. They don't show it until you turn your back. And they mostly act behind the scenes.

    To me, Christian intolerance is just as dangerous as Muslim intolerance and is quite in the same level. White supremacists usually point to the bible to reason out their hate for Blacks and Asians and Jews. So do Neo-Nazis. James von Brunn, who obviously hated Jews had a picture of Hitler and also was involved in child pornography, he also had a picture of Jesus.

    What I'm saying is that Christians cannot say they're better in any way than Muslims because if you look at their history up to the present time, both have just as much dirt as the other.
  • PyrosPyros Faith Under Fire PExer
    Mainstream Christianity should thank Emperor Constantine for adopting the Christian sect as his state religion, conversion was "join or else..." --Arius was fatally poisoned and those who did not tow the line were never heard again including non-christians-- However, Constantine never converted to Christianity - that is why Roman Catholic did not canonize him into sainthood despite of his effort.
  • sophionsophion Member PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    quick_ben wrote: »
    And it didn't start in the 1500th year, of all ages. Book burning began in the late Roman period, when Christians gained power and destroyed pagan Roman temples of all other that coexisted with one another up to that point. Christian bishops by order of the Christian Roman emperor, burned the books of the Great Library of Alexandria that contained all the western knowledge of that age up to that time. In 391, before muhammad was born. They weren't just at war with science, they were at war with knowledge that wasn't Christian-based.
    1. there are many theories to the destruction of the great library (as suchd one of these theories were attributed to moslem conquest). so we cant really make any conclusions on it. i cant blame it on anyone.

    2. It isnt science per se why christians burned books. it is paganism itself that they were suppressing.


    Such burnings of pagan books were nowhere as catastrophic as the Islamic "Closing the Door on Ijtihad" around the 10th century:
    "Ironically, the loss of its application in law seems to have also led to its loss in philosophy and the sciences, which most historians think caused Muslim societies to stagnate before the 1492 fall of al-Andalus"
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ijtihad

    Admit it, Islam is far more intolerant to science than any other major religion in human history. :bop:
    quick_ben wrote: »
    fundamental islamist sects reject them. Not mainstream. Go to Turkey, go to Egypt, Indonesians are in MTV, for crying out loud. American Muslims are deep into Western Pop culture.
    Problem is fundamentalism is far too common among moslem people. Look their nations almost all of them practice some form of sharia law: mixing religion with politics.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    The American midwest is notoriuous for having communities like these. Ever heard of the American Boy from a fundamental Christian High School who had to sign a contract not to involve himself in dancing, but he attended his girlfriend's prom and wasn't allowed to graduate?

    What about the Amish? They reject everything that smells 20th century. (Lucky for us they rejected violence, too.)
    in choosing to attend that school he has to abide by its codes of conduct, as every school does have one. Besides its only rock music they are against. Myself I oppose heavy metal, i wont allow my kids to engage in it if i could help it. That doesnt mean i am totally against music. Same thing with christians. And FYI, music is an integral part of christianity and even dancing to some degree.

    Intolerance is all about force and the amish dont force anybody.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    Ah, but did the Church approve of them?
    * Michaelangelo painted the Vatican's church ceilings, remember?
    * Beethoven's father & grandfather were chapel singers.
    * Shakespeare's plays demonstrate a mind "richly stored with the thoughts and words of the English Bible"
    quick_ben wrote: »
    Muslims aren't the illiterate, uncultured tribesmen you seem to suggest.
    no im not suggesting that. on the contrary they are probably the most literate people in earth's history given the fact that they are often required to recite verses from a book.

    literacy doesnt mean tolerance though.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    Have you ever heard of Omar Khayyam the great Persian mathematician, astronomer, philosopher and poet? Did you read his Rubiayat - one of the classic works of art from the early middle ages, when christians have lost the art of writing and poetry?
    I have heard a number of great mathematicians & doctors in their history. And quite often I had to ask the same question you asked me "Ah, but did the Church approve of them?". Or rather did the Islamic clerics approve them? With Omar here, its...
    He came into conflict with religious officials several times, and had to explain his views on Islam on multiple occasions; there is even one story about a treacherous pupil who tried to bring him into public odium. The contemporary Ibn al Kifti wrote that Omar Khayyam "performed pilgrimages not from piety but from fear" of his contemporaries who divined his unbelief.[25]

    Khayy?m's disdain of Islam in general and its various aspects such as eschatology, Islamic taboos and divine revelation are clearly visible in his writings, particularly the quatrains, which as a rule reflect his intrinsic conclusions describing those who claim to receive God's word as maggot-minded fanatics (via Le Gallienne's translation)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omar_Khayy%C3%A1m

    I suppose thats one of the effects of "Closing the gates of Ijtihad"...the alienation of its scientists.

    quick_ben wrote: »
    How about One Thousand and One Arabian Nights?

    The only reason why we only hear of guys like Bethoven, michaelangelo and what have you is because our culture is western and christian-based. It would be different if we lived in Indonesia, or Bosnia, or Morocco, or Turkey.
    You missed the point. Islam has much greater limitations on art & music. Painting or sculpting human-like figures are often seen as idolatrous. Music is often seen as lewd & useless. Thats the very reason why very few moslem attained prominence. Like who wrote the arabian nights? Have muslims turned it into a theatrical play?

    quick_ben wrote: »
    And I wonder how the whole Roman empire became Christian within one generation. Did they convert because they were inspired? Pagans lost their rights under Constantine and Theodosius and had to convert to Chritianity.
    Its bloodless. Thats what matters. And yes most converted because of inspiration. They have gotten numerous even though they were being tortured for decades. To the point that the emperor himself converted freely. And often the conversion of the king inspires many more to follow suit.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    Oh, and my favorite... America from Mexico down to Argentina and the Philippines is Christian. Two words: Conquistadores and Friars. They carry the word of God.
    of course. but the point is, that was well 1300 years after christianity was founded. Islam began doing the same thing in its 13th year and continued ceaselessly for another 1400 years.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    don't tell that to the Muslim inhabitants of Bosnia and Kosovo who had to suffer numerous atrocities perpetuated against them by Christian Serbs.
    theres conflict where muslims werent able to fully convert the people it invaded. eastern europe. indian continent. east timur. north & central africa. palestine. hundreds of years of moslem persecution plants deep seated hatred waiting to explode.

    quick_ben wrote: »
    At least the Jews and Muslims of Spain during the Inquisition are already dead so they can't hear that statement.
    really its "thank god" the spaniards wisely expelled them. the spaniards had every right to do what they did. to fight the invaders.
    FYI the jews who betrayed the spaniards for the moslems....they were massacred by moslems when they no longer needed them. And many of these jews had to turn around and switch sides again. Too bad that proves they could not really be trusted. And had to be expelled along with the invaders.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    Of course one can always point out that Muslims hate other Muslims, like we see in Iraq. Shi'as hate Sunnis, Sunnis hate Shi'as and both hate the Kurds.

    But then... Christians can't stand one another, too. During the Thirty Years war, Catholics and Protestants tried to exterminate one another. The French massacred Hugenots. And Crusades weren't declared against only the Muslims. Have you ever wondered why most people never heard of Cathars or Albigensians of Southern France, a Christian sect. Because the Pope ordered one of the most successful Crusades of all against them and virtually exterminated the sect. Ireland was a mess for centuries because Prots and Catholics can't just get along.
    i know, i know. thats why i said from the beginning that when it comes to religious tolerance ALONE christians may well POSSIBLY be on top. In the past. But all those interfaith violence did teach christians the value of religious tolerance beginning with the "Peace of Westphalia" which concluded the 30 years war.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    I do agree that many fundamental Islam sects are more overt and more violent in their intolerance. Intolerant Christian fundamentalists are covert. They don't show it until you turn your back. And they mostly act behind the scenes.

    To me, Christian intolerance is just as dangerous as Muslim intolerance and is quite in the same level. White supremacists usually point to the bible to reason out their hate for Blacks and Asians and Jews. So do Neo-Nazis. James von Brunn, who obviously hated Jews had a picture of Hitler and also was involved in child pornography, he also had a picture of Jesus.
    But christian intolerance is no longer serious business, annoying at most with rare outbursts here & there. Islam still has a very long way to go, and i believe that its more resistant to improvement since its very founder serves as a fine example for many barbaric deeds.
  • sophionsophion Member PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    Pyros wrote: »
    Mainstream Christianity should thank Emperor Constantine for adopting the Christian sect as his state religion, conversion was "join or else..." --Arius was fatally poisoned and those who did not tow the line were never heard again including non-christians-- However, Constantine never converted to Christianity - that is why Roman Catholic did not canonize him into sainthood despite of his effort.

    INCs should thank him too. Afterall INC was just a mere byproduct of mainstream christianity. So in a way INC owes Constantine. Amen? *okay*
  • quick_benquick_ben Primus Pullus PEx Rookie ⭐
    I still have to disagree with you in some points
    sophion wrote: »
    1. there are many theories to the destruction of the great library (as suchd one of these theories were attributed to moslem conquest). so we cant really make any conclusions on it. i cant blame it on anyone.

    To my knowledge from the burning of the library was ordered by the Christian emperor and executed by the Bishop of Egypt(?)
    sophion wrote: »
    Admit it, Islam is far more intolerant to science than any other major religion in human history. :bop:

    I will only agree when talking about modern times. Christians may seemed to have learned but most of the tolerace was begun by non-practicing Christians or (the less pious ones) and adapted by Christians who agreed with their sentiments. As we all know, todays Christianity is lax now due to the dissent among its members.
    sophion wrote: »
    Problem is fundamentalism is far too common among moslem people. Look their nations almost all of them practice some form of sharia law: mixing religion with politics.

    No. they're not the majority of the muslim population. They're just the ones that get all the attention in the Western media basically because of their violent actions.
    sophion wrote: »
    Its bloodless. Thats what matters. And yes most converted because of inspiration. They have gotten numerous even though they were being tortured for decades. To the point that the emperor himself converted freely. And often the conversion of the king inspires many more to follow suit.

    It wasn't bloodless. It was sanitized in history because early European history as we know it today was written by Christians. I'm sure they didn't want that stain when they were writing it themselves, did they?

    sophion wrote: »
    really its "thank god" the spaniards wisely expelled them. the spaniards had every right to do what they did. to fight the invaders.
    FYI the jews who betrayed the spaniards for the moslems....they were massacred by moslems when they no longer needed them. And many of these jews had to turn around and switch sides again. Too bad that proves they could not really be trusted. And had to be expelled along with the invaders.

    I'm quite uncomfortable with the term "wisely". You're talking about expelling people from the land they were born. They weren't invaders, Muslims had lived in Andalusia since at least 700 AD. By the time it was 1493, those people aren't invaders anymore. Just as much as the current American population can't be considered invaders anymore. Remember, their ancestors landgrabbed from the Native Americans, too. How do you think Americans would feel if you said they don't belong in their lands anymore because it originally belonged to the natives.


    sophion wrote: »
    But christian intolerance is no longer serious business, annoying at most with rare outbursts here & there. Islam still has a very long way to go, and i believe that its more resistant to improvement since its very founder serves as a fine example for many barbaric deeds.

    Yes it still is. It's more subtle than Muslim extremism. Islamic extremists shout it from the top of their lungs. Christian intolerance of bible-totting white supremacists and neo-nazis don't. Then they shoot people of the street with sniper rifles, or go to colleges and shoot kids.

    Intolerance, in any form is just as serious as the other form. And it's just as deadly.
  • zweihanderfaustzweihanderfaust Member PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    they did this and they did that... those points are pointless if at the very end of this discussion, walang magtatanong "given all of these, how do we rectify this?"

    puro issues nalang but nobody really talks about the solutions. or even at least talk about coming up with solutions.
  • redhakawredhakaw hated the job PExer
    ^and you think that we can do something about it?

    you cant change the world dear, what you can do is join it and make use of it and benefit from it.
  • quick_benquick_ben Primus Pullus PEx Rookie ⭐
    they did this and they did that... those points are pointless if at the very end of this discussion, walang magtatanong "given all of these, how do we rectify this?"

    puro issues nalang but nobody really talks about the solutions. or even at least talk about coming up with solutions.


    Well, how do we rectify it, indeed?

    On one side, people are trying to promote tolerance and understanding even if you don't agree with the other side. On the other hand, people want you to believe in the same thing as they believe in and convince you that all the other points-of-view are wrong.

    Do you have a solution on how to fix that? Can you help implement it?

    The problem? One side represents everything the other side abhors. So how can we fix that?
  • zweihanderfaustzweihanderfaust Member PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    i don't have the answer. i don't claim i know how to find the answer.

    after turning back from my intellectual-conceitedness, i just started to hope. you don't even need to religion to know and feel how it is to hope. or have you all forgotten how that feels?

    it may not be me who changes the world but there are others who can, have done it, and who will do it.

    i respect you all for your skepticisms such an answer to the problems we face. if you do believe there is none or lost that hope, may i ask you all to stand back and don't get in the way of people who do. and i mean this in the humblest way possible.

    and the world is not as black and white as we all would like to think.

    anyway.. this is already straying away from the topic.

    peace!
  • sophionsophion Member PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    they did this and they did that... those points are pointless if at the very end of this discussion, walang magtatanong "given all of these, how do we rectify this?"

    puro issues nalang but nobody really talks about the solutions. or even at least talk about coming up with solutions.


    Talking about the issue is a solution upon itself. Criticism shames the afftected party and this urges them to make positive changes.
  • sophionsophion Member PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    quick_ben wrote: »
    To my knowledge from the burning of the library was ordered by the Christian emperor and executed by the Bishop of Egypt(?)
    thats just the 3rd of 4 outstanding theories:
    • Julius Caesar's Fire in The Alexandrian War, in 48 BC
    • The attack of Aurelian in the third century AD;
    • The decree of Theophilus in AD 391;
    • The Muslim conquest in AD 642 or thereafter.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_library#Destruction_of_the_Library

    or it may be all those factors combined together. and this:
    Recent underwater excavations in the harbor of modern Alexandria have also lent credence to the idea that several catastrophic earthquakes between the third and fifth centuries AD may have played a role in the decline and/or destruction of the library (as well as the city itself).[

    you see, the demise of the libaray could not be blamed on any single cause.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    I will only agree when talking about modern times. Christians may seemed to have learned but most of the tolerace was begun by non-practicing Christians or (the less pious ones) and adapted by Christians who agreed with their sentiments. As we all know, todays Christianity is lax now due to the dissent among its members.
    In modern times Christians are more tolerant than muslims in every aspect (religion, science, arts & culture)

    In the dark ages Muslims are more tolerant only in religious aspects.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    No. they're not the majority of the muslim population. They're just the ones that get all the attention in the Western media basically because of their violent actions.
    Im talking about NATIONS. Almost every moslem nation today practice some form of that intolerant Sharia Law.

    quick_ben wrote: »
    It wasn't bloodless. It was sanitized in history because early European history as we know it today was written by Christians. I'm sure they didn't want that stain when they were writing it themselves, did they?
    conspiray theories. european history was entirely written by christians up until the rennaissance. if christians wanted to sanitize it why did they bother mentioning the atrocities of the crusades or those of the inquisition?

    early christianity was very peaceful because of the fresh teachings of the pacifist jesus christ and his absolutely charming apostles.
    quick_ben wrote: »
    I'm quite uncomfortable with the term "wisely". You're talking about expelling people from the land they were born. They weren't invaders, Muslims had lived in Andalusia since at least 700 AD. By the time it was 1493, those people aren't invaders anymore. Just as much as the current American population can't be considered invaders anymore. Remember, their ancestors landgrabbed from the Native Americans, too. How do you think Americans would feel if you said they don't belong in their lands anymore because it originally belonged to the natives.
    Being born in a squatter area doesnt automatically give you ownership of that land so long as there are legal claimants to that land. In a similar case when moslems conquered spanish cities the spanish had never given up the claims to their lands. They have fought the moslems unceasingly. Unlike the European colonization which was MOSTLY on free, open & unclaimed land. Yeah there have been some land-grabbings of actual native american lands but they have resolved those issues through different treates so that the natives no longer cared to reclaim lost lands. The indians even had alliances with the colonists. And now they consider themselves as part of one big american & canadian family.


    The expulsion was wise because if the moslems continued to remain in spain then today not only would there be:

    * palestinian conflict
    * india vs pakestani conflict
    * eastern european christian vs moslem conflict
    * african arabs vs native african conflict

    but we would also have the

    * spanish-moslem conflict

    its good that moslems were driven back to northern africa where they came from. now the moslems are the sole problems of native black africans. spain is out of it. :D
    quick_ben wrote: »
    Yes it still is. It's more subtle than Muslim extremism. Islamic extremists shout it from the top of their lungs. Christian intolerance of bible-totting white supremacists and neo-nazis don't. Then they shoot people of the street with sniper rifles, or go to colleges and shoot kids.
    hmmm the school shooters were godless atheists. and the last sniper ive heard of was an american muslim convert.

    violent christian terrorists are more into bombing abortion clinics. thats much smaller in scale than moslem bombings of airplanes and tourist spots.

    and remember, moslem violence isnt limited to terrorism. what about sharia law which maims thieves, hangs gays, and beheads apostates? apart from worldwide discrimination of women.
  • cedric_errolcedric_errol PeX Certified Winter Knight PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    Sophion: I totally agree with what _armada_ posted here. Like him, I never heard of Islam either. And if I did, I'll still believe that "Christianity has been by far the most intolerant." You can't change my mind.

    This is perfect and flawless scholarly research. He makes a perfectly good case.

    PS I'm an RCC member, so that makes me the most intense fanatic christian member. I'm secretly ultra sado-masochistic too. I'll skin heathens alive. I'm actually skinning one right now.
  • sophionsophion Member PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    Sophion: I totally agree with what _armada_ posted here. Like him, I never heard of Islam either. And if I did, I'll still believe that "Christianity has been by far the most intolerant."

    I did imply that I agree with him too. In the middle ages christianity was probably the most religious intolerant.

    But not by far. Islam comes a close second. Witches, atheists, heretics & apostates wont find it any better in the moslem world.

    Islam is a little more tolerant because at least it tolerates two other religions to a small degree: judaism & christianity. whereas christianity only tolerates one religion judaism and at a lesser degree.
  • OneirosOneiros Slacker PExer
    sophion wrote: »
    I did imply that I agree with him too. In the middle ages christianity was probably the most religious intolerant.

    But not by far. Islam comes a close second. Witches, atheists, heretics & apostates wont find it any better in the moslem world.

    Islam is a little more tolerant because at least it tolerates two other religions to a small degree: judaism & christianity. whereas christianity only tolerates one religion judaism and at a lesser degree.
    Surprisingly, cedric was being sarcastic.
  • sophionsophion Member PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    _armada_ wrote: »
    So how did history get to the point we can read the things quoted above without worrying about getting an invitation from the burn-'em-alive crowd?

    it is true that the reformation period marks the peak of christian intolerance. but the end of the reformation marks the beginning of christian tolerance:
    • Christians living in principalities where their denomination was not the established church were guaranteed the right to practice their faith in public during allotted hours and in private at their will

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protestant_reformation#Conclusion_and_legacy


    That was the beginning of the slow climb towards religious equality.
  • _armada__armada_ Liable to many exceptions PExer
    I guess anyone's going to sound like a caricature if they never heard of Europeans or Arabs.

    Europe, mainly the Greeks and Romans, developed an advanced civilization before christianity existed. Christians certainly don't deserve praise for what happened after they took power: The sack of Rome, followed closely by the Dark Ages; all within a century of Nicaea, or thirty years after the Theodosian decrees.

    So unlike the Arabs, who had nothing till islam came along; look at what they achieved in their first few centuries of being muslims. Even the people the Arabs conquered, the Moors, grew stronger after they became muslim converts, to the point of evicting the Arabs from Spain and North Africa. On the other hand, the Ottomans took up islam after they conquered the Arabs, and went on to become a great empire themselves. Same with the Mongols; that has to count for something.

    In contrast, christianity has mainly served the interests of a single race, Europeans. Personally it isn't the christian history of the Americas and the Philippines that's most damning; the historical fact is, nearly every muslim nation existing today was once colonized by christians.

    That's got to count for something.

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