Sunday, November 30, 2008

Decline of the West Chapter 14

For latecomers, this is a chapter-by-chapter collection of excerpts from Oswald Spengler's philosophical work "Decline of the West," which was written and redacted over a period of time from the late 1800s until the early 1900s. The purpose of this analysis is to compare and contrast Chereidi Jewish Culture to general Western Culture, and to show that as these are linked and are following the same path, Chereidi Culture is also in a Decline of it's own that parallels and compliments the Decline of the West. My comments will, as usual, be in brackets.

Caveat: This chapter discusses a great deal of religious philosophy including Islam, Jesus, Paul, and Roman Church development along with a discussion of the historical development of Judaism (from a secular point of view) - so some readers may not be interested.

Decline of the West
Oswald Spengler
Chapter Fourteen
Problems of the Arabian Culture
Historic Pseudomorphoses

By the term "historical psuedomorphosis" I [Spengler] propose to designate those cases in which an older alien Culture lies so massively over the land that a young Culture cannot get its breath and fails not only to achieve pure and specific expression-forms, but even to develop fully its own self-consciousness. All that wells up from the depths of the young soul is cast in the old moulds, young feelings stiffen in senile practices, and instead of expanding its own creative power, it can only hate the distant power with a hate that grows to be monstrous.

This is the case of the Arabian Culture.

[Almost prescient, isn't it?]

The Magian Culture, geographically and historically, is the midmost of the group of higher Cultures - the only one which, in point both of space and of time, was in tough with practically all others. The structure of its history as a whole in our world-picture depends, therefore, entirely on our recognizing the true inner form which the outer moulds distorted. In this instance the consequences of specialization have been graver perhaps than in any other. The historians proper stayed within the domain of Classical philology and made the Classical language-frontier their eastern horizon; hence they entirely failed to perceive the deep unity of development on both sides of their frontier, which spiritually had no existence. The result is a perspective of "ancient," "mediaeval" and "modern" history, ordered by the use of the Greek and Latin languages. The literature-student (as a philologist) confuses the spirit of the language with the spirit of the work.

Theological research, in its turn, broke up its domain into subdivisions according to the different West European confessions, and so the "philological" frontier between West and East came into force, and still is in force, for Christian theology also. And lastly the history of Talmudic Judaism, since Hebrew philology became bound up in one specialism with Old Testament research, not only never obtained separate treatment, but has been completely forgotten by all the major histories of religions with which I [Spengler] am acquainted.

At Actium it was the unborn Arabian Culture that was opposed to iron-grey Classical Civilization; the issue lay between Principate and Caliphate. Antony's victory would have freed the Magian soul, his defeat imposed the impermeable layer of Roman Imperium.

The Russian Pseudomorphosis

A second pseudomorphosis is presented to our eyes today in Russia.

The Muscovite period of the great Boyar families and Patriarchs, in which a constant element is the resistance of an Old Russia party to the friends of Western Culture, is followed, from the founding of Petersburg in 1703, by the pseudomorphosis which forced the primitive Russian soul into the alien mould, first of full Baroque, then of the Enlightenment and then of the 19th Century. The fate-figure in Russian history is Peter the Great. The primitive tsarism of Moscow is the onlyh form which is even today appropriate to the Russian world, but in Petersburg it was distorted to the dynastic form of Western Europe.

[Putin apparently agrees.]

And thus a nationality, whose destiny should have been to continue without a history for some generations, was forced into a false and artificial history that the soul of Old Russia was simply incapable of understanding. Late-period arts and sciences, enlightenment, social ethics, the materialism of world-cities, were introduced, althouth in this pre-cultural time religion was the only language in which man understood himself in the world. In the townless land with its primitive peasantry, cities of alien type fixed themselves like ulcers - false, unnatural, unconvincing.

After this, everything that arose around it was felt by the true Russdom as lies and poison. A truly apocalyptic hatred was directed on Europe, and "Europe" was all that was not Russia. The contrast between Russian and Western, Jew-Christian and late-Classical nihilisms is extreme - the one kind is hatred of the alien that is poisoning the unborn Culture in the womb of the land, the other a surfeited disgust of one's own proper overgrowths. Depths of religious feeling, flashes of revelation, shuddering fear of the great awakening, metaphysical dreaming and yearning, belong to the beginning, as the pain of spiritual clarity belongs to the end of a history. In these pseudomorphoses they are mingled.

The spirit of the upper classes was Western, and the lower had brought in with them the soul of the countryside. Between the two worlds there was no reciprocal comprehension, no communication, no charity.

[And this is very much the case both within Islamic Countries and in the Post Soviet Era of Russia - the dichotomy between the rich upper ruling classes (yes, Communist Russia had them, very much so) with their Western Cultural influences and the poor, used, abused, and downtrodden masses is a vast and uncrossable chasm which engendered/engenders only hate and jealousy disguised as righteous anger. The wealthy Muslim rulers have only partically succeeded in deflecting that rage toward outside Western icons, and the Russian politicos were, in the end, not at all successful. The Muslim rules will soon be in the same position - their only "saving grace" will be to fully embrace (at least in public) Sharia and fundamentalist Islam. Moderate governments who tolerate Western Decadence will not last - nor will those supposedly Conservative governments who have been too ostentatious in displaying their wealth. Greed and Selfishness are Western Cultural norms, and the masses of Islam will rightly reject them - just as the Russian people did.]

To understand the two spokesmen and victims of the pseudomorphosis, it is enough that Dostoievski is the peasant and Tolstoi them an of Western Society. Tolstoi is the former Russia, Dostoievski the coming Russia. Rage as he might against Europe, Tolstoi could never shake it off. Hating it, he hates himself and so becomes the father of Bolshevism. This hatred Dostoievski does not know. His passionate power of living is comprehensive enough to embrace all things Western as well - his soul is apocalyptic, yearning, desperate, but of this future certain.

[And here we see Russia today.]

Tolstoi, on the contrary, is essentially a great understanding, "enlightened" and "socially minded." Al that he sees about him takes the Late-period, megaolpolitan and Western form of a problem. Tolsoi's hatred of property is an economist's, his hatred of society a social reformer's, his hatred of the State a political theorist's. Hence his immense effect upon the West - he belongs, in one respect as in another, to the school of Marx, Ibsen, and Zola.

Dostoievski, on the contrary, belongs to no school, unless it be that of the Apostles of primitive Christianity. Such a soul as his can look beyond everything that we call social, for the things of this world seem to it so unimportant as not to be worth improving. What has agony of a soul to do with Communism? A religion that has got as far as taking social problems in hand has ceased to be a religion.

Here we have beginning and end chasing together.

What gave this revolution its momentum was not the intelligentsia's hatred. It was the people itself, which, without hatred, urged only by the need of throwing off a disease, destroyed the old Westernism in one effort of upheaval, and will sed the new after it in another. For what this townless people yearns for is its own life-form, its own religion, its own history.

The period of Arabian Feudalism

Outside the Pseudomorphosis, and the more vigorously in proportion as the Classical influence is weaker over the country, there spring up all the forms of a genuine feudal age.

For this young world of the first centuries of our era our antiquarians and theologians have had no eyes. Busied as they are with the state of Late Republican and Imperial Rome, they conditions of the Middle East seem to them merely primitive and void of all significance. But there appeared also in these early centuries a brilliant Scholasticism and Mysticism of Magian type. It is this, and not in the Islamic, time that Arabian science began. In reality, from Edessa's point of view - of the philologist's frontier, though seeming to the Western eye an offspring of a "late-Classical" spirit, is nothing but a reflection of early-Arabian contemplation.

Syncretism

The Classical religion lived in its vast number of separate cults, the divinity is always bound to and bounded by one locality, in conformity with the static and Euclidean world-feeling. Correspondingly the relation of man to the divinity takes the shape of a local cult, in which the significances lies in the form of its ritual procedure and not in a dogma underlying them. Men could practice these cults without "belonging" to them. There were no communities of fellow-believers.

In sharp contrast to this stands the visible form of the Magian religion. It is self-evident that every such believer must believe that only one good and true God can be, and that the gods of the others are evil and false, and therefore the centre of gravity of every Magian religion lies not in a cult, but in a doctrine, in the creed.

As long as the Classical remained spiritually strong, pseudomorphosis of all the Churches of the Wast into the style of the West continued. This is a most important aspect of Syncretism.

[This syncretism also was seen in Judaism - first during the Babylonian exile, when some Bablyonian language, writing and customs were adopted as "Jewish," and later during Hellenism, when aspects of Greek Culture and mythology were brought in. Christianity as it is practiced today, of course, is little more than Persian and Greek Mithraism mixed with anti-semitism and dressed up in pagan Roman clothing, the teachings of Jewish Karaism by the man from Nazareth being long since persecuted to death and replaced by the Roman "Church" founded by pseudo-Pauline anti-nomialists and syncretized to the local pagan religious holidays and practices.]

From the second century onwards, with the fading of the Apollinian and the flowering of the Magian soul, the relations are reversed. The consequences of the Pseudomorphosis continue, but it is now cults of the West which thend to become a new Church of the East - that is, from the sum of separate cults there evolves a new community of those who believe in these gods and their rituals. of of the rigorously established forms of detail-procedure in sacrifices and mysteries grows a sort of dogma concerning the inner significance of these acts. The cults can now represent each other, the men no longer practice or perform them in the old way, but become "adherents" of them.

Carefully as Syncretism has been examined in recent years, the clue to its development - the transformation of Eastern into Western cults, and then the reverse process of transformation of Western cults into Eastern, has been missed. The formidable enemy was Paganism, or Hellenism, emerging as a powerful new Church and born in the selfsame spirit as Christianity itself. In the end there were in the east of the Roman Empire not one cult-church, but two, and if one of these comprised exclusively the followers of Christ, the other, too, was made up of communities which, under a thousand different labels, consciously worshipped one and the same divine principle.

Classical cults would have tolerated the Jesus-cult as one of their own number. But the cult-church was bound to attack the Jesus-church. All the great perseuctions of Christians (corresponding therein exactly to the later persecutions of Paganism) came, not from the "Roman" state, but from this cult-church.

[Like Islam after it, the Roman Church simply moved in, took over the local holy site and built a church, incorporated the local pagan feast days and practices, and persecuted everyone who wouldn't cooperate in the syncretization process. And, I need not elaborate, this is exactly the way Chereidi Judaism has acted - taking over local Jewish communities and then pretending it was always there.]

In the end not only its power but also in important details its [the cult-church] very form and content were inherited by Christianity. If is often stated that the Roman church adapted itself to the structure of the Roman State. This is not quite correct. The latter structure was itself by hypothesis a Church. There was a period when the two were in touch.

[In fact, the famous "Edict of Constantine" which supposedly "settled" the issue of Sunday Sabbath vs. 7th Day Sabbath never even mentions Christ or Christianity, but simply declares the "Venerable day of the Sun" to be the Roman Sabbath. Constantine was a Mithraist until the day he died, and every "official" support he gave to Christianity was with the understanding that it was just Mithras worship by a new name. This type of syncretism was well understood by the Romans, who made an Empire out of appropriating the worship of local peoples and re-naming their gods to conform with the Roman pantheon everywhere they brought their language.]

St. Augustine dared to assert that the true religion had existed before the coming of Christianity in the form of the Classical.

[And even in his "Confessions," Augustine directly states that the works of Plato and other works of Platonism are clearly Christianity, presumably before it was named properly.]

Jews, Chaldeans and Persians of the "Pre-Culture"

The first heralds of the new soul were the prophetic religions, with their magnificent depth. They, too, are an essentially Aramaean phenomenon. What seems to separate them was not their new beliefs, but the objects of their attack.

The kernel of the prophetic teachings is already Magian. There is one God - be he called Yahweh, Ahuramazda or Marduk-baal - who is the principle of good, and all other deities are either impotent or evil. To this doctrine there attached itself the hope of a Messiah, very clear in Isaiah, but also bursting out everywhere during the next centuries, under pressure of an inner necessity. It is the basic idea of Magian religion, for it contains implicitly the conception of the world-historical struggle between Good and Evil, with the power of Evil prevailing in the middle period, and the Good finally triumphant on the Day of Judgment. This moralizing of history is common to Persians, Chaldeans, and Jews. Bit with is coming, the idea of the localized people ipso facto vanished and the genesis of Magian nations without earthly homes and boundaries was at hand. The idea of the Chosen People emerged.

Babylonian exile, however, did set up an important difference between the Jews and the Persians, in respect, not of the ultimate truths of conscious piety, but of all the facts of actuality and consequently men's inward attitude to these facts. It was the Yahweh believers who were permitted to go home and the adherents of Ahuramazda who allowed them to do so. Here, in exile, with every Jewish eye turned by the Persian victory to the Zoroastrian doctrine, the pure Judaic prophecy (Amos, Hosea, Isaiah, Jeremiah) passed into Apocalypse [Deutero-Isaiah, Ezekiel, Zechariah]. All the new visions of the Son of Man, of Satan, of archangels, of the seven heavens, of the last judgment, are Persian presentations of the common world-feeling.

We must not, however, forget to loo at the "return from captivity" also from the point of view of the Babylonian. The majority were in reality far removed from these ideas, or regarded them as mere visions and dreams. Those who returned "home" were the small minority, the stubborn, the zealots...and anyone who confuses these settlers and their destiny with Jewry as a whole must necessarily fail to read the inner meaning of all following events. The little world of Judaism lived a spiritually separate life, and the nation as a whole, while regarding this life with respect, certainly did not share in it.

[Instead, they, considering themselves the superior Jews, stayed in Babylon, wrote the Babylonian Talmud, and inflicted their "superior" interpretations on the rest of Judaism - as it continues to this day.]

In the East, apocalyptic literature, the heiress of prophecy, blossomed richly. It was a genuine native poetry of the people, of which we still have the masterpiece, the Book of Job - a work in character Islamic and decidedly un-Jewish (Later it occurred to some Pharisee mind to Judaize it by interpolating chapters 32-37.) - while a multitude of its other tales and sagas, such as Judith, Tobit, Achikar, are spread as motifs over all the literatures of the "Arabian" world. In Judea only the Law flourished - the Talmudic spirit appears first in Ezekiel and after 450 is made flesh in the sopherim headed by Ezra.

[Who had come from Bablyon, of course.]

From 300 BC to AD 200 the Tannaim expounded the Torah and developed the Mishnah. Neither the coming of Jesus nor the destruction of the Temple interrupted this abstract scholarship. Jerusalem became for the rigid believer a Mecca. The "Law" and the "Prophets - these two nouns practically define the difference between Judea and Mesopotamia. In the late-Persian and in every other Magian theology both tendencies are united. It is only in the case here considered that they were separated in space. The decisions of Jerusalem were recognized everywhere, but it is a question how widely they were obeyed.

[Spengler here comes just shy of hitting the mark, not realizing that the Rabbis of Judaism purposefully downplay the prophets because prophets receive their word directly from God, whereas the Talmud is a product of the Rabbis own mind. Since the Rabbis have declared that they are the sole possessor of authority in God's name, they have declared that prophecy is "finished" and they no longer listen to the prophets, since doing so would be a de facto threat to their self-made power structure. Jesus was a prophet said the crowds, an early Karaite say the most up-to-date scholars (the Sadducees rejecting the Book of Daniel and some other books of the Writings, which were obviously accepted by Jesus and his pre-Karaite followers - remember, the Hebrew Canon was not finalized at this time.), and the Rabbis despised him and all prophets from that day forward, for calling them to the carpet for elevating their traditions of men over God's commandments.

As an aside, Paul is another matter, as Spengler will discuss below. It was HE who founded a new religion, and taught anomialism. He usurped the authority of the first followers of Jesus, the same way the Rabbis usurped the authority of the Levitical Priesthood - and both parties wreaked havoc on the original teachings they usurped.]

One other subject must be considered. Jewry, like Persia, had since the Exile increased enormously beyond the old small clan-limits. This was owing to conversions and secessions - the only form of conquest open to a landless nation and, therefore, natural and obvious to the Magian religions. But this movement came out of Mesopotamia alone, and the spirit in it was the Apocalyptic and not the Talmudic.

[There's a whole other book in that statement, but for the moment suffice it to say that it is the turning of the Chereidi toward their Western need to quantify, define, delimit and control everything that has produced, finally, a trend toward rejecting Converts altogether. The one leads to the other, because the Apocalyptic spirit that would want all Jews-by-blood and their intermarried and assimilated children to return to Judaism has been cast aside in favor of an intolerant spirit which finds itself unwilling and unable to accept a multi-faceted Judaism that can embrace every spectrum of interpretation from Karaite (written Torah alone) to lenient talmudic (Modern Orthodox) to uber-strict talmudic (Chereidi). Yet all of these are, in fact, authentic Judaism. However, the Chereidi have positioned themselves to be in charge of Conversion and Marriage, and will accept no other Judaism than the one they created out of white European Ghettoized Western Culture. As long as their imperialism lasts, they care nothing for the fate of their blood-relatives. They care only for the power and control of their own sect. They draw inward, to tighten their circle of control, instead of turning outward, to bring Judaism to the lost sheep of the House of Israel. They'd rather see them become Christian than see them become Karaite or MO, because to them, Chereidi Judaism is the only Judaism, however laughable this idea may be historically.]

Jerusalem was occupied in creating yet more legal barriers against the unbeliever. It was not enough even to abandon the practice of making converts. This is the same narrowness which in the primitive [Western] took the form of opposing preaching the Gospel to the Heathens. In the East it would simply never have occurred to anyone to draw such barriers, which were contrary to the whole idea of the Magian nation. But in that very fact was based the spiritual superiority of the wide East.

[In other words, original Judaism was happy to accept people of any nation as long as they were willing to adopt at minimum the Written Torah as taught by the Priesthood (without all that "min har Sinai" Talmudic nonsense, which began only after the Exile). Now the Rabbinate has set themselves up in a Western thought process of conquest, control, and will-to-power which is ALIEN to their Near Eastern Hebrew forebears.]

The destruction of Jerusalem hits only a very small part of the nation, one moreover that was spiritually and politically by far the least important. It is not true that the Jewish people has lived "in the Diaspora" since that day, for it had lived for centuries (and so too had the Persians and others) in a form which was independent of country.

Jesus vs. Paul

Here was no mere matter of philosophy. Jesus' utterances, which stayed in the memory of many of the devoted, even in old age, are those of a child in the midst of an alien, aged and sick world. They are not sociological observations, problems, debatings. Like a quiet island of bliss was the life of these fishermen and craftsmen by the Lake of Gennesareth in the midst of the age of the great Tiberius, far from all world-history and innocent of all the doings of actuality, while round them glittered the Hellenistic towns with their theatres and temples, their refined Western society, their noisy mob-diversions, their Roman cohorts, their Greek philosophy.

John [the Immerser] came first...the other world of historical actuality lying round him was to him as something sham, alien, void of significance when his soul, fresh from the revelation of its mission, looked about it and was confronted by the actuality of the Roman State, and that of Pharisaism. His repugnance for the stiff and selfish ideal of the latter, a feeling which was shared...by the peasant Jewry of the wide East, is the hallmark of his discourses from first to last.

[Spengler here glosses over the fact that during the 1st century CE, the Sanhedrin and High Priesthood had become politically appointed positions for the wealthy and influential instead of their rightful hereditary positions, and were filled with Roman collaborators by the Roman government, as we learn from Josephus. John rejected the Temple service not because there was anything wrong with it or with Judaism per se, but because the people running the show were not fit to run it. Jesus probably held the same opinions, in addition to his rejection of the Oral Law.]

In the famous question of the Roman Procurator, "What is truth?" lies the entire meaning of history.

Religion is metaphysic and nothing else - "Credo auia absurdum" - and metaphysic is not the metaphysic of knowledge, argument, proof (which is mere philosophy of learnedness), but lived and experienced metaphysic - that is, the unthinkable as a certainty, the supernatural as a fact, life as existence in a world that is non-actual, but true.

Religion is, first and last, metaphysic other worldliness (jenseitigkeit), awareness of a world of which the evidence of the senses merely lights the foreground. It is life in and with the supersensible. And where the capacity for this awareness, or even the capacity for believing in its existence, is wanting, real religion is at an end.

[As Chereidi Judaism is at an end, because it has taken the joy of life out of people's everyday experience and replaced it with fear and anxiety, social terrorism, mistrust, molestors, frauds, scams, ponzi-schemes, estranged children, and poverty.]

This certainly completely transformed the world-outlook of the little community. [Jesus's] teachings [based as they were on the rural, common sensibilities], as they flowed from his mild and noble nature - his inner feeling of the relation between God and man and of the high meaning of the times, which were exhaustively comprised in and defined by the word "love" - fell into the background, and their placw as taken by the teaching "about" him.

With Paul, the urban man and his "intelligence" comes on the scene. Paul was the first by which the Resurrection-experience was seen as a "problem." [In the Western sense, that it was something which needed to be analyzed, defined, delimited, and explained]. Thenceforward the holy memory faded into a Scholastic system.

That things developed thus was due to Paul alone.

[And it's no coincidence that he started out as a Pharisee, obviously.]

And so the young church took the urban and Western tendency decisively. But the new Western myth was of quite other significance and had incalculable consequences. For within the Pseudomorphosis-region there arose presently beside Jesus a figure to whom he was son, which transcended his figure - that of the Mother of God.

[This is, of course, the result of Paul's urban Roman antinomialsim syncretized with various pagan mystery cults, the Isis-Horus-Osiris and the similar Persian Ishtar cult being the most prominent.]

By giving birth to Redeemer-God, it is she who has redeemed the world. Mary the "Theotokos" ("she who bore God") was the great stumbling block for the Christians outside the Classical frontier, and it was the doctrinal developments of this idea that led [rebellious sects] to break away and re-establish [what they thought was] the pure Jesus-religion. But the Faustian Culture, again, when it awoke and needed a symbol whereby to express its primary feeling for Infinity in time and to manifest it sense of the succession of generations, set up the "Mater Dolorosa" and not the suffering Redeemer as the pivot of the German-Catholic Christianity of the Gothic age, and for whole centuries of bright fruitful devotion this woman-figure was the very synthesis of Faustian world-feeling and the object of all art, poetry, and piety.

[Ishtar in new clothes, in other words.]

It was as a result of Paul's mission that, contrary to all the initial probabilities, Greek became the language of the church and of a sacred Greek literature. Touch with the folk-spirit of the Aramaean [rural] motherland was lost. The far less sophisticated Aramaic literatures of the East - the truly Magian, written and thought in the language of Jesus and his companions - were excluded from the life of the church and vanished from the field of view, to be replaced by Plato and Aristotle.

[Of course, the Jews have their own close encounter with Platonism and the Platonic Ascent, in the form of Kabbalah. But that is some time later.]

Marcion

Paul the prophet had declared the Old Testament as fulfilled and concluded - Marcion the founder pronounced it defeated and canceled. He strove to cut out everything Jewish, down to the last detail. From end to end he was fighting nothing but Judaism. Like every true founder, as in every religiously creative period, he transformed the old gods into defeated powers.

[Marcion was, of course, the first to clearly articulate the Replacement Theology which the church from the giant of Roman Catholicism all the way down to the smallest tiny backwoods evangelical independent church embraces and believes whole heartedly - that they are the "new" Israel and everyone else is doomed to hell. Paul planted the seed, Marcion cultivated it.]

But to the new doctrine properly belonged new scriptures. The "Law and Prophets" which had hitherto been canonical for the whole of Christendom was [now considered] the Bible of the Jewish God. Thus it was a Devil's book that the Christian had in his hands, and Marcion, therefore, now set up against it the Bible of the Redeemer-God. In place of the Torah he puts the - one and true - Gospel, which he builds up uniformly out of various separate, and in his view, corrupted and falsified Gospels.

[It's clear from the original texts that Jesus was teaching a return of both Jews and assimilated Israelites to the written Torah alone, as this can be seen in several of his teachings and examples. For Marcion, a rabid anti-semite, this was an abhorrent thought. He decided those passages couldn't be original, they must have been put there by "Judaizers."]

In place of the Israelite prophets he sets up the Epistles of the one prophet of Jesus, who [in his mind, was not John the Immerser but] was Paul. Thus Marcion became the real creator of the New Testament.

The Heathen and Christian cult-churches

This development, however, took place on Classical soil. Christianity and Hellenism combined to form a common early philosophy. Plotinus and Origen, both pupils of the same master, show that the scholasticism of the Pseudomorphosis consisted in the development of Magian concepts and thoughts, by a systematic trasvaluation of the texts of Plato and Aristotle.

The characteristic central idea of the whole thought of the Pseudomorphosis is the Logos, in use and development its faithful image. What the Logos-teaching in the West did was to develop a Classical formula, by way of Philo and the [Gnostic] Gospel of John [written in the 2nd Century CE], not only into an element of Christian mysticism, but eventually into a Dogma. This was inevitable. This dogma which both the Western Churches held, corresponded, on the side of knowledge, to that which, on the side of faith, was represented both by the syncretic cults and by the cults of Mary and the Saints. And against the whole thing, dogma and cult, the feeling of the East revolted from the 4th Century on.

[The East-West church split has a parallel in Judaism, too. This split came in the form of the Karaites, who represented the rural and majority of Jews throughout the early middle ages, versus the Rabbinate, the urban, Western, analytical Talmudism which came slowly to take over and dominate Judaism from the later middle ages forward into the Enlightenment, the 19th Century, and found its final form in that offspring of the Western ghetto, Chereidi Judaism. And like Roman Catholicism before it, Chereidi Judaism tars and feathers all older (and younger, for that matter) sects of Judaism, marginalizes them, and persecutes them with the goal of causing their extinction. No burning at the stake yet, but it sometimes seems like even that is only a matter of time - seeing as they have demonstrated they're not above fire-bombing people's businesses or homes. It's really quite scary to see how like Roman Catholicism that Chereidi Judaism has become, and for the same reasons! - all in the name of hatred, power-mongering, money and control.]

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