Monday, 18 July 2011

Stony ground

Jacopo Robusti detto il Tintoretto - Predica di Cristo (1545 - 1547 ca.)
Venezia, Ca' Rezzonico - Museo del Settecento Veneziano

I was arguing with an atheist today. I left it at the point that the Inquisition and the Crusades were being invoked. It's very difficult to convince some people that Christianity contributed anything to western civilisation. So I gave up and listened to Mozart's Requiem instead.


Anonymous said...

I have this idea that the Battle of Milvian Bridge was the catalyst for the West as we know it today. Logic being, Constantine won and adopted Christianity as the official religion; state patronage proving really useful, the Catholic church is formed and this becomes the religion of the West. After about 1200 years or so, we start to see protestantism and this leads to schsim and Northern Europe gets protestantism, rational thought and the work ethic.

Whether or not you are a believer, it's hard not to see some positives. After all, without the common bind of Christianity, it is hard to see Charles Martel winning the battle of tours and one wonders what joys Rahman would have had in store for us. Would Europe not have been a colder mirror of North Africa and Arabia?

Trooper Thompson said...

"protestantism, rational thought and the work ethic"

I would dispute the rational thought part of this, and take that back at least to Aquinas. The work ethic part I think you're right, but it's not such a good thing. Rather than work for work's sake, I prefer work as a means to an end.

"Whether or not you are a believer, it's hard not to see some positives."

This is the point I tried and failed to get across in my recent dispute.