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Medieval and Byzantine History Medieval and Byzantine History Forum - Period of History between classical antiquity and modern times, roughly the 5th through 16th Centuries

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Old June 9th, 2016, 03:04 PM   #221
Joined: Nov 2015
From: United States
Posts: 30

Originally Posted by WandaMorisette View Post
I'd say it was Constantine who threw Europe into decay by establishing something he called a church that punished anybody who wanted to be educated.
He brought stability to an Empire in turmoil. As a result, his empire lasted a thousand years. Besides, he wasn't really a Christian until his death, and had pagan imagery all over his coins and monuments to himself.

Also, correlation does not mean causation. Just because you establish something doesn't mean it won't be corrupted after you die, or vice versa. If the Church honestly tried to punish education, then why:
  • Why did they allow monks to establish educational facilities?
  • Why did the Church stand for science against superstition throughout its existence?
  • Why did they fund and support scientists and education?
  • Why didn't they try to stop Charlemagne from creating more public education?
  • Why did they allow the monks to preserve older knowledge, even some that was heretical or pagan or secular?
  • Why are all the first modern scientists from religious background if education were to be demonized?

If you're going to cite Gallileo, he was only arrested because he was talking of religious matters and delving into heresy. The Church had zero issues with his heliocentric theories because if they did, why didn't they censor Copernicus and not declare him a heretic?

If anything, the only knowledge the Church did destroy were the the indigenous knowledge of the Mexica and Incan peoples. And that disgusts me.

But that's an exception to the rule, and they were Spanish. That means, highly fanatical. They took tactics from their Islamic warlords and used them on others. I don't really see the difference between the two because their oppression is equivalent. They were still Christian and denying that would be a frank lie. What the church has done is the fact they stole children from their mothers, allow children to be molested by their priests while they preach morals, allowed the mass enslavement and or genocide of peoples via the Inquisition and the Spanish Empire.

The Moors brought prosperity to Europe but the Pope in Rome wanted them gone. If he'd tolerated them maybe the culture wouldn't have shrunk to its lowest.
They brought prosperity to Spain, but you are grabbing at straws to assume it would be the same anywhere else. Why would the Pope want people that over the span of a century:
  • Burned the Library of Alexandria to the ground for being heretical.
  • Committed genocide and took over a vast domain of territory over the native peoples of North Africa.
  • Did not allow any Non-Islamic thought at all.
  • Apostates die.
  • Native cultures were looked down upon. The Pope would be subservient or dead.
  • Almost conquered the Eastern Roman Empire outright.

You seem to lack context and historical knowledge of the Islamic conquests for worshipping them blindly. Even the "golden age" of Islam wasn't Islamic. It was in spite of Islam. Had the Mutzalites killed and kept themselves in power, or expanded it to become the defining features of Islam, then maybe I would be wrong. But they didn't. Those in the Islamic world denigrate the sect as it's considered an insult, not a compliment, to be called one of them.

Decline in Western Europe, if there was really any, began under the death throes of the Western Empire during the 3rd century. And even by the 5th century, it was just legal fiction. In reality, the various parts of the West were led de facto by the "barbarians", which continued the legal and other traditions of the Empire. If you're only speaking of Italy, then like other areas, there was a ton of instability that can be taken to war.

Let's say that the Moors did in fact come to Rome and make the West their own. If we look towards the Islamic conquests of North Africa and Spain, it would probably bring stability under a central power. But it would lack the tenacity and freedom that prevailed in much of the West. That chaos, that anarchy? That's what made the West a dominating power for the last five centuries. It was still chaos though, and the Church was failing to keep Europe together.

Even then, the Moors weren't stable either. They had periods where governments switched often as the rest of Europe or even worse. The only Moorish government that was tolerant only lasted for fifty years. Had they been the ones that lasted and became the predominant power of Europe, they could have a shot of bettering Europe over the cluster of chaos that it became in the 16th century. But even then, the Moors would have to compromise and compromise even more to keep the tribes at bay as the Catholics did. In essence, European Islam would share more in common with how Islam was received in Indonesia. It would be a liberalblend of various ethnic traditions and rituals that were assimilated into Islamic culture. Christianity had it been subsumed later might mix into it as well.

This all assumes that there wouldn't be a Reconquista in Europe itself or that Europeans would be fine being treated as kafir. If anything, this would probably have an Inquisition where people are even far less tolerant of other views due to said oppression, and it would be the whole of Western Eurasia instead of Spain.
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Old June 10th, 2016, 12:10 AM   #222

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Joined: Nov 2010
From: Cornwall
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There are very limited periods islamic Spain was 'stabilised under a central power'. In fact the only real indisputable time is the Caliphal period (roughly 930 to about 1008) when the iron grip of Cordoba stabilised it all.

You could make an argument for the very initial period just after the final Omeya conquest of Narbonne region and maybe the Almoravids then Almohads. But in all these 3 unrest and revolt was never very far away.
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