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Old November 24th, 2012, 02:50 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by wowi132 View Post
This aint no big ass discussion thread or anything
But i,m just wondering, what were the REAL reason for the crusades? mainly the first one.
was it Emperor Alexios' plead to pope Urban for help agains the "heathens"
Or was it because Urban just wanted a reason to see the muslims dead?
Please inform me of this, as i have little knowledge of what happened after the 1st crusade, and what the reasons for them were.

thanks
Back to the First Crusade:

It is not clear where did the concept of killing people of other faith per se as a general penance for sins came from; it was not present in the contemporary Eastern Christianity.

It is not clear to what extent did Urbano II & co actually expected to help Constantinople.

Their additional political motivations are not entirely clear either.

Given that the Romans had been often asking for help for their centuries-long struggle with some Muslim nation or the other, it is not clear why was this moment chosen for the Crusade.

What seems clear is that this Holy War was not the result of any careful strategy.

If it eventually succeeded that was largely due to the surprise factor, the fanatism of the attackers, and the internal struggle between the Muslims themselves.
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Old November 25th, 2012, 08:56 AM   #62

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The need for help only became apparent in the aftermath of Manziket. The late Macedonian dynasty emperors (such as Lekapenos, Phokas and Tzimiskes) turned on the offensive and reconquered a lot of territory from the crumbling Caliphate, and Byzantium didn't need military assistance since it could have handled most of the Arab threats in the region.

The Turks began invading in 1073 and the Crusade occured in 1095. Regardless of the nasty things the Franks did later, they certainly helped Byzantium in the First Crusade.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 10:40 AM   #63

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"For the Byzantines, it must be said at the outset, both ideas and forms of holy war— jihad and crusade—were abhorrent... "
I'm fairly certain the Byzantines were familiar with the concept of a religiously sanctioned, justified and promoted war. The last war with the Sassanids definitely took on a holy war character that seemed little different from the Latins or the Arabs in their holy wars.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 11:46 AM   #64
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I'm fairly certain the Byzantines were familiar with the concept of a religiously sanctioned, justified and promoted war. The last war with the Sassanids definitely took on a holy war character that seemed little different from the Latins or the Arabs in their holy wars.
Üdvözlünk a Historum, Sher Khan.

I'm fairly certain that you really ought to read some of my posts all along this and related threads.

The Medieval Romans were entirely unfamiliar with the concept of penance of the sins by warfare, aka the Crusader Spirit.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 12:05 PM   #65

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Certainly, each group - the Latins, the Greeks and the Arabs had their particularities when it came to the idea of a religiously sanctioned war. However I do think the excerpt is incorrect to assume that the idea would be abhorrent to the Orthodox. Strange, peculiar and even laughable or looked down upon as primitive by them, but not beyond their ethos. Similarly, crusading isn't that unique in having an origin that in theory seems defensive. The religious nature of the last Byzantine-Sassanid War certain began this way with the attacks on Jerusalem. And even jihad in its theoretical origins was very defensive in its reasoning and creation.

Like the armed pilgrimage Crusading started as, Jihad started not as any kind of holy war but physical and spiritual obeisance by the early Muslims. The concepts of an aggressive, expansionist form of holy war to secure, strengthen and extend the borders of an empire of faith comes no later than around 780 or so, over a hundred and fifty years after Muhammad and around the same period we see this same shift in Crusading ideology.

Each group had a holy war that was internally consistent with their cultural and theological traditions, but in the end they were all based on old Roman just war concepts.

And hola to you, too.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 12:43 PM   #66
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Certainly, each group - the Latins, the Greeks and the Arabs had their particularities when it came to the idea of a religiously sanctioned war. However I do think the excerpt is incorrect to assume that the idea would be abhorrent to the Orthodox. Strange, peculiar and even laughable or looked down upon as primitive by them, but not beyond their ethos. Similarly, crusading isn't that unique in having an origin that in theory seems defensive. The religious nature of the last Byzantine-Sassanid War certain began this way with the attacks on Jerusalem. And even jihad in its theoretical origins was very defensive in its reasoning and creation.

Like the armed pilgrimage Crusading started as, Jihad started not as any kind of holy war but physical and spiritual obeisance by the early Muslims. The concepts of an aggressive, expansionist form of holy war to secure, strengthen and extend the borders of an empire of faith comes no later than around 780 or so, over a hundred and fifty years after Muhammad and around the same period we see this same shift in Crusading ideology.

Each group had a holy war that was internally consistent with their cultural and theological traditions, but in the end they were all based on old Roman just war concepts.

And hola to you, too.
Nope.

The Penance for Sins warfare of the Crusaders was not directly related with the Roman just war concept, not even from Augustine.

Neither was the entirely different Muslim Jihad, essentially the universal imposition by force of the their religious law with an at least partial massive forced conversion.

Regarding the eastern Christianity, either concept of Holy War was entirely alien for them, and BTW explicitly rejected by them too.

If you may be aware of any explicit example of either Jihad- or Crusader-like Holy War among the Medieval Romans, please share it with us.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 01:46 PM   #67

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As I said, there are peculiarities to each. But the basic premise remains a just war. This is where the concept of taking up arms to help besieged Christian brethren comes from in the Crusading spirit. The idea of penance for sins is unique to the idea of pilgrimage, but that only made up a part of Crusading ideology. Taking up pilgrimage for expiation of sins and souls predates the crusades obviously, and its inclusion was what mobilized otherwise uninvolved soldiers to march east. But the idea of fighting for the faith and receiving indulgences was already in existence as Gregory VII offered that very deal to knights fighting in Spain a few decades before Urban. It is a just war concept that was married to the cultural practice of pilgrimage and relic worship that the Benedictines had fostered.

When the True Cross was taken in 614, the war took on very religious overtones. Heraclius reached out to Christian client states, the church became his biggest sponsor, coins were issued with maxims about God aiding the Romans, the temple at Gandzak was razed, and the True Cross returned with ceremony to top it all off.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 02:09 PM   #68
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As I said, there are peculiarities to each. But the basic premise remains a just war. This is where the concept of taking up arms to help besieged Christian brethren comes from in the Crusading spirit. The idea of penance for sins is unique to the idea of pilgrimage, but that only made up a part of Crusading ideology. Taking up pilgrimage for expiation of sins and souls predates the crusades obviously, and its inclusion was what mobilized otherwise uninvolved soldiers to march east. But the idea of fighting for the faith and receiving indulgences was already in existence as Gregory VII offered that very deal to knights fighting in Spain a few decades before Urban. It is a just war concept that was married to the cultural practice of pilgrimage and relic worship that the Benedictines had fostered.

When the True Cross was taken in 614, the war took on very religious overtones. Heraclius reached out to Christian client states, the church became his biggest sponsor, coins were issued with maxims about God aiding the Romans, the temple at Gandzak was razed, and the True Cross returned with ceremony to top it all off.
As you said, a few decades before Urbano II; it was already the same unique process of the Crusader Spirit.

I guess that taking your idea of a "just war" in such a wide & unspecific way there simply have never been any "unjust war" from the standpoint of those who might decide to begin any.

There have been of course what you call "religious overtones" in several wars; I understand that even General Patton asked for the help of God for his battles; but that didn't make his battles any Holy War.

In 614 Heraclius was simply fighting against powerful Persian invaders of his empire; irrespectively on any religious consideration, he had little choice but to fight back. His primary goal was never restricted just to recover any sacred object; he was literally fighting for the survival of the Empire. Such typical regular warfare had nothing to do with the Crusader Spirit several centuries later.

You are simply comparing oranges with apples.

The regular Crusader of the 11th, 12th or 13th centuries had first sinned (let say plunder & murder at homeland), then he went to slaughter some purported enemies of the Church chosen by his priests in the remote Holy Land for the forgiveness of his sins and to guarantee a place for him in Heaven after death; there was nothing even remotely similar from the three parties imperialist contest over the Middle East (Persians- Romans- Muslims) a whole half millennium ago.

Last edited by sylla1; November 26th, 2012 at 02:18 PM.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 03:56 PM   #69

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#27 and #42 for the win. Dreamweaver, yeah! Lizard man...meh.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 03:58 PM   #70
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Wasn't aware that we may be in any contest here...
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