Wars of Religion (so called) b - RR160E09b

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Lesson[edit]

Professor: Rushdoony, Dr. R. J.
Title: Wars of Religion (so called)_b
Course: Course - World History
Subject: Subject:History
Lesson#: 19
Length: 0:46:23
TapeCode: RR160E9b
Audio: Chalcedon Archive
Transcript: .docx Format
World History.jpg

This transcript is unedited. It was:
Archived by the Mt. Olive Tape Library
Digitized, transcribed, and published by Christ Rules
Posted by with permission.


[Tape continues]

Because in the process you prove yourself superior to all the poor suckers you con. This is why Latin America is not making any progress. You have in Latin America some very tremendous natural resources but because of the Spanish tradition which is anti-work there’s no progress. You recall Doctor Sinfolds [sp?] comment on this aspect of Latin America. You can go to Brazil today and see the areas where there is industrial progress; it’s the areas of protestant growth. And those areas will be just like Los Angeles or San Francisco or any other American city and people walk faster and are more active on the streets in those cities than in the more purely Spanish tradition cities where the Catholic tradition prevails. Now we shall deal more with France next time because we’ll be concentrating to begin with on Louis XIV but France very briefly now is really several nations brought together as one to form a central state. We think of France as made up of one people, this is not true. And it was once several nations, the Burgundians were a very powerful state for centuries, even more powerful than the French and for centuries they were perhaps the wealthiest, perhaps the most advanced country in Europe. [00:03:07]

Then many of the very advanced countries of the middle...[edit]

Then many of the very advanced countries of the middle ages were what is now portions of southern France. The language of Paris and that area was made the official language for other parts of the country and the languages of the others suppressed by force to make them all Frenchmen. The Britons to this day maintain their own language although only this last year, 1971, did they finally get permission legally through the courts to name their children Celtic names because the Britons are related to the Irish and to the Welsh and to the Scots. And their names are long ones, closer to the Welsh then to the Irish and Scotch. And they were illegal until recently. On top of that the Reformation added religious disunity to France, it was divided into Huguenot and Catholic. The country was brought to a unity by a Huguenot leader, Henry of [unknown] who ruled as Henry IV who became one of the most popular rulers of all French history. Henry IV however found that he could only bring unity finally by himself becoming a nominal Catholic, however he did issue the edict of [unknown], guaranteeing freedom and religious liberties to the Huguenots. Even then however some of the fanatical Catholics did not trust Henry IV and in 1610 he was assassinated by one of them. His son was Louis XIIV, his grandson, Louis XIV. It was under Louis XIIV whose mother was Marie [unknown] at [unknown] became the actual ruler of France and played so powerful a part. [00:06:01]

We will come briefly to the role of [unknown] in a...[edit]

We will come briefly to the role of [unknown] in a moment or two. To conclude now we will take more than a little time to analyze the Thirty Years War between 1618 and 1648 which brought about the disintegration of Germany. Germany by 1600 in the eighty years or so after Luther had seen a decline in the protestant faith among Lutherans at least, there had grown to be a great deal of formalism and stagnation as well as among the Catholics. There had been a number of games religiously in Germany by the Calvinists who had not existed Peace of Augsburg in 1555. The Peace of Augsburg said that each state could prescribe its own religion and whatever the head of state prescribed would be the religion for that particular German state. Now at the time the Peace of Augsburg was made in 1555 there were just Lutherans and the Catholics. However what happened was that the Calvinists moved in and very quickly began to make converts out of a number of heirs who became rulers of very key and strategic realms. So you have a third element now in the picture, the Calvinist states or kingdoms or dukedoms or principalities depending on their sides. Moreover some of these were very important in the election of the emperor and the Hapsburg power was very unhappy about this. On top of that the Hapsburgs began to feel that it was especially important for them both to keep the lid from blowing off in the Netherlands which they were trying to make Catholic again to have a solid land bridge from Austria clear across to Belgium and Netherlands as we know them today so that they would have a solid land mass across there. [00:08:51]

To them this was a part of their grand strategy to...[edit]

To them this was a part of their grand strategy to conquer that area. And so they began to take moves to conquer that domain. And with this began the Thirty Years War. The Danes and the Swedes moved in to protect the Protestant parties and others moved in until all Europe was involved in it, the French moved in also although Catholic on the Protestant side under Cardinal [unknown] because Cardinal [unknown] did not want to see the Spanish power predominate. This is why when I spoke earlier of the so called Wars of Religion in this century and a half that it was so called because very often the lineup was very peculiar and [unknown], a cardinal, was working against the Catholics because he knew the Catholic victory was really the victory of Spain and he preferred a weak Spain and a strong France. Now one of the tragedies of the war, the Thirty Years War was that all of Germany became the battlefield for thirty years. The armies then were mercenary armies, didn’t make any difference whether they were supposed to be Protestant or Catholic they were hoodlums out of the slums. Most of their pay they figured was to be gotten by conquest and so you had the ugly picture of both sides ravaging the country and raping and murdering at will. So that when they would go through whether they were supposed to be a protestant or Catholic army they raped and killed everybody irrespective. And the nuns would be raped by Catholic troops as well as by Protestant troops and the Protestant villagers the same way. What happened to Germany in the Thirty Years War I think can be best described by going to a couple of books, one the Cambridge Modern History, the Thirty Years War, this entire volume deals with it, just to read a couple pages. [00:11:51]

Summing up some of the damages...[edit]

Summing up some of the damages:

“But the political losses and gains which the peace of [unknown] entail upon the emperor and its princes sink alike into insignificance and even the undeniable advance towards religious freedom marked by the adoption of that peace of the principle of equality between the recognized religious confessions is obscured when we turn to consider the general effects of the war now ended upon Germany and the German nation. These effects either material or moral cannot be more than faintly indicated here but together they furnish perhaps the most appalling demonstrations of the consequences of war to be found in history. There have been worse wars in history in the amount of people killed, in the total devastation, the Jewish Roman War, the worst war of all of history in its total effect, but this is unique that here was something sustained for thirty years. The mighty impulses which the great movements of the Renaissance and the Reformation had imparted to the aspirations and efforts of contemporary German life were quenched in the century of religious conflict which ended with the exhausting struggle of the Thirty Years War. The mainspring of the national life was broken and to all seeming broken forever. The ruin of agriculture was inevitably the most striking as it is the most far reaching result of this all destructive war. Each one of those marches, counter marches, sieges, reliefs, invasions, occupations, evacuations and reoccupations which we have noted and a far larger number of military movements that we have passed by were accompanied by devastations carried out impartially by friend or foe. For the peasants who dwelt upon the land there was no personal safety except in flight. Their harvest, their cattle, the roof over their heads was at the mercy of the soldiers and as the war went on whole districts were converted into deserts. Bohemia where the war broke out had the earliest experience of its desolating effects. Above all in the sorely tried north west of the kingdom but its sufferings reached their height long after the Bohemian rising had been crushed as it seemed forever. [00:14:57]

Early in the last decade of the war the destruction...[edit]

Early in the last decade of the war the destruction of villages from which most parts of the empire suffered was probably here carried to the most awful length of a total of thirty five thousand bohemian villages it is stated that hardly more than six thousand were left standing. Of thirty five thousand, six thousand. The sufferings of Monrovia were in much the same proportions and even more protracted. Those of Silesia only ended when it was made over by Saxony into the emperor’s care at the Peace of [unknown]. Upper and lower Austria also enjoyed some relief in the last period of the war when the main anxiety of the emperor was to keep it out of its hereditary dominions. The inflictions to which Maxmillian [unknown] was subjected during Victoria’s campaigns of [unknown] and the subsequent invasion of Bernard of Whitmore was followed by far more grievous treatment by the troops upon their march.”

Then he goes on to describe how one area after another was destroyed and the population diminished by at least two thirds from over sixteen to under six million. Now a part of that was by immigration, people just left, a lot of it through murder. And as a result the area was for a long time in ruins but I think if you still cannot get the picture I will quote now from another work by Gardner on the Thirty Year’s War. [00:17:00]

“What a peace it was when it really came at last, whatever...[edit]

“What a peace it was when it really came at last, whatever life there was under that deadly blast of war had been attracted to the camps, the soldier’s camps, the strong men who had lost all turned soldier that he might be able to rob others in turn. The young girl who in better times would have passed on to a life of honorable wedlock with some youth who had been the companion of her childhood in the sports around the village fountain had turned aside for very starvation to a life of shame in the train of one or other of the armies by which her home had been made desolate. In the later years of the war it was known that a body of forty thousand fighting men drew along with it a loathsome following of no less than hundred and forty thousand men, women and children contributing nothing to the efficiency of the army and all of them living at the expense of the miserable peasants who still contrived to hold on to their ruined fields. If these were to live they must steal what yet remained to be stolen, they must devour with the insatiable hunger of locusts what yet remained to be devoured. And then if sickness came or wounds and sickness was no infrequent visitors of these camps what remained but misery or death nor was it much better with a soldier’s themselves.”

[00:18:53]

That’s a grim picture, a hundred and forty thousand...[edit]

That’s a grim picture, a hundred and forty thousand camp followers after a camp of forty thousand all waiting for a chance to move into the next city so that you can imagine what it was like whenever they conquered a city and one after another every city fell. Germany was ruined. It took a long time for it to overcome, within a generation or two there was of course peace and order but vast areas still depopulated, unhabituated and wild. The Thirty Year’s War has long been seen as a kind of model of guerilla warfare and so it has gained a great deal of attention in modern times by people who see it as in a sense the kind of thing that could happen again. There are certain differences however, one of the things that marked the most notable difference is this: in those days armies moved on their feet. This has ceased to be true in the western world; especially in the last thirty years the armies of the western world have lost all ability to move on their feet. They move by truck and by jeep. The last army that could still move on their feet in the western world was the Russian and that has been thoroughly mechanized now and the average army recruit throughout the western world no longer has the capacity to march. The majority are now city boys who are not used as farm boys are to long, long marches on their feet. They can’t take it. They are not drilled for it, they aren’t put on maneuvers now that take them on long marches. This is passé, the only western army that still has a sizable element of farm boys who can move on their feet is the Russian but even they do not march, they have trucks. [00:21:42]

There is only one army on any consequence today that...[edit]

There is only one army on any consequence today that goes on its feet and that’s the Chinese. So that the ability to march which was once characteristic of our armies is gone, which is one of the things in thinking about military strategy that every militaristic has to reckon today. The modern army if it took a long march would very quickly be so footsore it would be out of commission. It would have blistered feet which would become quickly infected and it would be unable to move. This is why the modern military strategy for guerrilla warfare is primarily urban where there are short distances, lots of roadways and lots of maneuverability and there the type of strategy of the Thirty Years War and of guerrilla warfare can be readily applied. The Thirty Years War was thus a kind of classic in warfare. It was a classic in the kind of total destruction that can be wrought. It was a classic in the senselessness of a protracted war in which motives and counter motives get so involved so that finally nobody knows how to quit until finally everyone became exhausted. The settlement finally did work to a degree to the same end that had been purposed at the beginning, each area was given the right to choose its own religion so that nothing was settled, it was back in effect to the status quo. It remains a landmark in the history of Europe of what war can do to set back a civilization. Our time is just about up now, just briefly before we continue. It marked also the transition to a secular approach in that however much when the war began Spain had in mind the religious conquest of those areas it also had a power play in mind also. [00:24:26]

And before the war had proceeded very far it was the...[edit]

And before the war had proceeded very far it was the political motive that began to predominate rather than the religious concern. Europe was moving rapidly and in this war it came to the fore to a humanistic orientation which was going to dominate the future. That humanistic orientation appeared most openly in Louis XIV and we shall spend a little while on Louis next time. Let us pray.

Almighty God our Heavenly Father, guide us we beseech Thee in the days ahead that we may restore things to their proper place in obedience to Thee, in conformity to Thy word, to Thy praise and glory. Oh Lord our God use us mightily to establish Thy word and the sovereignty of Thy kingdom in our lives and in our times. In Jesus’s name, Amen. [00:26:14]

Are there any questions now about our lesson? Yes?...[edit]

Are there any questions now about our lesson? Yes?

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Yes, well of course the answer is they don’t want to see that at all, it’s like these students whose papers I read at the beginning. Nothing is more obvious from reading history than that the Renaissance saw the rise of tyranny but they see it as the birth of a freedom and this one student said it was the birth of freedom for the individual and the growth of the power of the state as though the two could both happen. Now when people are blind they will not see, all you can do is to hope that perhaps the person can see it and to say they were not wars of religion, they were political wars. If they were wars of religion why were sometimes Catholics fighting against each other and Protestants fighting against each other. Was it because they were Catholics and Protestants or was it because they were primarily statists concerned with power and politics? [00:28:10]

[Unintelligible Question]...[edit]

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Right.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] They were Christians, in most cases they were Christians in name only.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Yes, they were some of them were about Christian as Martin Luther King. Yes.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Yes the situation in Ireland today is called a religious war but first of all there is very, very little almost no orthodoxy among the Protestants which means there is no faith. And second, the Catholics have just about as much religious to them as the Protestants which is next to none. It’s a class warfare, it’s not a religious war.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] They are both guilty, they are both seriously guilty. In the protestant circles the orange men have a virtual kind of secret masonic grip on the country and no protestant who is not a member of their society and no catholic is going to get anywhere without them. On the other hand the catholic majority is by and large you might say they are the Negroes of North Ireland. They represent an element that isn’t very ambitious, doesn’t have much drive, doesn’t work too well but is demanding its rights. [00:30:02]

And you’ve got two groups that see only the faults...[edit]

And you’ve got two groups that see only the faults of the other and none of their own faults and so they are going to go on destroying each other and their country.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] What?

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Oh yes anytime you have people who are stupid and foolish you are going to have an outside influence but they don’t need those, they’ve got enough stupidity on their own to make trouble enough for a dozen countries. [Laughter] I think it’s a serious mistake that many Americans make, they feel they’ve got to pick sides like India and Pakistan and sides in North Ireland as though one has to be right and the other wrong and a good deal of the time in history both sides are wrong. And in these two cases they certainly are. Yes?

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Yes.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Yes. The protestant leadership in the North has provided it with an industrial leadership. On the other hand they have been faltering in recent years, in other words the younger generation has not had the caliber of the older that made it. The south of Ireland wants that and has for a long time. On the other hand I think as things are now while the indications are there are no politicians in the south of Ireland that want to say we don’t want it because that would be political suicide but a lot have nightmares at the thought of having to take it tomorrow if the English say it’s yours, take it. You try and bring peace there, you see. In other words, the government of Ireland must maintain a position to satisfy its people that they want a united Ireland but they know good and well they couldn’t cope with the problem there. [00:32:24]

The second their own industrial power has been developing...[edit]

The second their own industrial power has been developing very rapidly lately so that there’s a growing prosperity in south Ireland. The economic drain of trying to police that portion of Ireland if they were going to get it would really sink them. It really is a situation where there’s no answer because neither side is ready to give in a bit or to listen to reason. Their attitude is kill, that’s the answer. Each side wants to wipe out the other.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] A good question, why did this take fifty years to develop. One of the reasons that has made it come to a head in recent years is that north Ireland has been faltering somewhat. It has been a tremendous area of industrial development and growth but of late it has had as all the world has had an economic crisis. Now add to that economic crisis the fact that you had a leadership that hasn’t moved ahead with the times and has faltered somewhat and you can see how its own leadership would, I mean its own position in the world economy was a little harder hit and the result was that everyone felt it and the ones that were on the bottom felt it the hardest. There are fewer jobs for them and the consequence is is that they are all worked up about it. Just as [unknown] has pointed out, the civil rights act has led to the civil rights revolution, the minimum wage law, it immediately meant that a whole world of negro youth could no longer work so they became revolutionaries. [00:35:02]

They were not fit to make as much as the minimum wage...[edit]

They were not fit to make as much as the minimum wage law said they had to make so they could not be employed. Therefore they became idle, welfare recipients and they became to develop revolutionary ideology. The economic situation in Ireland immediately meant that you had a growing element of Irish youth unemployed ready to listen to revolutionary talk and so the situation was ripe. And of course it keeps feeding on itself. It’s already meant that economically the north of Ireland which was in the [unknown] is really in trouble, you cannot have that kind of civil warfare and have real production. Now how can you maintain economic leadership then? Economic development goes where there’s peace, where you can depend on labor and you don’t have to worry about having your investment bombed out. This is why economic development is going to South Ireland because there are no problems there so people are investing money there. And so the south of Ireland will take it all away from the northern part. Yes?

[Unintelligible Question] [00:36:55]

[Rushdoony] Yes...[edit]

[Rushdoony] Yes. And I don’t think they should be because it is a different area it is not a part of them culturally, it would be tragic.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Right. That’s right.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Well you know when southern Ireland got its freedom most of southern Ireland didn’t want it. The IRA was a minority group, the overwhelming majority of the Catholic clergy was against independence they felt it would lead to secularization, most of the political figures preferred union but you had a minority, the IRA, creating violence, leading to bombing, to sabotage and so on until Britain said we can’t be bothered, turn them loose. And that’s how they got their independence, against the wishes of the majority. Exactly. Yes.

[Unintelligible Question] [00:38:09]

[Rushdoony] Now this always happens you see, history...[edit]

[Rushdoony] Now this always happens you see, history is rarely dominated by a majority, only by dedicated minorities. And the lack of a dedicated minority with a faith for the future means that a revolutionary element can take over and command it in terms of pure hatred. You see. What is needed in Ireland is an element to stand in terms of a Christian faith and to spell out the matter in terms of economics and religion and to get together with people of both sides but there’s no one with the face to do that, twenty thirty years ago there would have been. Today there isn’t because…

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] That’s right, yes. This is the problem.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] He’s a rabble rouser and in my book worthless. He’s an associate of McIntyre who is a rabble rouser, he has nothing to contribute except hatred, he has to bear some of the responsibility for helping create this situation.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] As a Christian he has one message, hatred. He has one message hatred, he has never, never distinguished himself for preaching the gospel to the end that people may be saved. He’s never gone out to the Catholics the message that Jesus Christ is the Savior of Protestant and Catholic alike, that this is what the word of God teaches, he’s gone out to them with the message of the sheerest kind of hatred. I regard him as one of the ugliest characters in Protestantism in our time, he was for a long time before the violence began creating such an atmosphere of violence that he was in essence saying I’m going to make it impossible for Catholic and Protestant ever to talk together. No, I’ll stand before God almighty and accuse that man of being one of the worst characters of our age. What he has done is fearful, he is spewing forth hatred. Put him in that Bernadette Dublin [sp??] some of those others together and consign them to hell which is where they belong. He’s a fearful character, I Read a number of his talks that he gave when he came over here in which McIntyre published. He’s a hate monger, he’s a hate monger. The Protestants and Catholics were living side by side there, they are living side by side in the south of Ireland, this doesn’t mean there haven’t been tensions but to go out and whip up hatred deliberately, deliberately, the bible says that such men are to be avoided, Solomon has a great deal to say on people of that character. Paisley [sp?] is an ugly character and a rabble rouser. Yes? [00:41:30]

[Unintelligible Question]...[edit]

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] He’s still around.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Yes. Oh but you see…yes.

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Well to a degree, yes. Yes?

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] I have many times crossed McIntyre’s path as I’ve gone across country. I’ve seen situations, I can cite one in one detail because I know and still correspond with the people involved. Where a group of seventy five professional men who had walked out of the church because it was modernist went to him and said we want a church that will preach the gospel. He was not interested in doing more than when he met some kid in another city, you want to be a pastor of a church, go over there and take care of those people, he didn’t even bother to sit down and talk to the man, the young man. Now he wasn’t interesting in establishing a church, a people. What he wanted to do in that city was to preach against national council and to preach against this and that and to collect funds and to pass on. Now he could have done far more good in the long run by saying here is a fine group of the finest men in this community who want a church. I claim to be connected with the Bible Presbyterian Church let me establish a church here amongst them. And he could have sent somebody responsible to meet with them, now this has happened not once but many times, many times. He is not interested in building churches with…

[Unintelligible Question]

[Rushdoony] Well because that’s not his main interest, he’s more interested in promoting marches. Now he’s an organizer with the kind of money, with the radio stations, the talent he has, in these years he could have established literally thousands of churches from one end of the United States to the other. thousands. And he’s not done it. He has established a college or two which have been beset by problems and I’ve known people who have been on the faculty members and they say the biggest headache is McIntyre and his unwillingness to do anything but to have him to say he has them. But he can organize a big march on Washington every so often and put a great deal of real talent into organizing that and getting people from California over there and from Maine and Washington all over to march on Washington. [00:44:46]

And he’s put on a big show...[edit]

And he’s put on a big show. Now he has demonstrated that what he wants to do he can do. But to promote the work of Christ’s kingdom he has not done. And he’s raised millions of dollars over these years and what’s there to show for it. All he does is to preach against something or other all the time. And that’s what the people apparently want and they are getting it and that’s why the country is going to hell because its people like McIntyre and [unknown] who get up and are preaching against this and that and are not preaching the gospel, who are not going out and building things. Christian schools, Christian churches. The people are getting what they want, yes?

[Unintelligible Question]

[Tape ends]