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    Undergraduate London's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post
    Not that I doubt that killings happened in the name of Christ (I've read of a few in the sagas), but do you have any scholarly resources that specify exactly when and where the church was doing these mass killings? Again, not that I doubt the claim, necessarily, but I've often heard claims like these, that, when you actually investigate them, aren't exactly accurate. For instance, we had a great board member here, a Wiccan named Technomage, who did his best to dispel a lot the burning times mythology that crept into his faith thanks to inaccurate research, mostly done by non-academics at the turn of the 20th century. Most of the current scholarly work on the subject suggested that the numbers were far far fewer than had previously been suggested, that it happened over a very great expanse of time, with certain periods of increased persecution, and that it almost always involved local governments and not the church, and in fact, the church often went to great pains to stop the persecution.
    I know of Technomage and his discussions.

    Not sure how pernickety we want to be about whether we attribute the killings to "The Church" or an individual who performs the atrocities in the name of Christ but here are a couple of references for starters

    Ramsay MacMullen notes that in 681 a council of bishops at Toledo called on civil authorities to "seize and behead all those guilty of non-Christian practices of whatever sort."

    Bernard Walter Scholz Carolingian Chronicles: Royal Frankish Annals and Nithard's Histories. Charlmagne Massacre of Verden

    Wilhelm Teudt mentions the site of the massacre in his 1929 book Germanische Heiligtümer ('Germanic Shrines')

    Landscape architect Wilhelm Hübotter designed a memorial that was built at a possible site for the massacre.

    Alessandro Barbero says that, regarding Charlemagne and the Massacre of Verden. The massacre "produced perhaps the greatest stain on his reputation".

    Capitulatio de partibus Saxoniae (Latin "Ordinances concerning Saxony") is the Legal Code issued by Charlemagne and imposed upon the Saxon during the Saxon Wars in 785. The laws of the Capitulatio de partibus Saxoniae prescribe death for various Saxon infringements, including refusing to convert from their native Germanic Elder Ways to Christianity, and fines for actions deemed lesser violations. Despite the laws, the Saxons continued to reject Charlemagne's rule and attempts at Christianization, continuing to rebel even after Charlemagne's death (such as the Stellinga uprising).


    the conversion of the Vikings took place over centuries. Even when a Danish or Swedish king became Christian and proclaimed his people were Christian, many still practiced their pagan ways and held to the old gods. If you look at the respective countries Histories (Norway, Denmark, Sweeden, Iceland) you will find accounts of different kings and their conversions and how it filtered down to the people or not as the case may be.

    Nordic Religions in the Viking Age by Thomas A. DuBois points out the conflict between pagan and christian religions in the Nordic regions which include the Baltic states and Finland. It is noted in this work that archaeological evidence as well as other written records bring into question the literal accuracy of portions of the sagas. In essence, parts of the sagas could be read as religious and/or political propaganda.


    Birgit and Peter Sawyer "Why Trust the White Christ?" are considered experts on the Viking world, especially when it comes to its encounter with Christianity.
    Richard Fletcher's The Barbarian Conversion ,"Converting by the Sword" is being hailed as a landmark book on the subject
    James Marchand "Althings Work to the Good" is a well-respected translator of primary source material, like the Islendingabók
    Michael Scott Rohan and Allan Scott "Dead Man Converting", have written the only book for a popular audience completely about Scandinavia's conversion.
    James Reston, Jr. "'Be Christian or Die'"

    https://www.christianhistoryinstitut...avia-timeline/

    Thanks for the breakdown.
    you're welcome

    I'll chirp in on the other posts when I get some time ...

    thanks to you both for this discussion always good to refine and throw out assumptions. Good Job the pair of you

  2. #32
    tWebber Adrift's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by London View Post
    I know of Technomage and his discussions.


    Not sure how pernickety we want to be about whether we attribute the killings to "The Church" or an individual who performs the atrocities in the name of Christ but here are a couple of references for starters
    I think its a pretty important distinction. There were plenty of people killing in the name of Christ who had little formal knowledge about Christ or his teachings. Most of the times these murders were done for political or financial gain.

    Ramsay MacMullen notes that in 681 a council of bishops at Toledo called on civil authorities to "seize and behead all those guilty of non-Christian practices of whatever sort."
    What's the context here? Do you have the source? How many were eventually killed?

    Bernard Walter Scholz Carolingian Chronicles: Royal Frankish Annals and Nithard's Histories. Charlmagne Massacre of Verden
    Ah, yes. This is an example of what I was talking about above. This wasn't church sanctioned (as far as I know). It was a revenge killing due to a revolt. What does Scholz say about the subject? Can you quote him?

    Wilhelm Teudt mentions the site of the massacre in his 1929 book Germanische Heiligtümer ('Germanic Shrines')
    Ah. I see you've copied that right from the Wikipedia article. Have you read his work in the subject?

    Landscape architect Wilhelm Hübotter designed a memorial that was built at a possible site for the massacre.

    Alessandro Barbero says that, regarding Charlemagne and the Massacre of Verden. The massacre "produced perhaps the greatest stain on his reputation".
    I see that these are both from the same wikipedia article as the previous one. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massacre_of_Verden

    I was really hoping you had something more substantial than Wikipedia quotes to back your claim.

    Capitulatio de partibus Saxoniae (Latin "Ordinances concerning Saxony") is the Legal Code issued by Charlemagne and imposed upon the Saxon during the Saxon Wars in 785. The laws of the Capitulatio de partibus Saxoniae prescribe death for various Saxon infringements, including refusing to convert from their native Germanic Elder Ways to Christianity, and fines for actions deemed lesser violations. Despite the laws, the Saxons continued to reject Charlemagne's rule and attempts at Christianization, continuing to rebel even after Charlemagne's death (such as the Stellinga uprising).
    I see you've cited word-for-word this Wikipedia article for that bit of knowledge: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capitul...tibus_Saxoniae

    Do you have anything substantial. Preferably something not based on Wikipedia articles? Something directly sanctioned by the church? If this is the best you have, I can see now why you felt the distinction between government sanctioned and Church sanctioned "pernickety".

    the conversion of the Vikings took place over centuries. Even when a Danish or Swedish king became Christian and proclaimed his people were Christian, many still practiced their pagan ways and held to the old gods. If you look at the respective countries Histories (Norway, Denmark, Sweeden, Iceland) you will find accounts of different kings and their conversions and how it filtered down to the people or not as the case may be.
    Yes. I'm relatively familiar with Nordic history. I've been studying the sagas a bit this year.

    Nordic Religions in the Viking Age by Thomas A. DuBois points out the conflict between pagan and christian religions in the Nordic regions which include the Baltic states and Finland. It is noted in this work that archaeological evidence as well as other written records bring into question the literal accuracy of portions of the sagas. In essence, parts of the sagas could be read as religious and/or political propaganda.
    I have no doubt that the sagas have been exaggerated. I'll hopefully receive a copy of his book by the end of this week. Now that I see that you have a habit of googling and then copying your sources without citation, I notice that the above quote is a direct lift from a review by a guy named Bruce from this website http://www.indiabookstore.net/isbn/9780812217148. So I take it you haven't actually read the book yourself.

    Birgit and Peter Sawyer "Why Trust the White Christ?" are considered experts on the Viking world, especially when it comes to its encounter with Christianity.
    Richard Fletcher's The Barbarian Conversion ,"Converting by the Sword" is being hailed as a landmark book on the subject
    James Marchand "Althings Work to the Good" is a well-respected translator of primary source material, like the Islendingabók
    Michael Scott Rohan and Allan Scott "Dead Man Converting", have written the only book for a popular audience completely about Scandinavia's conversion.
    James Reston, Jr. "'Be Christian or Die'"

    https://www.christianhistoryinstitut...avia-timeline/
    Have you read any of these works?

    you're welcome

    I'll chirp in on the other posts when I get some time ...

    thanks to you both for this discussion always good to refine and throw out assumptions. Good Job the pair of you
    Thank you.
    Last edited by Adrift; 02-24-2015 at 12:59 AM.

  3. #33
    Undergraduate London's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post


    I was really hoping you had something more substantial than Wikipedia quotes to back your claim.
    sure my sources and citations in that post were poorly chosen although there's nothing wrong with those sources perse, read them and see Yep I googled them, I wanted to start with mainstream and easy because I was being lazy and because I wanted to see how serious you were in your quest for information regarding this topic, apologies for testing No hard feelings I hope.



    Do you have anything substantial. Preferably something not based on Wikipedia articles? Something directly sanctioned by the church? If this is the best you have, I can see now why you felt the distinction between government sanctioned and Church sanctioned "pernickety".
    Any good book on the history of the church will give you ample sources , if they are a) good b) truthful.

    Two books I can personally recommend are James Russell's Germanization of Early Medieval Christianity, it covers the conversion topic pretty succinctly, Can't remember if he gives citations regarding the slaughters but what he does do well is look at what conversion actually meant back then. There is also Medieval Scandinavia: From Conversion to Reformation, circa 800-1500 (The Nordic Series) by Birgit Sawyer which gives some information, I'm not 100% sold on either but they might whet your appetite. How substantial and scholarly would you like?

    Anyhow as I actually like to be persnickety I will concede that some of these forced conversions were done by the Gauls, of whom Charles Martel was the leader. Admittedly he used mainly Muslim invaders to procure the lands. But where the church gets its fingers in the pie is that, through no fault of his own, he was born out of wedlock. His father being a high ranking duke, and his mother also a noble, as they were not married when he was conceived this hindered him to fully claim his father's title, or pass himself as noble.

    So of course the Bishop of Rome offered him a workaround. Well he actually offered it to Martel's grandson Charlemagne. As the Bishop of Rome was considered at that time leader of the church the buck stops there, Vis a Vis the church did it! The deal was that the bishop of Rome would ordain him (chalemagne) in the name of "god" as king of all of Europe if he would embrace Christianity and impose it upon all of his subjects. He could then claim by "divine right" that which he could not claim by blood. And thereby Charlemagne found himself in a symbiotic relationship with the church. Everywhere he conquered, he had to force everyone to convert or he couldn't establish his rule effectively.

    article web doc here

    If you read Ch 5 it specifically talks about this and yes the author cites all his sources. Is that better?


    Yes. I'm relatively familiar with Nordic history. I've been studying the sagas a bit this year.
    you might find this helpful then, as I'm not sure that snorri is necessarily the best source for heathen traditions

    https://notendur.hi.is//~eybjorn/ugm...dskaparmal.pdf


    Cheers
    Last edited by London; 02-25-2015 at 10:26 PM. Reason: correcting links

  4. #34
    tWebber Carrikature's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post
    Odd. I'm not sure how else one would come to find their faith. Surely they asked philosophical questions, even if unknowingly, when they accepted Christianity.
    I find it more odd that you find this odd. The vast majority of Christians I have known did not start by asking philosophical questions, even if unknowingly. Instead, those converts I have known most often match BP's description. The rest have predominantly been raised within the tenets of Christianity and may or may not ever reach a point where they can move past presuppositionalism. It's far rarer, in my experience, for a person to pursue philosophy and end up in Christianity. Most follow something close to my own story, where investigation of science, history and philosophy pushes them out of Christianity and into non-theism or some unique flavor of supernaturalism.
    I'm not here anymore.

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    tWebber Adrift's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carrikature View Post
    I find it more odd that you find this odd. The vast majority of Christians I have known did not start by asking philosophical questions, even if unknowingly. Instead, those converts I have known most often match BP's description. The rest have predominantly been raised within the tenets of Christianity and may or may not ever reach a point where they can move past presuppositionalism. It's far rarer, in my experience, for a person to pursue philosophy and end up in Christianity. Most follow something close to my own story, where investigation of science, history and philosophy pushes them out of Christianity and into non-theism or some unique flavor of supernaturalism.
    Hmm. I don't know. I had an unorthodox upbringing, and was raised to not accept pat answers to tough theological questions. Many of my Christian friends and acquaintances also have a more nuanced and intellectual view of faith. Blind faith is structurally weak, and its surprising to me that anyone could maintain that structure for very long without asking some big questions.

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    tWebber Carrikature's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post
    Hmm. I don't know. I had an unorthodox upbringing, and was raised to not accept pat answers to tough theological questions. Many of my Christian friends and acquaintances also have a more nuanced and intellectual view of faith. Blind faith is structurally weak, and its surprising to me that anyone could maintain that structure for very long without asking some big questions.
    At the risk of derailing this thread further, I don't disagree with you about blind faith. I have seen people ask some big questions (and often this happens at an early age). The responses tend to shut down those sorts of questions, though. We're told (and I can say we since this includes my background) that we don't need all the answers, and that we shouldn't be doubting. We're told that the Bible answers the important questions, and anything else we can just ask God someday. We're told to pray that God will help us trust him more instead of doubting. I've even heard it said that such questions are tools of the devil meant to make us stumble, but that they're tests to help us trust more completely.

    I've known people who literally believe that fossils are things God put in the ground because he knew that humans are curious, effectively turning fossils into some sort of neat toy for us to play with. I've led a bible study (when I was still a Christian) addressing how Christians spend money in terms of how the early church used their assets, watched people follow their own logical conclusions to a social welfare state then stop dead when they realize it contradicts their own worldview regarding money. They don't know how to resolve the problem, so they decide their logical conclusion must be mistaken somehow and carry on as they were before. It's a pretty simple problem to solve even from within the Bible itself, but not one of them could figure it out. "I must have been mistaken" was all the answer they needed.

    Suffice to say that it's not necessarily that big questions won't be raised, but that they are swiftly and summarily dismissed without requiring any sort of serious treatment, let alone a real answer.
    Last edited by Carrikature; 02-26-2015 at 12:06 AM.
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  7. Amen Cerealman amen'd this post.
  8. #37
    Undergraduate London's Avatar
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    The Saga of Olaf the Holy

  9. #38
    tWebber Adrift's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by London View Post
    sure my sources and citations in that post were poorly chosen although there's nothing wrong with those sources perse, read them and see Yep I googled them, I wanted to start with mainstream and easy because I was being lazy and because I wanted to see how serious you were in your quest for information regarding this topic, apologies for testing No hard feelings I hope.





    Any good book on the history of the church will give you ample sources , if they are a) good b) truthful.

    Two books I can personally recommend are James Russell's Germanization of Early Medieval Christianity, it covers the conversion topic pretty succinctly, Can't remember if he gives citations regarding the slaughters but what he does do well is look at what conversion actually meant back then. There is also Medieval Scandinavia: From Conversion to Reformation, circa 800-1500 (The Nordic Series) by Birgit Sawyer which gives some information, I'm not 100% sold on either but they might whet your appetite. How substantial and scholarly would you like?

    Anyhow as I actually like to be persnickety I will concede that some of these forced conversions were done by the Gauls, of whom Charles Martel was the leader. Admittedly he used mainly Muslim invaders to procure the lands. But where the church gets its fingers in the pie is that, through no fault of his own, he was born out of wedlock. His father being a high ranking duke, and his mother also a noble, as they were not married when he was conceived this hindered him to fully claim his father's title, or pass himself as noble.

    So of course the Bishop of Rome offered him a workaround. Well he actually offered it to Martel's grandson Charlemagne. As the Bishop of Rome was considered at that time leader of the church the buck stops there, Vis a Vis the church did it! The deal was that the bishop of Rome would ordain him (chalemagne) in the name of "god" as king of all of Europe if he would embrace Christianity and impose it upon all of his subjects. He could then claim by "divine right" that which he could not claim by blood. And thereby Charlemagne found himself in a symbiotic relationship with the church. Everywhere he conquered, he had to force everyone to convert or he couldn't establish his rule effectively.

    article web doc here

    If you read Ch 5 it specifically talks about this and yes the author cites all his sources. Is that better?




    you might find this helpful then, as I'm not sure that snorri is necessarily the best source for heathen traditions

    https://notendur.hi.is//~eybjorn/ugm...dskaparmal.pdf


    Cheers
    On most message boards I visit (and especially here on Theologyweb), its typically considered bad form to cite material without providing the source you referenced. It strikes of plagiarism and (as you admit) laziness. Generally speaking, Wikipedia is not considered a reliable source, especially when someone specifically asks for "scholarly resources". The random book review citation was probably the oddest of the bunch. Might be understandable if it were a blog post. But it was literally a paragraph long book review.

    But yeah, I know how to google, so none of that was really that helpful, and didn't show me anything I didn't already know for the most part. What I meant by my question: "do you have any scholarly resources that specify exactly when and where the church was doing these mass killings?" was, can you provide books or peer reviewed papers, that you have read or are familiar with, by reputable historians who's qualifications and primary field of research covers the period and people under discussion? Preferably work that doesn't stray too far outside the mainstream scholarly consensus.

    Per the two books you recommend here, have you actually read these books, and do they directly support your claim that: "the church was still doing mass killings as late as 1200's because some refused to convert. They executed those that would not convert, most notabley in Sweden and Norway"?

    As for Snorri, again, I'm aware of the issues with his work, but you do agree that he's an important resource for historians, right? At any rate, when I said that I've been studying the sagas this year, I wasn't referring only to Snorri's works.
    Last edited by Adrift; 02-26-2015 at 08:45 PM.

  10. #39
    tWebber Darth Executor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post
    Doesn't that seem rather high for such a small religion? Why do you think so many Heathens are atheists?
    It's fairly low for an implicitly ethnocentric religion. Just look at Judaism.
    "As for my people, children are their oppressors, and women rule over them. O my people, they which lead thee cause thee to err, and destroy the way of thy paths." Isaiah 3:12

    There is no such thing as innocence, only degrees of guilt.

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