Saturday January 16, 2021
SNc Channels:

Search
About Salem-News.com

 

Mar-12-2009 20:31printcomments

The Art of Relaxation Part-1

Murder, the CIA, Witchcraft and The Malleus Maleficarum.

Salem-News.com
Saint Augustine, most revered of Church Doctors, was convinced that devils were fornicating with wanton women. Later quoted in the Malleus Maleficarum, (1485) the words were used to justify the witch hunts of the Inquisition, which resulted in the deaths of thousands of ‘witches’ over a 250-year period.
Courtesy: philosophicalmisadventures.com

(PASO ROBLES, Calif.) - As used here, "Relaxation" describes the act of releasing to the secular arm of government anyone convicted by the Church of crimes against Christianity.

The Church was responsible for the rule, but it would not admit that it was responsible for the death sentence. As an instrument of the Loving God, it would not be proper for the Church to kill.

The secular arm of Caesaropapism - combined rule - was not limited, and the Church fully expected that whoever it relaxed to its partner would be killed [and was].

“Rendition” [from render; to give up] is/was a term used by the CIA, with the approval of the Commander in Chief, to describe the transfer of captives from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, or persons suspected of aiding terrorists, to other nations for interrogation [and who knows what else].

Some victims of “rendition” disappear in much the same way as happened during the Inquisition where, if they did reappear, often it was to be burned at the stake. Giordano Bruno languished seven year in prison before he was burned alive in 1600 [See “Bruno, Giordano” in the Encyclopedia].

The Malleus Maleficarum [available from amazon.com] was written by German Dominican Friars in the latter part of the fifteenth century, and Pope Innocent VIII sanctioned its use. It was the legal instrument used by Catholics, and borrowed by the opposition, to try persons accused of witchcraft. Rev. Montague Summers wrote the Introductions for the 1928 and 1948 editions in which he says:

“In the whole vast literature of witchcraft, the most prominent, the most important, the most authoritative volume, is the Malleus Maleficarum of Heinrich Kramer and James Sprenger. It is a work which must irresistibly capture the attention of men who think, who see, or who are attempting to see, the ultimate reality beyond the accidents of matter, time and space.”

The text makes ghastly reading, so I refer only to its Introductions by the Rev. Montague Summers that provide definitions that give greater meaning to what follows . . . . “For a person rightfully to be adjudged a heretic he must fulfill five conditions:

First, there must an error in his reasoning.

Secondly, the error must be in matters concerning the faith, being contrary to the teachings of the Church as to the true attainment of eternal life. Thirdly, the error must lie in one who has professed [been baptized into] the Catholic faith, for otherwise he would be a Jew or a Pagan, not a heretic.

Fourthly, the error must be of such a nature that he who holds it must still confess some of the truth of Christ touching either His Godhead or his Manhood;

Fifthly, he must pertinaciously and obstinately hold and follow the error.”

St. Augustine described a heretic in the 4th Century as:

“. . . one who either initiates or follows new and false opinions. If a man has never professed the Christian faith, he is not a heretic but simply an infidel, like the Jews or the Gentiles who are outside the faith.” The Devil, according to S. Augustine:

“. . . seeing the human race to be delivered from the worship of idols and devils, stirred up heretics who, under the guise of Christians, should oppose Christian doctrine. So for a man to be a heretic it is necessary that he should have received the Christian faith in baptism. They who are apostates in their heart and refuse to return to the faith are, like impertinent heretics, to be delivered [relaxed] to the secular court.”

The witch-concept was not new, but was less used till the 16th Century when the rules changed with the introduction and use of the Malleus Maleficarm:

“Canon Law says that in the case of heresy it is for the ecclesiastical judge to try and to judge, but for the secular judge to carry out the sentence and to punish; that is, when a capital punishment is in the question, though it is otherwise with other penitential punishments. In the heresy of witches, Diocesans also can hand over to the Civil Courts the duty of trying and judging because the crime of witches is not purely ecclesiastical, being rather civil on account of the temporal injuries [relating to life in the world, not to spiritual life] which they commit; and also because special laws are provided for dealing with witches. In this way it is easiest to proceed with the extermination of witches.”

The “Malleus” was written at a time when public disenchantment with the Church

was high; neither was it declining. Martin Luther's “Justification by Faith” opened the trickle to produce a flood of defectors who did not see themselves as less Christian - or Catholic for that matter - but who hoped to create a purer and kindlier religion based on the Bible-text rather than on the dictates of the Church. Except for that distinction, there was, and is, little difference between the schismatic parts except in ceremony.

Luther was dismayed at what he considered a misinterpretation of the meaning of his “Justification,” never dreaming it would lead to a rejection of Church leadership that he insisted, was established by God, and he took a strong position against defectors.

The Lutheran movement in Germany increased in spite of Luther’s disapproval, and explains the focus of the Counter-Reformation, and the first use of the Malleus there. Protestants, of whatever sect [Calvinist or Lutheran] borrowed from the Malleus Maleficarum’s legal dictums to dissuade defectors from their ranks, thereby adding to the carnage.

Christianity is God by committee. When the committee agrees, all members agree not to disagree, and it is on this basis that Rev. Summers defends the Malleus. Papal Infallibility and the Ecumenical movement recognizes this truth and, if ever Christians as a whole should decide not to disagree, the Catholic Church may again assume the awesome power it once enjoyed as the presumed Leader of Christianity.

When the Holy See of Roman Catholicism decided to enforce the witch-concept, it committed Pope Innocent VIII to its decision, making it his idea that he had to support regardless of any personal feeling to the contrary, as Reverend Montague Summers describes:

“Pope Innocent VIII was a man whose character was consistent with his time.

He lived to see the fall of Granada, the last stronghold of the Moors in Spain, which city surrendered on January 2, 1492. On the 25th of July the same year, he died, but not before using his office to benefit his children.

During his earlier years Giovanni Battista Cibo indulged in an amour with a fair Neopolitan, and his conduct was contrary to strict morality and reasonably to be blamed, but as was proper, both son and daughter were provided for in an ample and munificent manner. In spite of these few faults Innocent VIII was a pontiff who at a most difficult time worthily filled his apostolic dignity” [while disregarding of his vows]. Rev. Summers then quotes Roscoe [?] in one of his Introductions who wrote of Innocent VIII:

“His native disposition seems to have been mild and placable; but the disputed claims of the Roman See, which he conceived it his duty to enforce, led him into embarrassments from which he was with difficulty extricated, and which, without increasing his reputation, destroyed his repose.”.

Anyone who reads the Bull attributed to Innocent VIII [Preface to the Malleus] might well wonder how he could have called himself Innocent. By the same token, his position seems somewhat like that of Jesus in the Christian scheme leading up to the establishment of the Catholic Church. For, according to Rev. Summers again:

“The almost overwhelming difficulties with which Innocent must needs contend if he were, as in conscious bound, to act as the chief Pastor of Christendom, a critical position which he needs must face and endeavor to control, were difficult because, humanly speaking, he knew his efforts had no chance of success.”

Jesus and Pope Innocent VIII felt "bound to act as the Chief Pastor of Christendom," whose role really was to follow the dictates of the Coterie [Holy See] as if it was their own. The Pope, as the Vicar of Christ, is the presumed leader of the Church, but popes are elected and are responsible to The Holy See that elects pope to be the Active Voice of Christendom. And, as has been seen, what God giveth, He can taketh away [ref: the three popes reigning simultaneously].

One ought to read around a text before digging into it to determine how the author's message is slanted. The Rev. Summers made it his purpose to defend the Catholic cause by slanting his writing in favor of the Catholic position. When Rev.

Summers says, "witchcraft maintained a relentless and ruthless war against the prevailing order, and the settled state," readers should recognize that he is speaking of a time when the Church was dominant, and the secular arm of government [Catholics all] was obliged to follow its lead. When Rev.

Summers writes that - "the profoundest thinkers, the acutest and most liberal minds of their day were convinced of the dark reality of witchcraft, of the witch organization," - he refers to the "liberal minds" of anti-Reformist Catholics imbued with a spiritual awareness of the conflict between Catholics and Protestants, and to loyal adherents of their Catholic teaching.

Only then can readers appreciate the insinuations, and sense the urgings of the writer's purpose. Note how Rev. Summers' defense of the Malleus Maleficarum adheres to Vatican dogma:

“S. Augustine set forth the theory, or rather the living fact, of the Two Cities, the City of God and the opposing stronghold of all that is not for God, that is to say of all that is against Him [the anti-Christ of the Church],” then glibly adds: “I wish to emphasize -that stern and constant official opposition to witchcraft, and the prohibition under the severest penalties, the sentence of death itself, was demonstrably not a product of Christianity."

Initially The Church did denounce witchcraft, but reversed itself later. Rev. Summers speaks not of the 16th century, but of the beginning of Christianity as a religion of reason when he says, referring to other religions, and perhaps new Christians:

“So much that was heathen, so much that was bad, was mixed up with what might seem to be simple credulity, and the harmless folk-customs of some grandam [old time] tradition and immemorial usage, a song or country dance mayhap, innocent enough on the surface, and even pleasing, so often were but the cloak and mask for something devilish and obscene, that the Church deemed it necessary to forbid and proscribe the whole superstition [of witchcraft] even when it manifested itself in modest fashion and seemed guileless, innocuous, and of no account.”

Rev. Summers’ Introductions are typical of how deftly one can create intended confusion in the minds of unsuspecting believers . He uses emphasis to overcome syntax. It is less what, than how a thing is said that counts. The Church did repudiate witchcraft totally! However, without breaking so much as his paragraph, Rev. Summers, in another clever slight of pen, reverses himself completely and creates in his next sentence the track on which he will stay for the remainder of his argument.

"For example, to make the wind to blow or to drop is a worldwide fantasy, but . . . [here come the change] at Constantinople, in the reign of Constantine, a warlock . . . was put to death on a charge of binding the wind by magic.”

Constantine was superstitious and a pagan before he won the Battle of Milvian Bridge that convinced him that Christianity possessed a magic at least as great as that of his opponent. When he converted to Christianity he accepted its position regarding witches.

After Constantine’s death the Church compromised its position and saw witches as the means to its end of preventing defections that disputed the perfection of the Institution that, the Church insisted, existed only within it. The Church deemed apostates/heretics worthy of elimination, and that explains why without so much as a hesitation Rev. Summers continues now as if witches are real:

“In Scotland witches used to raise the wind by dipping the corner of a plaid in water and beating it thrice upon a stone, crooning [an incantation)]. Moreover, the law of the Visigoths, which was founded on Roman law, punished with death witches who had killed any person by their spells.” [Witches are real again?].

------------------------------------------------
Kenneth G. Ramey was a 79-year old "writer without a Website" who is generating excellent, provocative articles on the subject of religion and world affairs. We are pleased that Ken's "lone wolf" presence as a writer in the world has been replaced by a spot on our team of writers at Salem-News.com. Raised in Minnesota and California during the dark years of the Great American Depression, Ken is well suited to talk about the powerful forces in the world that give all of us hope and tragedy and everything in between. You can write to Ken at:
darken1@sbcglobal.net




Comments Leave a comment on this story.
Name:

All comments and messages are approved by people and self promotional links or unacceptable comments are denied.



Ananta Androscoggin March 24, 2009 5:30 am (Pacific time)

Then you will have noticed the startling (and horrifying) resemblance between part 3 of the Malleus and the provisions in the Bush regime's "Military Commissions Act." Jusst one of the major blows to the Rule of Law from that batch of #%%^W*#$*(%%. (yeah, I'm peeved)

[Return to Top]
©2021 Salem-News.com. All opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Salem-News.com.


Articles for March 11, 2009 | Articles for March 12, 2009 | Articles for March 13, 2009
Sean Flynn was a photojournalist in Vietnam, taken captive in 1970 in Cambodia and never seen again.

Special Section: Truth telling news about marijuana related issues and events.

Support
Salem-News.com:

Tribute to Palestine and to the incredible courage, determination and struggle of the Palestinian People. ~Dom Martin