Monday, February 18, 2008

Lao Giao comments:

"Fascinating. I am not familiar with the writings of de Maistre. Did he know that the Crusades and the Inquisition were as bloody as the French Revolution? Did he believe that there was water above the sky, as Genesis tells us?"

Thank you, Lao Giao. To take your second question first, de Maistre was not only a keen student of the exact sciences of his day, which he perfectly understood, but also believed that the bible was the word of God. So he believed in the Deluge and he refused to accept or even take seriously the idea that the world might be millions, not thousands, of years old.

He would have known all about the crusades and inquisition, though I have not seen them mentioned in his writings. I don't suppose he'd have had any trouble justifying these bloody uses of power. Civilization, he thought--Christian civilization of course--always requires such uses of power.

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