Why did Christianity spawn the most evil people in history

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salad
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30 Apr 2021, 11:30 pm

And I honestly mean the some of the most evil in all of world history. Even if Stalin and Hitler were atheists that doesnt negate that throughout all of human and world history the lion's share of evil and atrocities were committed by avowed and zealous Christians, and that is a fact.

I know from the New Testament the figure of Jesus was a pacifist, humanitarian concerned about the plight of the poor and downtrodden, spread the message of love and God to ALL of God's children and thus was one of the few people in world history to believe in a universal brotherhood and sisterhood, as well being the harbinger of grace and redemption rather than fire and brimstone punishment. Yet somehow this central figure of Christianity, this man known to be the Prince of Peace and purveyor of love, somehow this Saint became the symbol of the most hateful, evil, depraved and cancerous scourges in human history, being used to justify the Crusades, Inquisition, Witch Burnings throughout Europe, slaughtering of heretics up until the Enlightenment (which just happens to be the time when Christianity was waning, thus showing a perfectly positive correlation between level of Christian support in Europe and their backwardness), some of the most macabre and harrowing torture devices ever conceived made during the height of Church power in Europe, devices such as these:

https://io9.gizmodo.com/the-10-most-gru ... 1626942115

And not to mention out of all of the religions in world history, the most violent and intolerant one by death toll and atrocities was and is Christianity. Islam also had its share of violence and death toll, but not even on the same scale as Christianity. Not even close.

How can I say that Christians throughout history were more violent than Muslims?? Simple: if one studies the demographics of all the lands conquered by Muslims throughout history one finds documented evidence of non-Muslims coexisting within said Muslim empires which is extrapolated by the Jizya tax records, a tax that only applies to non-Muslims; obviously the use of a Jizya tax shows a level of intolerance, but at least they weren't slaughtered like they were in Christian Europe. Christian Europe was so intolerant that not only did there not exist a single pagan or religious minority throughout all of Europe during the height of the Church's power, but even other branches of Christianity weren't tolerated and were systematically wiped out, such as the Alibgensians:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albigensian_Crusade

During the beginning of Christianity's spread throughout Europe the Roman Emperors Theodosius and many of his successors enacted decrees ordering the forced subjugation and slaughter of the Pagans, as well as the razing of their shrines and persecution of other heretics. Emperor Justinian himself ordered the slaughter of many pagans. Charlemagne, 1st Emperor of the Carolingian dynasty himself ordered the total slaughter of his non-Christian enemies.

I'm from Palestine and every Palestinian knows how when the Crusaders entered our lands they systematically cleansed and expunged the entire population of Jerusalem of every Muslim and Jewish man, woman and child. The blood was so deep according to some of the Crusader chroniclers that the blood reached the shins of the horses.

And many of history's worst atrocities were sanctioned and spearheaded by Zealous Christians. The conquistadors who ravaged and raped the Latin American continent were backed by the Catholic Church and many of their atrocities were heavily documented by Bartholomew de La Casas:

http://www.cervantesvirtual.com/obra-vi ... 5e_18.html

I could go on forever but that would be tedious.

How did a religion that was founded by one of the greatest human beings of all time give rise to some of the most barbaric and savage monsters in all of world history???


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kitesandtrainsandcats
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30 Apr 2021, 11:35 pm

Did Christianity spawn violent people or did violent people use Christianity as a tool for their violence?


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kitesandtrainsandcats
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30 Apr 2021, 11:38 pm

This nature of topic appears at intervals,
it might be smart to look up those threads and see how many times your question has already been answered.


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Last edited by kitesandtrainsandcats on 30 Apr 2021, 11:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

cyberdad
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30 Apr 2021, 11:39 pm

My recollection was reading that the vikings who formed the Varangian Rus (the empire that would become Russia) contemplated both islam and christianity as faiths due to their spread "by the sword" among warlike tribes. They settled on christianity only because the could not give up alcohol.



salad
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30 Apr 2021, 11:47 pm

kitesandtrainsandcats wrote:
Did Christianity spawn violent people or did violent people use Christianity as a tool for their violence?


I would argue Christianity spawned violent and intolerant people in spite of Jesus being the most loving and kind human being on earth along with the Buddha and several other saints. The types of genocides and total annihilation of any and all dissenting beliefs has never ever been precedented in all of world history until Christianity took reign in Europe. Never before in world history did 1 religion exterminate and systematically expunge literally every other rival creed and even rival interpretation of the same creed since Christianity. Islam came close except Islam at least spared Jews and Christians as a useful tax base, hence why for hundreds of years even after the Muslim conquests Jizya tax records still showed that most of the population of the Muslim empires were still predominantly non-Muslim.

If it was simply a matter of violent people using Christianity there would be precedent to other religions in the past having a near and total stranglehold on the European continent and making it impossible to follow any other religion. The fact of the matter throughout most of world history many religions and practices flourishes in the Middle East and Europe, up until Islam and Christianity wiped out most of their rivals, with Christianity going 1 step further and wiping out all opposition whereas the Muslims at least allowed Christians and Jews to exist in exchange for the Jizya tax.

I understand how Islam became so militaristic since most of the verses in the Quran are militaristic, but the New Testament doesnt have a single violent verse to my knowledge and Jesus never ever picked up a weapon, so how did Christianity outdo Islam in violence despite Christianity being the more peaceful religion?


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30 Apr 2021, 11:54 pm

salad wrote:
so how did Christianity outdo Islam in violence despite Christianity being the more peaceful religion?


Christianity was "adopted" by violent expansionist European empires starting with the Romans.



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01 May 2021, 6:15 am

Dear OP, to answer your initial question: it's a proselytising religion - and there are actually remarkably few of those. Most religions are meant to draw a line between an in- and an out-group. Very few are deliberately expanding.
It grew relatively fast and became an empire with the Pope governing from Rome - at that point, it's no longer a religion. It's the story at the bottom of a totalitarian system, which is used to justify it all - at that point, it barely matters what the story is. Both Christianity and Communism are about freeing people from poverty. Christianity and the Nazi Ideology have in common that they tell themselves they are special, that the others are attacking them, that they have to defend themselves and that no one besides their own crowd even counts as people.

And yes, the dark ages were pretty bad. It doesn't look an awful lot like a Christian thing to me, though, meaning, there's nothing in the bible that led to the Vatican creating this medieval nightmare. - it's just imperial power-struggles


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01 May 2021, 6:40 am

shlaifu wrote:
Dear OP, to answer your initial question: it's a proselytising religion - and there are actually remarkably few of those. Most religions are meant to draw a line between an in- and an out-group. Very few are deliberately expanding.
It grew relatively fast and became an empire with the Pope governing from Rome - at that point, it's no longer a religion. It's the story at the bottom of a totalitarian system, which is used to justify it all - at that point, it barely matters what the story is. Both Christianity and Communism are about freeing people from poverty. Christianity and the Nazi Ideology have in common that they tell themselves they are special, that the others are attacking them, that they have to defend themselves and that no one besides their own crowd even counts as people.

And yes, the dark ages were pretty bad. It doesn't look an awful lot like a Christian thing to me, though, meaning, there's nothing in the bible that led to the Vatican creating this medieval nightmare. - it's just imperial power-struggles


Best answer to this perennial question I've seen yet! It makes sense that if you have a civilisation that combines aggressive expansionism with a prosletising religeon*, the religon is going to be selectively ignored, or actively distorted to justify atrocities during conquest and colonisation.

The long civil war in Sri Lanka between Tamils (mainly Muslim) and the Sinhalese majority (mainly Buddhist) has wrought some very un-Buddha-like changes. There are now far-rght Buddhist monks involved in politics. They push an extreme anti-Tamil line and have been known to start fist fights in Parliament.

*Or indeed a prosletising ideology like communism.


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01 May 2021, 7:37 am

Violence is a human condition. Empires rose and fell long before the cross. Christian's just had the chance to commit many atrocities due to technological and numerical advantages they gained as the rulers of the Roman Empire and it's successor states. Christianity after it's adoption by the Roman state was tailored into the latest imperial cult used to justify further attempts at conquest and domination.

Imperial consolidation and conquest is not unique to the Romans or Europe.



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01 May 2021, 2:03 pm

Politics + Religion = Steady work for arms dealers, executioners, undertakers and gravediggers.


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Redd_Kross
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01 May 2021, 2:28 pm

Ghengis Khan? Pol Pot? Idi Amin? Joseph Stalin? Vlad the Impaler?

I think your analysis is rather selective.



salad
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01 May 2021, 3:08 pm

Redd_Kross wrote:
Ghengis Khan? Pol Pot? Idi Amin? Joseph Stalin? Vlad the Impaler?

I think your analysis is rather selective.


Vlad the Impaler was a Christian.

Idi Amin was still a puppet of Britain, a Christian nation.

For all of Genghis Khan's atrocities he at least allowed other religions to flourish and practiced a form of religious tolerance unheard of since the days of Cyrus the Great himself, something Christians failed to do.

Pol Pot and Joseph Stalin were nasty fellows and do put most of history's villains to shame, and im the 1st to admit that the atheist communist dictators of the 20th century were also among history's worst monsters. However here's why I didnt call them out:

Christianity is a religion that by and large supports love and peace. For most of history's worst atrocities to be committed by Christians rings worse than if Atheists did the same because atheists don't adhere to an objective moral paradigm enshrining the sanctity of life and love. Atheism is inherently amoral and thus does not lend itself to objective morals. Christians who believe in objective morals promoting pacifism and love yet going on to commit history's most barbaric atrocities is much more confounding and thus more warranting of greater investigation to resolve such an anomaly.


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01 May 2021, 4:23 pm

Redd_Kross wrote:
Vlad the Impaler?

I think your analysis is rather selective.


You're aware he was Christian, right? :nerdy:


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01 May 2021, 4:27 pm

salad wrote:
Vlad the Impaler was a Christian.

Idi Amin was still a puppet of Britain, a Christian nation.

For all of Genghis Khan's atrocities he at least allowed other religions to flourish and practiced a form of religious tolerance unheard of since the days of Cyrus the Great himself, something Christians failed to do.

Pol Pot and Joseph Stalin were nasty fellows and do put most of history's villains to shame, and im the 1st to admit that the atheist communist dictators of the 20th century were also among history's worst monsters. However here's why I didnt call them out:

Christianity is a religion that by and large supports love and peace. For most of history's worst atrocities to be committed by Christians rings worse than if Atheists did the same because atheists don't adhere to an objective moral paradigm enshrining the sanctity of life and love. Atheism is inherently amoral and thus does not lend itself to objective morals. Christians who believe in objective morals promoting pacifism and love yet going on to commit history's most barbaric atrocities is much more confounding and thus more warranting of greater investigation to resolve such an anomaly.


Vlad the Impaler used religion as a political tool. Idi Amin was bankrolled by a wide number of nations over the years, for political not religious reasons. Also, Britain is not a fundamentally Christian nation (unless you count the "weddings and funerals only" church-goers), and their influence in Amin's affairs died out early in his "career". Hypocrisy isn't usually a sign of devout religious belief. Someone who is paying lip service to a particular religion while simultaneously going against everything it stands for clearly isn't THAT religious.

You could argue the same about the majority of Western Christians who cherish material possessions, compete to put themselves first, do everything they can to avoid helping the poor and the ill, and never "turn the other cheek" in a confrontation. But I daresay the same observations could be applied to members of other religious groups too. Believers (of whatever faith) seem very keen to cherry-pick the teachings that suit them, while ignoring the rest.

Atheism is NOT inherently immoral, because morality exists independently of religion.



salad
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01 May 2021, 5:06 pm

Redd_Kross wrote:
salad wrote:
Vlad the Impaler was a Christian.

Idi Amin was still a puppet of Britain, a Christian nation.

For all of Genghis Khan's atrocities he at least allowed other religions to flourish and practiced a form of religious tolerance unheard of since the days of Cyrus the Great himself, something Christians failed to do.

Pol Pot and Joseph Stalin were nasty fellows and do put most of history's villains to shame, and im the 1st to admit that the atheist communist dictators of the 20th century were also among history's worst monsters. However here's why I didnt call them out:

Christianity is a religion that by and large supports love and peace. For most of history's worst atrocities to be committed by Christians rings worse than if Atheists did the same because atheists don't adhere to an objective moral paradigm enshrining the sanctity of life and love. Atheism is inherently amoral and thus does not lend itself to objective morals. Christians who believe in objective morals promoting pacifism and love yet going on to commit history's most barbaric atrocities is much more confounding and thus more warranting of greater investigation to resolve such an anomaly.


Vlad the Impaler used religion as a political tool. Idi Amin was bankrolled by a wide number of nations over the years, for political not religious reasons. Also, Britain is not a fundamentally Christian nation (unless you count the "weddings and funerals only" church-goers), and their influence in Amin's affairs died out early in his "career". Hypocrisy isn't usually a sign of devout religious belief. Someone who is paying lip service to a particular religion while simultaneously going against everything it stands for clearly isn't THAT religious.

You could argue the same about the majority of Western Christians who cherish material possessions, compete to put themselves first, do everything they can to avoid helping the poor and the ill, and never "turn the other cheek" in a confrontation. But I daresay the same observations could be applied to members of other religious groups too. Believers (of whatever faith) seem very keen to cherry-pick the teachings that suit them, while ignoring the rest.

Atheism is NOT inherently immoral, because morality exists independently of religion.


I never ever said Atheism is Immoral

I said atheism is Amoral

There's a big difference.


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01 May 2021, 5:10 pm

Feyokien wrote:
Imperial consolidation and conquest is not unique to the Romans or Europe.


No but we do it better than anyone else