"The worst government is the most 'moral'.
One composed of cynics is
tolerant and humane.
When the fanatics are on top
there is no limit to oppression."
H L Mencken
"When money transactions replace gift transactions,
the circle of self shrinks to eventually become the lonely, mercenary domain of
John Calvin. To live is to relinquish the
compulsion to control, the need to
label and number
the world, the quest for reductionistic
certainty, the drive to convert the world into
Calvin, a strict literalist, believed Biblical scripture to be the actual
incorruptible Word of God
which carried absolute authority.
John Calvin was
trained to be a lawyer during the Renaissance in France.
Part of that training
involved the newer humanistic methods of exegesis, which dealt with a text in
the original language directly via historical and grammatical analysis, as
opposed to indirectly via layers of commentators.
John Calvin legal
and exegetical training was important as he
applied these exegetical
methods to the Biblical scripture.
John Calvin systemized the
Protestant interpretation of the scriptures with the publication of The
Institutes of the Christian Religion.
John Calvin self-consciously
imagined biblical narrative literally.
John Calvin taught a corrupt literal
interpretation of scripture.
Calvin taught total depravity
(people are born evil and care
only about themselves) and predestination (some people are destined to hell,
especially those who refute the dogma
of total depravity and
Calvin had a flawed sense of logic.
Man is totally depraved and yet
somehow those totally depraved human beings were able to perfectly document and
accurately describe through Biblical accounts the attributes of
"If there were no one to
punish, then God would be incapable of demonstrating that he was
a mysteriously vindictive God." -
[Theory: Calvin was a
psychopath attempting to engineer
human nature. Calvin would have seen God as mysteriously vindictive simply
because in his left brain
psychopathy he would assume that the law he invented would have the
outcome he desired.]
John Calvin made the claim that only his
interpretation of scripture was to be absolute - with stern retribution for
John Calvin founded the first Protestant
absolutist theocracy in
Calvinist Geneva, the "Protestant Rome," was
a totalitarian police state with
systematic subjugation of an entire populace according to a specific
doctrine - Calvinistic dogma.
1542 The council approves John Calvin's
The ministry was divided into pastors, teachers,
lay (nonreligious) elders, and deacons.
The pastors governed Calvin's
Church, and their permission was required to preach in Geneva.
control public behavior, an elected group
of pastors and elders were given the right to search people's homes; to banish
anyone from the city; to force attendance at weekly sermons; and to ban
Criticism of John
Calvin and other church officials was forbidden, as were
immoral writings and
books about Catholicism.
Punishment for first offenses was usually a
Repeat offenders were banished.
Extreme offenses carried
the death penalty.
John Calvin's theocratic absolutism directly caused the death
fifty-eight people who were executed and seventy-six who were banished in order
to preserve the
moral order of Calvinistic dogma.
"Any sculpture or public art was
forbidden. A special permit was required to print anything for publication. It
was forbidden to write letters abroad, and local mail was all read by a
committee, coming and going. Everyone was encouraged to spy on
everyone else, children on their parents, workers against each other, servants
against their masters." - Rafi Metz*
"Most savagely of all were
punished any offenders whose behavior challenged Calvin's
political and spiritual
infalliblity. A man who had publicly protested against the reformer's
doctrine of predestination was mercilessly flogged at all the crossways of the
city and then expelled. A book printer who, in his cups, had railed at Calvin
was sentenced to have his tongue perforated with a red-hot iron before being
expelled from the city. Jacques Gruet was racked and then executed merely for
having called Calvin a hypocrite." -
Stephan Zweig*, The Right To Heresy
Calvin was instrumental in the burning of Michael Servetus* the physician who
first accurately discribed the circulation of blood.
and John Calvin communicated by letter each trying to convince the other of his
Michael Servetus was
denounced as a heretic by Guillaume Trie,
a rich merchant who had taken refuge in Geneva and friend of John Calvin.
Michael Servetus was convicted of
heresy by the French inquisition but escaped before his execution could be
Michael Servetus shortly thereafter attended a sermon by
John Calvin in Geneva and was arrested.
Michael Servetus was found to
be a heretic and
condemned to be burned alive.
executioners tied Michael Servetus to a chair, lowered him into the flames,
then raised him up, then lowered him into the flames again, and again, and
again, so in all it took half an hour before he died.
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American social mores and values have
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