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Video: Golden crosses and clothes: where did the Orthodox paraphernalia come from?
2023 Author: Seth Attwood | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-11-26 22:42
There are many who reprimand priests for using luxurious clothes and golden crosses. It's time to figure out whether the crosses are really golden and where did such a strange "tradition" come from in religion, which preaches love for one's neighbor. As boring as it is, but first of all we will have to return to our beloved Romans.
Editorial note: this material does not discuss the issue of faith, but the Christian church as a social institution is an organization. It is strongly recommended that you attend an appropriate religious institution, seminary, or philosophy department to discuss matters of faith.
1. Undeserved stereotype
Firstly, when you look at the shiny cross of the priest, you really get the impression that it is completely made of gold. In the vast majority of cases, this is not the case. As a rule, gold directly in crosses is up to 5% of the total amount of materials used. Those. these are either small gold plates or (most often) - gold plating. Sometimes, in the production of crosses, materials similar to gold are used, only to create an "effect" on others.
Secondly, sometimes you can hear: "Gold is demonic material." This is a finger-drawn statement. The religious texts do not regulate in any way the list of materials from which church attributes should be made, including crosses. Moreover, Christianity treats gold "in no way." Teaching condemns - greed and self-interest, and not the material itself. So you can summarize with a well-known joke: "These little hands are clean!"
2. Comrade Roman political officer
It is enough naive to poke the church into passages in the spirit: "Christ walked barefoot, and you hung yourself with gold." For a person who knows at least something about history, this should generally sound like stupidity. As you know, theory and practice do not always correlate. And the church as an organization is one of the best examples here. The key point is that the church, including the Christian church, has always been an ideological organization. And any organization will accumulate resources in one way or another.
In the Roman Empire, Christianity was adopted as a state religion for a reason. It was a deliberate political and social step, as well as a declaration. A pagan culture with many gods no longer suited the role of state ideology. The transition was carried out primarily to strengthen the sole power of the emperor.
The bottom line was something like this: if we have one God in heaven, then there should be one ruler on earth (preferably chosen by this God). At that time, the Roman Empire occupied a huge area. For many people, the empire literally was the whole world. So the ideological step - one god, one emperor, seemed to the population quite logical and reasonable. And since the Christian emperor of Rome is God's henchman, disobedience to the emperor is disobedience to God.
Why is it said? To the fact that at the time of the adoption of Christianity, the Romans were still pagans in their minds. And they, like ancient people, directly realized that gods or God - must be honored. What's the best way to show your respect? That's right, build a huge and beautiful temple. In addition, Christianity actively preached the idea that the soul will go to heaven. The rich decoration of churches, the use of incense, gold and silver, beautiful painting with paints - all this was done to enhance the effect on parishioners, to create such a “corner of heaven on earth”. An ordinary person, who had never seen anything in his life except a plow or a potter's wheel, found himself in such a place, was literally "hypnotized" and bewitched.
Interesting fact: as vulgar as it may sound, but in the Middle Ages, going to church for an ordinary person is also entertainment. There were no televisions, radios and boarding schools at that time. And here a smart man stands in a cassock, who, as they say, can also read. You can talk to all the neighbors. Condemn publicly the local libertine and alcoholic Timofei Petrovich. Hear interesting Bible stories. And maybe even talk to the priest - he (as an intelligent person) will advise something sensible!
Later, this will also develop the idea that the temples of the Lord are also an attempt to reflect on the earth all the splendor of his power. Which material shines the most? That's right, gold.
3. Correct PR
Separately, it should be added, luxurious temples, which in the time of Rome, in the early Middle Ages, were also a political declaration, they say, we are like that and can spend a lot of money on it. Foreign merchants, ambassadors from distant countries, hostages from yesterday's enemies, brought to Rome - all these people saw rich temples and were delighted.
Interesting fact: pagans in general were quite tolerant of other cultures and religions. For example, there were Egyptian idols and statues in Rome. The Romans treated Christians badly only because, unlike other conquered pagans, they refused to honor the emperor as God.
If the state can spend such resources on the construction of its religious buildings, then it is powerful and rich. And since it is powerful and rich, it means that the gods (or God) favor it - this is a typical (in a good way) model of thought of people of a pagan mentality. In turn, amazed at the greatness of such a country, people will once again think about what kind of policy to pursue in relation to it and whether it is worth doing business with it.
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