(BEING CONTINUED FROM 01/07/13)
13. More about the sickness of religion and the falsification of history
After the disappearance of the Roman Empire in 1453 the Four Roman Patriarchs of Constantinople New Rome, Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem continued to oversee this work of the cure within the Ottoman Empire using the monasteries as the training ground for those specializing in this method of cure. Now missing from this foursome was the Roman Papacy of Elder Rome which had been taken over forcefully by the Franco-Latins who transformed it into a Franco-Latin Papacy. These new Franco-Latin proprietors continued to call their Papacy “Roman” in order to trick the West Roman serfs and villains into thinking that the Pope of Rome was still a Roman like themselves. The Franco-Latin struggle to capture the Roman Papacy began in earnest in 983 and reached its climax between 1009 and 1046.[ 49 ]
The Carolingian Franks began their doctrinal career knowing fully only Augustine. But Augustine was a Neo-Platonist before his baptism and remained so the rest of his life. Because of this Franco-Latin Christianity remained Neo-Platonic until Occam and Luther lead sizable portions of Western Europe away from Neo-Platonic metaphysics and mysticism and their monastic supports. What Luther and Occam had done was to liberate whole sections of Franco-Latin Christianity from the metaphysical part of Augustinian paganism. However, Augustine’s pagan understanding of original sin, predestination and revelation were still adhered to.
Charlemagne began his attack on the Roman Papacy by contradicting Pope Hadrian’s I (771-795) support of the Seventh Ecumenical Council of 786/8. This illiterate king condemned this Ecumenical Council at his own Council of Frankfurt in 794 in the very presence of Pope Hadrian’s legates. When the Franks captured the Papacy during 1009-1046, they had rejected not only the Seventh, but also the Eighth Ecumenical Council of 879/80 which had been supported conjointly by Pope John VIII (872-882) of Elder Rome and Patriarch Photius (877-886) of New Rome, as well as the remaining Roman Patriarchates of Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem. This Council was convened to get the Franks to accept the Seventh Ecumenical Council and to convince them to remove their Filioque which they had added to the Roman Creed of the Second Ecumenical Council. Instead the Franks continued to accept as their Eighth Ecumenical that of 869. This Council had been annulled by the common consent of the Roman Emperor and by all Five Roman Patriarchates, i.e. Elder Rome, New Rome, Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem at their Eighth Ecumenical Council of 879/80 already mentioned. The Council of 869 had removed Patriarch Photius as one who had illegally replaced the former Patriarch Ignatius (846-858). In the mean time Photius had been writing humorous attacks on the Frankish addition of the Filioque to the Creed which infuriated the Franks. So it served their interests to create the impression that Photius had been condemned for doctrinal errors in 869 and that he had never been recognized by the Roman Papacy. Of course Pope John VIII fully cooperated with Patriarch Photius during the Eighth Ecumenical Council of 879/80.[ 50 ]
In other words a bunch of illiterate and barbarian Franks began their career in dogma during the reign of Charlemagne (768-814) by being against whatsoever is produced by Roman Emperors, Popes, and Patriarchs. This same Charlemagne even added his Frankish Filioque (which has nothing to do with the West Roman Orthodox Filioque[ 51 ]) to the Creed of the Second Ecumenical Council in order to improve it. In addition he condemned all who disagree as heretics at his Council of Aachen in809. All this has been approved ever since 1009 by all “infallible” Franco-Latin Popes.
To the first Seven Roman Ecumenical Councils the Franco-Latins added the annulled Council of 869 and their own 12 “Ecumenical” Councils. However, their acceptance of the first Seven Roman Ecumenical Councils has been only formal since they continue to distort them within the context of Augustine’s presuppositions. In other words the Franks transformed these Councils from the cure of the sickness of religion into support of the cause of the sickness of religion. They simply transformed them into Augustine’s own Neo-Platonic sickness of religion and therefore into a pagan form of Christian teaching and practice based on metaphysics and mysticism.
14. The cure of the sickness of religion and the Neo-Platonism of Augustine.
The Roman Emperors from Constantine the Great (306-337) to the last Roman Emperor Constantine XII (1449-1453) accepted Christianity as the official cure of the sickness of religion and not as one more form of religion. It was because the prophets of the Old and the New Testament knew by means of their glorification in and byYahweh the cure of this specific disease in the heart that Christianity became the religion of the Roman Empire. This cure had nothing to do with either religious or philosophical speculation. The pinpointing of this sickness and its cure in the heart is also the only key to the union of Christians among themselves and the reason why members of the society practicing this cure accept the Nine Ecumenical Councils of the Roman Empire. These Nine Ecumenical Councils are part of Roman Law. What unites them into one whole is the cure of the sickness of religion by means of the purification and illumination of the heart and glorification of the whole person. Each of the Nine Ecumenical Councils condemned specific heresies of their time exactly because they deviated from this cure by attempting to transform the medical practice of the Church into systems of philosophical and mystical speculations and practices.
However, Peter the Great lead the Russians into believing that there are only seven officially approved Ecumenical Councils. These Roman Councils happen to be the ones that the Franco-Latin Papacy continued to accept in common with the four East Roman Orthodox Patriarchates after the Franks captured the Patriarchate of Rome.[ 52 ]This reduction of the Ecumenical Councils from Nine to Seven had become a first step in the attempted union between the Franco-Latin Papacy and the Roman Emperors of New Rome during the latter part of the 13th to the middle of 15th centuries. Submission to the Franco-Latin Papacy was the price that the Roman Emperor of New Rome was required to pay for Franco-Latin help against the Turks. This union was supposed to have been consummated at the union Council of Ferrara-Florence in 1438-1442. This Council was condemned by the three Roman Patriarchs of Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem at their Council of Jerusalem (1443). These three Roman Patriarchates were within Moslem held territories. Then in 1453 New Rome fell to the Ottoman Turks putting all four Roman Patriarchates within the Moslem world, putting an end to the need for asking for help from the Franco-Latin royalties and nobilities of Western Europe and their Pope. The reality of the matter was that the three Roman Patriarchates of Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem had opted to continue their tradition of the cure of the sickness of religion of the Old and New Testaments and of the Nine Ecumenical Councils and were re-joined in this work by the Patriarchate of New Rome in 1453 after the Ottoman takeover of the capital of the Roman Empire.
Perhaps the most serious among these deviations from the cure in question was that of Augustine. Indeed the Ninth Ecumenical Council condemned the philosophical and mystical speculations of Barlaam the Calabrian not knowing that he was simply repeating the philosophical and mystical speculations of Augustine. Since the rule of Charlemagne (768-814) Augustine had become the heart and core of Frankish theology and spirituality. As the Franks were becoming acquainted with Fathers of the Ecumenical Councils they simply understood them within the context of Augustine’s writings. From the time of Charlemagne’s rule until the beginning of Peter Lombard’s doctrinal career (d. 1160) these Franks knew not one Father of an Ecumenical Council. Peter Lombard introduced St. John of Damascus’ (c. 675-749) summary of the doctrines of the Seven Ecumenical Councils which he and his fellow Franks have been reading through Augustinian lenses since.
Augustine’s doctrine of original sin, and by extension his nonsense about predestination, was condemned at the Council of Orange (529). This means that theMerovingian Franks belonged to the Orthodox Patristic tradition. Augustine’s teaching about revelation by means of creatures which God brings into existence to be seen and heard and then pass back into non-existence when their mission is accomplished was condemned by the Ninth Ecumenical Council of New Rome in 1341. The Fathers of the Council did not know at the time that the source of this nonsense was Augustine.
15. The Final Official History of Rome
An essential part of Franco-Latin distortions has been their falsification of Roman History itself. This was inaugurated by Charlemagne in 794 at the Council of Frankfurt. He then began the centuries old Franco-Latin propaganda that the Romans attached to the Emperor of New Rome Constantinople and his Roman Patriarchies of New Rome, Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem are a bunch of “Greek heretics.” Up until this time the Franks had always called the Empire of Constantinople the Imperial Romanum and its citizens Romani. The very last time that these Franks used these correct titles is witnessed to in Charlemagne’s Libri Carolini where he calls the Empire of New Rome the pagan Imperium Romanum. But this position evidently backfired against him because both enslaved and free West Romans were still praying in their Church services for theImperium Romanum.[ 53 ] So he kept the names Romania and Imperium Romanum for the Papal States only. He evidently believed that in this way these prayers would become efficacious for the Papal States only and baptized the rest of the Roman Empire the “Imperium Grecorum“. Now the Franco-Latin nobility has managed to lead naive historians into the use of terms like “Byzantines” and “Byzantine Empire.” There was never a “Greek” or “Byzantine Empire” nor a “nation of Byzantines.” Only those who dwelt in the new capital of the Roman Empire called themselves “Byzantines” which was the name of the small town which became Constantinople-New Rome in 331 AD.
Dionysius of Halicarnassus came to Rome, learned Latin, and studied Roman sources in order to write his history of Rome. There is a tendency to make him look like one who is looking for proofs that the Romans are Greeks. But Dionysius, however, reports what the Romans themselves say about their origins. It was the Roman Senator and leader Porcius Cato who wrote the classical work on the origins of the Roman people in his book De Origines which is also a history of the Italian cities besides Rome. This book inspired the leaders of the French Revolution into realizing that they are descendants of both the ancient Greeks and Romans. This book is now lost?
The keepers of the Lie of Charlemagne have, of course, serious problems with Dionysius. An example of how they cope with this historian is the introduction to the Loeb Classical Library edition of Dionysius’ Roman Antiquities. Earnest Cary claims that Dionysius “promises to prove that Rome’s founders were in reality Greeks, and Greeks from no mean tribes.” But what E. Cary omits to say here is that Dionysius allows the Roman writers themselves to do the proving for him as follows: “But the most learned of the Roman historians, among whom is Porcius Cato, who compiled with the greatest care the genealogies of the Italian cities, Gaius Sempronius and a great many others, say they (the Aborigines) were Greeks who used to live in Achaia (in Southern Greece) and migrated many generations before the Trojan war.” After at least a thousand years in Italy these “Aborigines no longer knew where exactly in Achaia they came from, to which tribe they belonged and who the leaders of their colonies were.”[ 54 ]
Having in mind the older Roman historians, like P. Cato and G. Sempronius, both Livy and not only Dionysius agree with the tradition handed down to them that the Greek-speaking nation of Latins came into existence when the indigenous Greek-speaking Aborigines[ 55 ] and the Greek-speaking Trojans of Aeneas became one nation. The Aborigines occupied an area of the West Italian coastline South of the Tiber river and the Greek speaking Trojans had landed on the coast of the land of the Aborigines where they finally settled. The Aborigines and the Trojans became one nation. This took place when King Latinus of the “Aborigines” gave his daughter Lavinia in marriage to Aeneas, the leader of the Trojans who migrated to Italy as refugees from the Trojan War. Because of this marriage they called themselves Latins (after Lavinas’ Father Latinus had passed away) and their land Latium. The capital of this united Latin nation was Alba Longa. Some time later the twin Greek-speaking Latin brothers, Romulus and Romus, left Alba Longa and founded Rome. These Latins[ 56 ] and some Sabines,[ 57 ] also a Greek-speaking people, founded Rome and the Roman nation. This is why the kings of Rome were mostly of Latin or Sabine origin except for the Tarquins whose ancestors originated from Corinth.[ 58 ] In time the Romans tried to convince the Latins of Alba Longa to unite with them into one nation to better protect themselves, especially against the Etruscans. The Latins of Alba Longa refused. One of the basic reasons for their refusal was that the Sabines, whose ancestors were Greeks from Lacedaemonia in Southern Greece, were, according to the Latins, no longer pure Greeks. A bit latter King Ancus Marcius of Rome (640-616 BC), defeated the Latins and razed their capital in order to “force” the Latins of Alba Longa to become Romans. The Latins of Alba Longa were settled on the Aventine and were incorporated into the Roman system of the gentis. One of these Latin gens or families of Alba Longa were the ancestors of Julius Caesar. The term gens-gentis comes from the Greek word genos meaning the family or tribe one belongs to. This term gens became the difference between those of Greek origin and the tribes of those not of Greek origin. The gentes were those who belonged to the Patrician families who made up the Roman Senate. Eventually all Romans became members of Tribes, but only those of Greek origin remained members of tribes or families called gens and gentes. This is the origin of our word “gentleman.”
We return to the author of the above introduction to Dionysius’ “Roman Antiquities”. He literally accuses Dionysius of adding material to his history from his imagination. According to him Dionysius invents many speeches where no speech is called for. In comparison Livy, who reports many of the same historical events has no speeches for the same occasions. Not taking seriously the claim of the Romans themselves that they are Greeks the author does not take Dionysius seriously when he writes that he worked with the Roman chronicles annalists. So therefore all Dionysius had to do is to copy the Greek texts of speeches from the chronicles and annalists and put them directly into his history. Livy wrote his history in Latin. He would have had to translate all these many Greek speeches into Latin.
At the time that Dionysius went to Rome in about 8 BC he of course had to study the spoken Roman dialect of what was still a Greek language, although more mixed than usual with non Greek words and with a pronounced Roman accent. This also means that the chronicles and annalists were still in a more archaic form more easily readable to Dionysius than to Livy. About this still Greek language Dionysius writes, “The language pronounced by the Romans is neither utterly foreign, nor perfectly Greek, but a mixture, as it were, of which the greater part is Aeolic (Greek) and the only pleasure they (the Romans) enjoy, when they intermingle with various nations, is that they do not always pronounce their sounds properly. But among all colonists they preserve all indications of their Greek origin.”[ 59 ]
16. Linguistic indications of the Greek background of the Latins, Romans and Sabines.
Apart from the description which the Romans make about themselves, there are also linguistic indications which clearly point to the Greek reality of the ancient Latins, Romans and Sabines.
The claim that the name Rome e.g. is simply a place name, which may derive even from the Etruscans, is sheer nonsense. The name “Rome” in Greek means “power,” ” force,” “fighting army” and “speed tactics.”[ 60 ] The name “Rome” derives from two the Greek verbs: 1) roomai which means “to move with speed or violence, to dart, rush, rush on, esp. of warriors.”[ 61 ] The name “Rome” also derives from of the Greek passive verb: 2) ronnymi which means “to strengthen, make strong and mighty” and “to put forth strength, have strength or might.[ 62 ] The closest Latin equivalent verb is ruo, which is connected to the Greek verb reo meaning “to flow, run, to hasten.” Of all the uses of this verb both active and passive there is none that even comes close to meaning “rome” in Greek.
Romans, Latins and Sabines were agreed that the name quiris (sing.) quiretes (pl.) would be their common name which dictionaries translate as citizen, but the Romans had a name for citizens, like the Greeks, polites, i.e. civitas. But the names quiris-quiretes derive from the Greek name kouros (sing.) kouretes which means young men of fighting age and therefore warriors, “young men, esp. young warriors,” Iliad 19. 193, 248.[ 63 ] So the Romans, Latins and Sabines called themselves first “Warriors” and later citizens.
Because all three groups of Romans, Latins and Sabines came to Italy by sea from Greece and Asia minor they were warrior sailors and sea faring peoples. It is obviously for this reason that at their weddings they shouted the Greek word Thalassios, sailor, at the groom and not the Latin name marinos.
Of the seven hills of Rome the Quirinal, the hill of Mars, was originally that of the Sabines. It was from here that the Roman warriors of Romulus stole their wives from. Quiris was not only the Sabine name for a spear, but also for their god of war. They called their god of war “The Warrior” in their Greek language and later Mars.
In the Roman tradition Romulus did not die, but ascended deified to heaven without leaving behind his body since he was or became the Quirinus, a or one of the god(s) of war.
These are some of the contexts within which the Romans thought and spoke about themselves. No historian has the right to change this. Now whether this version of Roman history is correct or not is entirely another matter. But it remains a fact, however, that the Romans themselves, the Latins themselves and the Sabines themselves believed and wanted to believe that they are Greeks. Not only this, the united Roman nation of Romans, Latins and Sabines, spoke their own common Greek Language.
Now some scholars may search for sources which may prove otherwise, i.e. for some reason the Romans who were not really Greeks came to believe that they are Greeks. So what? That would be like proving that a black American is not an American because he is black.
Each Roman gens sometimes was composed of several thousand Romans each one headed by a Patrician member of the senate. The members of gentis memorized their laws from childhood and kept their laws a secret among themselves.[ 64 ] A form of an Italian language was that of their slaves and dependents which also evolved into the Latin dialect mixed with Greek. It was these non Greek speaking dependents of Rome who finally forced the Romans to reduce the laws to written form. It was because of the violent protests of their Italian dependents that the Romans produced a text of laws in primitive Latin in about 450 BC. The problem was serious because these dependents did not know the laws by which they were being punished by Roman magistrates. Faced with the revolt of these dependents the senate sent a delegation to Athens to search for a solution to the problem. The result was a set of 10 texts on bronze tables which finally became the “The Code of Twelve Tables.” Table 11 forbade the marriage between members of the gentes and the rest of the population of Rome, in other words between those of Greek origin and those of non-Greek origin.
The origin of this problem was that for centuries the members of Greek colonies were being assimilated by the barbarians among whom they lived. This was solved by the position that the gentes had to remain a pure race so that the offerings of their priests to their gods may be heard and that the auspices be taken correctly and correct answers received from the gods when making decisions on legal, social and especially military matters. “The tribune of the Plebs, Gaius Canuleis, proposed a bill regarding the intermarriage of patricians and plebians which the patricians looked upon as involving the debasement of their blood and the subversion of the principles inhering in thegentes, or families and a suggestion, cautiously put forward at first by the tribunes, that it should be lawful for one of the consuls to be chosen from the plebs, was afterwards carried so far that nine tribunes proposed a bill giving the people power to choose consuls as they might see fit from either the plebs or the patriciansàWhat tremendous schemes had Gaius Canuleis set on foot! He was aiming to contaminate the gentis and throw the auspices, both public and private into confusion, that nothing might be pure, nothing unpolluted; so that, when all distinctions had been obliterated, no man might recognize either himself or his kindred. For what else, they asked, was the object of promiscuous marriages, if not that plebeians and patricians might mingle together almost like the beasts?”[ 65 ]
That the debate was not about the rights between rich and poor is shown by the following joke told by Gaius Canuleis in the same speech, “Why, pray, do you not introduce a law that there shall be no intermarrying of rich and poor”?
(TO BE CONTINUED)
by ©John S. Romanides
[ 49 ] John S. Romanides, “Franks, Romans, Feudalism and Doctrine, an interplay between Theology and Society,” Holy Cross Orthodox Press 1981, pp. 25 ff.
[ 50 ] For an example of the original position of the Franks on this subject see F. Cayre, Manual of Patrology and History of Theology, Translated by H. Howitt, Paris, Tournai, Rome 1940, vol 2, pp. 378-380. For a much fairer but not exactly correct position see Francis Dvornik, “The Photian Schism,” Cambridge University Press 1948.
[ 51 ] See the chapter “The Filioque” in my “Franks, Romans, Feudalism and Doctrine,” pp. 60-98.
[ 56 ] Dionysius of Halicarnassus, Roman Antiquities, III, 1-6. Mettius Fufetius, the chief of the Latins, who were resisting the pressure of King Tullus Hostilius of Rome (672-640) to become one Greek nation with the Romans argued as follows, “As for us, Tullus, we deserve to rule over even all the rest of Italy, inasmuch as we are a Greek and the largest of all that inhabit this country.” Another argument: “One cannot point to any race of mankind, except Greeks and Latins, to whom we have granted citizenship; whereas you have corrupted the purity of your body politic by admitting Tyrrhenians, Sabines, and some others — and that in great numbers too, so that the true born element among you that went out from our midst become small, or a tiny fraction, in comparison with those who have been brought in and are of an alien race. And if we should yield the command to you, the base-born will rule over the true-born, barbarians over Greeks, and immigrants over the native-born.”
[ 57 ] ‘Plutarch’s Lives’ XVI, 1. “The Sabines were a numerous and warlike people, and dwelt in unwalled villages, thinking that it behooved them since they were Lacedaemonian colonists, to be bold and fearless.”