Byzantine chant: Lament for Constantinople: Ο Θεός ήλθοσαν έθνη/ “O Lord the heathen are come” | YouTube

Source: Byzantine chant: Lament for Constantinople – Ο Θεός ήλθοσαν έθνη / “O Lord the heathen are come” | YouTube (performed by Alexander Lingas/ Liturgica)

“Fall of Constantinople, (29 May 1453). After ten centuries of wars, defeats, and victories, the Byzantine Empire came to an end when Constantinople fell to the Ottoman Turks in May 1453. The city’s fall sent shock waves throughout Christendom. It is widely quoted as the event that marked the end of the European Middle Ages. Ο Θεός ήλθοσαν έθνη translated as ‘O God, the nations have invaded your inheritance’. Manuel Chrysaphes, the composer of this marvellous historical piece, which has been discovered at the beginning of the first world war, did not find more eloquent words than those of Psalm 78 [Psalm 79] in order to mourn in it the church of Aghia Sophia [Hagia Sophia].”

 

The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise | Intercollegiate Studies Institute

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“The existence of a Muslim kingdom in Medieval Spain where different races and religions lived harmoniously in multicultural tolerance is one of today’s most widespread myths… The problem with this belief is that it is historically unfounded.” – Dr. Darío Fernández-Morera, Ph.D.

Source: The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise – Intercollegiate Studies Institute: Think. Live Free.

“The existence of a Muslim kingdom in Medieval Spain where different races and religions lived harmoniously in multicultural tolerance is one of today’s most widespread myths. University professors teach it. Journalists repeat it. Tourists visiting the Alhambra accept it. It has reached the editorial pages of the Wall Street Journal, which sings the virtues of the ‘pan-confessional humanism’ of Andalusian Spain (July 18, 2003).

“The Economist echoes the belief: ‘Muslim rulers of the past were far more tolerant of people of other faiths than were Catholic ones. For example, al-Andalus’s multi-cultural, multi-religious states ruled by Muslims gave way to a Christian regime that was grossly intolerant even of dissident Christians, and that offered Jews and Muslims a choice only between being forcibly converted and being expelled (or worse).’

“The problem with this belief is that it is historically unfounded, a myth. The fascinating cultural achievements of Islamic Spain cannot obscure the fact that it was never an example of peaceful convivencia.”

I have thought for years – since my undergraduate medieval studies days, in fact – that there was something that did not ring true about the standard narrative of “peaceful, multicultural” Cordoba / Andalusia, where Muslims, Christians, and Jews allegedly lived together in harmony, and the arts and sciences flourished. There were hints of a shadow – such as the admission that non-Muslims had to pay jizya – but it was hard to pin down anything more. There had to be more to the story!

Now, Dr. Darío Fernández-Morera, Ph.D., has written an exhaustively researched and documented book on the subject, of which the linked (and rather lengthy) article is but an abstract, and which makes it abundantly clear that the much-lauded “peaceful coexistence” was enforced by brutal oppression, in which Christians – in their own land! – and Jews were emphatically second-class citizens, subject to the whims of their overlords, and in which the undeniable artistic achievements were financed by heavy taxes and the spoils of conquest.

I would add, also, that the much-vaunted Muslim medical and other arts were based heavily on Classical and late Hellenistic – Greco-Roman – antecedents, texts to which medieval Christians would have had access, had the great libraries of the Mediterranean world not fallen to Islamic conquerors in the 7th and 8th centuries.

And the “intolerance” shown by the Christian successor state in what had been al-Andalus is perhaps somewhat more comprehensible – perhaps even forgivable – in light of the more than seven centuries (722 – 1492 AD) Spanish Christians had spent re-taking the Iberian peninsula from its Muslim overlords. A cautionary tale for today’s West! But I digress:

In dealing with the question of why this myth (in the popular sense of the term, which is to say, fallacy) has been so persistent in both popular and academic culture, Fernández-Morera suggests – accurately, in my opinion – that it “may be that extolling al-Andalus offers the double advantage of surreptitiously favoring multiculturalism and deprecating Christianity, which is one of the foundations of Western civilization,” and continues,

“This mechanism is not unlike that in the mind of those who dislike Western culture intensely, but who with the fall of Communism find themselves without any clear alternative and so grab Islam as a castaway grabs anything that floats. So anyone who dislikes Western culture or Christianity—for any reason, be it religious, political, or cultural—goes on happily pointing out, regardless of the facts, how bad Catholic Spain was when compared to the Muslim paradise.”

A paradise which exists only in the cultural Marxist imagination.

As I say, this is a lengthy essay. It is, nonetheless, worth a read, for the light it casts on a much-misunderstood, and greatly mis-characterized, time and place in history. Read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest!

A generation – and a nation – betrayed

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Oh, Albion! What have you done?

My heart breaks.

“What REALLY Happened Yesterday in Oldham” | Tommy Robinson

Hey, Tommy Tommy! Tommy, Tommy, Tommy, Tommy Robinson!

I cannot guarantee that you’ll be able to see this video. At the least, there will be an “offensive content” screen to click through, and most of its features will be disabled. But at least I was able to view it, and hopefully you will be, too.

Robinson was campaigning for a slot as an MEP – Member of the European Parliament – in this weekend’s elections; sadly, that campaign was not successful.

But whether you like him or not, whether you agree with him or not, this video – showing the local police doing absolutely zilch while armed Islamic thugs, many of them brought in from out-of-town, throw bricks, rocks, bottles, and even scissors at his supporters, including women and children, gathered for a campaign rally – shows all too clearly the situation in Britain at present.

Dear God in heaven, what has happened to “England’s green and pleasant land”…?

 

Hundreds of Christians killed in Nigeria attacks | ABC Action News

 

People react as a truck carries the coffins of people killed by the Fulani herdsmen, in Makurdi, Nigeria January 11, 2018. | (Photo: REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde) Image linked from an article in The Christian Post, as no photograph provided with ABC article. The CP article is also worth a read. This has been going on for a long time.

Source: Hundreds of Christians killed in Nigeria attacks | ABC Action News

I know I said I was going to try to avoid political postings during Lent; but I also said I would make exceptions for exceptional events.

With all the coverage given to the reprehensible attack on mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand last weekend, it was easily lost that the same week had seen attacks killing at least as many Christians in Nigeria, with comparatively little media coverage or attention. What reporting there was came from Christian organizations, although some mainstream media outlets did pick up the stories (albeit “below the fold“).

I am sorry if this sounds cynical or snarky, but how much do you want to bet the current spate of attacks on Christians will be largely ignored by US/Western media – and in particular, that the celebrities, political pundits, and media talking-heads who are quick to claim “Islamophobia” and oppression of Muslims will have little to say about “Christophobia,” and oppression of Christians by Muslims?

Certainly there will be no denunciations, outrage, or calls for re-education of Muslims to make them more tolerant of Christians, as there have been in the other direction. As my dear late mother used to say, “it all depends upon whose ox is getting gored.”

But violent persecution and oppression of Christians is a very real issue, in these times. Even Newsweek, hardly a right-wing rag (!), recounted a January report by a Catholic charity organization, which found that

“The persecution and genocide of Christians across the world is worse today ‘than at any time in history,’ and Western governments are failing to stop it, a report from a Catholic organization said.

“The study by Aid to the Church in Need said the treatment of Christians has worsened substantially in the past two years compared with the two years prior, and has grown more violent than any other period in modern times.”

And Open Doors USA, which publishes a World Watch List of the 50 countries in which it is most difficult to be a Christian, reports that 215 million Christians experience high levels of persecution, a number which represents 1 in 12 Christians worldwide; that during 2018, 3066 Christians were killed, 1252 were abducted, 1020 were raped or sexually harassed, and 793 churches were attacked; and that although the #1 most dangerous country for Christians is atheist, communist North Korea, Islamic oppression fuels Christian persecution in 8 of the top 10 countries.

Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy!

Roman Catholic bishops issue responses to Pope’s joint declaration with Grand Imam

 

 

 

A number of leading Catholic bishops are beginning to respond to the highly controversial joint declaration, the “Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together” which Pope Francis signed with Sheik Ahmad el-Tayeb, Grand Imam of Cairo’s al-Azhar Mosque, during an interreligious meeting in Abu Dhabi on Monday, Feb. 4.

As a current article on LifeSite News points out, the document has incited considerable controversy among Christians for asserting that “the pluralism and the diversity of religions” are “willed by God in His wisdom” – a statement many believe contravenes the Catholic Faith. About the furthest I would be willing to go is that the pluralism and diversity of religions are tolerated by God in His mercy… which is saying quite a different thing.

Now, as I say, a number of bishops are beginning to issue letters of response (and, dare one say it – as a non-Roman Catholic, I do so dare – correction and fraternal reproof) to this document. One of these is Bishop Athanasius Schneider, Auxiliary Bishop of Astana, in Kazakhstan, who has become a notable proponent of Catholic (and more generally, Christian) orthodoxy in these troubled times. Continue reading “Roman Catholic bishops issue responses to Pope’s joint declaration with Grand Imam”

The End of London, Prepare Yourself | Stefan Molyneux

Talk about your “inconvenient truth.”

This is sobering. Saddening. Angering. I loved London, when I was there in 1985 and again in 1990. (I also wanted to visit Paris some day. Not in its current state…) “When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life!” exclaimed Samuel Johnson, in 1777.  What a different 241 years make!

And of course, what is true of London (and other major cities in England, and increasingly throughout the British Isles) is true of many other places in Europe, and could rapidly become true of the United States, too, if those who support the migrant “caravans” – along with “sanctuary cities,” and similar inanities – have their way.

This video is not going to be an easy or popular one to listen to, especially for those who are still sucking at the teat of the dominant “liberal”/progressive narrative. Stefan Molyneux says things that are not going to go down easily, for some. But that does not make them wrong.

Unfortunately, he is all too right.

“Diversity is our strength.”

Bullshit.

Bullshit.

Bullshit.

Sorry, not sorry, for the language.

God damn – and I mean that quite literally, may God Almighty condemn to destruction in this life and perdition in the next – those who, in the name of an insane, twisted obsession with so-called “diversity,” are seeking to destroy the West, and its culture, history, and civilization (including, not incidentally, Christianity and the Judeo-Christian tradition). God damn them to Hell.