Compare, for instance, the responses given by the demon to Luther, with those obtained from the devils by St. The one argues against the. Why art thou so powerful an intercessor for sinners! Before leaving the subject, let us give one or two more instances from the Chronicles of the Lives of the Saints, selected from such narratives as are fully accepted by the Church. We might fill volumes with proofs of undeniable confederacy between the exorcisers and the demons. Their very nature betrays them. Dominick, the founder of the famous order of that name, is one of the mightiest saints on the calendar.
His order was the first that received a solemn confirmation from the Pope, and he is well known in history as the associate and counsellor of the infamous Simon de Montfort, the papal general, whom he helped to butcher the unfortunate Albigenses in and near Toulouse. The story goes that this saint and the Church after him, claim that he received from the Virgin, in propria persona, a rosary, whose virtues produced such stupendous miracles that they throw entirely into the shade those of the apostles, and even of Jesus himself.
A man, says the biographer, an abandoned sinner, was bold enough to doubt the. Seeing the great suffering of the tortured demoniac, St. Dominick forgot the insult and called the devils to account.
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Answer of the Devils. We are 15, Know all ye Christians that Dominick never said one word concerning the rosary that is not most true; and know ye further, that if you do not believe him, great calamities will befall you. Thou art the very man here follow verbose compliments. We do not pretend to give the questions and answers literally, for they occupy twenty-three pages; but the substance is here, as may be seen by any one who cares to read the Golden Legend.
The full description of the hideous bellowings of the demons, their enforced glorification of the saint, and so on, is too long for this chapter. Suffice it to say that as we read the numerous questions offered by Dominick and the answers of the demons, we become fully convinced that they corroborate in every detail the unwarranted assertions and support the interests of the Church.
The narrative is suggestive. The legend graphically describes the battle of the exorcist with the legion from the bottomless pit. The sulphurous flames which burst forth from the nose, mouth, eyes, and ears, of the demoniac; the sudden appearance of over a hun-. While the Devil faithfully supports the Christian exorcist in his orthodox? For, by lying, he acts against his or her interests rather than otherwise, and thereby too often casts foul suspicion on the genuineness of the mediumship. The moral of the parallel we leave to the sagacity of the reader.
In case the exorcised person has swallowed the latter, he must vomit them back; and if they are not in his body, the demon must indicate the proper place where they are to be found; and having found them they must be burned.
But beware to ever resort, in such a case, to magicians, sorcerers, or mediums. You must call to help you but the minister of your Church! And those who disbelieve in magic, can they still hope to share the faith of their own Church? And who can teach them better?
Must we then credit the story that this power was given by Christ to Simon Stylites, the saint who sanctified himself by perching on a pillar stylos sixty feet high, for thirty-six years of his life, without ever descending from it, in order that, among other miracles stated in the Golden Legend, he might cure a dragon of a sore eye?
When St. Francis preached a sermon in the wilderness, the birds assembled from the four cardinal points of the world. They warbled and applauded every sentence; they sang a holy mass in chorus; finally they dispersed to carry the glad tidings all over the universe. Attacked by a ferocious wolf, the saint, who had no other weapon but the sign of the cross which he made upon himself, instead of running away from his rabid assailant, began arguing with the beast.
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Having imparted to him the benefit to be derived from the holy religion, St. Francis never ceased talking until the wolf became as meek as a lamb, and even shed tears of repentance over his past sins. Wonders of zoology! These two anecdotes, chosen at random from among hundreds, if rivalled are not surpassed by the wildest romances of the Pagan thaumaturgists, magicians, and spiritualists! And yet, when Pythagoras is said to have subdued animals, even wild beasts, merely through a power-. Neither the she-bear, nor the eagle, nor yet the bull that Pythagoras is said to have persuaded to give up eating beans, were alleged to have answered with human voices; while St.
When the saint offers him one-half of a poisoned loaf, the raven grows indignant and reproaches him in Latin as though he had just graduated at the Propaganda! If it be objected that the Golden Legend is now but half supported by the Church; and that it is known to have been compiled by the writer from a collection of the lives of the saints, for the most part unauthenticated, we can show that, at least in one instance, the biography is no legendary compilation, but the history of one man, by another one who was his contemporary.
Jortin and Gibbon demonstrated years ago, that the early fathers used to select narratives, wherewith to ornament the lives of their apocryphal saints, from Ovid, Homer, Livy, and even from the unwritten popular legends of Pagan nations. But such is not the case in the above instances. Bernard lived in the twelfth century, and St. Dominick was nearly contemporaneous with the author of the Golden Legend. De Voragine died in , and Dominick, whose exorcisms and life he describes so minutely, instituted his order in the first quarter of the thirteenth century. Moreover, de Voragine was Vicar-General of the Dominicans himself, in the middle of the same century, and therefore described the miracles wrought by his hero and patron but a few years after they were alleged to have happened.
What must we think, in such a case, of a biographer who seriously describes the following: One day, as the blessed saint was occupied in his study, the Devil began pestering him, in the shape of a flea.
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He frisked and jumped about the pages of his book until the harassed saint, unwilling as he was to act unkindly, even toward a devil, felt compelled to punish him by fixing the troublesome devil on the very sentence on which he stopped, by clasping the book. At another time the same devil appeared under the shape of a monkey. He grinned so horribly that Dominick, in order to get rid of him, ordered the devil-monkey to take the candle and hold it for him until he had done reading.
The poor imp did so, and held it until it was consumed to the very end of the wick; and, notwithstanding his pitiful cries for mercy, the saint compelled him to hold it till his fingers were burned to the bones! Church, and the peculiar sanctity attributed to it, is sufficient to show the estimation in which veracity was held by its patrons.
We cannot regard with too much astonishment the pretensions of the Catholic Church in seeking to convert Hindus and Buddhists to Christianity. There may be for him some novelty in his embracing Protestantism; for in that he gains the advantage, at least, of limiting his religious views to their simplest expression. We can scarcely be assured that the morality of the Pagans would be in the least improved were they allowed a free inquiry into the life of say the psalmist-king, the author of those sweet Psalms which are so rapturously repeated by Christians.
The difference between David performing a phallic dance before the holy ark — emblem of the female principle — and a Hindu Vishnavite bearing the same emblem on his forehead, favors the former only in the eyes of those who have studied neither the ancient faith nor their own. It would profit little were we to dwell much upon subjects which have been disposed of in such a masterly way by an anonymous author whose work electrified England and Germany last year; while as regards the particular topic under notice, we cannot do better than recommend the scholarly writings of Dr.
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Albeit one-sided, and in many instances unjust to the ancient heathen, Pagan, and Jewish religions, the facts treated in the Ancient and Pagan Christian Symbolism, are unimpeachable. Neither can we agree with some English critics who charge him with an intent to destroy Christianity. If by Christianity is meant the external religious forms of worship, then he certainly seeks to destroy it, for in his eyes, as well as in those of every truly religious man, who has studied ancient exoteric faiths, and their symbology, Christianity is pure heathenism, and Catholicism, with its fetish-worshipping, is far worse and more pernicious than Hinduism in its most idolatrous aspect.
But while denouncing the exoteric forms and unmasking the symbols, it is not the religion of Christ that the author attacks, but the artificial system of theology. We will allow him to illustrate the position in his own language, and quote from his preface:. In like manner, the regenerated heathendom, which dominates over the followers of Jesus of Nazareth, has risen again and again, after being transfixed.
Still cherished by the many, it is denounced by the few. Amongst other accusers, I raise my voice against the Paganism which exists so extensively in ecclesiastical Christianity, and will do my utmost to expose the imposture. In a vampire story told in Thalaba, by Southey, the resuscitated being takes the form of a dearly-beloved maiden, and the hero is obliged to kill her with his own hand. He does so; but, whilst he strikes the form of the loved one, he feels sure that he slays.
In like manner, when I endeavor to destroy the current heathenism, which has assumed the garb of Christianity, I do not attack real religion.
Few would accuse a workman of malignancy, who cleanses from filth the surface of a noble statue. There may be some who are too nice to touch a nasty subject, yet even they will rejoice when some one else removes the dirt. Such a scavenger is wanted. Oh, no! It is against their next of kin in faith, against their schismatic brothers that they are now intriguing within the walls which sheltered the murderous Borgias.
The larvae of the infanticidal, parricidal, and fratricidal Popes have proved themselves fit counsellors for the Cains of Castelfidardo and Mentana. Better Islam, and the hitherto-hated Crescent over the sepulchre of the Christian god, than the Greek Church established at Constantinople and Jerusalem as the state religion. Like a decrepit and toothless ex-tyrant in exile, the Vatican is eager for any alliance that promises, if not a restoration of its own power, at least the weakening of its rival.
The axe its inquisitors once swung, it now toys. The press of even Catholic France is fairly aroused at this indignity, and openly accuses the Ultramontane portion of the Catholic Church and the Vatican of siding, during the present Eastern struggle, with the Mahometan against the Christian. Lemoinne, the well-known editor of the great liberal Catholic journal, the Debats, was moved to say that the Roman Church felt more sympathy for the Moslem than the schismatic, just as they preferred an infidel to the Protestant.
The two systems are of the same nature, and are united on the common ground of a one and unchangeable theory. The civilized world may yet expect the apparition of the materialized Virgin Mary within the walls of the Vatican. There are two precious missives from her in the archives of the Church. The first purports to be a letter in answer to one addressed to her by Ignatius. Nothing was known of this unblushing fraud till the letters were published at Paris, in By a curious accident it appeared at a time when threatening inquiries began to be made as to the genuineness of the fourth Synoptic.
Who could doubt, after such a confirmation from headquarters! It was written in excellent Latin, and was found in the Cathedral of Messina, together with the image to which it alludes. Its contents run as follows:. I have a long time reflected with pain upon your city, which is exposed to much danger from its contiguity to the fire of Etna, and I have often had words about it with my son, for he was vexed with you because of your guilty neglect of my worship, so that he would not care a pin about my intercession. Now, however, that you have come to your senses, and have happily begun to worship me, he has conferred upon me the right to become your everlasting protectress; but, at the same time, I warn you to mind what you are about, and give me no cause of repenting of my kindness to you.
The prayers and festivals instituted in my honor please me tremendously vehementer , and if you faithfully persevere in these things, and provided you oppose to the utmost of your power, the heretics which now-a-days are spreading through the world, by which both my worship and that of the other saints, male and female, are so endangered, you shall enjoy my perpetual protection.
Dated in Heaven, whilst sitting near the throne of my son, in the month of December, of the th year from his incarnation. The reader should understand that this document is no anti-Catholic forgery. Secretary, and six Canons of the Cathedral Church of Messina, all of whom have signed that attestation with their names, and confirmed it upon oath. A Church must have reached the last stages of degradation, when such sacrilegious trickery as this could be resorted to by its clergy, and accepted with or without question by the people.
There never was nor ever will be a truly philosophical mind, whether of Pagan, heathen, Jew, or Christian, but has followed the same path of thought. Gautama-Buddha is mirrored in the precepts of Christ; Paul and Philo Judaeus are faithful echoes of Plato; and Ammonius Saccas and Plotinus won their immortal fame by combining the teachings of all these grand masters of true philosophy. Not so is it with the interpreters of the Bible. The seed of the Reformation was sown on the day that the second chapter of The Catholic Epistle of James, jostled the eleventh chapter of the Epistle to the Hebrews in the same New Testament.