The contribution of the Holy Inquisition to civilization (no it is not a joke)

This is a re-post of an article of Theodotus blog (translation posted here)

To defend and justify the Holy Inquisition is the exact opposite of Political Correctness (PC). But as I have nothing to do with PC, I am happy to present the real history of this medieval institution. Even the biggest critic of the Holy Inquisition, the American Quaker historian Henry C. Lea (1825 – 1909), was forced to admit that “The aim of the Holy Inquisition was the same as the aim of Civilization.” Indeed, even the most fanatical anti-Catholics, agree that the Holy Inquisition effectively countered the suicidal beliefs of the Cathars (who were against childbirth), the vandalism of the Anabaptists (who believed in destroying all art works), the murderous tendencies of Fra Dolcino, (who wished to kill every sinner), the “Brothers of the Free Spirit” (who wished to remove from public office everyone who was not “enlightened”).

All these victories for sanity were due to the Holy Inquisition. Today, no-one would be crazy enough to believe that God created some just to damn them for eternity. But, that was for centuries, the protestant dogma, and the cause of terrible wars that bled Europe. It is due to the Holy Inquisition, that Spain wasn’t touched by such religious wars.

We should also remember that the famed University of Salamanca (one of the best and oldest in Europe), was created by an Inquisitor, and that the conversation about the rights of American Indians took place under the aegis of the Spanish Holy Inquisition. In this, we could even say that the Holy Inquisition was one of sources of modern day international human rights.

To understand how the Spanish Inquisition developed we have to understand Spanish history. In 1492 that country had just completed its national Reconquista, after eight centuries of occupation of a large part of its territory by the Moors. It thus had two really powerful national minorities in it: one of the biggest Jewish communities in the world as well as the Muslims.


View the rest of this interesting article here.

Original Greek post can be found here.

Author: skakos

Spiros Kakos is a thinker located in Greece. He has been Chief Editor of Harmonia Philosophica since its inception. In the past he has worked as a senior technical advisor for many years. In his free time he develops software solutions and contributes to the open source community. He has also worked as a phD researcher in the Advanced Materials sector related to the PCB industry. He likes reading and writting, not only philosophy but also in general. He believes that science and religion are two sides of the same coin and is profoundly interested in Religion and Science philosophy. His philosophical work is mainly concentrated on an effort to free thinking of "logic" and reconcile all philosophical opinions under the umbrella of the "One" that Parmenides - one of the first thinkers - visualized. The "Harmonia Philosophica" articles program is the tool that will accomplish that. Life's purpose is to be defeated by greater things. And the most important things in life are illogical. We must fight the dogmatic belief in "logic" if we are to stay humans... Credo quia absurdum!

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