Friday, October 15, 2010

Monarchy and Monotheism


The Kings of Israel, as well as Saint Constantine the Great, imposed or enforced monotheism as a tool for strengthening their own political power, and/or fortifying the unity of their empires: one God in Heaven, one King on earth; divine unity equals political and imperial unity.


Was the mighty Egyptian empire monotheistic? No. Did the great Chinese and Babylonian empires ever worship one God? No. Did Alexander the Great, who conquered the whole known world, ever bow his knee to a single deity? No. Then...? What gives?

2 comments:

NicholasMyra said...

To the hater's credit, Lvka, Egypt did have one pharaoh who attempted to impose henotheism (pseudo-montheism) on his people after he came to believe that the Aten, the "disc of the sun" was the true god. This pharaoh, who renamed himself Akhen-aten, built a new Egyptian capital in barren wilderness-- the middle of the desert-- after a vision told him that location was to be the center of his new religion.

Starvation, political upheaval and general unrest followed. After his reign ended, the powerful polytheistic cults in cities like Thebes struck his name and image from the historical record. Akhenaten's conversion meant political disaster and damnatio memori for the poor fellow.

maximus said...

Maybe man's desire to consolidate authority(especially on a grand scale) testifies to an innate yet weak perception of the true reality of monotheism.

Rom 1:19-20 Because that which is known of God is manifest among them, for God has shown it to them.
For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things made, both His eternal power and Divinity, so that they are without excuse.

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