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361px-bas_relief_from_arch_of_marcus_aurelius_showing_sacrificeLUMPENPROLETARIAT—It seems those human intellectual efforts being made, for example, in the ancient Mediterranean world, to advance human knowledge of the natural world and human understanding, bodies of information, which were often embedded within Greco-Roman polytheism, became subject to arrested development in the wake of the Constantinian Shift.

Once religious dogma gained dominance in the West, and crept into the state, into schools, and into universities, reason and critical thinking stagnated in society and fell in decline.  Those social virtues, which humans had previously valued in society, such as truth and wisdom, became supplanted by uncritical obedience to church dogma and doctrine with often concurrent uncritical obedience to official state decrees and policies.  Independent pursuits of truth, scientific knowledge, and human understanding were viewed as pagan and criminal in the post-Constantinian world. [1]

In the United States, against the original spirit of the framers of the U.S. Constitution, figures such as James Fifield (Church of Beverly Hills) and Billy Graham worked to erode the separation of church and state in civic life as well as education for the benefit of the ruling classes, the corporate, the financial, and the capitalist owning classes.  What do you think of that?  Do you agree, or disagree?  Why, or why not?

Messina

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[1]  The Constantinian Shift refers to the shift in religious-political authority, which followed from Emperor Constantine the Great, also known as Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantinus Augustus (272-337), and his unification of disparate religious sects and religious institutions into one, complete with the canonisation of the biblical texts, to which modern readers today refer.

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[Image “Marcus Aurelius Sacrificing” by user: MatthiasKabel (own work, CC BY-SA 3.0)]

[28 SEP 2016]

[Last modified 10:31 PDT  29 SEP 2016]

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