Wundervölker, Monstrosität und Hässlichkeit im Mittelalter (German Edition)

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It was accepted in the last century with undoubting faith as an axiom, and the most astonishing conclusions were built upon it, as some divines draw the. Hence the plcsiKure of verse, because it throws difficulties in the way of imitating speech. Milton is, in this rcsj oct, p:reater than Yirgil, says the sapient Titic, for whereas the Roman poet imitated llomiT directly, the English one has the gloiy not only of imitating him directly, but also of imitjiting him at second or even at third hand, through Virgil and othera.

I do not give these illustrations of the theory of imitation as proofs of its fallacy. It would fare ill with most doctrines if they were to be j'udged by the manner in which the imwary have applied them. It was a good thing of which the critics could not have How it. But it died hard, and held its ground so lustily, that, even in our own time, critics whom we should not reckon as belonging to the school of the Renaissance, but to the more original schools of Germany, have given their adhesion to it.

Music, for example, is not imitative. When Haydn stole the melody to which he set the eighth commandment, the force of musical imitation could no further go. As music is not imitative, so neither is narration. Words represent or stand for, but cannot be said to hiniiti of imitate ideas. Thus the foundation of critical science is laid in a definition which is not the peculiar property of art. He declared that the principle of imitation lies at the root not merely of the fine arts, but also of thought itself.

In a word, it is not peculiar to art, and is incapable of supplying the defini- tion of it. For in truth, although imitation bulks so large in Aristotle's definition of poetry, it sinks into insignificance, and even passes out of sight, in the body of his work. Notvrith- Btanding Richter's, notwithstanding Coleridge's adliesion to it, the theory of imitation is now utterly exploded. The Aristotelian theory ruled absolute in literature for two millenniums. No other theory was put forward to take its place, as TheoUicr thc fouiidatiou of critical science, till within wStii.

There came a time, how- ever, when the need of a deeper criticism began to be felt. The old criticism that through the Renaissance traced a descent from Aristotle, dealt chiefly with the forms of art. A new criticism. It is always an idea. As all nature's thousand changes But one changeless God proclaim. So in art's wide kingdom ranges One sole meaning still the same. In the meantimfe it may be enough to point out that whereas innumerable attempts have been made to analyze the grand idea of art which is generally supposed to be the idea of the beautiful, and out of this analysis to trace the laws and the development of arty it cannot be said that in following such a Kne.

It is for this very reason that the theory of the beautiful, as the common theme of art, subsists. If it were less vague, it would be more oppoeed. With all its vagueness, however, two facts may be discovered which are fatal to it as a founda-. Two faitH tion for the science of criticism. The first is the more fatal, namely, that it does not cover the whole ground of art.

The worship and manifes- tation of the beautiful is not, for example, the province of comedy, and comedy is as much a part of art as tragedy. Moreover, on the other hand the second fact I have referred to , is it to be supposed that to display beauty is to produce II work of art? La belle chme qile la philosophie 1 sjivs M.

Horace, long ago, in a verse wliich lias become proverbial, expressed the truth about the position of beauty in art. TiiataiiiM Convinced that the idea of the beautiful is. Music is an art, but in what sense are we to say that its theme is eternal truth, or that Mendels- sohn's concerto in D minor is a reflex of the ab- solute idea? In what sense are the arabesques of the Alhambra eternal truths or reflections of the eternal essence?

The idea of the true is not the theme of all art, and it is not peculiar to works of art to take the true for a theme. Still the same objections apply to yet another defini- tion of the artistic theme. Ideas of power, ideas of truth, ideas of beauty — it will not do to bind art as a whole, or poetry as a part of it, to the.

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If the unity of the arts does not lie in the possession either of a common method which they pursue, or of a common theme which they set forth, wherein does it consist? Even if poetry and the arts could boast of a common method and a common theme, still every question of method and the choice of tlieme must be subordinate to the end in view.

The end determines the means, and must there- fore be the principal point of inquiry. If, then, we inquire what is the end of poetry and the poeticiil arts, we shall find among critics of all countries and all ages a singular unanimity of opinion — a unanimity which is all the more remarkable, when we discover that, admitting tlie fact with scarcely a dissentient voice, they have never turned it to account — they have.

It is admitted that the im- chapter mediate end of art is to give pleasure. The dreamer and the thinker, the singer and the sayer, at war on many another point, are here at one. Here, however, care must be taken that the some expia- reader is not misled by a word. There is in pleasure so little of conscious thought, and in pain so much, that it is natural for all who pride them- selves on the possession of thought to make light of pleasure. It is possible, however, in magnifying the worth of conscious thought, to underrate the worth of unconscious life.

We cannot say that it is ignorance, because tliat is a pure negation. But there is no objection to our saying — life ignorant of itself, unconscious life, pleasure. I do not give this explanation as sufficient — it is very insufficient — but as indicating a point of view from which it will be seen that the establisliment of pleasure as the end of art may involve larger issues, and convey a larger meaning than is commonly sup- see Chapter poscd. What that larger meaning is may in due course lie shown. In the ninth chapter of this work I attempt to state it, and stating it to give a remodelled definition of art.

In the mean- time, one fiiils to see how, bv anv of the new- fangled expressions of German philosophy, we. But if this be granted, and it is all but univer- sally granted, it entails the inevitable inference that criticism is the science of the laws andTheneoes- conditions under which pleasure is produced.

Criticism, however, is built anywhere but upon the rock. Instead of taking a straight line, like the venerable ass which was praised by the Eleatic philosopher, they went off zigzag, to right, to left, in every One and aii. So they bounced off to the left. So they bounced off to the right. Why does not the critic take the one plain path before him, proceeding instantly to inquire into the nature of pleasure, its laws, its conditions, its requirements, its causes, its effects, its whole history? Whenever I have insisted with my friends on this point, as to the necessity of recog- nising criticism as the science of pleasure, the invariable rejoinder has been that there is no use in attempting such a science, because the nature of pleasure eludes our scrutiny, and there is no accounting for tastes.

But the rejoinder is irre- levant. Chemistry was at one time a diCBcult study, and seemed to be a useless one. If art be the minister, criticism must be the science of pleasure, is so obvious a truth, that since in the history of literature and art the inference has never been drawn except once in a faint way, to be mentioned by and by , a doubt may arise in some minds as to the extent to which the production of pleasure has been admitted in criticism as the first principle of art.

I proceed, accordingly, to take a rapid survey of the chief schools of criticism that have ruled in the repuUic of letters, with express reference to their opinion of pleasure and the end of art. Speaking ronndly, there are but two "f great systems of criticism. But these divided systems may be subdivided, and perhaps the plainest method of arranging the critical opinions of paist ages is to take them by countries. It will be convenient to glance in succession at the critical schools of Greece,ltaly, Spain, France, Germany, and England. And from this survey,.

In our old Anglo-Saxon poetry, the harp is de- scribed as " the wood of pleasure," and that is the universal conception of art. Homer, Plato, and Aristotle are the leaders of Greek thought, and their word may be taken for what constitutes the Greek idea of the end of poetry. The uppermost thought in Homer's mind, when he speaks of Phemius and Demo- docus, is that their duty is to delight, to charm, to soothe.

When the strain of the bard makes Ulysses weep, it is hushed, because its object is defeak'd, and it is desired that all should rejoice togotlier. Wherever the minstrel is referred to, his chief business is described in the Greek verb to delight. What the great poet of Greece thus indicated, the great philosophers expressed in logical fonn. That pleasure is the end of poetry, is the pervading idea of Aristotle's treatise on the subject. To Plato's view I have already more than once referred. He excluded the poets from his republic for tin's, as a cliief reason, that poetry has pleasure for its leading aim.

In another of his works he defines the pleasure, which poetry aims at, to be that which a man of virtue. The argument is, that because pleasure is a be- coming — that is, a state not of being, but of going to be — it is unbecoming. He starts with the Cyrenaic definition of pleasure as a state not of being, but of change, and he argues that the gods are unchangeable, therefore not capable of pleasure.

Pleasure which is a becoming, is imbecoming to their nature; and man seeking pleasure seeks that which is unseemly and un- godlike. Think of this argument what we will, the very fact of its being urged against poetry in this way, brings into a very strong light the conviction of Plato as to the meaning of classical art. And what was Plato's, what was Aristotle's view of the object of art, we find consistently maintained in Greek literature while it pre- served any vitality.

Is it a tme or a faJ. But is it tnie? Is the pleasure which it affords, the pleasure of a truth or that of a lie? The question naturally arose from their critical jx int of view, which led them to look for tlie definition of art in its form. They defined art as an imitation, which is hut a nar- rower name for fiction. It will he found, indeed, tliroughout the history of criticism, that so long as it started from the Greek point of view, followed tlu?

Greek metliod, and accepted the Greek definition of art, that this question as to the truth of fiction was a constant trouble. And when th? Greek raised liis doubt as to the truth of art, let it be rememl ered that he had in his mind something very different from what we should now be thinking of were we to question the truthfulness of this or that particular work of art.

A work of art may be perfectly true in our sense of the word, that is to say, drawn to. The first suggestion of the Greek doubt, as to Treatment the reahty of the foundation of pleasure in art, question. It is said that when Thespis came to Athens with his strolling stage, and drew great crowds to his plays, Solon, then an old man, asked him if he was not ashamed to tell so many lies before the people, and striking his staff on the groimd, growled out that if lies are allowed to enter into a nation's pleasures, they will, ere long, enter into its business.

Gorgias said that tragedy is a cheat, in which he who does the cheat is more honest than he who does it not, and he who accepts the cheat is wiser than he who refuses it. Many of the Greeks accepted the cheat so simply that, for example, they accused Euripides of impiety for putting impiety into the mouth of one of his dramatic personages. And not a few of their painters undertook to How the cheat with the utmost frankness.

Apelles had to deceive. Zeuxis suffered a grievous disappointment when, having painted. CHAPTER a boy carrying grapes, the birds came to peck at —1 the fruit but were not alarmed at the apparition of the boy. There are other stories of the same kind, as that of the painted curtain, and yet again that of the sculptor Pygmalion, who became enamoured of the feminine statue chiselled by himself.

Life is wanting to enable them to show their fury. I might quote whole pages from Vasari to show how an artist and a critic of the Cinque Cento thought of art. He says tliat one of. He says that the instru- ments, in a picture of St. Cecilia, lie scattered around her, and do not seem to be painted, but to be the real objects. He says of Raphael's pictures generally that they are scarcely to be called pictures, but rather the reality, for the flesh trembles, the breathing is visible, the pulses beat, and life is in its utmost force through all his works.

In Italian art also it may be. Many another picture might be mentioned in which a similar treatment is adopted, and especially by the painters before Raphael, as Dominic Ghirlan- dajo, and men of that stamp. But everybody knows the crowning work of Raphael, and that, therefore, may serve best for an illustration.

What are we to make of the two Dominicans? If, instead of the two bald-pated, black-robed monks, the artist had placed on the Mount of Transfiguration a couple of wild bulls feeding or fighting, they would puzzle one less than his two monks.. Why is their monastic garb in- truded among the majestic foldings of celestial. And yet Raphael introduces on the scene two modem monks to share the vision! Not only is the Gospel narrative thus violated; there is a still stranger anomaly. The three disciples are lying down, blinded with the light and bewildered in their minds.

The Dominicans are kneeling up- right and looking on. Raphael has deliberately introduced into his picture — the spectator. More than one generation has passed away, and there the figures in the picture have remained unchanged. The Italians, when, on the canvas of Ghirlandajo, they looked on the well-known figures of Ginevra di Benci and her maidens, as attendants in an interview between Elizabeth and the Virgin Mary, found themselves projected into the picture and made a part of it.

The most marked characteristic of the Greek drama is the presence of the chorus. The chorus are always present, — watching events, talking to the actors, talking to the audience, talking to themselves, — all through the play, indeed, pour- ing forth a continual stream of musical chatter. And what are the chorus? The only intelligible explanation which has been given is that they represent the spectator. What the Greeks thus did artistically on their stage, we moderns have also sometimes done inartistically and unintentionally, but still to the same effect.

We have had the audience seated on the stage, and sometimes, in the most. Dublin to the Cordelia of Mrs. Woffington, an Irish gentleman who was present actually ad- vanced, put his arm round the lady's waist, and thus held her while she replied to the reproaches of the old king. The stage in the last century was sometimes so beset with the audience, that Juliet has been seen, says Tate Wilkinson, lying all solitary in the tomb of the Capulets with a couple of hundred of the audience about her.

We should now contemplate such a practice with horror, as utterly destructive of stage illusion; and yet we must remember that it had its illusive aspect also, by confounding the dream that appeared on the stage with the familiar reaUties of life. From all this, however, it follows that if the Greeks made a confusion between fact and fiction, art and nature, they were not peculiar What is in so doing. What is peculiar to them is this, thVcrieks. It was fairly rea- soned. The Greeks were the first to raise this subject of the truth of art into an important critical question which they transmitted to after times.

This is not the place to enter into a dis- chapter cussion whether they were right or wrong, — 1 and whether fiction be or be not falsehood, manner of That discussion will be more fitly handled when "riSiy we come to examine the ethics of art. Plato, as I have already said, exhausted his dialectical skill in showing the untruthfulness of art.

He con- demned it as an imitation at third hand. Plato's statement as to the truth of art is thus grounded on his theory of ideas, and when that theory goes, one would imagine that the statement should go also. It is incredible that mankind should find enduring pleasure in a lie. There cannot. AVe should now express the same thing in the statement that whereas history is fact, poetry is truth. Aristotle does not set him- self formally to answer Plato, but throughout his writings we find him solving Plato's riddles, imdoing Plato's arguments, and rebutting Plato's objections.

Many of his most famous say- ings are got by recoil from Plato. Thus his masterly definition of tragedy, which has never been improved upon, and which generation after generation of critics have been content to repeat like a text of Scripture, is a rebound from Plato. And the same is to be said very nearly of Aris-. It was reserved for Aristotle to put the defence of art on the right ground — to deny that it is a cheat at all — and to claim for it a truthfulness deeper than that of history.

This, then, is one of the earliest lessons which The lesson the student of art has to learn. The first lesson criticism. He rather prided himself on his anatomy of thought and expression, but he hardly ever made a clean dissection. Mark what he says in this case. He says that the true opposite of poetry is not prose, but science.

This is not right. Coleridge has defined science by reference to the external object with which it is engaged; but he has defined poetry by reference to the mental state which it produces. There is no comparison between the two. If he is to run the contrast fairly, he ought to deal with both alike, and to state cither what is the outward object pursued by each, or what is tlie inward state produced by each. The true whilc that of poctry is pleasure. To say that tlic object of art is pleasure in contrast to know- ledge, is quite different from saying that it is pleasure in contrast to tiiith.

By thus getting rid of the contrast between truth and pleasure, which Coleridge has unguardedly allowed, a difficulty. His statement has an air of extra- ordinary precision about it that might wile the imwary into a ditch. All his precision goes to misrepresent the pure Greek doctrine. From Greece we pass over into Italy, as The Italian the stepping-stone to modern Europe; and itaiudsm. Everybody wiU remember how Horace describes a poem as fashioned for pleasure, and failing thereof, as a thing of nought, that belies itself, like music that jars on the ear, like a scent that is noisome, like Sardinian honey bitter with the taste of poppy.

Next to Scaliger stands another Italian critic, Castelvetro, who wrote a commentary on. He, too, saw in enjoyment the end of poetry, and maintained the doctrine so uncompromisingly, that some of the French critics long afterwards took him to task for it. Tasso was more distinctly a modem, and has left us, with his poems, a number of critical discourses. In these he states unflinch- ingly that delight is the immediate end of poetry, and the whole of the Italian school of criticism goes with him. The doctrine is firmly stated in Yida's famous poem, whiit is It is less interesting, however, to know that.

Here we come tp another great lesson. If the first of all lessons in art is that art is for pleasure, and the second is that this pleasure has nothing to do with falsehood, the third is that art is not to be considered as in any sense opposed to utility. Scaliger describes the Italians of. In the Latin language, indeed, the verb to please or delight signifies at the same time to help or be of use, and the two ideas became inseparable in all criticism traced back to Rome. Castelvetro leant more to the Greek view, and put all thought of profit as connected with art How tmsu.

The strain of criticism thus originated flows through all modern literature that owns to Italian influr ence. In one fonn or another, we come upon it in Spanish, in French, in German writers; and we find it very rife in England during those Elizabethan days when our literature was most open to Italian teaching. Deep at the root of them lies the conviction which takes possession of every thoughtful mind, tliat nothing in this world exists for itself, can in the long run be an end to itself, can have an ultimate end in its Wherein it owu good plcasurc.

In pursuing this line of thought, however, a man soon finds that he is apt to argue in a circle — such a circle as one of our subtlest poets suggests in saying —. And thus the laureate sings —. Again, there is a core of truth in the Horatian How far m maxim that art should be profitable as well as pleasing, since it always holds that wisdom's ways are ways of pleasantness, that enduring pleasure comes only out of healthful action, and that amuse- ment as mere amusement is in its own place good, if it be but innocent.

There is profit in art as there is gain in godliness, and poKcy in an honest life. But we are not to pursue art for profit, nor god- liness for gain, nor honesty because it is poHtic, There are minds, however, so constituted that nothing seems to be profitable to them, except it comes in the form either of knowledge or of. Divines opposed to dancing, from Saint Ambrose to the Rev.

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John Northbrooke, have yet had much to say in fiivour of what they call spiritual dancing, such. These are, of course, vanities on which it is needless to comment. Nor need we waste time on those who apply to art the utilitarian test. The inhabitants of Yarmouth in begged that Parliament would grant them the lead and other materials " of that vast and alto- gether useless cathedral in Norwich" towards the building of a workhouse and the repairing of their piers, Thomas Heywood, who has been described as a sort of prose Shakespeare, gave a rather prosaic proof of the utility of the drama from the effect produced by a play acted on the coast of Cornwall.

The Spaniards were landing "at a place called Perin," with intent to take the town, when hearing the drums and trumpets of a battle on the stage, they took fright and fled to their boats. Ruskin has here, in fact, touched on one of the most curious laws of pleasure. It will be found that when we begin to talk of pleasure, at once we fall into seeming inconsistencies and contradictions.

It is only by a concession to the exigencies of language that we can speak of pleasure as obtained from any conscious seeking. Not to forestall what has to be said of pleasure in the proper place, it may be enough here to illustrate the present diffi- culty about it by quoting what Lord Chester- field says of wit. Ruskin says, you will fail of joy. And yet, after his kind, with what may be called an under-conscious- ness, the man of wij intends wit, the man of art intends pleasure, and both attain their ends. Why is dehght expressed except for delight? There is not only no objection to saying that art is the ex- pression of delight, but also the statement of that fact is essential to the true conception of art.

It is, however, an advance upon the Italian doctrine of pleasure, which will more properly be handled in the sequel, when in the course of travel we come to Germany. The spwiJi III. A Spanish Jew of the fifteenth century, even if he were a converted one, is not the sort of person whom one would select as the type of joyousness, and the expounder of the gay art.

He mingles this view, it is true, with some stiff notions, as that the poet who can produce so much pleasure must be high-bom, and must be inspired of God, but his idea throughout is, that the art is for pleasure. Other Spanish critics follow in the same track, as Luzan, who, however, takes most of his ideas on criticism from the Italians. The Spaniards raised another question, which is more purely a critical one. Art is for pleasure, but whose pleasure? Not that this question had been wholly overlooked by the Italians.

On the con- trary, some of the French critics, that in the days of the Fronde and of the Grand Monarch buzzed about the Hotel Rambouillet, were wild and witliering in the sarcasms which they poured on the poor old Italian, Castelvetro, for venturing to assert that poetry is to delight and solace the That art is multitudc. But tlic Spaniards, having a noble i! It will be well worth, as I think, a cup of good wine.

They complain that the tales of chivalry, intended to give pleasure, have an evil effect in minis- tering to bad taste. But the canon, who has no mean opinion of the approbation of the few as opposed to the many, tells us distinctly that the corruption of Spanish art, which, he laments, is not to be attributed to the bad taste of the com- mon people, who delight in the meaner pleasures. Lope de Lope de Vega, however, was still bolder than Cervantes. Tales have the same rules with dramas, the purpose of whose authors is to content and please the public, though the.

He has been well backed, however, both by comic and serious writers. Will you have it that the public are astray, and are not fit to judge of their own pleasure? There is a diflBcult question here involved. It a diflScoit is indeed the first difficult question that meets here in- the critic. Tasso played with it a little. It was left for the French critics to sound the abysses of such an inference, and to turn it to account as a.

Lope de Vega says, Please the multitude even if vou defy the rules. An oppoHite Tlic vicw tlius sct fortli invites misapprehen- wipiKtted sion, but it has not a little to say for itself. If the effect of Milton's plirase were simply to soothe the feelings of the disappointed poets who write what nobody will read, it would be a pity to deprive them of such comfort; but the fact is, that poets of rare ability often in our.

Great poetry was ever meant, and to the end of time must be adapted, not to the curious student, but for the multitude who read while they run — for the crowd in the street, for the boards of huge theatres, and for the choirs of vast cathedrals, for an army march- ing tumultuous to the battle, and for an assembled. It — 1 is intended for a great audience, not for indi- vidual readers. SiSn- " tion of printing have wrought some changes. Few English critics have been more fastidious than Johnson, and yet wliat was his opinion as to the pleasure which Shakespeare created?

When his fancy is once on the wing, let him not stop at cor-. Exprcned that all gTcat art is gregarious. The great that all artist IS never as one crying solitary in the. He is surrounded by Paladins, that with him make the age illustrious. He belongs to his time, and his time produces many, who if not great as he, are yet like him. Nothing is more marked in history than the phenomenon of seasons of excellence and ages of renown. Witness the eras of Pericles, Augustus, the Medici, Elizabeth, and others. What means this clustering, this companionship of art, un-- less that essentially the inspiration which pro- duces it is not individual but general, is common to the country and to the time, is a national possession?

And how again can this be if the pleasure of art is not in the people, and the standard by which it is to be judged is not in their hearts? In one word, the pleasure of art is a popular pleasure. TheFnnch lY. There is another side of the question to which justice must be done before we can have this tlieory of poetic pleasure well balanced. What the Spanish critics want in tliis respect, the French critics supply. The French, like other scliools of criticism, had their own special.

Those who made any doubt about it, as Father Rapin, did so chiefly on the score of religion, which in their eyes made light of all earthly pleasure. Eapin allows delight to be the end of poetry, but he will not hear of it as the chief end, because by that phrase he xmderstands — the public weal which all human arts ought to look to as their highest work. It is scarcely needful to say that here is but a mistake of terms. Father Rapin is thinking of ultimate ends, whereas those who dwell on pleasure as the chief end of art, have no thought but of its immediate object.

The strongest statement of what that object is, I have already given from one of Molifere's plays. If French critics did not commonly advance the doctrine of pleasure with like fearlessness of logic, still they accepted it Accepu the freely. In the tempest of discussion which rose dwtHM. La Harpe and other critics of his school made it their chief accusation against Shakespeare that he sacrificed to the rabble. Certainly the French poets could not be charged with this fault. They showed so little regard. It has nothing that can stand a comparison with the ballads of Spain, with those of England and Scotland, with the pol- ished strains that are familiar to every Italian beggar, with the folksongs of Germany.

It is in a state of savage revolt against Hugo's re- the ancient priggishness of French criticism that u! For me, he says, I admire all, be it beauty or blur, like a very brute, and it seems to. R me that our age — he ought to have added our nation — needed sueli an example of barbaric enthusiasm and utter childishness. He published the earliest work of systematic criti- cism of the new school, a book called La Poetique, which is very scarce, and which, from a phrase of Bayle's, it would seem that even in his time it was difficult to get.

Scudery's state- ment of the precious doctrine of pleasure will be found in the preface to that grand epic bug — his poem of Alaric. But La Mesnardiere was l cfore him, and stated the case in the more formal manner of a systematic treatise. It has been already intimated that La Mesnardiere is one of those who insist very much on the uses of art, and.

He runs foul of Castelvetro for suggest- ing the contrary, and heaps terms of contempt on the rude, the low, the ignorant, the stupid mob — a many-headed monster, whom it is a farce to think of pleasing with the delicacies of art. No, he says, it is kings, and lords, and fine ladies, and philosophers, and men of learning that the artist is to please. Who but princes can get a lesson from the story of kings?

What is Clytemnestra to the vulgar herd? Tragedy is of no good but to great souls — great by birth, by office, or by education. Art in a word is only for the Precious few, — for fine ladies and gentlemen, for those who, whether literally or metaphorically, may be said to wear the blue riband. After we have reached the point of critical analysis which the Spanish dramatists came to when they propounded a doctrine in art, the equivalent of that in politics which Bentham made so much of — the necessity of studying the greatest pleasure. If pleasure is an enviable thing, it is also very envious — envious even of itself, and lives by comparison.

Pleasure varies — it differs in different men, and in the same men at different On varieties timcs. Notwithstanding this diversity, which is well known, men are ever bent on finding something that will act as a sort of thermometer or joy-measure; and so the Spartan ruler de- creed that no harp should have more than seven strings, the French critics cried aloud for a proper observance of the three unities, and purists in architecture stood out for the five orders.

What is to be said in presence of such a fact as Tasso encountered in his critical analysis — that the romances of Ariosto gave more pleasure to his countrymen than the epics of Homer and Virgil? Is Ariosto, there- Aiui crituai forc, tlio greater artist? Your highly educated persons — your true blues — might be able to appreciate the classics, to get the full quantity of pleasure from them — a pleasure which need not shun comparison or competition with the pleasure. The former kindle no pleasure at all, or but a few faint sparks; the latter give a great blaze of pleasure. And it therefore appears that if art is to be measured by the amount of enjoyment thus evolved in rude minds, all our most approved critical judgments would be upset.

He was easily able to satisfy himself, but had he pushed his inquiries further he would have found the same diflSculty confronting him in another shape. In that shape the diflficulty has so staggered another Frenchman, M. He argues that if pleasure be the end of art, then the more or less of pleasure which an art affords should be the standard of its value, and that in such a case music with its ravishing strains should, in spite of its vagueness, stand at the head of the arts.

But this, according to Cousin, lands us in an absurdity that reflects upon the soundness of the principle from which we set out. Now the chief thing to be noted here is that the standard of pleasure is within us, and' that therefore it varies, to some extent, with the circumstances of each individual. We can never measure it exactly as we can heat with a ther- mometer. Sometimes a man feels cold when the thermometer tells him it is a warm day, and sometimes a man derives little pleasure from a work of art which throws all his friends into rapture. There is no escaping from these vari- ations of critical judgment, whatever standard of comparison we apply to art.

It is impossible to measure art by the foot-rule, to weigh it in a balance with the pound troy, or to deal it forth in gallons. But though the results of art are not reducible to number, and there is no known method of judgment by which we can arrive at perfect accuracy and unanimity, still there is a sort of rough judgment formed, which is as trust- worthy as our common judgments on the tem- perature of the air. Nor is there any need of gieater accuracy. We should gain nothing by being able to say that this artist is so many inches taller than that, or that one art gives so many more gallons of pleasure than another.

La Mcsnardierc comes in here with. These two questions are identical in substance, though there may be some difficulty in granting But an ob- to M. Herbert Spencer, de- clares, at the end of an elaborate essay devoted to prove it, that music must take rank as the highest of the fine arts — as the one which, more than any other, ministers to human welfare. After these testimonies, there may be some difficulty, I say, in granting to M. Cousin his facts. For the sake of argument, however, let it be granted that music, as the least expressive, is the lowest form of art.

How are we to recon- cile this supposition with the fact that it gives. AMwer to Ouc might Tcply to the argument of M. Tlius, if the end of art is opinion pleasure, the end of science is knowledge. That, ISrnce!. Cousin's regard, and considering the grandeur of its ambition, many thoughtful men will be inclined to concede its claim to the honour. Undoubtedly, therefore, it must be the clearest, the best, and the most certain of the sciences.

Is it so? Is it not well- nigh the direct opposite of this? In that sense, is there no absurdity in speaking of knowledge as the end of science, when the grandest of all tlie sciences gives us the least certain knowledge? Pursuing the line of argument of which M. And so if we are to make comparisons between art and art a thing in itself as useless as it would be to run comparisons between science and science , we have it in our power to say that the intensity of the pleasure produced by an art is not always the standard of its value.

The prolongation of intense enjoyment is sometimes a positive pain, and to procure a lasting pleasure, we must de- scend to a lower level. To use the language of geometry, pleasure has two dimensions, length as well as height. The sum of enjoyment is not to be measured by the height alone of its transports. It is impossible to adjust exactly the comparison which M.

Sir Joshua Reynolds, for one, was quite. Hitherto I have made the case turn on the comparison sug- gested by Tasso, between the pleasure which Homer or Virgil awakens, and that which Ariosto stirs in the breast of an Italian. But as that comparison is complicated by the fact of Homer writing in a language foreign to the Italian, let us change the illustration. Let us take Milton, who has been said to equal both Homer and Virgil combined. There is a cele- brated sentence of Johnson's, that much as we admire the Paradise Losty when we lay it down we forget to take it up again.

We prefer the pleasure of a novel. Is the novel, therefore, a more successful work of art? Or take the ques- tion as put by La Mesnardiere. The great mass of the people like nothing so well as bufiEboneries. What can they know of the true pleasure of art who stoop to the lower pleasures of farce and frivolity? In the pleasure of the palate chabteb there is a good example. Does he therefore say that a barley bannock and milk is the most enjoyable food?

It gave him. We learn thus instinctively to separate our estimate of what is pleasurable from the choice which the accidents of time, place, or health impose upon us. The man who, stretched upon a knoll with his gun by his side, calls for a drauerht of bitter beer W tiie pannier tiiat carries the luncheon, knows right well that though this be the beve- rage which for the moment he prefers, there are Hquids beyond it in taste. There is no- thing to puile one in this, and neither is there any real puzzle in the case of a man who takes up a novel in preference to a great epic. The deliberate selection of the lower form of pleasure does not interfere with our estimate of the higher.

Application The bearing of these facts must be obvious. The case is precisely parallel to that of tlie man who, in tlie midst of his shooting, asks for bitter beer when he might be drink- ing, if he cliose, the finest Chateau Margaux. It cannot be said that his taste is depraved, neither can it be said that the superiority of rare claret over beer is not meted, even in his mind who quaffs the beer, by a standard of The ideal plcasure.

It is a commonplace of moralists that man never is, but always to be blest. He has an ideal bliss before him, of which sometimes even his highest actual joys seem to fall shoi-t. And what say the Germans? If any The German school of criticism is likely to disown the doctrine ciitidsm. The earliest luminaries of German criticism, Lessing and Winckelmann, most distinctly accept the doctrine.

The confession of Lessing's faith will be found in his treatise on the Laocoon. There he describes pleasure as the aim of art, though he adds that beauty is its highest aim. Winckelmann, in like manner, in the forefront of his work, places on record the statement that art, like poetry, may be regarded as a daughter of pleasure. Kant, at a later period, promulgated the self-same doctrine, and Schiller developed it into his theory of the Spieltrieb or play-impulse.

In every condition of man, said Schiller, it is play, and only play, that makes him complete. Putting aside minor differences, however, one can detect something like a common thought running through all German speculation on this subject. Hitherto, we have seen that in the various schools of criticism, art came to be de- fined as something done perhaps imitated, per- haps created for pleasure. The German schools advanced upon this notion so far as to make out that art not only goes to pleasure, but also comes.

That art of it. How embodied, whether in imitation, or in a creation, or in a mimic creation, is a different question, that no doubt, as in the system of Schelling, from which our own Cole- ridge borrowed largely, occupies a most impor-. Thus it is a great point with Schelling that art is a human imitation of the creative energy of nature— of the world soul — of God.

But this is only another mode of saying that it is the ex- ercise of a godlike power, therefore of a free power, which cannot be conceived as under com- pulsion, and subsists only as play or pleasure. Art, I repeat, is, in the German view, the free play or pleasure of the mind, embodied for pleasure. Wolf went to work in a right summary fashion. Philosophy, high and dry, had not then thought much of the human heart, and rather despised the fine arts.

Baum- garten wrote an apology for deeming them worthy of his notice. On the other hand, beauty is the power which anything possesses of yield-. There was a reason and a defence of the mistake so long as with Wolf and Baumgarten the pleasurable and the beautiful were co-ordinate terms — that is to say, when everything pleasing was to be defined as beauti- ful, and everything beautiful as pleasing.

It was. Nothing is more curious than to see how, in Schiller especially, the rapturous, inter- Their. After every sober bit of argument, he breaks into inarticulate rhapsody, which we can only interpret as the fol-de-diddle-dido, fol-de-diddle-dol at the end of a song. But other Germans also are more or less so bewitched, and some of them so besotted with beauty, that with scarcely an exception they fall down and worship it as the be-all and end- all of art. Baumgarten, Lessing, Winckelmann, Kant, Schiller, Schelling, Hegel, and the Schle- gels, all treat of art as the empire of the beauti- ful, and of the beautiful as the one article of -Esthetic.

It was reserved for Richter to rebuke They are them, and call them back to reason. Though Wolf, at tlie fountain-head, led the German school of criticism into error by identi- fying all pleasure, and therefore the pleasure whicli art seeks with the sense of beauty, the consideration which was thus given to the nature of the beautiful led directly to what I have described as tlie German contribution to the doctrine that pleasure is the end of art.

What is beauty? Now, here again, the German answer to that question trails back to Wolf. Beauty, said the philosopher, arguing out the case after the manner of mathematicians in a regular sequence of propositions and demonstra- tions, with attendant corollaries and scholia, —. A perfect toad is beautiful; a perfect monster. You cannot define beauty fiirther, because you cannot define perfection; but you can vary the terms of your definition.

Accord- How soc- ingly upon the terms of the definition all manner thinkera of changes were rung. Ah, said Hegel, we must unite the two views of perfect expression and perfect character, and then we shall arrive at the conclusion that the beautiful is the perfect expression of the perfect idea— my grand idea of the absolute, in which contraries are at one, and the all is nothing.

So, in turn, other philosophers saw in art the mani- festation of the beautiful, and in the beautifiil the perfect expression of their pet ideas. In this connection one might take up the view of Novalis, that the poet is a miniature of the world, a view which would. CHAiTER satisfy the philosophers who look to find in art — 1 the expression of their highest generalisations. If poetry expresses the poet, and the poet is a miniature of the world, why then art is the expression of their world-ideas.

Happily, how- ever, we need not trouble ourselves to throw Goethe's gops to the philosopliers. It is enough to state of the what is Goctlie's final view of the beautiful in in itft," art Art, in his view, is an embodiment of beauty, and the beautiful is a perfect expression of nature, but chiefly the poet's or artist's nature — either of his whole mind, or of a passing mood. But Initween the lines of this definition we are to see the liandwritiug of Schiller interposing his remark on the grandeur of the play-impulse in man — that man is only perfect when his mind is in free play, moving of itself, and its move- ment is a play or pleasure.

All that has been put forth by nie, said Goethe, consists of frag- ments of a great confession. But art, said Winckelmann, is the daughter of pleasure. Art, said Kant, is play. Art, re-echoed Schiller, is the expression or product of the impulse to Ana mm- play. Ruskin, that art is the. The statement so far, however, is incomplete, TheGerman and needs for its proper balance a counterstate- needs to be ment of the sorrows of art. Through the sense of pain art has reached some of its highest triumphs, and Christian art has in it so deep a moaning as to make Augustus Schlegel say, that whereas the poetry of the ancients was the poetry of enjoyment, that of the moderns is the expression of desire.

It is quite clear that there is more of pain in modern than in ancient poetry, just as there is more of a penitential spirit in the Christian than in the Olympian faith. But will the Christian, with all his sadness, admit that he has no enjoyment? Does he not luxuriate in his melancholy? Will he not smile through his tears, and say that he has attained a higher happiness than the Greek, with all his lightheartedness, could even con- ceive?

In these things we are apt to play with words. We say that our religion is the religion of sorrow; but what do we mean? Do we mean that the Greeks had pleasure in their religion, and that we have none in ours? Not so; the Christian maintains that his is the higher joy, and that it is not the less joy because. And people do not all at once see how to recon- cile such a statement with that other of Shelley's, already quoted, that poetry is the record of the best and happiest moments of the best and hap- piest minds. Those who cherish the luxury of woe, of course will not admit this.

It is a pleasure. If the art of the Greeks be more distinctly joyous than that of any other people, it is to the Germans we owe the more distinct elucida- tion of the fact that the sense of joy underlies all art. Elizabethan period is not of much importance, chapter and perhaps it is enough if I further quote from — 1 Webbe's treatise on English poetry. All our best criticism, how- ever, dates from the time of Dryden, and in his But our. It is the primary one in poetry. Towards the end of last century English a new spirit criticism began to breathe a new spirit. On the contrary, they Zl saw more clearly, and declared more stoutly than ever, that the end of art is pleasure.

I thus refer to him out of his proper place, because he is the only critic known to me who draws the inference upon which I have insisted, that if poetry be the art, criticism must be the science of pleasure, though he cannot be said to have fully under- stood, or to have carried out his own doctrine. And Lord " Tlic fiiic arts," said Lord Kames, " are intended.

It is not with his inference, however, chapter that we are now concerned, but with the grand — L fact which stands out to view, that in all the critical systems poetry is regarded as meant for pleasure, as founded on it, and as in a manner the embodiment of all our happiness — past, present, and to come. Not that other schools have ignored this doctrine. It is the chief weapon, the ever- lasting watchword, the universal solvent, the all in all. Our great philosopher arranged all.

History, science, and poetry were severally the products of memory, reason, and imagination. There was something very neat in this arrangement, which D'Alem- bert afterwards adopted, when, in the preface to the celebrated French Encyclopaidia, he attempted to make a complete map of liberal study. Bacon himself, too, had some little doubt as to the perfect wisdom of his arrangement. Saving that this Janus of imagination hath differing faces: for the face towards rea- son hath the print of truth, but the face towards action hath the print of good; which neverthe- less are faces,.

And again, in all persuasions that are wrought by eloquence, and other impressions of like nature, which do paint and disguise the true appearance of things, the chief recommendation unto reason is from the imagination. Never- theless, because I find not any science that doth properly or fitly pertain to the imagination, I see no cause to alter the former division. For as for poesy, it is rather a pleasure or play of ima- gination, than a work or duty thereof.

Ruskin came to the conclusion that " poetry is the suggestion by the imagination of noble grounds for the noble emotions. To imagination belongs the crea- tive fiat of art. It furnishes the key to all criti- cal difficulties — it possesses the wondrous stone that works all the marvels of poetical transmuta- tion. On the threshold of every inquiry, it starts up, a strange and unaccount- able presence, that frights thought from its pro- priety, and upsets all reason. I propose, there- fore, to devote the next few chapters to a fresh and thorough-going analysis of it, which ought to yield some good results.

In the meantime, it. In accepting imagination as the fountain of art, we accept art also as essentially a joy, for ima- gination is the great faculty of human joyance. It is the food of our desires even more than the imagination things themselves which we desire. Of course largely we cannot live upon dreams. By thinking of the frosty Caucasus? Or clog the hungry edge of appetite By bare imagination of a feast? Or wallow naked in December's snow, By thinking on fantastic summer's heat?

But when he adds that, "the apprehension of the good gives but the greater feeKng to the worse," his experience is not that of a man gifted with strong imagination. The power of dream- ing is proverbial as a magic that brings far things near — that transports us whither we will, and that turns all things to pleasure.

Call it. Is any feast so good as that which we imagine? Is any landscape so glorious as that whicli we see in the mind's eye? Is any music so lovely as that which floats in dreams? Is the pleasure which Alnaschar could derive from the possession of unbounded wealth to be compared with that which he feels when in the fancied possession of wealth he kicks over his basket of wares?

Not only is the bare imagination of pleasure thus often beyond the pleasure itself — that of real pain is in many cases a source of enjoyment. It is not seldom a pleasure to remember past suf- fering. That there are nightmares, however, and aches of imagination, does not obliterate the general fact that imagination is the house of pleasure, and that dreamland is essentially a land of bliss. Ruskin, to confess that they are a mystery inscrutable, or like Coleridge, to throw down their pens with a sigh, not because the mystery is inscrut- able, but because their explanations would be unintelligible to a stiflF-necked and thick- headed generation of beef-eating, shop-keeping Britons.

If we are told that poetry must be imaginative, we are also told that imagination must be poetical — for there is an imagination which is not poetical. Few things, however, are more re- markable in the world than the faculty which the human mind has of seizing, enforcing, and brooding over ideas which it but dimly compre-. Rightly understood, also, there is no soniething critical doctriuc to be compared for importance.

Let me add, though at the present stage of the discussion I. The English and the Germans, nearly allied in race, are so far also allied in their thinking, that the views of art upon which they mainly insist are virtually the same. The German expression of these views is the more precise. Weswegen vertrauen sie nicht einfach der Gerechtigkeit ihres Gottes?

Der Hohenstauferkaiser Friedrich II. Viele Christen wissen nur zu gut, was sie wollen. Die anderen wissen vergleichsweise nichts. Nur meinesgleichen soll ich lieben? Nicht die Sonne? Verdiente er, was Christen ihm antaten? Dieser mitleiderregende Gott ist selbst geschaffen als ein Wesen, das die Seinen liebt, vorausgesetzt, sie gehorchen ihm. Sich ausgerechnet von Untertanen geliebt zu wissen? Seine Freude am Unterwerfen als Entsprechung zum Despotentum der Epoche gedeutet zu sehen, die ihn schuf?

Wer hat den Mut, von seinem Gott Liebesgesten zu fordern, die einmal von der bourgeois-patriarchalen Regel abweichen? Die Tugenden dieses Christengottes blieben, wie sie Patriarchen wollten. Ob daher die Menschheit nach dem Untergang dieser Religion besser sein wird, kann nicht gesagt werden. Die Lebenshoffnung der vielen, die nicht konsequent denken wollen? Und die unteren Chargen, das Bodenpersonal?

Nach welchen objektiven Kriterien der Vernunft oder der Moral darf die Haltung von Kleinklerikern beurteilt werden? Ahnen sie manches, wissen sie vieles oder alles, handeln aber nicht, so sind sie nicht redlich. Und noch weiter unten? Das soziale Denkverbot. Der Wille, zu vernichten. Nur Gehorsam schafft Sohnes- und Vaterliebe.

Ja, wir sind befreit, weil andere unter dem Einsatz ihres Lebens Folter und Scheiterhaufen beseitigten! Von einem solchen Gott kommt keine Freiheit. Er braucht Opfer. Dies gilt nicht allein in bezug auf die Millionen Menschen, die Christen in der Vergangenheit folterten und ermordeten. Ich weigere mich noch immer, dies bei allen Christen anzunehmen. Sie vertuschen nicht nur, sie wiegeln nicht nur ab, sie bleiben reuelos. Wir waren und sind im Auftrag seiner Offenbarung am Werk. Er ist ganz unser. Auch sie, die von Abraham, seinem Sohn und seinem Gott handelt, entstammt der patriarchalen Geisteswelt.

Frauen kommen erst gar nicht vor. Wer oder was verpflichtet uns eigentlich, der hergebrachten Exegese zu folgen? Verletzen nicht jene Exegeten unsere Empfindungen, die nach zweitausend Jahren noch immer veritable Mordtaten legitimieren? Keine Chance. Offensichtlich lernt auch ein Gott hinzu, wenn auch, nach heutigem Erkenntnisstand der Menschen, relativ wenig. Denn nach dem Bilde Gottes hat er den Menschen gemacht. Wie es weiterging? Doch auf die Dauer erschien die Zuneigung etwas einseitig. War Gott wirklich das einzige, was dem aufgestiegenen Hirten am Herz lag? Oder gab es einen Konkurrenten im Kampf um Abrahams Herz?

Sich die greuliche Zumutung verbeten? Sein Gewissen ins Spiel gebracht? Das Recht des Kindes auf Leben verteidigt? Den Mordbefehl als solchen erkannt? Sich schleunigst einen menschlicheren Gott gesucht? Isaak, der Stammhalter, liegt bereits gebunden auf dem Opfertisch.

Investor Relations

Diesen Widder — es handelt sich wieder nur um ein Tier — schlachtet Abraham anstelle seines Sohnes. Er selbst soll der Stammvater eines Geschlechts werden, das zahlreich ist wie die Sterne des Himmels und der Sand am Meer, und seine Nachkommen werden Sieger in den Schlachten ihres Gottes sein. Sie werden sich danach zu richten wissen. Damit erscheint der vollendete Tatbestand des Befehlsverbrechens zweitrangig. Es wird nicht lange dauern, bis der Himmel nicht einmal mehr einen Ersatz bereitstellt.

Die Messer der Christen treffen fortan keine Widder mehr, sondern Mitmenschen. Grausamkeit hier wie dort. Mit Gehorsam hatten sie immer zu tun. Das schaffte Befriedigung; sie war nicht von Dauer. Die Lust, die Gewalt hienieden schafft, ist offenbar dauerhafter als die Hoffnung mancher auf ein Jenseits. Auf letztere kann nachweislich verzichtet werden. Im Falle der Gewalt ist ein Verzicht schwerer. Von der Gewalt kann er das nicht behaupten.

Nichts Besonderes, dieser Gott des Abendlandes. Der Gott der Bibel macht kaum eine Ausnahme. Das blieb nicht verborgen. Nichts Besonderes in der Sache, reines Patriarchat, zur Offenbarung hochgelobt. Er liebt trotz gegenteiliger Beteuerungen allein uns. Weil nur wir Leistung erbringen. Weil wir auf seine Belohnung hoffen.

Sie sind schlicht perfide. Warum auch nicht? Und heute will es wieder einmal keiner von uns gewesen sein Doch scheinen sie sich nicht um derlei zu scheren. Sie haben mittlerweile Gott fest im Griff. Doch der Rest war althergebracht. Sie wollen den Menschen ihre Macht beweisen, sind grausam und habgierig zugleich.

Man rechnet dabei ziemlich menschlich und ist nicht zimperlich: Je wertvoller das Opfer, desto gewisser der Erfolg. Man zog ihnen die Haut ab, welche die Priester dann selbst anlegten.


In den Beispielen ging es darum, eine gute Ernte zu sichern. Zum einen erscheint Blut in patriarchalen Gesellschaften als das der Helden, das in Kriegen, Duellen und anderen Mutproben vergossen wird, um patriarchale Werte wie Ehre, Nation, Religion zu sichern. Sein kostbares Blut, von dessen Verehrung noch zu sprechen sein wird, soll ewiges Leben garantieren.

Ihr eigenes Blut bleibt vergleichsweise uninteressant es kann, wie die Geschichte des Christenbundes bezeugt, jederzeit vergossen werden. Patriarchen finden die Schuld an ihrem Zustand so gut wie nie bei sich selbst. Sie schauen in eine andere Richtung. Auf diejenigen, die ihnen - Versuchung seit Anbeginn - angst machen. Und wieder bietet das Neue Testament eine Wegweisung. Wein, Unzucht, Macht, Trunkenheit, Hure. Wenn diese Vokabeln und Bilder nicht ziehen! Jetzt ist die Gefahr personalisiert, der offenbar alle Herren der Welt und alle Menschen erlagen. Weg damit! Hirne, Herzen, Hoden geheilt!

Weg mit dem Weib! Weg mit seiner, unser aller Unzucht! Jubel der Sieger Ap 19,1 ff. Jubel, Heil, Sieg, Amen, Halleluja. Jetzt kann die Hochzeit des Lammes gefeiert werden. Denn mit der Hochzeit des Lammes will es nicht so recht vorangehen. Augenzeugen fehlten, und Wunschglaube setzte sich durch. Die Tradition der Gewalt ist gerade hier noch immer nie gebrochen. Radierung von Jan Luyken, In Bethlehem keine Mauer ohne Stacheldrahtbesatz, ohne Dornenkrone. Vor der Polizeistation wachen Soldaten mit Maschinenpistolen.

Der Friseur nebenan nennt seinen Salon Holy Land. Daher steht in Bet-El eine Kaserne. Sie ist immer wieder Ziel von Autobomben. Das Leben einer Kunstfigur Gewalt der Gegenwart? Gewalt am denkbar falschen Platz? Andere behaupten, es habe eine solche Kluft nie gegeben. Sie sei eine Imagination der Zweifelnden, ein Trauma der Kirchengegner. So bleibt sie fromm, unpolitisch, gesellschaftsunkritisch. Die Predigt ist interessengelenkt.

Das ist ihr Recht. Spricht aber alles gegen die Widerstandstheorie? Doch passen sie noch heute gut auf die Christenheit, obgleich kaum ein Kleriker sie auf seinesgleichen beziehen wird. Das christliche Feindbild ist ja bereits ausgemacht. Nicht eines seiner Worte wurde direkt aufgezeichnet. Bei keinem von ihnen handelt es sich um einen der gleichnamigen Apostel.

Sie ist von Gewalttat umgeben und predigt selbst Gewalt. Was dieser Lukas zu berichten hat? Praktizierende Juden sind schlicht ein Greuel vor Gott Lk 16, Da sprach er zu ihnen: Euch ist das Geheimnis vom Reich Gottes gegeben. Diese Reden schlagen menschlichem Empfinden ins Gesicht; sie sind nur mit Hilfe einer inhumanen Deutung zu retten. Das Evangelium macht keine Ausnahme. Die neue Religion hebt sich nicht von ihren Vorgaben ab. Auf wen, wenn nicht auf diese, wollte und konnte sich Hitler berufen?

Jetzt ist der Graben zwischen Christen und Juden aufgerissen, und Christen, nicht Juden, waren es, die ihn gruben. Jetzt wird nur noch auf die Gegner eingeschlagen. Die Kirchengeschichte wird es beweisen. Welches Feuer mochte er meinen? Ein reales? Ein geistiges? Wer auf die Kirche schaut, kann mit Fug und Recht sagen: Das eine ja, das andere nein!

Ich kam nicht, Frieden zu bringen, sondern das Schwert. Ich kam, den Sohn mit seinem Vater zu entzweien, die Tochter mit der Mutter, die Schwiegertochter mit der Schwiegermutter. Gemeint sind zum einen die drei Tage, die der Prophet biblisches Seemannsgarn! Die Komposition erscheint ziemlich gewagt.

Noch schlimmer: Nicht nur einzelne sind angeklagt. Da sich in den kai serlichen Archiven des vierten Jahrhunderts kein Hinweis auf die Passion eines Jesus fand, wurde einer unterschoben. Die Passion hat sich nicht so ereignet, wie die Bibel sie schildert. Hier schrieben keine neutralen Zeugen, sondern Bekenner, die auf eine eigene Wahrheit ausgerichtet waren.

An ihr entscheiden sich Heil und Unheil Mt 12, Sagt er nein, bleiben ihm Verdammnis und ewiges Feuer Mk 16, Damit ist sie, unter dem Vorwand einer friedlich heilschaffenden Absicht, aggressiv gehalten. Am Dienstag werde ich an eine Egge gebunden und mit Steinen beschwert. Seine Kinder sollen zu Waisen werden und seine Frau zur Witwe.

Niemand sei da, der ihm die Gunst bewahrt, keiner, der sich der Waisenkinder erbarmt! Aus dem einen werden daher die vielen, die Judasse, die Juden. Judas, der Ewige Jude, der Prototyp der Treulosigkeit. Folter wie Mord an solchen sind gerechtfertigt. Aber der Erbe wird umgebracht. Und noch immer kein Glaube bei den Juden an diesen Messias? Es bedarf noch immer keiner Bekehrung. Warum hatte es ausgerechnet das Kreuz zu sein, das den Sohn Gottes ereilte?

Kreuze waren wahrscheinlich auch nicht so hoch, wie sie von den meisten Golgothaszenen der Kunst her bekannt sind. Auch die Entsorgung fiel leichter. Wichtig sind nur ein paar Hauptlinien. Der evangelische Theologe G. Ihm werden viele folgen. Bald stimmt auch der Verfasser des Evangeliums nach Johannes ein. Dieses durchaus nachzuvollziehende Verlassensein ist Lukas suspekt, Johannes kein Wort mehr wert.

Darum her mit der Schere! Dazwischen eine Lehre nach der anderen, eine Kirche nach der anderen, ein Kreuzzug nach dem anderen, eine Inquisition nach der anderen. Alles im Namen Jesu. Daher ist keine noch so progressive Theologie imstande, die ekelerregende Blutfreude der christlichen Bibel und Tradition wegzudiskutieren.

Nochmals: Blut bleibt Blut, ihr Theologen! Nein wenigstens zu dem folterwilligen Gott, den Bibel und Tradition festhalten! Was bleibt dann noch? Bis auf weiteres. Mit Blut, Kreuz, Gebein. Sie stabilisieren den Glauben sichtbar. Zutiefst verletzte Psychen brauchen sie vor allem, wenn Reliquien den Ruch des Blutigen haben. Die Sucher kamen freilich nicht voran.

Dann vergewaltigten und mordeten wir unter den christlichen Ungarn. Bei der Einnahme Jerusalems im Sommer massakrierten wir zigtausend Sarazenen. Blut will zu Blut. Er betete heftiger. Das kam sie teuer zu stehen. Blut verlangt nach gleichem. Es war schon ein seltsamer Mann, der sich von anderen Menschen aufessen lassen wollte.

Man kann die Unbescheidenheit nicht weiter treiben. Authentisch ist sie nicht. Der Grundvorgang der Gottesverzehrung bleibt. September verehrt. Der Brauch, sie kniend zu ersteigen, ist alt. Am Abend des Bald ist selbst Golgotha nicht Marter genug. In der Folgezeit findet sich ein Kult der vielfach vorhandenen und vielfach verehrten Vorhaut Jesu. An ihren Bildern sollt ihr sie erkennen. Hier scheinen, unter dem Vorwand des Glaubens, der Phantasie keine Grenzen gesetzt zu sein.

Wer sich als Liebhaber sieht, braucht nicht nur Bilder anzusehen, wie sie in fast allen Museen zu finden sind. Es kommt noch schlimmer. Die andere ist entschieden blutiger. Helvetius Alles schon bekannt? Allerdings bleibt die Kenntnis meist ohne Konsequenzen. Und wir anderen? Also immer. Als habe nicht jeder Glaubenssatz seine Blutgeschichte! In einigen lateinamerikanischen Staaten offizielle Religion: der Katholizismus wird die Garotte noch immer als Folterinstrument eingesetzt.

Alles bekannt? Der sogenannte Hexenwahn war eine technische Abfolge von durch und durch rational organisierten Verbrechen. Das Instrumentarium der Folter? Nicht selten sind die Namen dem christlichen Fundus entlehnt. Sie gaben ihr die Form maschineller Produktion. Das von ihnen definierte System hat hierarchischen Charakter: Es legt von oben her das Oben wie das Unten und die entsprechenden Mittelwerte fest Bauanleitung der Maschine. Eine durchorganisierte Religion lebt nicht vom Wort allein. In der Maschine wird das Wort Fleisch; hier nimmt es Gestalt an.

Die Methode des Anschauenlassens ist erprobt; auch aus den Folterkellern der Gegen wart wird von ihr berichtet. Vor mir liegt ein Ausstellungskatalog. Keine mittelalterliche Tafelmalerei, kein impressionistisches Werk. Etwa drei Viertel der Maschinen waren Originale, die aus dem sechzehnten bis achtzehnten Jahrhundert des Abendlandes stammen. Gregor XIII. Paul IV. Kein Mensch schien vor dem Blutrausch der Christen sicher.

Vieler Worte bedurfte es gar nicht. Ein eiserner Block, auf der Innenseite eines Rings angebracht, wurde in den Mund geschoben, die Schnalle hinten am Ring geschlossen. Ein Loch sicherte die Luftzufuhr, doch konnte es vom Folterer zugehalten werden, und das Opfer rang um Luft. Giordano Bruno, den die Inquisition mitten in der Stadt des Papstes verbrannte, starb mit einer solchen Eisensperre im Mund.

Auch Knieschrauben tun ihren einfachen Dienst; sie werden an Knien und Ellbogen angesetzt, deren Gelenke sie nachhaltig verletzen. Nicht ohne Grund: Zum einen sah die Epoche, in der W. Doch wirkte es bis in die letzten Amtsstuben der Monarchie hinein, nicht zuletzt aufgrund seiner beispiellosen Akribie, mit der die Methoden der Marter — vor allem ihre schrittweise vorzunehmende Steigerung - beschrieben waren. Die erste Exekution mit diesem Instrument ist auf den Sie wurden vor allem an Nasen, Fingern, Zehen und Brustwarzen angesetzt.

Der Tod trat — langsam! Nur die Bezeichnung dieses Folterwerkzeugs ist nicht mehr in Gebrauch. Er kann sein Opfer auch schaukeln oder mehrmals hintereinander auf die Spitze fallen lassen. Mittlerweile ist sie modernisiert: Die Tragegurte sind ebenso wie die Spitze der Pyramide elektrifiziert.

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Dieser wird an der Taille der Gefolterten angelegt. Da ist die Rede davon, wie Frauen lebendig begraben wurden. Solche Substanzen hatte jeder zu Hause. Denselben Zweck verfolgt die orale Birne, ein kunstvoll gefertigter und verzierter Eisenknebel, dessen zugespitztes Ende das Aufschlitzen der Kehle erleichtert. Ihre Gewalt wirkte zumindest indirekt gegen die Frauen. Gab es keine Christenverfolgungen? Wurden allein Christen schuldig? Waren sie nicht selbst Opfer? Daher verschweigen — auch dies eine Frage der angemahnten Redlichkeit - so gut wie alle Dokumente, Katechismen, Enzykliken, Hirtenbriefe noch immer die Tatsachen.

Die Antwort auf die gestellten Fragen setzt sich aus verschiedenen Teilen zusammen. Doch auch in bezug auf die Folter neigt sich die Waage nicht zugunsten der Christenheit. Dieses doppelsinnige Vorgehen stellt einen weiteren frommen Betrug in der Geschichte des Christentums dar. Dumme und grausame Priester! Wem gebietet ihr denn das Fasten? Etwa den Reichen? Etwa den Armen? Mai , gegeben zu Versailles, verurteilte sakrilegische Soldaten zur Durchbohrung ihrer Zunge. Sakrilegisch waren die Profanierung heiliger Bilder und Reliquien sowie die Brandschatzung geweihter Kirchen wie Kapellen.

Das war keine leere Drohung. Doch so lange wollten sie nicht warten: Von Juden grenzten Christen sich schon auf Erden ab. Erst eine Ohnmacht hindert die Fortsetzung der Prozedur. Seine Tendenz blieb dieselbe. Allgemein wurden die Juden, die es dort zahlreich gab, der Tat beschuldigt.

Ihr barbarischen Verfolger, sucht diese Dinge nur in euren Annalen Die sich gegen jede Toleranz zur Wehr setzte und ein tolerantes Verhalten erst — als eigene Erfindung! Liegen die Zeiten der Straffolter hinter uns? Welchen Wert weist jene unter Christen weitverbreitete Sittlichkeit auf, die sich der Verlockung durch himmlischen Lohn verdankt?

Die Evangelien schildern vergleichsweise behutsam, was er ihrer Meinung nach erlitt. Und die unschuldigen Opfer des Christenhasses? Das entlastet die Herren der Streckbank. Foucault wartet noch auf seine Darstellung. Also versucht sich der Kleriker als Lustgreis, und blutlose Theologie lebt ihre Phantasien aus. Schamhaare verbergen den Satan, und daher wird gesucht, mit Nadeln und Stiletten gestochen, rasiert, geschabt, versengt, mit Schwefel die behaarte Stelle freigebrannt.

Wird gefunden, ist der Tod sicher. Und weshalb sollte nicht gefunden werden? Dann brannte er die Frau mit Schwefelfedern unter den Achseln und am Hals. Darauf wurde sie erneut gestreckt, diesmal mit schweren Gewichten auf den einzelnen Zehen. Dann kam sie auf die Streckbank. Dann schraubte man ihre Waden so fest in spanische Stiefel, bis das Blut aus den Zehen kam. Und wieder das Streckbett, wieder die Streckleiter.

Dann der Schraubstock, sechs Stunden. Die Praxis der Verfolgung von Andersdenkenden nennt sich legal; sie ist Normen unterworfen. Folter und Tod geschehen streng nach dem Gesetz derer, die von ihnen profitieren. Das Oben wie das Unten sind festgeschrieben. Lockert sich das Band, kommt erneut die Gewalt derer da oben zum Zuge. Darin besteht der Herrschaftswert der Folter. Ihnen war gesagt worden, die Untersuchung solle die Wirkung von Strafen auf das Lernverhalten messen. Ist die Folter eine universale und ewige Institution?

Hielt das Christentum den Blutdurst nicht nur nicht in Schach, sondern wollte es ihn erst gar nicht stillen? Wurde die Folter abgeschafft? Verweisen Juristen allerdings auf die zunehmende Individualisierung der Person und die daraus folgende Festlegung des Schuldgedankens, so wird man kaum fehlgehen, wenn man diese Entwicklungen nicht dem Guthabenkonto des Christentums und seiner Kirchen gutschreibt.

Die Gegenwart freigesprochen? Sie belegt die Inhumanen mit einem wissenschaftlichen Namen, als seien sie seltene Insekten, die in eine Vitrine abwandern. Da liegen sie, die Rigoristen und Grobianisten christlicher Geschichte. Sex and Crime mit Religion, mit christlicher Religion, gar mit christlichen Kirchen2 in Verbindung zu bringen ist noch immer gewagt. Denn das kirchliche Christentum hat anderes anzubieten: eine Geschichte und Gegenwart der Gewalt und der Geschlechtlichkeit, gegen die das Blut eines Kaninchens und ein Koitus von zwei Jugendlichen gering zu veranschlagen sind.

Doch die Wirklichkeit des Abendlandes, das in den Reden von Politikern und Kirchenleuten so oft vorkommt, sieht anders aus: ein Bodensatz der Schmerzen zuerst, darauf ein blutig-harter Basalt quer durch Europa gelegt. Diese Suppe aus verrottendem Blut, aus zerquetschten Gebeinen, aus verfaulenden Kadavern riecht nicht gut. Doch sie gibt den wahren Geruch der Geschichte ab. Mitten unter uns. Beim Waschen der Talare trocken bleiben? Die Frechheit der Leute mit dem Alles-halb-soschlimm-Gesicht bittet nicht. Andernfalls drohen Christen — im Volksgerichtshofton!

Mitleid, das sie verweigern, sei ihnen versagt. Alles andere bricht den Leserinnen die Treue. Entsprechend simpel sind jedenfalls die Sanktionen. Wie inhuman die Gewichte kirchlicher Moral verteilt sind? Das ist ein Fehler. Es ist auch eine Kampfansage gegen Milliarden Menschen. Diese asketische Gegenwelt ist nicht nur in der Praxis gescheitert, sondern auch in ihrer Ideologie des Selbsthasses29 grausam falsch. Sie sahen sich als Lehrer der Welt, zumindest auf dem Terrain ihrer Moral, und rotteten jede Kenntnis der Liebe und der Liebeskunst aus, die Menschen sich erobert hatten.

Wer kann lachen in einer christlichen Welt! Sie macht nicht nur die Befallenen krank. Von den Folterern zu schweigen. Ich konnte diese Erscheinung bei bissigen alten Jungfrauen und asketischen Moralisten sehen. Und brutal mit allen anderen. Alacoque, verstorben und heiliggesprochen, schnitt sich ein Jesus-Monogramm in die Brust und brannte es aus, als es zu schnell heilte. Wer es fassen kann, fasse es Mt 19,12! Asketisch disziplinierte Sprache ist stets Abwehrsprache.

Also keine Flucht ins Mittelalter! Und geschlagen? Habe ich mich in der Kirche unartig betragen? Gott verspricht den guten Kindern seinen Schutz und Segen und die Seligkeit. In seinem 9. Die Nonnen waren es doch, die uns zur Beichte zwangen Die Nonnen waren es, die in die Kirche gingen, beteten, den Rosenkranz schwangen und uns Gottesbotschaften einbleuten. Clemenceau die ihnen anvertrauten Kinder mit Ruten und Brennesseln schlugen, ihnen befahlen, Waschwasser, Schmutz, den Auswurf von Tuberkulosekranken zu sich zu nehmen.

Immer wieder finden sich — wenn genau nachgeschaut wird, auch bei sich selbst! Ich schaute in viele Gesichter. Doch ich fand keins, wie ich es suchte. Eine Erziehung der unmittelbar angewandten Art. Weltanschauungen und Verhaltensweisen werden von Menschen gelebt und von Menschen vermittelt. Das mag bei denen so sein, deren Lust sich am Blut der Opfer der eigenen Religion erregt. Niemandem steht es frei, Christ zu werden. Wie geht es noch mal —? Warum als ob?

Nichts schadet einem Politiker mehr als ein solcher Verdacht. Auf der Waage der Puritanerinnen wiegen andere Laster, politische Gewalttat inbegriffen, weniger schwer. In Michigan wird eine Frau zusammen mit einem Skelett eingeschlossen. Ihre Saat geht auf. Daher sind sie erprobt praktikabel. Selbst in der eigenen Wohnung darf - ! Dieser radikal zu begegnen ist damit eine hochstehende sittliche Forderung. Doch wer profitiert von der gewaltbetonten Moral? Denn jeder, der eine Frau begehrlich anschaut, hat in seinem Herzen schon die Ehe mit ihr gebrochen Mt 5, Zeitbedingter Rigorismus?

Papst Johannes Paul II. Warum ich mich mit Christentum und Kirche befasse? Es gibt in der Tat lohnendere, weiter in die Zukunft weisende Themen. Eros und Thanatos gehen in der Liebesreligion eine eigene Ehe ein. Fast bin ich versucht, hier den alten Satz zu zitieren, nach dem der Mensch des Menschen Wolf ist. Am Noch immer scheuen sich manche, der Wirklichkeit die Ehre zu geben und von Folter und Mord zu sprechen.

Ist sie Folter? Er kann es sich bequem machen und die Allmacht des Sehens nutzen. Konfessionslose machen eine verschwindend geringe Minderheit aus. In Uruguay, gut christlich, wurden die Tupamaros M. Rosencrof und R. Sendic in mehr als zehn Jahren Einzelhaft gefoltert, in winzigen Zellen gehalten, als Geiseln benutzt. Die Regierung tut nichts. Kaum war Brasilien in die Geheimnisse eingeweiht, ging der Lehrer nach Uruguay und setzte dort den praktischen Unterricht fort.

Andere lateinamerikanische Repressionsapparate fol terten und ermordeten mehr Menschen, aber keiner handhabte Folter und Mord so reibungslos wie diese Organisation. Oder eine Katze unters Hemd gesteckt, die unter Strom gesetzt wird und den mitgefolterten Menschen zerkratzt. Hier fanden sich zwei Ideologien, deren Kollaboration offenbar nichts im Wege stand. Laghi unternahm nichts. Was war unter der Amtszeit Laghis und mit seinem Segen geschehen?

Das Gegenteil ist wahr. Folter und Mord blieben nahezu folgenlos. Parallelen zu mittelalterlichen Foltermethoden finden sich zuhauf. Das Schaupublikum nimmt Platz, kommentiert, trinkt Bier, raucht, und die Folter setzt ein. Der wiederholte alles noch ein paarmal, dann begann er, mir die Brustwarze anzubrennen.

Lassen Sie sich keinen Sand in die Augen streuen! Es sind fast ausnahmslos die Oberhirten der christlichen Kirchen, die zur menscbenverachtenden Vergangenheit ihrer Religion schweigen! Vielmehr sind auch Christen gegen Christen am Werk! Die Geschichte des Menschen steht erst am Beginn. Herrmann, Der Anti-Katechismus. Herrmann, Vaterliebe. Ich will ja nur dein Bestes Reinbek , S. Holl, Im Keller des Heiligtums. Geschlecht und Gewalt in der Religion Stuttgart , S.

Mynarek, Denkverbot. Dahl Hrsg. Fundamentalkritik am Christentum Hamburg , S. Aber in Nordirland ist das noch der Fall. Deschner, Opus Diaboli. Dedijer, Jasenovac — das jugoslawische Auschwitz und der Vatikan Freiburg i. Fricke, Standrechtlich gekreuzigt. Herrmann, Die Caritas-Legende. Simmel, zitiert bei: C.

Stern, a. Hegele , zitiert bei: K. Deschner, Das Kreuz mit der Kirche. Peters, Folter. Geschichte der Peinlichen Befragung Hamburg , S. Spirakos, Folter als Problem des Strafrechts Frankfurt a.

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Es konnte mich nicht mehr sehen Klostermann, K. Rahner, H.

Full text of "Anthology of German poetry from Hölderlin to Rilke in English translation"

Eckert, Sadomasochismus. Szenen und Rituale Reinbek. Roh wer. Hier auch der bedenkenswerte Satz des G. Weiss, Rapporte Frankfurt a. Dazu auch U. Peters, a. Zu einer zeitweiligen folterfeindlichen Tradition der Kirche: Peters, a. Deschner, Ein Jahrhundert Heilsgeschichte. Deschner , Darmstadt , S.

Millett, Entmenschlicht. Deschner Hrsg. Jahrhundert Reinbek , I, S. Vorgrimler, a. Mt 5,29; 10,28; 11,23; 23,33; Lk 10,15; 12,5. Buggle, Denn sie wissen nicht, was sie glauben. Oder warum man redlicherweise nicht mehr Christ sein kann Reinbek , S. Herrmann, Kirchenaustritt ja oder nein? Helvetius, zitiert bei: V. Mynarek, Erster Diener Seiner Heiligkeit.

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Mynarek, a. Zur Staatssicherung einer Religion bzw. Schopenhauer, zitiert bei: Welter, a. Adorno, Minima moralia. Barz Celsus, Julian, Bayle, Voltaire, Helvetius. Freiburg i. Dumitriu, Incognito New York , bei: Millett, a. Camus, bei: U. Twain, bei: Th. Erster Teil Mt 1,1—7, Voss, Das Schwarzmondtabu. Die kulturelle Bedeutung des weib lichen Zyklus Stuttgart , S. Bakunin, zitiert bei: W. Goethe, Zahme Xenien, bei: G. Feuerbach, bei: W. Jahnn, zitiert bei: H. Wolffheim, a. Heine, zitiert bei: W.

Hebbel, bei: Ahlheim, a. Hebbel, zitiert bei: Ahlheim, a. Hasler, Wie der Papst unfehlbar wurde. Holl, a. Schopenhauer, bei: Welter, a. Leopardi, bei: R. Camus, zitiert bei: U. Hartmann, zitiert bei: R. Lessing, zitiert bei: Th. Brauers Hrsg. Schopenhauer zu Pythagoras Welter, a. Thiry d'Holbach, bei: E. Thiry d'Holbach, bei: Hoehl, a. Helvetius, bei: Mack, a. Kazantzakis, G. Vidal, E. Julian, bei: Deschner, Christentum, S. Oder warum man redlich erweise nicht mehr Christ sein kann Reinbek , S. Villeneuve, a. Foltertod des Sohnes 1 P. Fricke, a. Freud, Th. Reik und C. Jung: A. Kuckertz Hrsg.

Pageis, Versuchung durch Erkenntnis. Die gnostischen Evangelien Frankfurt a. Mt 1,1; Jo 8, Streminger, a. Hartmann, bei: R. Ausgabe Freiburg i. Wolff, Jesus der Mann. Harenberg Hrsg. Goldstein Hrsg. Limbeck, Heilvoller Verrat? Judas im Neuen Testament Stuttgart , S. Kremers Hrsg. Bornkamm, Jesus von Nazareth Stuttgart , S. Buggle, a. Albert, Das Elend der Theologie. Freud und Th. Heer, a. Eliade, a.