RESPONSE PAPER 8 - one being transcendent should have...

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RESPONSE PAPER 8 Two Swords Once an entity gains power, it must naturally takes steps to maintain it. This is what the church was faced with in the 14 th century. As opposed to the churches of earlier times which boasted mostly symbolic power, the 14 th century church began to experience an overflow of material wealth, which. This material wealth, it could be said, “corrupted” the church, although, frankly, it is difficult to think of the church as a pure institution previously. It did, however, probably cause the church to want to defend its new power. Once government leaders saw that the church was far more focused on material things than eternal salvation, they took to criticizing this Avignonese papacy. This brought yet another clash of power between church and state. The Unam Sanctam of 1302 declared that there are two swords, that one is heavenly and one is earthly, and that the heavenly
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Unformatted text preview: one, being transcendent, should have control over the earthly. There was then Marsiglio of Padua’s Defensor Pacis which laid some fairly revolutionary suggestions as to the church’s scope of power. The Defensor Pacis claimed, contrary to the Unam Sanctam, that the state should be in control of the church. The Pragmatic Sanction of Bourges and Petrarch’s letter then attacked directly the Avignonese papacy. This certainly seems to be the first time since the religion was outlawed when one hears such outspoken criticism of Christian authority. It could merely be due to the state government wanting to control the church, but Petrarch and Marsiglio of Padua are both scholars, and would have no reason to have a political agenda. One can only assume, then, that the newly intellectual west was becoming concerned with the level of power their religion had over them....
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