See also:sect of the
See also:middle ages . They were the debris of an early
See also:Christianity, scattered in the loth to i4th centuries over East and West, having their analogues in the
See also:world as well . In the East they were called
See also:Bogomils (q.v.) and
See also:Paulicians; in the West,
See also:Patarenes, Tixerands (i.e . Weavers), Bulgars, Concorricii, Albanenses, Albigeois, &c.; in both,
See also:Cathars and Manicheans . This article relates to the Western Cathars, as they appear (1) in the Cathar Ritual written in Provencal and preserved in a 13th-century MS. in ;
See also:Lyons, published by Cledat,
See also:Paris, 1888; (2) in
See also:Bernard Gui's Practica inquisitionis haereticae pravitatis, edited by
See also:Canon C . Douais, Paris, 1886; and (3) in the procbs verbal of the inquisitors' reports . Some were downright dualists, and believed that there are two gods or principles, one, of
See also:good and the other of evil, both eternal; but as a
See also:rule they subordinated the evil to the good . All were universalists in so far as they believed in the ultimate salvation of all men.' Their tenets were as follows :—The evil
See also:god, Satan, who inspired the malevolent parts of the Old Testament, is god and
See also:lord of this world, of the things that are seen and are temporal, and especially of the outward man which is decaying, of the earthen vessel, of the
See also:body of
See also:death, of the flesh which takes us
See also:captive under the
See also:law of sin and
See also:desire . This world is the only true purgatory and
See also:hell, being the antithesis of the world eternal, of the inward man renewed
See also:day by day, of Christ's peace and
See also:kingdom which are not of this world . Men are the result of a primal war in
See also:heaven, when hosts of angels incited by Satan or Lucifer to revolt were driven out, and were imprisoned in terrestrial bodies created for them by the adversary . But there are also
See also:celestial bodies, bodies spiritual and not natural . These the
See also:angel souls
See also:left behind in heaven, and they are buildings from God, houses not made with hands, tunics eternal .
' A certain
See also:Peter (Doc . Doat., 22, p.98) declared that could he but get hold of the false and perfidious God of the Catholics who created a thousand men in
See also:order to save a single one and
See also:damn all the
See also:rest, he would break him to pieces and
See also:tear him asunder with his nails and
See also:spit in his
See also:face . Imprisoned in the garment of flesh, burdened with its sin, souls long to be clothed upon with the habitations they left in heaven . So long as they are at home in the body, they are absent from the Lord . They would fain be at home with the Lord, and absent from the body, for which there is no place in heaven since flesh and
See also:blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor corruption inherit incorruption . There is no resurrection of the flesh . The true resurrection is the spiritual
See also:baptism bequeathed by Christ to the
See also:boni homines . How shall man
See also:escape from his prison-
See also:house of flesh, and undo the effects of his fall ? For mere death brings no liberation, unless a man is become a new creation, a new
See also:Adam, as Christ was; unless he has received the
See also:gift of the spirit and become a vehicle of the Paraclete . If a man
See also:dies unreconciled to God through Christ, he must pass through another cycle of imprisonment in flesh; perhaps in a human, but with equal likelihood in an animal's body . For when after death the
See also:powers of the air throng around and persecute, the soul flees into the first lodging of
See also:clay that it finds.' Christ was a
See also:life-giving spirit, and the boni homines, the " good men," as the Cathars called themselves, are his ambassadors . They alone have kept the spiritual baptism with
See also:fire which Christ instituted, and which has no connexion with the
See also:water baptism of
See also:John; for the latter was an unregenerate soul, who failed to recognize the Christ, a
See also:Jew whose mode of baptism with water belongs to the fleeting outward world and is opposed to the kingdom of God .
It would be interesting to trace Bardesanes and the
See also:Syriac Hymn of the Soul in all this . The Cathars fell into two classes, corresponding to the Baptized and the Catechumens of the early
See also:church, namely, the Perfect, who had been " consoled," i.e. had received the gift of the Paraclete; and the credentes or Believers . The Perfect formed the ordained priesthood, were
See also:women no less than men, and controlled the church; they received from the Believers unquestioning obedience, and as vessels of election in whom the
See also:Holy Spirit already dwelt, they were adored by the faithful, who were taught to prostrate themselves before them whenever they asked for their prayers . For none but the Consoled had received into their
See also:hearts the spirit of God's Son, which cries " Abba,
See also:Father." They alone were become adopted sons, and so able to use the Lord's Prayer, which begins, " Our Father, which
See also:art in heaven." The Perfect alone knew God and could address him in this prayer, the only one they used in their ceremonies . The mere credens could at best invoke the living
See also:saint, and ask him to pray for him . All adherents of the sect seem to have kept three Lents in the
See also:year, as also to have fasted Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays of each week; in these fasts a
See also:diet of
See also:bread and water was usual . But a credens under
See also:probation for initiation, which lasted at least one and often several years, fasted always . The life of a Perfect was so hard, and, thanks to the inquisitors, so fraught with danger, that most Believers deferred the rite until the death-
See also:bed, as in the early centuries many believers deferred baptism . The rule imposed
See also:complete chastity.' A
See also:husband at initiation left his wife, committing her " to God and the
See also:gospel" ; a wife her husband . A male Perfect could not
See also:lay his
See also:hand on a woman without incurring penance of a three-days' fast . All begetting of
See also:children is evil, for Adam's chambering with
See also:Eve was the forbidden fruit . It is good for a man not to
See also:touch a woman; a man's relations with his own wife are merely a means of fornication, and
See also:marriage and concubinage are indistii,uishable as against the kingdom of God, in which there is no marrying or giving in marriage .
Those only have been redeemed from
See also:earth who were virgins, undefiled with women . The passages of the New Testament which seem to connive at the married relation were interpreted by the Cathars as spoken in regard of Christ and the church . The Perfect must also leave his father and
See also:mother, and his children, for a man's foes are they of his own
See also:household . The
See also:family must be sacri ' Here we have a
See also:doctrine of metempsychosis which seems of
See also:Indian origin (see
See also:ASCETICISM) . But
See also:Julius Caesar (de B.G. vi . 13) attests this belief among the
See also:Druids of Gaul.ficed to the divine kinship . He that-loveth father or mother more than Christ is not worthy of him, nor he that loveth more his son or daughter . The Perfect takes up his
See also:cross and follows after Christ . Next he must abstain from all flesh diet except
See also:fish . He may not even eat
See also:cheese or eggs or milk, for they, like
See also:meat, are produced per viam generations seu coitus . Everything that is sexually begotten is impure . Fish were supposed to be
See also:born in the water without sexual connexion, and on the basis of this old physiological fallacy the Cathars equally with the Catholic framed their rule of
See also:fasting .
And there was yet anotherreason why the Perfect should not eat animals, for a human soul might be doing
See also:time in its body . Nor might a Perfect or one in course of probation kill anything, for the
See also:Mosaic commandment applies to all life . He might not lie nor take an
See also:oath, for the
See also:precept " Swear not at all " was, like the rest of the gospel, taken seriously . This was the chief of their " anarchist doctrines." 2 The Cathar
See also:rites, which remain to us in a
See also:manual of the sect, "recall," says the
See also:Guiraud, no too favourable a witness, "those of the
See also:primitive church with a truth and precision the more striking the nearer we go back to the apostolic age." The
See also:medieval inquisitor saw in them an aping of the rites of the Catholic church as he knew them; but they were really, says the same authority, " archaeological vestiges (i.e. survivals) of the primitive Christian
See also:liturgy . In the bosom of medieval society they were the last witness to a state of things that the
See also:regular development of Catholic cult had amplified and modified . They resemble the erratic blocks which lost amid
See also:alien soils recall, where we find them, the
See also:geological conditions of earlier ages . This being so, it is of the deepest
See also:interest to study the Cathar cult, since through its rites we can get a glimpse of those of the primitive church, about which want of documents leaves us too often in the dark." The central Cathar rite was consolamentum, or baptism with spirit and fire . The spirit received was the Paraclete derived from God and sent by Christ, who said, " The Father is greater than I." Of a consubstantial Trinity the Cathars naturally had never heard .
See also:Infant baptism they rejected because it was unscriptural, and because all baptism with water was an
See also:appanage of the Jewish demiurge
See also:Jehovah, and as such expressly rejected by Christ . The consolamentum removes
See also:original sin, undoes the sad effects of the primal fall, clothes upon us our habitation which is from heaven, restores to us the lost
See also:tunic of immortality . A Consoled is an angel walking in the flesh, whom the thin
See also:screen of death alone separates from Christ and the beatific vision . The rite was appointed by Christ, and has been handed down from generation to generation by the boni homines .
The long probation called "abstinence " which led up to it is a survival of the primitive catechumenate with its scrutinies . The prostrations of the credens before the Perfect were in their manner and import identical with the prostrations of the
See also:catechumen before the exorcist . We find the same
See also:custom in the
See also:Celtic church of St
See also:Columba . Just as at the third
See also:scrutiny the early catechumen passed a last examination in the Gospels, Creed and Lord's Prayer, so after their year of abstinence the credens receives creed and prayer; the allocution with which the elder "handed on" this prayer is preserved, and of it the Abbe Guiraud remarks that, if it were not in a Cathar ritual, one might believe it to be of Catholic origin . It is so Christian in
See also:tone, he quaintly remarks elsewhere, that an inquisitor might have used it quite as well as a heretic . In it the Perfect addresses the postulant, as in the corresponding Armenian rite, by the name of Peter; and explains to him from Scripture the indwelling of the spirit in the Perfect, and his adoption as a son by God . The Lord's Prayer is then repeated by the postulant after the elder, who explains it clause by clause; the words panis 2 The Abbe Guiraud remarks that in refusing to take oaths the Cathars " contraried the social principles on which the constitutions of all states repose," and congratulates himself that society is not yet so thoroughly " laicized " as to have given up oaths in the most important acts of social life . superstantialis being interpreted not of the material but of the spiritual bread, which consists of the Words of Life . ; There followed the Renunciation, primitive enough in
See also:form, but the postulant solemnly renounced, not Satan and his
See also:works and pomp, but the harlot church of the persecutors, whose prayers were more deadly than desirable . He renounced the cross which its priests had signed on him with their
See also:chrism, their sham baptisms and other magical rites . Next followed the spiritual baptism itself, consisting of imposition of hands, and holding of the Gospel on the postulant's
See also:head . The elder begins a fresh allocution by citing Matt.
See also:xxviii .
19,Mark xvi . 15, 16, John iii . 3 (where the Cathars' text must originally have omitted in V . 5 the words " of water and," since their presence contradicts their
See also:argument) . Acts ix . 17, 18, viii . 14-17, are then cited; also John xx . 21-23, Matt. xvi . 18,19, Matt. xviii . 18-2o, for the Perfect one receives in this rite power to bind and loose . The Perfect's vocation is then defined: he must not commit
See also:adultery nor
See also:homicide, nor lie, nor swear any oath, nor pick and steal, nor do unto another that which he would not have done unto himself . He shall
See also:pardon his wrongdoers, love his enemies, pray for them that calumniate and accuse him, offer the other cheek to the smiter, give up his
See also:mantle to him that takes his tunic, neither
See also:judge nor condemn .
Asked if he will fulfil each of these, the postulant answers: " I have this will and determination . Pray God for me that he give me his strength." The next
See also:episode of the rite exactly reproduces the
See also:Roman sonfiteor as it stood in the 2nd century; " the postulant (says: Parcite nobis . For all the sins I have committed, in word or thought or deed, I come for pardon to God and to the church and to you all.' And the Christians shall say: ' By God and by us and by the church may they be pardoned thee, and we pray God that he pardon you them.' There follows the
See also:act of " consoling." The elder takes the Gospel off the
See also:cloth, where it has lain all through the ceremony, and places it on the postulant's head, and the other good men
See also:present place their right hands on his head; they shall say the parcias (spare), and thrice the Let us adore the Father and Son and Holy Spirit," and then pray thus: " Holy Father, welcome thy servant in thy
See also:justice and send upon him thy
See also:grace and thy holy spirit." Then they repeat the " Let us adore," the Lord's Prayer, and read the Gospel (John i . 1-17) . This was the vital
See also:part of the whole rite . The cred ens is now a Perfect one . He is girt with the sacred
See also:round his naked body under the breasts . Where the fear of the persecutor was absent he was also clad in a black
See also:gown . The Perfect ones present give him the
See also:kiss of peace, and the rite is over . This part of the rite answers partly to the Catholic confirmation of a baptized
See also:person, partly to the ordination of a
See also:pope of Rome or, Alexandria . The latter in being ordained had the Gospel laid on their heads, and the same feature occurs in old Gallican and Coptic rites of ordaining a
See also:bishop . Thus the Cathar ritual, like that of the Armenian dissenters (see PAULICIANS), reflects an age when priestly ordination was pot yet differentiated from confirmation .
" Is itnote curious," says the Abbe Guiraud, " to remark that the essential rite of the consolamentum is in effect nothing but the most ancient form of Christian ordination?" The Cathar Eucharist was equally primitive, and is thus described by a contemporary writer in a 13th-century MS. of the Milan Library:—" The Benediction of bread is thus performed by the Cathars . They all, men and women, go up to a table, and
See also:standing up say the ` Our Father." And he who is
See also:prior among them, at the close of the Lord's Prayer, shall take hold of the bread and say: ` Thanks be to the God of our Jesus Christ . May the Spirit be with us all.' And after that he breaks and distributes to all . And such bread is called bread blessed, al-though no one believes that out of it is made the body of Christ . 'Cf . S . Gregorii Ep. ix . 12 (26) : " Mos apostolorum fuit ut ad ipsam solummodo orationem oblationis hostiam consecrarent." (" The custom of the apostles was to use no other prayer but the Lord's in consecrating the
See also:host of the offering.") The Albanenses, however, deny that it can be blessed or sanctified, because it is corporeal " (i.e. material) . As
See also:Tertullian relates of his contemporaries in the end century, so the Cathars would reserve part of their bread of blessing and keep it for years, eating of it occasionally though only after saying the Benedicite . The Perfect kept it wrapped up in a bag of pure white cloth, tied round the
See also:neck,2 and sent it long distances to regions which through persecution they could not enter . On the death-bed it could even, like the Catholic Viaticum, take the place of the rite of Consolamentum, if this could not be performed . Once a
See also:month this
See also:solemn rite of breaking bread was held, the credentes assisting .
The service was called apparellamentum, because a table was covered with a white cloth and the Gospel laid on it . The Perfect were adored, and the kiss of peace was passed round . Theinfluence of Catharism on the Catholic church was enormous . To counteract it celibacy was finally imposed on the
See also:clergy, and the
See also:great mendicant orders evolved; while the
See also:constant polemic of the Cathar teachers against the cruelty, rapacity and irascibility of the Jewish tribal god led the church to prohibit the circulation of the Old Testament among laymen . The
See also:sacrament of " extreme
See also:unction " was also evolved by way of competing with the death-bed consolamentum . AUTHORITIES-J . J . I . Dellinger, Beitrage zur Sektengeschichte Munchen, 1890) ;
See also:Jean Guiraud, Questions d'histoire (Paris, 1906); F . C . Conybeare, The
See also:Key of Truth (
See also:Oxford, 1898) ;
See also:Henry C .
See also:History of the Inquisition (New
See also:York, 1888) ; C .
Douais, L' Inquisition (Paris, 1906), and his
See also:Les Hiritiques du midi au XIIIe siecle (Paris, 1891) ; Les Albigeois (Paris, 1879) ; also Practica Inquisitionis (of Bernard Gui or Guidon), (Paris, 1886) ; L . Cledat, Le Nouveau Testament, traduit au XIIIe siecle en langue provengale, suivi d'un rituel cathare (Paris, 1887) ; E .
See also:Cunitz in Beitrage zu den theol . Wissensch . (1852), vol. iv.; P.
See also:Liber Sententiarum Inguis .
See also:Tholos . 1307–1323 (Amsterdam, 1692);
See also:Hahn, Gesch. der Keiser
See also:im M . A . (
See also:Stuttgart, 1845) ; Ch .
See also:Schmidt, Histoire rt doctrine de la secte
See also:des Cathares (Paris, 1849) ; A . Lombard, Pauliciens bulgares et Bons-Hommes (
See also:Geneva, 1879) ; Fredericq, Corpus documentorum haer. pravitatis Neerlandicae (Gent, 1889–1896) ; Felix Tocco, Nuovi documenti " in Archiv. di studi ital . (1901), and his L'Eresia nel medio evo (Florence, 1881) ; P .
Flade, Das remische Inquisitionsverfahren in Deutschland (
See also:Leipzig, 1902); Ch .
See also:Molinier, " Rapport sur une
See also:mission en
See also:Italic," in Archives scientifiques de Paris, tom . 14 (1888) ; C . H . Haskins, " Robert le Bougre," in
See also:American Hist . Rev . (1902) . (F . C .
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