28 October 2010
The Crusades Are Filled With Love
Christian Europeans revered the crusades as an act of love. Jonathan Riley-Smith explains this in “Crusading as an Act of Love.” He reveals the origin of the crusades and provides insight into their justification. This justification provides a foundation of understanding of the primary texts during the Middle Ages. It also assists with the understanding of the relationship and views between the different nations during turmoil. Jonathan Riley-Smith sites that the crusades were an act of love not hate or the quest for power which is the reason behind the crusades. The objective behind this is that the crusaders are trying to save the pagans from themselves. It is also considered an act of chastising a child out of love. The child doesn’t want to be chastised, but it will help the child in the future. This idea can be distilled to one action tough love.
The crusaders see the pagans as stealing Christ inheritance in addition to providing tough love. The Christians considered the Muslims control over Jerusalem an insult to Jesus inheritance. The Crusaders believed that they should take up their crosses since Jesus died for them and fight and die for Jesus. This is also reflected in the thought that if you love God you desire his honor and glory. This act of love is by the European Christians and meant for the pagans. The Jewish people were pagans, but they were more tolerated than the Muslims. They lived alongside the European Christians were not afforded the same rights. The crusaders decided to attack the infidels that were near them in addition to the Muslims. The attacks on the Jews also strengthened their communal ties, while the crusaders resolve brought them closer and more unified. Instead of attacking, the Jews would Martyr themselves. Some of them even killed themselves and their family before crusaders could defile their bodies with swords.