Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Monarchy - ad orientem

Mrs Vidal's twitterfeed this afternoon cites to a comprehensive apologia for monarchy from an Eastern Orthodox perspective.  You can find it here.

A sample:
“Monarchy is superior to every other constitution and form of government. For polyarchy, where everyone competes on equal terms, is really anarchy and discord.” —Eusebius of Caesaria (4th Century)
“The three most ancient opinions about God are atheism (or anarchy), polytheism (or polyarchy), and monotheism (or monarchy). The children of Greece played with the first two; let us leave them to their games. For anarchy is disorder: and polyarchy implies factious division, and therefore anarchy and disorder. Both these lead in the same direction – to disorder; and disorder leads to disintegration; for disorder is the prelude to disintegration. What we honour is monarchy”—St. Gregory the Theologian (4th Century) 
In the 14th Century, St. Gregory of Palamas encountered a movement of revolution and democracy that he condemned:
“God has counted the Emperors worthy to rule over His inheritance, over His earthly Church.” 
A more recent saint, John of Kronstadt, put it more tersely:
“Hell is a democracy. Heaven is a kingdom.” 
However one may try to develop a theory of democracy over monarchism, he will not get there by citing the church fathers.