Iuratus: Uncovering Christianity through the Internal Logic of Liber Iuratus Honorii Continued

Start at the beginning

The previous instalment in case you missed it

Another place this circumvention of Church authority occurs is in the promise of releasing three souls from purgatory. Again this was part of the classic authority of the Church; souls in purgatory could be eventually released (or released sooner) through the performances of masses in their name. In the final prayer of the first section of the text, just before the vision of the divine is granted there is a request to “breakest the brazen gates and deliveredst thy friends out of the dark places of hell.” Now here the text says hell, but before, and after this section it says purgatory. Regardless, freeing souls from hell or purgatory is quite a claim for an individual to make. Even the priests of the Church could not just release a soul from purgatory. It took continued prayers and rituals to gain that release, but Honorius claims this ritual can offer just such a release immediately.

Twice there is this circumvention of the Church authority, or the Church monopoly, through the personal forgiveness of sins and the release of souls in purgatory. Earlier in the ritual it is required for the practitioner to attend mass and confession, but by the end through prayer, devotion, and ritual they have become an authority of forgiveness unto themselves. Again I feel this should be framed not as a challenge to the Christian nature of the text, but more of a personal liberation and challenge to the structure and monopoly of the Church in such regards. The domain of forgiveness was that of the priests, so this text could be seen as a threat to that domain, or possibly an extension of the priestly authority and power which connects to the idea addressed later that the author was a priest himself.

The text can be conclusively identified as Christian based on the contents. The oaths that prevent the text from being wide spread, coupled with the danger of the text being discovered, suggest that the text’s contents are genuine as there is no need to hide or disguise a text that no one will read. There are also the elements that are contrary and inflammatory to the Church which would have been excluded in a non-Christian text in disguise. Since a non Christian text hiding in Christian imagery and language would strive to be palatable to the Christian masses as a safety precaution, it can be concluded from the statements challenging the Church’s authority and the threat and oaths that Liber Iuratus Honorii was written as a genuinely Christian text.


2 Responses to Iuratus: Uncovering Christianity through the Internal Logic of Liber Iuratus Honorii Continued

  1. […] Uncovering Christianity Through the Internal Logic of Liber Iuratus Honorii Part II […]

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