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  • Hi I'm John Green and this is Crash Course European History.

  • So, last week we took a break from religion to show that amidst warfare and bitter controversy

  • over doctrine, people were inventing and innovating and enslaving.

  • Europeans were eating new foods, hanging out more in cities, and making advances in commerce

  • and legal protections for some people.

  • While also inventing systems of oppression to enslave others.

  • Years ago, historians firmly believed that the Protestant religion promoted capitalismthat

  • is, all the business and commerce that were springing up at the time were caused by the

  • Reformation.

  • Some historians still find that Martin Luther's other worldly interests expanded to this-worldly

  • activities, like reading, in ways that boosted prosperity, but the rise of capitalism was

  • complex, and also it happened in non-Protestant communities.

  • So today, let's shift perspectives back to how the Catholics were handling all this.

  • Were they ready to simply surrender their influence in European society?

  • Did the Church just turn its back on this momentous challenge of Protestantism and continue

  • down its much criticized path?

  • No.

  • They responded.

  • Leaders and the faithful created a sturdy, even strident Catholic-Reformation, or Counter-Reformation,

  • that also provided a little grease to the wheels of commerce.

  • And today we're gonna look at the Catholic Reformation and how it influenced not just

  • Europe but the world.

  • INTRO

  • The task of reform fell to Pope Paul III, who like many Renaissance popes lived in the

  • lap of luxury and engaged in corrupt practices such as appointing two of his grandsons cardinals

  • in their early teens.

  • He only hired the best people.

  • Also, why does this pope have grandsons?

  • That reminds me of the great last words of the Irish poet, Brendan Behan.

  • A nun was giving him an injection, and he turned to her and said, “bless you sister.

  • May all your sons be bishops.”

  • Then he died.

  • But Pope Paul III knew, partly because of external pressure, that the Catholic Church

  • needed to shape up.

  • Several attempts at undertaking reforms in formal meetings were blocked by powerful individuals

  • who liked the status quo.

  • Powerful individuals and the status quo: The greatest love story of this or any time.

  • But the church was tired of seeing its overall power decrease, and so in 1545, the Council

  • of Trent, composed of high church officials, assembled to stop the Protestant momentum.

  • And this council continued until 1563, a series of meetings that lasted so long that by the

  • time it was over, both Pope Paul III and his successor Julius III had died.

  • I've definitely had meetings that felt like they were 18 years long.

  • I'm not sure if they were, though.

  • So, among the adherents to Protestantism were some of the most powerful princes and members

  • of the nobility in Europe.

  • And some Catholic leaders wanted those powerful Protestants on their side.

  • But eventually the council eventually decided not to compromise.

  • Instead, the pronouncements of the Council of Trent were stark and emphatic.

  • Already in 1542 while waiting for a council actually to get organized, the papacy had

  • expanded the work of the Inquisition, which had been established in the 13th century to

  • stamp out heresies in southern France and Italy.

  • But now the Inquisition targeted Protestants and searched for heresy also among conquered

  • people in the New World.

  • The Council also affirmed principles of transubstantiationthat is, the belief that the blood and wine of

  • the communion sacrament become the actual body and blood of Jesus.

  • It upheld the centrality of the seven sacraments, and the selling of indulgences stuck around

  • too.

  • Clergy were to remain celibate and chaste--unlike most Protestant clerics.

  • And all Catholics were to live by faith /and/ practice good works as their path to salvationnot

  • by faith alone like the Protestants.

  • The church also began establishing seminaries where priests could become more informed in

  • Catholic theology.

  • And reformers felt this training was sorely needed for priests because they were being

  • confronted by complicated Protestant challenges to Catholic doctrine.

  • And the Church began the Papal Index, a list of books that Catholics were forbidden to

  • read; In addition the Church reached deeper into society when it began to further regulate

  • marriages.

  • With the creation of a list of forbidden books and the declaration of power over marriage,

  • the Counter-Reformation took Catholicism from a point of weakness and actually expanded

  • its power.

  • At least over those who believed.

  • Even before these events, what would become a major bulwark of Catholicism and its Counter-Reformation

  • was taking shape.

  • Because in the 1520s, after being shot as a soldier in one of Spain's wars, a Spanish

  • nobleman took up the challenge to fortify Catholicism.

  • Just as Luther wrestled with his faith, Ignatius of Loyola suffered spiritual agonies and emerged

  • a charismatic leader--but unlike Luther, Ignatius and his followers remained loyal to the Catholic

  • Church.

  • In 1540, the Pope declared Ignatius's followers a religious order called the Society of Jesus

  • orJesuits.”

  • Many pre-existing Catholic religious orders were rededicating themselves to protect and

  • nourish their faith.

  • But Loyola's approach was especially effective given the challenges from Protestantism in

  • the 1520s and thereafter.

  • First, because he organized and ran his group like an army around a hierarchy of command;

  • joining required several years of training and a strict code of discipline.

  • And all of this was timely given the Church's reputation for corruption, lax morals, and

  • in many cases, priestly incompetence, including ignorance of Latin.

  • That wasn't a problem with the Jesuits.

  • Second, the Jesuits founded schools where humanistic education thrived alongside religious

  • instruction.

  • These became a mechanism for combining the latest in intellectual practice with the revitalization

  • and reaffirmation of Catholic theology, and it was important because one of the attractions

  • of Protestantism was its emphasis on broader literacy so that everyone could directly connect

  • with scripture.

  • The Jesuits argued that Catholics could also spread education--which is why incidentally

  • there are so many Loyola Universities around the world.

  • And that brings us to our final point: In addition to reforming Catholicism in Europe,

  • the Jesuits undertook globalizing the faith as a regular part of their mission.

  • Through them, Catholicism truly did become a world religion, reaching India, and Japan,

  • and Africa, and the New World.

  • And this Jesuit activism in establishing global relationships would eventually transform Europe

  • in ways that have only recently gained the attention of historians.

  • Let's go to the Thought Bubble.

  • The Jesuits interacted worldwide with an eye on both short and long-term results--they

  • wanted to convert souls, but they also wanted through schools to shape the way that young

  • people learned, and thus their perspective.

  • It's important to remember that no education is morally neutral--what you learn about shapes

  • the way you look at the world.

  • And as they traveled, the Jesuits were in constant touch with one another comparing

  • best practices, and they also adapted different strategies to different parts of the world

  • as their order spread across the globe.

  • They studied local languages before approaching people and in many cases took elements from

  • local beliefs and tried to persuade those they wished to convert that Catholic beliefs

  • were basically identical to local ones.

  • And it was effective.

  • In China, there were 38,000 converts to Catholicism by 1633.

  • By 1650, there were over a hundred thousand.

  • Once the Jesuits established these global contacts, they produced reports, first in

  • Latin but then translated into local European languages, and their work created a Eurocentric

  • globalization that went way beyond religion.

  • For example, they became an early version of industrial spies when it came to producing

  • porcelain, reporting back from China to Europe about the processes that went in to making

  • high-quality porcelain.

  • Spreading Catholicism was their mission, but the Jesuits were among those advancing commercial

  • and agricultural development as well.

  • Thanks, Thought Bubble.

  • Many Catholics really took the Church's reforms to heart, intensifying their devotions,

  • sometimes in ways that also helped further the religion's influence around the world.

  • Among the most renowned was the Spanish mystic and nun Saint Teresa of Avila, who had a very

  • long birth name that I will not attempt to pronounce.

  • I mean, mispronouncing things is my thing, but there's no reason to go down that road.

  • At twenty, she escaped the confines of her home where she was recuperating from one of

  • her many, and lifelong, bouts of illness to join the Carmelite order of nuns.

  • But once there, she balked at the superficiality and high society life of constant visits and

  • fancy food.

  • She began to live out the reformed Church's rededication to faith and good works, being

  • extremely strict in her practice.

  • She was a proponent of self-flagellation ceremonies--self-flagellation being the act of hitting one's self with

  • a whip in imitation of Christ's suffering at the cross.

  • And she became an inspiration particularly after church leaders had her write down her

  • spiritual experiences in several books that have now become Counter-Reformation classics,

  • such as Way of Perfection and The Book of Foundations.

  • At the same time, she went about founding newdiscalceate” (shoeless or barefoot)

  • Carmelite religious orders, restoring austerity and strictness to religious life.

  • The Council of Trent had also issued a statement about art, advising that it needed to connect

  • with ordinary people, including the poor.

  • The aim was not to produce subtle or erudite symbolism but to strike emotions, inducing

  • awe and evoking the power and majesty of the divine.

  • [[TV St Peters Square]] Gian Lorenzo Bernini produced such effects,

  • for example in the piazza in front of St. Peter's Basilica.

  • It features massed columns, which produce a dramatic setting for papal ritual.

  • Protestants had smashed ornate statuary of saints and the holy family and instead created

  • simple, unadorned places of worship.

  • But Catholics embraced majestic religious interiors, enhancing religious figures through

  • the use of light and shade in paintings of Jesus, angels, saints, and the royalty surrounding

  • the divine-- All of which were part of a new style called

  • baroque.

  • Did the world just open?

  • Is there a tiny little baby Jesus dressed up fancy back there?

  • Indeed, it is the Infant of Prague, or at least a three dollar recreation of it...

  • So you can see here, this baby Jesus is in a very fancy dress, and I...listen...if I

  • were a tiny baby Jesus, I would wear this fancy dress, but if you've read the gospels,

  • you'll know that like, this is not how tiny baby Jesus dressed.

  • It is, however, super baroque, emphasizing the majesty of the divine.