Book unique! Who but God could produce that type, that idea of perfection, equally exclusive and original? He died the object of the wrath of the Jewish priests, and of the contempt of the nation, and abandoned and denied by his own disciples. I shall be abandoned of all the world. My chief disciples will deny me at the commencement of my punishment. I shall be left to the wicked. But then, divine justice being satisfied, original sin being expiated by my sufferings, the bond of man to God will be renewed, and my death will be the life of my disciples.
Then they will be more strong without me than with me; for they shall see me rise again. I shall ascend to the skies, and I shall send to them from heaven a Spirit who will instruct them. The Spirit of the Cross will enable them to understand my gospel. In fine, they will believe it; they will preach it; and they will convert the world.
Is it the lifetime of a man? No: it is a war, a long combat, of three hundred years, commenced by the apostles, and continued by their successors and by succeeding generations of Christians. In this conflict, all the kings and all the forces of the earth were arrayed on one side.
Upon the other, I see no army but a mysterious energy, individuals scattered here and there, in all parts of the globe, having no other rallying sign than a common faith in the mysteries of the cross. His disciples were armed with it. The Christ,' they said, God, has died for the salvation of men. On the one side, we see rage and all the furies of hatred and violence; on the other, there are gentleness, moral courage, infinite resignation.
For three hundred years, spirit struggled against the brutality of sense, conscience against despotism, the soul against the body, virtue against all the vices. The blood of Christians flowed in torrents. They died kissing the hand which slew them. The soul alone protested, while the body surrendered itself to all tortures.
Everywhere Christians fell, and everywhere they triumphed. My armies have forgotten me even while living, as the Carthaginian army forgot Hannibal. Such is our power! A single battle lost crushes us, and adversity scatters our friends. Such is the history of the invasion and conquest of the world by Christianity; such is the power of the God of the Christians; and such is the perpetual miracle of the progress of the faith, and of the government of his Church. Nations pass away, thrones crumble; but the Church remains. What is, then, the power which has protected this Church, thus assailed by the furious billows of rage and the hostility of ages?
Whose is the arm, which, for eighteen hundred years, has protected the Church from so many storms which have threatened to ingulf it? But on what did we rest the creations of our genius? Upon force. Jesus Christ alone founded his empire upon love; and, at this hour, millions of men would die for him. Where is the character which has not yielded, vanquished by obstacles? Where is the individual who has never been governed by circumstances or places; who has never succumbed to the influences of the times; who has never compounded with any customs or passions?
Napoleon: A Political Life
From the first day to the last, he is the same, always the same; majestic and simple; infinitely firm, and infinitely gentle. Such is Christianity, -- the only religion which destroys sectional prejudices; the only one which proclaims the unity and the absolute brotherhood of the whole human family; the only one which is purely spiritual; in fine, the only one which assigns to all, without distinction, for a true country, the bosom of the Creator, God.
Christ proved that he was the Son of the Eternal by his disregard of time. All his doctrines signify one only and the same thing, -- eternity.
Napoléon ( film) - Wikipedia
He commands with authority, that we should believe them, -- giving no other reason than those tremendous words, I am God. What an abyss he creates by that declaration between himself' and all the fabricators of religion! What audacity, what sacrilege, what blasphemy, if it were not true! I say more: The universal triumph of an affirmation of that kind, if the triumph were not really that of God himself, would be a plausible excuse, and the proof of atheism. From whence do I come? Human life is a mystery in its origin, its organization, and its end. In man and out of man, in Nature, every thing is mysterious.
And can one wish that religion should not be mysterious? The creation and the destiny of the world are an unfathomable abyss, as also are the creation and destiny of each individual. Christianity at least does not evade these great questions; it meets them boldly: and our doctrines are a solution of them for every one who believes. One finds, in meditating upon it, that which one experiences in contemplating the heavens.
The gospel is not a book: it is a living being, with an action, a power, which invades every thing that opposes its extension. Not only is our mind absorbed; it is controlled: and the soul can never go astray with this book for its guide. Once master of our spirit, the faithful gospel loves us. God even is our friend, our father, and truly our God. The mother has no greater care for the infant whom she nurses.
With an empire so absolute, he has but one single end, -- the spiritual melioration of individuals, the purity of the conscience, the union to that which is true, the holiness of the soul.
He lights up the flames of a love which prevails over every other love. The founders of other religions never conceived of this mystical love, which is the essence of Christianity, and is beautifully called charity. In every attempt to affect this thing, viz. So that Christ's greatest miracle undoubtedly is the reign of charity. God forbid that I should form any comparison between the enthusiasm of the soldier and Christian charity, which are as unlike as their cause!
WRITINGS BY THE AUTHOR:
I do, indeed, possess the secret of this magical power which lifts the soul; but I could never impart it to any one. None of my generals ever learned it from me. Nor have I the means of perpetuating my name and love for me in the hearts of men, and to effect these things without physical means. Helena, now that I am alone, chained upon this rock, who fights and wins empires for me? Where are my friends? Yes: two or three, whom your fidelity immortalizes, you share, you console, my exile. Her father, Nicolas, was to become a well-connected Baron who once hosted Napoleon and Josephine at his hotel.
Her marriage was not to be a long one. Clicquot a widowed mother in charge of the Clicquot business holdings, which included a stake in a vineyard as well as a wine-making operation. She was not an overnight success. However, under Mme. Undaunted, she focused on methods of production. With the assistance of her loyal cellar-man, Mme.
During the second bottle fermentation, which gives champagne its fizz, Mme. Clicquot placed the bottles at an upside-down angle in racks and rotated them at regular intervals for several weeks. The yeast collected in the neck of a bottle and was removed. The bottle was then topped off with a bit more wine and re-corked.
FURTHER READINGS ABOUT THE AUTHOR
The final product was the crisp beverage to which we are accustomed. Although now automated, essentially the same method is used still today. Thanks to Mme. Undeniably, princes, whose existence is fixed in the memory as an image of order and of power, as the ideal of force and beauty: such princes were no ordinary men. They themselves have never raised their pretensions so high.
As for me, I recognize the gods, and these great men, as beings like myself. They have performed a lofty part in their times, as I have done. Nothing announces them divine. On the contrary, there are numerous resemblances between them and myself,—foibles and errors which ally them to me and to humanity. Every thing in him astonishes me. His spirit overawes me, and his will confounds me.
Between him and whoever else in the world there is no possible term of comparison. He is truly a being by himself. His ideas and his sentiments, the truths which he announces, his manner of convincing, are not explained either by human organization or by the nature of things. Here I see nothing human. His religion is a revelation from an intelligence which certainly is not that of man. There is there a profound originality which has created a series of words and of maxims before unknown. Jesus borrowed nothing from our science. One can absolutely find nowhere, but in him alone, the imitation or the example of his life.
He is not a philosopher, since he advances by miracles; and, from the commencement, his disciples worshiped him. He persuaded them far more by an appeal to the heart than by any display of method and of logic. Neither did he impose upon them any preliminary studies, or any knowledge of letters.
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All his religion consists in believing. Also he has nothing to do but with the soul; and to that alone he brings his gospel. The soul is sufficient for him, as he is sufficient for the soul. Before him, the soul was nothing. Matter and time were the masters of the world. At his voice, every thing returns to order.
Science and philosophy become secondary. The soul has reconquered its sovereignty. All the scholastic scaffolding falls, as an edifice ruined, before one single word,—faith. With what authority does he teach men to pray! He imposes his belief; and no one, thus far, has been able to contradict him: first, because the gospel contains the purest morality; and also because the doctrine which it contains of obscurity is only the proclamation and the truth of that which exists where no eye can see, and no reason can penetrate. Christ is that bold voyager.
What is their response? Where is the man of good sense who has never learned any thing from the system of metaphysics; ancient or modern, which is not truly a vain and pompous ideology, without any connection with our domestic life, with our passions? Unquestionably, with skill in thinking, one can seize the key of the philosophy of Socrates and Plato. But, to do this, it is necessary to be a metaphysician; and moreover, with years of study, one must possess special aptitude.
But good sense alone, the heart, an honest spirit, are sufficient to comprehend Christianity. The Christian religion is neither ideology nor metaphysics, but a practical rule which directs the actions of man, corrects him, counsels him, and assists him in all his conduct.
The Bible contains a complete series of facts and of historical men, to explain time and eternity, such as no other religion has to offer. If it is not the true religion, one is very excusable in being deceived; for every thing in it is grand, and worthy of God.
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I search in vain in history to find the similar to Jesus Christ, or any thing which can approach the gospel. Neither history, nor humanity, nor the ages, nor nature, offer me any thing with which I am able to compare it or to explain it.
ISBN 13: 9781142300173
Here every thing is extraordinary. The more I consider the gospel, the more I am assured that there is nothing there which is not beyond the march of events, and above the human mind. Even the impious themselves have never dared to deny the sublimity of the gospel, which inspires them with a sort of compulsory veneration. What happiness that book procures for those who believe it I What marvels those admire there who reflect upon it!
The spirit which binds these words together is a divine cement, which now reveals the sense, and again vails it from the mind. Each phrase has a sense complete, which traces the perfection of unity, and the profundity of the whole. Book unique!
Who but God could produce that type, that idea of perfection, equally exclusive and original? He died the object of the wrath of the Jewish priests, and of the contempt of the nation, and abandoned and denied by his own disciples. My chief disciples will deny me at the commencement of my punishment.
I shall be left to the wicked. But then, divine justice being satisfied, original sin being expiated by my sufferings, the bond of man to God will be renewed, and my death will be the life of my disciples. Then they will be more strong without me than with me; for they shall see me rise again. I shall ascend to the skies, and I shall send to them from heaven a Spirit who will instruct them. The Spirit of the Cross will enable them to understand my gospel.
In fine, they will believe it; they will preach it; and they will convert the world. Is it the lifetime of a man? No: it is a war, a long combat, of three hundred years, commenced by the apostles, and continued by their successors and by succeeding generations of Christians. In this conflict, all the kings and all the forces of the earth were arrayed on one side. Upon the other, I see no army but a mysterious energy, individuals scattered here and there, in all parts of the globe, having no other rallying sign than a common faith in the mysteries of the cross.
His disciples were armed with it. On the one side, we see rage and all the furies of hatred and violence; on the other, there are gentleness, moral courage, infinite resignation.