Primitive culture: researches into the development of by Edward Burnett Tylor

By Edward Burnett Tylor

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It is the trust and faith of the heart alone that make both God and an idol. If your faith and trust are right, then your God is the true one. Conversely, where your trust is false and wrong, there you do not have the true God. ) Whether a trust is right or false depends on whether the ‘object’ of this trust is the true God. But the fact that an object can be called ‘God’ is always related to a person, and, more precisely, to that person’s trust. 34 martin luther Thus Luther’s theology must be called ‘existential’ in so far as he focuses not only on the truth of propositions but also on the truth of the persons who hold true propositions.

Although The Prince allows that “it cannot be called virtue” to perform “treacherous, merciless, and irreligious” deeds as had Agathocles the Sicilian who gained power “but not glory” (VIII), Machiavelli steadfastly maintains that politics, if it were nothing more than the practice of Christian moral virtue, would not in fact be politics. In essence, the power of (Christian) religion, including its theological or scriptural significance, must be wholly subordinated to the religion of power. What power demands of political virtù is moral flexibility, not moral probity.

MLN Italian Issue Supplement 119: 224–46. Colish, M. 1999. “Republicanism, Religion, and Machiavelli’s Savonarolan Moment”. Journal of the History of Ideas 60: 597–616. De Grazia, S. 1989. Machiavelli in Hell. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Dietz, M. 1986. “Trapping the Prince: Machiavelli and the Politics of Deception”. American Political Science Review 80: 777–99. Kahn, V. 1994. Machiavellian Rhetoric: From the Counter-Reformation to Milton. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

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