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 Forecasting America's Destiny ... and the World's


Generational Dynamics Web Log for 3-Jan-2011
3-Jan-11 News -- Britain celebrates the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible

Web Log - January, 2011

3-Jan-11 News -- Britain celebrates the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible

Home prices expected to fall another 30%

Britain celebrates the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible

The year 2011 marks the 400th anniversary of the completion of the King James Bible, possibly the most influential English language book in history.

Psalm 23, King James Version
Psalm 23, King James Version

In his 2011 New Year message, the Archbishop of Canterbury said:

"When we try to make sense of our lives and of who we really are, it helps to have a strongly-defined story, a big picture of some kind in the background. As the King James Bible took hold of the imaginations of millions of people in the English-speaking world, it gave them just that - a big picture, a story in which their lives made sense."

An article in the Independent has collected together some of the common English language phrases that originally appeared in the 1611 edition of the King James Bible:

"Today it is a commonplace to note that the words and rhythms of the KJB and its source translations shape the speech of countless millions who never open a bible or enter a church. Somehow, the language of the 1611 version never falls from grace (Galatians 5.4) even if its message falls on stony ground (Mark 4.5). In a secular age where ignorance of religion goes from strength to strength (Psalms 84.7) among lovers of filthy lucre (1 Timothy 3.8) who only want to eat, drink and be merry (Luke 12.19), we know for a certainty (Joshua 23.13) that these resonant words endure as a fly in the ointment (Ecclesiastes 10.1) and a thorn in the flesh (2 Corinthians 12.7) of the powers that be (Romans 13.1). They can still set the teeth on edge (Jeremiah 31.29) of those who try to worship God and Mammon (Matthew 6.24). But does this ancient book, proof that there is no new thing under the sun (Ecclesiastes 1.9), now cast its pearls before swine (Matthew 7.6), and act as a voice crying in the wilderness (Luke 3.4) – a drop in a bucket (Isaiah 40.15) of unbelief, no longer a sign of the times (Matthew 16.3) but a verbal stumbling-block (Leviticus 19.14) or else all things to all men (1 Corinthians 9.22) while the blind lead the blind (Matthew 15.14)?"

From the point of view of Generational Dynamics, the King James Bible was the product of a generational Awakening era. Awakening eras are those spectacular times of new ideas and new revolutions that appear midway between two crisis wars. Important Awakening eras in world history include the golden age of ancient Greece, the ministry of Jesus Christ, and the life of Mohammed and birth of Islam. (See Generational Dynamics: Great Awakenings in World History.)

When King James took the throne of England in 1603, England was just recovering from the previous crisis war with Spain, which had climaxed with the failed attack of the 'Invincible' Spanish Armada in 1588. The war was seen as confrontation between the Catholics and the heretical Protestants, and the Armada attack was strongly supported by the Catholics and seen as the will of God.

In the generational Recovery era that followed the disastrous collapse of the Armada attack, both sides concluded that the English victory was through divine intervention. In England, this resulted in the strengthening of the doctrine of divine right of Kings. The King would be second in authority only to God, and certainly not second in authority to the Pope in Rome.

King James particularly adopted this doctrine. But as always happens, the kids growing up after a generational crisis war rebel against the austere rules and institutions set up by the survivors, who only wish to guarantee that no such war will ever happen again. This leads to a "generation gap," such as happened in America and Europe in the 1960s, and in Iran in the last two years.

In 1603, this generation gap led to a remarkable event known as the Millenary Petition. Hundreds of Puritan reformist clergy expressed their outrage at what they called "popisms" -- rituals and procedures that too closely resembled the practices of the Pope and the Catholic Church.

At the heart of the political dispute were arguments over the best translation of the Bible into English. There were several translations available, including one favored by the Puritans and one favored by King James and the traditionalists.

In order to resolve the political dispute, the King created a committee of Puritan and traditional religious leaders, the Hampton Court Conference of January 1604. It soon became clear that none of the reforms requested by the Puritans would be granted. This led to the flight of Puritans to Amsterdam three years later, and after that to the migration to North America.

But there was one major reform that everyone at the Conference agreed on: An authoritative version of the Bible was required, something in every day English that anyone could understand. This led to the commissioning of a new Bible translation, resulting in the King James Bible in 1611.

The conflict over the doctrine of divine right of Kings did not go away, however, as Parliament was demanding greater power over taxation and policy. Disagreements between the King and Parliament led to England's next crisis war, the bloody English Civil War (also called the "Puritan Revolution") of the 1640s, climaxing in the beheading of King Charles I in 1649.

The monarchy was abolished, and England had no King until the monarchy was restored in 1660 with Charles' son, Charles II, as King, but with vastly reduced powers. The divine right of Kings remained in name only until the next generational Awakening era climaxed in 1689 with the Glorious Revolution. The relationship between the monarchy and Parliament was finally sealed for good in the next crisis war, the War of the Spanish Succession, of the 1700s decade.

In generational theory, great ideas are launched during Awakening eras, and either established or extinguished during subsequent Crisis eras. The Awakening era of the 1600s and 1610s decades was one of the most important in English history, resulting in the King James Bible and the Puritan Revolution. It was also important in American history, because it led to the Puritan migration to North America, and to the rejection of the monarchy that created the United States of America.

Role of English Catholics in Armada attack

While researching this report, I came across the article from the Catholic New Advent encyclopedia on the Spanish Armada attack on England in 1588. The article describes how Catholics throughout Europe supported the Spanish Armada attack against the hated Protestant Queen Elizabeth. But the article contains the following paragraph:

"There is no doubt that all the exiles for religion at that time shared Allen's sentiments, but not so the Catholics in England. They had always been the most conservative of English parties. The resentment they felt at being persecuted led them to blame the queen's ministers, but not to question her right to rule. To them the great power of Elizabeth was evident, the forces and intentions of Spain were unknown quantities. They might, should, and did resist until complete justification was set before them, and this was in fact never attempted. Much, for instance, as we know of the Catholic clergy then laboring in England, we cannot find that any of them used religion to advance the cause of the Armada. Protestant and Catholic contemporaries alike agree that the English Catholics were energetic in their preparations against it."

According to another source, an English Catholic nobleman, Viscount Montague, led the defense against the Armada.

In other words, the supposedly fanatical, ideological English Catholics, at war with the heretical Protestants, sided with their nation against the Catholics.

I've previously mentioned that German-Americans overwhelmingly sided with America against the Nazis in World War II.

(Another example is that millions of Catholics go to Church every Sunday, but they still use birth control at home.)

We should be careful before we condemn all Muslims who are citizens of America or Europe. These people are going to be on our loyal allies, and we're going to need their help when the time comes.

Additional links

Home price index versus long-term trend (WSJ)
Home price index versus long-term trend (WSJ)

Home prices will have to fall another 30% from their current values, according to an analysis of the Case-Shiller home price index by Peter Schiff. Historically, US home prices have increased an average of 3.35% per year, just a little bit more than the rate of inflation. But since 1998, home prices have risen an average of 19.2% per year, putting them way above the long-term trend line, as shown by the adjoining graph. Home prices would have to decline 20% just to get back to the historic trend line, but Schiff says they're likely to overshoot the trend line, and fall by 30%. (This is an application of the Law of Mean Reversion.) According to Schiff, if the government hadn't intervened in the housing market, and had allowed prices to fall, then a lot more people would be able to afford homes now, and the real estate crisis would end sooner. Wall Street Journal (Access)

Bubble real estate prices in Beijing are putting homes out of reach of college graduates. It used to be that college graduates with degrees in English, international trade and computer science were in high demand. But now supply has surpassed demand, and the average monthly wage of a recent graduate from a top Chinese university is around $400 per month -- just enough to buy half a square meter of an apartment in downtown Beijing. CNN

Anarchist and left-wing violence are on the rise in Europe. Time

Dozens of Coptic Christians clashed with Egyptian riot police in Cairo on Sunday, following the Saturday bomb attack at a church in Alexandria that killed 21 people. Coptic Christians will be celebrating Christmas on January 6. Bloomberg

The six-month rotating presidency of the European Union has just been assumed by Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, whom some call the last dictator in Europe. Orban has vowed to solve the "Roma problem" in Europe, but Hungary itself has a bit Roma Gypsies problem, with discrimination and numerous hate crimes directed against the Roma Gypsies. Spiegel

German officials suspect that mosques in Berlin are becoming the targets of arson and hate crimes. Spiegel

(Comments: For reader comments, questions and discussion, see the 3-Jan-11 News -- Britain celebrates the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible thread of the Generational Dynamics forum. Comments may be posted anonymously.) (3-Jan-2011) Permanent Link
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