Friday, January 1, 2010

St Bernard of Clairvaux

Ok - this has been nagging away inside my head for some time.

Why did Bernard of Clairvaux NOT go on Crusade.

Yes, he was busy whipping up support and shaming all and sundry into taking the Cross; he was closely associated with those who founded the Templars. And yet, to my limited knowledge, this man never stepped foot in the Holy Land - either as a pilgrim or crusader. Why?

Other notable Churchmen took up the pilgrim's staff - Adhemar of Puy is the most notable - and the entourages of the nobles of the First Crusade were chock full of ecclesiastics.

For a man who threw himself whole-heartedly behind the Crusading ideal - he is rather conspicuous in his absence.

He was 63 when he died in 1153 - however his age offered no hinderance to his constant travels throughout (modern-day) Europe drumming up support for the Crusades.

My question is: for one so fervant in his support - why did he not actively take the Cross??

1 comment:

paritosh said...

hello dear one ;beautifull indeed your interest in bernard !my feeling is he was a divided man ;hence the difficulty for any psycho biographer ;not that he was afraid of war for his own bodily security but he was consciouss of its let say inelegance ; he was a man of aesthetics before all ;his love of christ , mary and god was basically a devotion towards ultimate splendour and war is a crude and disgusting resort ;he did not accept to preach the crusade at first but finally accepted to obey to "his own lack of better resort in the collective context and pressures ";but true , he was born a family of nobles and soldiers and helped securing the foundation of the termplars ;to be a saint in catholic church does not mean one has attained omniscience etc ;unfortunately ;and yes his life is daughter of its time plus his own soul ;