The Power Struggle : An Attempt At Authoritative Assertion

922 Words Dec 13th, 2014 4 Pages
The Power Struggle: An Attempt at Authoritative Assertion
Through the 1400s, the Holy Roman Empire continued a six-century-long tradition of exercising its papal institutional powers and political powers over the European cultural arena that it had predominated. The intersection of wealth, power, and Church became so ostentatious, however, that some began to question the legitimacy of an institution that took to selling admission into heaven and to pricing salvation . As a figure and consolidator of power by the will of God, religion poses itself superior to and in opposition to other authoritative systems that may make claims at their own rights to rule. Religion challenges other powerful institutions and instigates authority in an attempt to assert its own dominance. As the Church pushes, however, political and authoritative figures exert an opposing force to counteract impending defeat and establish their own power. The didactic that evolves between religion’s challenge and authority’s response catalyzes a conflict of power that threatens the integrity of either system and forces one or the other to submit, or to push harder.
In 1517, Martin Luther, one of the most famous reformational thinkers of the era, posted his 95 Theses on the doors at Wittenberg. In an address to the German nobility, Luther challenged the upper echelons of the Church, referring to the work of clerics as “the craft and deceit of the devil” and to the powers of religion as “walls of straw and…
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