Ancient Hoplites

Ancient Hoplites

Monday, December 1, 2014

The True Parallel To Sparta: Christendom

This month, I'm delighted to welcome W. Lindsay Wheeler back to "Sparta Reconsidered" with a new -- highly thought-provoking - guest blog.  He would welcome feed-back, so don't hesitate to contact him at the email address provided at the end of the article. 

The True Parellel to Sparta is Christendom

Far too many modern textbooks put Athens at the start and center of our cultural understanding. Skipping over two thousand years, we go, as it were, from Athenian democracy straight to modern civilization. But there is a bump in the road, the English Classicist J. Burnet, for example, notes that “…The Platonist tradition underlies the whole of western civilization”. (93) The Platonist tradition had nothing to do with Athenian democracy; Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, all, excoriated democracy. That being the case, the question then becomes where did Plato’s teachings arise? From Sparta as Socrates points out. 

Many modern textbooks equate Sparta with dictatorship and totalitarianism with a number of academics conjoining Sparta with Nazi Germany.

Nazi Germany?!?!  

If Sparta provoked Socrates and Plato, then what is the true parallel of Sparta should be in line with the Platonist tradition, right? The real parallel of Sparta is Christendom! *

The most glaring characteristic shared by both was serfdom of the helots in both Crete and Sparta and the feudalism exhibited by most of Europe. Just like in India, these Indo-Europeans created caste societies of soldiers, workers, tradesmen, priests, royalty and aristocracy.

There is a continuation of Indo-European life and practice from the Doric Greeks of Crete and Sparta, thru Rome, to Christendom. “Christendom was all but conterminous with the Roman Empire.” (Urquhart) Roman laws, ideas, institutions, practices were carried over into Christendom.

From her early history, Rome and her culture have been influenced and directed by Doric customs for both Cicero and Plutarch point to the tribes of the Sabines as bringing Doric (Spartan) Culture to bear upon City upon the Tiber, during the earliest kingly reigns: the idea of mixed government of King, Senate, and assemblies, the regard for religious involvement (auguries), and military customs and dress. There is a continuum from Sparta to Rome and then from Rome to Christendom.

At the Fall of the Roman Empire, Europe fell into a state of war brought on by the countless invasions of migratory nations. This state of Nature forced all nations to create, naturally and organically, into the warrior caste system which mirrored Sparta, of King, Aristocracy and commons. As Diachercus of Messina labeled Sparta’s government a Tripolitcus, many European governments unconsciously replicated a tripartite government system of royalty, aristocracy and commons. The crucible of Nature, hence the Natural Law, worked its designs unconsciously upon European people. This same pattern/paradigm can be seen with the Spartans, the early Roman “Republicanism” of the Roman kings, and the monarchies of Europe.

Another grand parallel is that the Doric Greeks, the Romans and Christian Europe were heavily intertwined with religion. Spartan and Roman kings and later Roman Emperors along with other Roman office holders had religious duties. Sparta and Rome were both very cognizant not only of Divine Providence but also Divine Involvement. Religion played such an integral part in Rome that their constitutional law was divided between two spheres, the res divina and the res publica. Thru St. Augustine, the conceptual duality of the spheres,  res divina and res publica inherent in Roman constitutional law formed the political order of Christendom, i.e. Throne and Altar:

Two there are, august emperor, by which this world is principally ruled: the consecrated authority of bishops and the royal power.” (Mastnak quoting Pope Gelasius I c. 494 A. D., pg 2)

The idea of Church and State formed an integral whole from Sparta, thru Rome, to Christendom.

The Altar was Roman Catholicism. And here too, not only did Sparta lay the groundwork for Hellenism that created the environment for Christianity’s birth and growth through Plato but also, thru Plato, formed the consciousness, intellectualism and dogma of Roman Catholicism. In his book Plato’s Gift to Christianity, The Gentile Preparation For and The Making of The Christian Faith, Prof. Ehrlich all but names Plato as the founder of Christianity. Cochrane observes that there are “…undoubted affinities between Christianity and Platonism.” (pg. 376) As Rome Hellenized (Horace), Christianity in turn Hellenized and itself, in turn, took up Roman clothing accoutrements, laws, titles and customs thus creating Roman Catholicism.

Christendom was a Catholic theocracy, and the English Anglican divine, W. R. Inge, writes that
“If we had to choose one man as the founder of Catholicism as a theocratic system, we should have to name neither Augustine nor St. Paul, still less Jesus Christ, but Plato, who in the Laws sketches out with wonderful prescience the condition for such a polity, and the form which it would be compelled to take.” (26)

Nature created the warrior cultures of Europe. They did this by the natural effervescence of environment and racial proclivities (Dumezil’s trifunctionality) and second by reinforcing those proclivities by consciously copying and imitating the Natural Order, the Cosmos that is embedded in Plato’s writing down of Doric philosophy. The Natural Law, found in the Dorian’s creation of philosophy, formed the basis of Western Culture’s religion, ethics, contemplative thought and the order of their societies, consciously and subconsciously.

The Sparta/Rome/Christendom/Christianity continuum was all formed by Nature and God. Western Civilization has a continuous trajectory from classical times to the Throne and Altar of Christendom. And this belies the grandest equivalent between Sparta and Christendom, the telos of these societies was directed toward spiritual objectives—theosis for the Dorians (Wheeler) and salvation for the Christian, thus the authoritarianism of both these societies. On the other hand, the whole modern world is from the imagination and will of mortal, fallen man not only divorced from Nature but from God, all based on hatred. That the historical event of Christendom doesn’t even touch the minds of modern academia and to see all of modern academia miss this so obvious correspondence is scandalous.

If the German National Socialists were channeling the whole of Sparta, it woulda/shoulda recreated Christendom but they were egalitarians, having a great hatred for royalty, aristocracy and the Roman Catholic Church. Hitler was a demagogue. Where else have demagogues appeared? Erik von Kuenhelt-Leddihn traces Nazism to Athens and its democracy where demagogues lived and ruled.†

There were no demagogues in Sparta. Sparta is not only the foundation of the Throne but of the Altar of Christendom as well. Sparta’s true parallel is Christendom.

W. Lindsay Wheeler, November 12, 2014


* Christendom: “In its historical sense, the term usually refers to the medieval and early modern period, during which the Christian world represented a geopolitical power juxtaposed with both paganism and especially the military threat of the Muslim world.” (Wikipedia) For this purpose, from the Edict of Constantine to the French Revolution, where the Roman Catholic Church, Monarchy  and the classical republics such as Venice, existed as a unified civilization of Europe.

† “The modern totalitarian parties are all fundamentally ‘democratic’.” (Kuehnelt, 246)  In the anakylosis, Socrates and Plato both said that dictatorship comes out of democracy. “It was German liberalism and German bourgeois democracy which had turned National Socialist”. (ibid, 262)


Burnet, J. (1924) Philosophy. In R. W. Livingstone, (Ed.) The Legacy of Greece. Oxford, England:  Clarendon Press.

Cochrane, Charles Norris (1940) Christianity and Classical Culture, A Study of Thought and Action From Augustus to Augustine. NY: Oxford University Press: 1980 University Press paperback.

Inge, W. R. (1924) Religion. In R. W. Livingstone, (Ed.) The Legacy of Greece, Oxford, England: Clarendon Press.

Kuehnelt-Leddihn, Erik von [1952](1993) Liberty or Equality. Front Royal, Virginia: Christendom Press.

Mastnak, Tomaž (2002) Crusading Peace: Christendom, the Muslim World, and Western Political Order. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.

Urquhart, F. (1908). Christendom. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved November 10, 2014 from New Advent:

Wheeler, W. Lindsay (2011) Macrocosm/Microcosm in Doric Thought. Self-published:


  1. I will never forget this incident. My natural dad took me on a trip to Crete where a guide at Knossos told our group that Cretans are Dorians. That spurred me to read a lot of Classical literature along with my research on what is a republic. I then found out that Crete and Sparta were brothers, they were kinsmen all practicing the same tradition and customs.

    So some time later I found a Cretan forum called Creternity. I mentioned that us Cretans are related to the Spartans and how great that was.

    The first words out of their mouths were "Those Nazis".

    I was dumbfounded. I was quite taken aback. The Spartans are "Those Nazis"? And then here are Doric Greeks who had no idea they were Dorians and who couldn't fathom that they were related to the Spartans. They even went to the length of finding a picture of Hitler and superimposing my face onto the picture. They thought it was hilarious fun.


    Innumerable and Incontestable and thoroughgoing Damage. That the ancestors of the Classical Dorians, not only so disconnected from their heritage and patrimony (their heritage extended to only the fight of liberation from the Turk but then consisted of only "Minoan Crete"),that they had such a blasted idea of their ancestors that did so much for Western Culture and Christianity.


    What the heck is going on in Academia and in our schools that the first thing out of their mouths is "Those Nazis". What damage has been done? And is still going on when modern academics cojoin Regime to both Sparta and Nazi Germany. "The Sparta and Nazi regimes" is a phrase one finds a lot.

    My hatred and disgust for it all knows no bounds. That our Graeco-Roman heritage has been so fatally disfigured and damaged and sullied. The hate and vitriol that has been poured upon these glorious people who sacrificed so much. 300 men went to their deaths for people they didn't even know and for this--they are slandered as "Those Nazis".

    I don't think so. As you have torn my forefathers to shreds--I will shred your whole modern world to shreds with the Truth and Glory of Sparta.

  2. Marion Baginski, in his article, who refutes the particular concept of "Judeo-Christianity" writes about St. Justin the Martyr

    Their ideas could serve as beacons of truth just as much as could the inspired writings of theOld Testament Hebrews. Those who lived according to the Logos, even before Christ,were Christians. In the Old Testament it was the Logos who was revealed as God, because the transcendent Heavenly Father could not thus speak to man.

    Justin wrote in Apology:"We have been taught that Christ is the first-born of God, and we have declared abovethat He is the Word [or reason] of whom all mankind partakes. Those who livedreasonably [with the Word] are Christians, even though they have been called atheists.For example: among the Greeks, Socrates, Heraclitus and men like them; among the barbarians [non-Greeks], Abraham...and many others whose actions and names wenow decline to recount, because we know it would be tedious.

    "Christianity, seen through Justin Martyr's writings, takes on a 'cosmic' breadth: "I both boast and strive with all my strength to be found a Christian...Whatever thingswere rightly said by any man, belong to us Christians. For next to God we worship andlove the Word, who is from the unbegotten and ineffable God, since He also becameman for our sakes, that by sharing in our sufferings He might also bring us healing. For all those writers were able to see reality darkly, through the seed of the implanted Wordwithin them." (2 Apology).

    Socrates and Heraclitus were Christians before Christ. Socrates and Heraclitus were practicing the philosophy of the Doric Greeks. The Doric Greeks, the Spartans, were Christians before Christ. Along with the Seven Sages of Greece, Plato and Socrates met personally with Spartiates and Cretans, and were impressed their character and teachings that they followed/imitated them.

  3. The blog post is an abstract for a book. I neither have the funds or expertise or know-how to write. That is for someone out there to do. It is also a chapter in my Part II of The Case of the Barefoot Socrates.

    Aristotle's work Politics was translated into Latin c. 1250 A.D. The mixed government that Aristotle talks about is the example of Crete and Sparta. Also in that same century did Venice and England move to esablish mixed government. Is there a correlation? This needs to be checked out, confirmed or denied. But it looks like there are parallels there! Was there a direct connection? It seems that Sparta had a huge influence both politically and religiously and may have influenced the direction of Catholic polities in the 13th century.

  4. When you speak of Western Civilization ,Northwestern Europe is only meant which roughly corresponds to the old Carolingian realm. If cultural borrowings make people a apart of some "mega civilization" then most of East Asia should be included as part of Indian civilization. Plato was also influenced by Near eastern,specifically Semitic, ideas concerning Theology and Cosmology, I suppose that would make us a part of Near Eastern civilization? What is actually described, very selectively I have to say, is a cultural continuum. This continuum did not just spread to Northwestern Europe but to Persia, Russia; the Arab-Semitic world is also part of this continuum. The article speaks of the Dorian and Roman influence that made "Western" civilization(Carolingian culture), but yet what about the Germanic and Hebrew influence? If anything these are probably the greatest influences especially after the Protestant reformation which really tore Northwestern Europe from that Catholic-Orthodox culture(France is always in a tough position because of its Latin Mediterranean and Continental Germanic heritages, but its very interesting that some Romans seceded and created a the short-lived Gallic Empire even back then).

  5. I define Western Civilization with Paramenides principle of non-contradiction. This principle is a characteristic of Western Thought. Whereas Eastern thought is syncretistic, Western thought is linear and in black-n-white.

    The idea of the Trinity, which is theology and cosmology is strictly Dorian and no one else's. The division of their society in three's from the most ancient of times signifies their apprehension of Trifunctionality. Trifunctionality moved in their theological and cosmological thought. Plato captured this. I point to my linked paper "Macrocosm/Microcosm in Doric Thought" that provides the evidence. The division of the Romans into three tribes has got to be the strongest proof of Dorian influence in ancient Roman history. No one could make that up. The dividing things into three was a Doric custom.

    The Protestant Reformation marks the beginning of the Judaizing of Western Culture. From there, a thing called "Hebraic Politica" arose which attacked the Indo-European Cultural/Civilizational Warrior Order. From there Western Civilization has fallen apart. This is why we see the attacks and denigration of Sparta. Both Sparta and Christendom, the Old Order, is on a hate list. This is why we see the deconstruction of the Graeco-Roman heritage in the acronym "DWEMs" and the closing of Classical departments throughout the college and university systems.

    I have come to the conclusion that Europeans really don't know what it means to be European--they have lost their roots and their heritage and their religion.

  6. I should have linked to Marion Baginski's article: Judeochristianity.

    I am very aware of cultural borrowings across the Near East and the Mediterranean. I have read Cyrus H. Gordon's interesting book, The Common Background of Greek and Hebrew Civilizations. The angelology and much of the Genesis account in the OT is actually from Persia. King David had Cretan mercenaries and they would have influenced Hebrew society. If these were Mycenean Cretans or Dorian Cretans, I have no idea but it would be interesting to know what kind of Cretans they were. The phrase "Iron sharpens Iron" found in the OT is either from the Hittites or the Dorians. The Hebrews were not iron-workers. Neither were the Mycenean Greeks. The Hittites and the Dorians were. Phonecian capitalism and writing systems did influence the Greeks but that is not the same as making a continuum.

    Borrowings and transfers are not the sole reason for making a continuum because cultures do modify them. There is a core element that belongs to a culture/civilization which borrowing and transfers don't change. That is the defining element. Second, one must also take into account what a people consider themselves a part of.

    Another thing to be aware of is that both the Cretans and the Spartans established xenelasia. The Cretan in Plato's Laws remarks that the Cretan xenelasia prevented them from reading Homer. Homer was not read or known by the Cretans. That also has to be taken into account. If we wanted to look for a pure Greek culture, it would have to be found amongst the Dorians for a good picture of it. The Dorians accused the Ionians of "mediazing"; of taking on the customs of the Persians.

    On another note: German National Socialism was a carry over and a continuation of the "Los von Rome" mentality which was married to primitivism which sought to return to a primitive German society purified from Roman elements and Roman Law which was carried by the Holy Roman Empire element. German National Socialism rejected in a sense, in toto, Western Civilization and Western Culture, the common patrimony of all of Europe and was trying to "rewrite the book".

  7. Say what you will but the ancient Cosmotheasis of the Hellenes, the Romans, and many other European peoples, including those "primitive" Germanics, is not the same as that of Christendom, whether Byzantine or Western(Frankish). We polytheists, Latin and Hellenic, will never accept Byzantine or Frankish Christendom as part of our culture, we are enemies. Yes you are right the peoples of Europe have lost their roots thanks to institutionalized Nicene Christianity; blessed be the Gods that Byzantium has fallen and now the Frankish West also(Modern Capitalist or Medieval Christian).

  8. Anthony Harrigan in his article "Deconstructing Our Civilization" (Humanitas. Volume: 13. Issue: 1 Publication date: Spring 2000: Questia Online library) writes that there is a deliberate effort to suppress knowledge of our history, to eliminate our history as a controlling force in our country and civilization. He concludes that "As this process has advanced, the mental constitution of Westerners has been imprinted with desires and images that are a world apart from those that formed the mental constitution of our Christian ancestors.

    Here is an example from an abstract on a paper titled "Republican Freedom and the Rule of Law": At the core of republican thought, on Philip Pettit’s account, lies the conception of freedom as non-domination, as opposed to freedom as noninterference in the liberal sense.

    Many people think that "freedom" is connected to republicanism.

    And I know when I write about Sparta and authoritarianism, Western people turn up their noses and dismiss anything further. The traditional Western consciousness and understanding as been completely overturned.

    In the Laws, Megillus the Spartan clearly calls Sparta an autocracy. Amazingly, the article on "Authority" in the Dictionary of the History of Ideas (ed. Philip Wiener1968,1973) by Leonard Krieger, writes that the idea of authority, in the full range of meanings that have given it an integral intellectual life to the present, had its origins during the Roman Republic...

    For the Spartan and Roman republics, authority was a normal and operative concept. The authority of the family and in patriarchy undergirds the authority of the Spartan republic since the family is the seed of the state. The Spartans saw their state as one large family and it acted as such.

    True republicanism, classical, is enthused with authority schemes. True republicanism is not about freedom but about acheiving The Good as Plato states. Christians took the autoritas of Romanitas and transformed it for their own ways. Authority is part of our Graeco-Roman heritage.

    This blog post is about the beginnings of restoring our cultural heritage and patrimony. It is about recapturing our way of life. To live in harmony with our forefathers and give our patrimony unto our future so that Western Civilization may not disappear from the face of the earth. "The Faith is Europe". AND "Europe is the Faith".

  9. I think the Doric Greeks would disagree with you Ivan. Socrates was charged with atheism wasn't he? Doesn't Socrates undermine your case? Was Socrates polytheist?

    Isn't the three Gods of Christianity enough? You need more?

    I don't know but carved on the Temple of Delphi is the proberb "Nothing too much". The Dorians would also apply that theologicially. Second, the Natural Law says "The Rule of One is Best". Doesn't Polytheism break this natural law? For the Dorians, in "As above, so below", the natural law guides all things even Gods.

    Plato was a monotheist but also divided god into nous, demiurge and world soul. Plato talks that sovereignty is divided into three. Wouldn't this also exist in the heavens?

    In the Bible, many gods are recognized why would the God of the Bible be called "The Most High God". That phrase intimates that there are other gods. In the earlier texts there is a definite ambiguity there.

    Plutarch, who was a priest at Delphi, does a semantic evaluation of the word "Apollo" and says it means "Not many gods". The Spartans had many statues to deities in their city. So how to square the circle. What people may call "gods" may actually be spirits. There is One God but many spirits.

    St. Paul would not object to that who says there "Principalities and powers". These are spirits and demi-gods. We don't know a lot. But the Natural Law tells us a truth about all the spheres. The Spartans had three main gods and they rest, I believe, they called spirits, and that Socrates was guided by a personal daimon which became "guardian angels" in Christianity. The Natural Law teaches a Three in One God. That is a scientific truth. There are a multitude of principalities and powers which are demigods. There is nothing in Christianity that would deny that. One has to acknowledge nuances and a correct use of language. Not all spirits are gods. If you look at the pseudo-Aristotelian Virtues, which I think comes from the Spartans, says one has to have duty to God and to the Spirits. All truth and beauty belong in the Golden Mean. The Platonic(Dorian)/Christian Trinity is in the Golden Mean between strict monotheism and polytheism. It obeys the dictum "Nothing too much". Polytheism is an error and strict monotheism is an error. The Truth lies in the Golden Mean--and that is the Platonic/Christian Trinity. It was the Dorians thru their discovery of the Natural Law that came up with this concept and so it is strictly Indo-European.

  10. Sometimes, metaphorically, I feel a need to shoot myself. Why? Because things are so convoluted and confusing, it is beyond me; it is overpowering; situations are overwhelming.

    I should have read the article on "Authority" quoted earlier much longer. The article is long and quite difficult to plow thru so I only read the Roman section.

    I still have not finished reading the article, but I covered another two sections and the last of the two dealt with modernity. Leonard Krieger, who has written a pretty comprehensive and complete piece on authority, writes the concept and usage of authority """underwent change""" in the modern era.

    Right off the bat, the word "authority" has undergone huge changes in definition, conception, and applied goals and relationships. In the modern era which is Liberalism, liberals just connected authority to power and then opposed the New Mode that they created "freedom" as the antithesis to "authority"; thus making it into something it wasn't and could not be in Classical Antiquity!

    I just get so frustrated. Here you have European liberals, cook up new ideas, then change old concepts, to agree with their new ideas they cooked up and then run into Classical Antiquity and charge them with pseudo-crimes and whipped-up moral evils that didn't exist earlier.

    I can't believe this. You can't trust any book. You can't trust words anymore, you can't trust anything. Before one discusses anything now, one has to do a massive philological research just to anchor oneself in any type of conformity to reality. One has to spend massive amounts of time, and effort and research to wade thru gobbleydegook, gibberish, modern deformation of words and all sorts of chaos created by modernity. One has to sort the mess in order to arrive at just a beginning semblance of truth.

    The words, philosophy, republicanism, effeminacy and others have all been redefined by the modern age, now to the list I must add "authority".

    My conclusion is that everything is chaos. How to wade thru misrepresentation, misappropriation, stealing of words and concepts, propaganda, innuendo and false charges.

    Everything is politicized and so that means propaganda is the rule of the day. No one today has any true meaning of authority and what that entails in Classical Antiquity but then all sorts of characters charge the Spartans as "Those Nazis" for being "authoritarian" when they don't have a clue what it truly means. Krieger quotes Engels as saying "Revolution is the most authoritarian thing there is". But that is not the meaning for Classical Antiquity.

    Nothing is right. We are not being helped but the problem is being compounded daily without stop in every college classroom of today. And what article out there discusses authority in Sparta? So how can Sparta be charged with "totalitarianism"? Krieger points out that Rousseau and J. S. Mill, as liberals, changed the methodology of authority that makes it out to be totalitarianism or at the very least dictatorship. And then in their ideological battles in changing culture, they must take terms they created in the modern era and throw them back into Classical Antiquity.

    A warning to all: The word "authority" does NOT have the same meaning or relationships: THERE IS NO CONNECTION BETWEEN THE ANCIENT MODALITY OF AUTHORITY AND THE MODERN MEANINGS AND USAGES of authority.