The Cathar View: The Mysterious Legacy Of Montsgur: Over Twenty Visionary Contributions (The View Series)
Publish Date: 2012-11-15
The thirteenth-century Cathars slaughtered at Montsgur in 1244 today offer an alternative to mainstream Christianity that for many integrates better both with ancient pagan traditions and with modern 'new age' attitudes than does the Church. They are used to focus a sense of local pride and independence in the Languedoc of France and they still offer a symbol of largely nonviolent resistance against persecution and near-genocide. While they are the source for substantial studies into reincarnation, they also give us extraordinary detail to help us understand mediaeval life and the horror of the Inquisition. Their spirituality and what it stood for remain alive in countless exemplary ways. It is easy for the picture to become contradictory, contentious and confused. The Cathar View offers the perspectives of roughly twenty-five different contributors. They range from the scholarly to the 'alternative'. Chapters take us from accounts of their predecessors, the Bogomils, through to a review of recent 'heretical' viewpoints about the Holy Grail - the basis of the Da Vinci Code and the burdgeoning legend of Mary Magdalene. There are contributions about Cathar sympathizers such as Otto Rahn, who for many is the original for Indiana Jones, and we look at some of the occultists who have been intrigued by the Cathar inheritance, such as the mysterious Polaires. We take a loving look at the landscape of the Languedoc and what it holds for walkers and mystics alike. The seven sections of the book are History, Alternative Perspectives, Reincarnation and Memory, Historical Viewpoints, The Cathars and the Grail, The Cathar Landscape and The Cathar Legacy. In sum, this is a unique and valuable contribution to the literature about the Cathars or Albigenses, sympathetic to its subject and offering new clarity about what really underlay their intriguing beliefs. Dave Patrick, the editor, follows the format of two very successful titles to which The Cathar View now forms a companion: The View, which was about the spiritual legacy of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and The View Beyond, which dealt with Sir Francis Bacon and his programme of learning.