Oct 8, 2012

September 11th, October 7th and Solidarity

By HRM Richard

  Today we celebrate the Feast of the Holy Rosary, a feast first instituted by His Holiness Pope Pius V as the Feast of Our Lady of Victory to commemorate the victory of the Catholic League over Ottoman forces at the Battle of Lepanto on October 7th, 1571 AD, a victory attributed to the intercession of God at the behest of Our Lady after millions of Catholics prayed the rosary for the protection of Christendom against the Ottoman raiders and pirates.
  This victory came just 6 years after the victory at the Siege of Mata on September 11th, 1565 AD, where the Knights of St. John and their local militia forces defeated the vastly-larger Ottoman forces which had attacked them, setting the stage for a renewed Catholic hope and for the success at Lepanto.  In both cases the larger, better-equipped Ottoman forces were defeated by Catholic forces through determination and and luck so great as to be Providential.
  The two victories, both almost half a millennia in the past, represent Solidarity in both its most intimate and most widespread forms. The Knights of St. John were largely alone, virtually abandoned by European forces which assumed they could not possibly win such a lop-sided battle. But their devotion to God, to their Order, and to their mission allowed the Knights to triumph. This was Solidarity at the intimate level, almost as a family, as a few hundred men drew together as a single unit. This demonstration of Solidarity as esprit de corps inspired Europe.
  A handful of years later Lepanto represented the other extreme of Solidarity - despite vast differences in education and wealth, native language and homeland, Catholics all over Europe drew together to support the forces at Lepanto. Millions of people were united in a common task toward a common goal in a show of Solidarity that virtually erased the differences between German and Frenchman, commoner and noble to let them identify as Catholic. Where the Knights were in a single place, the Catholics supporting Lepanto were separated by vast distances yet united in a very real way.
  This is critical to understanding what we mean when we say that territoriality is not important to Edan in the way it is essential to nation-states. Edan is based upon Solidarity; upon shared values, shared morals and shared ethics; upon shared culture, shared goals, and shared laws. In a very real way, Edanians are directly connected even though we have not yet met in person.
  Where Edanians are, there is Edan.
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