Bogomils “Beloved of God”

Published On: June 29, 2023Categories: Blog595 words3 min read

The name literally means “Beloved of God,” a name with which they qualified themselves so as to be distinguished from the rest of Christendom, who they consider has fallen into the degeneration and negation of the Christic principles. Their past history has a macabre parallelism with the situation lived at the beginning of the 90’s in relation with the civil war, the “ethnic cleansing” and the tragedies that have devastated Bosnia-Herzegovina in these last years.

Tradition relates that in its mountains, forests and plains, far from the metropolis and from the Catholic and Orthodox hierarchy of Serbia, rural communities that gathered the gnostic traditions of past centuries flourished. And in the IX Century they established solid groups that faced the earthly power and the dominant ecclesiastic institution. In a rural environment, Gnosis joins the ideological and religious insurrection to the social rebelliousness, gathering in its bosom thousands of peasants and artisans who ended up creating their own independent organization, their own laws, and finally even their own army.

In those lands scarce vestiges of this culture barely remain. If at all, some tombstones in several cities of the area, most of them now practically destroyed by time, and several monoliths lost in the forest, are silent survivors of the systematic destruction to which this heresy was subjected. Solely excommunication and imprisonment does not work against the Bogomils. Social insurrection is a lot more dangerous than the simply religious one. A group that affirms that this world is the result of the victory of the forces of evil, to which the rich churches and the great lords that live immersed in the most complete ethical degradation serve; and who in the face of this put forward the return to the postulates of primitive Christianity: transmutation instead of procreation; cooperation instead of exploitation; matrimonies for love instead of conventional marriages; the rejection of the God of the Old Testament; the reestablishment of the Living Christ as head of a church of true sacrifice; etc., by its own merits is earning its violent expulsion from the history of humanity.

Again, like in the early times, all kinds of slander are raised against them. They are accused of being sodomites, insurrectionists, licentious, communists (well, they would be accused of that today), heretics, libertines, etc.. The great crusade begins their destruction. The orthodox monarchs supported by the institutional church recruited thousands of soldiers who in the name of God invaded those countries. They plundered, stole, killed, violated, slaughtered and burned everything they found in their way. In spite of everything, the Bogomils never betrayed the gnostic oath of searching for the truth and justice above all conventionalism. That cost them not only their lives and the lives of all their loved ones, but also the annexation of their lands, which were invaded by Serbian colonists and seekers of fortune, giving way to a problem that has fatally reached up to our times.

With this terrible event, the terrestrial power of the Official Church went from pursuing the heresies through its leaders, to beginning the politics of the great religious crusades, in order to put an end to the Gnostic insurrection, slaughtering entire towns and taking possession of their estates and territories. The attitude of the Bogomils, proclaiming their faith in the true Christ up to their own death, at the stake, far from putting an end to the dissidence, provided them with an aureole of martyrs, and laid with force their convictions; which would reappear later in time through the postulates of the Cathars of the French Languedoc.

~Wise Person