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I believe that Lutheranism was very revolutionary as it challenged the beliefs and practises of the Catholic religion.

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Introduction

I believe that Lutheranism was very revolutionary as it challenged the beliefs and practises of the Catholic religion. Its religious foundation was based entirely on the Bible and it changed many aspects of society within Germany which appealed too many of the different groups. However, Luther was not revolutionary himself and did not intend to be. His beliefs and practises were closely linked to his personal relationship with God. Due to the responses of Lutheranism this helped it to become revolutionary influential all over Germany and soon Europe. In order to understand Martin Luther's challenge to the beliefs and rituals of Catholic Europe, one must recognise that Luther himself did not set out to lead a breakaway movement from the Catholic Church. Indeed, he was conservative character who had chosen to join the Augustinian religious order were he became a monk and devoted his life to God through prayer and contemplation. Luther was trying to return the Catholic Church back to its original purity and it could be argued that it was the Catholic Church that had been revolutionary as it moved drastically away from the teachings of Christ. ...read more.

Middle

Whilst Luther specifically appealed to the German nobility in 1520 for support in reforming the Church they remained remote, preferring to see how Lutheranism would develop. To the Princes and their situation Lutheranism was radical because of the danger it put the nobility in. Not only would the influence of Lutheranism create tension between German territories and the Holy Roman Empire but could also generate civil conflict between Catholics and Lutherans within German states. From 1524 however, some of the most powerful princes in Germany became sympathetic to Lutheran ideas and this encouraged other princely territories to change too. Both Albrecht of Hohenzollern and Philipp of Hesse were among those to impose Lutheran ideas within their states. Lutheranism did benefit princes greatly as it took away papal taxes and made the territory ruler head of its own church. Financially and politically the reformation was ideal for a prince who wanted more riches and power but nevertheless, the princes did make Lutheranism appear revolutionary by influencing it with their needs and insatiability. Luther himself was wary of armed support, as he maintained a strictly pacifist approach to his reform. ...read more.

Conclusion

One of Luther's views especially attracted them as it questioned secular authority and to what extent society should be bound to obey it. Although this seemed optimistic for a group whose lives was becoming harder and exploited, it caused unrest between peasants and the authorities. From 1524, there were many radical risings from peasants all over Germany and Europe which revolted grievances from an exploited generation. These upbringings including the Twelve Articles of Memmingen which were seen as very radical because of the nature of the negotiations. For example, communities must have the right to appoint and dismiss their clergy. Many of these consultations were based upon Luther's ideas however; many had been exaggerated or adapted to suit the needs of the peasants both politically and socially. It is clear that Lutheranism within German society between 1517 and 1530 was very revolutionary compared to the religious beliefs and practises of the Catholic Church. It changed many of the social, political and economical positions and practises within the different classes of society. Although it is clear that Luther did not intend for his beliefs to become radical these helped to change the religious practises of Germany and Europe for ever. ...read more.

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