Sunday, May 13, 2012

Origin of the Knights Templar part 3 - quote

Bernard de Clairvaux
source Wikipedia
"The above rule having been confirmed by a Papal bull, Hugh de Payens proceeded to France, and from thence he came to England, and the following account is given of his arrival, in the Saxon chronicle.

"This same year, (A.D. 1128,) Hugh of the Temple came from Jerusalem to the king in Normandy, and the king received him with much honour, and gave him much treasure in gold and silver, and afterwards he sent him into England, and there he was well received by all good men, and all gave him treasure, and in Scotland also, and they sent in all a great sum in gold and silver by him to Jerusalem, and there went with him and after him so great a number as never before since the days of Pope Urban." Grants of land, as well as of money, were at the same time made to Hugh de Payens and his brethren, some of which were shortly afterwards confirmed by King Stephen on his accession to the throne, (A.D. 1135.) Among these is a grant of the manor of Bistelesham made to the Templars by Count Robert de Ferrara, and a grant of the church of Langeforde in Bedfordshire made by Simon de Wahull, and Sibylla his wife, and Walter their son.

Hugh de Payens, before his departure, placed a Knight Templar at the head of the order in this country, who was called the Prior of the Temple, and was the procurator and vicegerent of the Master. It was his duty to manage the estates granted to the fraternity, and to transmit the revenues to Jerusalem. He was also delegated with the power of admitting members into the order, subject to the control and direction of the Master, and was to provide means of transport for such newly-admitted brethren to the far east, to enable them to fulfil the duties of their profession. As the houses of the Temple increased in number in England, sub-priors came to be appointed, and the superior of the order in this country was then called the Grand Prior, and afterwards Master of the Temple.

Many illustrious knights of the best families in Europe aspired to the habit and the vows, but however exalted their rank, they were not received within the bosom of the fraternity until they had proved themselves by their conduct worthy of such a fellowship. Thus, when Hugh d’Amboise, who had harassed and oppressed the people of Marmontier by unjust exactions, and had refused to submit to the judicial decision of the Count of Anjou, desired to enter the order, Hugh de Payens refused to admit him to the vows, until he had humbled himself, renounced his pretensions, and given perfect satisfaction to those whom he had injured. * The candidates, moreover, previous to their admission,
were required to make reparation and satisfaction for all damage done by them at any time to churches, and to public or private property.

An astonishing enthusiasm was excited throughout Christendom in behalf of the Templars; princes and nobles, sovereigns and their subjects, vied with each other in heaping gifts and benefits upon them, and scarce a will of importance was made without an article in it in their favour. Many illustrious persons on their deathbeds took the vows, that they might be buried in the habit of the order; and sovereigns, quitting the government of their kingdoms, enrolled themselves amongst the holy fraternity, and bequeathed even their dominions to the Master and the brethren of the Temple.

Thus, Raymond Berenger, Count of Barcelona and Provence, at a very advanced age, abdicating his throne, and shaking off the ensigns of royal authority, retired to the house of the Templars at Barcelona, and pronounced his vows (A.D. 1130) before brother Hugh de Rigauld, the Prior. His infirmities not allowing him to proceed in person to the chief house of the order at Jerusalem, he sent vast sums of money thither, and immuring himself in a small cell in the Temple at Barcelona, he there remained in the constant exercise of the religious duties of his profession until the day of his death. * At the same period, the Emperor Lothaire bestowed on the order a large portion of his patrimony of Supplinburg; and the year following, (A.D. 1131,) Alphonso the First, king of Navarre and Arragon, also styled Emperor of Spain, one of the greatest warriors of the age, by his will declared the Knights of the Temple his heirs and successors in the crowns of Navarre and Arragon, and a few hours before his death he caused this will to be ratified and signed by most of the barons of both kingdoms. The validity of this document, however, was disputed, and the claims of the Templars were successfully resisted by the nobles of Navarre; but in Arragon they obtained, by way of compromise, lands, and castles, and considerable dependencies, a portion of the customs and duties levied throughout the kingdom, and of the contributions raised from the Moors. *

To increase the enthusiasm in favour of the Templars, and still further to swell their ranks with the best and bravest of the European chivalry, St. Bernard, at the request of Hugh de Payens, took up his powerful pen in their behalf. In a famous discourse "In praise of the New Chivalry," the holy abbot sets forth, in eloquent and enthusiastic terms, the spiritual advantages and blessings enjoyed by the military friars of the Temple over all other warriors. He draws a curious picture of the relative situations and circumstances of the secular soldiery and the soldiery of Christ, and shows how different in the sight of God are the bloodshed and slaughter perpetrated by the one, from that committed by the other.

St. Bernard then congratulates Jerusalem on the advent of the soldiers of Christ, and declares that the holy city will rejoice with a double joy in being rid of all her oppressors, the ungodly, the robbers, the blasphemers, murderers, perjurers, and adulterers; and in receiving her faithful defenders and sweet consolers, under the shadow of whose protection " Mount Zion shall rejoice, and the daughters of Judah sing for joy."

HUGH DE PAYENS, having now laid in Europe the foundations of the great monastic and military institution of the Temple, which was destined shortly to spread its ramifications to the remotest quarters of Christendom, returned to Palestine at the head of a valiant band of newly-elected Templars, drawn principally from England and France.
On their arrival at Jerusalem they were received with great distinction by the king, the clergy, and the barons of the Latin kingdom, a grand council was called together, at which Hugh de Payens assisted, and various warlike measures were undertaken for the extension and protection of the christian territories.

Hugh de Payens died, however, shortly after his return, and was succeeded (A.D. 1136) by the Lord Robert, surnamed the Burgundian, (son-in-law of Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury,) who, after the death of his wife, had taken the vows and the habit of the Templars. * He was a valiant and skilful general, but the utmost exertions of himself and his military monks were found insufficient to sustain the tottering empire of the Latin Christians."

source quotes: The History of the Knights Templar, by Charles G. Addison, [1842]

Origin of the Knights Templar part 2 - quote

Hugues de Payens
source wikipedia
"Their first aim and object had been, as before mentioned, simply to protect the poor pilgrims, on their journey backwards and forwards, from the sea-coast to Jerusalem; * but as the hostile tribes of Mussulmen, which everywhere surrounded the Latin kingdom, were gradually recovering from the stupifying terror into which they had been plunged by the successful and exterminating warfare of the first crusaders, and were assuming an aggressive and threatening attitude, it was determined that the holy warriors of the Temple should, in addition to the protection of pilgrims, make the defence of the christian kingdom of Jerusalem, of the eastern church, and of all the holy places, a part of their particular profession.
The two most distinguished members of the fraternity were Hugh de Payens and Geoffrey de St. Aldemar, or St. Omer, two valiant soldiers of the cross, who had fought with great credit and renown at the siege of Jerusalem. Hugh de Payens was chosen by the knights to be the superior of the new religious and military society, by the title of "The Master of the Temple;" and he has, consequently, generally been called the founder of the order.
The name and reputation of the Knights Templars speedily spread throughout Europe, and various illustrious pilgrims from the far west aspired to become members of the holy fraternity. Among these was Falk, Count of Anjou, who joined the society as a married brother, (A.D. 1120,) and annually remitted the order thirty pounds of silver. Baldwin, king of Jerusalem, foreseeing that great advantages would accrue to the Latin kingdom by the increase of the power and numbers of these holy warriors, exerted himself to extend the order throughout all Christendom, so that he might, by means of so politic an institution, keep alive the holy enthusiasm of the west, and draw a constant succour from the bold and warlike races of Europe for the support of his christian throne and kingdom.
St. Bernard, the holy abbot of Clairvaux, had been a great admirer of the Templars. He wrote a letter to the Count of Champagne, on his entering the order, (A.D. 1123,) praising the act as one of eminent merit in the sight of God; and it was determined to enlist the all-powerful influence of this great ecclesiastic in favour of the fraternity. "By a vow of poverty and penance, by closing his eyes against the visible world, by the refusal of all ecclesiastical dignities, the Abbot of Clairvaux became the oracle of Europe, and the founder of one hundred and sixty convents. Princes and pontiffs trembled at the freedom of his apostolical censures: France, England, and Milan, consulted and obeyed his judgment in a schism of the church: the debt was repaid by the gratitude of Innocent the Second; and his successor, Eugenics the Third, was the friend and disciple of the holy St. Bernard." *

To this learned and devout prelate two knights templars were despatched with the following letter:

"Baldwin, by the grace of the Lord JESUS CHRIST, King of Jerusalem, and Prince of Antioch, to the venerable Father Bernard, Abbot of Clairvaux, health and regard.

"The Brothers of the Temple, whom the Lord hath deigned to raise up, and whom by an especial Providence he preserves for the defence of this kingdom, desiring to obtain from the Holy See the confirmation of their institution, and a rule for their particular guidance, we have determined to send to you the two knights, Andrew and Gondemar, men as much distinguished by their military exploits as by the splendour of their birth, to obtain from the Pope the approbation of their order, and to dispose his holiness to send succour and subsidies against the enemies of the faith, reunited in their design to destroy us, and to invade our christian territories.
"Well knowing the weight of your mediation with God and his vicar upon earth, as well as with the princes and powers of Europe, we have thought fit to confide to yon these two important matters, whose successful issue cannot be otherwise than most agreeable to ourselves. The statutes we ask of you should be so ordered and arranged as to be reconcilable with the tumult of the camp and the profession of arms; they must, in fact, be of such a nature as to obtain favour and popularity with the christian princes.
"Do you then so manage, that we may, through you, have the happiness of seeing this important affair brought to a successful issue, and address for us to heaven the incense of your prayers." *

Soon after the above letter had been despatched to St. Bernard, Hugh de Payens himself proceeded to Rome, accompanied by Geoffrey de St. Aldemar, and four other brothers of the order, viz. Brother Payen de Montdidier, Brother Gorall, Brother Geoffrey Bisol, and Brother Archambauld de St. Amand. They were received with great honour and distinction by Pope Honorius, who warmly approved of the objects and designs of the holy fraternity. St. Bernard had, in the mean time, taken the affair greatly to heart; he negotiated with the Pope, the legate, and the bishops of France, and obtained the convocation of a great ecclesiastical council at Troyes, (A.D. 11280 which Hugh de Payens and his brethren were invited to attend. This council consisted of several archbishops, bishops, and abbots, among which last was St. Bernard himself. The rules to which the Templars had subjected themselves were there described by the master, and to the holy Abbot of Clairvaux was confided the task of revising and correcting these rules, and of framing a code of statutes fit and proper for the governance of the great religious and military fraternity of the Temple.

"THE RULE OF THE POOR FELLOW-SOLDIERS OF JESUS CHRIST AND OF THE TEMPLE OF SOLOMON," arranged by St. Bernard, and sanctioned by the Holy Fathers of the Council of Troyes, for the government and regulation of the monastic and military society of the Temple, is principally of a religious character, and of an austere and gloomy cast. It is divided into seventy-two heads or chapters, and is preceded by a short prologue, addressed "to all who disdain to follow after their own wills, and desire with purity of mind to fight for the most high and true king," exhorting
them to put on the armour of obedience, and to associate themselves together with piety and humility for the defence of the holy catholic church; and to employ a pure diligence, and a steady perseverance in the exercise of their sacred profession, so that they might share in the happy destiny reserved for the holy warriors who had given up their lives for Christ."

source quotes: The History of the Knights Templar, by Charles G. Addison, [1842]

Origin of the Knights Templar part 1 - quote

Caliph Umar the Great
Conquerer of Jerusalem 637 AD
"The extraordinary and romantic institution of the Knights Templars, those military friars who so strangely blended the character of the monk with that of the soldier, took its origin in the following manner: On the miraculous discovery of the Holy sepulchre by the Empress Helena, the mother of Constantine, about 298 years after the death of Christ, and the consequent erection, by command of the first christian emperor, of the magnificent church of the Resurrection, or, as it is now called, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, over the sacred monument, the tide of pilgrimage set in towards Jerusalem, and went on increasing in strength as Christianity gradually spread throughout Europe.

On the surrender of the Holy City to the victorious Arabians, (A.D. 637) the privileges and the security of the christian population were provided for in the following guarantee, given under the hand and seal of the Caliph Omar to Sophronius the Patriarch.

"From OMAR EBNO ’L ALCHITAB to the inhabitants of ÆLIA.
They shall be protected and secured both in their lives and fortunes, and their churches shall neither be pulled down nor made use of by any but themselves."


Under the government of the Arabians, the pilgrimages continued steadily to increase; the old and the young, women and children, flocked in crowds to Jerusalem, and in the year 1064 the Holy Sepulchre was visited by an enthusiastic band of seven thousand pilgrims, headed by the Archbishop of Mentz and the Bishops of Utrecht, Bamberg, and Ratisbon.

The year following, however, Jerusalem was conquered by the wild Turcomans. Three thousand of the citizens were indiscriminately massacred, and the hereditary command over the Holy City and territory was confided to the Emir Ortok, the chief of a savage pastoral tribe. Under the iron yoke of these fierce Northern strangers, the Christians were fearfully oppressed; they were driven from their churches; divine worship was ridiculed and interrupted"

"The melancholy intelligence of the profanation of the holy places, and of the oppression and cruelty of the Turcomans, aroused the religious chivalry of Christendom; "a nerve was touched of exquisite feeling, and the sensation vibrated to the heart of Europe.
Then arose the wild enthusiasm of the crusades; men of all ranks, and even monks and priests, animated by the exhortations of the pope and the preachings of Peter the Hermit, flew to arms, and enthusiastically undertook "the pious and glorious enterprize" of rescuing the holy sepulchre of Christ from the foul abominations of the heathen.

When intelligence of the capture of Jerusalem by the Crusaders (A.D. 1099) had been conveyed to Europe, the zeal of pilgrimage blazed forth with increased fierceness... The infidels had indeed been driven out of Jerusalem, but not out of Palestine. The lofty mountains bordering the sea-coast were infested by bold and warlike bands of fugitive Mussulmen. ...

To alleviate the dangers and distresses to which these pious enthusiasts were exposed, to guard the honour of the saintly virgins and matrons, and to protect the gray hairs of the venerable palmer, nine noble knights formed a holy brotherhood in arms, and entered into a solemn compact to aid one another in clearing the highways of infidels, and of robbers, and in protecting the pilgrims through the passes and defiles of the mountains to the Holy City. Warmed with the religious and military fervour of the day, and animated by the sacredness of the cause to which they had devoted their swords, they called themselves the Poor Fellow-soldiers of Jesus Christ. They renounced the world and its pleasures, and in the holy church of the Resurrection, in the presence of the patriarch of Jerusalem, they embraced vows of perpetual chastity, obedience, and poverty, after the manner of monks. * Uniting in themselves the two most popular qualities of the age, devotion and valour, and exercising them in the most popular of all enterprises, the protection of the pilgrims and of the road to the holy sepulchre, they speedily acquired a vast reputation and a splendid renown."

source quotes: The History of the Knights Templar, by Charles G. Addison, [1842]

Monday, May 7, 2012

Templar rule (OSMTH)

Rule of the Temple

“Here begins the prologue to the Rule of the Temple: We speak first to all those who secretly despise their
own will and desire with a pure heart to serve the Sovereign King as a knight and with studious care
desire to wear, and wear permanently, the very noble armour of obedience.”

(from the introduction to the Primitive Rule of St Bernard of Clairvaux for the Templars)



Regula Moderna

- On the Temple and its Service -
Remember that you are a Templar, an inheritor of the “Poor Fellow Soldiers of the Temple”, so called
because the first headquarters of our noble Order were in the precinct of the Temple in Jerusalem.
Think on the word “Temple” and its meaning continually. As divine scripture says: “One thing have I
desired of the Lord which I will require; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,
to behold the fair beauty of the Lord and to visit his Temple.”
(Psalm27; verse 4)

- On Love for the Church -
Consider with joy “that we are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and
members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ
himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole building being bonded together grows into a holy
Temple to the Lord, and in whom we are built together as a dwelling of God through the Spirit.”
(St Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians; chapter 2; verses 19 to 22)

- On Discipline of the Body -
Read over again the original Rule given to us by St Bernard of Clairvaux and seek to put it into practice
in modern life. With all thankfulness for God’s good gifts, resist temptation and be master of your body.

- On Knightly Combat -
Be mindful that you are on the crusade of the King of Kings. “Unless you take up your cross and follow
me, you have no part with me”, said our Master. (St Matthew’s Gospel: chapter 16; verse24) Do not be
afraid to confess the King who is like no other King.
May the white cloak remind you that we fight a holy war in all truthfulness; and may the red crosspattée
remind you that sacrifices must be made; for “we do not fight against flesh and blood, but against
potentates and powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, and against spiritual wickedness
in the cosmos.” (St Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians: chapter 6; verse 12)

- On Brotherhood -
Remember that you stand beside your brother at all times, as he fights under the same banner as you.
Obey your superiors, honouring Christ in them. We have only one Master, Christ; but we are all
brothers. Feel responsible for your brother, for God will also ask you one day: “Where is your brother?”.
As a knight, stand up for the weak, above all for women and children, widows and orphans who need
your help. Avail yourself of the worldwide community of the Order to correspond with your brothers and
sisters and visit them whenever you have the opportunity.

“Now we have told you the things which you should do and what you should guard against . . . and we have not told you everything we need to tell you, but you will ask it. And may God let you say and do well.”

source text and illustration osmth.org