(This is about the Protestant Reformation, i believed that ithas always existed strictly as a political event) Politics and ReligionPolitical and social struggles causes many religious uprising. Even thoughReligious Reformations are major breakthroughs in the Catholic Church, itspremises remained strictly as a political event. Protestantism was a techniqueused by noble princes as well as emperors to break away from the control of theCatholic Church and also a reason to gain dominancy over other nations.
However,the foremost reason that Reformations remains primarily as a political event isbecause it served as a reason for conflict between church and state. The firstreason that the Reformation was a political event was the alliance betweenreligious group and the state. Protestant groups, especially Lutherans andCalvinists, sided with national authorities to create international politicalupheaval. One mentionable historical event was the Hapsburg-Valois War. To gaincontrol of Italy and the Burgundian realms, Francis I of France, being aCatholic, did not hesitate to form an alliance with the Protestants in hisobjective to crush Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, the fall heir of theBurgundian territories.
On the other hand, the Protestant card was also playedby Charles when he repressed Francis with the help of the Henry VIII, head ofthe Church of England. Thus, this showed that Protestants during the Reformationwas created ideally to and was manipulated by strong political powers in theirconquest to gain dominancy over other states. Another reason for thegovernmental event was its usage by the noble princes to gain political freedomfor their states by breaking away from the control of the supreme governer. Whatwas a religious struggles between the Protestants and the Church became amovement towards a politically freed state.
One example would be the internalconflict between Charles V and his German princes and their states. During thedisorder of the Reformation, princes were emboldened to seek autonomy for theirstates, thus, creating a civil war between them and the Emperor. The Peace ofAusburg was signed by Charles by which gave the princes the right to determinedthe core religion in his territories. However, the political side to it was thePeace of Westphalia, a reinstatement of the Asburg’s.
Signed some years later bythe empire, the Peace of Westphalia gave the princes the right to supremeauthority over their territories. This showed that in the essence of mostreligious struggles, the main objective is to gain political advantage amongother dominant powers. But the foremost cause that led to the belief that theProtestant Reformation was a political event was the private issues between theking and the pope. Supremacy of state, judicial authoratives, and noble maritalproblems were raised to the level of national predicament. These issues werepresented with the conflict between Henry VIII and the Church.
During Henry’sreign, many of his marriages went down the drain because he was cursed without ahealthy, male heir to the English thrown. But years later, having fallen in lovewith Anne Boleyn, a noble woman who promised him a son, Henry tried to get hismarriage to Catherine of Aragon annulled. But when the Church rejected hisorder, Henry broke away and formed The Church of England. In his documents. TheAct of Restraint of Appeal and the Supremacy Act, Henry declared himself thesupreme ruler and judicial authority of England and noted that there areabsolutely no political interference from the Church allowed.
This showed thatthe biggest contribution to the Protestant Reformation are the selfish desiresof kings and the Church. Behind most religious disorder, the roots of conflictwas always political struggles between church and state. These ideas wereexpressed by many rulers who were tangled in the web of international religiousstruggles. Charles V, the Holy Roman Emperor, Henry VIII of England, GermanProtestant princes, rulers of all background manipulated Protestant Reformationsand had used it to their own advantage such as to gain political powers andtheir other personal needs. Thus, the roots of existence of most ProtestantReformation has always been, a political event.European History