Sunday, July 15, 2007

Monarchy vs. Democracy

“Lordship for many is no good thing. Let there be one ruler, one king…”
Iliad ~ Homer
Book II line 204-05

Until recently, democracy and monarchy have been nothing more than terms for good and bad government. Living in a democracy, I typically only hear of the evils of monarchy….but I wonder if there isn’t something good in monarchy that we miss in an overwhelmingly democratic world.

The stories (fairy tales and history) are all too fresh in my mind of the evil king or queen who tortured their people and forced unbearable living conditions upon them while they sat in their cushioned seats clothed in the most expensive material. Then characters such as Robin Hood, come on the scene and begin to help the poor by stealing from the rich and rallying together the people from the surrounding villages to fight back. However, it is interesting that they are not looking to replace the form of government…rather the person in power. Replace the evil king with a good king.

It seems a little risky on the part of Robin Hood (and people like him)….didn’t it cross their minds that such absolute power would more than likely corrupt whoever attains/receives it? What good was there to be had in monarchy that made it worth the risk?

Here’s what I have come up with so far….monarchy tends to work in extremes. It either produces such evil as can be imagined or it produces a utopia that a democracy could never possibly attain. Where democracy plays it safe by distributing power among all the people, monarchy says, “A virtuous man who rules righteously will bring about perfect peace in a kingdom….however, an evil and corrupt man will produce atrocities that were before unthinkable.” Confusion and frustration seem to preside over a democratic government…but it is exactly those two states of being which prohibit such evils as Auschwitz from becoming a reality. At the same time, they also prohibit peace and prosperity as was found during the reign of King Oswald (700 A.D.) and Richard the Lion Heart.

I’m not sure if reinstating a monarchy would be the best thing to do at this point in time in history. I know England still prides themselves on maintaining one…but even then the country is mostly run by the Prime Minister and a Parliament. It would be too much of a shock (especially for America) to demolish democracy and replace it with a monarchy. The very reason the pilgrims left England was to escape the government (and I think some of those hard feelings still linger among the American culture).

Is Homer right then? For the Kingdom of Christ which is to come…yes! However, until that time I think a democratic society is ultimately the safer and more effective way by which people ought to be governed.


Emily said...

That is so crazy, I have been thinking about this exact same thing lately. More specifically, the paradox of our western freedom. There are such loopholes being exploited, that now people have the freedom to oppose freedom, if you follow. And it's quite a can't be "fascist" and charge a person for disagreeing with you, but you can't also have this kind of division and expect a country to function efficiently.

Emily said...

Where'd ya go?

Anonymous said...

monarchy has many more advantages then democracy.
a thing i know is that back then, if a king disoveyed a rule (which in the Monarchy system the kings obeyed the catholic church before protestantism.) he could be sentence to death only by his jurors. such as king henry, however king henry was not sentenced because the jurors believed in his ideas.

One thing the people did not choose their kings. it was inherited. it was belived that a king could be a blessing or a punishment. if the king is good then the land was blessed by God because the country was obeying his laws, but if the country disobeyed God's rules then the next or current king will be totalitarian.

Jonika said...

Oh, if only we could have a monarchy and a king ruling under the rulership of the King of kings, who is Jesus.
The fact that we are born into democracy, we automatically are molded and shaped by it unaware. We subconsciously form a way of believing that THIS is how it's supposed to be, this is how it's supposed to work.
Contrary to popular belief, when Christ came, He didn't preach deliverance and healing, He didn't preach faith, He didn't preach Heaven or religion to the multitudes. He preached one thing: Kingdom. And what He said those thousands of years ago is so applicable today: a day in age where democracy rules this world.
Moreover, Jesus said to "repent." Repent means "to change your thinking." When your mind changes, so does your heart, and thus, your conduct. When you get your mind in alignment with Truth, and with the Kingdom, it WILL bring you to a place of repentance. But I know from experience, transforming your mind to understand Kingdom over democracy takes humility and much prayer. But this is what I - and you - are called to: KINGDOM! So, seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness.