chapter  8
16 Pages

German Tradition of Chiliasm

This chapter studies Friedrich Schlegel's interpretation of the Kingdom of God as the future Golden Age of perpetual peace. It sets out to interpret the chiliastic structure of modern history in Schlegel's thinking before his conversion to Catholicism. The chapter focuses on eighteenth-century ideas of perpetual peace and divine world governance. This includes Schlegel's reception of the tradition of chiliasm and its influence on his philosophy of history at the turn of the nineteenth century. The first key teaching of chiliasm was that the inauguration of God's Kingdom would mean a Golden Age on Earth, which would last a thousand years (a millennium) before the final judgement, as is promised in the Book of Revelation. Although chiliasm is based on the teaching of the Book of Revelation, which is included in the canonical version of the Bible, all mainstream Christian confessions have declared it a heresy.