church & state in roman empire

Church and State in the Roman Empire
Since the conception of the Constitution, the United States has been in a quandary about the involvement of religion within government.Currently, the hot button issue involves a moment of morning prayer in public schools.The bureaucracy is still deciding whether or not this proposal infringes upon the Constitution.This impasse between church and state is not new.One of thefirst examples of the combination of church and state occurred when Constantine declared Christianity the official religion of Rome.The legalization of Christianity changed in Roman identity.While religion usually is for the betterment of society, the legalization of Christianity was one of the contributing factors that led to the eventual decline of the Roman Empire.
To begin, the Early Republic (509-287 B.C.) shows how soon the Roman's established their hierarchy with the patron-client relationships.These relationships remained after Constantine legalized Christianity.Patrons, or "defenders," had clients, or "dependents," to work for them.In return, patrons vouched for their clients and provided them a steady job (NSONCR 147-148).A clear view of one's place in society was clear.Additionally, society was broken down into two: plebeians and patriarchs.From lecture, with respect to the Roman ideal persona, a patriarch was born wealthy and inherited much of his riches.Making a better life for oneself was frowned upon, one was expected to stay within the class one was born into; the current ideal of the "American Dream" clearly does not fit into the Roman agenda.
Furthermore, Roman identity was molded in their early values consisting of pietas, virtus, gravitas, dignitas and actoritas.Early Roman primary sources document how important living out these values was to their society."The Early History of Rome" documents the rape of Lucretia.Afte…

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