This week I completed my epic journey through Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf, which is perhaps the hardest book I've ever had to read.
Not for the reasons you'd think, indeed it is not a grim read and you get strangely used to everything being the Jew's fault and if it's not the Jews it's the Marxists (who are all Jews anyway) and if it's not either of those two's faults then it might possible be a German's fault but not a real German, a German who is a Jew loving Marxist.
This will all sound oddly familiar do anyone who has had to "debate" daft racists on the Internet.
Anywho, the reason the book is difficult to read is that it is, as Winston Churchill said: "a turgid, verbose and shapeless affair" that runs to some 600+ pages and aside from the opening chapters that are an autobiography of sorts (and are actually quite humorous in parts, although I'm not sure if Hitler was trying to funny...probably not knowing him), the rest is a bombastic call to arms for anti-Semites across the globe.
The level of puffed-up self-importance is staggering and although it is clearly justified, the man built up a new political party from eight people (himself included) to over a million strong force of Germans through sheer force of will, I don't think we need five pages of flowery, earnest verbiage as to the thought process behind designing the Nazi flag and how long it took him to get the white circle that surrounds the swastika the right bloody size.
What was most interesting for me was reading about how Christian he was, I knew Hitler was a Catholic but religious types always bring up Hitler and Stalin as examples of atheism going terrible wrong. Which makes me laugh, as if Hitler or Stalin are epitomes of atheism when they invest so much in building up a God head via the cult of personality...I digress...
Hitler was a Catholic and a big fan of Christianity, he saw Jesus as an Aryan slaying the Jews, forgetting that Jesus was a Jew (many Christians seem to do this) in the process; in fact much of Hitler's religious views are selective and self-serving but let it not be said the man was an atheist.
Anyway, what caught my eye in Mein Kampf regarding religion was that Christianity was a template for Hitler's beliefs, in the way that it crushed all opposition to it with ruthless force and power and that intolerance is a good thing in order to create stability. Hitler's reference point was paganism and witch hunts but it made me think that organised Christian faith provided Hitler with his final solution ideology.
Also, Hitler talks about how the Catholic churches' then blind faith and utter adherence to its teaching and principles, meant a total denial of any and all scientific and rational evidence that contradicted it (please see the United States and for it's current incarnation). Thus, in such dogma and immovable attitude Hitler sees, rightly so, that all strength is bound and that as soon as you tolerate or compromise by fitting in other's ideas, in the churches' case science and the advancement of human knowledge, you weaken and fall away.
I'll leave you with this comedy video of Hitler.