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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 30 June 2018
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 30 JUNE 2018 23 OPINION Macedonia and the Macedonians STELLA ANGELAKI - KATSIARI The Macedonians are Greeks to the degree that the Spartans are Greeks, too. The Macedonians are Greeks of the Doric tribe, just like the Spartans, while the Athenians are Greeks of the Ionian tribe. The derivation of the name "Macedonia" is Macedon, the grandson of Deucalion, who is the great grandfather of all the Greeks. Hesiod (late 8th, early 7th century BCE) mentions it in his Genealogy (Theogony). you have. It's completely inconceivable." "Don't laugh, my friend." I warned him. "Go and enquire of your aged relatives as to the ethnicity of Jesus and then let's talk." When next I saw him, he was crestfallen and sporting a bruise on his arm. "I simply can't believe it," he shook his head. They are convinced Jesus was Greek. All of them. One enraged uncle even claimed he was an incarnation of the Olympian god Apollo." "So, if Jesus, on the flimsy linguistic grounds you have offered, was as you say a ‘Maco’," I departed from my reverie, "then why is the rest of the world convinced that he was a Jew?" "Oh, that's easily explained," my friend wiped the last of the latte stain from his upper lip. "The Jews will never forgive us ‘Maco's’ for conquering their kingdom in ancient times. And they will never forgive Jesus, as a ‘Maco’, for trying to destroy their religion. That is why they are out to destroy the ‘Macedonian’ people. This also explains why the Jews are helping the Greeks steal our name and persecute our people. It's all a big conspiracy concocted by Jews and freemasons to keep our people from realising their full potential." Images of my aunt's coal black pupils dilated in fury flashed before my eyes. "Pardon me for asking," I smiled, "but are you sure Herodotus (5th century BCE) wrote that the "multi-travelled" Greek nation moved a lot and in the northern part of Greece it was called "Macednon", while in Peloponnese (Southern Greece) it was called "Doric". Macedonia gave birth to the 12 gods of the Greek pagan faith, as well as to the nine Muses, the lovely ladies, guardians of the fine arts. The Macedonians spoke the Doric dialect of the Greek language, just like the Spartans did. Later they adopted the language spoken by all the Greeks; what is known as Greek Koine. Scholars all over the world, who study the Greek of the Bible, are familiar with the Greek Koine. The region of Macedonia is full of the most remarkable Greek antiquities, that are all inscribed with Greek names. The King of Macedonia Alexander I (Alexander the Great is Alexander III) participated in the Olympic Games of the year 496 BCE. It should be stressed that only Greeks participated in the Olympic Games. When the Persians, under King Xerses, invaded Greece through Thrace, Macedonia and Thessaly (480 BCE, the Battle of Thermopylae) King Alexander I gave to the Greeks of southern Greece precious information about the movements of the Persian troops because, he said, I am Greek, too. In the year 356 BCE, King Philip, the father of Alexander the Great, participated in the Olympic Games and won! Under Philip, Macedonia was the unifying force for all the ancient Greeks. The conflict between the Athenian orator Demos- thenes and King Philip of Macedonia was the conflict between two different political systems: the democratic regime of the Athenian city-state and the regime of kingship in Macedonia. The scholars who study the history of the Christian faith believe that there were three factors that helped Christianity spread. The first was the "Pax Romana" (Roman Peace). Order had been established and people felt safe to travel. The second factor was the famous Roman roads that made travelling easy. The third, and most decisive factor, was a universal language and this was the Greek language. Who made the Greek language a universal language? The answer is Alexander the Great and his successors, the Hellenistic kings. Hellenistic means Greek in a much broader sense. Everything Christians know about their faith came down written in Greek. It was a great privilege and honour for the Greeks to give their mother tongue to the new religion. The principles of the new religion had to be written down and interpreted. The Word (Logos) of God was written down and analysed by the "Logos" of the Greeks. The whole New Testament was written in Greek and it was the 3rd century BCE. when the Old Testament was translated into Greek. This was wonderful for the Old Testament, because many people could read, understand and appreciate it. We can realise the importance of the universal language, if we think how difficult our lives nowadays would have been without the universality of the English language! Alexander the Great brought the Greek civilisation all the way to India. What does "Greek civilisation" mean? In the cities he founded – and he called all of them "Alexandria" after his name, - he built libraries, agoras, theatres, gymnasiums, stadiums. He brought Homer (Homeric Achilles was his hero), Thucydides, the great tragedians, Plato, Aristotle (his teacher) to the countries he conquered. He believed in the mixture of civilisations, by encouraging his soldiers to marry women of the lands he Philip II of Macedon conquered. He considered all humans to be equal and he believed that there was only one criterion to judge a human being by: virtue. What do the Scriptures say about Macedonia? The most authentic source of information is the Acts of the Apostles, written by Luke the Evangelist. Luke was a Greek doctor and apostle Paul's most beloved, faithful and dedicated companion till the end, when he softened Paul's last moments in a Roman prison. Luke, describing Paul's second missionary journey tells us about Paul's visit to Thessaloniki. "And some of them be- lieved and consorted with Paul and Silas and of the devout GREEKS a great multitude and of the chief women not a few." (Acts of the Apostles 17:4). "Therefore many of them believed, also of honorable women, who were GREEKS and of men not a few." (Acts of the Apostles 17,12). Thessaloniki was the sister of Alexander the Great and the city was built by her husband Kassandros, one of Alexander's generals, in the year 315 BCE. Since then, Thessaloniki has been the main city of Macedonia and of northern Greece. The people who lived in what they call the state of ‘Macedonia’, and for the needs of this short article we will call it the state of Skopje (Skopje is the capital of this state) are mostly Slavs. The Slavs appear on the stage of history in the Balkans in the 6th century CE. They invaded Greece several times, they caused problems but they left nothing behind. Not even a tombstone! Later, the Byzantine Empire put the Slavs under the sphere of its influence, by Christianising them. For the Byzantine Empire, the best way to control the new ethnicities that appeared at the periphery of the empire was to Christianise them. It was two Greek scholars from Thessaloniki, monks Methodius and Cyril, who Christianised the Slavs. It was Cyril who created a Greek-based alphabet (Cyrillic) for the Slavs to write the Bible in. The state of Skopje as ‘Macedonia’ has nothing to do with the historical truth. It is a tremendous distortion of history and a very recent communist creation, dating back to 1944. That was the year when Tito of Yugoslavia, encouraged by Stalin, decided in the most arbitrary way to call South Serbia ‘Macedonia’. Tito's goal was, by using the name, to claim Macedonia from Greece, make it communist and thus have an outlet to the Aegean and the Mediterranean Sea. The next step Tito made was to call the people of this state ‘Macedonians’. There is not an ethnic group of people called Macedonians. Macedonian is synonymous with Greekness. Alexander the Great is a Macedonian Greek and not a Thessalian Greek or a Peloponnesian Greek and so on. From the geographical point of view, part of historical Macedonia is inside the state of Skopje. This, of course, does not make the people of this state Macedonians. A small part of historical Macedonia is in Bulgaria, but the Bulgarians never claimed to be Macedonians! At the same time a written language was ‘created’ and they called it ‘Macedonian’ language. The people of the state of Skopje claim origin from the ancient time, they claim to be descendants of Alexander the Great and there is nothing written in their new language before 1944. Could one claim that these people had been completely illiterate for thousands of years? If we examine the maps of the National Geographic magazine, the ones issued before 1944, we do not find in the area any country called ‘Macedonia’. It is very sad and most unfortunate that they teach their children since their babyhood that they are descendants of Alexander the Great. They follow von Goebels' (Hitler's propaganda man) doctrine that "the bigger the lie, the easier it is to be believed". To say that Alexander the Great is not Greek is not just a distortion of History. It is more than ridiculous and there are limits in the ridiculous. This is far beyond any limits. References Herodotus: History, Clio, 56 Hesiod: Theogony VI, 1,2.
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