THE ISSUE OF HUMAN LABOUR IN THE CATHOLIC AND CALVINIST DOCTRINES
In the paper I try to refute the theses of a German lawyer and pioneer of sociology, Max Weber (1864–1920) and a Polish political scientist, Grzegorz Rydlewski (born 1953) that the Roman Catholic Church appreciated prayer and contemplation more than work which was suspected, according to its teaching, to be a punishment for the original sin and also that Calvinism, especially its Anglo-Saxon version called puritanism, has contributed to a birth of capitalism by changing an opinion on work and patterns of its exercising. I prove that the only differences between both religious doctrines with regard to human work were the admissibility of lending money on interest and practical syllogism which means inferring from results of one’s work, who is predestined to be saved. Therefore I think that the Reformation was not the origin of capitalism, all the more some capitalistic institutions (banks, credits, bills, outwork, manufactures, partnerships, family-owned farms) already existed in the 12th–14th centuries in northern Italy, the Netherlands and Hanzeatic cities. I quote, as sources, apart from the Bible, the writings of prominent theologians of both confessions (John Calvin, Thomas Aquinas) and catechisms from the Middle Ages and modernity as well as elaborations in the fi elds of economy, history, political science, sociology, theology.