The two authors namely Gross and Blackbourn made an account about German Catholicism in the 18th Century. Their works: “The Strange Case of the Nun in the Dungeon and Apparitions of the Virgin Mary in Bismarckian Germany”, respectively are expositions of how the noblest human acts and beliefs can be turned into atrocities and monstrous behaviors if that self giving is overshadowed with power or other ulterior motives. Freedom of Religion is man’s greatest endeavor to fulfill his end. However, if the means to achieve the end becomes evil it no longer serves man’s purpose but becomes destruction to man’s life and being.
In the case of the nun Barbara, it is so unlikely that someone needs to be locked up for 21 years simply because that woman can not live her state in life. The vocation to celibacy is a free gift and not given to all. In fact, the best place for a woman is still in the home. Is the nun in the dungeon really insane or just maltreated? What is the real reason why she was in the nunnery? Again, in those questions it is no longer a reason if she is a madwoman but her lack of freedom and those people around her who were influenced by evil or may used coercion as force needed to be looked in depth.
What made this people think that way, and what kind of a leader or a superior does her congregation have? Was it is because her time was during the Dark Ages in Christianity where people are kind of confused? Could it be also a time in the history of mankind that the female gender is not absolutely understood? On the accounts given by the authors especially that of Blackbourn, when he tried to gather information of the German Madonna, he pointed out on the common beliefs of that time and was able to conclude that the apparitions is not real.
This is another lesson to bear in mind that popular beliefs are not always the bearer of truth. Human at the same time is so fallible, that if guided by a blind guide can be trapped into a pit. The two authors have manifested in their works that man to be rational must be free and knowledgeable of the truth. References Gross, Michael B. (2000), The Strange Case of the Nun in the Dungeon : German Studies Review [Electronic Version]. Retrieved 22 February 2008 from, thttp://links. jstor. org/sici? sici=0149-7952%28200002%2923%3A1%3C69%3ATSCOTN%3E2. 0. CO%3B2-N Blackbourn, David, Apparitions of the Virgin Mary in Bismarckian Germany