La critica all’argomento del ‘consensus gentium’ in Christian Francken e François de La Mothe Le Vayer
Christian Francken criticized the argument ʻConsensus gentiumʼ for the first time in Breve Colloquium Iesuiticum (1579), claiming that the similarity between the Christian rituals and Eastern ones was due to the human origin of both. The need for an unquestionable criterion of truth drove him later to discover the ancient skepticism, and in Disputatio […] de incertitudine religionis Christianae (1593) Francken denied that ʻConsensus gentiumʼ could be an evidence for the existence of God. François de La Mothe Le Vayer in the Dialogues faits à l’imitation des anciens (1630-33) dealt with similar topics. He showed the inadequacy of dogmatism and the necessity of skepticism, faced with the endless variety of customs and religions in the world. This is only one example of ideas spreading from the theological debates of the Radical Reformation to the thought of Libertines, until the Enlightenment.
Keywords: Consensus gentium • Libertinism • Skepticism • Francken • Radical Reformation