Take the 2-minute tour ×
History Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for historians and history buffs. It's 100% free, no registration required.

There seems to be even amongst some Historians and even this forum an unclear approach to Hitler and his Religion or the lack there of is there any clear history that establishes Hitler's religious Views? I am aware of his public statements of his Christianity and his use of Christianity as a source for his hatred of Jews put there still seems to be sources which state that it was a show too eventually reach world domination and take over the world and remove the church from within the Reich is there any proof to or against it? Article Here

share|improve this question

closed as not a real question by Drux, Mark C. Wallace, Joe, Steven Drennon Feb 19 '13 at 5:31

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

    
He was a Catholic, what proof you need? –  Anixx Feb 17 '13 at 7:35
2  
If I had to make a guess among established religions I would guess Buddhism (e.g. Wagner had planned a relevant opera). One could also argue that to some extent Hitler must have seen himself as the founder of a new "religion", perhaps with Hegel's World Spirit as god am himself as his prophet. –  Drux Feb 17 '13 at 7:44
5  
@Anixx, Couldn't someone turn that around and say "he was atheist, what proof do you need?" We are a history forum, we need sources, we need proof. –  Russell Feb 17 '13 at 8:55
    
@Russell he self-describes himself as Catholic, he was baptised as Catholic, he attended Catholic mass. He said he will be ever Catholic and will not change the confession. –  Anixx Feb 17 '13 at 15:35
1  
All the material is in the wikipedia article you cited. All I can see this question does is poll people from their slant on this contentious issue and it feels more like the brief for an essay project. As for me, I'd say the evidence "presents a conflicting picture of a man who appears spiritual and yet against organized religion". –  Nathan Cooper Feb 17 '13 at 16:09

3 Answers 3

Hitler definitively believed in some form of deity, and also believed, that God send him to Earth to rule it and get rid of the Jews and other "lesser humans".

The folkish-minded man, in particular, has the sacred duty, each in his own denomination, of making people stop just talking superficially of God's will, and actually fulfill God's will, and not let God's word be desecrated. For God's will gave men their form, their essence and their abilities. Anyone who destroys His work is declaring war on the Lord's creation, the divine will. - Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf Vol. 2 Chapter 10

He was raised catholic, and used Christianity and Catholic church to his advantage, however it isn't clear, if he had considered catholic or christian himself, or was just using this to take control over people. Hitler definitively wasn't atheist, but we aren't sure if he was a christian, or believed in other form of deity.

[Edit]

If you want more objective analysis look here What were Hitler's religious views? and here Was Hitler a Catholic, an Atheist, or otherwise? From the end If it is possible to conclude on such a complex subject, it would appear that Hitler was not an atheist, nor was he a Catholic.

share|improve this answer
    
Could you please identify some sources, esp. since you claim definite knowledge on some aspects. –  Drux Feb 17 '13 at 8:45
    
Couldn't find the original source where was this topic analyzed, but it was based on Hitler's quotations from Mein Kampf and his speeches, some of them you can find here Adolf Hitler Quotations: Adolf Hitler on Religion, God, and Christianity –  tikend Feb 17 '13 at 8:50
1  
Well, without passing final judgment, it seems that these quotes were selected with an agenda, i.e. dissociating Hitler and atheism. I think you should (ahem) definitely remove the words "definitely" from your answer :) –  Drux Feb 17 '13 at 8:53
1  
Write it up as a concise/improved answer, and even I'll happily upvote :) E.g. I'd be curious to find evidence for "[Hitler believed that] God send him to Earth to rule it and get rid of the Jews". It's one of your current claims. –  Drux Feb 17 '13 at 9:37
1  
The folkish-minded man, in particular, has the sacred duty, each in his own denomination, of making people stop just talking superficially of God's will, and actually fulfill God's will, and not let God's word be desecrated. For God's will gave men their form, their essence and their abilities. Anyone who destroys His work is declaring war on the Lord's creation, the divine will. - Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf Vol. 2 Chapter 10 –  tikend Feb 17 '13 at 9:44

I see Adolf Hitler more in a materialistic than a religious tradition. He seemed to hold largely instrumental, secularist views on religions, and from this perspective occasionally had quasi-benign things to say also about Jewish religion. The following quote (from Brigitte Hamann's Hitler's Vienna: A Dictator's Apprenticeship) is from communication by Hitler to Otto Wagener in 1930:

Through Moses the Jewish people received a rule for life and living one's life that was elevated to a religion which was entirely tailored toward the essence of one's race, and simply and clearly, without dogmas and dubious rules of faith, soberly and absolutely realistically contains what serve the future and self-preservation of the children of Israel. Everything is geared towards the well-being of one's own people, nothing toward consideration of others ... we no doubt have to recognize with admiration this incredible strength of the Jews' preservation of their race.

Perhaps his own religion (if there was any) was an odd blend e.g. of Germanic (as in Nibelungen), Christian (as in his native culture), Hindu (as in Aryans and Vedic traditions), and Buddhist (perhaps as in earlier comment) fragments. Overall, I think this is a question without a clear single answer.

share|improve this answer
    
-1 What connection to Hindu whatsoever? –  Anixx Feb 17 '13 at 15:38
2  
Notice that I qualified this statement with "perhaps". With this qualification, it seems to me that the Nazis had this crazy belief into Aryan ancestors and FWIK there is a relationship between Aryans and Hinduism (notice e.g. the Nazi's use of the swastika symbol). Further into speculation, I imagine that Hitler could have identified with the top tier in the Hindu caste system, with its possible links to, again, Aryans. –  Drux Feb 17 '13 at 18:07
2  
+1 but I don't think the quote you gave is a "good thing" he says about Judaism. At most it's an extremely underhanded compliment. –  Felix Goldberg Feb 18 '13 at 12:18
    
@FelixGoldberg you are very right: what may look like a good thing from a Hitler's perspective need not be so from any decent angle. I'll rephrase accordingly (and will also add a reference to Vedic tradition to perhaps better account for Anixx' comment). –  Drux Feb 18 '13 at 18:59

Hitler was baptised Catholic. Over whole his life he attended the services. He resused to change the faith and always said he was Catholic.

Nevertheless, his faith was not that sincere. For example, he was aware that Catholic doctrine contradicts scientific facts (quote from Mein Kampf):

Here again the Catholic Church has a lesson to teach us. Though sometimes, and often quite unnecessarily, its dogmatic system is in conflict with the exact sciences and with scientific discoveries, it is not disposed to sacrifice a syllable of its teachings. It has rightly recognized that its powers of resistance would be weakened by introducing greater or less doctrinal adaptations to meet the temporary conclusions of science, which in reality are always vacillating. And thus it holds fast to its fixed and established dogmas which alone can give to the whole system the character of a faith. And that is the reason why it stands firmer today than ever before. We may prophesy that, as a fixed pole amid fleeting phenomena, it will continue to attract increasing numbers of people who will be blindly attached to it the more rapid the rhythm of changing phenomena around it.

He admired the Christian fanaticism:

The greatness of Christianity did not lie in attempted negotiations for compromise with any similar philosophical opinions in the ancient world, but in its inexorable fanaticism in preaching and fighting for its own doctrine.

He had some regrets about the Christian methods:

Each one of us today may regret the fact that the advent of Christianity was the first occasion on which spiritual terror was introduced into the much freer ancient world, but the fact cannot be denied that ever since then the world is pervaded and dominated by this kind of coercion and that violence is broken only by violence and terror by terror.

He believed that there was no fundamental difference between Catholic and Protestant faith:

The two Christian denominations look on with indifference at the profanation and destruction of a noble and unique creature who was given to the world as a gift of God's grace. For the future of the world, however, it does not matter which of the two triumphs over the other, the Catholic or the Protestant.

In conclusion we can say that he was a practicing Catholic who did believe in God but did not believe in every Christian dogma that contradicted the current science.

share|improve this answer
4  
So you say Hitler was a "practicing Catholic"? When was the last time he went to Mass? When was the last time he confessed to a priest? –  Felix Goldberg Feb 18 '13 at 12:21
3  
I've just reconsulted the Kershaw and Fest biographies: there is no mention of a priest for the private scene of Hitler's wedding to Eva Braun in 1945 (the civil wedding was performed by Walter Wagner, a Nazi official). Sure, this was during the final calamity in the Berlin bunker (the Hitlers would commit suicide on that very afternoon), but one would think that an autocratic head of state like Hitler could have summoned up a priest in any situation, if indeed he had deemed it important e.g. for reasons of private faith. –  Drux Feb 18 '13 at 19:22
    
Sorry, downvote: the conclusion really doesn't follow from the evidence you marshaled. –  Felix Goldberg Feb 19 '13 at 12:42

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.