Nihilists is the name given to a sect of German mystics who flourished in the 14th century, and, according to Ruysbroek, held that neither God nor themselves, heaven nor hell, action nor rest, good nor evil, have any real existence. They denied God and the work of Christ, Scripture, sacraments- everything. God was nothing; they were nothing; the universe was nothing. "Some hold doctrines such as these in secret," adds Ruysbroek, "and conform outwardly for fear. Others make them the pretext for every kind of vice and insolent insubordination." SEE NIHILISM. Sometimes the term Nihilists is used to denote Annihilationists (q.v.).

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