Egor Ligachev Dies at 100

Egor Ligachev, leader of the “conservative” wing of the CPSU under Gorbachev, died yesterday at the age of 100. He was a teetotaller who took good care of his health. The cause of death was bilateral pneumonia, though his son says it wasn’t COVID-19.

By all accounts, he was a decent and uncorrupt man, e.g. see this in a blog post by elections blogger and oppositionist Alexander Kireev, in which he imagines the outcome of a Soviet election in 1990 (coincidentally written just a few days ago):

I met Ligachev in Moscow not far from the State Duma building in 2004. He was already a former deputy at that time, but he walked towards her even at a surprisingly vigorous step for an 84-year-old man. I greeted him politely, because no one paid any attention to him. We talked a little: he was even glad that a young man like me knows him well. He gave me his book and wrote. Let me draw your attention: a member of the top leadership of the USSR, the former head of the Tomsk region (besides, under him at that time oil fields were developed in the region!) Went to the State Duma on foot. Maybe he lived within walking distance, I’m not sure. Yes, and it was in the summer, the weather was good. Of course, he must have had enough money for a taxi, but he still walked on foot. He was dressed simply, one might say in the Soviet way: an ordinary shirt and trousers. So it would have come out in 1980, not in 2004: no one would have paid attention. It seems to me that it was clear from everything that he was living the life of an ordinary Moscow pensioner, and not some kind of millionaire. Can you imagine this for the current leaders of Russia?

Yes, that’s quite hard to imagine. But it didn’t exactly do Ligachev or the classical Marxist-Leninist ideals he espoused a lot of good. He did always come across as a damp rag to me. He played a crucial role in promoting Gorbachev as the successor to Andropov, and supported him until he felt that perestroika had gone too far in the direction of Social Democracy; then he settled for writing complaints to Gorbachev, which were “ignored” and eventually led to his dismissal from the Politburo in July 1990. The author of the famous phrase “Boris, you are wrong” had also played a central role in promoting him into the Party’s Central Committee in the first place.

So, just as clueless on judging people as he was on understanding market economics:

One of the most memorable anecdotes from Stephen Cohen’s Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives is where he recounts a visit by Egor Ligachev, probably the second man after Gorbachev in the late 1980s USSR, to New York, in which he amazed his interlocutors by repeatedly asking who was responsible for organizing the food supply to the city.

Nor did he have the spine to support the August coup against Gorbachev. With limp-wristed “hardliners” like this, it is not as much of a surprise that the USSR fell apart.

Well, not limp-wristed except as concerns Russians and their self-determination, at any rate. He hated expressions of Russian nationalism, criticizing the KPRF’s turn to a populist pro-ethnic Russian position during the 2010s.

The blogger denalt has gathered some quotes he said on this matter from 2012:

The Pskov regional committee of the Communist Party, headed by him in the New Year’s address to the residents of the region, called on“ Russian to the Russian – help! ”. If this is not a manifestation of nationalism, so what is it, where is the “fierce struggle against the vulgarization of the Russian idea by nationalism?”

The divided Russian people arose as a result of the destruction of the Soviet Union, the dismemberment of the Soviet people. By and large, it should be primarily about the divided Soviet people. The reunification of the Russian people, like any other fraternal people, can be resolved only when the Soviet people are restored on the basis of the alliance of Russians with other nationalities, in the process of building socialism, eradicating nationalism and chauvinism. ”
… only Union 2.0. No Russia!

As for the labor migrants, which are referred to in the Party’s Address to the Russian people in a very unfriendly manner, without any “caution and prudence ”, then it is time to stop all kinds of vilification against them, accuse them of “settling in primordially Russian territories ”. After all, this is a part of the divided Soviet people, moreover, mainly the most disadvantaged … Apparently, it is necessary to thoroughly deal with migrants, their organization and political education.

They continue to insist that the Russian people are a state-forming people, thereby imposing the idea of ​​its unity. Although it is known that the state in a class-antagonistic society is formed not by the people, but by classes. After all, these are the basics of Marxism-Leninism.

Tsarism suppressed non-Russian peoples, sowed mistrust, discord between them, and equally instilled alienation among the Russians towards them. Native languages ​​were in the corral, to the point that it was forbidden to publish newspapers in them, and to teach in their native language in schools. The peoples of Russia were In a word, as it was said: in tsarist Russia there were two misfortunes: below – the power of darkness, and above – the darkness of power.
… In a word, if the tsarist autocracy was not, in the full sense, a prison of peoples, then, according to V.I. Lenin, it included “a bloody past, when the Russia of the capitalist oppressors played the role of an executioner over other peoples.

So no wonder that multi-national liberals (“noviops”) tend to have a bit of a soft spot for this sovok fossil.

Conversely, I suspect, this hints at a reason for a significant part of the revulsion against the “conservative” wing of the Soviet establishment on the part of ethnic Russians in the late 1980s.

Anatoly Karlin is a transhumanist interested in psychometrics, life extension, UBI, crypto/network states, X risks, and ushering in the Biosingularity.

 

Inventor of Idiot’s Limbo, the Katechon Hypothesis, and Elite Human Capital.

 

Apart from writing booksreviewstravel writing, and sundry blogging, I Tweet at @powerfultakes and run a Substack newsletter.

Comments

  1. Please keep off topic posts to the current Open Thread.

    If you are new to my work, start here.

    Commenting rules. Please note that anonymous comments are not allowed.

  2. Well, duh. Of course, even after 70 years the mob will still be stupid enough to be swayed by nationalism and religion, what’s new? These may (rarely) be manipulated masterfully, as by the current Russian government. That is no justification, however, for your expression of sympathy for both of these monsters.

  3. Dan Hayes says

    Anatoly,
    May I be presumptuous enough to enquire of your opinion about the late Prof Stephen Cohen. The reason I am asking was that his appearances on a weekly US radio broadcast (John Batchelor Show) completely changed my perspective (previously jingoistic prejudices) about Russia vis-à-vis USA. I became a big Cohen fan despite his association (marriage and otherwise) with the doctrinaire left-wing Nation magazine. And he appeared to me to be a Gorbachev fanboy. Needless to say, any response would be very much appreciated.
    Dan Hayes
    P.S. And continued good fortune to you and Impresario Ron!

  4. Bashibuzuk says

    I suspect, this hints at a reason for a significant part of the revulsion against the “conservative” wing of the Soviet establishment on the part of ethnic Russians in the late 1980s.

    This is correct. Among those who supported the Perestroika, either in Russia or in other former Soviet republics, a significant part did it on nationalist grounds. Russian nationalists were betrayed and then defeated and destroyed by Yeltsin and Putin’s regimes.

    In the other, now independent, former Soviet countries, nationalism ended up as an important, often dominant, ideological motivation of the ruling elites. This will lead in due time to a final structuring of national consciousness for all ethnic groups in the former Soviet realm, with Russians being the notable exception.

    For some obscure reason, Russians are expected to stay unaware of their national interests and stay subservient to the sole interests of pseudo-patriotic “Russian” elites, which exploit Russian people and other native ethnic groups of the Rus Fed. But this is if course also the case in most Western countries, where the ethnic White majority ethnicities, forming the core of the “titular ” nations, are expected to only serve as a kind of cement for a multicultural edifice.

    An edifice built without any concern for their long-term interests or even demographic survival. An edifice used by corrupt, Cosmopolitan globalized elites, of which Putin and his cronies are a dialectical part and piece on the “Eastern Front ” of the exploitation and spoliation of the global middle and lower classes by the Super Rich Cabal and their henchmen.

    Perhaps camarade Ligachev would have agreed with this last sentence. His death is of course a sign of the times: a sign of the final and overdue demise of the classical Marxism-Leninism. Let’s hope that “class consciousness ” of the Marxist ideology will everywhere be replaced by “national consciousness ” and “race realism “.

    That the masses around the world will awake and arise in a nationslist defense of their future against the parasitic Cosmopolitan Exploiters. Let’s hope that the era of the “tools of mass-distraction” will not end up destroying the ethnic fabric of mankind, but instead will only render the survival of Globalism impossible. As the era of Soviet “tools of mass-propaganda” made impossible the survival of the anti-national Soviet regime of which camarade Ligachev was a typical representative.

  5. Bashibuzuk says

    Just an example of what I described above:

    Google Translated from the Russian source without further correction:

    Among the numerous facts from the criminal biography of Vagharshak Sarksyan, a raider-deputy of the Perm Regional Legislative Assembly, known in the Kama region, the story of the large embezzlement of funds from the federal budget and the budget of Motovilikhinskiye Zavody JSC, whose shareholder Sarksyan was for a long time, even in 2011-2016, stands out. years he was the executive director of the enterprise.

    For the uninitiated, recall that “MZ” is not just a plant, but a strategic defense enterprise engaged in the production of rocket and artillery weapons, including multiple launch rocket systems “Smerch” and “Tornado-G”, and produces pipes as civilian products … The main shareholder of MZ is the state corporation Rostec.

    So, as a result of the fictitious inclusion in the process of supplying raw materials and materials (ferroalloys and rolled metal) to the enterprises of “MZ” of intermediary firms affiliated with V. Sarksyan and his accomplice – the director of LLC “MZ Kamastal” A. Kostarev, for the period 2011-2012 Over the years, the cost of the purchases made turned out to be many times overstated – by no less than 514 million rubles, and the total amount of tax evasion of A. Kostarev’s enterprise involved in the chain exceeded 78 million rubles, which was confirmed by inspections by the tax authorities.

    Then it was interesting. Attempts by the investigation to challenge the refusal of the regional prosecutor’s office to initiate a criminal case reached the level of the Deputy Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation V. Grin and the then Prosecutor General Y. Chaika in 2016, but the materials were returned for additional verification. Since during this time, A.Kostarev, who sensed a danger to his freedom, managed to pay off the tax arrears of MZ Kamastal, along with penalties and fines, the case against him was terminated on non-rehabilitating grounds.

    But any attempts by the top manager of “Rostec” and the investigation to return to the budget of the enterprise fraudulently withdrawn from its budget more than 500 million rubles (despite the personal written appeal of the head of “Rostec” Sergei Chemezov to the head of the IC Alexander Bastrykin), ultimately resisted in the reluctance of the investigative bodies of the Ministry of Internal Affairs to initiate criminal proceedings on these and other facts of illegal actions of officials, which led to colossal losses.

    As a result, Sarksyan himself and his other accomplices in fraudulent business schemes escaped any responsibility for what they had done, and Sarksyan / n later transferred his part of MZ shares – 15 percent – to Tera LLC, 100 percent of the shares of which, in his turn, previously belonged to Sarksyan, and now the director and founder of this society is a certain Ararat Makaelyan. Do you have vague doubts about this?

    Well, the “Motovilikhinskie Zavody” themselves are now in a controlled bankruptcy procedure, if anything. And the deputy of the Perm Legislative Assembly Vagharshak Sarksyan, meanwhile, is going for the third term of his deputy. And – again from the “United Russia”. There is such a party (crime poker games). “Corruption? No, you haven’t heard of that. “

    Always watch money and power plays, discard the hype and propaganda.

  6. “class consciousness ” of the Marxist ideology will everywhere be replaced by “national consciousness ”

    You need both. Nationalism without social policies for one’s own people is a hollow idea. It’s the lack of economic solidarity by the elites for their own white, European, normal-family people that destroyed West. It destroyed Trump when he talked nonsense about “socialist evil” and “booming markets” – enough working-class males took it for the bulls..t that it was.

    There will never be a successful national state based on free-market capitalism. People want stability, they want stuff, they are not stupid enough to believe that oligarchs care about them. West is run by oligarchs, you hesitate to call them who they are, but you live in oligarchies.

    The stupidity of conservatives who push liberal economics – libertarian is just an asshole liberal, who passionately denounce socialism will get them somewhere is the core issue in the West. The morons who repeat nonsense about “class” and “Venezuela”, and how “socialism has never worked” are the ones responsible for the open borders, globalism, and destroyed lives of the young. They may deny it, but they in effect worship the oligarchy.

  7. So no wonder that multi-national liberals (“noviops”) tend to have a bit of a soft spot for this sovok fossil.

    Conversely, I suspect, this hints at a reason for a significant part of the revulsion against the “conservative” wing of the Soviet establishment on the part of ethnic Russians in the late 1980s.

    Too often enough, the stated options sadly reveal limits. Somewhat reminded of the Brzezinski versus Talbott and Nuland versus Rojansky options.

  8. Bashibuzuk says

    You need both. Nationalism without social policies for one’s own people is a hollow idea. It’s the lack of economic solidarity by the elites for their own white, European, normal-family people that destroyed West. It destroyed Trump when he talked nonsense about “socialist evil” and “booming markets” – enough working-class males took it for the bulls..t that it was.

    https://www.britannica.com/topic/corporatism

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solidarism

    https://theconversation.com/how-to-resist-the-political-rise-of-the-global-nativist-70173

    This last link should be read a contrario. One should strongly wish for what this globalist propaganda piece decries.

    Marx and Engels were the anti-European agent of the British Imperialism. Their International was the precursors of the modern globalist Cabal.

  9. demografie says

    Yep, somehow Marx ideology did not wreck Anglo-Saxon countries, only their competitors.
    Also, what would happen, if Russia have leader like Ilham Aliyev.
    Russians get people like Ligachev, who are born with the inferioty complex against West. West tried to genocide all of Russia 2 times last century, yet Russian elites want to be partners to West. I am not really smart, but If somehow try to hurt me, I would do some precautions. I do not advocate war, but rather have healthy suspicion.

  10. I think Stephen Cohen’s grasp on modern US-Russian relations was very balanced and a needed voice. Losing his voice of moderation was very bad.

    There are issues on which agree and disagree with him on aspects of Soviet history. For instance, I sooner agree with him over someone like Daniel Treisman on whether the late USSR could have been reformed without crumbling apart (at least if it had harder men at the helm than Gorby or Ligachev). I disagree with some other points, e.g. he whitewashes Bukharin far too much.

    PS. The bulk of what I know of his views comes from his book Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives, published in 2009.

  11. Russian nationalists were betrayed and then defeated and destroyed by Yeltsin and Putin’s regimes.

    Russian nationalists are doing well under Putin’s regime, the last time they had more de facto influence was under Nicholas II.

    Some marginal freaks aren’t doing so well, admittedly: https://insomniacresurrected.com/2021/05/06/maniacs-the-cult-of-killers/ But I can’t say I care much for those kinds of nationalists.

  12. songbird says

    I’ve always found the use of the term “conservative” interesting in the context of the late stage USSR.

    There’s certainly a parallelism if you think of them as being the losing side. But I wonder who first applied the term. Did Russians use it? (or something like “reactionary?”) Or was it neoliberal academics in the West?

    It is curious to contrast with “hard-liner.” But, maybe, one could argue that the coup against Gorbi was limp-wristed.

    Another way it is interesting is how Communism was a sort of poor cousin to Liberalism – both systems had a universalist vision, at their core.

  13. Bashibuzuk says

    I wrote a couple of comments about these guys a few weeks ago. But some far right people in Russia have written about the “maniacal killers” being jist another FSB set-up against the radical nationalist youth.

    To prove your point about the ethnic Russian nationalists doing great under Putin (who has often himself described Russian nationalism as a danger and Rus Fed as a multicultural state) you should perhaps interview some serious people from the Russian far right. That is, if they accept going public about the whole ethnic Russians’ situation in the last few years.

    I doubt many would be vocal though…

  14. “Serious people” and “Russian far right” are mutually exclusive categories.

  15. reiner Tor says

    I remember that reformers were called “left” and those who wanted to preserve the system “right.” The August 1991 coup attempt was a right wing coup in that parlance.

  16. being jist another FSB set-up against the radical nationalist youth.

    They should not be referred to as nationalists, they love Hitler more than Russia.

  17. Bashibuzuk says

    Sure, unlike cosmopolitan Russian Transhumanists. How understandable.

    Interestingly, you are actually proving my point about Russian nationalists having become an utterly marginalized and suppressed social category under Yeltsinoid Putin’s regime.

    Russian nationalism has been suppressed for the reasons I cited in my first comment on this thread. It has been suppressed because the current RusFed (or perhaps we should better write ResFed as in Ресурсная Федерация) regime is best exemplified by my second comment and the story of ethnic minority nepotism it describes.

    That is, this regime, despite its “Muh St – George’s Ribbon Patriotism ” is way closer to Andropov than it is to Stolypin. Both in social and personal terms. Those in the know about Abdropov and Stolypin’s lifes and attempted influence on Russian destiny will probably understand my point.

    I am sure comrade Ligachev would have fully understood what I am hinting to and disagreed with the thrust of my comments.

    Just like you do. Which is quite amusing…

  18. Bashibuzuk says

    These kids are debased LARPers used by the FSB to justify keeping the pressure up on what is left of the true Russian nationalist circles. Scare the Sovok Babushkas and the (((Echo of Moscow))) liberal demshizoids with the maniacal skinhead serial killers drooling to turn RusFed into an evil armored Matryoshka’s incarnation of a Slavic Third Reich with a Left Hand Path M8L8TH twist.

    Done a month or so before May the 9th / Victory Day. Pathetically predictable, Comrade Major. And the fact that Karlin pretends to believe this sad FSB clowning is all we need to know about Anatoly’s other takes on the RusFed’s society.

    https://cs7.pikabu.ru/images/big_size_comm/2018-11_6/1543600685196163448.jpg

  19. reiner Tor says

    I once heard a black metal band called M8L8TH. It was a Russian band I believe, though it could be Ukrainian or maybe Belarusian. It wasn’t bad, but somehow I haven’t listened to it much.

  20. Coconuts says

    Another way it is interesting is how Communism was a sort of poor cousin to Liberalism – both systems had a universalist vision, at their core.

    Communism is what happens when liberalism starts using steroids, eating only raw red meat, sleeping on a bed of nails and having visions.

  21. Bashibuzuk says

    It’s Russian White supremacist Black Metal: sounds funny, right?. What’s even funnier, is that M8L8TH guys being extremists they are (of the Varg Vikernes persuasion) found nothing better than to join the Ukrainian White Nationalist fighters in the Donbass war.

    They were among the founding members of the Misanthropic Division and were connected to Biletskyi and his Azov battalion. In a sense, both Misanthropic Division and Azov are byproducts of Ukrainian Kharkov Ultras football hooligans listening too much to M8L8TH and perhaps reading a little Dugin. I am of course being facetious and sarcastic, but it’s actually hard to tell whether it’s the Ukrainian Neonazi who influenced Russian ones, or the other way around.

    In fact, Neonazi groupuscules worldwide are today more of a White International with a Left Hand Path persuasion, than real ethnic nationalist movements. It is of course quite convenient for the Globalist TPTB to be faced by this kind of groups, which will never go further than artistic ultraviolence and intellectual extremism (internet autistic skinhead geekery). That is, if someone (like Ukrainian oligarchs, 3/4 of which are Jewish) wouldn’t find it useful to pump some moneys into these poor lost souls.

    Then, just like ISIS attracting all kinds of Islamic World misfits and pariahs to Takfiri extremism, they could be used as cannon fodder in Globalist gangster turf wars. Because all these people are basically tools, pawns trying to become chess queen. Although of course some of them might also be queens in the other sense of the term (Sarc. )

    That is why it is genius on the FSB behalf to present them as a kind of imminent menace against Rus Fed interests. A cool story it all makes…

  22. Done a month or so before May the 9th / Victory Day.

    Actually, I first heard about the arrests in March. It had nothing to do with the Victory Day, and quite frankly, the Russian media failed miserably to report any coherent information on what is happening. My information literally comes from Strana.ua and

    War Gonzo

    . Not exactly the sources your babushka would generally read or even know about. So if you think this was an information campaign by the Kremlins, the Kremlin failed miserably to inform the public.

    Personally, I think the FSB found these Nazis while investigating Navalny and his drones. I have no reason to disbelieve that the Ukrainian secret service would be coaching anti-government Nazis because…

    1) Ukraine is a neonazi shithole
    2) Ukrainian elites do not hide the wish for regime change in Russia and the Nazis have proven very effective in the victory of the Maidan.

    Western secret services and governments want to create a Ukraine situation in Russia with a divided elite, and street fighters.

    Honestly, people who venerate Hitler deserve a smack even if they were fucking LARPers because they are disgusting.

  23. I once heard a black metal band called M8L8TH.

    They are Russians, who moved to Ukraine after the Maidan.

  24. Insomniac Resurrected says

    That is why it is genius on the FSB behalf to present them as a kind of imminent menace against Rus Fed interests. A cool story it all makes…

    The question is, why should the FSB tolerate some demented Hitler worshipers that hate the government?

  25. AnonFromTN says

    On the one hand, Ligachev put some resistance to traitors, including Gorby. On the other hand, his resistance was rather weak. Unlike many in the USSR elites, he did not steal anything, and was against the thieves in high places. That would have earned him respect, if he weren’t such a stickler for the hierarchy. He did not directly challenge Gorby simply because the scum outranked him. His other weakness was that, like all true believers, he was very limited intellectually. Being weak and dumb, he is an unlikely hero. More like a duped honest moron.

  26. Bashibuzuk says

    I take whatever comes from the FSB with a healthy dose of salt.

    Not being personally acquainted with these “terrible, horrible, satanic Nazis”, and not having a psychiatrist diploma among the “lengthy list of my academic regalia”, I cannot ensure that they are demented.

    What I know for sure is that FSB jailed people who were just normal Russian ethnic nationalists before and will probably do it again in the future.

    In Russia, if they want someone in jail, they will find a way to put her / him there.

    BTW, do you think that being a National Socialist and disliking Putin’s policies is enough a reason to get nabbed by the FSB ?

  27. The question is, why should the FSB tolerate some demented Hitler worshipers that hate the government?

    One reason might be western example, what may happen with society when this society start fighting with “Nazis” or racists or other communist invented boogeymen.

  28. Daniel Chieh says

    Ineffectual individuals with a heavy dose of lunacy clinging to failed and defeated systems of organization tend not to get much done in any world.

    Sure, unlike cosmopolitan Russian Transhumanists.

    Transhumanists accomplish quite a bit, and whatever their lunacy, can’t be said to be anti-adaptive to new challenges or opportunities.

  29. Bashibuzuk says

    Transhumanists accomplish quite a bit, and whatever their lunacy, can’t be said to be anti-adaptive to new challenges or opportunities.

    Past or future aren’t better or worse, they are connected. If someone cannot make a honest assessment of his past, then his future is built on false premises. To make one’s honest assessment of his past, one should (in my humble opinion) start with his own ancestors, their victories and defeats.

    None among us is an island and there is no blank state for human beings. If someone doesn’t care for the thousands of years that his lineage survived, fought and perhaps thrived, then one’s future success would be short lived.

    In short, better never buying one’s future by selling one’s past. The history of the last couple hundred years seems to at least teach us that.

  30. Daniel Chieh says

    Yeah, and this is clearly true because you’re using a device constructed in a manner that hadn’t been envisioned in the past, hitting buttons on a device made with material that never appears in nature and maintain the data on a form that’s completely agnostic to anything that appeared a few hundred years ago.

    The universe is full of the dead who failed to adapt. What worked in one environment, often doesn’t work in another, and the march of technology has sufficiently changed almost all aspects of reality. e.g. artificial wombs:

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/paper-review-artificial-wombs/

    This is a good idea from all sorts of ideological perspectives.

    Everyone: Immediate higher fertility rates in the countries that develop them, especially amongst well-educated women. This might cancel out dysgenic decline at a single stroke.

    Libertarians: People with the means to pay – that is, millionaires and especially billionaires – will no longer be bounded in their reproductive capacity by the biology of their female partner or by the culture of their society (generally, no polygamy). Since wealth is moderately correlated with IQ, this will be eugenic. That said, this might strike some as dystopian. Maybe one could start taxing additional artificial womb-grown offspring past the first five or ten? Then you’d get “offshore hatcheries.” Okay, I suppose that’s even more dystopian.

    Futurists: Combining artificial wombs with CRISPR gene-editing for IQ on a mass scale pretty much directly leads to a biosingularity.

  31. AnonFromTN says

    That right-left thing has nothing to do with Western right-left dichotomy (it’s a false dichotomy now in the West, but the terminology persists). Basically, conservatives like Ligachev, being less greedy, wanted to preserve the system where ordinary people got something, whereas “reformers” wanted to steal more than the system allowed, not giving a hoot about ordinary people. The win of “reformers” resulted in deaths of tens of millions of ordinary people in all post-Soviet “republics” (another false term, none of them was a republic, many still aren’t).

  32. Sure, unlike cosmopolitan Russian Transhumanists. How understandable.

    You are posting this as a permanent emigre in the Far Abroad, so probably not an optimal tack against me.

    Russian nationalism has been suppressed for the reasons I cited in my first comment on this thread.

    Hapless retards and autistics who can’t help posting swastikas and sucking GosDep/Ukrainian cock have been suppressed.

    Everybody else, including “ethnic crime” researchers like Dmitry Bobrov (whose case I highlighted some time back), have had all their charges dropped.

    Interestingly, you are actually proving my point about Russian nationalists having become an utterly marginalized and suppressed social category under Yeltsinoid Putin’s regime.

    That’s a good thing. We won.

    https://twitter.com/akarlin88/status/1391537103230615554

    https://twitter.com/akarlin88/status/1391401171655479297

  33. Mr. Hack says

    что в “национализме” останутся, по большому счету, только фрики, маргиналы, и свидомые.

    So who’s left? What specific branch of Russian nationalism do you represent Anatoly, and what do you stand for and what are you called? And why do you lop together the “svidomy” with the “freaks” and “marginals”?

  34. Mr. Hack says

    It would be even more enlightening if Anatoly would reply himself and frankly give a description of his supposed Russian nationalistic bend…I wouldn’t really query him about this, but after all even Putin reads his blog, and he must realize that he’s on some people’s radar as a “Russian nationalist”? Seriously, I don’t think that it’s out of place to ask these questions and expect to get a “Russian Reaction”? 🙂

  35. Commentator Mike says

    But I can’t say I care much for those kinds of nationalists.

    Those maniac killers sound like a bunch of lunatics. The quicker they’re apprehended and the harsher they’re treated the better all around.

  36. Well I’m Russian though i think longer timeline than nationalism. But adaptation is still high on the list 🙂

  37. Yep, same with people who venerate Lenin.

    Actually yes…

  38. Anatoly has understood that being a Russian nationalist in Russia is a self-defeating option. Therefore he opted out from his previous inclinations, just like he also turned against the pro-Trump deplorables last year.

    Where did I say I am no longer a Russian nationalist?

    I have previously noted that a large percentage of Russian nationalist demands have been de facto fulfilled over the past two years.

    Hence, a much larger percentage of nationalists who remain embittered are GosDep hirelings/dupes and Nazi larpers. That is a good thing.

  39. reiner Tor says

    I think it’s obvious that a Russian nationalist will not want the Russian government to give up a territory with an outright Russian ethnic majority. He would want racially/ethnically compatible people to assimilate to the Russian ethnicity. This predominantly means Belarusians and Ukrainians, but probably also Estonians or Latvians (provided that they are so inclined – the vast majority of them aren’t) or even other white European immigrants (expats). Depending on how racialist the nationalist in question is, his opinions on the assimilation of Tatars, Chechens, and especially complete racial aliens like Kazakhs or African immigrants will vary.

    In general, nationalists will want their ethnic groups to control as much their countries as possible, and want it to be as strong (and as big) as possible. There are tradeoffs, like annexing Poland would make Russia bigger, but the Polish population would be highly disloyal and so it would probably greatly weaken Russia, so in the present circumstances practically all Russian nationalists would oppose this. Similarly, moving Russia towards more ethnic Russian control would result in heightened ethnic tensions and perhaps civil wars in places like Bashkortostan or Chechnya, so might be undesirable for some Russian nationalists, while others would prefer it even at the cost of such internal disturbances. Overall giving up Crimea for example strikes me as a decidedly non-nationalist idea, for example.

  40. I think I have replied to you with this quite often already: https://www.unz.com/akarlin/russian-nationalism-101/

    * The cessation of political prosecutions for “hate speech” under Article 282. (done ✓)
    * An end to mass immigration from Central Asia.
    * The regathering of the Russian lands, including Belorussia, North Kazakhstan, Novorossiya, and Malorossiya.

    These three points are things that probably at least 80% and perhaps 90% of Russian nationalists will agree.

  41. Russian natural ressources will flow unimpeded in the global economy, enriching the transnational 1% and everyone concerned will sigh a little sigh of relief.

    Yes, that’s kind of how global trade works, now and centuries ago.

  42. For an anti-Sovietist, you have a strangely Soviet view of how the world works. Globalization has been a huge boon not just for First World elites, but for the workers and peasants of the developing world. The only major global class that was hurt by it was less skilled workers in the First World, hence Trump, the gilets jaunes, etc.

    Anyhow, you emigrated to a country which “replaces” ~1% of its population every year through immigration, most of it from the Third World. Set against that, your preoccupation with Russia’s “problems” in this respect (a country in which a “pessimistic” scenario is that it might get a community of 1 million reasonably well-behaved Tajiks by 2050) comes off as as a bit misplaced IMO.

  43. Mr. Hack says

    He would want racially/ethnically compatible people to assimilate to the Russian ethnicity. This predominantly means Belarusians and Ukrainians, but probably also Estonians or Latvians (provided that they are so inclined – the vast majority of them aren’t)… There are tradeoffs, like annexing Poland would make Russia bigger, but the Polish population would be highly disloyal and so it would probably greatly weaken Russia, so in the present circumstances practically all Russian nationalists would oppose this

    Although slightly more assimilable than Poland, I think that Russian nationalists like Karlin are off the mark by dreaming about absorbing and assimilating Ukraine and Ukrainians into their own Russian country. The events in Ukraine in 2014 definitely put this scenario into the dustbin of history.

    Even an area like Donbas, with less than 1/10 of the landmass and population of all of Ukraine has been tremendously difficult to incorporate, and at a very high cost. Somebody as intelligent as Karlin should be able to extrapolate this out and immediately weigh in the consequences and see how futile such an attempt would be going forward. And this is in an area where nationalism of any stripe is weak and where many of the locals are ethnically Russian. A cost/benefit analysis seems to favor the status quo IMO.

  44. Mr. Hack says

    Unfortunately the ancestry of Russian people has been betrayed too many times to count, starting with the Baptism of the Rus

    I don’t follow?…the Baptism of Rus offered many more plusses than minuses: unification of a large land mass, new social and educational institutions, elevation of the arts and architecture, the beginnings of a truly national literature, hospitals and orphanages and most importantly I would think from your point of view a very sophisticated and life affirming “transcendent” philosophy “theosis” that still awes and inspires mankind’s deepest longings and desires. For Russian nationalism, I would think that the ability to parley this sort of religious paradigm to its own advantage is self evident. For a transhumanist like Karlin, I think that the vision of living eternally in a spiritual sense with God should make more sense than trying to create something similar in a physical sense ala Marie Shelley’s Frankenstein model.

  45. Coconuts says

    There are some older critiques of the risk of excessive dependence on trade and commerce:

    Again, if the citizens themselves devote their life to matters of trade, the way will be opened to many vices. Since the foremost tendency of tradesmen is to make money, greed is awakened in the hearts of the citizens through the pursuit of trade. The result is that everything in the city will become venal; good faith will be destroyed and the way opened to all kinds of trickery; each one will work only for his own profit, despising the public good; the cultivation of virtue will fail since honour, virtue’s reward, will be bestowed upon the rich. Thus, in such a city, civic life will necessarily be corrupted.

    Thomas Aquinas, channeling Aristotle, from his short book ‘De Regno’.

    These tendencies are more developed in the big Western economies.

  46. Daniel Chieh says

    Sometimes survival is overrated.

    “Only the insane have strength enough to prosper; only those that prosper may judge what is truly sane.”

    — Imperial maxim, Warhammer 40,000

  47. Bashibuzuk says

    For an anti-Sovietist, you have a strangely Soviet view of how the world works.

    I despise Soviets because they were basically anti-Russian. They exacted a heavy toll on my people, physically and morally. Economic theories are quite secondary to my disgust with the Soviet regime and besides, quite a few anti-Sovietchiks were also anti-Capitalist. I personally am more of a solidarist.

    Globalization has been a huge boon not just for First World elites, but for the workers and peasants of the developing world.

    Have you been to the 3rd world? I’ve been to a few places in the Global South. Believe me, the Globalization has been a mixed blessing at best.

    Anyhow, you emigrated to a country which “replaces” ~1% of its population every year through immigration, most of it from the Third World.

    You are correct, but the population here is growing, which is less the case of the RusFed even with all the gasters pouring into it. Speaking of which, you have probably read all the lamenting by the RusFed elites about the flows of gasters drying up since Covid. It’s because they know the real situation with the ethnic Russian demographics, especially in the glubinka, where entire counties are emptying up.

    The elderly die off and younger generations move to the big cities. Moscow is projected to perhaps reach close to a 30 million population in the next generation and expand to a large portion of the Oblast’. That’s in a country where a meager 1,6 kids per woman are born in ethnic Russian families. Imagine what the glubinka hinterland will look then – a desert with dying hamlets.

    Demographics are destiny, especially in a country as large as RusFed and with such a dire climate. That’s one of the crucial problems that future Russian generations will have to face: how to occupy and keep functional infrastructure on the whole of the territory with sharply decreasing population numbers.

  48. Bashibuzuk says

    Okay, and ?

  49. AnonFromTN says

    It is truly amazing how many commenters here mix up nationalism with imperial mentality. These are two very different things.

    Tribal nationalism (my tribe/nation is better than all others, my tribe/nation is above all, “uber alles”, “понад усе”, and other childish BS like that) is a sure sign that tribe/nation/individual has a severe inferiority complex and tries to compensate in a way befitting a moron.

    Imperial mentality is always about a state, not a tribe. It seeks maximum influence/power to that state. Even though the state in question often has a name associated with a particular nation within it (imperial nation), it is not very important to a person/group/party with an imperial agenda. That’s why narrow tribal nationalism usually has very low popularity among the people who belong to successful imperial nations.

    In simple terms, tribal nationalism is for losers, imperial mentality is for winners.

  50. Bashibuzuk says

    It was the begging of twisting of the Eastern Slav spirit which increasingly led to what could be appropriately called чужебесие, ending up with the tragedies of the last hundred years that are due in great part to the spiritual inferiority complex in front of the Western cultural achievements.

    It was buying development through mortgaging the people’s spirit. It brought many good, but in the end it was probably more nefarious than not. I would wish our ancestors to have had a chance to preserve and develop their own spiritual traditions as the Hindus, Chinese, Japanese and others have done. Of course it is now impossible to correct this error done by the Rus elites who were eager to cash in on the trade and geopolitical networking of that days, which were strongly dependent on Byzantine trade back then.

  51. AltanBakshi says

    Dear Bashibuzuk you often remind me, some of the Russians I know, who were idealists in their youth, but turned into bitter cynics after the experiences of 90s. That’s why one should never ever be an idealist, what else a cynic is than a former idealist whose dreams crashed? Pragmatism and realism is the only way, to acknowledge the dark side of the human nature, but still see the flickering and faint light of hope in all! What a beauty!

    What some transhumanists do not understand, that in mind of every being, every concept arises in relation to something else, even if we all would become youthful and pretty like gods, our standards would rise, and the root of our problems would still be the same. After all there was a time when monkey women looked beautiful in the eyes of our paternal ancestors. Do not mistake me, transhumanism is the truth and it’s the future, but life will still be more or less shitty, but in a new way! There’s never easy solution to our problems.

    How nice it is that we all lack of our own nature, which is not same as having of one or same nature!

  52. AltanBakshi says

    Or actually you are more of a pessimist than a cynic.

  53. The events in Ukraine in 2014 definitely put this scenario into the dustbin of history.

    Not really my dear Mr. Hack. The French have fought three bloody wars with the Germans in 100 years and then began cooperation. All this takes is a change of government.

    I really wonder if there will be anything to integrate when Ukraine (or several) gets a sensible government.

    https://insomniacresurrected.com/2021/05/10/ukrainians-are-moving-to-russia-in-droves/

  54. Mr. Hack says

    From what I know of the Hindus, Chinese and Japanese, they all have borrowed and shared many different religious traditions one from the other. They certainly weren’t expressing their different faiths within a vacuum. The Russian north in fact borrowed its Orthodox faith from the south (Kyiv) and immediately began changing its structure and architectural style to match its own particular needs, but overall the church in the South and the North had many shared traditions. In the 17th century, the Ukrainian church found a strong champion in Petro Mohyla, who tried to navigate a way between the Orthodox church in the North, in Greece and the Latinized accretions that were abundantly arriving from the West.

    Allying itself with Byzantium seemed like a perfectly valid approach and offered the original Rus lands more than just greater trade opportunities, but the opportunity to take part in a vibrant religious community that translated to an abundance of opportunities to reach higher metaphysical boundaries. I recall in the not too distant past several of the commentators here discussed some of the reasons why the Latinized West was able to first make greater strides in the scientific achievements than the Orthodox East, however, I’m not sure that one can directly describe this difference to any feelings of “spiritual inferiority” of any kind?

  55. Mr. Hack says

    The French have fought three bloody wars with the Germans in 100 years and then began cooperation. All this takes is a change of government.

    This is true, however, up till now all the major party platforms are balanced against Russia. Putin backed the wrong horse in Yanukovych and lost Ukraine, he now can be satisfied to keep him close on a leash, as a runner up prize.

    I really wonder if there will be anything to integrate when Ukraine (or several) gets a sensible government.

    I wouldn’t read too much into 670,000 Ukrainian emigres moving to Russia. These are mostly economic gastebeiters that are sending back a of of funds back to Ukraine to their families and who will eventually move back to Ukraine as they reach retirement age. The same process is going on elsewhere as in Poland > Ukraine. Russia will always be interested in controlling Ukraine, everything you read or write to the contrary is a bunch of BS.

  56. The French have fought three bloody wars with the Germans in 100 years and then began cooperation. All this takes is a change of government.

    It took the utter collapse and destruction of Germany for France to reconcile with it. For France to get “back” Lothringen (more German than Crimea is Russian) and for Germany, ashamed of itself, to happily lose it. You are suggesting that if Russia were to lose a world war, collapse, and get divided and occupied, “return” Crimea to Ukraine, then Ukraine would make peace with the harmless and thoroughly humbled remains and the two countries would be close friends and allies like France and Germany. Um, okay.

  57. Perhaps there is some Dada sense of humour in this discussion, but if Karlin is a Russian nationalist – it sounds like the title of recent film of Spike Lee: “Black Klansman”.

    Nationalism in Russia was illegal since the 2000s, and back then was mixed up with a lot of unpleasant violent crimes that had toxified it in peoples’ minds.

    I’m not following the topic of recent years. But it seems like there is some astroturfing to pretend that a nationalism “jar” is not missing from the cupboard of contemporary politics, and this has been by relabelling the imperialism jar as “nationalism” and pretending it has the same contents, and hoping that people won’t notice the difference of taste between nationalism (that has been suppressed) and imperialism (which in a soft form is being assimilated as part of official ideology).

    Lenin has condemned imperialism as last stage of capitalism, but if we ignore the rhetorical use of the word by Lenin – this is a blog that supports Russian imperialism in the standard definition, and this means that Karlin is not being contradictory by supporting the government (as the government is assimilating a soft form of imperialism as part of the official ideology it promotes).

    In imperialism, it is important to be a great power, to build impressive cities that awe foreigners, to use a concept of “exceptionalism”, to project power into neighbouring countries, to have a strong military, and to have a lot of patriotism – if not jingoism* – developed in the local population (often promoting jingoist absurdities that you have the best language, the best music, etc).

    The advantage of this forum is that it is English language (that allows a more free and notfearful atmosphere for discussion of problems in Russia) and the multinationalism. All this can be a component of imperialism, and it is a result of some successful power projection that Russia became an interesting topic for foreigners and their media in recent years. Of course, blogs and forums for Russian nationalism provided in the English language, would be as useful as trying to sell raincoats to residents in the Sahara desert.

    *Perhaps the most successful in developing of jingoism and a concept of exceptionalism, was British imperialism of the 19th century – e.g. with the music of composers like Elgar.

    This is “imperial” patriotism of the great power, which feels quite different to the 19th century nationalism of peoples like Poles, Greeks and Czechs, that was based in the concept of self-determination from foreigners, and attracted romantic figures like Lord Byron to fight for the independence of nations.

  58. Bashibuzuk says

    Many Russians (and probably other Slavs) have nowadays an inferiority complex when they compare their lands to the Western countries. But that hasn’t been the case in earlier times.

    Adam of Bremen (or was it Saxo Grammaticus ? I don’t recall exactly and am too lazy to seek for it on the Web) writes about him and some other Germanic worthies being sent to some Wendish chieftain to negotiate peace. When presented with their offer, the Slav Prince replied: “We are the ones who set forth the conditions for a truce, because we are the ones used to conquer the others “. Now compare it with the way ancient Slavs are described and the way the modern Slavs behave nowadays.

    How did we get here? Through Christianisation and acculturation. They took Slav yeomen and made them into крестьяне (a derivative of christian). They took wolves (remember prince Vseslav of Polotsk turning into wolf and running through the Rus land at night to learn what his enemies plotted against him) and made them into sheep, a flock (быдло).

    Truly Sviatoslav Igorevich of Kiev was right : “Вера Христова юродство еси”…

  59. successful imperial nations.

    In the 19th century, imperialism was an external policy of the ruling class of great powers like Napoleonic France or Victorian England, while nationalism was a romantic and ressentiment ideology (mainly of educated lower middle class) to support tribal self-determination in peoples like Irish, Poles, Greeks and Czechs, that were occupied by great powers.

    Nationalism could be used as a instrument of empires, to provoke unrest within the border of their rival great powers – hence that slavic nationalism was promoted by the Russian Empire to create rebellions within the borders of the Austrian Empire.

    And nationalism in Italy and Germany, after successfully achieving its objective, had shortly transitioned to imperialism, as it related to unification of divided principalities, that when unified would result in emergence of great powers. In both countries, as they transitioned to imperialism, there was a fusion of the ressentiment aspect of their 19th century nationalism, to their imperialist ideology of the 20th century.

    There was also use of jingoistic cultural aspects of imperialism in Great Britain, as class management by the end of the 19th century (this – “One-Nation Toryism”) , where there was attempt to provide ersatz sense of superiority to the lower classes, through identifying them to the greatness of their country’s empire. This is the direction that was later followed in the 20th century in America and USSR.

    19th century romance of nationalism focused on love of small, local things, while imperialism was linked to theories of “exceptionalism” (that allow one nationality to rule the others), messianism, military power, monumentalism in architecture, and imposition of classical culture.

    Both the imperialism and nationalism were fertile land for artists in the 19th century, and the first years of 20th century.

    Elgar is surely the most successful composer that seemed to be inspired by late British imperialism, and it’s not easy to hear his songs without the British imperialist sense of noble ideals, fair play, monumentalism.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zaitJFDTslU

    Whereas with Elgar’s contemporary Janacek in small, occupied Czech lands, there are artistic projects inspired by nationalism. Nationalism of this time, has inspired a focus on local culture and ethnic particularism, and such results in projects like cataloguing of local folk songs to posterity.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iooK_l_LvKI

  60. AnonfromTN says

    Thanks for an interesting historical essay. However, I did not mean history, I meant the 21st century.

  61. Yes I assume that Karlin’s blog is a kind of Dada project, and excellent from this point of views. He pushes his readers on various sore places, and stimulates discussion and often annoyed reactions, which is how you would probably define success if you are a blogger.

    I remember that German Reader was confused that Karlin was once posting to him some aggressive pro-Russian imperialist text, in the English language, to an audience which is 90% non-Russian, non-imperialist people. German Reader was asking “Why are you posting this aggressive imperialist text to an international audience?” But we can say that, if it had confused Germany Reader, then the text has probably fulfilled its esoteric Dadaist purpose. And even that the cosmic, and only important, mission of that text, had been precisely to annoy German Reader, and that German Reader should have been flattered that his reaction was its secret raison d’être.

    By the way I’m happy to see that you had stayed up late enough to respond to my post? Another nightime traveller.

  62. Mr. Hack says

    You seem to focus your disdain of Orthodox Christianity for its cultural association with Judaism, which of course is there. But Christianity changed the original Judaic faith dramatically becoming a true world religion with much greater goals and the ability to transcend its original narrow Judaic purpose. The Jewish tribe was a small sliver of humanity that actually represented all of humanity. It lost a lot of its original Jewish flavor when the majority of its religious leaders refused to accept Christ as their Messiah. Of course God the father would be very pleased to have the Tribe grafted back into the tree of life, and has made it clear that we, the new gentile followers are not to act haughtily and proud of our current role as the “New Jerusalem” and look afoul upon those Jews that have fallen away.

  63. Bashibuzuk says

    Did you see what happens in Israel/Palestine today?

    This is Abrahamic Creeds for you, and they both believe that G-d / Allah, like some crooked real estate agent, has signed the sale of this plot of land twice with clients from the same family, but on poor terms with each other.

    They do not hesitate to kill children in their sleep and you still believe that their G-d is the true Creator of the Universe?

    Truly, Вера Христова юродство еси!

    I hope these Abraham’s children end up learning what Karma is. But my hopes are probably vain.

  64. Bashibuzuk says

    Anatoly has a great sense of humor, he is a 1488 level Troll with a well deserved capitalized T.

  65. Rattus Norwegius says

    Who could the Slavic Wends have conquered? It must have been Germanic peoples.

  66. Mr. Hack says

    I’m surprised that a sophisticated thinker like you is not able to distinguish the differences between three different faith systems and prefer to lop them all together into one fuzzy whole and call it “Abrahamic Creed” and then ascribe the problems and feuds of 2/3’s of this conglomerate whole to the 1/3 that is not involved? I’m pretty sure that you don’t have this problem of discernment in distinguishing the differences between the Hindu faith and the Buddhist one, although they’re closely related too?…

  67. It took the utter collapse and destruction of Germany for France to reconcile with it.

    The utter collapse of nazi Ukraine will lead to other regions reintegrating with Russia. Russia is not the occupier here. You clearly do not know much about Alsace, actually the region my ancestors came from to Bohemia in 18th century because of French Revolutionary Wars. Donbas wants to be a part of Russia and the people there put the Kremlin in a situation, where it had no choice but help them in 2014. The people of Crimea also chose to be with Russia and will not change their mind to return to nazi Ukraine.

    Russia is the force of truth, and peace, while Ukraine is an area of chaos and lies. The Western project Ukraine has embarked on will never bear any fruit, Ukraine is not a candidate for EU membership, and neither will in join NATO. The people there are tired with Sorosyata and neonazis.

  68. Bashibuzuk says

    Vlakhs mostly, that is Romanized Celts, Dacians and Celto-Thracians, but they must have also encroached sometimes on the lands of their Germanic neighbors as well.

    Basically, if one looks at the situation in the fourth and fifth century one sees Germanic tribes moving South West into the former Roman realm and Western Slavs moving to replace them and occupy the emptied Eastern European territory.

    Also, they have possibly often migrated side by side, especially under Hunnic patronage.

  69. Mr. Hack says

    Russia is the force of truth, and peace,

    I see that your vision is still blinded by some sort of hallucinogens. 🙂

  70. Bashibuzuk says

    I actually distinguish quite well between the different Abrahamic denominations (including some quite exotic ones), but what unites them all is that feeling of choseness and monopoly on the truth.

    Now, in my humble opinion, and according to what I have read about the evolution of Christianity, Jesus possibly did not intend his teaching to evolve that way. I think that a strong case could be made that Christianity was supposed to further diverge from Judaism and become fully independent and opposite to some among Biblical tenets, in a manner similar to the evolution of the Buddhist teaching and its divergence from and opposition to Vedic Hinduism.

    But Jesus was killed before he could complete his mission and later St Paul and the early Church Fathers brought Christianity firmly back into the Biblical fold. This is how Christianity became just another Abrahamic Creed, instead of becoming something truly unique and free from the accretion of the old Semitic monotheism. Abrahamic monotheism that later on metastasized into Islam.

    And then unholy trinity of the Abrahamic cults has seeded intolerance and religious violence among humans. Causing much suffering and strife to this very day.

  71. Mr. Hack says

    As far as “exclusivity” is concerned do you really feel that the following words attributed to Jesus were actually later added in after his death and resurrection as some sort of a ploy to dupe humankind?

    “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

    John: 14.6

  72. AnonFromTN says

    nazi Ukraine

    Have to disagree. Calling Ukrainian wonnabes “Nazis” is slander for German Nazis: those Ukies are venal retarded cowards, they do not measure up in any way.

    The rest is true: Crimea and Donbass never were Ukrainian and never will be.

  73. AnonFromTN says

    monopoly on the truth

    The claim that it knows the Truth with a capital T is a common element of all religions, including communism. Needless to say, it is patently false in all cases.

  74. Bashibuzuk says

    Well, we know that the Gospel of John was the latest addition to the Cannon among those Gospels recognized by the Church. Its neo-Platonicist and Gnostic tendencies were considered suspicious. Does it mean that Jesus didn’t say these words? We cannot truly know.

    In general, I would put more confidence in the putstive sentences of Jesus that have been recorded in the four synoptic Gospels and the Apocryphal Gospel of Thomas. These sentences are the majority, we can reliably build our understanding of the teachings of Jesus upon them.

    Another important thing is that Jesus often used parables, as in the Sermon on the Mount. Therefore, it would have been helpful to know how the early Christians deciphered these parables and whether their interpretation evolved in time.

    Lastly, words have often many layers of meaning in spiritual teachings and metaphysical doctrines. Therefore, Jesus might have used common words to express complex topics. Heavenly Father is one such use and Christians needed to work out a doctrine of Trinity to interpret the relationship between Heavenly Father, Jesus and the Holy Ghost. There might have been other instances of such poly- semantic concepts.

    In that case Jesus might have well wanted to transmit a certain knowledge to his disciples through the sentence that you provide without it literally meaning that anyone not following Jesus is automatically condemned to erring, going astray and finally being damned for all infinity.

    Just my 2 cents as I am certainly not an expert in early Christian Church and Orthodox theology.

  75. Bashibuzuk says

    In Zen Buddhism we cannot know or infer the Truth from any teachings, but we can experience it if our mindset is right. This experience is immanent and transcendent at the same time, it happens in the here and now and can hardly be expressed in words, except for the use of a metaphorical and/or poetic language.

  76. The utter collapse of nazi Ukraine will lead to other regions reintegrating with Russia

    For how many years have you been telling yourself this fairytale? You and Saker should form a support group.

    You clearly do not know much about Alsace

    Clearly you do not understand analogies. Okay, I’ll spell it out for you. Alsace was about 70% German IIRC. Crimea about 60% Russian.

    You wrote that since France and Germany came together after all their wars, so will Ukraine and Russia. It only takes a change in government.

    Well, it took a little more than that for France to reconcile with Germany. The friendship happened after Germany was thoroughly defeated, humiliated and humbled and in such a condition happily surrendered this German ethnic territory to its old enemy. Russia and Ukraine reconciling like Germany and France would mean Russia getting thoroughly defeated and humbly surrendering Russian ethnic territory Crimea to Ukraine. Maybe you think a reconciliation would follow a Franco-German model but I think it would be very unlikely and indeed unwelcome; I don’t hate Russia and wouldn’t want it to be destroyed and humiliated as Germany was.

  77. AnonFromTN says

    Russia getting thoroughly defeated and humbly surrendering Russian ethnic territory Crimea to Ukraine

    Maybe somewhere in the infinite universe there is a planet where this is possible, but Earth sure is not that planet. Many Ukies dream of the disintegration of Russia, but that only shows their mental retardation. Ukraine, on the other hand, under current puppets is steaming to its demise as a state.

    As to reconciliation, there would be none while Ukraine exists as an anti-Russia project. When it ceases to exist, some areas of 2013 Ukraine might become Russia (Crimea already is de jure, Donbass is de facto), but I don’t think any Russian president would want to deal with historical Little Poland. Russia, like Poland, wouldn’t mind the territory, but neither wants the fauna living there.

  78. AnonFromTN says

    Is Buddhism really that different? I know that among big religions (Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism) it is guilty of a lot fewer murders and various crimes than the others, but if we count militant Tibetan branch and current Burmese Buddhism, the number is far from zero.

  79. Bashibuzuk says

    It’s a bit complicated because Buddhism is many somewhat different things to great many different people.

    There is a variety of schools and sects. They share many tenets, but also have major differences in their approaches.

    If you have some time to spend on it, here is what the late Evgeny Alexandrovich Torchinov, an imminent Russian Sinologist and Buddhologist, had to say in an interview about Ch’an, the original (Chinese) version of Zen Buddhism.

    https://www.torchinov.com/%D0%B0%D1%80%D1%85%D0%B8%D0%B2/%D0%B8%D0%BD%D1%82%D0%B5%D1%80%D0%B2%D1%8C%D1%8E/zen-ru/

    The school that he is talking about (and to which he was personally associated) is the one that I feel closest to my personal inclinations.

  80. Calling Ukrainian wonnabes “Nazis” is slander for German Nazis

    You have a high opinion of German Nazis, who managed to ground the great German nation into the dust. I know, you have to build them up to make the pathetic Soviet performance (losing 27 million people) less unimpressive. It hurts too much to admit that you lost so much to a much smaller nation led by ridiculous suicidal murderers. Or maybe your compliments reflect gratitude? If Hitler hadn’t interfered and had allowed the professional generals to do their work, it’s likely that the Soviets would have lost the war.

    cowards

    Azov are Satanists and evil, but cowards? They held their own in brawls with pro-Russians.

  81. Seraphim says

    You better remember how your glorious Sviatoslav Igorevich (Svigor?) ended up. Beheaded by the Petcheneg Bashibuzuks to drink from his skull! Because he did not want to listen to his mother who was urging him to take the Baptism! I really can’t understand the glamorization of Sviatoslav by the pseudo-‘Slavs’ (he was not Slav anyway, but beholden to Variag ‘paganism’ seasoned with human sacrifices a la ‘Manics, the cult of killers’).

  82. AltanBakshi says

    There is no separate school of Chan, only in Japan in that mad island of heretics, there exists schools that claim to be just Chan/Zen. Chan is just one helpful set of practices on the road to Buddhahood.

    Japanese have this weird way of concentrating on just a few different practices, almost make them some kind of fetishes and forget everything else, but elsewhere, everywhere else, Buddhism has always been very holistic with it’s approach to problems of human life. Yup, I could say this that Japanese attitude towards Dharma is unbelievably un-holistic, shame on them.

    Let’s take Zazen for example, sitting meditation is part of every Buddhist tradition, it’s nothing special, and it can be helpful for many, but in Japan there are crazy schools that just do Zazen half of the time, madness!

    https://www.dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.php?t=12532

    “in Chinese, “shikantaza(zhi guan da zuo 只管打坐)” even is not special term usage, but just is an ordinary, every day term means “just sitting”. ”

    “Yes. It’s another one of those things where on one hand, people who use the original language of the phrase understand it in very general terms according to the actual phrase, whereas those who don’t use the original language but keep a special kind of transliterated phrase understand it only through a particular case.

    In Chinese, 只管打坐 really just means “just tend to sitting”. Doesn’t have any particular connotation to any particular school, or indicate any particular type of practice or method, at all. Often used to refer to meditators who don’t deal with other stuff, ie. the monastery 清眾 qingzhong, who don’t have administrative or other such responsibilities. What do they do? They just sit in meditation.

    Another Chinese equivalent would be 只管修行 zhiguan xiuxing “just tend to cultivation”. Pretty much the same thing.”

  83. AltanBakshi says

    but if we count militant Tibetan branch and current Burmese Buddhism, the number is far from zero.

    Militant Tibetan branch? You have no right to criticize those idiots who think that Russia is far right irredentist power, if you yourself make similar false assumptions. Same with Burmese Buddhism. Laughable from you!

    In over 2500 years history of our faith you can find only 2-3 three times, excluding Japan, that we have killed others because of their faith. Our faith is exceedingly peaceful and harmonious, our religion does not feel threatened by other faiths, as long as they are not specially targeting us like Islam. Our religion is so accommodating of other faiths, that the religious plurality is one of the core values of our religion. The founder of our religion, Buddha himself even encouraged some of his followers to support other religions, like Jainism, and discouraged us from openly criticizing other religions, did you know that?

    Militant Tibetan, WTF? If you continue to claim such falsehoods, please show me your sources? I’ve always been very honest with my religion, and for sake of honesty I’ve even purposefully written here on this site, things about Buddhism that may make it look bad.

    I even made a list of things in Buddhism, that can be shocking or too extreme.

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/open-thread-127/#comment-4293983

    And I forget to add that old Buddhist scriptures are very much against of eating of garlic and onion, against eating of any plants belonging to genus Allium. (I think that in ancient times it was very proletarian and uncultured to eat lots of onions and garlic and that’s why.)

    See my hands/palms are open, I do not try to hide anything, and I truthfully show things that may look superstitious or backward, things that can put my religion in bad light! Similarly I have openly written here about violence committed by Buddhism, and in comparison with some other religions or ideologies, it’s practically nothing.

  84. AltanBakshi says

    You are now very funny, the debate between Kamalashila and Moheyan is familiar to me, as is the old difference between Southern and Northern schools of Chan. Historically relationship of those with gradualist approach and those with sudden, has been somewhat tense. Even among Chinese Chan, you probably know the debates between gradual cultivation, sudden enlightenment and sudden cultivation and sudden enlightenment -folks? There are many Tibetan schools that emphasize sudden approach with one’s Buddhanature, what else Dzogchen or Tantra is, than pursuit of swift realization?

    But I wouldn’t read it if I was you. It would only result in you becoming more perplexed in the matters of Dharma. You seem doing fine spiritually, keep your current Tibetan Buddhist practice unadulterated and you will end up in the Shambhala as you wish for.

    Too late! Ive read earlytibet blog in its entirety long before I found this site, and I know about Dunhuang Chan discoveries. There are many who nowadays question the simplified narrative of debate between Chinese and Indians in Tibet.

    Ch’an is not for everyone. In fact, it is not for most people I have personally ever met or known. And I usually do not discuss it online or in real life, but I find it is important that you do not erroneously slander the school of Huike, Huineng, Huangpo, Linji, numerous other masters and the modern times Great Masters such as Xu Yun, by pretending that their teaching simply does not exist.

    And when I have slandered by claiming that their teachings does not exist? As a separate traditional school of Dharma Chan does not exist anywhere except in Japan. In Mainland there’s two surviving lineages, Linji and Caodong, and only some abbots are affiliated with them. Mahayana is a complete whole, your attitude is somewhat sectarian if you are trying make Chan something that is separate and distinct from the rest of Dharma.

    https://www.dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.php?t=12532

    “In China association with any particular lineage is mostly irrelevant in terms of doctrine and practices. At certain times in Buddhist history such lineages meant association with certain groups of elite monastics, but those times were rather exceptional. Normally life in a monastery goes on just as it did before, following similar rituals and daily routine. Individual monks can specialise in the area of their choice and do the practices they prefer. And when there is an outstanding (usually old and experienced) monk, younger monks go and study from him.”

    I very much respect the holistic approach of Chinese Buddhism, I cant even explain here how much I respect them because of it, a sure sign of Buddhadharma, to see harmony in all and to learn from all, well done! Sadhu, sadhu sadhu!

    Humour has always been a part of our religion, same thing with filial piety, there are many examples, like some Brahmin giving a convoluted story as a reply to Buddha’s question, and Buddha making up some story that is even more absurd.

    I’m not at home now, so I will read your links later, and Ive seen that documentary, it’s a good one. Thank you for your time!

  85. Bashibuzuk says

    In Mainland there’s two surviving lineages, Linji and Caodong, and only some abbots are affiliated with them.

    Therefore, Ch’an still exists as a separate school. Anyway, Ch’an has never been about numbers. Legend has it that only Mahakasyapa understood Buddha’s teaching that was the foundation of Ch’an. Bodhidharma had only two to four students.
    Early Ch’an revolved around a couple dozen masters at most and it was still enough to attract those who have the right mindset and provide them with the means to attain their final goal.

    That is also why Ch’an/Zen is perfectly suitable for the building of a Western Buddhist tradition: it is more lean and nimble as a spiritual approach and quite efficient in working on one’s own mind through one’s own mind only to attain that individual mind’s liberation from the ignorance of it’s own nature and achieve the cessation of suffering through this process. You basically only need your own mind and your own life to walk this path. Everything else is optional or even superfluous.

    Anyway, that’s too many words that I wrote about something that I shouldn’t write about at all. Truly serious matters should not be discussed on the internet. It’s not the right place to discuss Ch’an. I shouldn’t have started.

  86. For how many years have you been telling yourself this fairytale? You and Saker should form a support group.

    It has been only seven years since the last leprosy outbreak on the Ukrainian fake and gay state. What Ukraine has been experiencing is a overall decline since then. And it may take 10, 20, 30 years, and another piece will fall off.

    What is fake will be gay, will catch syphilis and will dissipate.

    Alsace was about 70% German

    That is true but the population there was not asked about its future and I do not know of a strong pro-German party in that region. It is common knowledge that the German Empire did not trust the Alsatians.

    In fact, Crimea was 90% Russia because the Ukrainians are essentially Russians. And if we make comparisons using Alsace, the Alsatians were very much the Ukrainians of the German nation.

  87. Have to disagree. Calling Ukrainian wonnabes “Nazis” is slander for German Nazis: those Ukies are venal retarded cowards, they do not measure up in any way.

    It is an easy way of saying “radical nationalist”. Radical nationalism is literally the ideology of Ukraine that does not change since the Maidan. It basically entails:

    1) Attacks on the Russian cultural and linguistic elements. The Russian language is basically all but banned in Ukraine now, and only allowed to be used in private.
    2) Apologetics for radical nationalists of the 1930s, adoption of their symbols and slogans.
    3) Neonazis employed by the government in a variety of offices, particularly those that deal with culture and youth.
    4) Neonazis being employed by the ministry of interior and the SBU t0 harass political opponents of the government. The Azov even has tanks.
    5) Attacks on 9 May, the memory of victory and equating UPA and other ghouls with the heroic Red Army.
    6) Selective rewriting of history. I hear UPA now is covered on several pages of the Ukrainian history textbooks, while contribution of the Red Army is covered in one paragraph.

    I have no problem calling Ukraine a Nazi state.

  88. I wouldn’t read too much into 670,000 Ukrainian emigres moving to Russia. These are mostly economic gastebeiters that are sending back a of of funds back to Ukraine to their families and who will eventually move back to Ukraine as they reach retirement age. The same process is going on elsewhere as in Poland > Ukraine.

    Why would economic migrants need a Russian citizenship? Mr. Hack, you are living in pre-2014 reality when most emigration was motivated by economic reasons, these days it is security also that motivates Ukrainians to move out. Nobody wants to be cannon fodder when Zelensky or some other clown decides to attack the Donbas again. Why would anyone return to Ukraine for retirement if the pension in Russia is like 3 times higher?

    Also, remittances are usually sent to feed family in Ukraine. The trend however is to get even elderly parents out of there.

  89. It has been only seven years since the last leprosy outbreak on the Ukrainian fake and gay state

    It lost Crimea, which was artificially attached, and Donbas – the land of HIV, abortion, crime, and no births. Loss of Donbas – the amputation of a gangrenous limb whose infection harmed the entire country, as demonstrated by the Yanukovich presidency.

    What Ukraine has been experiencing is a overall decline since then

    You are gullible and naive, and believe nonsense and wishful thinking from Russian nationalist sources. A Czech LARPing as a Russian nationalist is funny. GDP per capita and wages are higher than in 2013. Power and economics of the Ukrainian state have shifted to the more Ukrainian regions, as it should be in a Ukrainian state.

    And if we make comparisons using Alsace, the Alsatians were very much the Ukrainians of the German nation.

    The most accurate part of this statement is that just as Alsatian will not be part of Germany again in the foreseeable future, so Ukraine will not be part of Russia in the foreseeable future. So you will be forced to cope for the next decades with your fairy tales about how Ukraine is like Somalia or whatever.

  90. The Russian language is basically all but banned in Ukraine now, and only allowed to be used in private

    Cluelessness confirmed. Most commonly heard language in the streets, shops and restaurants in Kiev is Russian. The Azovite neo-Nazis mostly use Russian.

  91. It lost Crimea, which was artificially attached,

    Do you realise that Donbas, Odessa, Halychyna, Volhynia, Tavrida etc. were all artificially attached?

    Power and economics of the Ukrainian state have shifted to the more Ukrainian regions, as it should be in a Ukrainian state.

    I would wager my dear that the quality of life in DNR, outside the front line is higher than in most Ukrainian regions. Ukrainians leave the country in droves, infrastructure is decrepit, energy is expensive. The country is a joke…

    GDP per capita may be higher but really, who benefits?

  92. Cluelessness confirmed.

    The fact that you cannot be served in shops in Russian anymore escapes you. You will harassed by language patrols if you do. You cannot attend a school with Russian as the language of instruction.

    That makes the language effectively banned. The fact that this ban contradicts the vernacular used by the people is another matter completely.

  93. A Czech LARPing as a Russian nationalist is funny.

    I’m a pro-Russian Czech. I fight Russophobia, and I believe we need to ditch Western influence and heal relations with Russia. Otherwise, our region has a very bleak future.

  94. The fact that you cannot be served in shops in Russian anymore escapes you

    The you believe that one cannot be served in shops in Russian anymore is yet further proof that you are a clueless consoomer of Russian nationalist nonsense.

    You will harassed by language patrols if you do

    Lol.

    For other readers: Ukraine passed a law that starting in 2022 if a store owner refuses to speak Ukrainian to a Ukrainian-speaking customer who demands to be served in Ukrainian, the customer can report him, and he will be fined if it is shown to be so. It’s an example of populism.

    Our sleep-deprived friend believes that this means that people aren’t allowed to speak Russian in stores or streets or whatever. Anyone spending any time in a Russian-speaking city like Kiev where people speak Russian in stores and restaurants regularly, sees how fantastically ridiculous our sleep-deprived friend’s idea is.

    But it is an excellent demonstration of his “knowledge” about Ukraine. Any of his other claims can be treated accordingly.

    You cannot attend a school with Russian as the language of instruction.

    This is true of secondary schools, may or may not be true of primary schools. You of course are not the person to ask.

    The state secondary schools in Ukraine are in the state language, as in many countries like the USA. Many Russian speakers in places like Kiev support this btw. If they didn’t it would be the law.

  95. Do you realise that Donbas, Odessa, Halychyna, Volhynia, Tavrida etc. were all artificially attached?

    True of parts of Donbas. The other regions were either part of Ukraine’s ethnic core (Galicia and Volhynia) or adjacent to it and settled by Ukrainians moving into them from the core regions, a very natural process like the Russian settlement of the Urals and Siberia.

    I would wager my dear that the quality of life in DNR, outside the front line is higher than in most Ukrainian regions

    These regions now are even poorer than Transcarpathia.

    Ukrainians leave the country in droves, infrastructure is decrepit, energy is expensive

    Sure, even if a place improves people will still leave if they can make 3 times more. This is why Poland has also sen an exodus despite it becoming richer per capita than Russia. Roads around Lviv and Kiev are great.

    GDP per capita may be higher but really, who benefits?

    Wages are also higher. Places like Turkey have seen a record number of holiday-goers from Ukraine in 2019.

    https://www.ukraine-itm.com.ua/en-GB/press/news/3468.aspx

    My cousins couldn’t afford to travel abroad until that year, when some visited a cheap Turkish and another an Egyptian resort. This year one of them just came back from Dubai. They live in an oblast that borders Kiev oblast, which has really seen improvement since 2013.

  96. As a Czech you are sensitive to the idea of who is stronger and eager to serve that power. So your people served Berlin, then Moscow, then Washington or Brussels. Now you personally think you are ahead of the pack and are bowing before Moscow because the West is faltering. But most of your people are still following Washington. Endless servility certainly has its advantages – your people have avoided a lot of misery in the last century.

    You would like Beckow, except you are of Sudeten German descent and he doesn’t like those people at all.

    I have a sliver of Sudeten German ancestry also, some Sudeten German officer and his Tyrolean wife who was stationed at Przemysl. My only non-Slavic ancestors. He was a commoner who managed to rise in the ranks during the Napoleonic wars. His children married either Polish or Ruthenian gentry and assimilated accordingly. This guy’s Ukrainian and Polish descendants fought against each other in the Polish-Ukrainian war.

  97. AnonFromTN says

    No wonder that a person who never lived in Ukraine knows nothing about the situation on the ground. You could at least read the law your beloved current puppet Ukrainian “government” adopted. It makes it a crime to use Russian in public space. The law is clearly based on the premise that on a level playing field Russian beats Ukrainian hands down. Even current speaker of Ukrainian delegation in the contact group and advisor to the head of president’s administration Arestovych recently complained about the pressure on him for using Russian. The pressure on ordinary people w/o privileges is even greater. In the news there are many stories when “patriotic” nitwits reported shop assistances, waiters, etc. to Ukie authorities for using Russian and those Russian-speaking people were officially punished.

    First and foremost, Ukies deserve contempt for making Ukraine a veritable madhouse, a travesty of a country.

  98. No wonder that a person who never lived in Ukraine knows nothing about the situation on the ground. You could at least read the law your beloved current puppet Ukrainian “government” adopted. It makes it a crime to use Russian in public space.

    Thanks for demonstrating your own usual cluelessness and gullibility.

    Of course, you have lived in TN for many years and actually wrote that no US state has declared English a state language, when your own state did just that. So I suppose one can’t blame you for believing only fairytales about Ukraine.

    In the news

    Yes, the gullible boomer reads something on the Russian internets, it must be true 🙂

    Thanks again what showing your “expertise” on Ukraine.

    Meanwhile in the real world people continue to peacefully speak Russian in shops and restaurants. Most of Kiev does that, you know.

    As I wrote, from 2021 (though fines don’t begin until 2022), workers in businesses in Ukraine will be obligated to speak Ukrainian to Ukrainian-speaking customers who demand service in Ukrainian. Those who refuse will get fined. I think a lot of Americans would like it if the USA had such a law with English.

  99. AnonFromTN says

    Any comment about Arestovych? In contrast to you, he lives in Ukraine.

  100. What about him?

    In contrast to you, I actually visit Ukraine once in a while.

  101. AnonfromTN says

    I visited it regularly when it was Ukraine. I stopped visiting when it became a madhouse.

  102. Drinking in the skulls of the slain enemies was an old Steppe tradition that goes deep down in the history, all the way to the Pazyryk Scythians and related Siberian cultures. Only high status enemies, those considered powerful and valorous, received such an honor. Of course price Sviatoslav fits the definition of the valorous warrior and must have probably felt honored by the Pecheneg princes keeping his memory alive by inviting him to their feasts.

    Thank you. I hadn’t thought of it that way but this makes much sense.

    The Variag were a mixed population that arose from the interaction of the Akozino-Malar Ugric, ancient North-Eastern Germanic (typical of which were the Rugian Rani) and the Balto – Slavic (Wends) components. They were mostly Wendish and practiced a Baltic variety of Old European religion.

    You’ve convinced me of the strong Wendish elements, but the fact that the ruling family had Norse names (as did most of the people named on the Byzantine Treaty) and the strong and consistent links with Scandinavia suggest that the Norse element was equal if not dominant.

    Old European paganism contained human sacrifice, but it might be argued that Medieval Christianity also sacrificed its heretics and outlaws in droves.

    Pre-Christian Europe was incredibly violent; in Ukraine about 20% of the population died through violence:

    https://ourworldindata.org/ethnographic-and-archaeological-evidence-on-violent-deaths

    Graves in ancient Ukraine (Volos’ke, (Ukraine), ‘Epipalaeolithic’; ca. 7500 BCE) showed 22% of people died by violence. In Northern India in 850 BC (when the area was settled by Aryans) it was 30%.

    This might not have been for explicit religious reasons but those people were probably very religious and their faith permeated their actions, as they slaughtered each other on a scale that was 10 times greater than Europe during the worst of the religious wars in the 17th century.

    When it came to kill fellow humans for religious reasons, only the Aztec perhaps killed more people as part of their faith, than the Abrahamic Creeds did. But given that the Catholic ended up genociding the Aztec

    Mass deaths was due to disease, not violence. Spanish Catholics liberated Aztecs from their demon-worship and mass human sacrifice. They replaced that with literacy, humanism, beautiful Baroque culture, etc. This was one of the greatest positive transformations of a place in history. Anti-Christian or anti-Catholic bigotry must be very strong, to deny this fact and to present it as some sort of evil or genocide.

  103. As I wrote, from 2021 (though fines don’t begin until 2022), workers in businesses in Ukraine will be obligated to speak Ukrainian to Ukrainian-speaking customers who demand service in Ukrainian. Those who refuse will get fined. I think a lot of Americans would like it if the USA had such a law with English.

    That makes Russian effectively banned, and probably other languages like Hungarian too. The most ridiculous thing is trying to replace the Russian language with village patois. But as I said, the vernacular of the population is another matter from the state policy. The state policy is bullshit but it is there. I am clued on the situation.

    I do not think the Ukrainian public was ever asked whether they actually want this. Millions, literally millions, have voted with their feet. They can’t take this bullshit anymore. Entire regions have fallen off so they do not have to deal with this.

    Even in 2014, the Maidanites needed a violent action to oust Yanuk and Azarov, and a violent suppression of the Antimaidan with scenes of barbarism like those we have seen on 2 May in Odessa. It doesn’t look like something that represents the majority, rather it seems like an active minority is asserting itself over a silent majority.

    As a Czech you are sensitive to the idea of who is stronger and eager to serve that power. So your people served Berlin, then Moscow, then Washington or Brussels. Now you personally think you are ahead of the pack and are bowing before Moscow because the West is faltering.

    At the end 0f the day, transsexual West will probably be replaced by Moscow. I can’t do much about that. I would rather have 9 May parade than drag queen story hour.

  104. Coconuts says

    This might not have been for explicit religious reasons but those people were probably very religious and their faith permeated their actions, as they slaughtered each other on a scale that was 10 times greater than Europe during the worst of the religious wars in the 17th century.

    The distinction between ‘religious war’ and ‘secular war’ seems to originate in the Latin church fathers, particularly St. Augustine. AFAIK he first articulated the two powers theory, that there is a spiritual power, the Church, and a temporal power, Caesar, the emperor or king. He had this idea of the simultaneous, overlapping existence of the eternal City of God and of the city of the earth which existed in time (the overlap was the Church). Later on, during the Early Modern period and the Enlightenment, this distinction was modified in the light of new philosophical and political beliefs and became the basis for the distinction between the ‘secular’ and the ‘religious’.

    In the traditional Mediterranean pagan view, this distinction does not seem to have been made. All Roman imperial wars were religious in this way, fought for the glory and honour of the gods of Rome, or to preserve the Pax Romana, which had a kind of inherent religious significance.

  105. “As I wrote, from 2021 (though fines don’t begin until 2022), workers in businesses in Ukraine will be obligated to speak Ukrainian to Ukrainian-speaking customers who demand service in Ukrainian. Those who refuse will get fined. I think a lot of Americans would like it if the USA had such a law with English.”

    That makes Russian effectively banned

    So dishonesty added to cluelessness.

    Forcing a shop owner to serve a customer in Ukrainian if that customer demands it is not “effectively banning Russian.” Moreover fines don’t even start until 2022, you are claiming Russian is banned in public now.

    I am clued on the situation.

    We see exactly how clued in you are.

    I do not think the Ukrainian public was ever asked whether they actually want this.

    Language law has about 60% support and 30% opposition nationally (if Crimea and Donbas were still in Ukraine these numbers would no doubt be different). The party that opposes it gets about 25% support. Such is the nature of democracy. Law is opposed in the East and South but this is where it will make the least difference (not many customers there will demand to be served in Ukrainian).

    Millions, literally millions, have voted with their feet

    Silly, they migrate due to 3 times higher wages, not due to language laws, ffs.

    It doesn’t look like something that represents the majority, rather it seems like an active minority is asserting itself over a silent majority.

    Keep up the wishful thinking and belief in fairytales.

  106. Forcing a shop owner to serve a customer in Ukrainian if that customer demands it is not “effectively banning Russian.” Moreover fines don’t even start until 2022, you are claiming Russian is banned in public now.

    The law basically foresees fines and language police already exists. Already you can be harassed by neonazis if you transgress. That on top of Russian schools being completely obliterated. I think that amounts to an effective ban. And, who gives a fuck what the vernacular of the people is? If you cannot effectively use a language and get an education in it, you are basically being repressed in your rights to use your vernacular.

    Neonazis harassing’s people over language is Africa…

    Silly, they migrate due to 3 times higher wages, not due to language laws, ffs.

    Migration due to higher wages is a pre-2014 thinking. Get with the times, after Maidan, people leave because of security concerns.

    Language law has about 60% support and 30% opposition nationally (if Crimea and Donbas were still in Ukraine these numbers would no doubt be different). The party that opposes it gets about 25% support. Such is the nature of democracy.

    When has Ukraine ever conducted a referendum on the issue? I guess that is not on the agenda. Also, the support and opposition is regionally distributed.

  107. Language law has about 60% support and 30% opposition nationally (if Crimea and Donbas were still in Ukraine these numbers would no doubt be different).

    Actually, come to think about it, didn’t Zelensky came to power on slogans of tolerance for the Russian language?

  108. The law basically foresees fines and language police already exists

    Starting in 2020, if a customer demands to be served in Ukrainian and the place of business refuses, it will be fined after an investigation. If both the customer and the business prefer to use Russian with each other there is no fine.

    You are basically just whining because store owners will no longer be allowed to refuse to speak Ukrainian.

    That on top of Russian schools being completely obliterated

    Russian will continue to be allowed in elementary schools but not in secondary schools (unless in a foreign language class). This is already more tolerant than the USA which does not even have Spanish-language state elementary schools (other than a handful of boutique immersion schools in Mandarin or perhaps Spanish).

    If you cannot effectively use a language and get an education in it, you are basically being repressed in your rights to use your vernacular

    So in your world everyone other than English speakers in the USA is being repressed. Do they have Czech language universities in France or Germany? I guess you would be repressed if you lived there. All those Poles in the UK are repressed due to no Polish language state schools and universities there lol.

    You should rebrand as a BLM activist.

    Migration due to higher wages is a pre-2014 thinking. Get with the times, after Maidan, people leave because of security concerns

    Nonsense. Outside of the Donbas war zone, migration is mostly temporary (people leave for 6 months or so and return) and to boost family finances.

    There is no end to the silly fairy tales you believe.

    Neonazis harassing’s people over language is Africa

    Ukraine’s language policy is like that of any nationalistic European place. It has much in common with the Baltics, Quebec etc. I guess these places are “Africa” to you? 🙂

  109. That isn’t why he won most of the Western oblasts. Try again.

  110. Boomthorkell says

    “They’re officially punishing using the language next year, fool!” Isn’t a great argument against the claim they are currently pressuring users of the language in question.

    Anyhow, nice argument about the South and East. Logically then, they should exit the Oligarchy of Ruthenia for the Russia, which can then pass a law demanding any Ukrainian speaking shop owner address a customer in Russian if asked (jk, they wouldn’t need to, being confident in their strong culture.)

    Still, it’s a shame the Slavic Federation is in its current state of disunity.

  111. “They’re officially punishing using the language next year, fool!” Isn’t a great argument against the claim they are currently pressuring users of the language in question

    The claim was that Russia is currently banned in public places in Ukraine. The reality is that in 2022 people will still be speaking Russian to each other in stores and restaurants in Russian-speaking parts of the country if they want to, as they do now, but if an employee refuses to speak Ukrainian to a customer the store will be fined.

    The language issue is something like #20 in importance and a lot of people in the South and East support the new law too (IIRC at least around 40%). While most people who leave Ukraine do so for temporary and economic reasons, since 2014 many of the most hardcore anti-Ukrainians have left and won’t be back.

  112. Actually, the new language law is supported in most places in the country.

    Someone said it wasn’t 2014 anymore and to get with the times. Indeed. The most pro-Russian regions of Crimea and urban Donbas are gone. A lot of the hardcore pro-Russians in the rest of Ukraine have left, the population is more nationalistic than previously.

    http://www.kiis.com.ua/?lang=rus&cat=reports&id=960&t=10&page=1

    Do you agree or disagree with the opinion that the state should promote the further implementation of the Language Law in all areas?

    Ukraine as a whole: 66.5% agree, 19.8% disagree, 12.8% difficult to say.

    Even in the East only 27.9% disagree (another 16.2% difficult to say). If you want to assume that the “difficult to say” are secretly opposed, that only gives you 44% opposition.

    Otherwise: ethnic Russians disagree more than they agree. But among people who speak Russian at home (both ethnic Russians and ethnic Ukrainians) – more agree with the law than disagree with it. Though if you add all the “difficult to say” to “disagree” – then support for the language law is evenly split within this group.

    Among professional group, the language law is most popular among army and police, followed by professionals an specialists. It is least popular among students and unemployed people.

    Similarly, the law is most popular among wealthy and semi-wealthy Ukrainians, and very poor ones – and least popular among the merely poor ones.

    Overall the law is more popular than unpopular among almost every group of people in every region of the country although the level of popularity varies (most popular in the West, least in the South). The only group that dislikes the law more than likes it are ethnic Russians. Russian-speaking Ukrainians support it.

    It’s good for everybody that the majority ethnic Russian areas of 2013 Ukraine, are no longer within Ukraine.

  113. The Variag… were mostly Wendish and practiced a Baltic variety of Old European religion.

    Do you remember which anti-Normanist was it who posited that and what source they may have had? If you have no time to look, no worries, I’ll try to dig it up. 🙂 I’ve heard all sorts of interesting things from Rodnover acquaintances but this is a first.

    From what I know, the Wends were not one nationality but consisted of several peoples.

    Old European paganism contained human sacrifice

    It was rare. The Old Prussians had sacred birch groves where only few were allowed to enter, no hunting or cutting of trees was permitted there, gatherings were held there to decide on important matters (similar as near the Allting rock in Iceland). Among other things, the fate of the delinquent was decided there occasionally. So maybe this was interpreted as human sacrifice by outsiders? By the way, the Teutonic Knights left the birch groves alone during the initial colonization period after the invasion.

    During critical times or during war, when the ancestors were experiencing severe hardship, it’s possible that some humans were sacrificed, mostly war captives. Some chronicles mention that the Prussians burned captured crusaders to honor the Gods, together with their horses and weapons. This seems kind of ambiguous because this would have been some of the crusaders’ fate anyway and this wasn’t a purely religious manifestation. And, as you know, the Teutons did worse to the Prussians anyway.

    This was already relatively late, so who knows how it was before, but I haven’t encountered any mention of it in the ancestral lore. The ancestors sacrificed a black rooster around the time of the autumnal equinox or a goat, they made a festive meal out of it. And this is mentioned a lot in the lore (especially in connection to the health of the horses). So if this had been common, it would’ve been mentioned.

    The Swedes sacrificed their king during a famine and a time of desperation. Similarly, the whole myth of Druidic divination with human entrails comes from the period when the Druids were surrounded by the Romans and were about to be decimated by them, so this was an act of last resort or an act of desperation. Same with the viking blood eagle… there are only two mentions of it. So it was not at all normal if it happened at all. These things must have happened only during extraordinary times and I don’t think they were a normal part of the ancestral religion at all. As you said, they were probably more normal than how they’ve been depicted in the “The Vikings” series, lol.

    Btw, another myth that has surfaced on and off is that some wives joined their deceased husbands.

  114. ?
    Christians –or at least, I will say, the vast majority of Christians– do not face persecution in Sri Lanka to any meaningful extent based on their religion. Tamils face troubles for being Tamil and a substantial minority of Tamils are Christian. Muslims are, also, another story.

    After the church bombings (by Muslims) in 2019 there was an enormous outpouring of support for Christians (and, to some extent, of anger at Muslims) from the rest of the island. Sri Lanka also receives Christian refugees from Pakistan– heck, Sri Lanka even gets Muslim refugees from Pakistan where they are persecuted by other Muslims.

    Christian communities also experience destruction of their church property, desecration of religious objects, and attacks on their members. An estimated 103 such incidents took place in 2013 and another 111 in 2014.

    The charges I have put in bold are three different things and I don’t see a breakdown which would clarify things, or which would identify the perpetrators by religion; there are (besides Christians) Buddhists, Hindus, and Muslims in Sri Lanka.

    There is also no indication of the cause of these incidents; as I mentioned above, it might easily be connected with ethnic problems, or various sorts of other dispute, or even unrelated to religion (there are 1.5 million Christians in Ceylon, it would be surprising if a certain number of them were not victims of crime).

    This website does not list or number such incidents in the US, so I can’t make a comparison, but I remember a number of such incidents of desecration or vandalism here over the past year, some of them very high-profile and some not so much so.

    I have heard complaints that some Tamil evangelicals engaged in very provocative behavior, like spitting on Hindu idols, and though I haven’t heard of any violence resulting from this, it would, again, not be terribly surprising.

    It may be the case that some Christian communities somewhere in Ceylon face harassment from their Buddhist neighbors or from authorities by reason of their religion, but as for the Lankan Christians I know, there is no feeling of religious persecution or of being under religious pressure at all. Anything can change in the future, of course, but, at present, it is not a bad place to be Christian, and I say this as someone who is not by any means a fan of the Sri Lankan government; in the past on UR I have pointed out some of the ruthless and indefensible things they have done.

    I know people who have lived in both Sri Lanka and Pakistan, and one simply cannot compare the differing atmospheres of the two countries for Christian life.

  115. Bashibuzuk says

    Do you remember which anti-Normanist was it who posited that and what source they may have had? If you have no time to look, no worries, I’ll try to dig it up.

    It is a well known fact that the Rus warriors practiced the cult of Perun and do not seem have been recorded as practicing Odinism. The cult of Perun was more prominent among the Balts than it was among the Slav. IIRC it was Sviatoslav or perhaps even Vladimir in his young years that brought the cult of Perun to Kiev.

    The only Pagan religious relics discovered at Old Ladoga was the typically Old Prussian horse sacrifice (also found in other Wendish locations), nothing that seemed typically linked to Norse religious practices has (to the best of my knowledge) ever been found either at Old Ladoga or Novgorod. Also, one of the most affluent neighborhoods of Novgorod was named Prusskyi Konets, which might indicate that it’s first inhabitants were migrants from among the Old Prussian.

    On the other hand, on Rügen, traces of Odinist burials containing typically Norse jewelry (such as the Molnir hammer pendant) were found several times. Also in Kaup, the Old Prussian majority clearly peacefully coexisted with both Rus (Wends) and Norse merchants. Which brings to your following observation:

    From what I know, the Wends were not one nationality but consisted of several peoples

    They were several Western Slavic tribal confederations who lived side-by-side with the Balts. As I wrote above: Old Prussian population lived peacefully not far from Slavic settlements and exchanged goods with them and also Norse merchants. It also seems that from the religious point of view Old Prussians enjoyed some prestige among other neighboring ethnic groups. This respect was not due to affluent or sophisticated aspects of the Old Prussian culture, there were none such aspects: the Old Prussian culture was very archaic and simple, but to the fact that Old Prussian folks were possibly seen as “pure” or “unadulterated” and played some warrior / priest / shaman role.

    Interestingly, the early Romanovs later claimed being the descendants of an Old Prussian warrior who fled to Rus lands and whose lineage settled in Muscovy:

    https://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D0%93%D0%BB%D0%B0%D0%BD%D0%B4%D0%B0_%D0%9A%D0%B0%D0%BC%D0%B1%D0%B8%D0%BB%D0%BB%D0%B0_%D0%94%D0%B8%D0%B2%D0%BE%D0%BD%D0%BE%D0%B2%D0%B8%D1%87

    Also as I mentioned a couple of times: Innokentyi Gizel’, who wrote the first Synopsis of the history of Rus (in which he claimed that Rus princes were Western Slavs) was a Prussian convert to Orthodox Christianity.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Innocent_(Giesel)

    So there was perhaps a kind of memory of positive relationship between Balto-Slav ethnic groups prior to Christianisation and German colonisation.

    And the staunch hold of the Rugians and later of the Lithuanians to their ancestral faith might also indicate that these Balto-Slav populations kept a stronger link to the organized paganism than did the other Slavs.

    It was rare.

    Yes it was exceedingly rare, but it happened. Medieval Rugians sacrificed Christian prisoners to Sviatovid. It is of course absolutely understandable because the Christians also imposed a baptism or death choice upon the pagan populations. What goes around, comes around.

    a normal part of the ancestral religion at all.

    Well, German and Danish Crusaders described the Rugians’ cult in Rethra and Arkona and it is not something gore or horrific. It was mainly directed towards the well-being of the people: good fortune, great harvests, peace in the land, victory in battle etc.

    some wives joined their deceased husbands.

    This was arguably an old Aryan tradition.

    https://feminisminindia.com/2020/08/07/roop-kanwar-last-known-case-sati-india-relevance-today/

    On the other hand, among the Rus (Rugians, Rugii, Rani) as described by some early Muslim traveler (Ibn Fadlan or Ibn Khordebeh perhaps?), only the daughters inherited anything from the family and brought it to their husbands. The sons inherited only the father weapons and had to conquer wealth to themselves. This might have contributed to turning these young men into a professional pirate / warrior caste, which first worked as mercenaries to the Khazars and then turned against them and carved a large dominion to themselves among the Slav tribes who paid tribute to the Khazars. And of course, just like today these mercenary / rauder gangs were quite possibly multi-ethnic.

  116. Seraphim says

    Can you quote a credible source which said that Christians ‘imposed baptism or death’ upon pagans (and therefore ‘deserving’ to be sacrificed in their turn)?

  117. It is a well known fact that the Rus warriors practiced the cult of Perun

    Of course, it is well known that they worshipped Perun. And, of course, this is very prominent in the Baltic culture, but I didn’t realize it’s less prominent in the Slavic world, I thought they existed in parallel that’s why I was wondering if there was anything specifically Baltic about it. I suppose in the West they worshipped Svantovit and in the East Perun.

    “Славься! Славься! Перун –
    Бог златокудрый!
    Он посылает стрелы во врагов,
    Верных ведет к победе,
    Славу поем мы ему
    И на пиру и в сечи.”

    Yes, there is mention of Old Prussian spiritual centers in some sources, claiming that people from different places used to travel there to receive divination. There was a place called Romuva there.

    Very cool and interesting about Prusskiy Konets. Do you think they settled there in the 13th century fleeing from the Knights or earlier? Btw, when they mention the burial tradition in Novgorod being a funeral pyre and that being the proof it’s Scandinavian… this was the burial tradition among the Western Balts, too, including Couronians and Old Prussians.

    And re: the Old Prussian warrior who fled (the Roerich painting is quite beautiful)… at least from the linguistic point of view this is a good guess. Because the name Kabile has a Western Baltic ending and there is a place with that name in Western Latvia.

    I also wanted to ask your thoughts on a different topic from a much more distant time: What do you think about the Fatyanovo culture? They recently found a rather big deposit there.

  118. Boomthorkell says

    Sounds like if Russia owned them and did the same, they’d probable get 40% as well, if not the other 60, ha ha.

    Well, that’s if these polls are reliable anyway. I guess if I accepted the Crimean referendum, whose to say these polls might not also be accurate?

    Most people are probably just content to live. Ideally, of course, they’ll live under a new Tsar rather than an EU Reichscommissioner.

  119. Boomthorkell says

    People really do tend to forget what a wide ideological umbrella being a nationalist is. I mean, I’m an American nationalist (which I think these days has some similarly broad objectives: end of empire, immigration moratorium, and a land bridge to Alaska), but even then I think anyone going Nazi larper, besides being distasteful to me (if less so than a transgender-worshipper), is more an FBI risk than anything else. Individually, it is sad, and I can see how they ended up there, but there are much healthier and more sane political avenues.

    It’s not like those Russian guys joining an EU-backed Ukrainian faction are going to end Central Asian migration to Moscow. Silly, really. They’d be better off mauling poorly-behaved guest workers.

  120. Russian will continue to be allowed in elementary schools but not in secondary schools (unless in a foreign language class).

    They aren’t allowed…

    So in your world everyone other than English speakers in the USA is being repressed. Do they have Czech language universities in France or Germany? I guess you would be repressed if you lived there.

    Clearly, if the majority of people use Russian as their daily vernacular, they should have the right to educate their children in it. I never fucking said that France has a good policy when it comes to linguistic minorities. Russian speakers are not even a linguistic minority, this makes the situation even more ridiculous.

    You should rebrand as a BLM activist.

    Actually, I support BLM burning America down. I just oppose BLM in CZ.

    Nonsense. Outside of the Donbas war zone, migration is mostly temporary (people leave for 6 months or so and return) and to boost family finances.

    Actually, I would say the quality of life in DNR outside the frontline is better than in Ukraine. Cheaper gas, running water (Lisichansk was recently cut off from water supplies, it happens there all the time), factories running…

  121. Still, it’s a shame the Slavic Federation is in its current state of disunity.

    This is why the Banderite state needs an utter defeat, with debanderisation, denazification, lustration and humiliation.

  122. It’s not like those Russian guys joining an EU-backed Ukrainian faction are going to end Central Asian migration to Moscow. Silly, really. They’d be better off mauling poorly-behaved guest workers.

    Russia sees far more Ukrainian immigrants than Uzbeks and Tajiks.

  123. Bashibuzuk says

    Adam of Bremen, Saxo Grammaticus and others of their ilk are credible enough in your regard ?

    It was a war, a cultural and religious war where thousands of years of locsl tradition were erased and replaced by an exotic cult.

  124. Bashibuzuk says

    Very cool and interesting about Prusskiy Konets. Do you think they settled there in the 13th century fleeing from the Knights or earlier? Btw, when they mention the burial tradition in Novgorod being a funeral pyre and that being the proof it’s Scandinavian… this was the burial tradition among the Western Balts, too, including Couronians and Old Prussians.

    The Slav were newcomer in the Old Ladoga and Novgorod area (hence Новый Город) in the 8th and 9th centuries. In fact a credible and non-ambiguous Norse presence was attested in the area in the 7th century, but on a very small scale and it looks like the Norse got replaced or admixed and assimilated by the Slav who settled the place on a much larger scale.

    The probable reason of the Slavs moving to this inhospitable area (because let’s be quite honest: it is beautiful, but from the agricultural point of view it’s rather far from Eden) was double: fur trade and wars to the south west.

    Already in the 8th century the Polabian and Obodrite Slavs started losing ground to their Christian Germanic neighbors. Moravian Slavs got baptized and Magyar immediately conquered some of them.

    Given that other areas in between were settled by their Baltic cousins and Slavic brothers, the settlers fleeing the early stages of Christian Drang nach Osten had to travel further North. And they only could travel by boats on rivers, there were no roads. That is how they ended up on Ilmen and Ladoga. The remains of the horse sacrifice that is possibly of Old Prussian origin are documented in Old Ladoga in the early phase of the Slav settlement. It looks like some Balts moved in with the Slav settlers.

    Fatyanovo culture

    I think it’s the original (proto)-Balto-Slav culture before a clear separate identity emerged for both branches, which probably happened only in the early Migration Period and was a gradual process that lasted centuries. Arguably the Balts and the Slavs became only clearly separate and cut from each other after the Drang nach Osten was finished in the 12th – 13th century. Balts were probably more archaic (in the positive sense of the term).

    I believe prior that it was a continuum of tribal communities of Balts, Slavs and Ugric populations living more or less peacefully side by side in the area. Just like in ancient Gaul or Iberic peninsula prior to Roman conquest and colonisation, different tribes, some of which had a very different ethnic background, lived side by side under the spiritual authority of the pagan priests (Druids = Древ-виды). Just like in Hindustan, where different ethnic groups were mainly under the spiritual authority of the Brahmin Varna and had also their Ksatrya Varna even if some were Aryan and other Dravidian.

    Something similar existed in Centrsl Europe since the Unetice Culture times: a more or less harmonious culturaloutline uniting the descendants of Megalithic, Bell Beaker and Corded Ware Cultures. It took some 1000 years of Roman and then Christian Germanic and Slav (Rus and Polish) physical and cultural warfare to destroy this relatively harmonious coexistence established after Tolensee battle.

    Pagan Rome started that what Christian Rome and Byzantium finished. They debased the European people, destroyed their traditional thousand years old cultural identity and opened their minds up to the Semitic spiritual invasion.

    “They make it a desert and they call that peace”…

    Before that a network of cultural, spiritual and economic exchange spanning the European continent between the Baltic and Gaul existed for millenia (the so-called Amber road was a part of that). This network of trading paths, roads, river ways and sea routes was already active in the Chalcolithic and was stabilized and unified under the Unetice, Nordic Bronze and the ensuing Celtic and Lusatian cultural ensembles.

    Christian faith put the last nail in the coffin of this cultural outlook when the last Lithuanian pagan converted. Thousands of years of history erased. Roots lost, ancestors betrayed.

    Only today some among us, few and far between realize that something important was lost.

    But some others call that progress…

    I personally do not think that any progress built upon betrayal of one’s ancestry is worth it. The tree of life should grow from roots to branches, you don’t get healthy branches by cutting the roots and burning the trunk. If you want to one day reach the stars you first have to hold dear the stones and rocks under which the bones of your ancestors sleep forever.

    https://youtu.be/DHL1NDbRuiM

    Good to see that some young people realize this. I only hope they will not make a mockery out of it because of all the postmodern brain-rot…

  125. Seraphim says

    And you one of those trying to revive the ‘local traditions’ (human sacrifices) against the ‘exotic cult’ in Russia? Are you a ‘Rodnoverist’, or an ‘Anastasianist’ (a ‘ringing trees’ huger), or a ‘Viking metalist’ (not that there is much difference between these circuses)? Wolfsangel? Azov battalion?

  126. I posted a lot of poll details in another post. The poll results track with election data so there is no reason to assume they aren’t reliable.

    The Crimean data seem to be reliable also.

  127. Clearly, if the majority of people use Russian as their daily vernacular, they should have the right to educate their children in it

    The majority of Russian-speakers in Ukraine support the language policy including Ukrainian schools. Sorry if that hurts you.

    I never fucking said that France has a good policy

    You compared such policies to “Africa.” I am not aware of African countries pursuing such policies but I am aware of several European peoples doing this sort of thing, such as the Baltics, French, etc.

    Actually, I would say the quality of life in DNR outside the frontline is better than in Ukraine

    Frontline includes much of the most populated areas. Incomes are down, and percentage who have left is much higher. Many have even left for Kharkiv and Kiev, not just Russia.

  128. I appreciate the sincere love of our people you have, and you have expressed yourself very eloquently. You deserve much respect for these things. But:

    Pagan Rome started that what Christian Rome and Byzantium finished. They debased the European people

    It’s hard to regard a culture that produced the word’s finest music, architecture, literature, etc. while also creating godlike technology, fielding armies capable of conquering the entire world, and bringing unheard of compassion and mercy to much of the world – as “debased” in some way.

    Before that a network of cultural, spiritual and economic exchange spanning the European continent between the Baltic and Gaul existed for millenia (the so-called Amber road was a part of that)

    Well, yes, such trading networks existed everywhere, such in sub-Saharan Africa or among North American natives. This is not unique. Christendom, OTOH, created something truly revolutionary and unique.

    Thousands of years of history erased. Roots lost, ancestors betrayed.

    You have a rather patronizing attitude towards your ancestors who understood the pagan world much better than you ever will, and who chose to leave it.

    Only today some among us, few and far between realize that something important was lost.

    I think it’s reasonable to lament the fact that nobody wrote down the old legends, stories, and beliefs of our people. It’s unfortunate that Jesuits did not yet exist to study and record all of that. But I don’t think that most people would want to go back to such a crude life of tribal warfare, occasional human sacrifice, feeling oneself at the mercy of sky and rivers. To no longer be the children and heirs of the Creator, and revert to the status of subjects of the creation.

    If our people hadn’t converted to Christianity in the 10th century, do you think they would have avoided later Islamification, under the Tatars? I doubt it. I think a large Slavic “Pakistan” (with a few pagan holdouts in isolated places in the far north) would have been worse than what we have.

    But what if they had avoided both of those Abrahamic faiths? A few more millennia of primitivism leading, eventually, to something like India which is not so nice when stripped of the fruits of its westernization.

  129. AltanBakshi says

    Please, you should first become enlightened, before voicing such opinions to followers of other religions. As long as you’re not enlightened, you are just talking about something that is completely hypothetical. God is more concrete idea/concept for most Christians.


    “Universe is a Giant Enlightenment Machine”

    Grasping much?

  130. AltanBakshi says

    Any flow of “individual ” information will eventually dissolve into the Whole and come to extinguishing its illusive individual nature.

    H-E-R-E-S-Y

    Buddhadharma is not Advaita Vedanta, we explicitly refute and deny Monist philosophy in all of it’s variations. Bashi such viewpoints in the guise of Dharma is one of the root reasons for our past demise in India. What you are now describing is very close to Shankara’s philosophy.

  131. AltanBakshi says

    [The Buddha said,] Now, Mahāmati, what is perfect knowledge? It is realised when one casts aside the discriminating notions of form, name, reality, and character; it is the inner realisation by noble wisdom. This perfect knowledge, Mahāmati, is the essence of the Tathāgata-garbha.[7]

    Perfect knowledge is Paramita of Prajna. Shortly put: all things grow and decay, change, are unsatisfactory, all things are products or fabrications of preceding phenomena and conditions, in such way ultimately their characteristics are same, but it does not mean that all things will collapse into one, or that one day individual mindstreams will unite into one.

    transformed into the “Bright Mirror Wisdom.”

    What is mirror? Mirror is something that reflects other things and a good mirror reflects very clearly.

    What Blessed Buddha tells to queen Srimala concerning her future? That one day she will become a Buddha with a name of Samantaprabha, not that she will one day dissolve into the Whole.

  132. Novgorod area

    In Novgorod they found Prussian / Lithuanian ritual wands (стержень, жезл). Status symbols.

    Fatyanovo… I think it’s the original (proto)-Balto-Slav culture

    Interesting. The area, which is quite large, matches with Baltic hydronyms. The phenotype is close, too. Btw, do you know if that area was warmer during the Fatyanovo times (~2000 BC)?

    before a clear separate identity emerged for both branches, which probably happened only in the early Migration Period

    Hmm…. are you saying only in 300AD? It is believed they separated around 1500BC. Around the 7th century AD the Baltic languages themselves were already separate. The Balts lived in a large area (scattered, of course, not densely populated) across the current Russia, Belarus and Ukraine (even around Dniepr where they were in contact with Iranians) and then there was a Slavic expansion much later that assimilated them (5th century AD?).

    The Russian geneticist Oleg Balanovskiy has brought forward some interesting revelations in this regard. His recent studies showed a very significant Baltic layer in the Russian genofond.

    Of course, they lived in close contact and the linguistic similarities are quite amazing (especially with the root words and when you hear Ukrainian and Old Russian, modern Russian has kind of veered in its own direction phonetically).

    Balts were probably more archaic (in the positive sense of the term).

    Yes, they are very close to the original Indo-European and were kind of tucked away. Vladimir Toporov (whom I highly admire) actually believes that Slavs arose from Balts.

    Only today some among us, few and far between realize that something important was lost.

    It is not all lost. My observation is that it has grown in the last 10-15 years. Of course, people are different, some are less, others are more serious. Btw, thanks for the song by Srub. Very beautiful lyrics. I also really like how he talked about the symbolism of the trail in the woods (тропа). A trail in our conscious that connects us to that world.

  133. Seraphim says

    People who can’t believe that ‘an Absolute God created an imperfect world’ (the ‘world’ is necessarily imperfect) are the people arrested at the ‘egocentristic’ stage of cognitive development. Who believe that the world was created for the satisfaction of all their urges and are angry that they don’t obtain these satisfactions whenever they want. And that they don’t have to work for their own salvation.

  134. Bashibuzuk says

    The Balts lived in a large area (scattered, of course, not densely populated) across the current Russia, Belarus and Ukraine (even around Dniepr where they were in contact with Iranians) and then there was a Slavic expansion much later that assimilated them (5th century AD?).

    The Slavs (Antes) already occupied this area in the 4th century. Jordanes describes in his Getica that Antes lived in the territory of modern day Ukraine and Belarus and got conquered by the Goths in the 2nd century AD. Tacitus also mentioned the Antes in his Germania supposedly written in the late first or early second century AD (although this book is of dubious origin and might be in fact a fake). The Zarubintsy culture, seen as proto-Slavic has been dated between 3rd century BC and 1st century AD.

    The later expansion of Slavs to the South west is due to the Migration Period, when their Germanic neighbors (and most importantly their Goth overlords) got displaced under the pressure and command of the Huns. The Slavs used this period to settle the lands that were emptied by the Huns from their German and Vlakh inhabitants. By that time the Slav and the Balts were already distinct.

    Yes, they are very close to the original Indo-European and were kind of tucked away. Vladimir Toporov (whom I highly admire) actually believes that Slavs arose from Balts.

    The Slav and the Balts arose from a common ancestral population. My personal theory is that Balts = Balto-Slavs + Ugric Akozino-Malar influence, while the Slavs = Balto-Slav + Celtic La Tene influence + Eastern Germanic influence. This is of course excessively simplified.

    My observation is that it has grown in the last 10-15 years.

    It should expand even more as paleogenomics develop further.

    A trail in our conscious that connects us to that world.

    Yes there is something like that opening up when you get truly interested into these times long past.

  135. Bashi:

    Tacitus also mentioned the Antes in his Germania supposedly written in the late first or early second century AD (although this book is of dubious origin and might be in fact a fake).

    You think Germania by Tacitus is a fake? LOL
    Yes, he used secondary sources and was never there, but…

    The Zarubintsy culture, seen as proto-Slavic has been dated between 3rd century BC and 1st century AD.

    Yes, apparently this was the culture that moved into the Dniepr area around that time, as described by Marija Gimbutas (a Lithuanian anthropologist whose Kurgan theory was recently substantiated by genetic studies).

    My personal theory is that Balts = Balto-Slavs + Ugric Akozino-Malar influence, while the Slavs = Balto-Slav + Celtic La Tene influence + Eastern Germanic influence

    Yes, Gimbutas also says that the Celtic La Tene culture was present in Silesia, Poland and Western Ukraine (!!). 300BC.

  136. Boomthorkell says

    I’m sort of a fan of Karlin’s idea of reclaiming Bandera as a devoted Rus(yn) nationalist. Misguided, surely, but one who tried.

    I mean, it surely throws them for a loop, ha ha.

    So long as Russia stays strong though, absorbs Belarus, and hopefully a good chunk of Malorossiya, it will be fine, and things will return to tradition.

  137. AltanBakshi says

    Okay, must be part of the divine plan, but we don’t have anything to worry, God is after all perfectly rightful and good.

    And that they don’t have to work for their own salvation.

    I fully agree, only a complete moron or a дебил believes so.

    Who believe that the world was created for the satisfaction of all their urges and are angry that they don’t obtain these satisfactions whenever they want.

    Are you describing people who are some kind of solipsist psychopaths or hardcore narcissists?

  138. Rattus Norwegius says

    I was refering to the territory of modern ‘new states of Germany’ who’s then Slavic inhabitants, Adam of Bremen met. The region was very sparsly populated prior to the arrival of Slavs and filled with swamps. During the Slavic migration into the area, what was the nature of the migration? Was it a conquest combined with displacement, subjugation, or did the Slavs simply outnumber the prior residents and set the tone for local culture? Many think of Western Europe, including Germany as more advanced than Eastern Europe, but was that the case around 400-600 AD?

  139. Bashibuzuk says

    You think Germania by Tacitus is a fake? LOL

    This book has a very convoluted story to say the least. I don’t say I am positive about it being a forgery, but there is a non-negligeable possibility that it is .

    The three minor works of Tacitus – the Dialogus, the Agricola, and the Germania – were little known before the renaissance. However a number of manuscripts did survive at that time, and were copied. Unfortunately most of the originals were then lost, and the details are disputed. The monasteries were very reluctant to part with their treasures (even if they didn’t look bother after them) and so the process whereby the MSS were ‘liberated’ is usually very unclear.

    The sole survivor is the Codex Aesinas Latinus 8 (E), which was discovered by Prof. Cesare Annibaldi in the private library of Count Aurelio Guglielmi Balleani of Jesi in the autumn of 1902. The MS was thought lost again, but in 1980 was in the hands of Count Balleschi-Balleani, the great-nephew of Count Aurelio Guglielmi Balleani of Jesi.5 It was on loan to the Biblioteca Nazionale in Florence, and was damaged in the flooding of the Arno in 1966. However in 1994 it was sold to the Biblioteca Nazionale in Rome, where it is now Cod. Vitt. Em. 1631.11

    https://www.tertullian.org/rpearse/tacitus/

    Basically we have a single copy that was nearly unknown before Renaissance, was lost an rediscovered several times etc.

    Yes, Gimbutas also says that the Celtic La Tene culture was present in Silesia, Poland and Western Ukraine (!!). 300BC.

    Correct, the Celts were there, they intermarried and intermixed with Dacian and Thracian tribes and later on (adter being Romanized) ended up as being known as Vlakhs (Влахи = Slavic cognate to the Germanic Welshe = Gaul).

    Regarding Balts, I have never suspected what a strong influence the Uralic – Permian Akozino-Malar (also called Akozino-Ananino) culture had on its neighbors from the Urals all the way up to the Baltic shores. I strongly suggest you look into it, the information is becoming more available on the internet and it is really quite an eye opener.

  140. Bashibuzuk says

    will be transformed into a far stressful place.

    Should read “will be transformed into a far less stressful place”.

  141. Bashibuzuk says

    We don’t know what happened exactly during that era. Slav migration in the area is not well documented, if it is documented at all. We know that the area was a contact zone of Celtic (in a broad sense of the term: Celtic-Thracian, Celtic-Dacian, Celtic-Getae etc. That is ancestors to the Vlakhs), Germanic and Balto-Slavic populations already prior to the Migration Period.

    What we know is that the arrival of the Huns has caused a great change to the balance between these different ethnic groups. After the demise of the Hun, we find the Slavs (Wends) living as far West as the Elbe. Further South-west, we find Slavs as far as modern day Slovenia. How exactly this happened is unclear, but we know that at least a portion of Slavs were into the Hun hordes along some of their Germanic neighbors. We also know that many Germanic tribal confederations moved into the Roman Empire territory and abandoned their former territory further to the North-East.

    It is possible that the Slav simply settled the territory abandoned by the Germans, but they might also have conquered it under Hun leadership. It could also have been a mix of both: conquest and colonisation of emptied territory. We know that in the 7th and 8th centuries the Slav raided the Byzantine territory on their own and also as foot soldiers of the Bulgarian and Avar Khaganates. Perhaps something similar happened also under the Hun.

  142. culture that produced the word’s finest music, architecture, literature,

    I don’t think humanistically educated people could say that. It has been consensus for centuries of educated people, that Greece of classical times has produced the world’s finest architecture, literature, etc. And there is no doubt that the consensus was accurate, when you start to read the ancient texts, and saw how wonderful they are.

    The alternative rivals to the pinnacle of culture in classical Greece, might be Ancient India (e.g. the beauty of the Vedic hymns), and possibly the writing of Old Testament (judged as works of literature, rather than history – e.g. Genesis, Book of Job) and pre-classical Greece (e.g. Homer).

    The cultural area where the modern world has exceeded the ancient world, is possibly in music and opera, or in a few of the new visual technology-based innovations like films, oil paintings (and possibly now video games).

    But we cannot deny that foundation stones for our civilization’s complex achievement in music, and the Western system of harmony, was planted by music theory of ancient Greece, while the inspiration for the renaissance of art, was Greek/Roman literature and ruins.

    Note at the same time, that living conditions for average people were terrible at those times of cultural achievement (only a minority of residents of Classical Athens were even citizens). As Nietzsche and many other writers have noted, man’s cultural pinnacles, did not coincide with idylls of human happiness.

    crude life of tribal warfare,

    In the hunter-gatherer, pre-agriculture, world – life might not have been always as bad as was imagined by Hobbes. For example, hunter-gatherer peoples that still exist today, have surprisingly healthy hearts, which doesn’t quite sound like how Hobbes would imagine. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(17)30752-3/fulltext

    The most horrible on average lifeconditions of human history (although the birth of culture) likely began as a result of stages of history, that were triggered by the invention of agriculture, and resulted in economies built on looting of settlements, and enslavement of population.

  143. AnonfromTN says

    It is amazing how the discussion in this thread veered towards ancient history of proto-Slavs/proto-Balts and proto-Germanics. I am 99% sure that Egor Ligachev knew nothing about all of this and did not care. He was intellectually limited person further blinded by rigid ideology.

    Sometimes he was right, pretty much like non-working clock shows correct time twice a day.

  144. Seraphim says

    You have come to age in the atheistic-revolutionary anti-Church and anti-Russian atmosphere which still linger in Russia, let’s face it. Hundred years of atheistic brainwashing left severe scars in mentality that can’t be healed overnight. I wonder how much have you learned from Fr. Saltykov, if you can speak of Orthodoxy which created and preserved the Russian nation (making it a great nation at that), formed its character, gave her humane laws, a ‘cloud of saints’ and martyrs who gave their lives for its defense, as the criminal organization that perverted the souls of the Buddha-like ‘pagans’ of your imagination by imposing the ‘Abrahamic religion’ (whose demise you eagerly wait for) on them. You disparage thousand years of Russian history.

  145. Coconuts says

    But we cannot deny that foundation stones for our civilization’s complex achievement in music, and the Western system of harmony, was planted by music theory of ancient Greece, while the inspiration for the renaissance of art, was Greek/Roman literature and ruins.

    At the same time the art and literature which most self-consciously mimicked Greek and Roman models in the 16th and 17th century now can seem quite artificial and larpy. I know just enough Latin to see that Virgil and Horace were great poets, but they seem distant, in a way that Dante and St. Augustine don’t.

    This makes me think that after late antiquity culturally things had gone in different directions, probably under the combined influence of the changing cultural and religious/philosophical climate, represented by church fathers like Augustine, and the rougher warrior culture of the Germanic peoples who succeeded the Romans. You seem to see the impact of this in the later emergence of important genres that largely didn’t exist in Classical times, like prose fiction, sermons and memoir literature, or the renewed vigor of drama and satire and the emergence of modern history writing in the 17th century.

  146. It has been consensus for centuries of educated people, that Greece of classical times has produced the world’s finest architecture, literature, etc

    Is there consensus that the great 19tn entirely novels, and early modern to modern dramas, pale in comparison to works by the ancients? Likewise with architecture. I find that hard to believe.

    As Nietzsche and many other writers have noted, man’s cultural pinnacles, did not coincide with idylls of human happiness

    The Russian Nietzsche, Leontiev, was generally correct when he observed that great inequality is necessary for great art.

    In the hunter-gatherer, pre-agriculture, world – life might not have been always as bad as was imagined by Hobbes. For example, hunter-gatherer peoples that still exist today, have surprisingly healthy hearts, which doesn’t quite sound like how Hobbes would imagine

    I agree that people will be healthier in a world where they must kill their food and kill other people to survive. My point is that those people were killing each other in huge numbers, per capita, as shown by modern ethnography and archeology. Europe in the time of the 17th century religious wars was far less deadly than in in-Christian tribal times:

    https://ourworldindata.org/ethnographic-and-archaeological-evidence-on-violent-deaths

  147. It has been consensus for centuries of educated people, that Greece of classical times has produced the world’s finest architecture, literature, etc

    I could be wrong, but I always had the impression that in classical Greece it was generally considered that Homer’s Iliad was the paramount example of literature, which would mean that pre-classical Greece rather than classical Greece produced the finest literature, if one were to take such opinions seriously.

  148. FWIW this list by a modern critic does place Classical Greek works at the top:

    https://www.theguardian.com/stage/2015/sep/02/michael-billington-101-greatest-plays

    Also FWIW, while I did see an incredible Oedipus Rex in Moscow (Vakhtangov), I would say that this surpassed Chekhov (Fomenko) or even Williams (Sovremmenik, 20+ years ago). But this depends on staging, direction, etc.

  149. AltanBakshi says

    This perfect knowledge, Mahāmati, is the essence of the Tathāgata-garbha.

    Our true nature is our dependent nature, and our dependent nature is the Buddha nature(Tathagata-Garbha), we all reflect each other, when the mirror, which is our mind, is purified from all stains(kleshas) it will be transformed into Ādarśajñāna, great perfect mirror-like Wisdom.

    Bashi beware Japanese teachers, that well has been poisoned long time ago, only confusion have they spread in the West, especially in the USA. No respect for Vinaya, a strong sectarian attitude, only cherishing some particular teachings and insulting others. In America they have conferred Dharma lineages to beings who have no renunciation or compassion, made a mockery out of them.

    http://cdn.tricycle.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/street-zen-2.jpg

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Issan_Dorsey
    Issan Dorsey, a former drag queen and a legit “monk” of Soto Zen school.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enkyo_Pat_O%27Hara
    Enkyo Pat O’Hara, a lesbian “abbot” of Hakuun Yasutani’s “Zen” lineage.

    It’s one thing to commit sins and then repent(though homosexuality is a heavy transgression), but being in a homosexual relationship and being a Buddhist monastic at the same time?! In Japan and especially in USA we can see tangibly how there can be a religion that can externally and remotely resemble Buddhism, but is in reality a demonic faith masquerading in the clothing of Dharma.

    That is also why Ch’an/Zen is perfectly suitable for the building of a Western Buddhist tradition: it is more lean and nimble as a spiritual approach and quite efficient in working on one’s own mind through one’s own mind only to attain that individual mind’s liberation from the ignorance of it’s own nature and achieve the cessation of suffering through this process. You basically only need your own mind and your own life to walk this path. Everything else is optional or even superfluous.

    Chan is just a part of the whole, one set of instruction lineages of the Chinese Buddhism and Mahayana. It’s extremely dangerous to teach such topics to Westerners, if they lack a solid foundation in Buddhist basics, same is true with Tantra and Dzogchen. Only when Dharma is grounded in the west, and there is a genuine Western Vinaya following Sangha, then it’s time to teach Chan, Tantra and Dzogchen, before establishment of proper foundations such teachings will just reinforce subtle forms of grasping like monism or even nihilism.

    https://www.academia.edu/2269031/Zen_spirituality_in_a_secular_age_Charles_Taylor_and_Zen_Buddhism_in_the_West

    Just like Suzuki presented Zen to the West in a way that catered to the Western preoccupation with a universally valid religion, the presenters of Zen as a living spirituality have made use of the Western preference for individuality and authenticity. As Sharf has pointed out, the Western conception of Zen has to a disproportionate extent been influenced by the contemporary Japanese lay reform movement called Sanbōkyōdan
    (Three Treasures Association). This Zen movement,that has no formal connection to the Japanese Rinzai and Sōtō Zen schools, wasfounded by Yasutani Hakuun (1885-1973) in 1954. The Sanbōkyōdan movement has, according to some of its critics, effectively purged Zen of much of its traditional Buddhist connotations, and advocates a universal Zen spirituality for practitioners of any religious faith that single-mindedly stresses the importance of an experience of enlightenment (kenshō), much more so than traditional Japanese Sōtō or Rinzai Zen schools.

    The Zen spirituality of the Sanbōkyōdan movement fits very well within the immanent frame of Western culture. This is not altogether surprising, since the movement was a modern innovation, an attempt to reform the Zen tradition in order to make it more compatible with Western modernity. Sharf suggests that it might be more appropriate to classify Sanbōkyōdan, with its disdain for scriptural study and its shrill polemics against the orthodox Rinzai and Sōtō Zen establishment, under the heading of the so-called Japanese New Religions.

    As you can see, already badly damaged and faulty Japanese Buddhism gave a birth to a more extreme heresies when coming in contact with American culture. Blessed Chakravartin Ashoka, who is cherished universally among all legit Buddhists, both Mahayana and Theravada, would have very well known what to do with such fake monastics, sad that we don’t have anymore such wise rulers…

  150. Bashibuzuk says

    You disparage thousand years of Russian history

    Not at all, but I keep in mind that a thousand years ago the descendents of the Corded Ware folks were already living in the Slavic lands for a few thousand years. The latest Y haplogroup R1a attested in Russia is some 15 thousand years old. A thousand years is small compared to this.

    You see, I am not a Wahhabi-Salafi type of person who honestly (although naively) believes that prior to the advent of Islam there was only ignorance and darkness in the World (Jahiliyah), and that without the Blessed Qur’an and the Greatest among the Messengers spreading the Great Truths that Allah bestowed upon him, humans would be dammed for all Eternity without any chance of escaping Hell (Al Jahannemah).

    I have chose to believe that there is a flow of causes and consequences that allows for the appearance and entails the disappearance of phenomena. It’s like the waves of the sea: wind, tides, and currents allow them to arise and transform them (while the sea below stays silent and dark). There were causes allowing the rise of the Christendom among the Slav. There are causes that currently entail the decline of the Christendom among the Slav and elsewhere.

    For me Christendom is just a phenomenon, as is Russian Federation in its current form. All phenomena are imperfect and impermanent, they are subject to change and decay. But the genetic lineage of my ancestors was there long before Prince Vladimir of Kiev (the son of Mal’ka – the Khazarian concubine of the Prince Sviatoslav) decided to impose Byzantine Christianity upon the Rus, and hopefully my lineage will still exist for some time in the future, even though it is not connected to Russia of Christendom anymore.

    That is why they call us Gentiles, we care about our people, about our clan, about our blood. I wish other Russians were also more aware of their deep roots, that would have helped the descendants of the Corded Ware folks to thrive and multiply. But if Russians fail to multiply, I will do my best to ensure that my clan survives and evolves in the right direction. A direction which from my perspective is geared towards Buddhadharma. We will work towards our Enlightenment with our means, whether weak or strong, great or small…

    And you have a great time of the day, wherever you are !

  151. Bashibuzuk says

    VIMALAKIRTI SUTRA

    Shariputra: Goddess, what prevents you from transforming yourself out of your female state?

    Goddess: Although I have sought my “female state” for these twelve years, I have not yet found it. Reverend Shariputra, if a magician were to incarnate a woman by magic, would you ask her, “What prevents you from transforming yourself out of your female state?”

    Shariputra: No! Such a woman would not really exist, so what would there be to transform?

    Goddess: Just so, reverend Shariputra, all things do not really exist. Now, would you think, “What prevents one whose nature is that of a magical incarnation from transforming herself out of her female state?

    Thereupon, the goddess employed her magical power to cause the elder Shariputra to appear in her form and to cause herself to appear in his form. Then the goddess, transformed into Shariputra, said to Shariputra, transformed into a goddess, “Reverend Shariputra, what prevents you from transforming yourself out of your female state?

    And Shariputra, transformed into the goddess, replied, “I no longer appear in the form of a male! My body has changed into the body of a woman! I do not know what to transform!”

    The goddess continued, “If the elder could again change out of the female state, then all women could also change out of their female states. All women appear in the form of women in just the same way as the elder appears in the form of a woman. While they are not women in reality, they appear in the form of women. With this in mind, the Buddha said, “In all things, there is neither male nor female.”

    Then the goddess released her magical power and each returned to their ordinary form. She then said to him, “Reverend Shariputra, what have you done with your female form?”

    Shariputra: I neither made it nor did I change it.

    Goddess: Just so, all things are neither made nor changed, and that they are not made and not changed, that is the teaching of the Buddha.

  152. AltanBakshi says

    For me Christendom is just a phenomenon, as is Russian Federation in its current form. All phenomena are imperfect and impermanent, they are subject to change and decay.

    One could say same of Buddhism?

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1d/One_of_the_daughters_of_the_dragon_king_who_lives_in_then_bottom_of_the_sea.jpg

    Are you trying to use Vimalakirti Sutra in defence of what exactly? Only thing your excerpt does prove, in addition of importance of having the Middle Way -view in regards of concepts, is that one’s gender does not matter when one is trying to get Enlightened, it is a common trope in Sutras that venerable Shariputra is representing the Shravakayana view of Dharma, there’s a very similar occasion with venerable Shariputra in the Lotus Sutra.

    Mañjuśrī answered: “Yes, they will. There is the daughter of the nāga(dragon)
    king Sāgara who is only eight years old. She is wise; her faculties are sharp;
    and she also well knows all the faculties and deeds of sentient beings. She
    has attained the power of recollection. She preserves all the profound secret
    treasures taught by the buddhas, enters deep meditation, and is well capable
    of discerning all dharmas. She instantly produced the thought of enlightenment(bodhicitta) and attained the stage of nonretrogression(acala. 8th bhumi). She has unhindered eloquence and thinks of sentient beings with as much compassion as if they were her own children. Her virtues are perfect. Her thoughts and explanations are subtle and extensive, merciful, and compassionate. She has a harmonious mind and has attained enlightenment.”

    The Bodhisattva Prajñākūṭa said: “I see the Tathāgata Śākyamuni who
    has been incessantly carrying out difficult and severe practices for immeasurable kalpas, accumulating merit and virtue while seeking the bodhisattva
    path. Looking into the great manifold cosmos, there is not a single place
    even the size of a mustard seed where this bodhisattva has not abandoned
    his life for the sake of sentient beings. He attained the path to enlightenment
    only after this. It is hard to believe that this girl will instantly attain complete enlightenment.”

    Before he had finished speaking the daughter of the nāga king suddenly
    appeared in their presence. Bowing until her forehead touched their feet, she
    withdrew to one side and spoke these verses in praise:

    The Buddha is deeply versed
    In the characteristics of good and evil,
    The Lotus Sutra
    And he completely illuminates the ten directions.
    His subtle and pure Dharma body
    Is endowed with the thirty-two marks;
    With the eighty good characteristics
    Is his Dharma body adorned.
    He is adored by devas and humans,
    And honored by nāgas.
    There is no sentient being
    Who does not pay him homage.
    Moreover, that I will attain enlightenment
    Upon hearing him
    Can only be known by a buddha.
    I will reveal the teaching of the Mahayana
    And save suffering sentient beings.

    At that time Śāriputra spoke to the daughter of the nāga king, saying:
    “You say that you will soon attain the highest path. This is difficult to believe.
    Why is this? The female body is polluted; it is not a fit vessel for the Dharma.
    How can you attain highest enlightenment?”

    https://www.bdk.or.jp/document/dgtl-dl/dBET_T0262_LotusSutra_2007.pdf

    Yep Dharma is vast, we even have dragon maidens(龍女)

  153. Bashibuzuk says

    One could say same of Buddhism?

    Absolutely.

    And this is why one should not mistake the finger for the moon.

    https://terebess.hu/zen/hakuin/img/MonkeyMoon1.jpg

    Take care, kalyana mitra!

  154. Seraphim says

    You chose to believe that you and your fantasies are the most important things in the world. Characteristic for people who didn’t progress beyond the egocentric stage of mental development. It became a prison.

  155. consensus that the great 19tn entirely novel

    I’m not sure even 19th century verse seems like it is aiming at the same level, as the great works of ancient literature, and the 19th century prose and opera (despite claims of e.g. Wagner) was already having a much more modest aim, as continued into the 20th century cinema.

    But in earlier modern times, perhaps parts of the writings of Shakespeare (or even Dante, Cervantes?), had tried to reach, or reached, to some of the heights?

    It’s a paradox of the ancient world though. Classical Athens even with all its slaves, had a population around 200,000 people. This is a similar size as a city like Bratz, Zlatoust or Orsk in Russia, or perhaps Des Moines in USA. And yet with comparatively small populations of even its largest metropolises, the ancient world could leave ussuch riches.

    Moreover, the quality of ancient literature cannot be attributed to things like the beauty of naivete, or “youth of mankind” – writers like Plato seem often too sophisticated, for us as readers today (with often the complex meaning of the texts hidden under layers of games and irony, that we cannot see to the bottom of).

    with architecture. I find that hard to believe.

    From a point of view of scale, technology and monumentalism, the Greeks had been surpassed vastly by the Ancient Egyptians thousands of years before them, and were easily surpassed again by the Romans.

    And Gothic cathedrals, Venetian palaces, Parisian boulevards, New York skyscrapers – even Dubai marina, is on another level, than ruins of relatively small constructions we can visit in Greece.

    Ruins of Ancient Greek buildings, are surprisingly small in terms of scale. But in terms of an architecture of beauty and harmony, the Greek ruins will surely always be the ideal to future generations.

    people were killing each other in huge numbers, per capita, as shown by modern ethnography and

    Hobbes’ view of the violence of the pre-agricultural, pre-state world, seems to be supported by Max Roser.

    But the other parts “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short” . E.g. are claims that hunter-gatherer society, had a longer life expectancy than many recent societies have.

  156. But the greatest artists of the quattrocento cinquecento, are not just imitating the ancient models, but incorporating the influence, and advancing on it.

    Isn’t the most stereotypical and famous example, the art history uses to explain this – Michelangelo’s David?

    The body can be completely created by already in the 5th century BC in Athens. But not quite the veins in the hands or expression in the eyes.

    poets, but they seem distant, in a way that Dante and St. Augustine

    I found the opposite. Medieval writers like Dante, seem far more naive or primitive, than reading some of the ancient writers.

    And some of oversophisticated the Roman writers like Cicero, seem more modern than most of the writers of the 19th and 20th century.

    A sense from reading Roman writers like Cicero – it almost feels like you are reading texts from a science fiction civilization of the future. They can sound “more modern” than the way we think today.

    And what about the world Plato? Their way of thinking and conversation, is more free-flowing, open, and understanding of interconnections, than how anyone talks or writes in the modern world, and also in reads as more advanced than the Roman writers.

    or the renewed vigor of drama and satire

    But I’m not sure that there are writers in the modern world, that could write satire as intelligently as Aristophanes.

    emergence of modern history writing

    I’m not sure anyone since writes what we call now “modern history”, with as much intelligence, as Thucydides.

  157. “consensus that the great 19tn entirely novel”

    I’m not sure even 19th century verse seems like it is aiming at the same level, as the great works of ancient literature, and the 19th century prose and opera (despite claims of e.g. Wagner) was already having a much more modest aim, as continued into the 20th century cinema.

    So Dostoyevsky less profound than Euripides? On balance literary output seems to have been more impressive in Christendom than in the ancient Greece though in Christendom novels eclipsed plays, perhaps due to Christianity’s influence.

    It’s a paradox of the ancient world though. Classical Athens even with all its slaves, had a population around 200,000 people. This is a similar size as a city like Bratz, Zlatoust or Orsk in Russia, or perhaps Des Moines in USA. And yet with comparatively small populations of even its largest metropolises, the ancient world could leave ussuch riches.

    Indeed. And consider how fewer literate people existed in England when it produced Shakespeare, Hobbes, Marlowe, Francis Bacon, than exist today. Total population was 4.1 million 1600, of whom around 15% were literate. So 600,00o people created Shakespeare, Hobbes, Bacon, Marlowe, etc. Not as impressive as the Classical miracle, but still…*

    And Gothic cathedrals, Venetian palaces, Parisian boulevards, New York skyscrapers – even Dubai marina, is on another level, than ruins of relatively small constructions we can visit in Greece.

    Ruins of Ancient Greek buildings, are surprisingly small in terms of scale. But in terms of an architecture of beauty and harmony, the Greek ruins will surely always be the ideal to future generations.

    Can one completely separate beauty and harmony from scale? I would not compare Venetian palaces or Gothic Cathedrals to the Greek temples, sorry.

    Parthenon as it originally looked:

    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/8c/ef/ae/8cefae6d7f5f7410b8536967853bf0b8.jpg

    Peter’s Basilica in Rome:

    https://www.througheternity.com/upload/CONF83/20190524/xbernini-canopy.jpg.pagespeed.ic.HUv8x7CJds.jpg

    Or the cruelly desecrated Hagia Sophia:

    https://miro.medium.com/max/1200/1*9OlEJ9RaUZ_72M2Yz40YKg.jpeg

    Hobbes’ view of the violence of the pre-agricultural, pre-state world, seems to be supported by Max Roser.

    But the other parts “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short” . E.g. are claims that hunter-gatherer society, had a longer life expectancy than many recent societies have.

    “Nasty and brutish” would match. “Short” also, if one factors death by violence into life expectancy. But a healthy hunter/warrior who avoided getting killed would have lived longer than some peasant with a worse diet. But yes, the tribal savages did not have solitary or poor lives.

    *So maybe Leontiev was onto something when he attributed greatness of culture to inequality:

    “Social science was hardly born when, ignoring the experience of centuries and the examples of nature they respect so much, people refused to see that there was no logical relation between the egalitarian-liberal forward movement and the idea of development. One can even say that the egalitarian-liberal process is the very antithesis of the process of development. In the case of the latter, the inner idea holds the social material in its organizing, despotic embrace and sets a limit to its centrifugal and disintegrating trend. Progress, which is hostile to every kind of despotism – the despotism of classes, workshops/factories, monasteries, even wealth, and so on – is nothing but a process of disintegration…”

    “The phenomena of egalitarian-liberal progress are comparable to the phenomena of combustion, decomposition, the melting of ice (water less free, limited by crystallization); they may be likened, for example, to the phenomena of the cholera process, which gradually transforms originally rather diverse people into more uniform corpses (equality), then into almost completely comparable skeletons (equality), and finally into free elements (relatively so, of course), such as nitrogen, hydrogen, oxygen, and so on…”

    “In these processes of decomposition, combustion, melting, the progressive movement of cholera, one perceives the same phenomena.”

    “1.The loss of the peculiarities which till then distinguished the despotically formed whole tree, animal, whole texture, whole crystal, etc.

    2.A greater resemblance in the component parts, a greater inner equality, a greater uniformity of the structure, etc.

    3.The loss of former, strict, morphological outlines,; now everything merges, more freely and uniformly.”

    “Whichever of the states, ancient or modern, we may examine, in all of them we find one and the same thing in common: simplicity and uniformity in the beginning, greater equality and greater freedom (at least de facto, if not legal freedom) than there will be later…glancing at a plant sprouting from the soil, we do not yet know what it will become. There are too few distinct features. Afterwards we note a greater or lesser assertion of power, a more profound or less sharp division of classes, a greater variety of life and diversity of character in the regions.

    “At the same time, the wealth increases, on the one hand, and poverty, on the other; the resources of pleasure become more varied, on the one hand, while, on the other, the variety and refinement (development) of sensations and needs gives birth to greater sufferings, greater grief, greater mistakes and greater undertakings, more poetry and more comedy; the exploits of the educated – of Themistocles, Xenophon, Aristophanes, Alexander – are on grander scale and more appealing than the simple and crude exploits of Odysseus and Achilles. Then a Sophocles appears, an Aristophanes appears, the ranting heroes Corneille appear, the laughter of a Moliere resounds…Shakespeare or Goethe.”

    “In general, these complex, flowering ages are dominated by some kind of aristocracy…The\ eupatridae of Athens, the feudal satraps of Persia, the optimates of Rome, the marquises of France, the lords of England, the Spartans of Laconia, the dvoryane of Russia, the pans of Poland…”

    “At the same time, because of the inner necessity of centralization, there also exists a tendency towards absolute monarchial power, which, either de jure or de facto, always asserts itself in an age of flowering complexity. There appear on the scene remarkable dictators, emperors, kings, or, at least, demagogues and tyrants (in the Hellenic sense) of genius, such as Themistocles, Pericles, and so on.”

    “Between a Pericles and a lawful hereditary ruler and religiously consecrated sovereign, there is a whole ladder of diverse personal rulers, who are needed everywhere in complex and flowering ages in order to unify all the component parts, all the real social forces, full of life and ferment…”

  158. AltanBakshi says

    With all due respect, isn’t it common for people to assume that followers of other faith are believing in a fantasy, and that they have chosen to believe that their fantasy is the most important thing in the world? I’m not claiming that your faith is a fantasy, but isn’t it your choice to believe so, and as you see others, or non-Christians, believing in fantasies, they can also accuse you of the same? And if you claim that your faith is not a choice arising from your free will, wouldn’t that make you a Calvinist?

    People who can’t believe that ‘an Absolute God created an imperfect world’ (the ‘world’ is necessarily imperfect) are the people arrested at the ‘egocentristic’ stage of cognitive development.

    I don’t even know what’s an Absolute God, so I can’t answer if he could or could not create an imperfect world, but in some ways our world is perfect, isn’t it just a matter of perspective? Our world is in my opinion perfectly coherent and interdependent, so fine and delicate, but how I can even say so when I don’t have any point of reference? Well, for many of us the problem is that our reality is not morally perfect, or at least from point of view of a common man, but then how we imperfect beings can claim that our morals are absolute, and that we perfectly know what would be a morally perfect world? People have tried a few times of establishing of morally perfect societies, and what were the results of such endeavours? Ha, ha, ha!

    It’s never nice when people don’t notice the same riches as one does, rarely there’s a more important treasure than one’s faith, but at least Bashi is not hostile towards Christianity as many post-Christian individuals are, that’s something, isn’t it?

  159. AltanBakshi says

    On balance literary output seems to have been more impressive in Christendom than in the ancient Greece though in Christendom novels eclipsed plays, perhaps due to Christianity’s influence

    Well we can’t surely say, for a vast majority of Classical literature has perished…

  160. Bashibuzuk says

    Basically, what you wrote amounts to you considering anyone being “egotistical ” for not believing what you chose to believe. It also amounts to you labeling metaphysical systems other than Trinitarian Christianity of Byzantine persuasion as “fantasies “.

    Yours and similar attitudes are exactly what I have described above as Abrahamic “choseness”. Thanks for proving my point…

  161. Seraphim says

    The ‘Russian Nietzsche’?!
    This is symptomatic for the Western incomprehension of Orthodoxy and Russia. Volumes have been written to ‘explain’ the thinking of Konstantin Leontiev, to force it into such and such Western category (romanticism, aestheticism, nebulous German idealism, paseism, futurism, utopianism, even fascism). All miss the point that Leontiev was a man brought up in the traditional Church, in a society which still revered its Christian ‘values’ (he grew up in provincial Russia and the images of the poetic beauty of his family country estate and of Orthodox rituals remained with him for his whole life) and the outward forms of Orthodoxy and Byzantine tradition, that he deepened his spiritual progress in the very center of Orthodox spirituality (Mount Athos) by the grace of the Mother of God and later continued his spiritual warfare under the guidance of the Russian disciples of ‘athonite’ spirituality, that he was fasting every Wednesday and Friday. He died as monk Kliment, blissfully before seeing the nihilist vulgarity that he loathed submerging Russia under a tsunami of blood (who probably would have killed him as ‘reactionary’).
    His ‘aestheticism’ was that of the ‘Philokalia’ (Love of Beauty, of Good), ‘Dobrotolublye’ in Russian,the collection of texts written between the 4th and 15th centuries by the spiritual masters of the Eastern Orthodox Church mystical hesychast tradition.
    ‘Byzantinism’ was the social expression of Orthodoxy, the hierarchical society of the Church and State ‘Symphonia’. He was a theorist of the ‘Official Nationality’ (Orthodoxy, Autocracy, Nationality) of Nicholas I.
    What possibly could he have to do with Nietzsche, the demented atheistic ‘sophist’? Leontiev was a doctor by training, a diplomat engaged in political life, a keen observer of the life around him, and perhaps above all ‘a natural aristocrat’, a ‘kalokágathos’.

  162. Bashibuzuk says

    I don’t even know what’s an Absolute God, so I can’t answer if he could or could not create an imperfect world, but in some ways our world is perfect, isn’t it just a matter of perspective?

    Well, the Absolute God is described (although quite imperfectly, because how can you describe Absolute while using relative language ?) in some spiritual traditions. The closest an Abrahamic monotheism has ever come to the worship of an Absolute God was in my opinion in the Islamic Mutazilite and Ismaili circles. The Mutazilite and Ismaili doctrines both denied the reality of the attributes of God, only recognizing them as useful human projections.

    The Mutazila have since disappeared, while the Ismaili are but a shadow of what they once were under the Fatimide Caliphate. The loss of influence by these two Islamic schools and the ascent of the more “mainstream ” Sunni schools to officially recognized Islamic Orthodoxy status also coincided with the end of the Golden Age of Islamic civilization.

    Nevertheless, the Ismaili are still walking amongst us and their opinion about God is available to learn from:

    https://ismailignosis.com/2014/03/27/he-who-is-above-all-else-the-strongest-argument-for-the-existence-of-god/

  163. The ‘Russian Nietzsche’?!
    This is symptomatic for the Western incomprehension of Orthodoxy and Russia

    He was compared to Nietzsche by various actual Russians such as Berdyaev and others. You aren’t even Russian, you are a Romanian with some Russian descent. Your main sin is pride, it leads you to teach Russians about Russia.

    All miss the point that Leontiev was a man brought up in the traditional Church, in a society which still revered its Christian ‘values

    He spent much of his life as a hedonistic bisexual, mixing it up with Balkanoids of both sexes while working as a diplomat down there. It was the 19th century Russian equivalent of some Westerner living a sensual life in Brazil, or Thailand, or the Philippines.

    He did redeem himself in the end, cleaned himself up, and finished his life in a monastery. Did he abandon his Greek wife when he did so? I don’t remember.

    His ‘aestheticism’ was that of the ‘Philokalia’ (Love of Beauty, of Good

    He wrote somewhere that a beautiful tree was worth more than the life of some peasant. He also hated the bourgeoisie in a way that became excessive and anti-human.

    He also enjoyed Ukrainian-language writers. He wrote that the Ukrainian writer Marko Vovchok (pen name for Maria Vilinskaya) was superior to Dostoyevsky, whom he hated.

    There is much good in his writings, and he made many correct prophesies, but do not idealize him too much. Doing so won’t make you more Russian than actual Russians 🙂

  164. Dostoyevsky less profound than Euripides

    Of course and what a question (poor Dostoevsky, that he was lost in our disillusioned modernity and technology world, and the ambitions of the French realist novel).

    19th century prose authors, particularly those from the social realism school that emerged from France in the early 19th century – could be very interesting and thoughtful people, as well very talented mimetically; but the insight and spirituality is not touching the ankles of great ancient authors, and the ambition is not comparable, and I don’t think anyone would try to compare them.

    That’s not to say we do not find deep spiritual insights in moments in the 19th century novel (for example in vision of cursed blacksmith in the moment of death of Anna Karenina under the train, or the circular predestination in the death of Julien Sorel).

    In 19th century verse, the writing reached a higher ambition than in prose – so that in Lermontov, Pushkin and Goethe (perhaps Heine?); there can reach insights that remind us of Greek philosophy or biblical poetry. But even the best of the 19th century verse writers, will include a lot of lesser writing mixed with it.

    There was undoubtedly a significant decline in the peaks of 19th century, also relative to what had been in Shakespeare or Dante. That’s not to say, that we should not enjoy the culture of the 19th century.

    Writers in the 19th century knew at the time that they were not exactly Shakepeare or Dante, let alone Greek or biblical writers. But the 19th century has nonetheless produced a fertile season of interesting writings (before the 20th century switched its energies into cinema).

    Christendom novels e

    To turn this into conversation about “Christendom”. Like falling into an argument with American missionaries, rather than literature fans or historians.

    If you need to quieten that part of the brain which desires to claim things to your social identity, then you can use the same mental trick as the Mormons, who said that the pyramids were built by proto-Mormons – and Mormon now enjoy visiting the pyramids.

    You can imagine that writers like Homer or Thucydides, or Solomon and Ezekiel, were part of a “proto-Christendom”, and then you enjoy their poetry without worrying about contests between identities.

    beauty and harmony from scale? I would not compare Venetian palaces or Gothic Cathedrals to the Greek temple

    Architecture often demonstrates power and wealth, through use of vast scale.

    This monumentalism certainly impresses us on an initial level. But does it touch the soul, or leave spiritual insights or memories?

    I think the beauty of the architecture is not dependent on scale.

    As for the architecture of the ancient world – many people are very effected by it.

    I visited ruins where there is even a single column, and yet you receive a strong spiritual impression even from the fragments of their buildings.

    Ancient Greek religious architecture in all its aspects contains ideals harmony and proportion, and sense of balancing of emotions; our later architecture became far more functionalist and arbitrary in most examples.

    Personally, I do not receive such a spiritual impression from modern architecture, even from living near to buildings of the greatest modern architects like Christopher Wren – which are nonetheless beautiful and thoughtful buildings.

  165. The claim makes no sense anyway for extant texts, the moment you have any of the ancient books in your hands.

    I welcome you to sacrifice a day to sit on the sofa in a favourite bookshop.

    For the first 5 hours, you are only reading ancient books – whether they would be Thucydides, Aristophanes and Plato; or Book of Genesis and Upanishads.

    Then for second 5 hours, you can read modern literature, even choosing the greatest writers of the modern history, like Goethe and Shakespeare, or even of the best 19th century prose writers like Flaubert or Schopenhauer.

    You will experience the sense of “stepping down” in terms of ambition and concentration, between the ancient and the modern writers. Modern writers are more narrow minded, unambitious, reverent and disillusioned people, compared to the ancient writers, and the texts are less concentrated in terms of the meaning. There is less “density” of information in the modern text, and less interesting ideas.

    And in the ancient Greek, there is even a more open and sophisticated way of thinking, compared to what is possible today. The Greek writers can seem like they were more ironic and sophisticated, and could hide behind multiple meanings and riddles. Modern writing does not have the multi-layered, riddle aspects of writers like Plato, which require us to re-read, and try to decipher.

    Why this is the situation is not clear though. I don’t have any theory for why our consciousness might possibly have declined in the modern world, at least from the literary evidence.

  166. AltanBakshi says

    Well AP specifically mentioned novels and literary output, and we have a very few novels surviving from the Classical Era. No wonder why, when grain shipments from Africa ended, people were massively dying from starvation, plague, aqueducts were in ruins and there were barbarian warriors everywhere, it must have been an easy choice for early Medieval monks to concentrate on preservation of works of Platon and Aristoteles, and not on every day prose literature, even some works of Aristoteles. and almost everything from Diogenes and Heraclitus is lost.

    And in the ancient Greek, there is even a more open and sophisticated way of thinking, compared to what is possible today. The Greek writers can seem like they were more ironic and sophisticated, and could hide behind multiple meanings and riddles. Modern writing does not have the multi-layered, riddle aspects of writers like Plato, which require us to re-read, and try to decipher.

    Well same is very true with ancient Buddhist literature, there are so many hidden layers, riddles and multiple meanings in the text, that it’s just unbelievable.

  167. AltanBakshi says

    Christian God is a better concept than impersonal Absolute of Platonists and Advaitins. Such beliefs will just lead to subtle forms of nihilism, why should anything matter if all is ultimately God? How you can derive moral teachings from a being that is not a being but an unconditioned principle?

    b. Unconditioned Reality: Any reality that is self-sufficient, i.e. does not depend on anything else for its existence. This is what is called “God”.

    Whoopty doo! Well I’ll call it Quantum physics, Atman, Ishvara, Para-Brahman or Ecuador!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9cQlVww0zKo

  168. Bashibuzuk says

    Why should anything matter if all is ultimately God?

    How you can derive moral teachings from a being that is not a being but an unconditioned principle?

    I don’t know. Perhaps our Monotheistic friends could answer this question. They are the ones believing in an Absolute Creator God.

    For my part, I know one thing: the Buddha said that there is an end to stressful existence. This end is reached when we get to :

    Consciousness without feature, without end, luminous all around:

    Here water, earth, fire, & wind have no footing.

    Here long & short, coarse & fine, fair & foul, name & form are all brought to an end.

    With the cessation of [the activity of] consciousness each is here brought to an end.'”

    When mind is purified and pacified, the release follows. This is all I personally need to know.

    https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/dn/dn.11.0.than.html#gods

  169. Coconuts says

    But the greatest artists of the quattrocento cinquecento, are not just imitating the ancient models, but incorporating the influence, and advancing on it.

    This is sort of what I was saying, I was thinking of the way Petrarch was famous for being able to write Latin poetry and prose that mimicked the ancients very closely, but no one reads that much any more. Whereas something like Tasso’s Jerusalem Liberated drew on Classical models, was very popular and widely read for several centuries until quite recently. But this work was written in vernacular and also contained different religious and cultural (chivalry related) content.

    I found the opposite. Medieval writers like Dante, seem far more naive or primitive, than reading some of the ancient writers.

    These will actually be reasons why the later works are less distant for someone who does not master Classical Latin to a high enough level to really appreciate this period of Latin poetry.

    For example, Classical Latin has a complex and intricate grammar and is a very synthetic language compared to the Western vulgar tongues, we also don’t have a clear idea as to what it sounds like as spoken living language. Since I grew up in still mainly Christian surroundings, only learning some Church Latin and long after the fall of Rome, I found becoming absorbed by the Aeneid or Horace’s Odes tricky (it didn’t happen).

    And some of oversophisticated the Roman writers like Cicero, seem more modern than most of the writers of the 19th and 20th century.

    I tend to think of Cicero as a moralist and political writer as much as a straight part of literature, AFAIK he has never not had readers, all the major Western authors on these topics seem to have read Cicero, Augustine, Aquinas, Machiavelli, Locke, Kant and so on. The issues with the Latin are similar to those Classical poets, so it makes it harder to appreciate fully the literary qualities, except it can be seen to be a very elevated and august style, maybe this makes it seem like it was written by aliens.

    The content of something like the Offices will probably always in some way be relevant. It is unusual at the moment that they are no longer being read to the same extent as they used to be, I have been wondering if they might make a kind of come back in the near future as the latest avant-garde thing.

    Plato and his later peer, The Philosopher, are a whole subject on their own.

    I’m not sure anyone since writes what we call now “modern history”, with as much intelligence, as Thucydides.

    Modern ‘scientific’ history is in various respects a different genre to what Thucydides was doing, it is one of those things that didn’t exist in the Classical period

  170. And in the ancient Greek, there is even a more open and sophisticated way of thinking, compared to what is possible today. The Greek writers can seem like they were more ironic and sophisticated, and could hide behind multiple meanings and riddles. Modern writing does not have the multi-layered, riddle aspects of writers like Plato, which require us to re-read, and try to decipher.

    From what I understand, Classical Greek lent itself to multi-layered meanings.

    But this seems to get to the heart of your conclusions: you are impressed with riddles, puzzles, and wit. Perhaps that is why you also think that various French writers are superior to Dostoyevsky (whose writing style was clumsy). Do you confuse such tricks, with wisdom? Not that the Ancients were not wise, but strip away the clever and playful games and then compare.

    Btw, when you were young – did you prefer Lord of the Rings, or the Iliad and Odyssey, or the Norse sagas? I enjoyed them all, but the early 20th century work the most.

  171. AltanBakshi says

    I don’t know. Perhaps our Monotheistic friends could answer this question. They are the ones believing in an Absolute Creator God.

    My criticism was directed against Platonists, Advaitins and others who believe in an impersonal God.

    Christianity on the other hand is a rational and reasonable faith, well suited for human needs.

  172. Relevant: Swift’s Battle of the Books

    And it seems I was neither an ill prophet nor an ill counsellor; for it was nothing else but the neglect of this caution which gave occasion to the terrible fight that happened on Friday last between the Ancient and Modern Books in the King’s library. Now, because the talk of this battle is so fresh in everybody’s mouth, and the expectation of the town so great to be informed in the particulars, I, being possessed of all qualifications requisite in an historian, and retained by neither party, have resolved to comply with the urgent importunity of my friends, by writing down a full impartial account thereof.

  173. Bashibuzuk says

    Christianity on the other hand is a rational and reasonable faith, well suited for human needs.

    Well, this probably speaks more about your own mindset and psychological inclinations than it does about the relative rationality or lack thereof of any of these belief systems.

    Anyway, given that neither of the two of us is a Monotheist, I believe it is not fitting for us to discuss the differences between the Theistic metaphysical doctrines.

    Let’s leave this to our Monotheistic friends, they’re good at trying to sort out their differences. They have been doing this for the last 2000 years, millions of people suffered a cruel death while they tried to prove to one another that their understanding of the Divine is more accurate than that of their neighbors.

  174. Dostoyevsky less profound than Euripides

    Of course and what a question

    So you think Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex surpassed Brothers Karamazov?

    Christendom novels e

    To turn this into conversation about “Christendom”. Like falling into an argument with American missionaries, rather than literature fans or historians.

    My thesis at the beginning was the Christendom at its height (c.1500-c.1900, it started a little earlier in Italy) was the pinnacle of human civilization.

    I visited ruins where there is even a single column, and yet you receive a strong spiritual impression even from the fragments of their buildings.

    So it’s a purely emotional connection for you, that clouds your impression. It is why for you, the greatest 19th century novelists don’t touch the ankles of Euripides.

    Personally, I do not receive such a spiritual impression from modern architecture

    It depends on how modern. Something went wrong in the early to mid 20th century.

  175. various French writers are superior to Dostoyevsky

    I was not saying that Flaubert is superior to Dostoevsky. Although I was personally more impressed by Flaubert – I would not want to impose my subjective impressions too much. (Just decide for yourself)

    It would be art fans discussing whether they prefer Cezanne or Monet. Some art fans prefer Cezanne, others like Monet. They are both interesting artists, generally considered at the top level of their profession

    My point was that, of course, the innovations and trends of the 19th century novel were centred in France, and Russian writers are part of this weather system that was blowing from Paris. Moreover, that in France, there were more of these great novelists, than in Russian Empire. That is in the Russian Empire produced 2-3 novelists that had a similar professional acclaim to the great writers in Paris, and 2 equally rated writers of short stories. France was the centre of the storm, as it were, of the 19th century literature – the winds of which have blown across the Russian Empire, and even over the Atlantic oceans to America; Henry James was at the level of any novelist born in Europe, but the number of the authors in America was not like in the centre of the storm.

    Ancients were not wise, but strip away the clever and playful games and then compare.

    For example, Plato might not tell you what the correct theory is, but gives you ten different theories in five different characters, as well as a couple of myths, and then tells you that they are all a waste of time. Meanwhile there can be hidden deeper teaching and messages each time you re-read the text.

    It’s not just a superfluous game, but it’s trying to teach the reader about the many-sided reality, and complexity of the topic, and the interconnectedness where accepting a theory in one topic, effects our views on another topic. The uses of metaphor and myth also allows the discussion to be viewed in an almost visual way.

    So we think of for example, Plato’s dialogue “Theaetetus”.

    It begins as a frame story, about remembrance of a short light, joking dialogue of Socrates, talking about some pedantic questions about knowledge – but then outlines multiple different future theories that would be in modern epistemology, problems of measurement, questions reliability of memory, and in the centre of text: about how man can be virtuous, the problem of evil, and its relation to social norms and the establishment of rules in language, whether beauty is related to justice, etc.

    And then they say their discussion was useless, and has just produced bad wind. And Socrates proceeds to his trial.

    • There is fertile, complex, riddled and puzzling discussion. It is even designed to deter the people who will read it the first time. But will start to reward the second, third or fourth time reading, where the deeper meanings will become visible.

    These are texts with multiple layers of meaning, and where literary setting itself (e.g. of perfectly remembered frame story, before a trial), will contain even additional layers of comment on the theories it contains.

    when you were young – did you prefer

    I avoided “extracurricular reading” as much as a possible, and was more interested in sports, music and video games, etc.

    Lol I think it was probably lucky as I avoided any “Harry Potter” or “Lord of Rings”. When I started to enjoy reading literary things, I was pretty old (16-17), and it was because of 19th century writers. So my first love in literature (and kind of “homebase”) – 19th century literature.

  176. , all the major Western authors on these topics seem to have read Cicero

    And Cicero is one of the main influences on the concept of “general essay”, rediscovered in the renaissance via Montaigne.

    With Cicero, you’re also forced to experience, how sophisticated was the literary world by his time. Because he writes in some ways like he was publishing in 21st scientific journal; beginning often with a review of past literature.

    He approaches a topic (whether it will be about old age, or the meaning of fate, or grammatical fashions), as a writer in a peer-reviewed journal today, who has to comment on the previous literature and investigations.

    I find surreal especially, is when he reviews about how the virtues and vices of modern contemporary writers, compared to those of lost centuries of the past.

    different genre to what Thucydides was doing

    You’ll find many modern historical projects in Thucydides. Perhaps not well developed, or with a consensus of scholars he can debate; but the seeds of different modern historical schools can be found in the text.

    So, for example, I noticed , is that “Annales school” approach of analyzing ordinary customs fashions, and farming methods, is contained with Thucydides’s text, as analysis of trading routes, etc.

  177. For example, Plato might not tell you what the correct theory is, but gives you ten different theories in five different characters, as well as a couple of myths, and then tells you that they are all a waste of time. Meanwhile there can be hidden deeper teaching and messages each time you re-read the text.

    It’s not just a superfluous game, but it’s trying to teach the reader about the many-sided reality, and complexity of the topic, and the interconnectedness where accepting a theory in one topic, effects our views on another topic. The uses of metaphor and myth also allows the discussion to be viewed in an almost visual way.

    Thank you for this. Okay, you’ve convinced me to reread some of Plato’s dialogues. I confess when I had read them as a curious student I found them to be uninteresting. Obviously I was not clever enough to appreciate them fully.

    Lol I think it was probably lucky as I avoided any “Harry Potter” or “Lord of Rings”.

    I don’t think I would equalize those two.

    When I started to enjoy reading literary things, I was pretty old (16-17), and it was because of 19th century writers. So my first love in literature (and kind of “homebase”) – 19th century literature.

    The first book I read on my own was Robinson Crusoe, a gift for my first communion (age 10-11?). Later I was reading Jules Verne and especially Jack London. I discovered Lord of the Rings later still, around age 14-15. It made a very strong impression. Then there was a pause (music, girls, bonfires, etc.) though I started reading Russian authors towards the end of high school (age 17-18). Then there was exploration in university, when the massive library was at my finger tips (this was before the internet, Amazon, etc. so a new world opened up).

    No one I knew in high school read for pleasure, other than stuff like Steven King which probably shouldn’t count. Harry Potter did not yet exist in the 1980s.

  178. emotional connection

    I’m lucky to live close to some of the most beautiful architecture of modern Europe, and these can really create romantic imagining.

    But I would say that ruins of Greek architecture is our civilization’s “touchstone” of beauty and harmony in architecture, and that will be so for the future generations.

    One of the differences is that the ancient Greek buildings had nothing arbitrary, unlike architecture which we see in medieval or modern world. The idea contained in one part of the building, is representative of the whole, and that it contains a total vision of the world

    This is why you can find a small portion of a ruin, and reconstruct in the mind how the entire building would be.

    So that for example, in the Sanctuary to Asclepius at Epidaurus – from a single corner of a building, a conception can be reconstructed in your mind, which expresses an ideal of the Greek civilization, and its approach to life.

    https://i.imgur.com/p5FaZKy.png

    It depends on how modern. Something went wrong in the early to mid 20th century.

    I mean architecture after the historical Roman Empire. Medieval and modern architecture.

    That’s not to say that there are not incredibly great Gothic buildings, Venetian palaces, et al. Even some of the New York skyscrapers are masterpieces of art.

    But the modern world’s buildings doesn’t have the level of integration as in the Greek temples, where it can be that no part of the building seems arbitrary, and so directly seems to transmit to us their ideals.

  179. Seraphim says

    Where do you get it that I have ‘some Russian descent’? If anything I am a ‘Byzantine’ in a more direct line and closer to the Byzantine (Athonite) source than Leontiev (Paisy Velichkovski, the spiritual father of Optina lived and died in Moldavia where he translated the Philokalia for Russians). A ‘Balkanoid’ that he might have hated, but wanted to live among them.
    If there was ever any ‘sympathy’ of Romanians for Russia it was only because of Orthodoxy, because Romanians shared in the view that Russia is the heir of Byzance and the protector of Christians, because Catherine the Great wanted to recreate the Kingdom of Dacia as part of the ‘Greek Project’ and because they acknowledged (at times) that Russia helped a great deal in the creation of modern Romania. Without the Orthodoxy Russians received from Byzance, they are ‘ethnographic material’ (as Dostoevski put it) and not necessarily of the best quality.
    If I appreciate Leontiev’s views it is precisely because he had a clearer, more rational view of Russia’s history and ‘mission’ in the geopolitical environment of his time and was able to raise above the anarchistic ‘narodnichestvo’ and utopian apocalyptic and myth-history currents (supposed to reflect the ‘profound Russian soul’) that so often haunted Russia.
    And I can’t see any rationale in comparing him with Nietzsche, it is counterfactual, whatever a Marxoid-“Orthodox” like Berdyaev might say (he actually called Leontiev a ‘satanist, dressing himself up with Christian features’). His hatred of the Church colored his presentation of Leontiev.

  180. convinced me to reread some of Plato’s dialogues… found them to be uninteresting.

    I was helped, when someone told me that Plato writes the most important messages in the middle of the text, and adds the “false paths” at the beginning and end of the text.

    So the teaching of the dialogue radiates from the centre – which is really weird for modern readers.

    In “Republic”, there are interesting teaching in the beginning of the book, but not said by Socrates (more by Thrasymachus).

    However, the most famous teaching in the dialogue like “The Cave” – hidden in the middle of the book.

    (age 10-11?). Later I was reading Jules Verne and

    I feel a bit jealous, because I remember looking at the covers and exciting names of books of Jules Verne when I was a child. But I never had attention, or too many distractions, to read such a level of books when I was that age. And in terms of distractions, it must be even more difficult for young people today to start reading.

  181. Coconuts says

    Why this is the situation is not clear though. I don’t have any theory for why our consciousness might possibly have declined in the modern world, at least from the literary evidence.

    Among the reasons, I was thinking about the difference between Plato and the other giant figure of Classical philosophy, Aristotle. Aristotle may seem more autistic in his spartan, methodical presentation of his material (there is this theory that many of his works were more like notes for lectures) and his preoccupation with systematic approaches to questions.

  182. Coconuts says

    There is an interesting book on this topic:

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Darwins-Cathedral-Evolution-Religion-Society/dp/0226901343/ref=sr_1_2?dchild=1&keywords=Darwin%27s+Cathedral&qid=1621419331&sr=8-2

    Another one, but more spicy and provocative:

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Islam-Evolutionary-Perspective-Edward-Dutton/dp/1593680651/ref=sr_1_8?dchild=1&keywords=Edward+Dutton&qid=1621419520&sr=8-8

    The whole explosion of the BLM thing last year made these approaches seem more interesting and relevant again.

  183. Ukrainian nationalists do not have a track record of winning battles against their neighbours. Only victory I can think of is over Polish civilians in Volhynia, peaceful protesters in Odessa, and the police force of Mariupol.

    If they become a threat, Russia will roll in and clear the shit out.

  184. Mr. Hack says

    I’m no expert myself regarding the cannon of Christian literature, however, have found the Gospel according to John to be the most satisfying and edifying of all the gospels, from the very first time that I read it as a teenager, and before I was able to study it in a bit more detail as an adult. It actually totally blew me totally away, and I consider it to be the greatest piece of Christian literature ever written.

  185. Ukrainian nationalists do not have a track record of winning battles against their neighbours

    Wars no, because they have been fighting much-larger opponents. Obviously Russia would win if it invaded Ukraine.

    Battles, yes. There was considerable give and take in the Polish-Ukrainian War:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polish%E2%80%93Ukrainian_War

    Both sides were at a stalemate until the Poles doubled their forces and Ukrainians ran out of military supplies.

    Russian invasion would be bloody for Russia, also.

  186. I feel a bit jealous, because I remember looking at the covers and exciting names of books of Jules Verne when I was a child

    At that age, I didn’t think that Journey to the Center of the Earth was fiction!

    But I never had attention, or too many distractions, to read such a level of books when I was that age

    Your distractions were probably much more impressive than mine. I am ashamed to admit that I wasted hours of my childhood on an Atari 2600:

    https://youtube.com/watch?v=2LxPEdUZOkE&feature=share

  187. Where do you get it that I have ‘some Russian descent

    I vaguely recall you saying that one of your ancestors was a Romanian soldier in Russia who married a local there and brought her back, or something. But if I am wrong, then sorry.

    If anything I am a ‘Byzantine’ in a more direct line and closer to the Byzantine (Athonite) source than Leontiev

    A Romanian once insisted to me that Justinian was actually a Romanian and that for much of its history Byzantium was in reality a proto-Romanian Empire. Is this view widespread in Romania?

    And I can’t see any rationale in comparing him with Nietzsche, it is counterfactual, whatever a Marxoid-“Orthodox” like Berdyaev might say (he actually called Leontiev a ‘satanist, dressing himself up with Christian features

    I wouldn’t go so far as Berdyaev but for much of his life Leontiev lived as a shameless hedonist, feasting on Balkanoid men and women. And did Leontiev not write that the life of a peasant was worth less than that of a nice and beautiful tree? There is something Nietzschean in his contempt for average people and his justification for his own actions, beyond normal morality. And if the Nietzschean superman was actually an anti-Christ as Solovyov concluded, certain implications become evident.

    There is much true in what Leontiev wrote but I would not consider such a man an exemplar of Orthodox Christianity. Does he appeal to your pride?

  188. Bashibuzuk says

    Well, if we see all Religions as byproducts of human mind interacting with the Real (capitalized to include something greater than the material day to day experience), and if we see the mental faculties of human populations as at the same time tied to their genetics and also evolving, then obviously Religion (and culture) are something of a byproduct of evolution.

    Also, if we see all Religions (and many cultural tropes) as memetic packages, riding our information processing capabilities, then we should not be surprised to find that some Religions tend to increase the survival and the spread of their host populations, while also somewhat limiting their technological abilities and dumbing them down.

    It’s basically the typical situation of a symbiont / parasite interacting with its host.

    BTW, this book had a deep effect on me when I was in my late teens :

    https://books.google.com/books/about/The_Mind_Parasites.html?hl=fr&id=9PgT3y9r2QEC

    It was the time of my early forays into Zen, and after reading this book, the advice by Linji Yixuan (Rinzai) to “kill the Buddha” if one ” sees the Buddha” has taken a bit of a different meaning. When human mind is purged of all of its “mind parasites ” it is probably quite different from what we are used to experience.

    Perhaps that is why St Paul said something about: “Everything is permissible for me–but I will not be mastered by anything”. And perhaps then we understand better what Jesus was aiming at when he replied to the Pharisees: “Is it not written in your law, I said, You are gods? “.

    But as I wrote to Altan, I cannot pretend understanding the message of Abrahamic Creeds better than their devotees. Perhaps these are things that Christians should ponder and clarify for themselves and others.

    Thing is, we don’t know what the nature of our own mind truly is and I can only hope to clarify the nature of my own mind before I leave this whole thing behind me. Time is running out for me to see things clearly. Distractions are many, hours of clarity are few.

    Buddha has said before he departed this world: “Work diligently, life and death are painful. Do not suffer them in vain “…

    He was of course right.

  189. As late as 1925 Chesterton still comes out on the pre-Classical side:

    A poet who may have been a beggar and a ballad-monger, who may have been unable to read and write, and was described by tradition as a blind, composed a poem about the Greeks going to war with this town to recover the most beautiful woman in the world. That the most beautiful woman in the world lived in that one little town sounds like a legend; that the most beautiful poem in the world was written by somebody who knew of nothing larger than such little towns is a historical fact. It is said that the poem came at the end of the period; that the primitive culture brought it forth in its decay; in which case one would like to have seen that culture in its prime. But anyhow it is true that this, which is our first poem, might very well be our last poem too. It might well be the last word as well as the first word spoken by man about his mortal lot, as seen by merely mortal vision. If the world becomes pagan and perishes, the last man left alive would do well to quote the Iliad and die.

    So I suppose the pre-Classicals are still in the running versus the Classical side.

    That list of plays is very funny; first come the ancient Greeks, then the English, then two Spaniards, then a few Frenchmen, then everybody else (including more Spain and more France and more UK, but no more Greece).

    Also FWIW, while I did see an incredible Oedipus Rex in Moscow (Vakhtangov), I would say that this surpassed Chekhov (Fomenko)

    I have only read these, and only in English, so I cannot make any kind of judgment here.

    By the way, if you haven’t read The Everlasting Man, from which I drew the paragraph above, it develops a discussion on somewhat similar terms to your argument here, if not quite in the same way.

  190. “Also FWIW, while I did see an incredible Oedipus Rex in Moscow (Vakhtangov), I would say that this surpassed Chekhov (Fomenko)”

    I have only read these, and only in English, so I cannot make any kind of judgment here.

    I completely botched my post – Oedipus Rex did not surpass the plays by Chekhov or Williams I saw. But it was quite good.

    I think seeing a play allows a truer judgement of its worth then just reading the dialogues on pages, though this introduces huge wildcard variables that have nothing to do with the original author. Moscow probably provides the best quality to price ratio in the world, for live theater. Tennessee Williams’ Sweet Bird of Youth at Sovremmenik easily surpassed his Cat on a Hot Tin Roof with Scarlett Johansson that I saw on Broadway.

  191. Seraphim says

    It would be a manifestation of pride to assume that people pays too much attention to what I said or say. I told a story of a Romanian soldier who married a Russian, but it was not about me. You are forgiven.
    Not just Justinian was ‘Romanian’, but Constantin in the first place.
    Leontiev might have been a ‘shameless’ hedonist, but he repented. Nietzsche was a frustrated hedonist who vented his frustrations on what he thought was the obstacle to the fulfillment of his desires and ambitions: Christianity itself. Leontiev reverted to the Church (it was not uncommon in Orthodoxy that nobles, princes and Kings, commoners, retreat to monastery to attune for their past sins) and his literary activity is part of his ‘metania’. That infuriated the westernized liberal and revolutionary ‘lovers and liberators of Mankind’ but Church hater ‘intelligentsia’ alike. But his repentance is what made him an ‘exemplar of Orthodox Christianity’. This is a reason why Solzhenitsyn is reviled today, he asked for repentance. This is what ‘Orthodox Christianity’ is about, not the Kingdom of God on this Earth.

  192. Coconuts says

    Also, if we see all Religions (and many cultural tropes) as memetic packages, riding our information processing capabilities, then we should not be surprised to find that some Religions tend to increase the survival and the spread of their host populations, while also somewhat limiting their technological abilities and dumbing them down.

    I remember first encountering the idea of memes in about 2004-5, via the book by Susan Blackmore, The Meme Machine. Reading this was a surprise because as I mentioned in a previous thread, when I was in my teens and as an undergraduate the main thinkers on ‘the big questions’ were all French and German in the continental tradition of philosophy (Foucault and Derrida, Marx, existentialists etc.). Blackmore was a friend and associate of Richard Dawkins, in that book she was using his meme idea to argue for a form of eliminative materialism and reductionism, which interestingly seems to be the opposite conclusion to the idea in the Mind Parasites novel. This was my first encounter with what later I would come to recognise as Scientific Naturalism, to me it seems to be one of the big manifestations of Anglo-German analytical philosophy.

    A couple of years later Dawkins brought this worldview into the mainstream of British society in a much more popular and polemical form in his book The God Delusion, a lot of the public discussion of religion and the spiritual questions for the next decade was shaped by the New Atheist movement, its connection to the Natural Sciences, and what were basically variants of Naturalism/Physicalism.

    Something I have been thinking about lately is if another way of seeing one aspect of the recent Woke explosion in the Anglosphere is as a counter to the position that the analytical and scientific worldview was gaining in wider culture, because in a weird, circuitous way this tradition was rehabilitating parts of traditional metaphysics and pre-Kantian philosophy. If it had continued I think this would have started to influence politics and culture, probably in ways against the previous the previously dominant 20th century trends.

  193. Coconuts says

    Thing is, we don’t know what the nature of our own mind truly is and I can only hope to clarify the nature of my own mind before I leave this whole thing behind me. Time is running out for me to see things clearly. Distractions are many, hours of clarity are few.

    I’m very close to my fourth decade myself, reading the discussions on literature Dmitri and AP have been starting has got me re-reading things I haven’t looked at in around a decade and a half. I’m realising that now I would probably appreciate more in these works, but have less time and available energy to read them.

    On the subject of modern literature that in some way resembles (and doesn’t) the classic works of antiquity, there is a Portuguese poet from the first half of the 20th century called Fernando Pessoa, who believed that while he was a single human individual a number of different poets and writers (each with their own biography, appearance and so on) lived in his mind. These form a small body of literature on their own.

    One of them was the Fernando Pessoa, initially a typical 19th century English language poet in the style of Tennyson, later a writer of large numbers of Portuguese popular ditties and a spiritual nationalist epic, which was his main published work during his lifetime (the majority of his oeuvre was only discovered after his death). This epic on the history of Portugal, made of a series of interlinked shorter poems, contains all kinds of allusions to European and other spiritual traditions, for example this one:

    The Quinas (these are the symbols of the five wounds of Christ that appear on the Portuguese coat of arms):

    The Gods sell when they give
    Misfortune is the price of glory
    Alas for the happy, because they are
    Only what passes away!

    Suffice to who it suffices what suffices to him
    The sufficient to suffice
    Life is brief, the soul is vast:
    To have is to tarry.

    It was with misfortune and baseness
    That God defined Christ
    In that way he made him opposed to Nature
    And anointed him a son.

  194. Mr. Hack says

    It depends on how modern. Something went wrong in the early to mid 20th century.

    What went wrong was the occurrence of two world wars that unleashed the absolute terrors of the mechanized destruction of humanity. This of course left a corrosive edge to much of art that followed and unfortunately the largescale abandonment of Christianity throughout much of Europe.

    I’ve been following this very interesting thread laced with so much heavy commentary and haven’t been able to find much time to comment myself as I find myself on a long overdue vacation visiting my family in Minnesota. My family’s home is nestled among large oak trees including 160 feet of shoreline on a large lake in a small town surrounded by mostly farmland (they’ve moved from a similar home that I wrote about 2 years ago). The views from the home framed by picture windows, and the three levels of verandas (decks) are truly breathtaking and offer a feast for the eyes and a sanctuary for the soul. I’ve seen about 30 pelicans on the lake so far, and my sister has told me about sighting eagles several times including one sighting of three eagles at one time, including one very large one that was hovering over the lake with a huge wingspan. Needless to say, the cat mostly stays inside the home under watchful eyes.

    So by now, no doubt, you’re wondering about where I’m headed with this long entry and how I’ll be able to tie it all in with the quotation of yours above? Well, interestingly enough I experienced a dream this morning with you being the main character within this dream. I just got back yesterday from a week of visiting the Twin Cities that included a trip to two to the better art museums found within Minneapolis: the Minneapolis Institute of Arts and the much newer and smaller, Russian Art Museum. The larger world class Institute has been augmenting its collection by leaps and bounds and truly houses a great collection. The Museum of Russian Art is currently displaying works by both Geli Korzhev and Ekatarina Khromev. Their permanent collection is made up of about 50% works painted by Ukrainian artists, that I now see you too might consider as Russian artists (“our people”) too. 🙂

    Anyway, back to my dream. I found myself following you into a large old house, probably located somewhere in South Minneapolis. I can’t remember what you were talking about, in a broken sort of Russian accented English style, but as soon as we entered this building you pulled out a pocket knife and began cutting open a small package that included a framed depiction of a face. It was a striking work that even included some fluorescent brush strokes. As I was admiring this piece, somebody came up behind us and informed you that he had found a piece that he was interested in purchasing, as I looked around and found that the large room was filled with many pieces of art, all on sale. There were even some very large theatrical background pieces that looked like something that David Hockney might have produced. I finally turned to you and asked who was the artist responsible for this large and interesting collection, now all for sale? You told me that it was works created by your father over the years. I was awakened by the sound of chirping birds that could be heard from a crack in my window.:-)

    P.S. I finally have found some time to read “The Master and Margarita” I’m about a third of the way through. Enchanting.

  195. Something I have been thinking about lately is if another way of seeing one aspect of the recent Woke explosion in the Anglosphere is as a counter to the position that the analytical and scientific worldview was gaining in wider culture, because in a weird, circuitous way this tradition was rehabilitating parts of traditional metaphysics and pre-Kantian philosophy. If it had continued I think this would have started to influence politics and culture, probably in ways against the previous the previously dominant 20th century trends.

    Could you elaborate on this, please?

  196. Bashibuzuk says

    I’m realising that now I would probably appreciate more in these works, but have less time and available energy to read them.

    I have re-read some favorite books, some of them many times. With these, I sometimes noticed novel layers of meaning appearing as I age. It only happens with the best literature, all the other books age rather poorly.

    It was with misfortune and baseness
    That God defined Christ
    In that way he made him opposed to Nature
    And anointed him a son.

    Poetry, especially spiritual or religious one is very subjective…

    Speaking of which, are you familiar with:

    https://www.hermitary.com/articles/stonehouse.html

    ??

  197. Bashibuzuk says

    Gospel of John is also my favorite among the synoptic Gospels. I also like re-reading the (apocryphal) Gospel of Thomas.

    http://gnosis.org/naghamm/gosthom-meyer.html

  198. Mr. Hack says

    Like I wrote above, there are so many great comments at this thread, not the least being your own. I wish that I would spend more time researching so many of your thoughts for which you often leave explanatory links. Perhaps even more, I appreciate the honesty and humbleness that you display with your comments, letting it “all hang out”, bearing your soul to everybody that reads this blog. One of the Christian participants here, who is so very dogmatic in his responses, would do well to try and incorporate some love into his responses, even to those with whom he disagrees, like you so often seem to do. Keep it up, you have many fans here. This particular comment of yours surely encapsulates what I mean about your writing style.

  199. Seraphim says

    Don’t you realize that the Gospel of John simply ‘annuls’ the ‘Gospel’ of Thomas (and all apocryphal writings)? That the ‘disciple whom Jesus loved’, the witness of the Epiphany and of the Glory of God on Mount Tabor, made by Him ‘son of the Mother of God’ and singled out with a special ‘Revelation’, wrote his testimony to assert the ‘right doctrine’ against those who ‘will not tolerate sound doctrine, but with itching ears they will gather around themselves teachers to suit their own desires. So they will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths”?
    ”This is the disciple which testifieth of these things, and wrote these things: and we know that his testimony is true. And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written” (John 21:24-25).

    You may tell the Hacks and APs (and understand for yourself) that I have no ‘luv’ (and I wouldn’t have any) for anyone who denies, out of principle (atheistic, buddhistic, ‘Corded Ware YR1A haplogroup’ or just ‘anti-Moskaly’), the truth of the very words of Saint John: ”There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. 8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. 9 That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. 11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not. 12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: 13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. 14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father) full of grace and truth. 15 John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me. 16 And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace. 17 For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. 18 No man hath seen God at any time, the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him. 19 And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou? (John 1:6-19).
    The same who said: ”Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. 2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: 3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world” (1 John 4:1-3) and ”For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist. 8 Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward. 9 Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son” (2 John 1:7-9).
    So, beware that ”as you make your bed, so you must lie on it”. If you prefer to be ‘reincarnated’ in a rat, so be it. It’s your problem (and the Hacks and APs also). We make our choice, don’t we?

  200. Bashibuzuk says

    I respect fully your dedication to Orthodox Faith. Your Духовная Брань is certainly worthy of much consideration.

    But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God

    This is certainly an important aspect of the teachings of Jesus; that if we follow in his footsteps and do exactly as He did, then we will become what He is.

    We become what we do. We evolve according to our acts. Acts in Sanscrit are called Karman (plural). That is where Karma comes from.

    And acts are only valuable if they are done mindfully, with the right mindset. If someone does something that appears beautiful, but with the wrong mindset of greed, anger, pride and so forth, then even these apparently beautiful acts will not bring this someone closer to Truth.

    As our mindset wobbles and changes, we are “reincarnated ” from one moment to another. Never living any moment fully, always carried away by the incessant flow of emotions, thoughts and impulsions. Our impermanent self flickers as a candle in the wind instead of burning like a pure flame, giving forth a pure light. The light of mindfulness.

    We can only act mindfully when we know our mind well enough. When we “behold our mind ” then we are no longer led astray by “every Spirit”. But as long as we cling to “external phenomena”, our passions and prejudices, while we neglect what is our very nature, then how can we be saved, enlightened, liberated ?

    We cannot cure our ignorance if we don’t even know our own mind, can we?

    How can we see what is far and high if we don’t even see what is closer to us than anything else, that is our mind itself?

    I don’t think Jesus would have disagreed with the questions I have written above. And He would have certainly provided the fitting answers to these questions. But He is not here right now to ask. As was written in the Gospels, a time has come when we might seek for Him, but we cannot find Him in this World. We now need to learn to walk alone. Stumble, fall and walk again. Like a toddler making his early steps.

    The first step is to know our mind. To see it clearly and be aware of it as we act. To behold it. If you don’t behold your own mind, then it’s past time you take care of it. Life and death are painful, we should not suffer them in vain.

    We might write comments until the sun burns out, but if we don’t even know what our very own mind is, then what is the value of all our supposedly erudite and well articulated comments ?

    They are just idle chatting, all noise and so little signal. Perhaps just looking mindfully at a tree outside my house would be better for my Karma than writing so much words which can be misconstrued and lead others to negative thoughts and emotions.

    Often silence is best.

    Be well.

    Мир Вам и Бог в помощь!

  201. I respect fully your dedication to Orthodox Faith. Your Духовная Брань is certainly worthy of much consideration.

    I would take his faith with a bit of a grain of salt. It has led him to conclude that Church hierarchs who built their careers as snitches and collaborators of the atheist Soviet system (creatures like Kirill, Sawka, Alexei) are the ultimate and highest Christian authorities. So much so, that when Churches that have been uncorrupted by Soviet filth cross those hierarchs, in “Seraphim’s” world those uncorrupted Churches or hierarchs have fallen.

    He has also proclaimed that K. Leontiev is nothing like Nietzsche and stated that he reflects true and proper Christian thought. Here is an example of this totally not-Nietzsche’s writing: “a simple one century old majestic tree is worth more than two dozen faceless people; I shall not cut it down to purchase medicine for peasants suffering from cholera.”

    Contrast this with the charming autobiographical story “Peasant Marey” by Dostoyevsky (whom Leontiev despised).

    Leontiev’s disregard for egalitarianism and his unabashed focus on aesthetics are refreshing compared to the levelling nonsense everywhere, but even such sentiments have their limits. And, actually, they contrast with “Seraphim’s” loyalty to the servants of the incredibly ugly Soviet system. Perhaps Balkanoid reverence for cruelty is the unifying factor in his thought.

  202. Seraphim says

    ‘But He is not here right now to ask. As was written in the Gospels, a time has come when we might seek for Him, but we cannot find Him in this World’.

    Isn’t He? Is that was written in the Gospels? What Gospels? Not the ones read in the Church.
    ”Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, THERE AM I IN THE MIDST OF THEM” (Matthew 18:19-20).
    ”And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying: All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I AM WITH YOU ALWAYS, EVEN ONTO THE END OF THIS WORLD. Amen” (Mathew 28:18-20).
    ” Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. 15 Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. 16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you… But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: 27 And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning” (John 15: 14-16; 26-27).
    ”Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed. 30 And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: 31 But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name” (John 20:29-31).
    We are not alone.

  203. Mr. Hack says

    “Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness. Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling” (1 John 2:9–10).
    – 1 John 2:9–11

    1 John 4:20
    If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen.

    Brother Seraphim – isn’t it time that you fully emerge from your dark cave and come more into the light? 🙂

  204. Bashibuzuk says

    We are not alone

    So you have Jesus by your side in the flesh in this very moment ?

  205. Bashibuzuk says

    “a simple one century old majestic tree is worth more than two dozen faceless people; I shall not cut it down to purchase medicine for peasants suffering from cholera.”

    Sounds a bit like some 1%-ers today that like nature a lot, but poor people not that much.

  206. I’m not sure it’s fair to call Nietzsche “elitist”; at least he was not elitist in the most idiotic, superficial way, of judging people according to arbitrary things like social class, that we are randomly assigned at birth.

    Logically, Nietzsche’s theory needed to emphasize a concept of rank order, however, in the context of his rebellion against Schopenhauer’s pessimism.

    If Schopenhauer said that all life is evil, and that man can only be good to the extent that he realizes the evil of existence, and turns against existence in Buddhist/Christian quietude.

    Nietzsche’s rebellion was to accept that “yes life is awful and terrible, but yet we see moments of tragic beauty – and this tragic beauty has been occasionally be affirmed by man, such as we saw in the mountain peaks of human history, among the Ancient Greeks, Old Testament prophets, or quattrocento and cinquecento Florence”.

    But for Nietzsche to affirm life despite its terror and pain, entails logically that whole epochs of history have sacrificed themselves as preparatory epochs for our rare moments when we could see the mountain topics, and transfigure the horror of our existence in beauty.

    To affirm that life is beautiful despite its cruelty, logically requires that he accepts a rank order, where epochs of man can be justified as a sacrifice to those rare mountain peaks.

    • Rank order is a logically necessary part of Nietzsche’s theory of the affirmation of life, and it resulted in his infamous support for the “Law of Manu”.

    But this doesn’t mean that Nietzsche was some kind of idiot who wants to judge people by their superficial social status (which is the concept of elitism in a normal sense).

    Without the acceptance of rank order in terms of historical epochs, and peoples’ ability to appreciate them, then Nietzsche’s theory wouldn’t function. It’s part of a consistently thought philosophical system.

    Leontiev is nothing like Nietzsche and stated that he reflects true and proper Christian

    Although he sometimes portrays himself as an idiot buffoon as part of his literary identity (and later inspired many real idiot buffoons), Nietzsche can be described as a philosopher and is now part of the history of European philosophy, and it’s surely more offensive for Nietzsche to be compared to some mediocre writers which almost nobody has heard of, than vice-versa.

  207. Some things from youth, like your old music collections – should become more beautiful when you re-listened to them. As the intervening years added additional layers of memory, sadness and nostalgia to those old CDs (or vinyl, tapes or mp3s, or whichever you listened to – I even had minidiscs).

    • Then there are some music which you didn’t understand in your youth, which you mightrealize now are amazing, if you could play the music on $3000 studio monitors – well I lol guess here the analogy isn’t the same with books, as music fans can age more easily than literature fans, as literature can’t upgrade their appreciation through better equipment in the same ways as can the music fans.

  208. Atari 2600:

    But it would have seemed a revolutionary change when it was new, as you could control the movement on the television – which is a paradigm reversal from the television’s use as a passive receiver until that time.

    So it could have seemed more impressive when you are first experiencing it, than new videos games of today. Probably children of the time experienced the first video games as an almost religious experience.

    I remember when I was quite young at the beginning of the century, and first trying Gamecube and PS2, that these had seemed to have amazing graphics to our eyes back then. But when more recently bought a PS4, and Nintendo Switch, as an adult, I was completely not impressed by the graphics – even though objectively the improvement is vast when you compare to the old systems; there has been no revolutionary change yet this century.

    • One huge change from 1970s, will be that there must have seemed an unsurpassable difference of experience between the cinema, and the television, as the televisions of 1970s were so bad.

    Cinema must have seemed an amazing experiences, as in normal life you were exposed only to those small, low resolution, screens.

    Whereas nowadays, we are incrementally narrowing each decade the difference between television screens and cinema, and in the last couple years OLED television are falling under $1500.

    Cinema can never seem so amazing nowadays to us, as middle class families can afford good quality screens in the home, that provide a somewhat cinema-like experience.

    In the audio world – there is far less difference. You could already be listening to good hi-fi music in the 1970s. The difference today is that the cost has fallen, and even cheap active studio monitors can make almost a lifelife hi-fi affordable for any middle class income people. But while the cost has fallen for hi-fi, the revealed preference of most people is to listen to worse music on lower quality formats.

  209. I remember how in a coronavirus lockdown, how wonderful and peaceful it was when the city was artificially emptied of other people. I was in a beautiful historical city, that is usually overcrowded with tourists and students.

    In non-coronavirus times, this is the kind of experience of emptiness is a luxury that often usually can only buy when they are top 0,1% in personal wealth – empty beaches, private islands, historical country estates (without people, unlike in former times when they would be full of peasants and serfs).

    The environment can become more accessible to the soul, when nature, or historical architecture and cities, are emptied of people. You lose the weight and self-consciousness created by being in society, and feel connected to historical times and the natural world.

    One of the most alienating and disillusioning things about our overpopulated modern world, is that a sense of our own mass reproducibility, replaceability and lack of uniqueness, is constantly forced upon us in the experience of crowds.

    If you go for cheap package holiday in Turkey or Spain, you will see a hundred families exactly like your one, and can you start to feel like you were mass produced in a factory.

    When you saw fifty other couples just like you, then you are forced to realize the uninteresting reality of your relationship, and the replicability of you and your girlfriend for either of each other (why mass weddings are popular in dictatorships and religious cults).

    But if you can spend enough money, to vacation in a private beach – you feel like you are a unique part of world, as our ancestors had before the overpopulation created by agriculture.

    In this perspective, the preference for more trees and less people, is a very natural one – if viewed from the individual’s selfish point of view.

  210. Atari 2600:

    But it would have seemed a revolutionary change when it was new, as you could control the movement on the television – which is a paradigm reversal from the television’s use as a passive receiver until that time.

    Excellent observation, and this was indeed the case at the time, at the beginning of the 80s.

    Probably children of the time experienced the first video games as an almost religious experience.

    I wouldn’t go that far. We were still spending time outside, building forts in the woods, shooting stuff, etc. I think modern kids are much more tied to their screens.

    One huge change from 1970s, will be that there must have seemed an unsurpassable difference of experience between the cinema, and the television, as the televisions of 1970s were so bad.

    Cinema must have seemed an amazing experiences, as in normal life you were exposed only to those small, low resolution, screens.

    This is true.

  211. I’m not sure it’s fair to call Nietzsche “elitist”; at least he was not elitist in the most idiotic, superficial way, of judging people according to arbitrary things like social class, that we are randomly assigned at birth.

    Of course, his elitism involved “moral” terms but it was elitism nonetheless. I hope I didn’t imply otherwise. Leontiev was similar, he also thought it terms of beauty and those who appreciate it. He despised the bourgeoisie. Leontiev was older than Nietzsche, he anticipated him.

  212. Coconuts says

    I have re-read some favorite books, some of them many times. With these, I sometimes noticed novel layers of meaning appearing as I age. It only happens with the best literature, all the other books age rather poorly.

    This becomes a good way of telling the better or more important books from the others. There are a few that I have kept going back to, others there has been a big gap. Sometimes this is really appreciable, the book takes you back to another period in your life.

    Poetry, especially spiritual or religious one is very subjective…

    Pessoa did have some quite eclectic religious views, a number of his alternate personalities are neo-pagan poets and he was very interested in rosicrucianism and things like that.

    This verse was a case for me of re-reading changing my understanding in the light of knowledge I picked up in between. When I first read it it didn’t make much sense, but around a decade later after learning more about Classical Theism and the theology around the incarnation of Christ, it can be read as close to traditional Catholic teaching.

    While he seems to engage with it, I don’t know if Pessoa accepted the Church teaching of his era on the incarnation, probably not, but this idea of transcendence through arduous deeds, struggle, sometimes defeat recurs though out the poems in that series. Given the role of the Church in Portuguese education and culture in the 1910s and 20s Scholastic philosophy and theology must have been more mainstream and much better known than nowadays (when it is niche).

    Speaking of which, are you familiar with:

    I wasn’t familiar with him but I like reading about monks and hermits, thanks for that!

  213. Coconuts says

    I was thinking of the way in which the analytical tradition originated in interest in the philosophy of mathematics and logic (with Frege) and in the implications for philosophy of progress in the natural sciences, this would be the more empiricist tendency. There was a big emphasis on the scientific method, clarity and realism about the external world. Later on challenges to the ultra-empiricist and scientistic approach of the logical positivists (and weird philosophy of mind positions like eliminative materialism) led to interest in rationalism and a renewal of metaphysics. There was also an increasing interest in Darwinian and evolutionary approaches to understanding human psychology and social relations.

    In politics this seemed to translate to ‘Enlightenment’ values, liberalism, individualism, universalism about science. More rigorous quantitative approaches in the social sciences. Philosophy of Religion had a small renaissance in new more sophisticated forms. There seemed to be limits to the kind of traction identity politics could get in this context.

    Woke is in some way more like the opposite of all of this, the revenge of ‘Continental Philosophy’ and qualitative, politically engaged sociology on the other tradition. Everything is about power relations, subjective experience (‘lived experience’), oppression and liberation, voluntarism and so on. The analytical approach is considered more a manifestation of patriarchy, white supremacy and other systems of oppression.

  214. Seraphim says

    No, it’s not yet.

  215. Seraphim says

    What does the Gospel of John tells you?
    ” Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. 48 I am that bread of life. 49 Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. 50 This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. 51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. 52 The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat? 53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. 54 Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 56 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. 57 As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. 58 This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever” (John 6:47-58).
    And the other Gospels?
    ”And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. 27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; 28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins” (Matthew 26:26-28).
    ”And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body. 23 And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it. 24 And he said unto them, This is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many” (Mark 14:22-24).
    ”And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body. 23 And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it. 24 And he said unto them, This is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many”(Luke 22:22-24).
    And the Apostle:
    ”For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: 24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. 25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. 26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come. 27 Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. 28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. 29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body” (1 Corinthians 11:23-29).

    Whoever partakes worthily in the Mystery of the Eucharist has Jesus in the body by his side, even inside.

  216. Bashibuzuk says

    Ok great.

    I get it – it’s exalting.

    But what is the nature of your mind?

  217. Seraphim says

    What do you mean by ‘nature of the mind’?

  218. Bashibuzuk says

    You see, you can offer hundreds of erudite and deeply moved citations, but when I ask you: “what is the nature of your mind”, then you don’t even understand what I am asking you about.

    When you experience anything, perceive anything – that’s your mind. If you had no mind, then there would be no experience possible, no perception of any form of reality, no thought, emotion, vision, no concept of anything at all.

    What’s the nature of this mind?

  219. Agathoklis says

    Prose fiction did exist in Antiquity:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ancient_Greek_novel

  220. Mr. Hack says

    Take heed and be grateful, for the time of the Kingdom is now at hand:

    Jesus came into Galilee , preaching the gospel of God and saying, “The time is fulfilled, the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel” (Mk 1:15).

    Now when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation; nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.” – Luke 17:20,21

    The Kingdom of God is at hand means God’s reign should rule over our lives. We must allow divine love to be the guiding principle in all we do. We must cultivate mercy and forgiveness to be the spirit that governs all our relationships. We must strive for kindness and compassion as the fruit we show to every person we encounter.

  221. Bashibuzuk says

    For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.” – Luke 17:20,21

    From the Gospel of Thomas (third paragraph) :

    Yeshua said,
    If your leaders tell you, “Look, the kingdom is in heaven,”
    then the birds of heaven will precede you.
    If they say to you, “It’s in the sea,”
    then the fish will precede you.
    But the kingdom is inside you and it is outside you.

    When you know yourselves, then you will be known,
    and you will understand that you are children of the living father.
    But if you do not know yourselves,
    then you dwell in poverty and you are poverty.

    http://www.gnosis.org/naghamm/gosthom-meyer.html

    If someone doesn’t even know what his own mind is, then how can this someone truly know God?

    It’s like trying to understand what’s is happening in the Andromeda Galaxy before cleaning one’s own backyard.

  222. Mr. Hack says

    I’ll definitely put the Gospel of St Thomas on my reading list. I’m currently reading the “Master and Margarita” that both you and AP have highly recommended.

    Mind, spirit, soul and heart (nous) are all interconnected, however, all have slightly different functions according to Orthodox theology. All of these concepts are more fully defined within the gem of Orthodox literary tradition and collection of texts known as the “Philokalia”.

    I found the text “Orthodox Psychotherapy” by Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos extremely enlightening and helpful in answering these sorts of questions too. Highly recommended:

    https://www.greekorthodoxchurch.org/orthodox_psychotherapy.html

  223. Bashibuzuk says

    Philokalia

    I did hear about it, but didn’t read it. Now I will certainly take the time to go through it because I want to know how the Orthodox Church sees the functions of the mind.

  224. Bashibuzuk says

    https://www.greekorthodoxchurch.org/orthodox_psychotherapy.html

    among these is NOUS, which refers to the `eye of the heart’ and is often translated as mind or intellect.

    What a coincidence: the Chinese character used to describe mind in Ch’an/Zen literature is also translated as “mind-heart”

    Literally, xin (心) refers to the physical heart, though it is sometimes translated as “mind” as the ancient Chinese believed the heart was the center of human cognition. For this reason, it is also sometimes translated as “heart-mind”.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xin_(philosophy)

  225. Mr. Hack says

    This will undoubtedly be a long “labor of love”, but well worth the effort. The second book that I’ve suggested is more accessible (and shorter too) and is well adopted to reaching the modern mind. You may want to start there first…. The link that I provided only offers introductory material and perhaps the first chapter, but you may still be able to locate the whole edition somewhere for free too. I read both books long ago in hardbound editions.

  226. And film stars of those days would have seemed like gods, at least in our unconscious perception – when you go from the 20 centimeter television in your home, to see a 10 metre tall projection of Elizabeth Taylor or Charlton Heston on the city’s main cinema screen.

    Imagine how it would have felt to see “Ben-Hur” at the cinema, for children who had been used to watching on the 1950s black and white television.

    This might indicate to us that the cinema will never recover to the level it had from the 1940s-1980s – as those historical conditions where the cinema screen would have seemed incredible are constantly being eroded by our improvement in television technology, and the prestige of cinema has to inevitably decline due to that.

    An “owl of minerva” of our time is that it’s never been easier to watch (and really enjoy) the old films on your television, and yet the same improvement in our televisions might mean that cinema can never reattin the prestigious role that had been a key reason for the fertility of the artform in the 20th century.

  227. Seraphim says

    ‘The kingdom of god is at hand’. It was John the Forerunner who proclaimed that. He was bringing the ‘good news’ that the Holy Spirit, withdrawn temporarily from the world because of the sins of Israel, is about to return, brought back by Jesus Christ and whoever is baptized acquires the Holy Spirit.

    ”In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, 2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. 3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight… I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance. but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire: 12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire… And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: 17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:1-3; 11-12; 16-17).
    And after that ”Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the the evangelion (=good news) of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people” (Matthew 4:23)
    ”Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the evangelion (=good news) of the kingdom of God, 15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the evangelion (=good news).

    Kingdom of God /basileia tou theou, or ‘of heaven’ (which is only a periphrasis) means ‘kingship, sovereignty, authority, rule’, the power of God to rule and judge. It is not of this world as Jesus said: ‘MY basileia, my power, is not of this world. ‘For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost” (Romans 14:17). But when Christ will come again to bring ”the kingdom that shall have no end” He will also ”judge the quick and the dead”.

    ”The true aim of our Christian life consists in the acquisition of the Holy Spirit of God. As for fasts, and vigils, and prayer, and almsgiving, and every good deed done for Christ’s sake, they are only means of acquiring the Holy Spirit of God”, said a great spiritual Father of the Church of the ‘snitches’, Saint Seraphim of Sarov. His ‘The acquisition of the Holy Spirit’ is perhaps the best introduction to the “Philokalia’.

  228. Bashibuzuk says

    Saint Seraphim of Sarov

    Saint Seraphim was without any doubt a great ascetic. Interestingly enough, he was sometimes accused of being perhaps a bit too close to the Old Believers.

    [Б]атюшка Серафим никогда не был «апологетом» новой веры, как часто его представляют ангажированные синодальные историки, а был последователем св. отцов, которые служили по старому чину. Ученики преподобного также придерживались древлего благочестия и проповедовали старую веру. Примечательно и поучительно в их поведении то, что для этого им не нужен был никакой Собор, на котором были бы сняты неправедные клятвы со старых обрядов, ибо святость и истинность дониконовских книг и чинопоследований была для них очевидна. Хорошо было бы и нам перестать сомневаться в том, что старые богослужебные книги святы, и стать последователями батюшки Серафима, которого мы особо почитаем в нашей Церкви. Хорошо было бы и староверам избавиться от ложных стереотипов, созданных синодальными баснеписцами для обниконианивания образа великого древлеправославного Старца, и признать его святость, ибо он боролся не со старообрядчеством, а с безпоповством. Но поскольку на рубеже XVIII и XIX вв. старообрядческой иерархии еще не существовало, единственной возможностью быть старовером поповского согласия было только Единоверие, появившееся в том числе и благодаря стоянию в старой вере саровских и валаамских монахов. Итак, если мы осознаем это, тогда молитвами прп. Серафима и раскол преодолеем. Аминь

    https://libr.link/files/uch_group49/uch_pgroup255/uch_uch935/image/44.jpg

    Древлеправославный старец прп. Серафим Саровский (десница прп. Серафима сложена двуперстно) Стенная роспись. Зал Церковных Соборов Храма Христа Спасителя (г. Москва). 2000 год

    https://libr.link/pravoslavie_1404/prepodobnyiy-staroobryadets-serafim-54131.html

  229. Mr. Hack says

    So on your reconsideration, is it really “not yet”? A time to “strive for kindness and compassion as the fruit we show to every person we encounter.”

  230. Bashibuzuk says

    This will undoubtedly be a long “labor of love”, but well worth the effort.

    https://azbyka.ru/otechnik/prochee/dobrotoljubie_tom_1/

    I will write my impressions once I finish it.

  231. Mr. Hack says

    I never did read the “Philokalia” all the way through from start to finish like I did the “Orthodox Psychotherapy”, however, the selected parts that I read were quite beneficial. I do hope that you find some of the answers that you are looking for, especially as regards the “mind”.

  232. Seraphim says

    In the face of this kind of summons (that sound like a subpoena), it would rather be never.

  233. Seraphim says

    Are you sure that the icon is of St. Seraphim? It is no clearly readable. Anyway, the ‘two finger’ gesture is the way the priests bless, not as they cross themselves.

  234. Mr. Hack says

    It was John and not I that implores us to love (not “luv” as you mockingly try to insinuate) our brother, irrespective of their personal relationship with the Lord (John 2:9 – 2:11 and John 4:20) and not related to any self conceived litmus test that you’ve devised, including some strange and unknown timeframe only known to yourself.

    You may tell the Hacks and APs (and understand for yourself) that I have no ‘luv’ (and I wouldn’t have any) for anyone who denies, out of principle (atheistic, buddhistic, ‘Corded Ware YR1A haplogroup’ or just ‘anti-Moskaly’), the truth of the very words of Saint John: ”There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. 8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.

  235. Bashibuzuk says

    In the article it says that it is a modern icon of St Seraphim reworked into an Old Believer style and used in the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow.

    The justification being that the Sarov ascetic community was formed by monks who have kept some Old Believer practices after the Raskol and have functioned as a kind of Edinoverie monastery before the concept became more mainstream.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edinoverie

    BTW I didn’t know that some early Valaam monks and St Herman of Alaska were also related to Sarov community.

    More information at the link that I provided in the comment above. You can read Russian, right?

  236. Seraphim says

    So, why don’t you love me?

  237. Mr. Hack says

    I do. What makes you think that I don’t? Perhaps it’s your own hatred of certain individuals that clouds your vision and you mistakenly think that some people hate you when in reality they don’t. I actually admire the deep breadth of knowledge that you bring to this blog. That doesn’t mean that I’ll always agree with your points of view.

  238. Seraphim says

    ‘Let us love one another that with one mind we may confess the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Trinity consubstantial and undivided’. Should you love the ones who not only do not confess that but condemn and abuse (and even kill) the ones who do?

  239. Mr. Hack says

    I think that we should. Jesus’ words and actions are always to be used as guides as to how we should act and lead our lives. His last words on the cross were:

    “Father, forgive them; they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34)

    “Hanging on the cross and near-death Jesus spoke these profound words. Who was Jesus alluding to when He spoke these words? Jesus was alluding to those who persecuted Him which led Him on the cross. They were His critics like the Pharisees, Scribes, High priest and so forth. Included also were the Soldiers who brought Him to the mountain of Calvary to nail Him on the cross.

    Here we see that Jesus is full of mercy, love and forgiveness towards those who made life very difficult for Him. Jesus did not bear any hatred towards those who hated and killed Him.”

    Have you experienced persecution more severe than what Christ did on Calvary?

  240. Seraphim says

    These were not the last words of Christ on the Cross. They were: ”Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost”. Like the ‘Eli, lama sabachtani’, which is the quotation of the Psalm 20, that prophesied His Resurrection, his last words are a also a quotation from a psalm: ”Thou shalt bring me out of the snare which they have hidden for me; for thou, O Lord, art my defender. 6 Into thine hands I will commit my spirit: thou hast redeemed me, O Lord God of truth. 7 Thou has hated them that idly persist in vanities: but I have hoped in the Lord 8 I will exult and be glad in thy mercy: for thou hast looked upon mine affliction; thou hast saved my soul from distresses….25 Be of good courage, and let your heart be strengthened, all ye that hope in the Lord. ” (Psalm 30). He again announces his Resurrection.
    Jesus asked His Father to forgive those who didn’t know what they were doing, like the Roman officials who condemned him on trumped charges out of cowardice and the soldiers who were driving the nails into his hands and feet, those who said: ”Now when the centurion saw what was done, he glorified God, saying, Certainly this was a righteous man”. It was not a blanket forgiveness. Does He say anything about forgiving those who knew what they were doing and ‘persisting in their vanities’: ”the people [who] stood beholding. And the rulers also with them derided him, saying, He saved others; let him save himself, if he be Christ, the chosen of God”?
    There is a sin that will not be forgiven: ”He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad. 31 Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. 32 And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come”.
    God does not forgive those who do not repent, who do not ask for forgivness.

  241. Mr. Hack says

    I don’t pretend to know the Lord’s mind when it comes to the judgement day, like you do Seraphim. You have a rather exalted opinion of yourself if you think that you do. I try to concentrate on working out my own salvation under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and try not to judge others. Have you been very successful as of late in spreading some seed?

  242. Seraphim says

    The Lord has told us repeatedly what His mind would be when it comes to the Judgement Day. Better listen to Him than to the ‘spirit’. But if you want to take your salvation in your hand…

  243. Mr. Hack says

    That I try to walk with the Lord under the guidance of the Holy Spirit should not be a matter for you to denigrate, as He is an integral part of the Holy Trinity. You just posted this above, forget already?:

    All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men