“Don’t blame it on Tolstoy’s” nine myths about the writer and his work

Was Leo Tolstoy a proud and spoiled a Pharisee, if he is guilty that in Russia there was a revolution, not before you read it at school — it reflects the writer, literary critic, author of books about Leo Tolstoy, Pavel Basinsky.

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1. Pride was the basic of the intrinsic qualities of Tolstoy, it manifested itself in his philosophical activities, and in everyday life.

Pavel Basinsky

— I don’t know what actually is the pride of Tolstoy. That he was looking for his truth and did not stop along the way? Many do not like. Many believe that it is necessary to cling to some obviously existing truth and to serve her. Tolstoy could not. If it is pride, then let it be pride, but that he and interesting.

As for everyday life — he was an extremely sensitive man who loved his children, raised them, taught them Greek, mathematics, astronomy, and cared about their physical culture. Took when they were very young, with him in Samara province, so they feel and love nature.

But you need to understand that Tolstoy, especially in the second half of his life, was so concerned about many things, and creative, and philosophical, and correspondence, and so on and so forth that completely to give itself to family can. Yes that would be wrong. So a conflict here was, but it is a conflict of a creative person with their family, and pride. Besides, Tolstoy decided the problem is not the worst way.

2. Tolstoy’s fault that happened in the Russian revolution. To strengthen this opinion contributed to Lenin’s article “Leo Tolstoy as the mirror of the Russian revolution”.

— Yes, in this sense Lenin, who staged the October revolution, successfully translated the arrows on thick. I always say that in the revolution was to blame for everything — and the intelligentsia, and the Church that is not reformed and was in the position of the dominant ideology, and the king and his entourage, and the nobility, ceased to serve the monarchy and engaged in their own private problems. For example, the nobles sold the grain and going to lose that money in Baden-Baden.

So without exception all missed Russia, you need to understand, including Tolstoy as the thinker of his time, as the man listened. I absolutely do not agree with its denial of the state of denial army.

But don’t blame it on Tolstoy. Tolstoy, incidentally, was against the revolution and did much to soften the manners of his time, for people to return to morality, to Christianity.

3. Leo Tolstoy was an unbeliever, completely denied the faith and was in this sense a people.

— Most of all hurt Tolstoy when he said that he discourages people from faith. He argued that the main thing he says — without faith in God there is no life. Another thing that Tolstoy denied the ecclesiastical form of faith. But there are many people who believe, but they have problems with the Church. And they find the truth in quest of Tolstoy. I don’t see anything wrong.

In addition, many people (and this is common) starting to get involved in Thick, and then come to the Church. This is especially true in the Soviet era. And previously, many Tolstoyans then turned in the direction of the Church.

Leo Tolstoy with his grandchildren

4. Tolstoy the writer and Tolstoy the thinker are two different sizes. And Tolstoy in the last years of his life as the great writer came to an end, having mostly philosophical questions.

— I categorically against this. Already in “War and peace” and earlier things of the Colon acts as a philosopher. And many of his journalistic stuff written with artistic conviction. Worth a read, for example, his answer to the Synod, where he writes that “I am like a bird out of the shell, can’t go back” — it’s a stunning artistic image.

Tolstoy as an artist has always been on top and anywhere from it not to fall. With all its denial, late in life he wrote “Hadji Murat”. And in the period of his philosophizing — such works as “Master and worker” and “Father Sergius” and “the Kreutzer Sonata” and “the Death of Ivan Ilyich” and other things that have become masterpieces of Russian prose.

Even the “Resurrection” — in the novel, of course, didactic, where finger pointing hinder the free flow of the narrative — there are portions written more strongly than “War and peace” and “Anna Karenina”. Because, after all, Tolstoy grew up as an artist.

Another thing is that he could not repeat, could not write one historical novel after another, one family after another novel and was looking for new ways. A man who is looking for new ways, sometimes stumbles, wrong.

Tolstoy and interesting by finding new ways. He writes the first huge epic, then a family affair, then a short children’s stories, folk stories, then absolutely remarkable story. Creativity Tolstoy should be considered in the process, not to beat early late Tolstoy Tolstoy.

5. Promiscuity and perversity Tolstoy.

One of the most common myths against which I always rise — ostensibly about some secret depravity of Tolstoy, his sexual gigantism, though he professed sexual purity and stuff, and he cheated on his wife. It was nothing like that. Tolstoy lived after marriage is very moral life in this sense, and no discrepancy here between his preaching and his lifestyle was not.

6. Tolstoy constantly all taught.

– It is also a persistent myth about a Thick as some such gloomy, self-assured preacher at the end of life all taught.

Tolstoy all his life understood his diaries with himself and could not understand, let alone teach him. He expressed the thoughts that came, but never they are not imposed on anyone.

Another thing is that around him there was the likeness of the sect of Tolstoyans who tried ideas of Leo Tolstoy as something to fix and make absolute. But for Tolstoy, they were never absolute. For him it was absolutely the existence of God, and all the rest he sought, tried, suffered and so on.

7. The Hypocrisy Of Tolstoy. Like the Countess, worrying about a spouse, trying to put ground meat in a vegetarian dish, and he, promoting the love of neighbor was yelling at her.

— Tolstoy from a certain moment became a staunch vegetarian, he ate meat and fish. He believed that man should not eat “the mutilated corpses of animals.” Countess, taking care of him, indeed, sometimes were added to it beef broth in mushroom, he noticed, but not angry. He sometimes joked, sometimes said, “Sonia, I’m ready every day to eat the broth, just to have you I do not lie.” And hypocrisy was not any.

He was respectful to others ‘ beliefs. There are vegetarians that begin immediately at the table to convince others that it is impossible to eat meat. For Fat always were people, including those who lived in the house that ate meat. Herself the Countess ate meat, and did not have any right terrible quarrels because of this.

8. Tolstoy can be read separately, without dealing with the study of the personality of the writer.

Is one of the troubles reading the works of Tolstoy. In fact, they cannot fully understand, not knowing the identity of the writer. His work does not exist in isolation from his person.

There are writers who have read only their texts. Especially this can be said about French literature, when the text must speak for itself. For example, the works of Flaubert, Balzac, Zola.

Tolstoy’s texts speak of course for themselves, but the depth of their understanding without a knowledge of the worldview of Tolstoy, of the peculiarities of his personality, his relationships with loved ones, with the state, the Church, of course, impossible. Tolstoy — is itself a work. And life, directly surrounding it, flew into pieces as it happens in “War and peace”, “Anna Karenina”.

On the other hand, creativity in some way affected his life, including family. Therefore, I believe that knowledge of the personality of Tolstoy, even some hidden points of his biography is absolutely necessary. But a full-fledged biography of Tolstoy, we are still not written.

9. In school it is not necessary to study the novels of Tolstoy: they are not understandable for high school students.

— I understand the problem of modern students who can’t read long periods in “War and peace”, especially the historic retreat. And not mind adapted, abbreviated version of the novel. Why not? But it is important that children still have an idea about “War and peace”, “Anna Karenina”.

We have the winner wrong point of view that the school to your dad earlier, it should be read in a much more Mature age. And what can children learn? But if children do not start to read the novels of Tolstoy in school, they, as adults, will not read them ever. Here you need to be proactive, to give children more intelligent things than you can even perceive their development. Then they will remember it will come back or not come back. But, if they do not give the school, they will not return to it ever, that’s for sure.

Prepared By Oksana Golovko

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