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alexander-solzhenitsyn

Translator’s Foreword (Fluctuarius Argenteus)

Almost by necessity, all previous Kholmogorov translations have been those of his older texts, with a “lag” between the original and the translation varying between several days and several months. What you see now is a much rarer treat. Kholmogorov has just finished a long and engrossing article on Alexander Solzhenitsyn, clocking in at 16,000 words, to be published by a Russian conservative outlet. Publishing a complete translation on The Unz Review would require the text to be split into three or four parts, and would be an exercise in futility if the figure of Solzhenitsyn doesn’t attract enough attention from the readership in the first place.

As a result, this text was born. It is the preamble to Kholmogorov’s yet-unpublished Solzhenitsynean magnum opus, and it functions well on its own as a glimpse into Solzhenitsyn’s status in present-day Russia, going far beyond CliffsNotes truisms and common ideological myths surrounding his name. The article argues that, far from being a relic of the Cold War, Solzhenitsyn remains a relevant figure, perhaps even more so than during his lifetime, with many of his predictions coming true and some of his suggestions and ideas being adopted wholesale by the Russian government.

It is worth adding that Solzhenitsyn’s global importance is far from diminishing any time soon as well, attracting both detractors (usually from the NeoCon/NeoLib Unholy Alliance, as evidenced by this hot take) and admirers (e.g., Jordan B. Peterson, one of the Alt Right’s intellectual darlings, speaks fondly of Solzhenitsyn’s influence on his life philosophy in 12 Rules for Life).

Unz Review readers have the rare opportunity to get a primer of this article before it comes out in Russian. If it flies well with the audience, get ready for an epic three- or four-parter!

Note from AK: If you are enjoying these translations, please feel free to donate to Egor Kholmogorov here: http://akarlin.com/donations-kholmogorov/

***

putin-solzhenitsyn

Alexander Solzhenitsyn: A Russian Prophet

Translated by Fluctuarius Argenteus

Alexander Solzhenitsyn was, without doubt, the most politically successful author in world history. Surely there were crowned poets, but their talents had never been truly exceptional. There were politicians awarded the Nobel Prize in literature, such as Winston Churchill. There were men of letters who had made a successful bureaucratic career, such as Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Prime Minister of Saxe-Weimar. But there was but one writer whose words could uplift entire continents and send shockwaves through global political trends. There was only one who bequeathed his nation a detailed ideological and political program that would become not less, but more relevant after his death. This man was Solzhenitsyn.

At present, Russia – to both the joy and chagrin of many – is entering a new political era, codified specifically by Solzhenitsyn’s writings and ideas. It is not the Solzhenitsyn of ideologically varnished Liberal anthologies, nor is this his twisted inversion, the Solzhenitsyn who, as an “enemy of the people”, is the never-ending source of Neo-Communist hysterics. The driving factor of current politics is becoming the true Solzhenitsyn, as revealed in his actual writings – novels, short stories, articles, discourses, and interviews.

Some formulas coined by the writer became part of government policy, such as the emphasis on the “preservation of the people”. Others became a political reality, such as his call for a nationally minded authoritarianism, as opposed to the aping Western multiparty democracy. There are also still many – such as his ideas regarding the zemstvo, organs of “small-space democracy” – that are yet to be widely heard and discussed.

Our civic and political maturation, in line with Solzhenitsyn’s vision, is happening right here and now. For many years, Solzhenitsyn kept pointing out that the mid-17th century church reforms that had provoked the schism of the Old Believers was one of the direst and most calamitous events of Russian history. Nothing could be more pathetic than a struggle against the most pious and hard-working part of the Russian nation. But we nowadays see a determination to heal that old wound from within both the government and the Orthodox Church.

On August 30, 1991, Solzhenitsyn wrote a letter to President Yeltsin, urging him to refrain from automatically accepting Soviet administrative demarcation lines as the new state boundaries. For more than 15 years, he kept insisting that the idea of Crimea and Sevastopol as parts of the Ukraine is nonsensical, and that the Eastern Ukrainian oblasts, once known as Novorossiya, should be granted the right to make their own choice of allegiance in a referendum. A rejection of all attempts to “drive a wedge between kindred peoples” and construct the Ukrainian state as an anti-Russia project is a mainstay of Solzhenitsyn’s writings – and reflective of his own dual Russian (Solzhenitsyn) and Ukrainian (Scherbak) ancestry. All of this seemed of only minor importance at the time of his passing in 2008, but ever since 2014, we have been living in a reality where these issues have again become cardinal.

One of Solzhenitsyn’s chief concerns was the question of Russian unity: The injustice inherent in the system of federalism that was rife with another “parade of sovereignties”[1], the idiocy of the central government making treaties with minority republics, the unacceptable discrimination against the Russian language. Solzhenitsyn was one of the first critics of the US Public Law 86-90 regarding the so-called “Captive Nations”, in which Russia was tarred as the “occupier” of ephemeral “nations” such as “Idel-Ural” and “Cossackia”. Once again, we feel Solzhenitsyn’s legacy acquiring the most acute present-day relevance.

It is not just Solzhenitsyn’s ideas that are coming to the fore, but even his historical appraisals. It was Solzhenitsyn who hailed Peter Stolypin as the consummate Russian statesman, and the late imperial Prime Minister now occupies a central place in the Russian political canon. Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction. The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II. However, even in this case, we see a creeping evolution towards latent monarchism in Solzhenitsyn’s old age.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=faqpVhB_INM

ROGPR: Towards Tropical Hyperborea?

It sometimes seems that even nature itself hews to Solzhenitsyn’s will. When he first proclaimed the necessity of developing the Russian North-East and harnessing its vast and inhospitable spaces, it seemed an impossible utopian dream. His claim that “Russia is the North-East of the planet, and our ocean is the Arctic, not the Indian” was countered by the seemingly commonsense reply that the ocean is called the Arctic Ocean – or the “Ice Ocean”, as it is called in Russian – because it’s literally covered with ice, and that one can’t live in the permafrost. Soon afterwards, the rapid melting of the Arctic has begun to provoke geopolitical ferment; there are conversations about internationalizing the Northern Sea Route to foreign shipping, and mutterings that Solzhenitsyn’s call to settle and secure the Far North was left unattended for too long. But better late than never.

Solzhenitsyn’s legacy is not only a Russian, but a planetary political phenomenon. It was Solzhenitsyn who in his famous Harvard Speech warned the West that they were not alone on this planet, that civilizations described by Western historians and culture theorists are no mere decorative elements, and instead living worlds in themselves, that cannot have a Western measure imposed upon them. Russia, a unique civilization, is of these historical worlds. And the Western measure itself has become subjected to spiritual corrosion, and has fallen far relative to the bygone greatness of Christian civilization. Solzhenitsyn’s once-shocking idea that a globalist “End of History” is impossible has since been appropriated by Western political theorists, namely Samuel Huntington with his “Clash of Civilizations”. This very idea has constituted the bedrock of Russian foreign policy since Putin’s Munich Speech in 2007.

The Gulag Archipelago, published in the West, carried out a sweeping detoxification of Western elites from their poisoning by Communism, that “opiate for the intellectuals” (to quote Raymond Aron). However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism, the very force that had spawned Bolshevism. A liberal version of anti-Communism logically led to the triumph of Communism under the modernized and updated guise of Cultural Marxism – leftist feminism, totalitarian “tolerance”, racist “anti-racism”, the final victory of Homintern. Even this had already been envisioned by Solzhenitsyn. He theorized that, at a certain point in the future, a Russia liberated from Communist totalitarianism would gaze in horror at the triumph of a Liberal-built Western “Communism”.

That said, Solzhenitsyn’s main concern was never an abstract global humanity, but the Russian people. He is perhaps the writer with the most acute and intensely conscious national awareness out of those who had risen to fame in the second half of the 20th century. His resistance to Communism cannot be properly understood without its main motive: The Russian people cannot and must not be used as a tool for any utopias or experiments, be they Communist or “progressive” in nature. Solzhenitsyn equally rejects political projects that treat Russians as expendable fodder – be it for the Empire, or the “world revolution”, or the triumph of industrialism, or the space race. Everything that improves and intensifies Russian national life is good; everything that doesn’t, is bad.

His resolute and outspoken anti-Communism, his determination to bring down the Reds whatever the cost, was borne out of the conviction that the Occidentalist Marxist utopia had led to a colossal and bloodstained waste of national human resources, that the Russians had been reduced to cogs in a machine and fuel for the fire, that the organic development of Russia, both spiritual and economic, had ceased. The constant leitmotif of his books is not just the enunciation of the damage wrought by Communist tyranny upon the Russian psyche and livelihoods, but also in revealing the forces of resistance and freedom hidden inside that psyche.

In addition to his anti-Communism, he was just as merciless towards both Occidentalist and plain Western Russophobia. He lambasted the intelligentsia, devoid of tradition and roots, as “the Smatterers”[2]. He introduced the very notion of Russophobia into modern political parlance, to be later developed into a coherent theory by his closest ally, the mathematician Igor Shafarevich. Solzhenitsyn provided his definition of Russophobia: The view of Russia as a backward “land of slaves”, the claim that the Soviet regime was a natural continuation of historical Russian statehood, both Muscovite and Imperial, which was purportedly also based on wanton cruelty and inhumanity. In his anti-Russophobe polemics, Solzhenitsyn emphasized the normalcy of Russia’s pre-Bolshevik history. He spurned both October and February revolutions of 1917 as the fruits of a nihilistic desire to unmake and remake Russia based on a total ignorance of Russian life.

Solzhenitsyn is opposed to both the verbal mockeries of Russia-bashing “pluralists” with their non-concealed contempt for “this country”, and the cold determination of Western politicians and political theorists to paint Russians and not Communism as the main adversary of the West. Solzhenitsyn publicly lashed out at US military plans to specifically bomb the Russian population in case of war, and came to realize both his own and his Russian compatriots’ unenviable position as “a grain caught between two millstones”[3] – that of Communism and that of Western Liberalism.

It was clear to him that these millstones were both just parts of an infernal machine built by a godless anti-Christian “humanism”. Communism and Liberalism are two siblings spawned by the Enlightenment ideology that would put mankind on the disastrous road of worshiping Matter instead of Spirit, which would inevitably lea to the sullying and degradation of said Matter. Solzhenitsyn puts forward a detailed and consistent anti-Enlightenment doctrine: A return to God, voluntary self-restraint and self-restriction of humankind, emphasizing duties instead of ever-expanding “rights”, prioritizing inner freedom, and rejecting the sacrifice of national life not only to totalitarian utopia but also to the orgy of freedom. Solzhenitsyn’s doctrine is one of the most consistent and politically sound Conservative philosophies formulated over the last couple of centuries. His duel with the ghosts of Voltaire and Rousseau goes on after his death, and the score is still in the Russian writer’s favor.

sviyazhsk

Sviyazhsk, Russia.

It was Solzhenitsyn’s activity directed against the convergence of the Western and Soviet systems, towards the moral discreditation of Communism and the awakening of a spirit of radical resistance to the Red evil in the West, his critique of the Liberal foundations and hypocritical hegemonism of the West itself, and last but not least, his post-homecoming attempts at a moral consolidation of Russia around a nationalist, conservative, populist, anti-Western and anti-Neo-Communist platform – it was all of this which drove the global Enlightenment project into its current state of crisis.

Moreover, this is not just a merely ideological crisis, manifested in the increasingly totalitarian Liberal self-destruction of Western civilization. It is also a geopolitical crisis, caused by the following fact: Moscow, once a center of global Communism (that is, one of the poles of the Enlightenment spectrum), is rapidly transforming – unless it deviates from Solzhenitsyn’s legacy – into a Vatican, or if you will, a Mecca of Conservatism. It is precisely here where the strongest redoubt that defends the image of mankind in its traditional Christian interpretation is now located.

***

References

[1] A byword for the snowballing secessionism of Soviet republics in 1988-91, when they first proclaimed “state sovereignty” (primacy of republican legislation over Soviet laws) and then full independence.

[2] The most common English translation of his 1974 essay Obrazovanschina, alluding to the narrow and superficial intellectual development of Liberal intelligentsia.

[3] Russian proverb equivalent to “between the devil and the deep blue sea”, also the title of Solzhenitsyn’s memoirs published in 1998-2003 (usually rendered in English as simply Between Two Millstones).

***

 
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  1. Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.

    What’s the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.

    What’s there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn’t deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint…but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism

    I really don’t get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say “biologist” or “racist”) can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as “a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism”…I just don’t see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let’s hope Martyanov will comment on this piece 🙂

    • Replies: @Fluctuarius
    Kholmogorov and your very undertaker could be called passéists; AK is often dubbed a futurist.

    However, to quote Herzen of all people, "like the eagle on the Russian coat-of-arms, our heads were turned into different directions, but our beating heart was one and the same".

    One of the reasons for the USSR's ignominious destruction was an imbalance between tradition and modernity. The blind worship of technology, nuclear power, space flight, etc. did not do any good to keep the country from collapsing. All invocations of Gagarin, power plants, and scientific progress could not compete with the propaganda images of, say, Latvian or Ukranian rural plenty, or Georgian and Armenian ancient past.

    Likewise, the excessive anti-modernism of the Pochvennichestvo and the Pamyat Society failed to connect with the overwhelmingly urban Russian youth (hence the cliché image of a Russian nationalist as a rural retrograde with sauerkraut stuck in his beard).

    Therefore, we strive to keep our aesthetic idiosyncrasies from clouding our vision and work towards a common goal.

    , @notanon

    What’s there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II?
     
    watching the current media demonization of Putin and Russia and the attacks on Iraq, Libya and Syria makes me wonder whether or not that whole episode (WW1, Bolshevik revolution etc) was simply a central banker's plot to spread their tentacles.

    #

    I really don’t get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say “biologist” or “racist”) can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk...
     
    i can't speak for AK but if you accept religiosity as a thing and if you also accept behavior is partly genetic and then add in the ubiquity and scale of religiosity over human history then it seems to me you have to accept that religion is either adaptive or at least was adaptive in the past - so counter intuitively religion makes perfect sense from a materialist point of view (or at least it did so in the past, may or may not be now and/or may be true in the future).
    , @Verymuchalive
    " If Christianity goes, all of our culture goes with it." - TS Eliot
    If you don't realise this, you really are an idiot.
    , @Dmitry
    Not specifically replying to your comment, but rather the discussion on him as whole.

    Solzhenitsyn was a talented artist.

    The members of the creative professions are a very important type of person, but usually not suitable, or even the opposite of what is suitable, for a sober political leadership, or even sensible political commentary on that leadership.

    With all respect to van Gogh, while he was undisputed expert on describing interplay of light on a sunflower, I would not imagine he would have had the most accurate views on political organization of his society, let alone would I follow his advice on military or economic development.

    The accurate situation with Solzhenitsyn - a very talented creative professional, but less than objective or factually accurate historian or commentator.

    That said,members of the creative professions can be useful for politics, in helping to develop national mythology, and in supporting nationalist movements. This is a very historically common situation - with people like Verdi in Italy, or Janacek in Czech Republic, having a key influence in development of national consciousness.
    , @Dmitry

    I really don’t get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say “biologist” or “racist”) can
     
    Yes Karlin blog posts are a different genre. He usually tries to stay a bit grounded, and to follow - for example - the actual data and graphs for birthrates, rather than writing some fantasy piece about the meaning of birthrates. It's more similar to what is written in Forbes.

    But it's not bad to add some more 'dreamer' commentators like Kholmogorov to the blog. He provides variety and he is still a thoughtful commentator.
    , @5371
    [What’s the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?]

    You think there were lots of people who played a role like his? Then name some.
    , @The Big Red Scary

    What’s there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II?
     
    After reading Dominic Lieven's biography of Nicholas II (which includes a fair amount of information about other important figures of the time, including Sergei Witte and Pyotr Stolypin), I came
    to better appreciate the difficulty of the situation in which Nicholas II found himself. It seems to me that the administration of the Russian Empire had become so complex that no monarch, however competent, could have been an effective autocrat. One way or another, major decision making power was going to have to be delegated. The ultimate question was how to do this without completely destroying Russian society. Even England, which was able to make the transition to a constitutional monarchy at an early and more opportune time, did not escape civil war. It's not at all clear to me that a "competent winner" of a tsar would have succeeded in making the transition.
    , @Seraphim
    @What’s the point in singling out Alexander Parvus...

    A few details of his bio, carefully concealed, gleaned from Wikipedia (of course there are more scholarly writings* would show you the point and why his name is so strenuously avoided:

    "Alexander Lvovich Parvus born Israel Lazarevich Gelfand (1867-1924), was a writer, historian, Marxist Revolutionary and a Senior Member of the Social Democratic Party of Germany...
    Israel Lazarevich Gelfand was born to an ethnic Jewish family on September 8, 1867 in the shtetl of Berazino, Russian Empire, now part of Belarus...
    in the fall of 1888 Gelfand enrolled at the University of Basel, where he studied political economy...
    Alienated from the backwardness of agrarian Russia and the limited political horizons there, Gelfand moved to Germany, joined the Social Democratic Party and befriended German revolutionary Rosa Luxemburg...
    In 1900, he met Vladimir Lenin for the first time, in Munich, each admiring the other's theoretical works. Parvus encouraged Lenin to begin publishing his revolutionary paper Iskra...
    Parvus' attempts to become a German citizen proved fruitless...
    However, German counter-intelligence had penetrated part of the socialist revolutionary network and upon reading his writing in the socialist press during the Russo-Japanese War, found Parvus had predicted that Russia would lose the war, resulting in unrest and revolution. When this proved to be the case, Parvus' prestige among his socialist and other German comrades increased. Thus, German intelligence soon estimated he would be useful in efforts against the Russian Empire.
    During this time he developed the concept of using a foreign war to provoke an internal revolt within a country. It was at this time that Parvus revived, from Karl Marx, the concept-strategy of "permanent revolution". He communicated this philosophy to Trotsky who then further expanded and developed it. There were broad discussions on the questions of "permanent revolution" within the social democratic movement in the period leading up to 1917. The method was eventually adopted by Vladimir Lenin and the Bolsheviks in Lenin's April Theses in 1917...
    [After the 1905 revolution] Parvus moved to Istanbul in Turkey, where he lived for five years. There he set up an arms trading company which profited handsomely during the Balkan War. He became the financial and political advisor of the Young Turks. In 1912 he was made editor of Turk Yurdu, their daily newspaper. He worked closely with the triumvirs known as the Three Pashas - Enver, Talat and Cemal - and Finance Minister Djavid Bey. His firm dealt with the deliveries of foodstuffs for the Turkish army and he was a business partner of the Krupp concern, of Vickers Limited, and of the famous arms dealer Basil Zaharov. Arms dealings with Vickers Limited at war time gave basis to the theory that Alexander Parvus was also a British intelligence asset...
    While in Turkey, Parvus became close with German ambassador Hans Freiherr von Wangenheim who was known to be partial to establishing revolutionary fifth columns among the allies. Consequently, Parvus offered his plan via Baron von Wangenheim to the German General Staff: the paralyzing of Russia via general strike, financed by the German government. Von Wangenheim sent Parvus to Berlin where the latter arrived on the 6 March 1915 and presented a 20-page plan titled A preparation of massive political strikes in Russia to the German government...
    Parvus' detailed plan recommended the division of Russia by sponsoring the Bolshevik faction of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party, encouraging ethnic separatists in various Russian regions, and supporting various writers whose criticism of Tsarism continued during wartime. Basing himself on his 1905 experiences, Parvus theorised that the division of Russia and its loss in the First World War was the best way to bring about a socialist revolution...
    Parvus placed his bets on Lenin, as the latter was not only a radical but willing to accept the sponsorship of the Tsar's wartime enemy, Germany. The two met in Bern in May 1915 and agreed to collaboration through their organizations, though Lenin remained very careful never to get associated with Parvus in public. There is no certain proof that they ever met face to face again, although there are indications that such a meeting may well have occurred on April 13, 1917 during Lenin's stop-over in Stockholm...
    German intelligence set up Parvus' financial network via offshore operations in Copenhagen, setting up relays for German money to get to Russia via fake financial transactions between front organizations. A large part of the transactions of these companies were genuine, but those served to bury the transfer of money to the Bolsheviks, a strategy made feasible by the weak and overburdened fiscal and customs offices in Scandinavia, which were inadequate for the booming black market in these countries during the war...
    After the October Revolution in Russia for obvious political reasons his role was denied and he himself vilified. This continued during Joseph Stalin's era and sometimes had anti-semitic overtones to it".

    * "Alexander Helphand-Parvus--Russian Revolutionary and German Patriot", by Heinz Schurer, in The Russian Review, Vol. 18, No. 4 (Oct., 1959), pp. 313-331
    , @Andrei Martyanov

    Let’s hope Martyanov will comment on this piece
     
    Kholmogorov is a sort of Dugin 2.0 with no systemic education, he dropped out of MSU in a year then went to study to some religious Madras which he also didn't finish, IIRC. So, to comment on some tertiary, not even secondary, pretentious pseudo-"intellectual"? Again, Gabriel Charmez comes to mind. In general, Kholmogorov is a classic representative of a lost generation of amateurs of 1990s which tried to put on themselves a mantle of "thinkers" in 1990s-early 2000s only to be exposed, most of them, as frauds. But, in general, shady opportunist with developed vernacular to BS uncritical and even less educated than him followers. So, what's to comment on a demagogue?
    , @Jake
    Parvus marks how the Western powers and Turkey were all using revolutionaries to try to destroy Russia, long before WW1. Parvus worked for the Germans government, as well as for German Communists. He was the most important non-Turkish player among the Young Turks. He almost certainly also worked for British secret service. Parvus is a perfect example of the International Jew who hates seemingly every Gentile nation that arose out of Christendom. That Russia came to be the most despised, most by a huge degree, before the late 19th century is telling. International Jews were not involved in major activities to ruin the British Empire or the USA, nor the Ottoman Empire.

    What happened to Russia is what all Leftists want to happen to all white Gentile lands and their peoples. Knowing Parvus is very important to grasping how it came to be, and who were the ones promoting it.

    Nicholas II is a lesson, the best lesson, that the Left, like its father Satan, lies all the time and delights most in lying people into hating the people and institutions and ideas that can save them from Leftist horrors. Nicholas II is a type of martyr.
  2. When he first proclaimed the necessity of developing the Russian North-East and harnessing its vast and inhospitable spaces, it seemed an impossible utopian dream.

    I don’t believe in man-made global warming but they should experiment with domed towns anyway – good practice for space.

  3. It was clear to him that these millstones were both just parts of an infernal machine built by a godless anti-Christian “humanism”. Communism and Liberalism are two siblings spawned by the Enlightenment ideology that would put mankind on the disastrous road of worshiping Matter instead of Spirit, which would inevitably lea to the sullying and degradation of said Matter. Solzhenitsyn puts forward a detailed and consistent anti-Enlightenment doctrine: A return to God, voluntary self-restraint and self-restriction of humankind, emphasizing duties instead of ever-expanding “rights”, prioritizing inner freedom, and rejecting the sacrifice of national life not only to totalitarian utopia but also to the orgy of freedom. Solzhenitsyn’s doctrine is one of the most consistent and politically sound Conservative philosophies formulated over the last couple of centuries. His duel with the ghosts of Voltaire and Rousseau goes on after his death, and the score is still in the Russian writer’s favor.

    By the very fact of publishing this piece you seem to imply that you admire Solzhenitsyn. So tell us Anatoly, what’s holding YOU back from embracing his Christian Orthodox philosophy for yourself? I strongly suspect that if Solzhenitsyn knew you and your tenacious holding to the secular philosophies of futurism and transhumanism, he’d quickly reach for a bottle of bromo. Both movements are clearly founded on a scholastic foothold inimical to Orthodox Christian theology. Why pretend to respect the man, when indeed you represent a way of life foreign to his teachings and his message?

  4. Looking forward to the Sovok reaction to this piece.

    Paging Admiral Martyanov. 🙂

  5. @German_reader

    Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.
     
    What's the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.
     
    What's there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn't deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint...but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism
     
    I really don't get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say "biologist" or "racist") can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as "a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism"...I just don't see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let's hope Martyanov will comment on this piece :-)

    Kholmogorov and your very undertaker could be called passéists; AK is often dubbed a futurist.

    However, to quote Herzen of all people, “like the eagle on the Russian coat-of-arms, our heads were turned into different directions, but our beating heart was one and the same”.

    One of the reasons for the USSR’s ignominious destruction was an imbalance between tradition and modernity. The blind worship of technology, nuclear power, space flight, etc. did not do any good to keep the country from collapsing. All invocations of Gagarin, power plants, and scientific progress could not compete with the propaganda images of, say, Latvian or Ukranian rural plenty, or Georgian and Armenian ancient past.

    Likewise, the excessive anti-modernism of the Pochvennichestvo and the Pamyat Society failed to connect with the overwhelmingly urban Russian youth (hence the cliché image of a Russian nationalist as a rural retrograde with sauerkraut stuck in his beard).

    Therefore, we strive to keep our aesthetic idiosyncrasies from clouding our vision and work towards a common goal.

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @German_reader

    Therefore, we strive to keep our aesthetic idiosyncrasies from clouding our vision and work towards a common goal.
     
    Such alliances are certainly necessary, but I do have to wonder if the tensions and contradictions might not become too great at some point. But that's hardly a problem specific just to Russian nationalists.
    You're the translator of Kholmogorov's articles? Many thanks, even if I'm often critical of Mr Kholmogorov's writings, your service to those of us who can't read Russian is appreciated.
    , @Daniel Chieh
    So Adeptus Mechanicus is the future?
  6. @Fluctuarius
    Kholmogorov and your very undertaker could be called passéists; AK is often dubbed a futurist.

    However, to quote Herzen of all people, "like the eagle on the Russian coat-of-arms, our heads were turned into different directions, but our beating heart was one and the same".

    One of the reasons for the USSR's ignominious destruction was an imbalance between tradition and modernity. The blind worship of technology, nuclear power, space flight, etc. did not do any good to keep the country from collapsing. All invocations of Gagarin, power plants, and scientific progress could not compete with the propaganda images of, say, Latvian or Ukranian rural plenty, or Georgian and Armenian ancient past.

    Likewise, the excessive anti-modernism of the Pochvennichestvo and the Pamyat Society failed to connect with the overwhelmingly urban Russian youth (hence the cliché image of a Russian nationalist as a rural retrograde with sauerkraut stuck in his beard).

    Therefore, we strive to keep our aesthetic idiosyncrasies from clouding our vision and work towards a common goal.

    Therefore, we strive to keep our aesthetic idiosyncrasies from clouding our vision and work towards a common goal.

    Such alliances are certainly necessary, but I do have to wonder if the tensions and contradictions might not become too great at some point. But that’s hardly a problem specific just to Russian nationalists.
    You’re the translator of Kholmogorov’s articles? Many thanks, even if I’m often critical of Mr Kholmogorov’s writings, your service to those of us who can’t read Russian is appreciated.

  7. @German_reader

    Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.
     
    What's the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.
     
    What's there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn't deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint...but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism
     
    I really don't get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say "biologist" or "racist") can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as "a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism"...I just don't see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let's hope Martyanov will comment on this piece :-)

    What’s there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II?

    watching the current media demonization of Putin and Russia and the attacks on Iraq, Libya and Syria makes me wonder whether or not that whole episode (WW1, Bolshevik revolution etc) was simply a central banker’s plot to spread their tentacles.

    #

    I really don’t get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say “biologist” or “racist”) can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk…

    i can’t speak for AK but if you accept religiosity as a thing and if you also accept behavior is partly genetic and then add in the ubiquity and scale of religiosity over human history then it seems to me you have to accept that religion is either adaptive or at least was adaptive in the past – so counter intuitively religion makes perfect sense from a materialist point of view (or at least it did so in the past, may or may not be now and/or may be true in the future).

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @German_reader

    then it seems to me you have to accept that religion is either adaptive or at least was adaptive in the past
     
    That's certainly true, but could you consciously make yourself believe in something just because it's evolutionarily adaptive?
    I often find nationalists who enlist religion in the service of their national cause a bit cynical tbh, they seem unconcerned about the question of religious truth. Unless you really believe that Christ died for our sins and rose from the dead, what's the point in going on about the centrality of Christianity for your national identity? And in the modern world such belief is very hard for many people (with good reason imo).
    There are also inherent tensions between universalist religions and nationalism.
    Many identitarians/nationalists seem to believe they can just ignore those issues, but imo that's an illusion.
  8. @notanon

    What’s there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II?
     
    watching the current media demonization of Putin and Russia and the attacks on Iraq, Libya and Syria makes me wonder whether or not that whole episode (WW1, Bolshevik revolution etc) was simply a central banker's plot to spread their tentacles.

    #

    I really don’t get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say “biologist” or “racist”) can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk...
     
    i can't speak for AK but if you accept religiosity as a thing and if you also accept behavior is partly genetic and then add in the ubiquity and scale of religiosity over human history then it seems to me you have to accept that religion is either adaptive or at least was adaptive in the past - so counter intuitively religion makes perfect sense from a materialist point of view (or at least it did so in the past, may or may not be now and/or may be true in the future).

    then it seems to me you have to accept that religion is either adaptive or at least was adaptive in the past

    That’s certainly true, but could you consciously make yourself believe in something just because it’s evolutionarily adaptive?
    I often find nationalists who enlist religion in the service of their national cause a bit cynical tbh, they seem unconcerned about the question of religious truth. Unless you really believe that Christ died for our sins and rose from the dead, what’s the point in going on about the centrality of Christianity for your national identity? And in the modern world such belief is very hard for many people (with good reason imo).
    There are also inherent tensions between universalist religions and nationalism.
    Many identitarians/nationalists seem to believe they can just ignore those issues, but imo that’s an illusion.

    • Replies: @notanon

    but could you consciously make yourself believe in something just because it’s evolutionarily adaptive?
     
    i'm in the odd situation of being religious by nature but materialist by choice so it wouldn't be hard for me personally but for someone who isn't religious by nature i think the main point may be recognizing religion is (or at least was) adaptive could take away a lot of the hostility towards religion and make materialists more neutral towards it.

    There are also inherent tensions between universalist religions and nationalism.
     
    this is true - there are all sorts of practical problems with specific religions so I guess my point is more related to materialists becoming more neutral to the idea of religion as a thing in itself.
    , @AaronB

    That’s certainly true, but could you consciously make yourself believe in something just because it’s evolutionarily adaptive?
     
    Of course. If you find that certain assumptions you can't prove by logic are nevertheless necessary for humans to flourish on this earth, then it's paradoxically logical to conclude that "reality" on a deeper level indicates the "existence" of these assumptions, in some form.

    Of course, you cannot accept this. For cultural revitalization to occur, the older generation of whites simply has to die off. We must wait patiently.
    , @iffen
    they seem unconcerned about the question of religious truth

    There is no "truth" in a religious truth.

    A nationalist could be supportive of religion if he believed that the religion was "good" for his people.
  9. @German_reader

    Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.
     
    What's the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.
     
    What's there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn't deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint...but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism
     
    I really don't get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say "biologist" or "racist") can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as "a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism"...I just don't see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let's hope Martyanov will comment on this piece :-)

    ” If Christianity goes, all of our culture goes with it.” – TS Eliot
    If you don’t realise this, you really are an idiot.

    • Replies: @notanon
    I'm not convinced that's true.

    I think Christianity applied selective pressure on Europeans which changed Euro genetics over time (specifically the creation of a cooperative-individualist mindset with a more universalist and less familial instinctive morality) and the extremely successful culture that resulted was a consequence of those genetic changes (although admittedly it's gone very wrong recently).

    Then again maybe it is true in which case best not get rid of Christianity just in case.
    , @Seamus Padraig

    If you don’t realise this, you really are an idiot.
     
    That's kind of harsh. German_reader was asking a serious and thoughtful question which deserved a serious and thoughtful response, not just an insult. Realize that a lot of people out there are going to have exactly the same question. If we don't have a decent answer for it, we're going to have a lot of trouble selling White identitarianism to White agnostics/atheists.
    , @annamaria
    No need to insult people. Btw, "German reader" is a shy zionist.
    Back to Christianity, this is a stake through the vampire hearts of the zionized US congresspeople of a supposedly 'Christian' persuasion:
    "Moscow, once a center of global Communism is rapidly transforming into a Vatican, or if you will, a Mecca of Conservatism. It is precisely here where the strongest redoubt that defends the image of mankind in its traditional Christian interpretation is now located."
  10. @Fluctuarius
    Kholmogorov and your very undertaker could be called passéists; AK is often dubbed a futurist.

    However, to quote Herzen of all people, "like the eagle on the Russian coat-of-arms, our heads were turned into different directions, but our beating heart was one and the same".

    One of the reasons for the USSR's ignominious destruction was an imbalance between tradition and modernity. The blind worship of technology, nuclear power, space flight, etc. did not do any good to keep the country from collapsing. All invocations of Gagarin, power plants, and scientific progress could not compete with the propaganda images of, say, Latvian or Ukranian rural plenty, or Georgian and Armenian ancient past.

    Likewise, the excessive anti-modernism of the Pochvennichestvo and the Pamyat Society failed to connect with the overwhelmingly urban Russian youth (hence the cliché image of a Russian nationalist as a rural retrograde with sauerkraut stuck in his beard).

    Therefore, we strive to keep our aesthetic idiosyncrasies from clouding our vision and work towards a common goal.

    So Adeptus Mechanicus is the future?

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Well, Kholmogorov was also the inventor of the Atomic Orthodoxy concept, so you're closer that you probably imagined. :)

    http://s016.radikal.ru/i334/1711/89/0c77e565af18.jpg
    , @Delinquent Snail
    There's a reason Musk wants to get to mars so bad.......
  11. @German_reader

    then it seems to me you have to accept that religion is either adaptive or at least was adaptive in the past
     
    That's certainly true, but could you consciously make yourself believe in something just because it's evolutionarily adaptive?
    I often find nationalists who enlist religion in the service of their national cause a bit cynical tbh, they seem unconcerned about the question of religious truth. Unless you really believe that Christ died for our sins and rose from the dead, what's the point in going on about the centrality of Christianity for your national identity? And in the modern world such belief is very hard for many people (with good reason imo).
    There are also inherent tensions between universalist religions and nationalism.
    Many identitarians/nationalists seem to believe they can just ignore those issues, but imo that's an illusion.

    but could you consciously make yourself believe in something just because it’s evolutionarily adaptive?

    i’m in the odd situation of being religious by nature but materialist by choice so it wouldn’t be hard for me personally but for someone who isn’t religious by nature i think the main point may be recognizing religion is (or at least was) adaptive could take away a lot of the hostility towards religion and make materialists more neutral towards it.

    There are also inherent tensions between universalist religions and nationalism.

    this is true – there are all sorts of practical problems with specific religions so I guess my point is more related to materialists becoming more neutral to the idea of religion as a thing in itself.

  12. @Verymuchalive
    " If Christianity goes, all of our culture goes with it." - TS Eliot
    If you don't realise this, you really are an idiot.

    I’m not convinced that’s true.

    I think Christianity applied selective pressure on Europeans which changed Euro genetics over time (specifically the creation of a cooperative-individualist mindset with a more universalist and less familial instinctive morality) and the extremely successful culture that resulted was a consequence of those genetic changes (although admittedly it’s gone very wrong recently).

    Then again maybe it is true in which case best not get rid of Christianity just in case.

    • Replies: @Singh
    Materially successful?

    Losing most of its territory within a generation to Islam then slowly being over taken by Turks is success..

    Europe is currently full of old ladies letting their daughters be raped by their Syrian boy toy।।

    Why? Violence is a sin goyim.
  13. Thank you for this translation. Fascinating. This reader hopes to see more.

  14. Sikh Gurus more political & successful.

    The call for self restraint & all this other stuff without actively seeking to create it ends up being fruitless.

    May go through all this writings one day

  15. @notanon
    I'm not convinced that's true.

    I think Christianity applied selective pressure on Europeans which changed Euro genetics over time (specifically the creation of a cooperative-individualist mindset with a more universalist and less familial instinctive morality) and the extremely successful culture that resulted was a consequence of those genetic changes (although admittedly it's gone very wrong recently).

    Then again maybe it is true in which case best not get rid of Christianity just in case.

    Materially successful?

    Losing most of its territory within a generation to Islam then slowly being over taken by Turks is success..

    Europe is currently full of old ladies letting their daughters be raped by their Syrian boy toy।।

    Why? Violence is a sin goyim.

    • Replies: @notanon

    Materially successful?
     
    yes obviously

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/bc/European_Empires.svg/1000px-European_Empires.svg.png

    like i said it went wrong since then - partly as a result of that material success i.e. creating the material means to fight two immensely destructive wars leading to a cultural crisis
  16. @German_reader

    Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.
     
    What's the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.
     
    What's there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn't deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint...but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism
     
    I really don't get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say "biologist" or "racist") can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as "a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism"...I just don't see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let's hope Martyanov will comment on this piece :-)

    Not specifically replying to your comment, but rather the discussion on him as whole.

    Solzhenitsyn was a talented artist.

    The members of the creative professions are a very important type of person, but usually not suitable, or even the opposite of what is suitable, for a sober political leadership, or even sensible political commentary on that leadership.

    With all respect to van Gogh, while he was undisputed expert on describing interplay of light on a sunflower, I would not imagine he would have had the most accurate views on political organization of his society, let alone would I follow his advice on military or economic development.

    The accurate situation with Solzhenitsyn – a very talented creative professional, but less than objective or factually accurate historian or commentator.

    That said,members of the creative professions can be useful for politics, in helping to develop national mythology, and in supporting nationalist movements. This is a very historically common situation – with people like Verdi in Italy, or Janacek in Czech Republic, having a key influence in development of national consciousness.

    • Replies: @iffen
    what is suitable, for a sober political leadership,

    Definition!

    And where in the fuck have you found it.
  17. Wow Sholzenitsyn is great. I can’t believe I put off reading him.

  18. Anyone know what Solzhenitsyn thought of Hitler, fascism and racial identity politics in general?

    • Replies: @Dmitry

    Anyone know what Solzhenitsyn thought of Hitler

     

    He was very anti-Hitler - as you would expect. He was a nationalist of Russian people, although of course he had a lot of accusations of being the opposite due to his political positions.

    fascism and racial identity politics in general?
     
    He was anti-fascist and generally anti-racist. But he was quite Russian nationalist, and also blames a lot the problems in Russia on presence and activities other nationalities (Jewish, Latvians, Georgians, etc)
  19. @Singh
    Materially successful?

    Losing most of its territory within a generation to Islam then slowly being over taken by Turks is success..

    Europe is currently full of old ladies letting their daughters be raped by their Syrian boy toy।।

    Why? Violence is a sin goyim.

    Materially successful?

    yes obviously

    like i said it went wrong since then – partly as a result of that material success i.e. creating the material means to fight two immensely destructive wars leading to a cultural crisis

  20. @German_reader

    Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.
     
    What's the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.
     
    What's there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn't deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint...but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism
     
    I really don't get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say "biologist" or "racist") can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as "a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism"...I just don't see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let's hope Martyanov will comment on this piece :-)

    I really don’t get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say “biologist” or “racist”) can

    Yes Karlin blog posts are a different genre. He usually tries to stay a bit grounded, and to follow – for example – the actual data and graphs for birthrates, rather than writing some fantasy piece about the meaning of birthrates. It’s more similar to what is written in Forbes.

    But it’s not bad to add some more ‘dreamer’ commentators like Kholmogorov to the blog. He provides variety and he is still a thoughtful commentator.

  21. @neutral
    Anyone know what Solzhenitsyn thought of Hitler, fascism and racial identity politics in general?

    Anyone know what Solzhenitsyn thought of Hitler

    He was very anti-Hitler – as you would expect. He was a nationalist of Russian people, although of course he had a lot of accusations of being the opposite due to his political positions.

    fascism and racial identity politics in general?

    He was anti-fascist and generally anti-racist. But he was quite Russian nationalist, and also blames a lot the problems in Russia on presence and activities other nationalities (Jewish, Latvians, Georgians, etc)

    • Replies: @German_reader

    But he was quite Russian nationalist, and also blames a lot the problems in Russia on presence and activities other nationalities (Jewish, Latvians, Georgians, etc)
     
    iirc he wrote an entire book about Jews in Russia which hasn't been properly translated into Western languages.
    Would be interesting to see a discussion of this (or just to learn what exactly his argument was).
  22. @Dmitry

    Anyone know what Solzhenitsyn thought of Hitler

     

    He was very anti-Hitler - as you would expect. He was a nationalist of Russian people, although of course he had a lot of accusations of being the opposite due to his political positions.

    fascism and racial identity politics in general?
     
    He was anti-fascist and generally anti-racist. But he was quite Russian nationalist, and also blames a lot the problems in Russia on presence and activities other nationalities (Jewish, Latvians, Georgians, etc)

    But he was quite Russian nationalist, and also blames a lot the problems in Russia on presence and activities other nationalities (Jewish, Latvians, Georgians, etc)

    iirc he wrote an entire book about Jews in Russia which hasn’t been properly translated into Western languages.
    Would be interesting to see a discussion of this (or just to learn what exactly his argument was).

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    In Russia, it was actually popular with the public and got media coverage for anti-Jewish polemic (this was 15 years ago), but it seems it was rejected by all professional historians who study this subject, and the areas it covered.

    As a person with limited reading time, if I want to read history books, or particularly the history of Jews in Russia (probably actually an interesting to read about), I would prefer to read first a historian. If I had unlimited reading time, I would read it from curiosity.

    I would imagine it is similar to the "Archipelago GULAG" book. I.e. well written, stylish, popular etc, - but with an artists', rather than historians, appreciation for facts. I've skimmed through the archipelago and it really seems like a compilation of folklore and anecdotes about the forced labour camps.
    , @Jayce
    There was an effort to crowdsource a translation into English a few years ago on 8ch's /pol/ and similar WN hangouts. I guess nothing ever came of it: perhaps they realized it was more nuanced than the neo-Nazi tract they were expecting and lost interest. Maybe Arktos will eventually get around to publishing it.
    , @for-the-record
    iirc he wrote an entire book about Jews in Russia which hasn’t been properly translated into Western languages.

    En français:

    https://www.amazon.fr/Deux-si%C3%A8cles-ensemble-1795-1995-r%C3%A9volution/dp/2213611580

    https://www.amazon.fr/Deux-si%C3%A8cles-ensemble-1917-1972-sovi%C3%A9tique/dp/2213615187/ref=pd_bxgy_14_2?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=89VFXNA582YM9NTAKBED

    auf Deutsch -- but perhaps only 1 volume:

    https://www.amazon.de/200-Jahre-zusammen-Juden-Sowjetunion/dp/3776650206
    , @anony-mouse
    I am very pleased that so many people here (again and again) don't like that that book hasn't been translated into English.

    After all if anyone really wanted to make a translation of that book they could.

    1/ Get the rights
    2/ Translate it
    3/ Get the book printed-there are a lot of book printers.
    4/ Get an ISBN # (not a necessity but it helps)
    5/ Sell it

    Of course most people here are folowers of the paleo Cantdo spirit. Complain, complain, complain. That's it
  23. @German_reader

    But he was quite Russian nationalist, and also blames a lot the problems in Russia on presence and activities other nationalities (Jewish, Latvians, Georgians, etc)
     
    iirc he wrote an entire book about Jews in Russia which hasn't been properly translated into Western languages.
    Would be interesting to see a discussion of this (or just to learn what exactly his argument was).

    In Russia, it was actually popular with the public and got media coverage for anti-Jewish polemic (this was 15 years ago), but it seems it was rejected by all professional historians who study this subject, and the areas it covered.

    As a person with limited reading time, if I want to read history books, or particularly the history of Jews in Russia (probably actually an interesting to read about), I would prefer to read first a historian. If I had unlimited reading time, I would read it from curiosity.

    I would imagine it is similar to the “Archipelago GULAG” book. I.e. well written, stylish, popular etc, – but with an artists’, rather than historians, appreciation for facts. I’ve skimmed through the archipelago and it really seems like a compilation of folklore and anecdotes about the forced labour camps.

  24. If I want to read history books, or particularly the history of Jews in Russia (probably actually an interesting to read about), I would prefer to read a historian.

    I would imagine it is similar to the “Archipelago GULAG” book. I.e. well written, stylish, popular etc, – but with an artists’, rather than historians, appreciation for facts.

    Sure, I didn’t claim the book has any merit (I literally have no idea).
    Your mention of Archipelago GULAG is also interesting…how factually accurate was that? I mean, Solzchenytsin spent some time in the camps, but quite a few Russian commenters here (admittedly probably without labor camp experience of their own) claim it’s exaggerated nonsense.
    Would be interesting to see a discussion of that and how Russians view his work.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    Well he has personal experience and that probably gives him much more emotional insight into it.

    But he had very limited access to the data and evidence, and not the professional training or skills of a historian, which usually involves a lot of skepticism about everything they are told.

    I've only skimmed the book though for a few minutes in the bookshop, so I am not the right person to ask about it. You probably already know more than me.
    , @melanf

    Would be interesting to see a discussion of that and how Russians view his work (Archipelago GULAG).
     
    As exaggerated nonsense.
    Of course Stalinist terror - the real thing, but when the number of victims of terror is inflated by two orders of magnitude - this is not a historical study but just propaganda nonsense. The praise of collaborationist WWII discreditied this book even more.
    , @Bennis Mardens
    He was in the camps for YEARS.
    The negative comments are hysterical.
    Not one person in this thread would make a pimple on
    Solzhenitsyn's ass.
  25. @German_reader

    But he was quite Russian nationalist, and also blames a lot the problems in Russia on presence and activities other nationalities (Jewish, Latvians, Georgians, etc)
     
    iirc he wrote an entire book about Jews in Russia which hasn't been properly translated into Western languages.
    Would be interesting to see a discussion of this (or just to learn what exactly his argument was).

    There was an effort to crowdsource a translation into English a few years ago on 8ch’s /pol/ and similar WN hangouts. I guess nothing ever came of it: perhaps they realized it was more nuanced than the neo-Nazi tract they were expecting and lost interest. Maybe Arktos will eventually get around to publishing it.

    • Replies: @notanon
    it was translated and i read it online at the time (some years ago now) but of course the people involved didn't have the copyright so it couldn't be sold legally - it was pretty eye opening, mostly data driven listing the percentage of politburu, camp kommandants, cheka etc who were Jewish.
    , @Dmitry
    From looking at reviews, it was not a racist, Nazi book, which contains antisemitic passages - it was just kind of amateur historical narrative about Jews.

    The issue the reviewers seem to have is, they think his agenda was trying exonerate and 'soften' events against Jews like pogroms, especially the role of the Russian government. So he condemns the pogroms, but then he tries to soften them (say the pogromists weren't abusing corpses, ect), and he is complaining about how they damage Russia's reputation, rather than caring about the Jewish victims who were killed. They say he tries to find mitigating excuses for everything.

    He has some chapters about the economic domination of Jewish industrialists in the 19th century Russia, and it's role in causing resentment. So sees that Jews have also contributed to the persecution.

    His conclusion is arguing about the 'equality of sinning' on both sides (i.e. against the narrative that only Russians persecutes Jews, but that there was going in both directions).
  26. @German_reader

    If I want to read history books, or particularly the history of Jews in Russia (probably actually an interesting to read about), I would prefer to read a historian.

    I would imagine it is similar to the “Archipelago GULAG” book. I.e. well written, stylish, popular etc, – but with an artists’, rather than historians, appreciation for facts.
     

    Sure, I didn't claim the book has any merit (I literally have no idea).
    Your mention of Archipelago GULAG is also interesting...how factually accurate was that? I mean, Solzchenytsin spent some time in the camps, but quite a few Russian commenters here (admittedly probably without labor camp experience of their own) claim it's exaggerated nonsense.
    Would be interesting to see a discussion of that and how Russians view his work.

    Well he has personal experience and that probably gives him much more emotional insight into it.

    But he had very limited access to the data and evidence, and not the professional training or skills of a historian, which usually involves a lot of skepticism about everything they are told.

    I’ve only skimmed the book though for a few minutes in the bookshop, so I am not the right person to ask about it. You probably already know more than me.

  27. @German_reader

    But he was quite Russian nationalist, and also blames a lot the problems in Russia on presence and activities other nationalities (Jewish, Latvians, Georgians, etc)
     
    iirc he wrote an entire book about Jews in Russia which hasn't been properly translated into Western languages.
    Would be interesting to see a discussion of this (or just to learn what exactly his argument was).

    iirc he wrote an entire book about Jews in Russia which hasn’t been properly translated into Western languages.

    En français:

    auf Deutsch — but perhaps only 1 volume:

    • Replies: @German_reader
    I wouldn't even need to buy it, my university library has it. Makes it all the stranger that there's no English translation. It can't possibly be that extreme.
    I don't think I'll read it though. Dmitry is probably right that one should stick to proper historians.
    , @whahae
    The first volume is available in German, too. I remember getting it from my local library.
  28. @Jayce
    There was an effort to crowdsource a translation into English a few years ago on 8ch's /pol/ and similar WN hangouts. I guess nothing ever came of it: perhaps they realized it was more nuanced than the neo-Nazi tract they were expecting and lost interest. Maybe Arktos will eventually get around to publishing it.

    it was translated and i read it online at the time (some years ago now) but of course the people involved didn’t have the copyright so it couldn’t be sold legally – it was pretty eye opening, mostly data driven listing the percentage of politburu, camp kommandants, cheka etc who were Jewish.

    • Replies: @annamaria
    "...mostly data driven listing the percentage of politburu, camp kommandants, cheka etc who were Jewish."
    --- Guess this is what made "Dmitri" think that Solzhenitsyn is "an artist rather than a historian." Hard to face the data that contradict the ideas of "eternal victimhood," "the most moral" and such. See this new bill by South Carolina legislature: https://www.thecollegefix.com/post/43923/
    http://www.datelinecarolina.org/story/35202460/anti-semitism-bill-faces-criticism-over-freedom-of-speech
  29. @for-the-record
    iirc he wrote an entire book about Jews in Russia which hasn’t been properly translated into Western languages.

    En français:

    https://www.amazon.fr/Deux-si%C3%A8cles-ensemble-1795-1995-r%C3%A9volution/dp/2213611580

    https://www.amazon.fr/Deux-si%C3%A8cles-ensemble-1917-1972-sovi%C3%A9tique/dp/2213615187/ref=pd_bxgy_14_2?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=89VFXNA582YM9NTAKBED

    auf Deutsch -- but perhaps only 1 volume:

    https://www.amazon.de/200-Jahre-zusammen-Juden-Sowjetunion/dp/3776650206

    I wouldn’t even need to buy it, my university library has it. Makes it all the stranger that there’s no English translation. It can’t possibly be that extreme.
    I don’t think I’ll read it though. Dmitry is probably right that one should stick to proper historians.

    • Replies: @Dmitry

    I wouldn’t even need to buy it, my university library has it. Makes it all the stranger that there’s no English translation. It can’t possibly be that extreme.
    I don’t think I’ll read it though. Dmitry is probably right that one should stick to proper historians
     
    It's probably one of those things, where you would read it if you were interested in Solzhenitsyn. If you're really into him, and passionate about him - it might be interesting to see his point of view, even controversial ones.
    , @for-the-record
    I don’t think I’ll read it though. Dmitry is probably right that one should stick to proper historians.

    Reviews were almost uniformly negative, not altogether surprisingly. An exception:

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2003/jan/25/russia.books

    By the way, Solzhenitsyn can be said to be a historian (even Wiki says so) -- lots of historians have no professional training. Like all historians, he has his own point of view.
  30. Solzhenitsyn’s last and greatest work, his valedictory 200 Years Together, remains yet unavailable in english-language published book form. Since it deals with the destructive role of organized Jewry in Russian history, in particular the Judeo-communist “revolution” and subsequent massacres of White Christians, this is – given the (((NY/London)) Jews’ current absolute control of book publishing/distribution in North America and England – not a surprise. There are, however, translations of the most important chapters at various netsites. Probably the best is @

  31. @German_reader
    I wouldn't even need to buy it, my university library has it. Makes it all the stranger that there's no English translation. It can't possibly be that extreme.
    I don't think I'll read it though. Dmitry is probably right that one should stick to proper historians.

    I wouldn’t even need to buy it, my university library has it. Makes it all the stranger that there’s no English translation. It can’t possibly be that extreme.
    I don’t think I’ll read it though. Dmitry is probably right that one should stick to proper historians

    It’s probably one of those things, where you would read it if you were interested in Solzhenitsyn. If you’re really into him, and passionate about him – it might be interesting to see his point of view, even controversial ones.

  32. @German_reader
    I wouldn't even need to buy it, my university library has it. Makes it all the stranger that there's no English translation. It can't possibly be that extreme.
    I don't think I'll read it though. Dmitry is probably right that one should stick to proper historians.

    I don’t think I’ll read it though. Dmitry is probably right that one should stick to proper historians.

    Reviews were almost uniformly negative, not altogether surprisingly. An exception:

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2003/jan/25/russia.books

    By the way, Solzhenitsyn can be said to be a historian (even Wiki says so) — lots of historians have no professional training. Like all historians, he has his own point of view.

  33. Anonymous [AKA "Mike Hart"] says:

    There’s a partially translated version of the 200 years together in english: https://twohundredyearstogether.wordpress.com

    Jordan Peterson gets uncomfortable when someone from the crowd asks about the book: https://youtube.com/watch?v=Idq0Y6szGK8
    “I can’t do it!”

  34. @Jayce
    There was an effort to crowdsource a translation into English a few years ago on 8ch's /pol/ and similar WN hangouts. I guess nothing ever came of it: perhaps they realized it was more nuanced than the neo-Nazi tract they were expecting and lost interest. Maybe Arktos will eventually get around to publishing it.

    From looking at reviews, it was not a racist, Nazi book, which contains antisemitic passages – it was just kind of amateur historical narrative about Jews.

    The issue the reviewers seem to have is, they think his agenda was trying exonerate and ‘soften’ events against Jews like pogroms, especially the role of the Russian government. So he condemns the pogroms, but then he tries to soften them (say the pogromists weren’t abusing corpses, ect), and he is complaining about how they damage Russia’s reputation, rather than caring about the Jewish victims who were killed. They say he tries to find mitigating excuses for everything.

    He has some chapters about the economic domination of Jewish industrialists in the 19th century Russia, and it’s role in causing resentment. So sees that Jews have also contributed to the persecution.

    His conclusion is arguing about the ‘equality of sinning’ on both sides (i.e. against the narrative that only Russians persecutes Jews, but that there was going in both directions).

  35. @German_reader

    But he was quite Russian nationalist, and also blames a lot the problems in Russia on presence and activities other nationalities (Jewish, Latvians, Georgians, etc)
     
    iirc he wrote an entire book about Jews in Russia which hasn't been properly translated into Western languages.
    Would be interesting to see a discussion of this (or just to learn what exactly his argument was).

    I am very pleased that so many people here (again and again) don’t like that that book hasn’t been translated into English.

    After all if anyone really wanted to make a translation of that book they could.

    1/ Get the rights
    2/ Translate it
    3/ Get the book printed-there are a lot of book printers.
    4/ Get an ISBN # (not a necessity but it helps)
    5/ Sell it

    Of course most people here are folowers of the paleo Cantdo spirit. Complain, complain, complain. That’s it

    • Replies: @notanon

    Of course most people here are folowers of the paleo Cantdo spirit. Complain, complain, complain. That’s it
     
    some dudes did translate it (or most of it) - you can read it at various places (at least you could some years ago when i read it)

    if accurate it made the case that the Bolshevik revolution was in reality a coalition of ethnic minorities who seized power in a coup and then slaughtered millions of the majority population.
    , @Daniel Chieh
    You say that as this is a thread literally of someone translating Russian thought into English.
  36. @anony-mouse
    I am very pleased that so many people here (again and again) don't like that that book hasn't been translated into English.

    After all if anyone really wanted to make a translation of that book they could.

    1/ Get the rights
    2/ Translate it
    3/ Get the book printed-there are a lot of book printers.
    4/ Get an ISBN # (not a necessity but it helps)
    5/ Sell it

    Of course most people here are folowers of the paleo Cantdo spirit. Complain, complain, complain. That's it

    Of course most people here are folowers of the paleo Cantdo spirit. Complain, complain, complain. That’s it

    some dudes did translate it (or most of it) – you can read it at various places (at least you could some years ago when i read it)

    if accurate it made the case that the Bolshevik revolution was in reality a coalition of ethnic minorities who seized power in a coup and then slaughtered millions of the majority population.

  37. Anonymous[350] • Disclaimer says:

    There is a partial translation of 200 Years Together from the French into English that was done by Roger Devlin, and a collaborative translation that was done in the last year or two by anonymous people online. I think this is a link to the latter:

    https://twohundredyearstogether.wordpress.com/

    I read the Devlin translation several years ago and recall it being quite enlightening re the jewish question. Most criticism from those of us who view the aforementioned issue as less of a question and more a problem, though, usually conclude that Solzhenitsyn was too diplomatic toward a people certain to not return the sentiment, but applaud the effort and getting information about this little-known jewish-led genocide out there in the first place.

  38. Mikhail says: • Website

    A not too distant Russia Insider piece rather crudely (IMO) said that Jews like trumping numbers showing their misery.

    Put another way:

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2015/09/21/getting-russia-wrong-again.html

    Excerpt –

    The following is expressed in Ivan Nechepurenko’s May 21, 2015 Moscow Times article “Shoigu At 60: The Man Who Would Be Russia’s King”: “‘No one with the surname Shoigu could ever be elected Russia’s president,’ said Stanislav Belkovsky, a prominent political analyst, referring to the defense minister’s origins from the remote Siberian republic Tuva, where animistic shamanism is practiced by the population along with Tibetan Buddhism. Unlike the Soviet Union, Russia is a nation state, where only people with a Russian surname can occupy the Kremlin,’ Belkovsky said in a phone interview.”

    Upon reading this, I was reminded of Stephen Cohen’s November 12, 2003 Moscow Times article “The Struggle For Russia”, which includes: “Democracy in Russia has been failing ever since Yeltsin made oligarchic privatization possible by destroying an elected parliament in 1993, and neither side is interested in truly reviving it: the oligarchs are zealous monopolists, not free-market reformers, and Western investors interested in Russia’s huge oil reserves have already indicated that they care about official guarantees of the contracts, not who signs them: Putin now controls elections sufficiently to get substantially the legislature he wants: and no one of Jewish origin, as are Khodorkovsky and most of the other oligarchs, could be elected president of Russia.”

    When considering his erudite commentary over the decades, I’d like to think that Cohen might be inclined to amend what he stated above. A whataboutism moment wryly observes the number of Jewish US presidents and vice presidents in the 200 plus year history of these positions, versus the number of post-Soviet Russian prime ministers of a known Jewish background.

    On the subject of Jewry in Russia and the overall state of ethno-religious relations in that country, there remains some closed-minded thinking, as evidenced in Julia Ioffe’s October 16, 2013 New Republic piece “Russians Still Love Pogroms”. Her tabloid screed is indicative of an inaccurate collective stereotyping.

    Ethno-religious intolerance is an unfortunate condition, which Russians haven’t monopolized. The past actions against Jews in Russia aren’t on par with the present circumstances in that nation. A second whataboutism considers African-Americans during slavery, contrasted with the current situation, which include some negative occurrences against that group. Another whataboutism observes that the unfortunate position of Jews in the Russian Empire wasn’t at the horrid level of what existed in Nazi Germany and as tragic to what the Armenians faced under Turkish rule.

    As a sharp contrast to Ioffe, the American PBS aired documentary “The Jewish Journey: America”, provides commentary by some Jewish scholars which contradict conventional perceptions. These contradicting comments include the:

    – overwhelming majority who left the Russian Empire, did so for economic reasons and not persecution (stated with the acknowledgement that there was discrimination and periodic violence against Jews in the Russian Empire);

    – “Pale of Settlement”, maintained a status quo of where Jews already lived, as opposed to seeing them expelled altogether (keeping in mind that there was a limited Jewish presence in Russia proper – the territory of today’s Russian federation)

    – the image of Cossacks beating up Jews is described in the documentary as a “literary construction” and “catch phrase literary mythology”.

    Regarding the last point, there was a 1648 uprising against Polish rule, that involved a large scale violence against Jews by rebelling Cossacks. This was on land which was not at the time a part of the Russian Empire. (Some of the territory in question had never become affiliated with the Russian Empire, covering the period after the Mongol subjugation of Rus). Within reason, these Cossacks saw the Jewish community as being generally supportive of Polish rule. This observation is made without meaning to excuse the anti-Jewish violence which occurred.

    The 1964 Broadway musical “Fiddler On The Roof” and the 1971 movie version of that play, has had an influence among those with some knowledge of the historical setting. Both are based on the works of Sholem Aleichem, who is formally recognized in Russia as a Russian literary figure. (He wrote in Hebrew, Yiddish and Russian.)

    Upon further review, it’d be interesting to see the differences between the play and movie, in relation to what Sholem Aleichem wrote. The Hollywood movie industry has been known to accentuate, or completely change some aspects related to history and novels. This is also true of some novels that have a historical setting.

    In the “Fiddler On The Roof” movie, the Russian government is portrayed as actively encouraging a pogrom in a distant Ukrainian village. This depiction contradicts other instances, where the anti-Jewish violence was initiated in various areas, without Russian government instigation. In these situations, the Russian government opposed that behavior because of the domestic instability it nurtured and the negative impression it gave abroad (especially in the West).

    Simultaneously in the Russian Empire, there were some (not all) local officials and higher ups, who exhibited anti-Jewish manner, which ranged from seemingly supporting the violence to opposing it. Despite these circumstances, around 650,000 Jews served in the Russian armed forces during World War I, according to “A Historical Atlas Of The Jewish People”. Even with the large exodus of Jews from the Russian Empire, that entity and (later) the Soviet Union maintained a good sized Jewish population.

    Ioffe’s New Republic piece oversimplifies the ethnic tensions exhibited in Russia over the past several years. This subject has involved:

    – criminal action on the part of some people from the Caucasus, who’ve migrated to the northwestern part of Russia;

    – to a degree, the reasoned belief that some local authorities have been bribed to look the other way at that activity;

    – extremists and some otherwise not so extreme individuals, taking vigilante action out of a frustrated disgust.

    Not too long ago, a Moscow situated British acquaintance saw a Russian intervening against someone of Caucasus background, who was roughing up a Tajik. This occurrence is mentioned without intending to stereotype ethnic relations in Russia. Rather, it’s to highlight the dubious spin in Ioffe’s piece.

    Most patriotic Russians don’t appear so hung up on a person’s ethno-religious background as Cohen and Belkovsky suggest in the referenced Moscow Times articles. For the most part, this category of Russians welcome non-Russians who sympathize with their views, unlike those Russians who slant to the preference of anti-Russian leaning elements – a matter related to Paul Robinson’s May 11, 2015 piece “The Self Hating Russian”. Many who identify themselves as being ethnic Russian, readily acknowledge (without shame) having either another ethnic identity, or more than two such backgrounds.

    Nechepurenko’s aforementioned May 21, 2015 Moscow Times article notes a poll among Russians, which is very favorable towards Shoigu.

  39. @German_reader

    Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.
     
    What's the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.
     
    What's there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn't deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint...but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism
     
    I really don't get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say "biologist" or "racist") can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as "a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism"...I just don't see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let's hope Martyanov will comment on this piece :-)

    [What’s the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?]

    You think there were lots of people who played a role like his? Then name some.

    • Replies: @German_reader

    You think there were lots of people who played a role like his?
     
    Probably not, but tbh I'm not informed in depth about Parvus or the role he plays in current (Russian) debates about the revolution.
    It was a genuine question, I didn't find that part of the article very clear if one doesn't know the background (which I don't).
  40. Absolutely shameful article. Glorifying a useful idiot of the CIA, whose literary works consist of boring lies is an amazing degradation.

    • LOL: YetAnotherAnon
    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    To be quite fair, Solzhenitsyn had some literary talent, which might have made him a great writer in Latvian or Estonian literature. However, in Russian literature he is about third-rate. As Dostoyevsky rightly said in “Demons”, it is hard to be a second-rate talent. As for lies, most of what he wrote was either lies, or the truth twisted beyond recognition. I am not sure about CIA, but he did publicly ask the US to nuke the USSR, which is even worse than being a CIA asset.
  41. @German_reader

    If I want to read history books, or particularly the history of Jews in Russia (probably actually an interesting to read about), I would prefer to read a historian.

    I would imagine it is similar to the “Archipelago GULAG” book. I.e. well written, stylish, popular etc, – but with an artists’, rather than historians, appreciation for facts.
     

    Sure, I didn't claim the book has any merit (I literally have no idea).
    Your mention of Archipelago GULAG is also interesting...how factually accurate was that? I mean, Solzchenytsin spent some time in the camps, but quite a few Russian commenters here (admittedly probably without labor camp experience of their own) claim it's exaggerated nonsense.
    Would be interesting to see a discussion of that and how Russians view his work.

    Would be interesting to see a discussion of that and how Russians view his work (Archipelago GULAG).

    As exaggerated nonsense.
    Of course Stalinist terror – the real thing, but when the number of victims of terror is inflated by two orders of magnitude – this is not a historical study but just propaganda nonsense. The praise of collaborationist WWII discreditied this book even more.

  42. @for-the-record
    iirc he wrote an entire book about Jews in Russia which hasn’t been properly translated into Western languages.

    En français:

    https://www.amazon.fr/Deux-si%C3%A8cles-ensemble-1795-1995-r%C3%A9volution/dp/2213611580

    https://www.amazon.fr/Deux-si%C3%A8cles-ensemble-1917-1972-sovi%C3%A9tique/dp/2213615187/ref=pd_bxgy_14_2?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=89VFXNA582YM9NTAKBED

    auf Deutsch -- but perhaps only 1 volume:

    https://www.amazon.de/200-Jahre-zusammen-Juden-Sowjetunion/dp/3776650206

    The first volume is available in German, too. I remember getting it from my local library.

  43. The collapse of Christian belief after WWI is an empirical fact. The severe undermining of European societies has resulted as the belief system that underpinned them has withered. One way that Christianity aided European societies was in dealing with hostile outgroups, whether Jews or Muslims. Without Christianity, it is doubtful if there would have been a Reconquista or the Liberation of Greece, for example.

    • Agree: Seamus Padraig
  44. I am very much looking forward to the rest of the article. The beginning is very promising.

    • Agree: iffen
  45. @Daniel Chieh
    So Adeptus Mechanicus is the future?

    Well, Kholmogorov was also the inventor of the Atomic Orthodoxy concept, so you’re closer that you probably imagined. 🙂

  46. Solzhenitsyn was a false prophet (actually- most, if not all prophets are false). His world-view is, contrary to the author’s claims, as irrelevant as Gandhi’s vision of India. It was dated even when it came out.

    Solzhenitsyn will, I think, endure as the author of two remarkable novels in classic, 19th C realist tradition.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    And the opinion of a talented artist, can often be surprisingly trite and just a collection of cliches, the moment you ask him something not related to his specialty (which in Solzhenitsyn's case was making characters and stories). On the other hand, these views might be held with a high degree of certainty, more characteristic of a real expert - but this certainty comes from the arrogance of the artist's personality, rather scholarly expertise.

    It reminds a little bit of nowadays, when people expect a good actor, to have more profound political views than a less artistically talented person. Really the two skills are quite unrelated, and in Solzhenitsyn's case, this is almost the case - as when a novelist/fabulist tries to write history books - that the strength of one contributes to the weakness of the other.
    , @YetAnotherAnon
    "the author of two remarkable novels"

    What's the one that isn't "August 1914"?
    , @iffen
    Thanks for documenting your irrelevancy.
  47. @German_reader

    Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.
     
    What's the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.
     
    What's there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn't deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint...but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism
     
    I really don't get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say "biologist" or "racist") can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as "a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism"...I just don't see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let's hope Martyanov will comment on this piece :-)

    What’s there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II?

    After reading Dominic Lieven’s biography of Nicholas II (which includes a fair amount of information about other important figures of the time, including Sergei Witte and Pyotr Stolypin), I came
    to better appreciate the difficulty of the situation in which Nicholas II found himself. It seems to me that the administration of the Russian Empire had become so complex that no monarch, however competent, could have been an effective autocrat. One way or another, major decision making power was going to have to be delegated. The ultimate question was how to do this without completely destroying Russian society. Even England, which was able to make the transition to a constitutional monarchy at an early and more opportune time, did not escape civil war. It’s not at all clear to me that a “competent winner” of a tsar would have succeeded in making the transition.

    • Replies: @German_reader

    One way or another, major decision making power was going to have to be delegated.
     
    At least in part he delegated it to the wrong kind of people I'd say. I know a lot of commenters here will disagree, but imo Russia's leadership in 1914 must take a major share of the responsibility for the outbreak of WW1 (Russia was the first great power to fully mobilize its armed forces, this was a crucial step in the escalation from a limited Balkans war to a general European war and led directly to the German ultimatum and declaration of war). There was a strong war party in Russian elites. Maybe it was beyond Nicholas' power to control or restrain them, but given how it all turned out for Russia and the rest of Europe, his political skills and judgement seem rather deficient to me.
    , @Seraphim
    Now that the Commemoration of 100 years of the murder of Czar Nicholas and his family approaches and hundreds of thousands of pilgrims are expected in Yekaterinburg, you will see an increase in denunciations of the 'incompetence, weakness, bloodthirstiness' and what you have it and of justifications for his 'deserved' demise.
  48. @Bardon Kaldian
    Solzhenitsyn was a false prophet (actually- most, if not all prophets are false). His world-view is, contrary to the author's claims, as irrelevant as Gandhi's vision of India. It was dated even when it came out.

    Solzhenitsyn will, I think, endure as the author of two remarkable novels in classic, 19th C realist tradition.

    And the opinion of a talented artist, can often be surprisingly trite and just a collection of cliches, the moment you ask him something not related to his specialty (which in Solzhenitsyn’s case was making characters and stories). On the other hand, these views might be held with a high degree of certainty, more characteristic of a real expert – but this certainty comes from the arrogance of the artist’s personality, rather scholarly expertise.

    It reminds a little bit of nowadays, when people expect a good actor, to have more profound political views than a less artistically talented person. Really the two skills are quite unrelated, and in Solzhenitsyn’s case, this is almost the case – as when a novelist/fabulist tries to write history books – that the strength of one contributes to the weakness of the other.

    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian
    I think it all has begun with 18th C France, Voltaire & Rousseau. Voltaire was seen as the conscience of his generation (the Calas case), while Rousseau was seen as the prophet by Jacobins. Later, Zola was a sort of refurbished Voltaire (Dreyfus affair), and Tolstoy was acclaimed as universal moralist & prophet of non-violence.

    The last of these preachers posing as prophets was J.P. Sartre.

    So- why writers, and not scientists or visual artists or real philosophers?

    I guess because written word has become the dominant medium in past 200 or so years; visual arts & music (except Wagnerian interlude) have dimmed; exact sciences are either incomprehensible to the wider audience or simply dull.

    Just, since written word is sinking in front of our eyes, perhaps future "prophets" will be celebrities, airheads like Kardashians & similar refuse...
    , @AP
    I disagree with you here a little, because a great author is not merely a great stylist but also someone capable of exploring or revealing real truths. This makes such authors potential prophets.
    Dostoyevsky is often regarded as the worlds' greatest novelist but in terms of pure style he is fairly mediocre. An author of great literature is in essence completely different from a great actor or brilliant musician.
    , @iffen
    And the opinion of a talented artist

    I think that you are missing the point or the value. Artists, almost by definition, have a different perspective. You need to look at their description or work to gain a different, could I say, more complete understanding.
    , @annamaria
    You obviously have a grudge against Solzhenitsyn. First, you made a confession that you had not read his book, then you immediately proceeded to slander the DOCUMENTARY.
    Unlike you, Alexander Solzhenitsyn has open access to the state archives. Unlike your Jewish dislike of everything Russian, Alexander Solzhenitsyn was devoted to Russia unconditionally... This is why he was sent to GULAG. -- For being honest.
    What is your degree of courage, "Dmitry?" -- Enough to spill your doubts (uninformed) about the late author?
  49. Excellent! I once wondered why his works so resonated with and changed me. Decades later, as an internal Christian exile in one of the worlds he critiqued, I now understand why the propition. I also read Shafarevitvh’s book on Chiliastic Socialism, The Socialist Phenomenon I think it was titled, and reviewed it for a publication where I was an editor.

  50. @5371
    [What’s the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?]

    You think there were lots of people who played a role like his? Then name some.

    You think there were lots of people who played a role like his?

    Probably not, but tbh I’m not informed in depth about Parvus or the role he plays in current (Russian) debates about the revolution.
    It was a genuine question, I didn’t find that part of the article very clear if one doesn’t know the background (which I don’t).

  51. @Dmitry
    And the opinion of a talented artist, can often be surprisingly trite and just a collection of cliches, the moment you ask him something not related to his specialty (which in Solzhenitsyn's case was making characters and stories). On the other hand, these views might be held with a high degree of certainty, more characteristic of a real expert - but this certainty comes from the arrogance of the artist's personality, rather scholarly expertise.

    It reminds a little bit of nowadays, when people expect a good actor, to have more profound political views than a less artistically talented person. Really the two skills are quite unrelated, and in Solzhenitsyn's case, this is almost the case - as when a novelist/fabulist tries to write history books - that the strength of one contributes to the weakness of the other.

    I think it all has begun with 18th C France, Voltaire & Rousseau. Voltaire was seen as the conscience of his generation (the Calas case), while Rousseau was seen as the prophet by Jacobins. Later, Zola was a sort of refurbished Voltaire (Dreyfus affair), and Tolstoy was acclaimed as universal moralist & prophet of non-violence.

    The last of these preachers posing as prophets was J.P. Sartre.

    So- why writers, and not scientists or visual artists or real philosophers?

    I guess because written word has become the dominant medium in past 200 or so years; visual arts & music (except Wagnerian interlude) have dimmed; exact sciences are either incomprehensible to the wider audience or simply dull.

    Just, since written word is sinking in front of our eyes, perhaps future “prophets” will be celebrities, airheads like Kardashians & similar refuse…

    • Replies: @Dmitry

    I think it all has begun with 18th C France, Voltaire & Rousseau. Voltaire was seen as the conscience of his generation (the Calas case), while Rousseau was seen as the prophet by Jacobins. Later, Zola was a sort of refurbished Voltaire (Dreyfus affair), and Tolstoy was acclaimed as universal moralist & prophet of non-violence.

    The last of these preachers posing as prophets was J.P. Sartre.

    So- why writers, and not scientists or visual artists or real philosophers?

    I guess because written word has become the dominant medium in past 200 or so years; visual arts & music (except Wagnerian interlude) have dimmed; exact sciences are either incomprehensible to the wider audience or simply dull.

    Just, since written word is sinking in front of our eyes, perhaps future “prophets” will be celebrities, airheads like Kardashians & similar refuse…
     

    Yes Sartre was such a character in France. But Sartre was also a philosopher, and had analytic and intellectual abilities. He was not quite equivalent to the pure storyteller and artist/dreamer/fabulist, writing about affairs which require opposite skillset.

    The point overall is very interesting. I think we already see the movement away from novelists, and to actors as being the most prestigious 'voice' in politics.

    Although you can see still that e.g. J.K. Rowling is now playing an important role in political commentary.

  52. @The Big Red Scary

    What’s there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II?
     
    After reading Dominic Lieven's biography of Nicholas II (which includes a fair amount of information about other important figures of the time, including Sergei Witte and Pyotr Stolypin), I came
    to better appreciate the difficulty of the situation in which Nicholas II found himself. It seems to me that the administration of the Russian Empire had become so complex that no monarch, however competent, could have been an effective autocrat. One way or another, major decision making power was going to have to be delegated. The ultimate question was how to do this without completely destroying Russian society. Even England, which was able to make the transition to a constitutional monarchy at an early and more opportune time, did not escape civil war. It's not at all clear to me that a "competent winner" of a tsar would have succeeded in making the transition.

    One way or another, major decision making power was going to have to be delegated.

    At least in part he delegated it to the wrong kind of people I’d say. I know a lot of commenters here will disagree, but imo Russia’s leadership in 1914 must take a major share of the responsibility for the outbreak of WW1 (Russia was the first great power to fully mobilize its armed forces, this was a crucial step in the escalation from a limited Balkans war to a general European war and led directly to the German ultimatum and declaration of war). There was a strong war party in Russian elites. Maybe it was beyond Nicholas’ power to control or restrain them, but given how it all turned out for Russia and the rest of Europe, his political skills and judgement seem rather deficient to me.

    • Replies: @neutral
    France and UK were the two that wanted the war the most, their status quo was being threatened and they wanted a war the most, so they take most of the blame for the disaster.

    This is no different to how the USA is the most belligerent regime in the world today.
    , @AP

    At least in part he delegated it to the wrong kind of people I’d say.
     
    Not in all cases. Stolypin was a winner.

    But getting Russia into a World War was an incredible blunder and terminally stupid timing. It would be like China or Russia stumbling into a war against the USA in 2005 or something, rather than in 2025 or later if war were eventually inevitable (hopefully it is not), if nukes did not exist.
    , @The Big Red Scary

    I know a lot of commenters here will disagree, but imo Russia’s leadership in 1914 must take a major share of the responsibility for the outbreak of WW1
     
    I don't know enough to have an opinion, but would be interested in hearing that of others.

    For what it's worth, the impression that I got from reading Lieven's biography of him is that liberal politicians were much more keen on a war with Germany than was Nicholas himself, and ultimately it was a deal cut between the military and the liberals that forced Nicholas's abdication. In hindsight, I suspect that if Nicholas is at fault for not stopping the war, then ultimately he would have to be at fault for not crushing the revolution of 1905 and for not avoiding war with Japan in 1904 (for example, he could have accepted the Japanese offer of Manchuria in return for Korea). Unlike the war with Germany, my impression from reading Lieven is that Nicholas was rather enthusiastic about war with Japan.

    Another thing that struck me reading Lieven's book is how similar some of modern Russia's problems are to those of the late empire, in particular the need to catch up economically or be crushed and to find some way to distribute and transfer power without leading to chaos.

    Anyhow, I'm grateful to be a simple person without responsibility for such momentous decisions.
  53. @Bardon Kaldian
    I think it all has begun with 18th C France, Voltaire & Rousseau. Voltaire was seen as the conscience of his generation (the Calas case), while Rousseau was seen as the prophet by Jacobins. Later, Zola was a sort of refurbished Voltaire (Dreyfus affair), and Tolstoy was acclaimed as universal moralist & prophet of non-violence.

    The last of these preachers posing as prophets was J.P. Sartre.

    So- why writers, and not scientists or visual artists or real philosophers?

    I guess because written word has become the dominant medium in past 200 or so years; visual arts & music (except Wagnerian interlude) have dimmed; exact sciences are either incomprehensible to the wider audience or simply dull.

    Just, since written word is sinking in front of our eyes, perhaps future "prophets" will be celebrities, airheads like Kardashians & similar refuse...

    I think it all has begun with 18th C France, Voltaire & Rousseau. Voltaire was seen as the conscience of his generation (the Calas case), while Rousseau was seen as the prophet by Jacobins. Later, Zola was a sort of refurbished Voltaire (Dreyfus affair), and Tolstoy was acclaimed as universal moralist & prophet of non-violence.

    The last of these preachers posing as prophets was J.P. Sartre.

    So- why writers, and not scientists or visual artists or real philosophers?

    I guess because written word has become the dominant medium in past 200 or so years; visual arts & music (except Wagnerian interlude) have dimmed; exact sciences are either incomprehensible to the wider audience or simply dull.

    Just, since written word is sinking in front of our eyes, perhaps future “prophets” will be celebrities, airheads like Kardashians & similar refuse…

    Yes Sartre was such a character in France. But Sartre was also a philosopher, and had analytic and intellectual abilities. He was not quite equivalent to the pure storyteller and artist/dreamer/fabulist, writing about affairs which require opposite skillset.

    The point overall is very interesting. I think we already see the movement away from novelists, and to actors as being the most prestigious ‘voice’ in politics.

    Although you can see still that e.g. J.K. Rowling is now playing an important role in political commentary.

    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian
    Sartre was more an "intellectual" than philosopher. I tried to read his "Being & Nothingness" and gave up. Some British writer opined: the top of Sartre and T.S. Eliot is actually a bottom of a German theologian.

    This may sound like nothing more than wit, just.... Sartre's adventures with Maoism & other mental excursions seem now not only antiquated, but clearly lunatic. American critic Harold Bloom thought that the eminence of Sartre's opus was destroyed by 60s Counter-culture & I happen to agree, at least to a degree. Highly politicized faux-Marxist thought & this all existential lifestyle seem a thing safely buried in the past.

    J.K. Rowling is a celebrity novelist. More celebrity than novelist.

    Old Hollywood types (Mae West, Bogart, Spencer Tracy, Gary Cooper, Clara Bow, Clark Gable,..) mostly refrained from pontificating on politics & life in the universe. Unlike De Niro, Leo Di Caprio, Clooney, Streep, .. who pretend to have an informed opinion about, well, everything.

    In past 5000 years of human civilization, this is the first time clowns & other entertainers pose as sages & oracles.
  54. @German_reader

    One way or another, major decision making power was going to have to be delegated.
     
    At least in part he delegated it to the wrong kind of people I'd say. I know a lot of commenters here will disagree, but imo Russia's leadership in 1914 must take a major share of the responsibility for the outbreak of WW1 (Russia was the first great power to fully mobilize its armed forces, this was a crucial step in the escalation from a limited Balkans war to a general European war and led directly to the German ultimatum and declaration of war). There was a strong war party in Russian elites. Maybe it was beyond Nicholas' power to control or restrain them, but given how it all turned out for Russia and the rest of Europe, his political skills and judgement seem rather deficient to me.

    France and UK were the two that wanted the war the most, their status quo was being threatened and they wanted a war the most, so they take most of the blame for the disaster.

    This is no different to how the USA is the most belligerent regime in the world today.

    • Replies: @German_reader
    France and Britain weren't without some responsibility either (none of the great powers was imo, though Russia and Germany were probably the main culprits), but it seems to me there was less enthusiasm for war among elites and educated classes there. The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes...no sane Englishman would have cared about a Balkans war between Austria-Hungary and Serbia. Whereas there were plenty of panslavist nutters in Russia who thought their national honour mandated going to war for Serbia (which was just an unimportant and rather nasty bandit state).
  55. @neutral
    France and UK were the two that wanted the war the most, their status quo was being threatened and they wanted a war the most, so they take most of the blame for the disaster.

    This is no different to how the USA is the most belligerent regime in the world today.

    France and Britain weren’t without some responsibility either (none of the great powers was imo, though Russia and Germany were probably the main culprits), but it seems to me there was less enthusiasm for war among elites and educated classes there. The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes…no sane Englishman would have cared about a Balkans war between Austria-Hungary and Serbia. Whereas there were plenty of panslavist nutters in Russia who thought their national honour mandated going to war for Serbia (which was just an unimportant and rather nasty bandit state).

    • Replies: @neutral
    The "motivation" for Britain regarding Belgium was propaganda produced by people in Britain, things like mass rape and killing babies was used to for propaganda, it seems their penchant to produce propaganda to agitate for war has not stopped.
    , @AP

    The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes
     
    This was largely media-manufactured outrage. The real reason Britain went to war is because a German victory over Russia and France would have created a continental superpower that would completely eclipse Britain. Had the war been limited to Austria-Hungary punishing the Serb bandit-state Britain would never have been involved.
    , @Joe Levantine
    "The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes"
    The British were highly motivated to go to war against Germany because of the latter' s commercial success that was clearly putting British products within and outside the British Empire at the defensive. Tsar Nicholas was a person of limited capacities for statesmanship who had every reason to stay out of the war as the Stolypin reforms were getting Russia on the right path of economic revival despite the latter' s assassination by the Jewish son of one of the wealthiest traders in Saint Petersburg. France was highly motivated by a desire for revenge for the loss of Alsace Lorraine. The Germans were too confident of the Schlieffen plan but had no choice but to resist the pincer movement around them by Russia and France. All were the victims of the international bankers who created the Federal Reserve in 1913 to be able to finance the coming war through fiat money.
  56. @Dmitry

    I think it all has begun with 18th C France, Voltaire & Rousseau. Voltaire was seen as the conscience of his generation (the Calas case), while Rousseau was seen as the prophet by Jacobins. Later, Zola was a sort of refurbished Voltaire (Dreyfus affair), and Tolstoy was acclaimed as universal moralist & prophet of non-violence.

    The last of these preachers posing as prophets was J.P. Sartre.

    So- why writers, and not scientists or visual artists or real philosophers?

    I guess because written word has become the dominant medium in past 200 or so years; visual arts & music (except Wagnerian interlude) have dimmed; exact sciences are either incomprehensible to the wider audience or simply dull.

    Just, since written word is sinking in front of our eyes, perhaps future “prophets” will be celebrities, airheads like Kardashians & similar refuse…
     

    Yes Sartre was such a character in France. But Sartre was also a philosopher, and had analytic and intellectual abilities. He was not quite equivalent to the pure storyteller and artist/dreamer/fabulist, writing about affairs which require opposite skillset.

    The point overall is very interesting. I think we already see the movement away from novelists, and to actors as being the most prestigious 'voice' in politics.

    Although you can see still that e.g. J.K. Rowling is now playing an important role in political commentary.

    Sartre was more an “intellectual” than philosopher. I tried to read his “Being & Nothingness” and gave up. Some British writer opined: the top of Sartre and T.S. Eliot is actually a bottom of a German theologian.

    This may sound like nothing more than wit, just…. Sartre’s adventures with Maoism & other mental excursions seem now not only antiquated, but clearly lunatic. American critic Harold Bloom thought that the eminence of Sartre’s opus was destroyed by 60s Counter-culture & I happen to agree, at least to a degree. Highly politicized faux-Marxist thought & this all existential lifestyle seem a thing safely buried in the past.

    J.K. Rowling is a celebrity novelist. More celebrity than novelist.

    Old Hollywood types (Mae West, Bogart, Spencer Tracy, Gary Cooper, Clara Bow, Clark Gable,..) mostly refrained from pontificating on politics & life in the universe. Unlike De Niro, Leo Di Caprio, Clooney, Streep, .. who pretend to have an informed opinion about, well, everything.

    In past 5000 years of human civilization, this is the first time clowns & other entertainers pose as sages & oracles.

    • Replies: @iffen
    More celebrity than novelist.

    LOL
    , @Andrei Martyanov

    Sartre was more an “intellectual” than philosopher. I tried to read his “Being & Nothingness”
     
    Yeah, reading Nekrasov can radiate one's brain into the raisin. After, however, Age of Consent Letter I only experience desire to wash hands after touching anything by these "intellectual" characters. Pedophilia, of course, being a very very "intellectual" thing. It is the same as "intellectual signalling" by reading Lolita and praising it as a remarkable work of literature and I read it in both Russian and English. I guess I am not "sophisticated" enough.

    Old Hollywood types (Mae West, Bogart, Spencer Tracy, Gary Cooper, Clara Bow, Clark Gable,..) mostly refrained from pontificating on politics & life in the universe. Unlike De Niro, Leo Di Caprio, Clooney, Streep, .. who pretend to have an informed opinion about, well, everything.

    In past 5000 years of human civilization, this is the first time clowns & other entertainers pose as sages & oracles.
     
    Today we have journalists and philosophers planning military operations, we have sociologists and political scientists "analyzing" target acquisition protocols in cruise missiles, in the end, we have cashier machine operators consulting on military-intelligence matters and all this is a full blown mainstream. So, why not ignorant uneducated "stars" and other artsy types have their opinion (promoted no less by media) on such issues as atmospheric sciences or aerospace? It is well-know fact that in Hollywood, in the breaks between shooting movies pretending to be someone else and socializing in the "exclusive" clubs, all Hollywood stars dedicate all their efforts in studying Theory of Operations, differential equations and radio-electronics. Somehow, I think, we can be grateful to all those "intellectuals" such as Sartre for such state of the affairs.
  57. @German_reader
    France and Britain weren't without some responsibility either (none of the great powers was imo, though Russia and Germany were probably the main culprits), but it seems to me there was less enthusiasm for war among elites and educated classes there. The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes...no sane Englishman would have cared about a Balkans war between Austria-Hungary and Serbia. Whereas there were plenty of panslavist nutters in Russia who thought their national honour mandated going to war for Serbia (which was just an unimportant and rather nasty bandit state).

    The “motivation” for Britain regarding Belgium was propaganda produced by people in Britain, things like mass rape and killing babies was used to for propaganda, it seems their penchant to produce propaganda to agitate for war has not stopped.

    • Replies: @German_reader
    I know, the real motive for Britain entering the war was of course geopolitical, Grey and his Foreign office clique were anti-German in any case. And British propaganda was pretty grotesque (though unfortunately German forces really did commit war crimes in Belgium).
    But we probably shouldn't get too off-topic...though Sholzhenytsin did write a novel about August 1914 (I once tried reading it, but didn't get far...).
    , @notanon
    true - the western elites can't get their native population to go kill people just for fun and loot like they could in the old days so now they need to trick them into believing they are saving babies - weird huh.
  58. @neutral
    The "motivation" for Britain regarding Belgium was propaganda produced by people in Britain, things like mass rape and killing babies was used to for propaganda, it seems their penchant to produce propaganda to agitate for war has not stopped.

    I know, the real motive for Britain entering the war was of course geopolitical, Grey and his Foreign office clique were anti-German in any case. And British propaganda was pretty grotesque (though unfortunately German forces really did commit war crimes in Belgium).
    But we probably shouldn’t get too off-topic…though Sholzhenytsin did write a novel about August 1914 (I once tried reading it, but didn’t get far…).

  59. AP says:
    @German_reader

    One way or another, major decision making power was going to have to be delegated.
     
    At least in part he delegated it to the wrong kind of people I'd say. I know a lot of commenters here will disagree, but imo Russia's leadership in 1914 must take a major share of the responsibility for the outbreak of WW1 (Russia was the first great power to fully mobilize its armed forces, this was a crucial step in the escalation from a limited Balkans war to a general European war and led directly to the German ultimatum and declaration of war). There was a strong war party in Russian elites. Maybe it was beyond Nicholas' power to control or restrain them, but given how it all turned out for Russia and the rest of Europe, his political skills and judgement seem rather deficient to me.

    At least in part he delegated it to the wrong kind of people I’d say.

    Not in all cases. Stolypin was a winner.

    But getting Russia into a World War was an incredible blunder and terminally stupid timing. It would be like China or Russia stumbling into a war against the USA in 2005 or something, rather than in 2025 or later if war were eventually inevitable (hopefully it is not), if nukes did not exist.

    • Replies: @German_reader

    Stolypin was a winner.
     
    From what I've read (far too little admittedly), you're right, it's very unfortunate that Stolypin (who seems to have been a sensible reformer) was murdered. Maybe things would have turned out differently if that hadn't happened.
    In any case, I didn't want to put down Nicholas too much...on a personal level he was probably a decent man, certainly didn't deserve his horrible end. I just don't quite see how his political record can be "appreciated" (his dignity in facing death may be a different matter...but that's more of a suffering virtue than the kind of active skill necessary for politicians).
  60. AP says:
    @German_reader
    France and Britain weren't without some responsibility either (none of the great powers was imo, though Russia and Germany were probably the main culprits), but it seems to me there was less enthusiasm for war among elites and educated classes there. The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes...no sane Englishman would have cared about a Balkans war between Austria-Hungary and Serbia. Whereas there were plenty of panslavist nutters in Russia who thought their national honour mandated going to war for Serbia (which was just an unimportant and rather nasty bandit state).

    The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes

    This was largely media-manufactured outrage. The real reason Britain went to war is because a German victory over Russia and France would have created a continental superpower that would completely eclipse Britain. Had the war been limited to Austria-Hungary punishing the Serb bandit-state Britain would never have been involved.

    • Replies: @iffen
    The real reason Britain went to war is because a German victory over Russia and France would have created a continental superpower that would completely eclipse Britain.

    I've seen this many times before. Can we know that it is accurate?
  61. @AP

    At least in part he delegated it to the wrong kind of people I’d say.
     
    Not in all cases. Stolypin was a winner.

    But getting Russia into a World War was an incredible blunder and terminally stupid timing. It would be like China or Russia stumbling into a war against the USA in 2005 or something, rather than in 2025 or later if war were eventually inevitable (hopefully it is not), if nukes did not exist.

    Stolypin was a winner.

    From what I’ve read (far too little admittedly), you’re right, it’s very unfortunate that Stolypin (who seems to have been a sensible reformer) was murdered. Maybe things would have turned out differently if that hadn’t happened.
    In any case, I didn’t want to put down Nicholas too much…on a personal level he was probably a decent man, certainly didn’t deserve his horrible end. I just don’t quite see how his political record can be “appreciated” (his dignity in facing death may be a different matter…but that’s more of a suffering virtue than the kind of active skill necessary for politicians).

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    You're German.

    If Stolypin's vision had persisted Russia might today have the power of the United States.

    Instead for the entire past century Russia has generally been no more powerful than Germany, with the exception of 1944-1980 or so. This is a despite Germany suffering from many disasters in the past century such as losing two world wars.

    You should be grateful that things did not turn out differently.

    , @inertial
    Kholmogorov is a big fan of Nicholas as a statesman and has a lot to say about it. He makes a fairly good case. Hopefully it will get translated one day.
  62. AP says:
    @Dmitry
    And the opinion of a talented artist, can often be surprisingly trite and just a collection of cliches, the moment you ask him something not related to his specialty (which in Solzhenitsyn's case was making characters and stories). On the other hand, these views might be held with a high degree of certainty, more characteristic of a real expert - but this certainty comes from the arrogance of the artist's personality, rather scholarly expertise.

    It reminds a little bit of nowadays, when people expect a good actor, to have more profound political views than a less artistically talented person. Really the two skills are quite unrelated, and in Solzhenitsyn's case, this is almost the case - as when a novelist/fabulist tries to write history books - that the strength of one contributes to the weakness of the other.

    I disagree with you here a little, because a great author is not merely a great stylist but also someone capable of exploring or revealing real truths. This makes such authors potential prophets.
    Dostoyevsky is often regarded as the worlds’ greatest novelist but in terms of pure style he is fairly mediocre. An author of great literature is in essence completely different from a great actor or brilliant musician.

    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian
    Dostoevsky is one of the few supreme writers, along with Homer, Aeschylus, Dante, Shakespeare & some others. Not more than 7-10 people belong to that category (great writers like Flaubert, Conrad, Faulkner,.. are more numerous).

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.
    , @Dmitry

    An author of great literature is in essence completely different from a great actor or brilliant musician.
     
    Why? The novelist skill has a lot to do with half-closing the eyes, and allowing yourself to dream and to fantasize, and to make-believe. Although there is an analytical and organization component, involved in the composition of the story.

    Acting profession is a similar behaviour at the basis, that allows the person to inhabit another character or setting. But there is little need for the analytical component (as this is organized by the director or writer).

    As for novelists writing history. Here there are directly contradicting personalities and skills - and a fabulist, is no substitute for a professionally trained historian, as history is more science than art.

    As for all these talented people (whether actors, or even scientists and mathematicians) - they are often extremely mediocre when they were working outside the area of their talent which made them famous.

    Generally it is a case of 'free-riding'. Where the person who built a fame in one area, uses this to trick people into thinking they are expert in some other area (in which they have no real ability).

    Sadly, this is very common with artists, who commonly have narcissistic personality disorder, and believe themselves to be a universal genius.

    People know this where it is directly impacting them, and you would not want J.K. Rowling - for all her imaginative genius - to perform surgery on you, or trust to walk on a bridge she built.

    But somehow when it comes to history, or economics, or even political science - which are almost equally unconnected to story invention - people are still impressed by their fame.

    When you find someone with ability in more than one area, it is particularly surprising, but it is not the normal state, and particularly not the normal state for artists.
  63. @German_reader

    One way or another, major decision making power was going to have to be delegated.
     
    At least in part he delegated it to the wrong kind of people I'd say. I know a lot of commenters here will disagree, but imo Russia's leadership in 1914 must take a major share of the responsibility for the outbreak of WW1 (Russia was the first great power to fully mobilize its armed forces, this was a crucial step in the escalation from a limited Balkans war to a general European war and led directly to the German ultimatum and declaration of war). There was a strong war party in Russian elites. Maybe it was beyond Nicholas' power to control or restrain them, but given how it all turned out for Russia and the rest of Europe, his political skills and judgement seem rather deficient to me.

    I know a lot of commenters here will disagree, but imo Russia’s leadership in 1914 must take a major share of the responsibility for the outbreak of WW1

    I don’t know enough to have an opinion, but would be interested in hearing that of others.

    For what it’s worth, the impression that I got from reading Lieven’s biography of him is that liberal politicians were much more keen on a war with Germany than was Nicholas himself, and ultimately it was a deal cut between the military and the liberals that forced Nicholas’s abdication. In hindsight, I suspect that if Nicholas is at fault for not stopping the war, then ultimately he would have to be at fault for not crushing the revolution of 1905 and for not avoiding war with Japan in 1904 (for example, he could have accepted the Japanese offer of Manchuria in return for Korea). Unlike the war with Germany, my impression from reading Lieven is that Nicholas was rather enthusiastic about war with Japan.

    Another thing that struck me reading Lieven’s book is how similar some of modern Russia’s problems are to those of the late empire, in particular the need to catch up economically or be crushed and to find some way to distribute and transfer power without leading to chaos.

    Anyhow, I’m grateful to be a simple person without responsibility for such momentous decisions.

    • Replies: @notanon

    I don’t know enough to have an opinion, but would be interested in hearing that of others.
     
    I read a lot about this many years ago but don't remember enough to have an opinion other than if you want to know who to blame for something but don't know enough to have an opinion then nine times out of ten your safest bet is it was probably the banks.
  64. @AP
    I disagree with you here a little, because a great author is not merely a great stylist but also someone capable of exploring or revealing real truths. This makes such authors potential prophets.
    Dostoyevsky is often regarded as the worlds' greatest novelist but in terms of pure style he is fairly mediocre. An author of great literature is in essence completely different from a great actor or brilliant musician.

    Dostoevsky is one of the few supreme writers, along with Homer, Aeschylus, Dante, Shakespeare & some others. Not more than 7-10 people belong to that category (great writers like Flaubert, Conrad, Faulkner,.. are more numerous).

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.

    • Replies: @melanf

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.
     
    Dostoevsky was (in a whole) quite adequate. In this regard, he was the complete opposite of Leo Tolstoy.
    , @Seamus Day

    Dostoevsky is one of the few supreme writers, along with Homer, Aeschylus, Dante, Shakespeare & some others. Not more than 7-10 people belong to that category (great writers like Flaubert, Conrad, Faulkner,.. are more numerous).

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.
     
    One of my favorite writers, Boston College philosophy professor Peter Kreeft, a conservative Catholic (convert from Dutch Reformed) has always said that the the greatest novel ever written is without question The Brothers Karamazov. He has maintained this for decades.

    https://youtu.be/bLm5RggbhlE
    , @Andrei Martyanov

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.
     
    Truth to be told, he had his moments in his Writer's Diary but I agree with you here. Dostoevsky the novelist, however, is not quite in Tolstoy's league. Close but not quite. There is simply very little comparable to the scale and scope of War and Peace even despite many flaws of Tolstoy's "philosophy" and his "historicity".
  65. @AP
    I disagree with you here a little, because a great author is not merely a great stylist but also someone capable of exploring or revealing real truths. This makes such authors potential prophets.
    Dostoyevsky is often regarded as the worlds' greatest novelist but in terms of pure style he is fairly mediocre. An author of great literature is in essence completely different from a great actor or brilliant musician.

    An author of great literature is in essence completely different from a great actor or brilliant musician.

    Why? The novelist skill has a lot to do with half-closing the eyes, and allowing yourself to dream and to fantasize, and to make-believe. Although there is an analytical and organization component, involved in the composition of the story.

    Acting profession is a similar behaviour at the basis, that allows the person to inhabit another character or setting. But there is little need for the analytical component (as this is organized by the director or writer).

    As for novelists writing history. Here there are directly contradicting personalities and skills – and a fabulist, is no substitute for a professionally trained historian, as history is more science than art.

    As for all these talented people (whether actors, or even scientists and mathematicians) – they are often extremely mediocre when they were working outside the area of their talent which made them famous.

    Generally it is a case of ‘free-riding’. Where the person who built a fame in one area, uses this to trick people into thinking they are expert in some other area (in which they have no real ability).

    Sadly, this is very common with artists, who commonly have narcissistic personality disorder, and believe themselves to be a universal genius.

    People know this where it is directly impacting them, and you would not want J.K. Rowling – for all her imaginative genius – to perform surgery on you, or trust to walk on a bridge she built.

    But somehow when it comes to history, or economics, or even political science – which are almost equally unconnected to story invention – people are still impressed by their fame.

    When you find someone with ability in more than one area, it is particularly surprising, but it is not the normal state, and particularly not the normal state for artists.

    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian
    I think you both are right- partially. Greatest writers, in their best works, possess wisdom (or, in Dostoevsky's case, something prophetic- although not in ordinary sense (E.M.Forster had written about this).

    https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/41gAKOhM0sL._SX327_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

    WITH prophecy in the narrow sense of foretelling the future we have no concern, and we have not much concern with it as an appeal for righteousness. What will interest us today—what we must respond to, for interest now becomes an inappropriate word—is an accent in the novelist’s voice, an accent for which the flutes and saxophones of fantasy may have prepared us. His theme is the universe, or something universal, but he is not necessarily going to “say” anything about the universe; he proposes to sing, and the strangeness of song arising in the halls of fiction is bound to give us a shock.
     


    Prophecy—in our sense—is a tone of voice. It may imply any of the faiths that have haunted humanity—Christianity, Buddhism, dualism, Satanism, or the mere raising of human love and hatred to such a power that their normal receptacles no longer contain them: but what particular view of the universe is recommended—with that we are not directly concerned.
     

    Now what is the difference in these passages—a difference that throbs in every phrase? It is that the first writer is a preacher, and the second a prophet. George Eliot talks about God, but never alters her focus; God and the tables and chairs are all in the same plane, and in consequence we have not for a moment the feeling that the whole universe needs pity and love—they are only needed in Hetty’s cell. In Dostoevsky the characters and situations always stand for more than themselves; infinity attends them; though yet they remain individuals they expand to embrace it and summon it to embrace them; one can apply to them the saying of St. Catherine of Siena that God is in the soul and the soul is in God as the sea is in the fish and the fish is in the sea. Every sentence he writes implies this extension, and the implication is the dominant aspect of his work. He is a great novelist in the ordinary sense—that is to say his characters have relation to ordinary life and also live in their own surroundings, there are incidents which keep us excited, and so on; he has also the greatness of a prophet, to which our ordinary standards are inapplicable.
     


    Mitya is a round character, but he is capable of extension. He does not conceal anything (mysticism), he does not mean anything (symbolism), he is merely Dmitri Karamazov, but to be merely a person in Dostoevsky is to join up with all the other people far back. Consequently the tremendous current suddenly flows—for me in those closing words: “I’ve had a good dream, gentlemen.” Have I had that good dream too? No, Dostoevsky’s characters ask us to share something deeper than their experiences. They convey to us a sensation that is partly physical—the sensation of sinking into a translucent globe and seeing our experience floating far above us on its surface, tiny, remote, yet ours. We have not ceased to be people, we have given nothing up, but “the sea is in the fish and the fish is in the sea.
     
    Back to the topic.

    I don't think that great philosophers, even those realist enough (Aristotle, Hobbes, sometimes Kant,..) had much to offer re politics & society. True, their critique was frequently healthy (for instance, Aristotle's critique of realities of Plato's idealized Sparta), but even those considered to be experienced & empiricist, like Bertrand Russell, were limited by their strong personal inclinations & ideas.
    , @AaronB

    Sadly, this is very common with artists, who commonly have narcissistic personality disorder, and believe themselves to be a universal genius.
     
    This is only a commentary on modern western culture, and not inherent to art. Medieval artists were self-effacing, and Chinese artists would meditate to get rid of a sense of self before they began their work.

    Stop projecting modern western sickness. Most modern western art is not of universal human significance precisely because it is narcissistic, and only capable of moving to people who are facing the problems of a very specific period in time and place. In 200 years Dostoevsky , for instance, will be forgotten, but gothic cathedrals (should they still exist), Greek temples, and Chinese landscape painting will still be appreciated. Dostoevsky is only relevant to people caught between tradition and modernity - this is not a universal human theme, and as modernity fades as the "failed app" that it is, Dostoevsky will come to seem a curiosity. I myself, as a creature of this time, deeply appreciate Dostoevsky - but I recognize the need to overcome his relevance. (I am merely using him as a stand in for most modern art).
  66. @German_reader

    Stolypin was a winner.
     
    From what I've read (far too little admittedly), you're right, it's very unfortunate that Stolypin (who seems to have been a sensible reformer) was murdered. Maybe things would have turned out differently if that hadn't happened.
    In any case, I didn't want to put down Nicholas too much...on a personal level he was probably a decent man, certainly didn't deserve his horrible end. I just don't quite see how his political record can be "appreciated" (his dignity in facing death may be a different matter...but that's more of a suffering virtue than the kind of active skill necessary for politicians).

    You’re German.

    If Stolypin’s vision had persisted Russia might today have the power of the United States.

    Instead for the entire past century Russia has generally been no more powerful than Germany, with the exception of 1944-1980 or so. This is a despite Germany suffering from many disasters in the past century such as losing two world wars.

    You should be grateful that things did not turn out differently.

  67. @German_reader

    then it seems to me you have to accept that religion is either adaptive or at least was adaptive in the past
     
    That's certainly true, but could you consciously make yourself believe in something just because it's evolutionarily adaptive?
    I often find nationalists who enlist religion in the service of their national cause a bit cynical tbh, they seem unconcerned about the question of religious truth. Unless you really believe that Christ died for our sins and rose from the dead, what's the point in going on about the centrality of Christianity for your national identity? And in the modern world such belief is very hard for many people (with good reason imo).
    There are also inherent tensions between universalist religions and nationalism.
    Many identitarians/nationalists seem to believe they can just ignore those issues, but imo that's an illusion.

    That’s certainly true, but could you consciously make yourself believe in something just because it’s evolutionarily adaptive?

    Of course. If you find that certain assumptions you can’t prove by logic are nevertheless necessary for humans to flourish on this earth, then it’s paradoxically logical to conclude that “reality” on a deeper level indicates the “existence” of these assumptions, in some form.

    Of course, you cannot accept this. For cultural revitalization to occur, the older generation of whites simply has to die off. We must wait patiently.

  68. @Dmitry

    An author of great literature is in essence completely different from a great actor or brilliant musician.
     
    Why? The novelist skill has a lot to do with half-closing the eyes, and allowing yourself to dream and to fantasize, and to make-believe. Although there is an analytical and organization component, involved in the composition of the story.

    Acting profession is a similar behaviour at the basis, that allows the person to inhabit another character or setting. But there is little need for the analytical component (as this is organized by the director or writer).

    As for novelists writing history. Here there are directly contradicting personalities and skills - and a fabulist, is no substitute for a professionally trained historian, as history is more science than art.

    As for all these talented people (whether actors, or even scientists and mathematicians) - they are often extremely mediocre when they were working outside the area of their talent which made them famous.

    Generally it is a case of 'free-riding'. Where the person who built a fame in one area, uses this to trick people into thinking they are expert in some other area (in which they have no real ability).

    Sadly, this is very common with artists, who commonly have narcissistic personality disorder, and believe themselves to be a universal genius.

    People know this where it is directly impacting them, and you would not want J.K. Rowling - for all her imaginative genius - to perform surgery on you, or trust to walk on a bridge she built.

    But somehow when it comes to history, or economics, or even political science - which are almost equally unconnected to story invention - people are still impressed by their fame.

    When you find someone with ability in more than one area, it is particularly surprising, but it is not the normal state, and particularly not the normal state for artists.

    I think you both are right- partially. Greatest writers, in their best works, possess wisdom (or, in Dostoevsky’s case, something prophetic- although not in ordinary sense (E.M.Forster had written about this).

    WITH prophecy in the narrow sense of foretelling the future we have no concern, and we have not much concern with it as an appeal for righteousness. What will interest us today—what we must respond to, for interest now becomes an inappropriate word—is an accent in the novelist’s voice, an accent for which the flutes and saxophones of fantasy may have prepared us. His theme is the universe, or something universal, but he is not necessarily going to “say” anything about the universe; he proposes to sing, and the strangeness of song arising in the halls of fiction is bound to give us a shock.

    Prophecy—in our sense—is a tone of voice. It may imply any of the faiths that have haunted humanity—Christianity, Buddhism, dualism, Satanism, or the mere raising of human love and hatred to such a power that their normal receptacles no longer contain them: but what particular view of the universe is recommended—with that we are not directly concerned.

    Now what is the difference in these passages—a difference that throbs in every phrase? It is that the first writer is a preacher, and the second a prophet. George Eliot talks about God, but never alters her focus; God and the tables and chairs are all in the same plane, and in consequence we have not for a moment the feeling that the whole universe needs pity and love—they are only needed in Hetty’s cell. In Dostoevsky the characters and situations always stand for more than themselves; infinity attends them; though yet they remain individuals they expand to embrace it and summon it to embrace them; one can apply to them the saying of St. Catherine of Siena that God is in the soul and the soul is in God as the sea is in the fish and the fish is in the sea. Every sentence he writes implies this extension, and the implication is the dominant aspect of his work. He is a great novelist in the ordinary sense—that is to say his characters have relation to ordinary life and also live in their own surroundings, there are incidents which keep us excited, and so on; he has also the greatness of a prophet, to which our ordinary standards are inapplicable.

    Mitya is a round character, but he is capable of extension. He does not conceal anything (mysticism), he does not mean anything (symbolism), he is merely Dmitri Karamazov, but to be merely a person in Dostoevsky is to join up with all the other people far back. Consequently the tremendous current suddenly flows—for me in those closing words: “I’ve had a good dream, gentlemen.” Have I had that good dream too? No, Dostoevsky’s characters ask us to share something deeper than their experiences. They convey to us a sensation that is partly physical—the sensation of sinking into a translucent globe and seeing our experience floating far above us on its surface, tiny, remote, yet ours. We have not ceased to be people, we have given nothing up, but “the sea is in the fish and the fish is in the sea.

    Back to the topic.

    I don’t think that great philosophers, even those realist enough (Aristotle, Hobbes, sometimes Kant,..) had much to offer re politics & society. True, their critique was frequently healthy (for instance, Aristotle’s critique of realities of Plato’s idealized Sparta), but even those considered to be experienced & empiricist, like Bertrand Russell, were limited by their strong personal inclinations & ideas.

    • Agree: AP
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    It seems usually the work of art itself - with its own interior logic - that contains wisdom though, rather than the artist; and often a novel can be spoiled by self-conscious preaching by authors.

    This is very much of the case of Tolstoy, who is best - and conveys stronger moral message - when he lets the creation speak for itself.

    Of course, in all this, the artists themselves are often more unwise, selfish and immoral in their own life than the average person, even as the same artists can produce works with the opposite qualities.

    It has a lot do with the process and discipline of the work itself forcing the artist to give it (the work) objective qualities. The artist itself can be, and in great art usually is, very different to the work that they manage to produce, and which is often a compensation of all they are not (as when narcissistic womanizer like Puccini, gives the greatest empathy to the situation of female characters in his work).

    , @Josecanuc
    On a 48 Hours investigation, when investigators asked a person who personally knew a con artist sociopath who had murdered his fiancee - “Who was this guy?”- she responded: “I don’t know -he would make up these stories and tell her a lie - he was confident that he had been chosen by God to be her blessing and light - and then tried to - pretend in his mind only- that he actually was what he reasoned he was. Because he was a sociopath and lacked character to begin with -he was forced to develop technique of seduction - that he backed with Holy scriptures to “prove” it. And since most people are imbeciles to begin with - she believed him. And thus he got away not only with murder but with piling the bull shit high and deep.

    .
  69. As for the article itself – simply brilliant.

    I’m impressed, Anatoly, at the growth in your views. Was not expecting it.

    You are still young enough, apparently, to grow, and participate in the coming turn away from the enlightenment death cult and towards health and sanity (and yes, I know you’re still a staunch supporter of technology and all that).

    The older generation of whites, the Steve Sailers, John Derbyshires, German Readers, Bardon Karolians, and honestly perhaps the majority of undoubtedly highly intelligent white commenters on this blog, while certainly not bad people, are nevertheless too tainted by the death cult and must quietly die off – God willing peacefully and of natural causes – before any kind of revitalization can occur.

    Let us do what we can, and wait patiently.

    • Replies: @German_reader

    "German Readers...must quietly die off"
     
    Hey, I'm only a few years older than AK!
    Besides, just for your information: the article above isn't by AK, but by Mr Kholmogorov. Maybe AK will chime in and tell us about his own views about Solzhenitsyn's legacy and relevance in more detail.
    , @Talha

    and yes, I know you’re still a staunch supporter of technology and all that
     
    "Yes I love technology,
    But not as much as you, you see,
    But I still love technology,
    Always and forever"
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QyiCMzm8QQo

    Peace.
    , @tim s
    AaronB,

    In America the young are always ready to give to those who are older than themselves the full benefits of their inexperience.

    Oscar Wilde
     
    If you're not American, I dub you an honorable one, for lack of better words. You remind me of myself when I was younger. I wish you the best, insufferable one.
  70. As part of my ongoing campaign against the existence of the Ukraine I have consulted Wikipedia.

    I took a look at this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hetman_of_Zaporizhian_Host

    Take a look at the portraits.

    All of these guys have stupid Russian-looking mustaches and hats until about the time that Russians started LARPing as Westerners.

    They also have Russian-type names. Several of them are even named Ivan.

    Verdict: the Ukraine does not exist.

    This is a narcissism of small differences type thing, and proponents of the “Ukraine” have some stupid fantasy they can be “European”.

    And, as always, I continue to remain baffled as to why anyone would want to be “Ukrainian” instead of Russian. Any “Ukrainian” has the immediate option of joining something that is both bigger and better.

    If the choice were German instead of Russian I could understand of course. Probably many “Ukrainians” actually think this is an option based on EU fantasies.

    • Replies: @AP

    I took a look at this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hetman_of_Zaporizhian_Host

    Take a look at the portraits.

    All of these guys have stupid Russian-looking mustaches and hats until about the time that Russians started LARPing as Westerners.
     

    Mustaches were a Polish thing. Russians traditionally had beards, not mustaches.

    Here is Rembrandt's picture of a Polish nobleman:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/2/2c/Rembrandt_van_Rijn_-_A_Polish_nobleman.jpg/408px-Rembrandt_van_Rijn_-_A_Polish_nobleman.jpg

    Another Polish nobleman:

    http://enacademic.com/pictures/enwiki/74/Jerzy_Sebastian_Lubomirski.PNG

    Here is a Russian boyar wedding from before Russian were LARPing as westerners:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/72/A_Boyar_Wedding_Feast_%28Konstantin_Makovsky%2C_1883%29_Google_Cultural_Institute.jpg/800px-A_Boyar_Wedding_Feast_%28Konstantin_Makovsky%2C_1883%29_Google_Cultural_Institute.jpg

    A Russian boyar:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/30/Godfrey_Kneller_-_Portrait_of_P.Potemkin_%281682%2C_Hermitage%29_-_contrast.jpg

    Which ones do the Ukrainians look more like?


    They also have Russian-type names. Several of them are even named Ivan.
     
    And there is Marco in Italy and Spain. Ivan is very common in Bulgaria and Croatia. Are those peoples Russians also?
    , @Bigly

    If the choice were German instead of Russian I could understand of course. Probably many “Ukrainians” actually think this is an option based on EU fantasies.
     
    My feeling as well. I think that most pro-EU svidomites want to join the EU in order to move to an affluent European country. Germany would be their top destination. There they can rejoice in poz and export its most exotic expressions to Ukraine as the latest European trends.

    In 50 years, Ukrainians will be nigger-loving Russophobes, unless they don't prevail in Donbass, which they won't, thankfully.

    I think of Ukraine as I think of Bavaria in the past: a Germanic people with separatist tendencies who nevertheless remained within the unified German nation. Ukraine could have a regional identity, whose preservation would be wayyy more guaranteed within Russia than under Western rule.
  71. What’s interesting is that the scientific world view is justified because it’s supposed to lead to flourishing and thriving, and religion and the aesthetic world view is specifically denigrated for not being conducive to flourishing – words like “outdated”, antiquated, Dmitry with his attempt to trivialize aesthetics as “important” but less significant for human flourishing than science, etc – all of this is a rhetorical attempt to suggest science is most conducive to long term human flourishing.

    And yet I think keeping human flourishing as the basic metric for judging any world view is absolutely correct – “effectiveness” really is the metric we should use, and instinctively do anyways, which is why science had such rhetorical appeal. Religious and aesthetic people have long railed against “effectiveness” as a barbarism, but this is a misunderstanding I now see.

    Only, we must view “total flourishing” as the goal – and not partial flourishing in one realm at the expense of the whole, which it is now clear, leads eventually to the collapse of any kind of flourishing. From this point of view, it is now clear that religion and the aesthetic world view are indispensable to “total flourishing” – and the apparently “useless” is indeed highly useful – a point I believe Victor Hugo made in the opening to one of his novels, I believe Les Miserables.

    We have accumulated enough history as a species by this point of the “human experiment” to know that excessively focusing on material flourishing leads to a total collapse of the human endeavor.

    Now we must only wait patiently till the last votaries of the old Death Culture fade from the scene, and view them with compassion and pity in the meantime.

  72. @neutral
    The "motivation" for Britain regarding Belgium was propaganda produced by people in Britain, things like mass rape and killing babies was used to for propaganda, it seems their penchant to produce propaganda to agitate for war has not stopped.

    true – the western elites can’t get their native population to go kill people just for fun and loot like they could in the old days so now they need to trick them into believing they are saving babies – weird huh.

  73. @The Big Red Scary

    I know a lot of commenters here will disagree, but imo Russia’s leadership in 1914 must take a major share of the responsibility for the outbreak of WW1
     
    I don't know enough to have an opinion, but would be interested in hearing that of others.

    For what it's worth, the impression that I got from reading Lieven's biography of him is that liberal politicians were much more keen on a war with Germany than was Nicholas himself, and ultimately it was a deal cut between the military and the liberals that forced Nicholas's abdication. In hindsight, I suspect that if Nicholas is at fault for not stopping the war, then ultimately he would have to be at fault for not crushing the revolution of 1905 and for not avoiding war with Japan in 1904 (for example, he could have accepted the Japanese offer of Manchuria in return for Korea). Unlike the war with Germany, my impression from reading Lieven is that Nicholas was rather enthusiastic about war with Japan.

    Another thing that struck me reading Lieven's book is how similar some of modern Russia's problems are to those of the late empire, in particular the need to catch up economically or be crushed and to find some way to distribute and transfer power without leading to chaos.

    Anyhow, I'm grateful to be a simple person without responsibility for such momentous decisions.

    I don’t know enough to have an opinion, but would be interested in hearing that of others.

    I read a lot about this many years ago but don’t remember enough to have an opinion other than if you want to know who to blame for something but don’t know enough to have an opinion then nine times out of ten your safest bet is it was probably the banks.

  74. @AaronB
    As for the article itself - simply brilliant.

    I'm impressed, Anatoly, at the growth in your views. Was not expecting it.

    You are still young enough, apparently, to grow, and participate in the coming turn away from the enlightenment death cult and towards health and sanity (and yes, I know you're still a staunch supporter of technology and all that).

    The older generation of whites, the Steve Sailers, John Derbyshires, German Readers, Bardon Karolians, and honestly perhaps the majority of undoubtedly highly intelligent white commenters on this blog, while certainly not bad people, are nevertheless too tainted by the death cult and must quietly die off - God willing peacefully and of natural causes - before any kind of revitalization can occur.

    Let us do what we can, and wait patiently.

    “German Readers…must quietly die off”

    Hey, I’m only a few years older than AK!
    Besides, just for your information: the article above isn’t by AK, but by Mr Kholmogorov. Maybe AK will chime in and tell us about his own views about Solzhenitsyn’s legacy and relevance in more detail.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    Perhaps, but you're thoroughly western and live in a western country - Anatoly has at least some connection to a non-western culture, however tenuous, and has chosen to live in one. The age thing seems to apply more to westerners. Anyways it's just an average.

    I realize Anatoly didn't write the article, but he did publish it - I'm also referring to his use of the "agree" button above. This is growth, however small.

    Nothing against you personally, German reader. But it's increasingly obvious we must wait for the coming generation of westerners.
    , @A Spaniard
    Your comments usually convey a mixture of defeatism and lack of enthusiasm for the future that I find fairly atypical in younger commenters.

    That's why you sound like you are some kind of middle-aged grumpy German who can only wait hopeless and helpless as his country becomes the ever more powerful centre of the EU multiculti empire.

    Maybe you don't think/feel anything along those lines but it seems to me your comments read like that.
  75. AP says:
    @Thorfinnsson
    As part of my ongoing campaign against the existence of the Ukraine I have consulted Wikipedia.

    I took a look at this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hetman_of_Zaporizhian_Host

    Take a look at the portraits.

    All of these guys have stupid Russian-looking mustaches and hats until about the time that Russians started LARPing as Westerners.

    They also have Russian-type names. Several of them are even named Ivan.

    Verdict: the Ukraine does not exist.

    This is a narcissism of small differences type thing, and proponents of the "Ukraine" have some stupid fantasy they can be "European".

    And, as always, I continue to remain baffled as to why anyone would want to be "Ukrainian" instead of Russian. Any "Ukrainian" has the immediate option of joining something that is both bigger and better.

    If the choice were German instead of Russian I could understand of course. Probably many "Ukrainians" actually think this is an option based on EU fantasies.

    I took a look at this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hetman_of_Zaporizhian_Host

    Take a look at the portraits.

    All of these guys have stupid Russian-looking mustaches and hats until about the time that Russians started LARPing as Westerners.

    Mustaches were a Polish thing. Russians traditionally had beards, not mustaches.

    Here is Rembrandt’s picture of a Polish nobleman:

    Another Polish nobleman:

    Here is a Russian boyar wedding from before Russian were LARPing as westerners:

    A Russian boyar:

    Which ones do the Ukrainians look more like?

    They also have Russian-type names. Several of them are even named Ivan.

    And there is Marco in Italy and Spain. Ivan is very common in Bulgaria and Croatia. Are those peoples Russians also?

    • Replies: @inertial
    Are you sure that Polish guy is not LARPing as European? You do an image search on "szlachta" and you get fellows that look like this, for example:

    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/10/0f/6b/100f6b90c83bc3d9fa6b21b6ba5d2ed8.jpg

    Not too different from the boyar.

    , @Thorfinnsson
    Now we're back to akshually, the Ukraine was also dominated by Poland.

    Give it up--your alleged country is fake.

    Join Poland or Russia.

    Or both.

    Just don't keep telling the world you're "Ukrainian". It's unbearable.
  76. @German_reader

    "German Readers...must quietly die off"
     
    Hey, I'm only a few years older than AK!
    Besides, just for your information: the article above isn't by AK, but by Mr Kholmogorov. Maybe AK will chime in and tell us about his own views about Solzhenitsyn's legacy and relevance in more detail.

    Perhaps, but you’re thoroughly western and live in a western country – Anatoly has at least some connection to a non-western culture, however tenuous, and has chosen to live in one. The age thing seems to apply more to westerners. Anyways it’s just an average.

    I realize Anatoly didn’t write the article, but he did publish it – I’m also referring to his use of the “agree” button above. This is growth, however small.

    Nothing against you personally, German reader. But it’s increasingly obvious we must wait for the coming generation of westerners.

    • Replies: @for-the-record
    . But it’s increasingly obvious we must wait for the coming generation of westerners.

    Not quite sure I follow: if I understand the demographics correctly "westerners", as originally defined, are going to become a vanishing species in the not-too-distant future.
  77. @AP

    I took a look at this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hetman_of_Zaporizhian_Host

    Take a look at the portraits.

    All of these guys have stupid Russian-looking mustaches and hats until about the time that Russians started LARPing as Westerners.
     

    Mustaches were a Polish thing. Russians traditionally had beards, not mustaches.

    Here is Rembrandt's picture of a Polish nobleman:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/2/2c/Rembrandt_van_Rijn_-_A_Polish_nobleman.jpg/408px-Rembrandt_van_Rijn_-_A_Polish_nobleman.jpg

    Another Polish nobleman:

    http://enacademic.com/pictures/enwiki/74/Jerzy_Sebastian_Lubomirski.PNG

    Here is a Russian boyar wedding from before Russian were LARPing as westerners:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/72/A_Boyar_Wedding_Feast_%28Konstantin_Makovsky%2C_1883%29_Google_Cultural_Institute.jpg/800px-A_Boyar_Wedding_Feast_%28Konstantin_Makovsky%2C_1883%29_Google_Cultural_Institute.jpg

    A Russian boyar:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/30/Godfrey_Kneller_-_Portrait_of_P.Potemkin_%281682%2C_Hermitage%29_-_contrast.jpg

    Which ones do the Ukrainians look more like?


    They also have Russian-type names. Several of them are even named Ivan.
     
    And there is Marco in Italy and Spain. Ivan is very common in Bulgaria and Croatia. Are those peoples Russians also?

    Are you sure that Polish guy is not LARPing as European? You do an image search on “szlachta” and you get fellows that look like this, for example:

    Not too different from the boyar.

    • Replies: @AP
    Looks very different.

    Polish Szlachta (noble):

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/15/Stanislaw_Antoni_Szczuka_%281652_1654-1710%29.jpg/220px-Stanislaw_Antoni_Szczuka_%281652_1654-1710%29.jpg

    http://genealogia.lt/images/szlachta.jpg

    Ukrainian Cossack elite (noble):

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a1/Pavlo_Teterya.jpg

    Look pretty much the same. As one would expect - the two groups came from a similar social and politcial world.

    Russian boyars:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/13/Bojaren.jpg

    https://c8.alamy.com/comp/DRAJJ3/a-russian-tsar-with-his-boyars-DRAJJ3.jpg

    It's a clear contrast.

    There are some Cossacks with beards but the prototype is with mustaches, as with Poles, whereas Russian Boyars had long flowing beards and tall hats (apparently, the taller the hats, the higher the social status).
  78. @German_reader

    Stolypin was a winner.
     
    From what I've read (far too little admittedly), you're right, it's very unfortunate that Stolypin (who seems to have been a sensible reformer) was murdered. Maybe things would have turned out differently if that hadn't happened.
    In any case, I didn't want to put down Nicholas too much...on a personal level he was probably a decent man, certainly didn't deserve his horrible end. I just don't quite see how his political record can be "appreciated" (his dignity in facing death may be a different matter...but that's more of a suffering virtue than the kind of active skill necessary for politicians).

    Kholmogorov is a big fan of Nicholas as a statesman and has a lot to say about it. He makes a fairly good case. Hopefully it will get translated one day.

  79. AP says:
    @inertial
    Are you sure that Polish guy is not LARPing as European? You do an image search on "szlachta" and you get fellows that look like this, for example:

    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/10/0f/6b/100f6b90c83bc3d9fa6b21b6ba5d2ed8.jpg

    Not too different from the boyar.

    Looks very different.

    Polish Szlachta (noble):

    Ukrainian Cossack elite (noble):

    Look pretty much the same. As one would expect – the two groups came from a similar social and politcial world.

    Russian boyars:

    It’s a clear contrast.

    There are some Cossacks with beards but the prototype is with mustaches, as with Poles, whereas Russian Boyars had long flowing beards and tall hats (apparently, the taller the hats, the higher the social status).

    • Replies: @inertial
    Right, a huge contrast (not.)

    And here is another example of a Polish aristocrat:


    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/a3/10/54/a31054f456c16bcdc0f16bd3b5ede615.jpg


    Oops, actually it's an Ottoman aristocrat. Hard to tell the difference.
  80. @AaronB
    Perhaps, but you're thoroughly western and live in a western country - Anatoly has at least some connection to a non-western culture, however tenuous, and has chosen to live in one. The age thing seems to apply more to westerners. Anyways it's just an average.

    I realize Anatoly didn't write the article, but he did publish it - I'm also referring to his use of the "agree" button above. This is growth, however small.

    Nothing against you personally, German reader. But it's increasingly obvious we must wait for the coming generation of westerners.

    . But it’s increasingly obvious we must wait for the coming generation of westerners.

    Not quite sure I follow: if I understand the demographics correctly “westerners”, as originally defined, are going to become a vanishing species in the not-too-distant future.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    That depends on the attitude of the next two generations of westerners. If we keep on producing Steve Sailers and people like many of the white commenters on unz, then you are correct.
  81. @German_reader

    "German Readers...must quietly die off"
     
    Hey, I'm only a few years older than AK!
    Besides, just for your information: the article above isn't by AK, but by Mr Kholmogorov. Maybe AK will chime in and tell us about his own views about Solzhenitsyn's legacy and relevance in more detail.

    Your comments usually convey a mixture of defeatism and lack of enthusiasm for the future that I find fairly atypical in younger commenters.

    That’s why you sound like you are some kind of middle-aged grumpy German who can only wait hopeless and helpless as his country becomes the ever more powerful centre of the EU multiculti empire.

    Maybe you don’t think/feel anything along those lines but it seems to me your comments read like that.

    • Agree: utu
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    I'd be more surprised if he wasn't complaining about the future of the country - how many educated people don't complain about their country's politics.
  82. @for-the-record
    . But it’s increasingly obvious we must wait for the coming generation of westerners.

    Not quite sure I follow: if I understand the demographics correctly "westerners", as originally defined, are going to become a vanishing species in the not-too-distant future.

    That depends on the attitude of the next two generations of westerners. If we keep on producing Steve Sailers and people like many of the white commenters on unz, then you are correct.

    • Replies: @for-the-record
    So please explain to me your preferred scenario.
    , @Anon

    If we keep on producing Steve Sailers
     
    Pray tell, what will be the result if we keep on producing Aarons B?

    ;)
  83. @AP
    Looks very different.

    Polish Szlachta (noble):

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/15/Stanislaw_Antoni_Szczuka_%281652_1654-1710%29.jpg/220px-Stanislaw_Antoni_Szczuka_%281652_1654-1710%29.jpg

    http://genealogia.lt/images/szlachta.jpg

    Ukrainian Cossack elite (noble):

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a1/Pavlo_Teterya.jpg

    Look pretty much the same. As one would expect - the two groups came from a similar social and politcial world.

    Russian boyars:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/13/Bojaren.jpg

    https://c8.alamy.com/comp/DRAJJ3/a-russian-tsar-with-his-boyars-DRAJJ3.jpg

    It's a clear contrast.

    There are some Cossacks with beards but the prototype is with mustaches, as with Poles, whereas Russian Boyars had long flowing beards and tall hats (apparently, the taller the hats, the higher the social status).

    Right, a huge contrast (not.)

    And here is another example of a Polish aristocrat:

    Oops, actually it’s an Ottoman aristocrat. Hard to tell the difference.

    • Replies: @AP
    Sarmatism:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarmatism
    , @notanon
    there was a white slave trade out of Crimea for hundreds of years so it's not surprising if Turkish aristos ended up looking east European.
  84. @AP

    I took a look at this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hetman_of_Zaporizhian_Host

    Take a look at the portraits.

    All of these guys have stupid Russian-looking mustaches and hats until about the time that Russians started LARPing as Westerners.
     

    Mustaches were a Polish thing. Russians traditionally had beards, not mustaches.

    Here is Rembrandt's picture of a Polish nobleman:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/2/2c/Rembrandt_van_Rijn_-_A_Polish_nobleman.jpg/408px-Rembrandt_van_Rijn_-_A_Polish_nobleman.jpg

    Another Polish nobleman:

    http://enacademic.com/pictures/enwiki/74/Jerzy_Sebastian_Lubomirski.PNG

    Here is a Russian boyar wedding from before Russian were LARPing as westerners:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/72/A_Boyar_Wedding_Feast_%28Konstantin_Makovsky%2C_1883%29_Google_Cultural_Institute.jpg/800px-A_Boyar_Wedding_Feast_%28Konstantin_Makovsky%2C_1883%29_Google_Cultural_Institute.jpg

    A Russian boyar:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/30/Godfrey_Kneller_-_Portrait_of_P.Potemkin_%281682%2C_Hermitage%29_-_contrast.jpg

    Which ones do the Ukrainians look more like?


    They also have Russian-type names. Several of them are even named Ivan.
     
    And there is Marco in Italy and Spain. Ivan is very common in Bulgaria and Croatia. Are those peoples Russians also?

    Now we’re back to akshually, the Ukraine was also dominated by Poland.

    Give it up–your alleged country is fake.

    Join Poland or Russia.

    Or both.

    Just don’t keep telling the world you’re “Ukrainian”. It’s unbearable.

    • Replies: @AP

    Now we’re back to akshually, the Ukraine was also dominated by Poland.
     
    Facts are facts.

    What differentiates England from Germany? Conquest by French-speaking Normans, which brought with it massive influx of French words, among other changes to the society (such as more Scandinavian-style political culture, the parliamentary system is a Nordic thing). Old English looked like German, after Norman conquest the English language does not.

    Ukraine experienced the a similar phenomenon due to centuries of Polish rule and settlement. The only difference is that because all three peoples are Slavs Ukrainians are more like Poles and Russians than English are like French or Germans.

    Russians didn't have this. So the two peoples are not the same. OTOH, the natives of Ukraine are not Poles either. They are a people different from those two. This fact doesn't change whether these people are called Ukrainians, Little Russians, Rusyns, whatever.
  85. @Dmitry

    An author of great literature is in essence completely different from a great actor or brilliant musician.
     
    Why? The novelist skill has a lot to do with half-closing the eyes, and allowing yourself to dream and to fantasize, and to make-believe. Although there is an analytical and organization component, involved in the composition of the story.

    Acting profession is a similar behaviour at the basis, that allows the person to inhabit another character or setting. But there is little need for the analytical component (as this is organized by the director or writer).

    As for novelists writing history. Here there are directly contradicting personalities and skills - and a fabulist, is no substitute for a professionally trained historian, as history is more science than art.

    As for all these talented people (whether actors, or even scientists and mathematicians) - they are often extremely mediocre when they were working outside the area of their talent which made them famous.

    Generally it is a case of 'free-riding'. Where the person who built a fame in one area, uses this to trick people into thinking they are expert in some other area (in which they have no real ability).

    Sadly, this is very common with artists, who commonly have narcissistic personality disorder, and believe themselves to be a universal genius.

    People know this where it is directly impacting them, and you would not want J.K. Rowling - for all her imaginative genius - to perform surgery on you, or trust to walk on a bridge she built.

    But somehow when it comes to history, or economics, or even political science - which are almost equally unconnected to story invention - people are still impressed by their fame.

    When you find someone with ability in more than one area, it is particularly surprising, but it is not the normal state, and particularly not the normal state for artists.

    Sadly, this is very common with artists, who commonly have narcissistic personality disorder, and believe themselves to be a universal genius.

    This is only a commentary on modern western culture, and not inherent to art. Medieval artists were self-effacing, and Chinese artists would meditate to get rid of a sense of self before they began their work.

    Stop projecting modern western sickness. Most modern western art is not of universal human significance precisely because it is narcissistic, and only capable of moving to people who are facing the problems of a very specific period in time and place. In 200 years Dostoevsky , for instance, will be forgotten, but gothic cathedrals (should they still exist), Greek temples, and Chinese landscape painting will still be appreciated. Dostoevsky is only relevant to people caught between tradition and modernity – this is not a universal human theme, and as modernity fades as the “failed app” that it is, Dostoevsky will come to seem a curiosity. I myself, as a creature of this time, deeply appreciate Dostoevsky – but I recognize the need to overcome his relevance. (I am merely using him as a stand in for most modern art).

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    The idea that there were not creative narcissists in societies like Ancient China, doing the landscape painting - I would find difficult to believe.

    I agree with the point, that society's worship of these artistic personalities (or poetic personalities) - as the unique men of genius, with wisdom outside their fields - was something that became more common from the 19th century onwards.

    And sensing their elevation in society, people like novelists, painters and composers, were in some negative sense becoming increasingly megalomaniacal, from the 19th century, with some styling themselves as prophets and seers (even when in reality, they were more often like over-sized childen - as you can quickly discover by reading the biography of your favourite artists/novelists/composers).

    Some of them, like Verdi and Janacek, though - have had a positive impact political culture in their home countries, as contributors in national consciousness.

  86. @inertial
    Right, a huge contrast (not.)

    And here is another example of a Polish aristocrat:


    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/a3/10/54/a31054f456c16bcdc0f16bd3b5ede615.jpg


    Oops, actually it's an Ottoman aristocrat. Hard to tell the difference.
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Indeed. The combination of historical Polish-Lithuanian notables loving to LARP as Turkics (up to the point of an Armenian-Turk immigrant setting up Slutsk sash production in the area of modern-day Belorussia and the existence of the Belorussian Arabic alphabet) and modern day Poles/Lithuanians going on about how they are Europeans while Russians are the political and cultural descendants of the Horde is highly amusing and ironic.
  87. AP says:
    @Thorfinnsson
    Now we're back to akshually, the Ukraine was also dominated by Poland.

    Give it up--your alleged country is fake.

    Join Poland or Russia.

    Or both.

    Just don't keep telling the world you're "Ukrainian". It's unbearable.

    Now we’re back to akshually, the Ukraine was also dominated by Poland.

    Facts are facts.

    What differentiates England from Germany? Conquest by French-speaking Normans, which brought with it massive influx of French words, among other changes to the society (such as more Scandinavian-style political culture, the parliamentary system is a Nordic thing). Old English looked like German, after Norman conquest the English language does not.

    Ukraine experienced the a similar phenomenon due to centuries of Polish rule and settlement. The only difference is that because all three peoples are Slavs Ukrainians are more like Poles and Russians than English are like French or Germans.

    Russians didn’t have this. So the two peoples are not the same. OTOH, the natives of Ukraine are not Poles either. They are a people different from those two. This fact doesn’t change whether these people are called Ukrainians, Little Russians, Rusyns, whatever.

    • Replies: @Mikhail

    Ukraine experienced the a similar phenomenon due to centuries of Polish rule and settlement. The only difference is that because all three peoples are Slavs Ukrainians are more like Poles and Russians than English are like French or Germans.

    Russians didn’t have this. So the two peoples are not the same. OTOH, the natives of Ukraine are not Poles either. They are a people different from those two. This fact doesn’t change whether these people are called Ukrainians, Little Russians, Rusyns, whatever.
     

    That Ukraine in overall terms experienced more Polish rule than Russia did isn't an earth shattering missive and doesn't negate the basis for centuries of close Russo-Ukrainian togetherness (albeit with some disruption) going back to Rus - something challenged by dimwits like yourself. (A well deserved payback for your antics at another thread.)

    Countries the world over have regions not having the same exact historical experiences or DNA.

    , @Thorfinnsson

    What differentiates England from Germany? Conquest by French-speaking Normans, which brought with it massive influx of French words, among other changes to the society (such as more Scandinavian-style political culture, the parliamentary system is a Nordic thing). Old English looked like German, after Norman conquest the English language does not.
     

    To this we can add:

    • The North Sea
    • England has been a politically united monarchy for over 1,000 years
    • Germany is Catholic and Lutheran, whereas England is Anglican (who are schismatics rather than true Protestants)
    • Germany was more or less politically divided from the fall of the Hohenstaufens until the Kleindeutsche Lösung resulted in the crowning of Wilhelm I as German Emperor at the Palace of Versailles, and all of Germany was only united from 1938-1945
    • Germany has had many different types of governments including elective monarchies, hereditary monarchies, oligarchic republics (the Free and Imperial Cities), communism, and liberal democracy
    • England has always been a unitary state, Germany was only a unitary state from 1933-1945 and has otherwise been federal or confederal
    • The English are famously empirical and pragmatic, whereas Germans are well-known philosophers
    • The Germans produced classical music, the English produced pop music
    • In addition to 60% of the English language consisting of French, Greek, and Latin words the grammar of English is different than German
    • The English built the world's largest overseas empire and established several daughter countries, the Germans only briefly had an overseas empire which was much smaller. No daughter countries either
    • The English "public school" system is very different from the system of education invented in the Kingdom of Prussia
    • Class is much more salient in England than in Germany
    • The English are known for their humor, the Germans are known for having no sense of humor
    • England is a beer country (though the upper classes long imported wine), whereas Germany is a beer & wine country
    • Gin is the national spirit of England, whereas in Germany it would be schnapps or brandy
    • English sausages have grain in them, German sausages do not
    • England is traditionally a seapower with the world's strongest navy from the early 18th century until 1942; Germany is traditionally a continental power which fielded the strongest army in the world from the time of Roon and Moltke until the debacle at Stalingrad
    • Englishmen like to enjoy nature in the form of "expeditions", whereas Germans enjoy hiking alone
    • Car culture is much stronger in Germany than in the UK
    • The English are more comfortable with free markets than Germans

    You get the point.

    Now as for differences between Russia and the Ukraine:

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they're Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells

    Probably you can come up with more, but nothing on the level of differences between Germany and England.

  88. @A Spaniard
    Your comments usually convey a mixture of defeatism and lack of enthusiasm for the future that I find fairly atypical in younger commenters.

    That's why you sound like you are some kind of middle-aged grumpy German who can only wait hopeless and helpless as his country becomes the ever more powerful centre of the EU multiculti empire.

    Maybe you don't think/feel anything along those lines but it seems to me your comments read like that.

    I’d be more surprised if he wasn’t complaining about the future of the country – how many educated people don’t complain about their country’s politics.

  89. @AaronB
    That depends on the attitude of the next two generations of westerners. If we keep on producing Steve Sailers and people like many of the white commenters on unz, then you are correct.

    So please explain to me your preferred scenario.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    A return to religion in some form, not necessarily Christianity, but an appreciation for the numinous and the supernatural that underlies all phenomena and the unseen bonds that units everything (see quantum mechanics), a return to a moral vision and away from mere instrumentalism, a turn away from individualism and towards appreciation for communal life and the rebuilding of social capital in the form of a unifying culture and sense of shared destiny, identity, origin, and purpose, the renewed appreciation for the aesthetic world view, art, poetry, myth, and legend, and the reduction of logic and rationality to important but limited instruments and as not providing unique access to ultimate truth, based on Kant's demonstration that logic consistently applied ends in absurdity and contradiction, and retaining scientific and technological development but reducing their importance and firmly subordination them to a scale of human values that has total human flourishing as its primary principle, and rejects sacrificing emotional and psychological health to the mere development of our physical abilities.

    But this is too great a leap for the older generation of whites to make. They are like Moses staring at a promised land they cannot enter - we must pity them and have compassion for them, and indulge their naive belief in IQ, the supremacy of Jews, and other simplistic materialisms.
    , @notanon
    he wants an Islamic Europe

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_age_of_Jewish_culture_in_Spain
  90. @AaronB

    Sadly, this is very common with artists, who commonly have narcissistic personality disorder, and believe themselves to be a universal genius.
     
    This is only a commentary on modern western culture, and not inherent to art. Medieval artists were self-effacing, and Chinese artists would meditate to get rid of a sense of self before they began their work.

    Stop projecting modern western sickness. Most modern western art is not of universal human significance precisely because it is narcissistic, and only capable of moving to people who are facing the problems of a very specific period in time and place. In 200 years Dostoevsky , for instance, will be forgotten, but gothic cathedrals (should they still exist), Greek temples, and Chinese landscape painting will still be appreciated. Dostoevsky is only relevant to people caught between tradition and modernity - this is not a universal human theme, and as modernity fades as the "failed app" that it is, Dostoevsky will come to seem a curiosity. I myself, as a creature of this time, deeply appreciate Dostoevsky - but I recognize the need to overcome his relevance. (I am merely using him as a stand in for most modern art).

    The idea that there were not creative narcissists in societies like Ancient China, doing the landscape painting – I would find difficult to believe.

    I agree with the point, that society’s worship of these artistic personalities (or poetic personalities) – as the unique men of genius, with wisdom outside their fields – was something that became more common from the 19th century onwards.

    And sensing their elevation in society, people like novelists, painters and composers, were in some negative sense becoming increasingly megalomaniacal, from the 19th century, with some styling themselves as prophets and seers (even when in reality, they were more often like over-sized childen – as you can quickly discover by reading the biography of your favourite artists/novelists/composers).

    Some of them, like Verdi and Janacek, though – have had a positive impact political culture in their home countries, as contributors in national consciousness.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    Perhaps - but the entire culture discouraged it, and the theory and philosophy of art was entirely different and not conducive to it. You were not meant to express your unique individuality, as the western notion of the genius would have it, nor were you meant to seek novelty, but to empty yourself and become a vehicle for a universal spirit. A highly developed sense of individuality was considered to stand in the way. You were supposed to engage in moral purification before you ever put brush to canvas.

    You are right about the problem becoming acute in the 19th century - but that was the culmination of the move towards individual ego, and we have been living since in the demoralizing aftermath, with each decade breaking down some principle of unity and greater purpose and rendering us demoralized atoms, confused, alone, severed from any larger whole - individualists, in short.
  91. @Bardon Kaldian
    I think you both are right- partially. Greatest writers, in their best works, possess wisdom (or, in Dostoevsky's case, something prophetic- although not in ordinary sense (E.M.Forster had written about this).

    https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/41gAKOhM0sL._SX327_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

    WITH prophecy in the narrow sense of foretelling the future we have no concern, and we have not much concern with it as an appeal for righteousness. What will interest us today—what we must respond to, for interest now becomes an inappropriate word—is an accent in the novelist’s voice, an accent for which the flutes and saxophones of fantasy may have prepared us. His theme is the universe, or something universal, but he is not necessarily going to “say” anything about the universe; he proposes to sing, and the strangeness of song arising in the halls of fiction is bound to give us a shock.
     


    Prophecy—in our sense—is a tone of voice. It may imply any of the faiths that have haunted humanity—Christianity, Buddhism, dualism, Satanism, or the mere raising of human love and hatred to such a power that their normal receptacles no longer contain them: but what particular view of the universe is recommended—with that we are not directly concerned.
     

    Now what is the difference in these passages—a difference that throbs in every phrase? It is that the first writer is a preacher, and the second a prophet. George Eliot talks about God, but never alters her focus; God and the tables and chairs are all in the same plane, and in consequence we have not for a moment the feeling that the whole universe needs pity and love—they are only needed in Hetty’s cell. In Dostoevsky the characters and situations always stand for more than themselves; infinity attends them; though yet they remain individuals they expand to embrace it and summon it to embrace them; one can apply to them the saying of St. Catherine of Siena that God is in the soul and the soul is in God as the sea is in the fish and the fish is in the sea. Every sentence he writes implies this extension, and the implication is the dominant aspect of his work. He is a great novelist in the ordinary sense—that is to say his characters have relation to ordinary life and also live in their own surroundings, there are incidents which keep us excited, and so on; he has also the greatness of a prophet, to which our ordinary standards are inapplicable.
     


    Mitya is a round character, but he is capable of extension. He does not conceal anything (mysticism), he does not mean anything (symbolism), he is merely Dmitri Karamazov, but to be merely a person in Dostoevsky is to join up with all the other people far back. Consequently the tremendous current suddenly flows—for me in those closing words: “I’ve had a good dream, gentlemen.” Have I had that good dream too? No, Dostoevsky’s characters ask us to share something deeper than their experiences. They convey to us a sensation that is partly physical—the sensation of sinking into a translucent globe and seeing our experience floating far above us on its surface, tiny, remote, yet ours. We have not ceased to be people, we have given nothing up, but “the sea is in the fish and the fish is in the sea.
     
    Back to the topic.

    I don't think that great philosophers, even those realist enough (Aristotle, Hobbes, sometimes Kant,..) had much to offer re politics & society. True, their critique was frequently healthy (for instance, Aristotle's critique of realities of Plato's idealized Sparta), but even those considered to be experienced & empiricist, like Bertrand Russell, were limited by their strong personal inclinations & ideas.

    It seems usually the work of art itself – with its own interior logic – that contains wisdom though, rather than the artist; and often a novel can be spoiled by self-conscious preaching by authors.

    This is very much of the case of Tolstoy, who is best – and conveys stronger moral message – when he lets the creation speak for itself.

    Of course, in all this, the artists themselves are often more unwise, selfish and immoral in their own life than the average person, even as the same artists can produce works with the opposite qualities.

    It has a lot do with the process and discipline of the work itself forcing the artist to give it (the work) objective qualities. The artist itself can be, and in great art usually is, very different to the work that they manage to produce, and which is often a compensation of all they are not (as when narcissistic womanizer like Puccini, gives the greatest empathy to the situation of female characters in his work).

  92. @anony-mouse
    I am very pleased that so many people here (again and again) don't like that that book hasn't been translated into English.

    After all if anyone really wanted to make a translation of that book they could.

    1/ Get the rights
    2/ Translate it
    3/ Get the book printed-there are a lot of book printers.
    4/ Get an ISBN # (not a necessity but it helps)
    5/ Sell it

    Of course most people here are folowers of the paleo Cantdo spirit. Complain, complain, complain. That's it

    You say that as this is a thread literally of someone translating Russian thought into English.

  93. @Bardon Kaldian
    Dostoevsky is one of the few supreme writers, along with Homer, Aeschylus, Dante, Shakespeare & some others. Not more than 7-10 people belong to that category (great writers like Flaubert, Conrad, Faulkner,.. are more numerous).

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.

    Dostoevsky was (in a whole) quite adequate. In this regard, he was the complete opposite of Leo Tolstoy.

  94. @AP

    Now we’re back to akshually, the Ukraine was also dominated by Poland.
     
    Facts are facts.

    What differentiates England from Germany? Conquest by French-speaking Normans, which brought with it massive influx of French words, among other changes to the society (such as more Scandinavian-style political culture, the parliamentary system is a Nordic thing). Old English looked like German, after Norman conquest the English language does not.

    Ukraine experienced the a similar phenomenon due to centuries of Polish rule and settlement. The only difference is that because all three peoples are Slavs Ukrainians are more like Poles and Russians than English are like French or Germans.

    Russians didn't have this. So the two peoples are not the same. OTOH, the natives of Ukraine are not Poles either. They are a people different from those two. This fact doesn't change whether these people are called Ukrainians, Little Russians, Rusyns, whatever.

    Ukraine experienced the a similar phenomenon due to centuries of Polish rule and settlement. The only difference is that because all three peoples are Slavs Ukrainians are more like Poles and Russians than English are like French or Germans.

    Russians didn’t have this. So the two peoples are not the same. OTOH, the natives of Ukraine are not Poles either. They are a people different from those two. This fact doesn’t change whether these people are called Ukrainians, Little Russians, Rusyns, whatever.

    That Ukraine in overall terms experienced more Polish rule than Russia did isn’t an earth shattering missive and doesn’t negate the basis for centuries of close Russo-Ukrainian togetherness (albeit with some disruption) going back to Rus – something challenged by dimwits like yourself. (A well deserved payback for your antics at another thread.)

    Countries the world over have regions not having the same exact historical experiences or DNA.

  95. @for-the-record
    So please explain to me your preferred scenario.

    A return to religion in some form, not necessarily Christianity, but an appreciation for the numinous and the supernatural that underlies all phenomena and the unseen bonds that units everything (see quantum mechanics), a return to a moral vision and away from mere instrumentalism, a turn away from individualism and towards appreciation for communal life and the rebuilding of social capital in the form of a unifying culture and sense of shared destiny, identity, origin, and purpose, the renewed appreciation for the aesthetic world view, art, poetry, myth, and legend, and the reduction of logic and rationality to important but limited instruments and as not providing unique access to ultimate truth, based on Kant’s demonstration that logic consistently applied ends in absurdity and contradiction, and retaining scientific and technological development but reducing their importance and firmly subordination them to a scale of human values that has total human flourishing as its primary principle, and rejects sacrificing emotional and psychological health to the mere development of our physical abilities.

    But this is too great a leap for the older generation of whites to make. They are like Moses staring at a promised land they cannot enter – we must pity them and have compassion for them, and indulge their naive belief in IQ, the supremacy of Jews, and other simplistic materialisms.

    • Replies: @Talha
    Beautiful summary - I hope people read that and I certainly hope that kind of a vision of the future prevails. And if it is the most conducive to human life (and flourishing in its comprehensive understanding) - it necessarily must. As you imply, it is axiomatic.

    Peace.
    , @for-the-record
    But this is too great a leap for the older generation of whites to make. They are like Moses staring at a promised land they cannot enter – we must pity them and have compassion for them, and indulge their naive belief in IQ, the supremacy of Jews, and other simplistic materialisms.

    This is really over the top, in my opinion, but then I of course am a member of that class of people, at least in terms of age, that you just can't wait to be rid of.

    Good luck with your brave new world, I don't envy you.
  96. @AaronB
    That depends on the attitude of the next two generations of westerners. If we keep on producing Steve Sailers and people like many of the white commenters on unz, then you are correct.

    If we keep on producing Steve Sailers

    Pray tell, what will be the result if we keep on producing Aarons B?

    😉

    • Replies: @AaronB
    Joy, bliss, and hope :)

    But I too am merely transitional figure. A healthy society would not produce a person like me.
  97. @Dmitry
    The idea that there were not creative narcissists in societies like Ancient China, doing the landscape painting - I would find difficult to believe.

    I agree with the point, that society's worship of these artistic personalities (or poetic personalities) - as the unique men of genius, with wisdom outside their fields - was something that became more common from the 19th century onwards.

    And sensing their elevation in society, people like novelists, painters and composers, were in some negative sense becoming increasingly megalomaniacal, from the 19th century, with some styling themselves as prophets and seers (even when in reality, they were more often like over-sized childen - as you can quickly discover by reading the biography of your favourite artists/novelists/composers).

    Some of them, like Verdi and Janacek, though - have had a positive impact political culture in their home countries, as contributors in national consciousness.

    Perhaps – but the entire culture discouraged it, and the theory and philosophy of art was entirely different and not conducive to it. You were not meant to express your unique individuality, as the western notion of the genius would have it, nor were you meant to seek novelty, but to empty yourself and become a vehicle for a universal spirit. A highly developed sense of individuality was considered to stand in the way. You were supposed to engage in moral purification before you ever put brush to canvas.

    You are right about the problem becoming acute in the 19th century – but that was the culmination of the move towards individual ego, and we have been living since in the demoralizing aftermath, with each decade breaking down some principle of unity and greater purpose and rendering us demoralized atoms, confused, alone, severed from any larger whole – individualists, in short.

  98. @Anon

    If we keep on producing Steve Sailers
     
    Pray tell, what will be the result if we keep on producing Aarons B?

    ;)

    Joy, bliss, and hope 🙂

    But I too am merely transitional figure. A healthy society would not produce a person like me.

    • Replies: @Dmitry

    Joy, bliss, and hope :)

    But I too am merely transitional figure. A healthy society would not produce a person like me.
     
    I think this 'healthy/unhealthy' is illusion from any wide perspective. You could be dismissing your life experience, with some illusion of some imaginary society in a future that you will never experience, never be belonging to, or even know if it will or will not occur. As far as you are concerned, this - 21st century - is your only time and society.

    You were born in certain historical time and place, society - and for all we know there is only one dimension of existence, and you probably only have single opportunity of living on earth and human civilization. To the extent you won't experience them, the other societies are just imaginary - future ones even more than Ancient China, or pre-Colombus Incan society Sure part of the enjoyment of being comes from complaining and describing all the different problems of our society... but at some point also have to be honest, that it is just distraction oneself to compare with imaginary futures you won't be alive, let alone young, to take part in.
  99. @Verymuchalive
    " If Christianity goes, all of our culture goes with it." - TS Eliot
    If you don't realise this, you really are an idiot.

    If you don’t realise this, you really are an idiot.

    That’s kind of harsh. German_reader was asking a serious and thoughtful question which deserved a serious and thoughtful response, not just an insult. Realize that a lot of people out there are going to have exactly the same question. If we don’t have a decent answer for it, we’re going to have a lot of trouble selling White identitarianism to White agnostics/atheists.

  100. @AP
    Sarmatism:

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

    Indeed. The combination of historical Polish-Lithuanian notables loving to LARP as Turkics (up to the point of an Armenian-Turk immigrant setting up Slutsk sash production in the area of modern-day Belorussia and the existence of the Belorussian Arabic alphabet) and modern day Poles/Lithuanians going on about how they are Europeans while Russians are the political and cultural descendants of the Horde is highly amusing and ironic.

    • Agree: AP
    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    You might get a kick out of reading about 'Sadik Pasha':

    'Michał Czajkowski (Ukrainian: Mykhailo Chaikovsky; 29 September 1804 – 18 January 1886[1]), also known in Turkey as Mehmet Sadyk Pasha (Turkish: Mehmet Sadık Paşa), was a Polish writer and political émigré of distant Cossack heritage who worked both for the resurrection of Poland and also for the reestablishment of a Cossack state.
     
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Micha%C5%82_Czajkowski
  101. Realize that a lot of people out there are going to have exactly the same question.

    I know this is just political posturing but if politicians find it useful it must mean that many Germans to whom they try to appeal already found the answer. Not all Germans are cucks. This is a good news but most likely will be defeated on the usual grounds with approving nod from the cucks.

    Bavaria orders Christian crosses to be hung at the entrance of ALL government buildings

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5655467/German-state-orders-Christian-crosses-hung-entrance-government-buildings.html#ixzz5DipYBMt1

    • Replies: @German_reader
    lol, you're really gullible, utu.
    The thing with the crosses in public buildings is just theatre for the Bavarian state election in fall...it's completely meaningless. The borders remain open, nobody is turned away or deported, and the CSU isn't serious about changing this.
    I wrote about this already in the Armenia thread (which has already gone completely off-topic because nobody cares about Armenia). Won't comment on it in this thread anymore, since this should be about Solzhenitsyn.
  102. @AaronB
    As for the article itself - simply brilliant.

    I'm impressed, Anatoly, at the growth in your views. Was not expecting it.

    You are still young enough, apparently, to grow, and participate in the coming turn away from the enlightenment death cult and towards health and sanity (and yes, I know you're still a staunch supporter of technology and all that).

    The older generation of whites, the Steve Sailers, John Derbyshires, German Readers, Bardon Karolians, and honestly perhaps the majority of undoubtedly highly intelligent white commenters on this blog, while certainly not bad people, are nevertheless too tainted by the death cult and must quietly die off - God willing peacefully and of natural causes - before any kind of revitalization can occur.

    Let us do what we can, and wait patiently.

    and yes, I know you’re still a staunch supporter of technology and all that

    “Yes I love technology,
    But not as much as you, you see,
    But I still love technology,
    Always and forever”

    Peace.

  103. @utu

    Realize that a lot of people out there are going to have exactly the same question.
     
    I know this is just political posturing but if politicians find it useful it must mean that many Germans to whom they try to appeal already found the answer. Not all Germans are cucks. This is a good news but most likely will be defeated on the usual grounds with approving nod from the cucks.

    Bavaria orders Christian crosses to be hung at the entrance of ALL government buildings

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5655467/German-state-orders-Christian-crosses-hung-entrance-government-buildings.html#ixzz5DipYBMt1

    lol, you’re really gullible, utu.
    The thing with the crosses in public buildings is just theatre for the Bavarian state election in fall…it’s completely meaningless. The borders remain open, nobody is turned away or deported, and the CSU isn’t serious about changing this.
    I wrote about this already in the Armenia thread (which has already gone completely off-topic because nobody cares about Armenia). Won’t comment on it in this thread anymore, since this should be about Solzhenitsyn.

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
    Well, at least the vampires can't enter government buildings now.
  104. GFY. I said it was political posturing. And that this is a good sign. GFY.

  105. @German_reader
    lol, you're really gullible, utu.
    The thing with the crosses in public buildings is just theatre for the Bavarian state election in fall...it's completely meaningless. The borders remain open, nobody is turned away or deported, and the CSU isn't serious about changing this.
    I wrote about this already in the Armenia thread (which has already gone completely off-topic because nobody cares about Armenia). Won't comment on it in this thread anymore, since this should be about Solzhenitsyn.

    Well, at least the vampires can’t enter government buildings now.

    • Replies: @German_reader
    Unless they're from the Vampire the masquerade setting!
  106. @Daniel Chieh
    Well, at least the vampires can't enter government buildings now.

    Unless they’re from the Vampire the masquerade setting!

  107. @Bardon Kaldian
    Solzhenitsyn was a false prophet (actually- most, if not all prophets are false). His world-view is, contrary to the author's claims, as irrelevant as Gandhi's vision of India. It was dated even when it came out.

    Solzhenitsyn will, I think, endure as the author of two remarkable novels in classic, 19th C realist tradition.

    “the author of two remarkable novels”

    What’s the one that isn’t “August 1914”?

  108. @AaronB
    A return to religion in some form, not necessarily Christianity, but an appreciation for the numinous and the supernatural that underlies all phenomena and the unseen bonds that units everything (see quantum mechanics), a return to a moral vision and away from mere instrumentalism, a turn away from individualism and towards appreciation for communal life and the rebuilding of social capital in the form of a unifying culture and sense of shared destiny, identity, origin, and purpose, the renewed appreciation for the aesthetic world view, art, poetry, myth, and legend, and the reduction of logic and rationality to important but limited instruments and as not providing unique access to ultimate truth, based on Kant's demonstration that logic consistently applied ends in absurdity and contradiction, and retaining scientific and technological development but reducing their importance and firmly subordination them to a scale of human values that has total human flourishing as its primary principle, and rejects sacrificing emotional and psychological health to the mere development of our physical abilities.

    But this is too great a leap for the older generation of whites to make. They are like Moses staring at a promised land they cannot enter - we must pity them and have compassion for them, and indulge their naive belief in IQ, the supremacy of Jews, and other simplistic materialisms.

    Beautiful summary – I hope people read that and I certainly hope that kind of a vision of the future prevails. And if it is the most conducive to human life (and flourishing in its comprehensive understanding) – it necessarily must. As you imply, it is axiomatic.

    Peace.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    Since it's the only way human life can flourish, it will inevitably return - just not for the current generation.

    My mistake before was to seperate earthly flourishing from spiritual flourishing - if you do that, then all sorts of nightmare scenarios emerge where the materialists may rule forever and make this world a place of endless dreariness.

    What should have been obvious - and what is becoming increasingly obvious, is that earthy thriving is a function of spiritual health. My recent engagement with modern Asian culture has brought this lesson home - the more I dabbled even in Asian pop culture, the more surprised and shocked I was to discover a level of moral and spiritual health that I didn't think existed in 2018 in modernized countries that are technological powerhouses. The picture is far from perfect, but I was still shocked at how pure and innocent so much of their culture still is, as opposed to our corrosive irony and materialism.

    I would not be surprised to find purity and innocence and spiritual health in Yemen, because I thought these things are incompatible with modernity. But I now see that any kind of physical flourishing - whether in Yemen as a healthy organic community that preserves and perpetuates itself - or in Japan, which has adopted technology, depends on spiritual health.

    Right now there is an epidemic of ill health in America - obesity, general ill health, anxiety, psychosomatic symptoms of all kinds - I can't tell you how many apparently healthy people I know who seem to be physically declining in some weird way, who seem to always be complaining about their health, and to have all sorts of strange anxieties.

    And this is among the elite striving class here in New York, which is supposed to be healthy (obesity doesn't exist here, at least). The other day I was just struck by how weird it all was, how I never hear this stuff in other countries, especially Asian ones.

    It struck me that our world views may have serious effects on our physical being - materialism may actually lead to physical decline, and I started thinking about how physical flourishing here on earth seems fundamentally connected to healthy spirituality in general, and all sorts of examples started popping into my head....
  109. @Anatoly Karlin
    Indeed. The combination of historical Polish-Lithuanian notables loving to LARP as Turkics (up to the point of an Armenian-Turk immigrant setting up Slutsk sash production in the area of modern-day Belorussia and the existence of the Belorussian Arabic alphabet) and modern day Poles/Lithuanians going on about how they are Europeans while Russians are the political and cultural descendants of the Horde is highly amusing and ironic.

    You might get a kick out of reading about ‘Sadik Pasha’:

    ‘Michał Czajkowski (Ukrainian: Mykhailo Chaikovsky; 29 September 1804 – 18 January 1886[1]), also known in Turkey as Mehmet Sadyk Pasha (Turkish: Mehmet Sadık Paşa), was a Polish writer and political émigré of distant Cossack heritage who worked both for the resurrection of Poland and also for the reestablishment of a Cossack state.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Micha%C5%82_Czajkowski

  110. @AP

    Now we’re back to akshually, the Ukraine was also dominated by Poland.
     
    Facts are facts.

    What differentiates England from Germany? Conquest by French-speaking Normans, which brought with it massive influx of French words, among other changes to the society (such as more Scandinavian-style political culture, the parliamentary system is a Nordic thing). Old English looked like German, after Norman conquest the English language does not.

    Ukraine experienced the a similar phenomenon due to centuries of Polish rule and settlement. The only difference is that because all three peoples are Slavs Ukrainians are more like Poles and Russians than English are like French or Germans.

    Russians didn't have this. So the two peoples are not the same. OTOH, the natives of Ukraine are not Poles either. They are a people different from those two. This fact doesn't change whether these people are called Ukrainians, Little Russians, Rusyns, whatever.

    What differentiates England from Germany? Conquest by French-speaking Normans, which brought with it massive influx of French words, among other changes to the society (such as more Scandinavian-style political culture, the parliamentary system is a Nordic thing). Old English looked like German, after Norman conquest the English language does not.

    To this we can add:

    • The North Sea
    • England has been a politically united monarchy for over 1,000 years
    • Germany is Catholic and Lutheran, whereas England is Anglican (who are schismatics rather than true Protestants)
    • Germany was more or less politically divided from the fall of the Hohenstaufens until the Kleindeutsche Lösung resulted in the crowning of Wilhelm I as German Emperor at the Palace of Versailles, and all of Germany was only united from 1938-1945
    • Germany has had many different types of governments including elective monarchies, hereditary monarchies, oligarchic republics (the Free and Imperial Cities), communism, and liberal democracy
    • England has always been a unitary state, Germany was only a unitary state from 1933-1945 and has otherwise been federal or confederal
    • The English are famously empirical and pragmatic, whereas Germans are well-known philosophers
    • The Germans produced classical music, the English produced pop music
    • In addition to 60% of the English language consisting of French, Greek, and Latin words the grammar of English is different than German
    • The English built the world’s largest overseas empire and established several daughter countries, the Germans only briefly had an overseas empire which was much smaller. No daughter countries either
    • The English “public school” system is very different from the system of education invented in the Kingdom of Prussia
    • Class is much more salient in England than in Germany
    • The English are known for their humor, the Germans are known for having no sense of humor
    • England is a beer country (though the upper classes long imported wine), whereas Germany is a beer & wine country
    • Gin is the national spirit of England, whereas in Germany it would be schnapps or brandy
    • English sausages have grain in them, German sausages do not
    • England is traditionally a seapower with the world’s strongest navy from the early 18th century until 1942; Germany is traditionally a continental power which fielded the strongest army in the world from the time of Roon and Moltke until the debacle at Stalingrad
    • Englishmen like to enjoy nature in the form of “expeditions”, whereas Germans enjoy hiking alone
    • Car culture is much stronger in Germany than in the UK
    • The English are more comfortable with free markets than Germans

    You get the point.

    Now as for differences between Russia and the Ukraine:

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they’re Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells

    Probably you can come up with more, but nothing on the level of differences between Germany and England.

    • Replies: @AP

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they’re Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells
     
    * politically, Ukrainians prefer plurality (which can become chaotic) whereas Russian instinct is to gravitate towards an autocratic ruler
    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
    *Ukrainian folk music quite different and more complex, using different instruments
    * Carol of the Bells is the only cultural achievement any Westerner such as you has heard of, there is a rich musical tradition
    *Ukrainians much more traditionally moralistic (lower divorce, abortion rates)
    *Ukrainians much more church-going
    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)
    , @jilles dykstra
    The united kingdom falling apart no longer is theoretical.
    UK is England, Scotland and Wales, and, still, N Ireland, Ulster.
  111. @Talha
    Beautiful summary - I hope people read that and I certainly hope that kind of a vision of the future prevails. And if it is the most conducive to human life (and flourishing in its comprehensive understanding) - it necessarily must. As you imply, it is axiomatic.

    Peace.

    Since it’s the only way human life can flourish, it will inevitably return – just not for the current generation.

    My mistake before was to seperate earthly flourishing from spiritual flourishing – if you do that, then all sorts of nightmare scenarios emerge where the materialists may rule forever and make this world a place of endless dreariness.

    What should have been obvious – and what is becoming increasingly obvious, is that earthy thriving is a function of spiritual health. My recent engagement with modern Asian culture has brought this lesson home – the more I dabbled even in Asian pop culture, the more surprised and shocked I was to discover a level of moral and spiritual health that I didn’t think existed in 2018 in modernized countries that are technological powerhouses. The picture is far from perfect, but I was still shocked at how pure and innocent so much of their culture still is, as opposed to our corrosive irony and materialism.

    I would not be surprised to find purity and innocence and spiritual health in Yemen, because I thought these things are incompatible with modernity. But I now see that any kind of physical flourishing – whether in Yemen as a healthy organic community that preserves and perpetuates itself – or in Japan, which has adopted technology, depends on spiritual health.

    Right now there is an epidemic of ill health in America – obesity, general ill health, anxiety, psychosomatic symptoms of all kinds – I can’t tell you how many apparently healthy people I know who seem to be physically declining in some weird way, who seem to always be complaining about their health, and to have all sorts of strange anxieties.

    And this is among the elite striving class here in New York, which is supposed to be healthy (obesity doesn’t exist here, at least). The other day I was just struck by how weird it all was, how I never hear this stuff in other countries, especially Asian ones.

    It struck me that our world views may have serious effects on our physical being – materialism may actually lead to physical decline, and I started thinking about how physical flourishing here on earth seems fundamentally connected to healthy spirituality in general, and all sorts of examples started popping into my head….

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson

    And this is among the elite striving class here in New York, which is supposed to be healthy (obesity doesn’t exist here, at least). The other day I was just struck by how weird it all was, how I never hear this stuff in other countries, especially Asian ones.

    It struck me that our world views may have serious effects on our physical being – materialism may actually lead to physical decline, and I started thinking about how physical flourishing here on earth seems fundamentally connected to healthy spirituality in general, and all sorts of examples started popping into my head….
     

    Upper class Americans aren't that healthy to begin with imo. Few of them lift weights or sprint (lots of endurance training instead), and a decent number are conned by the low fat fraud (and the rearguard "healthy fats" fraud). Some even become vegetarians or vegans. Some of them benefit from the health halo I guess which could be a good placebo. Prescription usage is rife in this class just as with the proles, and the older ones are mostly on statins (including the President).

    They just avoid binge drinking, tobacco, and heroin. They also have actual meals instead of endless snacking, and they don't put off going to the doctor when they need to.

    Would also add that Americans of all classes have terrible sleep habits.

    Not that I disagree with your primary point. Embracing the alt-right/redpill/HBD or whatever you want to call it has made me healthier for sure. How can you be truly healthy if you're ashamed of yourself? Accepting the poz is basically telling yourself that you're evil and need to die. The body reacts accordingly.

    , @Talha

    My mistake before was to seperate earthly flourishing from spiritual flourishing
     
    Right! There has to be a balance. Even too much spiritual without proper attention paid to the earthly will not give good results. For instance, if monasticism is part of a small number of people, that is manageable. If it spreads throughout society and becomes the pattern of life too many people choose, your society will fail.

    and to have all sorts of strange anxieties
     
    My spiritual teachers have mentioned that the majority of these cases of depression and anxiety that peoplle complain about is due to lack of spiritual health. Sure, you get true cases where someone's physical chemical constitution is at imbalance, but the majority of people are simply exhibiting a normal symptom. They have neglected their spirit and it is gasping for air it's sending distress signals which manifest themselves in physical symptoms. To get medication to mask the symptom is the wrong approach because your body is simply reflecting your spiritual state.

    physical flourishing here on earth seems fundamentally connected to healthy spirituality
     
    Agreed. You mentioned Yemen. One of my roommates form UCLA went to go study at this institution:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5KmlI0bb_H4

    In fact, he knows the young man from the US they interviewed (he is now a scholar and travels through the US to teach). Anyway, my friend mentioned it was a surreal place. Life was on the tough side, but people were genuinely at peace and content.

    Peace.

    Note: Your mentioning technology and melding it with the spirit also reminded me of another city in that same area of Yemen. They would have been very impressive to almost anybody from around the world 5 centuries ago:
    "The tall cluster of sun-dried mud brick tower houses of the 16th century walled city of Shibam, which rises out of the cliff edge of Wadi Hadramaut has been described as a 'Manhattan' or 'Chicago' of the desert. Located at an important caravan halt on the spice and incense route across the Southern Arabian plateau, the city of dwellings up to seven storeys high developed on a fortified, rectangular grid plan of streets and squares."
    https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/192/gallery/

    Also other beautiful mud-brick architecture from the area called Hadramaut (literally, "Death has arrived"):
    http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1174/5146694697_46e32f0155_b.jpg
    https://i.pinimg.com/564x/52/74/a3/5274a3611dda75464d6d8d6158ceae33.jpg
  112. @AaronB
    Since it's the only way human life can flourish, it will inevitably return - just not for the current generation.

    My mistake before was to seperate earthly flourishing from spiritual flourishing - if you do that, then all sorts of nightmare scenarios emerge where the materialists may rule forever and make this world a place of endless dreariness.

    What should have been obvious - and what is becoming increasingly obvious, is that earthy thriving is a function of spiritual health. My recent engagement with modern Asian culture has brought this lesson home - the more I dabbled even in Asian pop culture, the more surprised and shocked I was to discover a level of moral and spiritual health that I didn't think existed in 2018 in modernized countries that are technological powerhouses. The picture is far from perfect, but I was still shocked at how pure and innocent so much of their culture still is, as opposed to our corrosive irony and materialism.

    I would not be surprised to find purity and innocence and spiritual health in Yemen, because I thought these things are incompatible with modernity. But I now see that any kind of physical flourishing - whether in Yemen as a healthy organic community that preserves and perpetuates itself - or in Japan, which has adopted technology, depends on spiritual health.

    Right now there is an epidemic of ill health in America - obesity, general ill health, anxiety, psychosomatic symptoms of all kinds - I can't tell you how many apparently healthy people I know who seem to be physically declining in some weird way, who seem to always be complaining about their health, and to have all sorts of strange anxieties.

    And this is among the elite striving class here in New York, which is supposed to be healthy (obesity doesn't exist here, at least). The other day I was just struck by how weird it all was, how I never hear this stuff in other countries, especially Asian ones.

    It struck me that our world views may have serious effects on our physical being - materialism may actually lead to physical decline, and I started thinking about how physical flourishing here on earth seems fundamentally connected to healthy spirituality in general, and all sorts of examples started popping into my head....

    And this is among the elite striving class here in New York, which is supposed to be healthy (obesity doesn’t exist here, at least). The other day I was just struck by how weird it all was, how I never hear this stuff in other countries, especially Asian ones.

    It struck me that our world views may have serious effects on our physical being – materialism may actually lead to physical decline, and I started thinking about how physical flourishing here on earth seems fundamentally connected to healthy spirituality in general, and all sorts of examples started popping into my head….

    Upper class Americans aren’t that healthy to begin with imo. Few of them lift weights or sprint (lots of endurance training instead), and a decent number are conned by the low fat fraud (and the rearguard “healthy fats” fraud). Some even become vegetarians or vegans. Some of them benefit from the health halo I guess which could be a good placebo. Prescription usage is rife in this class just as with the proles, and the older ones are mostly on statins (including the President).

    They just avoid binge drinking, tobacco, and heroin. They also have actual meals instead of endless snacking, and they don’t put off going to the doctor when they need to.

    Would also add that Americans of all classes have terrible sleep habits.

    Not that I disagree with your primary point. Embracing the alt-right/redpill/HBD or whatever you want to call it has made me healthier for sure. How can you be truly healthy if you’re ashamed of yourself? Accepting the poz is basically telling yourself that you’re evil and need to die. The body reacts accordingly.

    • Replies: @AaronB

    How can you be truly healthy if you’re ashamed of yourself? Accepting the poz is basically telling yourself that you’re evil and need to die. The body reacts accordingly.
     
    Definitely a lot of truth in that. I also think disconnecting from others - no family or community, even in your mind - may lead to physical decline as well.

    People drink a fair amount here in ny, and anecdotally it seems like 50% of the white population smokes, definitely among the hipsters, although I doubt that's substantiated by official figures (maybe people lie).

    But in Japan people binge drink like crazy and smoke a ton, and they're one of the healthiest countries around. We're probably a bit too Puritan about this stuff - but really I think you have to look at drinking and smoking as part of a total lifestyle. Japanese work hard and drink hard - somehow that provides balance, even if not optimal, and they stay thin and eat well. And they dont hate themselves. Somehow binge drinking in America leads to serious health issues.

    There's this wonderful Chinese story of the Seven Sages Of The Bamboo Grove, basically Taoist sages who retired from the world and drank like fishes from the afternoon on. Drinking can be a part of spiritual practice, though Talha won't like to hear it :)

    There's something seriously death cultish in the American war on pleasure and obsession with work. But everything must be seen as part of a totality. In another context limiting pleasure may be quite healthy and spiritually necessary.
    , @Mikhail
    In the US, there has (in recent years) been an increased popularity in cross fit gyms, including the so-called HIT (High Intensity Training) method.

    It's fascinating to simultaneously see an increase in gyms throughout the US, while also seeing the overall negative health stats on Americans when it comes to obesity and diabetes.

  113. @Thorfinnsson

    And this is among the elite striving class here in New York, which is supposed to be healthy (obesity doesn’t exist here, at least). The other day I was just struck by how weird it all was, how I never hear this stuff in other countries, especially Asian ones.

    It struck me that our world views may have serious effects on our physical being – materialism may actually lead to physical decline, and I started thinking about how physical flourishing here on earth seems fundamentally connected to healthy spirituality in general, and all sorts of examples started popping into my head….
     

    Upper class Americans aren't that healthy to begin with imo. Few of them lift weights or sprint (lots of endurance training instead), and a decent number are conned by the low fat fraud (and the rearguard "healthy fats" fraud). Some even become vegetarians or vegans. Some of them benefit from the health halo I guess which could be a good placebo. Prescription usage is rife in this class just as with the proles, and the older ones are mostly on statins (including the President).

    They just avoid binge drinking, tobacco, and heroin. They also have actual meals instead of endless snacking, and they don't put off going to the doctor when they need to.

    Would also add that Americans of all classes have terrible sleep habits.

    Not that I disagree with your primary point. Embracing the alt-right/redpill/HBD or whatever you want to call it has made me healthier for sure. How can you be truly healthy if you're ashamed of yourself? Accepting the poz is basically telling yourself that you're evil and need to die. The body reacts accordingly.

    How can you be truly healthy if you’re ashamed of yourself? Accepting the poz is basically telling yourself that you’re evil and need to die. The body reacts accordingly.

    Definitely a lot of truth in that. I also think disconnecting from others – no family or community, even in your mind – may lead to physical decline as well.

    People drink a fair amount here in ny, and anecdotally it seems like 50% of the white population smokes, definitely among the hipsters, although I doubt that’s substantiated by official figures (maybe people lie).

    But in Japan people binge drink like crazy and smoke a ton, and they’re one of the healthiest countries around. We’re probably a bit too Puritan about this stuff – but really I think you have to look at drinking and smoking as part of a total lifestyle. Japanese work hard and drink hard – somehow that provides balance, even if not optimal, and they stay thin and eat well. And they dont hate themselves. Somehow binge drinking in America leads to serious health issues.

    There’s this wonderful Chinese story of the Seven Sages Of The Bamboo Grove, basically Taoist sages who retired from the world and drank like fishes from the afternoon on. Drinking can be a part of spiritual practice, though Talha won’t like to hear it 🙂

    There’s something seriously death cultish in the American war on pleasure and obsession with work. But everything must be seen as part of a totality. In another context limiting pleasure may be quite healthy and spiritually necessary.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson

    People drink a fair amount here in ny, and anecdotally it seems like 50% of the white population smokes, definitely among the hipsters, although I doubt that’s substantiated by official figures (maybe people lie).

    But in Japan people binge drink like crazy and smoke a ton, and they’re one of the healthiest countries around. We’re probably a bit too Puritan about this stuff – but really I think you have to look at drinking and smoking as part of a total lifestyle. Japanese work hard and drink hard – somehow that provides balance, even if not optimal, and they stay thin and eat well. And they dont hate themselves. Somehow binge drinking in America leads to serious health issues.
     

    I am an alcoholic and do not drink anymore. I do plan to attempt moderate drinking next year. Drinking has led me into fairly serious criminal trouble. Fortunately I escaped any serious medical trouble. Strangely I was a moderate drinker until age 24 (did not get blasted even as a teenager) and then turned into an incredibly heavy drinker.

    Drinking in America peaked in 1980 and then went into decline until the turn of the millenium, after which it started increasing again. There has been a big cultural change on drinking in this century compared to the 90s. A great example is Whole Foods. Pretty common to see housewives drinking a glass of wine at 2pm while shopping. I don't think this is healthy.

    Japan is healthy in spite of its drinking and smoking, not because of it. It's illegal to be fat in Japan (seriously, you get fined) which likely has a lot to do with it. And like you said their mental health may be better. They are surrounded by fellow Japanese and aren't ashamed. Not much commuting either.

    That said smoking, while unhealthy, is not quite as unhealthy as they would have you believe. 85% of smokers never develop lung cancer, and research in the 70s suggested up to four cigarettes per day was harmless other than diminished lung capacity (and getting uglier).

    Alcohol is well known to reduce cardiovascular disease and as such is positively associated with longer lifespans. In fact even heavy drinkers outlive non-drinkers, though non-drinkers include former alcoholics with failing livers which is probably why.

    If you do enough binge drinking you will kill yourself. To be clear I am not talking about Japanese drinking culture here. I'm talking drinking a handle of whiskey every day.

    There’s something seriously death cultish in the American war on pleasure and obsession with work. But everything must be seen as part of a totality. In another context limiting pleasure may be quite healthy and spiritually necessary.
     

    I also don't agree we're too puritan about drinking (smoking, sure, though there is a public health benefit to that, plus don't forget smoking makes women ugly). Drinking is everywhere in America, as is binge drinking. College in America is basically four years of binge drinking.

    I'm in favor of the American obsession with work. But I am against commuting (I live two miles from the plant) and helicopter parenting. You put those three things together and it's just too much--something's gotta give.

    Also, you're thinking about our own class here (as am I wrt helicopter parenting). Working class Americans aren't obsessed with work, and they also don't helicopter parent. Working class Americans also like to play hard--it's not just something they do in their teens and 20s. Their lower impulse control means their families are pretty disordered these days unfortunately.

    , @Talha

    Drinking can be a part of spiritual practice, though Talha won’t like to hear it
     
    Actually, I agree with you in principle here. There is a reason why the Sufi poetry from Persia and the Levant (at times North Africa as well) often uses the metaphor of the tavern and wine and drunkenness when talking about profound spiritual matters and experiential knowledge of the Divine. They may not have been drinkers themselves (though some definitely were before they repented and became awliya), but they found intoxication and loss of faculties and intellect to be a suitable analogy for when one is experiencing and recognizing the annihilatory nature of oneself. It was definitely not completely sound, but that is how it is with the "taste" of spiritual states, you can only describe them by means of other tastes - like you might describe one fruit tasting like another.

    Peace.
  114. @AaronB
    Joy, bliss, and hope :)

    But I too am merely transitional figure. A healthy society would not produce a person like me.

    Joy, bliss, and hope 🙂

    But I too am merely transitional figure. A healthy society would not produce a person like me.

    I think this ‘healthy/unhealthy’ is illusion from any wide perspective. You could be dismissing your life experience, with some illusion of some imaginary society in a future that you will never experience, never be belonging to, or even know if it will or will not occur. As far as you are concerned, this – 21st century – is your only time and society.

    You were born in certain historical time and place, society – and for all we know there is only one dimension of existence, and you probably only have single opportunity of living on earth and human civilization. To the extent you won’t experience them, the other societies are just imaginary – future ones even more than Ancient China, or pre-Colombus Incan society Sure part of the enjoyment of being comes from complaining and describing all the different problems of our society… but at some point also have to be honest, that it is just distraction oneself to compare with imaginary futures you won’t be alive, let alone young, to take part in.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    You have described well the individualist, atomized perspective of the modern despairing westerner, and why our societies are not thriving.

    Understanding what a healthy society looks like allows us, as individuals, right now, to try and incorporate this into our lives as much as possible. We may promote our mental health by seeking out entertainment that reflect these values, we may seek out friends who reflect these values, we may attempt to form small communites, we may attempt to incorporate practices and activities that reflect these values into our lives, we may choose not to participate in the general anger and cynicism and work on ourselves morally and spiritually, and we may seek a connection to the larger mystery.

    Beyond that, some people see themselves not as atomized individuals but as part of a human chain stretching across generations, and may even be willing to make sacrifices to create a better world for others as well as positively affect the lives of contemporaries - not necessarily in an activist and aggressive way, but subtly, by example, and through personal practice

    Clearly, envisioning a healthy and sane society is highly relevant both for our individual wellbeing in the here and now and for helping to fashion, possibly, a better future, and to help others now achieve well being.

    You, Dmitry, are a subtle underminer :) And not just from this comment...
  115. @Dmitry

    Joy, bliss, and hope :)

    But I too am merely transitional figure. A healthy society would not produce a person like me.
     
    I think this 'healthy/unhealthy' is illusion from any wide perspective. You could be dismissing your life experience, with some illusion of some imaginary society in a future that you will never experience, never be belonging to, or even know if it will or will not occur. As far as you are concerned, this - 21st century - is your only time and society.

    You were born in certain historical time and place, society - and for all we know there is only one dimension of existence, and you probably only have single opportunity of living on earth and human civilization. To the extent you won't experience them, the other societies are just imaginary - future ones even more than Ancient China, or pre-Colombus Incan society Sure part of the enjoyment of being comes from complaining and describing all the different problems of our society... but at some point also have to be honest, that it is just distraction oneself to compare with imaginary futures you won't be alive, let alone young, to take part in.

    You have described well the individualist, atomized perspective of the modern despairing westerner, and why our societies are not thriving.

    Understanding what a healthy society looks like allows us, as individuals, right now, to try and incorporate this into our lives as much as possible. We may promote our mental health by seeking out entertainment that reflect these values, we may seek out friends who reflect these values, we may attempt to form small communites, we may attempt to incorporate practices and activities that reflect these values into our lives, we may choose not to participate in the general anger and cynicism and work on ourselves morally and spiritually, and we may seek a connection to the larger mystery.

    Beyond that, some people see themselves not as atomized individuals but as part of a human chain stretching across generations, and may even be willing to make sacrifices to create a better world for others as well as positively affect the lives of contemporaries – not necessarily in an activist and aggressive way, but subtly, by example, and through personal practice

    Clearly, envisioning a healthy and sane society is highly relevant both for our individual wellbeing in the here and now and for helping to fashion, possibly, a better future, and to help others now achieve well being.

    You, Dmitry, are a subtle underminer 🙂 And not just from this comment…

    • Replies: @utu

    a subtle underminer
     
    New and improved Hasbara v. 2.01
    , @Dmitry
    You can keep in a mental image of a healthy society - sure, this can be enjoyable game to think about, which people have done throughout history (literary genre of utopia).*

    But then to use the mental image, to put present commentators point of view, including yourself and some others, as a some product of the sick society, because it is very distant from the mental image.

    As someone talks about religion, Indians, etc, I expected some reply that atman is not touched by such superficial things as society.

    I don't have such extreme views myself - but for something I prefer, the viewpoint and even practice of Epicurus* can be followed today, no more or less than in his own time, or just as many thousand years into the future.

    -

    * https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utopia

    * https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Epicurus


    Clearly, envisioning a healthy and sane society is highly relevant both for our individual wellbeing in the here and now and for helping to fashion, possibly, a better future, and to help others now achieve well being.

    You, Dmitry, are a subtle underminer :) And not just from this comment…
     
    I will take it as a compliment.

    It reminds of my mother, who has dreamed about the new kitchen. And we had installed the new kitchen, and a few days later already talking about a bathroom. Eventually installed a
    new bathroom, and then the next day already about the need to have new paint on the walls. And "when everything is right I'll be happy, we can invite people over", but as some distant things always pushed into the future.

    It also reminds, when I read people on the urban forums - 'the city still looks terrible, but just wait another a few more years, after the new pavements, etc, and we can enjoy it', etc, etc. Probably just the kind of attitude that will attract the devil to kill you before it happens, as not make advantage of the present is one of the greatest sins.

    Of course, in politics this kind of devaluing of present for future that never comes, is too common.

    Actually there is a Japanese fairy story this kind of attitude reminds me of, and which has sent a chill down my spine when I read it because it is a danger for my own personality type - of the boy who loses his youth in a kind of dream under the sea. But I won't say more about this story.
  116. @Thorfinnsson

    And this is among the elite striving class here in New York, which is supposed to be healthy (obesity doesn’t exist here, at least). The other day I was just struck by how weird it all was, how I never hear this stuff in other countries, especially Asian ones.

    It struck me that our world views may have serious effects on our physical being – materialism may actually lead to physical decline, and I started thinking about how physical flourishing here on earth seems fundamentally connected to healthy spirituality in general, and all sorts of examples started popping into my head….
     

    Upper class Americans aren't that healthy to begin with imo. Few of them lift weights or sprint (lots of endurance training instead), and a decent number are conned by the low fat fraud (and the rearguard "healthy fats" fraud). Some even become vegetarians or vegans. Some of them benefit from the health halo I guess which could be a good placebo. Prescription usage is rife in this class just as with the proles, and the older ones are mostly on statins (including the President).

    They just avoid binge drinking, tobacco, and heroin. They also have actual meals instead of endless snacking, and they don't put off going to the doctor when they need to.

    Would also add that Americans of all classes have terrible sleep habits.

    Not that I disagree with your primary point. Embracing the alt-right/redpill/HBD or whatever you want to call it has made me healthier for sure. How can you be truly healthy if you're ashamed of yourself? Accepting the poz is basically telling yourself that you're evil and need to die. The body reacts accordingly.

    In the US, there has (in recent years) been an increased popularity in cross fit gyms, including the so-called HIT (High Intensity Training) method.

    It’s fascinating to simultaneously see an increase in gyms throughout the US, while also seeing the overall negative health stats on Americans when it comes to obesity and diabetes.

  117. @AaronB
    You have described well the individualist, atomized perspective of the modern despairing westerner, and why our societies are not thriving.

    Understanding what a healthy society looks like allows us, as individuals, right now, to try and incorporate this into our lives as much as possible. We may promote our mental health by seeking out entertainment that reflect these values, we may seek out friends who reflect these values, we may attempt to form small communites, we may attempt to incorporate practices and activities that reflect these values into our lives, we may choose not to participate in the general anger and cynicism and work on ourselves morally and spiritually, and we may seek a connection to the larger mystery.

    Beyond that, some people see themselves not as atomized individuals but as part of a human chain stretching across generations, and may even be willing to make sacrifices to create a better world for others as well as positively affect the lives of contemporaries - not necessarily in an activist and aggressive way, but subtly, by example, and through personal practice

    Clearly, envisioning a healthy and sane society is highly relevant both for our individual wellbeing in the here and now and for helping to fashion, possibly, a better future, and to help others now achieve well being.

    You, Dmitry, are a subtle underminer :) And not just from this comment...

    a subtle underminer

    New and improved Hasbara v. 2.01

    • Replies: @AaronB
    I generally like Dmitry, but I can't deny there is is something to what you're saying...
    , @Dmitry
    Yes - a Mossad project, to write comments about atman, underneath English translation of posts by Kholmogorov, and slyly to be skeptical, without having read the badly reviewed books by Solzhenitsyn on the history of Jews, or archipelago GULAG, as works of an artist without historian training.

    I will take it as another compliment that my weirdest and most random opinions on all fields, are somehow logical to others, that can be seen as the agenda of government agencies. Although - with my knowledge of Israel - I would sadly, highly doubt that almost anyone is cultured to be interested in these areas,

  118. @utu

    a subtle underminer
     
    New and improved Hasbara v. 2.01

    I generally like Dmitry, but I can’t deny there is is something to what you’re saying…

    • Replies: @utu
    I like him too but perhaps because, as somebody already wrote here, he is "sly" and "affable."
    , @utu
    Solzhenitsyn =moderately talented writer who can be dismissed
  119. AP says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    What differentiates England from Germany? Conquest by French-speaking Normans, which brought with it massive influx of French words, among other changes to the society (such as more Scandinavian-style political culture, the parliamentary system is a Nordic thing). Old English looked like German, after Norman conquest the English language does not.
     

    To this we can add:

    • The North Sea
    • England has been a politically united monarchy for over 1,000 years
    • Germany is Catholic and Lutheran, whereas England is Anglican (who are schismatics rather than true Protestants)
    • Germany was more or less politically divided from the fall of the Hohenstaufens until the Kleindeutsche Lösung resulted in the crowning of Wilhelm I as German Emperor at the Palace of Versailles, and all of Germany was only united from 1938-1945
    • Germany has had many different types of governments including elective monarchies, hereditary monarchies, oligarchic republics (the Free and Imperial Cities), communism, and liberal democracy
    • England has always been a unitary state, Germany was only a unitary state from 1933-1945 and has otherwise been federal or confederal
    • The English are famously empirical and pragmatic, whereas Germans are well-known philosophers
    • The Germans produced classical music, the English produced pop music
    • In addition to 60% of the English language consisting of French, Greek, and Latin words the grammar of English is different than German
    • The English built the world's largest overseas empire and established several daughter countries, the Germans only briefly had an overseas empire which was much smaller. No daughter countries either
    • The English "public school" system is very different from the system of education invented in the Kingdom of Prussia
    • Class is much more salient in England than in Germany
    • The English are known for their humor, the Germans are known for having no sense of humor
    • England is a beer country (though the upper classes long imported wine), whereas Germany is a beer & wine country
    • Gin is the national spirit of England, whereas in Germany it would be schnapps or brandy
    • English sausages have grain in them, German sausages do not
    • England is traditionally a seapower with the world's strongest navy from the early 18th century until 1942; Germany is traditionally a continental power which fielded the strongest army in the world from the time of Roon and Moltke until the debacle at Stalingrad
    • Englishmen like to enjoy nature in the form of "expeditions", whereas Germans enjoy hiking alone
    • Car culture is much stronger in Germany than in the UK
    • The English are more comfortable with free markets than Germans

    You get the point.

    Now as for differences between Russia and the Ukraine:

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they're Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells

    Probably you can come up with more, but nothing on the level of differences between Germany and England.

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they’re Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells

    * politically, Ukrainians prefer plurality (which can become chaotic) whereas Russian instinct is to gravitate towards an autocratic ruler
    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
    *Ukrainian folk music quite different and more complex, using different instruments
    * Carol of the Bells is the only cultural achievement any Westerner such as you has heard of, there is a rich musical tradition
    *Ukrainians much more traditionally moralistic (lower divorce, abortion rates)
    *Ukrainians much more church-going
    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    • Replies: @German_reader

    Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
     
    According to Wikipedia there's a Latin version of that...was Latin still used/known in early 18th century Ukraine?
    EDIT: Ok, I see Orlyk had studied with Jesuits, I guess that's where he learned it, interesting.
    , @Gerard2

    * politically, Ukrainians prefer plurality (which can become chaotic) whereas Russian instinct is to gravitate towards an autocratic ruler
    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
    *Ukrainian folk music quite different and more complex, using different instruments
    * Carol of the Bells is the only cultural achievement any Westerner such as you has heard of, there is a rich musical tradition
    *Ukrainians much more traditionally moralistic (lower divorce, abortion rates)
    *Ukrainians much more church-going
    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)
     
    hahaha! Difficult to know where to start with a post that is lies from start-to-finish....particularly when it;s some fucked in the head troll-bot on some algorith to spend 12 hours on here again , writing 250000 words of pre-prorammed garbage....but that is the point of a retard as yourself...to waste the time of serious people by swamping the board with imbecilic attention-whoring garbage
    , @Thorfinnsson


    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century:
     
    Cossacks are also associated with Russia however, and Novgorod had a republic for 300 years.

    Constitutions were also a big fad in the 18th century. Could've happened to Russia as well if they'd suffered from a pozzed Tsar or serious internal revolt. It's not like Prussia wanted to grant a constitution for instance, yet it did anyway.


    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
     
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_alcohol_consumption_per_capita

    If these data are correct there is not much difference. This is also from 2010 and Russian consumption has dropped since then owing to anti-alcohol measures.

    Poland's consumption is also quite high as well.


    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
     
    Russian elites have been trying to Westernize on and off for three centuries.

    Recent Russian antagonism towards the West is based on our own hostile behavior.


    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)
     
    What do the Hungarians do? Perhaps the Magyar Miracle can chip in.

    There is an interesting difference in between Russia and the UK on tea. Russians I believe take their tea with lemon juice, whereas the UK takes their tea with cream.

    Personally I drink coffee and tea as they're both great. :)

    I have to again compliment you on your polite demeanor in answering me, which is likely not easy given the subject matter and my own belligerence. Certainly an improvement over Mr. Hack and his love of punitive psychiatry.
    , @Mikhail
    With a hill billy nationalism and convoluted spin of history, pro-Bandera Galicia-Volhyn Ukrainians are renown for being quite xenophobic towards a range of others. That mindset has extended within elements of the Ukrainian diaspora and in varying parts of Ukraine outside of Galicia and Volhyn.

    Ukrainians thinking more long my lines have observed this as have others.

    Many Russians have an internationalist view that wasn't the result of Communism. Russians have historically accepted many non-Russians who showed a friendliness and loyalty towards them. Many of those stating an ethnic Russian background readily and proudly reference being of other backgrounds as well.

    Russia has reached out to the West. The current Russian apprehension with the West is a quite understandable response to the anti-Russian biases that have influenced many in the West.

    Thru the centuries, Russia has experienced democratic trappings - something that was (as a rarity) brought up in a recent WaPo oped-ed that JRL ran.

    So much for the sugar coated svidomite stereotyping.

    , @inertial

    Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars
     
    I can see that you haven't studied history in the USSR.
  120. @AP

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they’re Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells
     
    * politically, Ukrainians prefer plurality (which can become chaotic) whereas Russian instinct is to gravitate towards an autocratic ruler
    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
    *Ukrainian folk music quite different and more complex, using different instruments
    * Carol of the Bells is the only cultural achievement any Westerner such as you has heard of, there is a rich musical tradition
    *Ukrainians much more traditionally moralistic (lower divorce, abortion rates)
    *Ukrainians much more church-going
    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk

    According to Wikipedia there’s a Latin version of that…was Latin still used/known in early 18th century Ukraine?
    EDIT: Ok, I see Orlyk had studied with Jesuits, I guess that’s where he learned it, interesting.

    • Replies: @AP
    Basically all educated Ukrainians studied with Jesuits - another contrast between Ukraine and Russia.
  121. @AaronB
    I generally like Dmitry, but I can't deny there is is something to what you're saying...

    I like him too but perhaps because, as somebody already wrote here, he is “sly” and “affable.”

  122. @AaronB
    I generally like Dmitry, but I can't deny there is is something to what you're saying...

    Solzhenitsyn =moderately talented writer who can be dismissed

  123. @German_reader

    Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
     
    According to Wikipedia there's a Latin version of that...was Latin still used/known in early 18th century Ukraine?
    EDIT: Ok, I see Orlyk had studied with Jesuits, I guess that's where he learned it, interesting.

    Basically all educated Ukrainians studied with Jesuits – another contrast between Ukraine and Russia.

    • Replies: @utu
    For reasons I do not remember Russia allowed Jesuits to operate in Russia after the papal suppression of Jesuits in late 18 c.
    , @Mikhail

    Basically all educated Ukrainians studied with Jesuits – another contrast between Ukraine and Russia.
     
    Going back when? Certainly not in more recent history. Among others, the great Russo-Ukrainian literary figure Gogol didn't think so highly of that experience.
  124. @for-the-record
    So please explain to me your preferred scenario.
  125. @inertial
    Right, a huge contrast (not.)

    And here is another example of a Polish aristocrat:


    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/a3/10/54/a31054f456c16bcdc0f16bd3b5ede615.jpg


    Oops, actually it's an Ottoman aristocrat. Hard to tell the difference.

    there was a white slave trade out of Crimea for hundreds of years so it’s not surprising if Turkish aristos ended up looking east European.

  126. @AP
    Basically all educated Ukrainians studied with Jesuits - another contrast between Ukraine and Russia.

    For reasons I do not remember Russia allowed Jesuits to operate in Russia after the papal suppression of Jesuits in late 18 c.

  127. @AP

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they’re Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells
     
    * politically, Ukrainians prefer plurality (which can become chaotic) whereas Russian instinct is to gravitate towards an autocratic ruler
    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
    *Ukrainian folk music quite different and more complex, using different instruments
    * Carol of the Bells is the only cultural achievement any Westerner such as you has heard of, there is a rich musical tradition
    *Ukrainians much more traditionally moralistic (lower divorce, abortion rates)
    *Ukrainians much more church-going
    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    [MORE]

    * politically, Ukrainians prefer plurality (which can become chaotic) whereas Russian instinct is to gravitate towards an autocratic ruler
    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
    *Ukrainian folk music quite different and more complex, using different instruments
    * Carol of the Bells is the only cultural achievement any Westerner such as you has heard of, there is a rich musical tradition
    *Ukrainians much more traditionally moralistic (lower divorce, abortion rates)
    *Ukrainians much more church-going
    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    hahaha! Difficult to know where to start with a post that is lies from start-to-finish….particularly when it;s some fucked in the head troll-bot on some algorith to spend 12 hours on here again , writing 250000 words of pre-prorammed garbage….but that is the point of a retard as yourself…to waste the time of serious people by swamping the board with imbecilic attention-whoring garbage

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    For sure.
  128. @AaronB

    How can you be truly healthy if you’re ashamed of yourself? Accepting the poz is basically telling yourself that you’re evil and need to die. The body reacts accordingly.
     
    Definitely a lot of truth in that. I also think disconnecting from others - no family or community, even in your mind - may lead to physical decline as well.

    People drink a fair amount here in ny, and anecdotally it seems like 50% of the white population smokes, definitely among the hipsters, although I doubt that's substantiated by official figures (maybe people lie).

    But in Japan people binge drink like crazy and smoke a ton, and they're one of the healthiest countries around. We're probably a bit too Puritan about this stuff - but really I think you have to look at drinking and smoking as part of a total lifestyle. Japanese work hard and drink hard - somehow that provides balance, even if not optimal, and they stay thin and eat well. And they dont hate themselves. Somehow binge drinking in America leads to serious health issues.

    There's this wonderful Chinese story of the Seven Sages Of The Bamboo Grove, basically Taoist sages who retired from the world and drank like fishes from the afternoon on. Drinking can be a part of spiritual practice, though Talha won't like to hear it :)

    There's something seriously death cultish in the American war on pleasure and obsession with work. But everything must be seen as part of a totality. In another context limiting pleasure may be quite healthy and spiritually necessary.

    People drink a fair amount here in ny, and anecdotally it seems like 50% of the white population smokes, definitely among the hipsters, although I doubt that’s substantiated by official figures (maybe people lie).

    But in Japan people binge drink like crazy and smoke a ton, and they’re one of the healthiest countries around. We’re probably a bit too Puritan about this stuff – but really I think you have to look at drinking and smoking as part of a total lifestyle. Japanese work hard and drink hard – somehow that provides balance, even if not optimal, and they stay thin and eat well. And they dont hate themselves. Somehow binge drinking in America leads to serious health issues.

    I am an alcoholic and do not drink anymore. I do plan to attempt moderate drinking next year. Drinking has led me into fairly serious criminal trouble. Fortunately I escaped any serious medical trouble. Strangely I was a moderate drinker until age 24 (did not get blasted even as a teenager) and then turned into an incredibly heavy drinker.

    Drinking in America peaked in 1980 and then went into decline until the turn of the millenium, after which it started increasing again. There has been a big cultural change on drinking in this century compared to the 90s. A great example is Whole Foods. Pretty common to see housewives drinking a glass of wine at 2pm while shopping. I don’t think this is healthy.

    Japan is healthy in spite of its drinking and smoking, not because of it. It’s illegal to be fat in Japan (seriously, you get fined) which likely has a lot to do with it. And like you said their mental health may be better. They are surrounded by fellow Japanese and aren’t ashamed. Not much commuting either.

    That said smoking, while unhealthy, is not quite as unhealthy as they would have you believe. 85% of smokers never develop lung cancer, and research in the 70s suggested up to four cigarettes per day was harmless other than diminished lung capacity (and getting uglier).

    Alcohol is well known to reduce cardiovascular disease and as such is positively associated with longer lifespans. In fact even heavy drinkers outlive non-drinkers, though non-drinkers include former alcoholics with failing livers which is probably why.

    If you do enough binge drinking you will kill yourself. To be clear I am not talking about Japanese drinking culture here. I’m talking drinking a handle of whiskey every day.

    There’s something seriously death cultish in the American war on pleasure and obsession with work. But everything must be seen as part of a totality. In another context limiting pleasure may be quite healthy and spiritually necessary.

    I also don’t agree we’re too puritan about drinking (smoking, sure, though there is a public health benefit to that, plus don’t forget smoking makes women ugly). Drinking is everywhere in America, as is binge drinking. College in America is basically four years of binge drinking.

    I’m in favor of the American obsession with work. But I am against commuting (I live two miles from the plant) and helicopter parenting. You put those three things together and it’s just too much–something’s gotta give.

    Also, you’re thinking about our own class here (as am I wrt helicopter parenting). Working class Americans aren’t obsessed with work, and they also don’t helicopter parent. Working class Americans also like to play hard–it’s not just something they do in their teens and 20s. Their lower impulse control means their families are pretty disordered these days unfortunately.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    Well, my position on hard work is more nuanced. I think a healthy society with a strong connection to the supernaturall will certainly encourage hard work, since it would have a way of life that is emotionally satisfying and worth defending, and hard work is necessary to compete internationally.

    However, a healthy society with a strong connection to the supernatural would also preserve spaces for idleness - monasteries, hermitages, and wandering ascetics as well as some measure of aristocratic leisure. All high culture and spirituality depends on leisure.

    A society is composed of different types of people, and a healthy society will be organized according to these divisions.

    Moreover, a healthy society will also make room for frequent festivals, celebrations, and merry making - celebrations of divine bounty and legendary heros and events -medieval society worked extremely hard but also enjoyed lots of festivals and saints days, and the Japanese work extremely hard but are not ashamed to party equally hard in a way that would be astonishing to Americans - as well as days of quiet meditation where one turns contemplative, like the Jewish Sabbath, and perhaps even fast days. There is an economy to living well.

    Furthermore, hard work should be about a larger communal purpose and should be approached like the medieval craft tradition or the modern Japanese approach - excellence in craftsmanship should be pursued as a spiritual value in whatever job one has, however humble, even a garbage collector. In other words, hard work should be spiritually elevated by a framework of larger communal purpose as well as devotion to excellence in craftsmanship.

    I describe the American approach to work as death cultish because it lacks every one of these elements. It is soulless, it is about money and self-aggrandizement, it lacks a commitment to the excellence of craftsmanship but is solely about profit, it isn't balanced out by festivals or days of contemplation, and it leaves no room for the leisure necessary for the creation of high culture and spirituality by some sections of the population.

    I am certainly not averse to hard work, and on other threads have made clear I think one of the primary moral advantages Asians today have over whites is their commitment to hard work - for which they are unfairly mocked by whites - and I strongly suspect the Asian IQ advantage is largely a product of this work ethic as well. I would make similar claims for the bizarre ascendence of Jews in our culture, and their IQ advantage as well. White culture today is steeped in fatalism and despair, and lacking an appreciation for the spiritual value of hard work - and appreciation for the role of sheer effort in human affairs is a spiritual value - is all too ready to surrender the field to any comer who has temporarily gained an advantage. The detestable Steve Sailer does much to spread this fatalism.

    So much for my opinions on work.

    As for alchol, I hear you - good luck on trying to reintroduce it to your life in a moderate fashion. I hope it works out for you. But it's true that it is not for everyone.

    A handle of whiskey a day, however, would be considered excessive by any culture at any period in history, I believe. Although apparently many actors before the sixties drank this much, if a certain website I was perusing recently can be believed, and certainly famous men, like, perhaps, Churchill. It is an individual matter - but American culture likes to flatten out eccentricities.

    But a glass or two of wine in the afternoon is well within traditional European norms, I would say, and drinking alcohol for breakfast was also extremely common.

    I do think American attitudes remain a bit prurient in this regard, mostly because our peculiar work culture sees no value in relaxation, leisure, or merriment, or anything that would detract from the pursuit of money. Jewish culture, incidentally, heavily frowns on drinking for this reason - you must always have your wits about you to gain a business advantage over your fellow man, and nothing can detract from the pursuit of money. Although this attitude is lessening of late, and I know Jews who drink heavily.

    You are right about the working class - but all my foregoing remarks should be considered in the context of a healthy and sane culture. What would be poison outside that framework might be an indispensable element within it.
  129. @AP

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they’re Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells
     
    * politically, Ukrainians prefer plurality (which can become chaotic) whereas Russian instinct is to gravitate towards an autocratic ruler
    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
    *Ukrainian folk music quite different and more complex, using different instruments
    * Carol of the Bells is the only cultural achievement any Westerner such as you has heard of, there is a rich musical tradition
    *Ukrainians much more traditionally moralistic (lower divorce, abortion rates)
    *Ukrainians much more church-going
    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century:

    Cossacks are also associated with Russia however, and Novgorod had a republic for 300 years.

    Constitutions were also a big fad in the 18th century. Could’ve happened to Russia as well if they’d suffered from a pozzed Tsar or serious internal revolt. It’s not like Prussia wanted to grant a constitution for instance, yet it did anyway.

    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption

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

    If these data are correct there is not much difference. This is also from 2010 and Russian consumption has dropped since then owing to anti-alcohol measures.

    Poland’s consumption is also quite high as well.

    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)

    Russian elites have been trying to Westernize on and off for three centuries.

    Recent Russian antagonism towards the West is based on our own hostile behavior.

    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    What do the Hungarians do? Perhaps the Magyar Miracle can chip in.

    There is an interesting difference in between Russia and the UK on tea. Russians I believe take their tea with lemon juice, whereas the UK takes their tea with cream.

    Personally I drink coffee and tea as they’re both great. 🙂

    I have to again compliment you on your polite demeanor in answering me, which is likely not easy given the subject matter and my own belligerence. Certainly an improvement over Mr. Hack and his love of punitive psychiatry.

    • Replies: @AP

    Cossacks are also associated with Russia however
     
    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.

    Novgorod had a republic for 300 years
     
    This was a dead end - Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia.

    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption

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

    If these data are correct there is not much difference.
     
    I stand corrected. Differneces are small indeed. But Ukraine's results are somewhat diluted by the inclusion of Russian Crimea and Donbas (20%) if the population, which would make Ukraine more like Russia in 2010.

    Constitutions were also a big fad in the 18th century. Could’ve happened to Russia as well if they’d suffered from a pozzed Tsar or serious internal revolt.
     
    They were inspired by Classical works and products of Western/Jesuit educations. Russia didn't have that, so a bunch of Russians would not have come up with a constitution involving separation of powers and limited government in the early 18th century. Generations of Jesuit education separate Ukraine from Russia.

    Along those lines, Ukrainians developed their own baroque architecture:

    http://archithusiast.blogspot.com/2012/02/ukrainian-baroque-style.html

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

    (Russians borrowed from this)

    Russian elites have been trying to Westernize on and off for three centuries.
     
    In Ukraine it's more natural and grassroots. In Russia some elite liberals in Moscow vote for pro-Western parties. In Ukraine the majority of ethnic Ukrainians do. Proto-Ukrainians were more antagonistic towards Mongols than Russians were. Conversely, whenever some invader came through Ukraine from the West many Ukrainians were happy to join them.

    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    What do the Hungarians do? Perhaps the Magyar Miracle can chip in.
     
    Here's a chart:

    https://www.indy100.com/article/tea-or-coffee-a-map-of-the-world-according-to-who-prefers-which-of-each-drink--Wkg7X39yAfZ

    Within Europe, Russian tea/coffee percentage is like the UK's, Ukraine's is like Hungary's. More Ukrainians prefer coffee than do Russians. And, keep in mind, Ukraine is still about 15% Russian, so the differences would probably be magnified if we only looked at ethnic Ukrainians.

    I have to again compliment you on your polite demeanor in answering me, which is likely not easy given the subject matter and my own belligerence.
     
    You haven't attacked me personally, and you are an intelligent guy to argue with. But thank you.
    , @Dmitry

    There is an interesting difference in between Russia and the UK on tea. Russians I believe take their tea with lemon juice, whereas the UK takes their tea with cream.

     

    The difference is sometimes making a strong tea, and then diluting it with water. For British (who famous connoisseurs about tea), this is seen as a kind of crime against tea.

    As for a question about using milk or not? - actually in London, you will find they are often drinking tea without milk. For example, Twining's Earl Grey (tea flavored with Bergamot) is not supposed to be with milk. And they give at the restaurant you milk only separately if you want it.

    , @Mikhail
    In the former Ukrainian SSR, Cossacks tend to be among the more pro-Russian of elements in that former Soviet republic.

    I've yet to run into a Catholic or Greek Catholic Cossack.

    , @Mr. Hack
    Sorry, but your obsessive/compulsive form of Ukrainaphobia (and make no doubt about it, you are definitely a Ukrainaphobe), requires drastic measures. It's too bad that you haven't taken the cure yet, as I see that you're still spouting off your nonsensical bigotry. :-(

    As part of my ongoing campaign against the existence of the Ukraine I have consulted Wikipedia.
     
    Sure, it will be painful in the beginning, but think of the remedial benefits that await you: no more sleepless nights or nights fraught with dreams of Bandera or Shevchenko torturing your sorry ass with a pitchfork crowned with a sharp, nasty tryzub. Set yourself free, man! :-)
  130. AP says:
    @Thorfinnsson


    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century:
     
    Cossacks are also associated with Russia however, and Novgorod had a republic for 300 years.

    Constitutions were also a big fad in the 18th century. Could've happened to Russia as well if they'd suffered from a pozzed Tsar or serious internal revolt. It's not like Prussia wanted to grant a constitution for instance, yet it did anyway.


    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
     
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_alcohol_consumption_per_capita

    If these data are correct there is not much difference. This is also from 2010 and Russian consumption has dropped since then owing to anti-alcohol measures.

    Poland's consumption is also quite high as well.


    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
     
    Russian elites have been trying to Westernize on and off for three centuries.

    Recent Russian antagonism towards the West is based on our own hostile behavior.


    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)
     
    What do the Hungarians do? Perhaps the Magyar Miracle can chip in.

    There is an interesting difference in between Russia and the UK on tea. Russians I believe take their tea with lemon juice, whereas the UK takes their tea with cream.

    Personally I drink coffee and tea as they're both great. :)

    I have to again compliment you on your polite demeanor in answering me, which is likely not easy given the subject matter and my own belligerence. Certainly an improvement over Mr. Hack and his love of punitive psychiatry.

    Cossacks are also associated with Russia however

    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.

    Novgorod had a republic for 300 years

    This was a dead end – Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia.

    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption

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

    If these data are correct there is not much difference.

    I stand corrected. Differneces are small indeed. But Ukraine’s results are somewhat diluted by the inclusion of Russian Crimea and Donbas (20%) if the population, which would make Ukraine more like Russia in 2010.

    Constitutions were also a big fad in the 18th century. Could’ve happened to Russia as well if they’d suffered from a pozzed Tsar or serious internal revolt.

    They were inspired by Classical works and products of Western/Jesuit educations. Russia didn’t have that, so a bunch of Russians would not have come up with a constitution involving separation of powers and limited government in the early 18th century. Generations of Jesuit education separate Ukraine from Russia.

    Along those lines, Ukrainians developed their own baroque architecture:

    http://archithusiast.blogspot.com/2012/02/ukrainian-baroque-style.html

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

    (Russians borrowed from this)

    Russian elites have been trying to Westernize on and off for three centuries.

    In Ukraine it’s more natural and grassroots. In Russia some elite liberals in Moscow vote for pro-Western parties. In Ukraine the majority of ethnic Ukrainians do. Proto-Ukrainians were more antagonistic towards Mongols than Russians were. Conversely, whenever some invader came through Ukraine from the West many Ukrainians were happy to join them.

    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    What do the Hungarians do? Perhaps the Magyar Miracle can chip in.

    Here’s a chart:

    https://www.indy100.com/article/tea-or-coffee-a-map-of-the-world-according-to-who-prefers-which-of-each-drink–Wkg7X39yAfZ

    Within Europe, Russian tea/coffee percentage is like the UK’s, Ukraine’s is like Hungary’s. More Ukrainians prefer coffee than do Russians. And, keep in mind, Ukraine is still about 15% Russian, so the differences would probably be magnified if we only looked at ethnic Ukrainians.

    I have to again compliment you on your polite demeanor in answering me, which is likely not easy given the subject matter and my own belligerence.

    You haven’t attacked me personally, and you are an intelligent guy to argue with. But thank you.

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson


    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.
     
    Sure. That said haven't Cossacks themselves long been pro-Russian?

    This was a dead end – Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia.
     
    The Cossack states were also dead ends for the same reason. All of the East Slavic peoples ended up becoming part of the Russian Empire. Novgorod was simply conquered earlier, and it was part of of the RSFSR and is part of the Russian Federation.

    If not for the Russian Revolution and Lenin's nationalities policies there wouldn't be a Ukrainian state today, and speakers of the Ukrainian dialect would be down to a dwindling population of old people.

    There were other Russian states as well such as Smolensk, Chernigov, Ryazan, etc.


    They were inspired by Classical works and products of Western/Jesuit educations. Russia didn’t have that, so a bunch of Russians would not have come up with a constitution involving separation of powers and limited government in the early 18th century. Generations of Jesuit education separate Ukraine from Russia.
     
    Did Orthodox Ukrainians receive a Jesuit education?

    Religious differences are important, but it's worth pointing out that both Germany and the Netherlands are religiously divided. Even England and France have respective Catholic and Protestant minorities.

    The constitution fetish of the 17th through 19th centuries was the result of the Enlightenment.

    The ancients did not have constitutions as we understand them, though the concept of constitutional law was first explained by Aristotle.

    A rich body of constitutional law developed during the middle ages, especially in the Holy Roman Empire, but this constitutional law was the product of centuries of bargaining and not something created out of whole cloth like the 17th, 18th, and 19th century constitutions liberals fetishized.

    And Russia absolutely had such ideas floating around. Catherine the Great corresponded with Voltaire after all and the Russian nobility spoke French. There were also many Westerners working in the Russian Empire, and the Baltic German nobility was prominent in the the Russian Empire since at least the Treaty of Nystad.

    The Northern Society had as its goal the establishment of a British-style constitutional monarchy in Russia, and Alexander I had liberal political views early in his reign.


    Along those lines, Ukrainians developed their own baroque architecture:

    http://archithusiast.blogspot.com/2012/02/ukrainian-baroque-style.html

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

    (Russians borrowed from this)
     
    This is interesting and pretty, but to me as a Westerner just all looks Russian.


    In Ukraine it’s more natural and grassroots. In Russia some elite liberals in Moscow vote for pro-Western parties. In Ukraine the majority of ethnic Ukrainians do. Proto-Ukrainians were more antagonistic towards Mongols than Russians were. Conversely, whenever some invader came through Ukraine from the West many Ukrainians were happy to join them.
     
    Russians had very positive opinions of the West in the 90s and much of the 00s as well. Karlin has documented this in his blog. Vladimir Putin even tried to join NATO in 2000, and he has stated his goal is a common economic space from Lisbon to Vladivostok. Consistent American hostility is the reason this has gone nowhere.

    Ukrainians also elected the Party of the Regions (with support from the Crimea and the Donets Basin of course).

    A number of Russians also defected to the Germans during WW2, most infamously Vlasov.

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/60/Bundesarchiv_Bild_101I-297-1704-10%2C_Nordfrankreich%2C_Angehörige_der_Wlassow-Armee_Recolored.jpg
    , @Mikhail
    If Poland hadn't occupied Ukraine for the extended period that it did, things would probably be noticeably different as well.

    You don't know for sure what would've happened vis-a-vis a battle involving Novgorod from centuries ago.

    As previously noted, the Cossacks in the former Ukrainian SSR tend to be among the more pro-Russian of elements in that territory.
  131. @Thorfinnsson
    As part of my ongoing campaign against the existence of the Ukraine I have consulted Wikipedia.

    I took a look at this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hetman_of_Zaporizhian_Host

    Take a look at the portraits.

    All of these guys have stupid Russian-looking mustaches and hats until about the time that Russians started LARPing as Westerners.

    They also have Russian-type names. Several of them are even named Ivan.

    Verdict: the Ukraine does not exist.

    This is a narcissism of small differences type thing, and proponents of the "Ukraine" have some stupid fantasy they can be "European".

    And, as always, I continue to remain baffled as to why anyone would want to be "Ukrainian" instead of Russian. Any "Ukrainian" has the immediate option of joining something that is both bigger and better.

    If the choice were German instead of Russian I could understand of course. Probably many "Ukrainians" actually think this is an option based on EU fantasies.

    If the choice were German instead of Russian I could understand of course. Probably many “Ukrainians” actually think this is an option based on EU fantasies.

    My feeling as well. I think that most pro-EU svidomites want to join the EU in order to move to an affluent European country. Germany would be their top destination. There they can rejoice in poz and export its most exotic expressions to Ukraine as the latest European trends.

    In 50 years, Ukrainians will be nigger-loving Russophobes, unless they don’t prevail in Donbass, which they won’t, thankfully.

    I think of Ukraine as I think of Bavaria in the past: a Germanic people with separatist tendencies who nevertheless remained within the unified German nation. Ukraine could have a regional identity, whose preservation would be wayyy more guaranteed within Russia than under Western rule.

    • Replies: @AP

    I think of Ukraine as I think of Bavaria in the past
     
    This is because you are ignorant and gullible.
  132. @Thorfinnsson

    People drink a fair amount here in ny, and anecdotally it seems like 50% of the white population smokes, definitely among the hipsters, although I doubt that’s substantiated by official figures (maybe people lie).

    But in Japan people binge drink like crazy and smoke a ton, and they’re one of the healthiest countries around. We’re probably a bit too Puritan about this stuff – but really I think you have to look at drinking and smoking as part of a total lifestyle. Japanese work hard and drink hard – somehow that provides balance, even if not optimal, and they stay thin and eat well. And they dont hate themselves. Somehow binge drinking in America leads to serious health issues.
     

    I am an alcoholic and do not drink anymore. I do plan to attempt moderate drinking next year. Drinking has led me into fairly serious criminal trouble. Fortunately I escaped any serious medical trouble. Strangely I was a moderate drinker until age 24 (did not get blasted even as a teenager) and then turned into an incredibly heavy drinker.

    Drinking in America peaked in 1980 and then went into decline until the turn of the millenium, after which it started increasing again. There has been a big cultural change on drinking in this century compared to the 90s. A great example is Whole Foods. Pretty common to see housewives drinking a glass of wine at 2pm while shopping. I don't think this is healthy.

    Japan is healthy in spite of its drinking and smoking, not because of it. It's illegal to be fat in Japan (seriously, you get fined) which likely has a lot to do with it. And like you said their mental health may be better. They are surrounded by fellow Japanese and aren't ashamed. Not much commuting either.

    That said smoking, while unhealthy, is not quite as unhealthy as they would have you believe. 85% of smokers never develop lung cancer, and research in the 70s suggested up to four cigarettes per day was harmless other than diminished lung capacity (and getting uglier).

    Alcohol is well known to reduce cardiovascular disease and as such is positively associated with longer lifespans. In fact even heavy drinkers outlive non-drinkers, though non-drinkers include former alcoholics with failing livers which is probably why.

    If you do enough binge drinking you will kill yourself. To be clear I am not talking about Japanese drinking culture here. I'm talking drinking a handle of whiskey every day.

    There’s something seriously death cultish in the American war on pleasure and obsession with work. But everything must be seen as part of a totality. In another context limiting pleasure may be quite healthy and spiritually necessary.
     

    I also don't agree we're too puritan about drinking (smoking, sure, though there is a public health benefit to that, plus don't forget smoking makes women ugly). Drinking is everywhere in America, as is binge drinking. College in America is basically four years of binge drinking.

    I'm in favor of the American obsession with work. But I am against commuting (I live two miles from the plant) and helicopter parenting. You put those three things together and it's just too much--something's gotta give.

    Also, you're thinking about our own class here (as am I wrt helicopter parenting). Working class Americans aren't obsessed with work, and they also don't helicopter parent. Working class Americans also like to play hard--it's not just something they do in their teens and 20s. Their lower impulse control means their families are pretty disordered these days unfortunately.

    Well, my position on hard work is more nuanced. I think a healthy society with a strong connection to the supernaturall will certainly encourage hard work, since it would have a way of life that is emotionally satisfying and worth defending, and hard work is necessary to compete internationally.

    However, a healthy society with a strong connection to the supernatural would also preserve spaces for idleness – monasteries, hermitages, and wandering ascetics as well as some measure of aristocratic leisure. All high culture and spirituality depends on leisure.

    A society is composed of different types of people, and a healthy society will be organized according to these divisions.

    Moreover, a healthy society will also make room for frequent festivals, celebrations, and merry making – celebrations of divine bounty and legendary heros and events -medieval society worked extremely hard but also enjoyed lots of festivals and saints days, and the Japanese work extremely hard but are not ashamed to party equally hard in a way that would be astonishing to Americans – as well as days of quiet meditation where one turns contemplative, like the Jewish Sabbath, and perhaps even fast days. There is an economy to living well.

    Furthermore, hard work should be about a larger communal purpose and should be approached like the medieval craft tradition or the modern Japanese approach – excellence in craftsmanship should be pursued as a spiritual value in whatever job one has, however humble, even a garbage collector. In other words, hard work should be spiritually elevated by a framework of larger communal purpose as well as devotion to excellence in craftsmanship.

    I describe the American approach to work as death cultish because it lacks every one of these elements. It is soulless, it is about money and self-aggrandizement, it lacks a commitment to the excellence of craftsmanship but is solely about profit, it isn’t balanced out by festivals or days of contemplation, and it leaves no room for the leisure necessary for the creation of high culture and spirituality by some sections of the population.

    I am certainly not averse to hard work, and on other threads have made clear I think one of the primary moral advantages Asians today have over whites is their commitment to hard work – for which they are unfairly mocked by whites – and I strongly suspect the Asian IQ advantage is largely a product of this work ethic as well. I would make similar claims for the bizarre ascendence of Jews in our culture, and their IQ advantage as well. White culture today is steeped in fatalism and despair, and lacking an appreciation for the spiritual value of hard work – and appreciation for the role of sheer effort in human affairs is a spiritual value – is all too ready to surrender the field to any comer who has temporarily gained an advantage. The detestable Steve Sailer does much to spread this fatalism.

    So much for my opinions on work.

    As for alchol, I hear you – good luck on trying to reintroduce it to your life in a moderate fashion. I hope it works out for you. But it’s true that it is not for everyone.

    A handle of whiskey a day, however, would be considered excessive by any culture at any period in history, I believe. Although apparently many actors before the sixties drank this much, if a certain website I was perusing recently can be believed, and certainly famous men, like, perhaps, Churchill. It is an individual matter – but American culture likes to flatten out eccentricities.

    But a glass or two of wine in the afternoon is well within traditional European norms, I would say, and drinking alcohol for breakfast was also extremely common.

    I do think American attitudes remain a bit prurient in this regard, mostly because our peculiar work culture sees no value in relaxation, leisure, or merriment, or anything that would detract from the pursuit of money. Jewish culture, incidentally, heavily frowns on drinking for this reason – you must always have your wits about you to gain a business advantage over your fellow man, and nothing can detract from the pursuit of money. Although this attitude is lessening of late, and I know Jews who drink heavily.

    You are right about the working class – but all my foregoing remarks should be considered in the context of a healthy and sane culture. What would be poison outside that framework might be an indispensable element within it.

  133. @AaronB
    You have described well the individualist, atomized perspective of the modern despairing westerner, and why our societies are not thriving.

    Understanding what a healthy society looks like allows us, as individuals, right now, to try and incorporate this into our lives as much as possible. We may promote our mental health by seeking out entertainment that reflect these values, we may seek out friends who reflect these values, we may attempt to form small communites, we may attempt to incorporate practices and activities that reflect these values into our lives, we may choose not to participate in the general anger and cynicism and work on ourselves morally and spiritually, and we may seek a connection to the larger mystery.

    Beyond that, some people see themselves not as atomized individuals but as part of a human chain stretching across generations, and may even be willing to make sacrifices to create a better world for others as well as positively affect the lives of contemporaries - not necessarily in an activist and aggressive way, but subtly, by example, and through personal practice

    Clearly, envisioning a healthy and sane society is highly relevant both for our individual wellbeing in the here and now and for helping to fashion, possibly, a better future, and to help others now achieve well being.

    You, Dmitry, are a subtle underminer :) And not just from this comment...

    You can keep in a mental image of a healthy society – sure, this can be enjoyable game to think about, which people have done throughout history (literary genre of utopia).*

    But then to use the mental image, to put present commentators point of view, including yourself and some others, as a some product of the sick society, because it is very distant from the mental image.

    As someone talks about religion, Indians, etc, I expected some reply that atman is not touched by such superficial things as society.

    I don’t have such extreme views myself – but for something I prefer, the viewpoint and even practice of Epicurus* can be followed today, no more or less than in his own time, or just as many thousand years into the future.

    * https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utopia

    * https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Epicurus

    Clearly, envisioning a healthy and sane society is highly relevant both for our individual wellbeing in the here and now and for helping to fashion, possibly, a better future, and to help others now achieve well being.

    You, Dmitry, are a subtle underminer 🙂 And not just from this comment…

    I will take it as a compliment.

    It reminds of my mother, who has dreamed about the new kitchen. And we had installed the new kitchen, and a few days later already talking about a bathroom. Eventually installed a
    new bathroom, and then the next day already about the need to have new paint on the walls. And “when everything is right I’ll be happy, we can invite people over”, but as some distant things always pushed into the future.

    It also reminds, when I read people on the urban forums – ‘the city still looks terrible, but just wait another a few more years, after the new pavements, etc, and we can enjoy it’, etc, etc. Probably just the kind of attitude that will attract the devil to kill you before it happens, as not make advantage of the present is one of the greatest sins.

    Of course, in politics this kind of devaluing of present for future that never comes, is too common.

    Actually there is a Japanese fairy story this kind of attitude reminds me of, and which has sent a chill down my spine when I read it because it is a danger for my own personality type – of the boy who loses his youth in a kind of dream under the sea. But I won’t say more about this story.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    I don't think you're understanding me. I will try to be clearer.

    It seems to me you are saying that I am losing the present - such as it is - by dreaming of a future that may never arrive.

    My goal is to flourish right now, this moment, not merely dream of a starry eyed future. However, I also want to create a better future. To do both, I must understand how the current order - intellectual, social, and physical - is failing me.

    I can then apply these insights right now to my life, as well as help fashion a better future. There is no tension between the two. I am not sacrificing one for the other - they interpenetrate. And if sacrifice must be made, that is a part of living better now - if sacrifice is a part of human flourishing.

    Now, the idea that we should not try and create a better system if the current one is failing, because this would be starry eyed dreaming and lead us to live in Japanese sea caves, is merely the despair and fatalism that the current order itself gives rise to - and why it is not conducive to human flourishing, and why it is in the process of dissolution. Imagine if Asians under colonialism had had similar attitudes.

    If you are loyal to the current system - you have chosen death and decay. Not just as this society crumbles, but in a more basic sense in your psychological and emotional life, in the here and now - as you accept the attitudes and practices of this system and are loyal to them. Your health will suffer, as will your mind, and your happiness.

    I will pity you, but I will not stop you. That you are proud of being an underminer of the attempt to figure out why the current system is failing, and applying these insights to our personal lives as well as helping create a better future, is itself a symptom of the decay current system.

    But so it goes. You are free to choose senescence, decay, and collapse.

    , @AaronB

    As someone talks about religion, Indians, etc, I expected some reply that atman is not touched by such superficial things as society.
     
    I just wanted to make a comment about this - the very idea of Atman is that we are all part of the larger whole. We cannot help but be affected by the society and environment we live, and even the entire consciousness of the human race. We are not individual units.

    Of course, one must make some effort to free oneself from the negative influences of one's environment, and then contribute to reshaping it by personal example - not aggressive advocacy - and the very fact that one has achieved a higher viewpoint will send ripples throughout the the web of human consciousness. And what is this higher viewpoint? Simply that we are not individual units, but one with the universe. That you are me, and I am you. We interpenetrate.

    So the idea that Indian religion or philosophy encourages a lack of concern for society and other people is an absolute falsehood - it's essence is the recognition that we are not individual units but part of a larger web.

    You got it exactly backwards. As a subverter of the principle of unity and an advocate for atomistic materialism, I expect no less from you :)

    I am sure Epicurianism also does not advocate atomistic individualism with no social concern - no healthy philosophy can. I seem to remember something about Epicurianism praising friendship as the highest ideal and something about small groups of friends joining together in a garden...

  134. @AaronB
    Since it's the only way human life can flourish, it will inevitably return - just not for the current generation.

    My mistake before was to seperate earthly flourishing from spiritual flourishing - if you do that, then all sorts of nightmare scenarios emerge where the materialists may rule forever and make this world a place of endless dreariness.

    What should have been obvious - and what is becoming increasingly obvious, is that earthy thriving is a function of spiritual health. My recent engagement with modern Asian culture has brought this lesson home - the more I dabbled even in Asian pop culture, the more surprised and shocked I was to discover a level of moral and spiritual health that I didn't think existed in 2018 in modernized countries that are technological powerhouses. The picture is far from perfect, but I was still shocked at how pure and innocent so much of their culture still is, as opposed to our corrosive irony and materialism.

    I would not be surprised to find purity and innocence and spiritual health in Yemen, because I thought these things are incompatible with modernity. But I now see that any kind of physical flourishing - whether in Yemen as a healthy organic community that preserves and perpetuates itself - or in Japan, which has adopted technology, depends on spiritual health.

    Right now there is an epidemic of ill health in America - obesity, general ill health, anxiety, psychosomatic symptoms of all kinds - I can't tell you how many apparently healthy people I know who seem to be physically declining in some weird way, who seem to always be complaining about their health, and to have all sorts of strange anxieties.

    And this is among the elite striving class here in New York, which is supposed to be healthy (obesity doesn't exist here, at least). The other day I was just struck by how weird it all was, how I never hear this stuff in other countries, especially Asian ones.

    It struck me that our world views may have serious effects on our physical being - materialism may actually lead to physical decline, and I started thinking about how physical flourishing here on earth seems fundamentally connected to healthy spirituality in general, and all sorts of examples started popping into my head....

    My mistake before was to seperate earthly flourishing from spiritual flourishing

    Right! There has to be a balance. Even too much spiritual without proper attention paid to the earthly will not give good results. For instance, if monasticism is part of a small number of people, that is manageable. If it spreads throughout society and becomes the pattern of life too many people choose, your society will fail.

    and to have all sorts of strange anxieties

    My spiritual teachers have mentioned that the majority of these cases of depression and anxiety that peoplle complain about is due to lack of spiritual health. Sure, you get true cases where someone’s physical chemical constitution is at imbalance, but the majority of people are simply exhibiting a normal symptom. They have neglected their spirit and it is gasping for air it’s sending distress signals which manifest themselves in physical symptoms. To get medication to mask the symptom is the wrong approach because your body is simply reflecting your spiritual state.

    physical flourishing here on earth seems fundamentally connected to healthy spirituality

    Agreed. You mentioned Yemen. One of my roommates form UCLA went to go study at this institution:

    In fact, he knows the young man from the US they interviewed (he is now a scholar and travels through the US to teach). Anyway, my friend mentioned it was a surreal place. Life was on the tough side, but people were genuinely at peace and content.

    Peace.

    Note: Your mentioning technology and melding it with the spirit also reminded me of another city in that same area of Yemen. They would have been very impressive to almost anybody from around the world 5 centuries ago:
    “The tall cluster of sun-dried mud brick tower houses of the 16th century walled city of Shibam, which rises out of the cliff edge of Wadi Hadramaut has been described as a ‘Manhattan’ or ‘Chicago’ of the desert. Located at an important caravan halt on the spice and incense route across the Southern Arabian plateau, the city of dwellings up to seven storeys high developed on a fortified, rectangular grid plan of streets and squares.”
    https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/192/gallery/

    Also other beautiful mud-brick architecture from the area called Hadramaut (literally, “Death has arrived”):

    • Agree: AaronB
  135. @AP

    Cossacks are also associated with Russia however
     
    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.

    Novgorod had a republic for 300 years
     
    This was a dead end - Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia.

    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption

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

    If these data are correct there is not much difference.
     
    I stand corrected. Differneces are small indeed. But Ukraine's results are somewhat diluted by the inclusion of Russian Crimea and Donbas (20%) if the population, which would make Ukraine more like Russia in 2010.

    Constitutions were also a big fad in the 18th century. Could’ve happened to Russia as well if they’d suffered from a pozzed Tsar or serious internal revolt.
     
    They were inspired by Classical works and products of Western/Jesuit educations. Russia didn't have that, so a bunch of Russians would not have come up with a constitution involving separation of powers and limited government in the early 18th century. Generations of Jesuit education separate Ukraine from Russia.

    Along those lines, Ukrainians developed their own baroque architecture:

    http://archithusiast.blogspot.com/2012/02/ukrainian-baroque-style.html

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

    (Russians borrowed from this)

    Russian elites have been trying to Westernize on and off for three centuries.
     
    In Ukraine it's more natural and grassroots. In Russia some elite liberals in Moscow vote for pro-Western parties. In Ukraine the majority of ethnic Ukrainians do. Proto-Ukrainians were more antagonistic towards Mongols than Russians were. Conversely, whenever some invader came through Ukraine from the West many Ukrainians were happy to join them.

    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    What do the Hungarians do? Perhaps the Magyar Miracle can chip in.
     
    Here's a chart:

    https://www.indy100.com/article/tea-or-coffee-a-map-of-the-world-according-to-who-prefers-which-of-each-drink--Wkg7X39yAfZ

    Within Europe, Russian tea/coffee percentage is like the UK's, Ukraine's is like Hungary's. More Ukrainians prefer coffee than do Russians. And, keep in mind, Ukraine is still about 15% Russian, so the differences would probably be magnified if we only looked at ethnic Ukrainians.

    I have to again compliment you on your polite demeanor in answering me, which is likely not easy given the subject matter and my own belligerence.
     
    You haven't attacked me personally, and you are an intelligent guy to argue with. But thank you.

    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.

    Sure. That said haven’t Cossacks themselves long been pro-Russian?

    This was a dead end – Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia.

    The Cossack states were also dead ends for the same reason. All of the East Slavic peoples ended up becoming part of the Russian Empire. Novgorod was simply conquered earlier, and it was part of of the RSFSR and is part of the Russian Federation.

    If not for the Russian Revolution and Lenin’s nationalities policies there wouldn’t be a Ukrainian state today, and speakers of the Ukrainian dialect would be down to a dwindling population of old people.

    There were other Russian states as well such as Smolensk, Chernigov, Ryazan, etc.

    They were inspired by Classical works and products of Western/Jesuit educations. Russia didn’t have that, so a bunch of Russians would not have come up with a constitution involving separation of powers and limited government in the early 18th century. Generations of Jesuit education separate Ukraine from Russia.

    Did Orthodox Ukrainians receive a Jesuit education?

    Religious differences are important, but it’s worth pointing out that both Germany and the Netherlands are religiously divided. Even England and France have respective Catholic and Protestant minorities.

    The constitution fetish of the 17th through 19th centuries was the result of the Enlightenment.

    The ancients did not have constitutions as we understand them, though the concept of constitutional law was first explained by Aristotle.

    A rich body of constitutional law developed during the middle ages, especially in the Holy Roman Empire, but this constitutional law was the product of centuries of bargaining and not something created out of whole cloth like the 17th, 18th, and 19th century constitutions liberals fetishized.

    And Russia absolutely had such ideas floating around. Catherine the Great corresponded with Voltaire after all and the Russian nobility spoke French. There were also many Westerners working in the Russian Empire, and the Baltic German nobility was prominent in the the Russian Empire since at least the Treaty of Nystad.

    The Northern Society had as its goal the establishment of a British-style constitutional monarchy in Russia, and Alexander I had liberal political views early in his reign.

    Along those lines, Ukrainians developed their own baroque architecture:

    http://archithusiast.blogspot.com/2012/02/ukrainian-baroque-style.html

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

    (Russians borrowed from this)

    This is interesting and pretty, but to me as a Westerner just all looks Russian.

    In Ukraine it’s more natural and grassroots. In Russia some elite liberals in Moscow vote for pro-Western parties. In Ukraine the majority of ethnic Ukrainians do. Proto-Ukrainians were more antagonistic towards Mongols than Russians were. Conversely, whenever some invader came through Ukraine from the West many Ukrainians were happy to join them.

    Russians had very positive opinions of the West in the 90s and much of the 00s as well. Karlin has documented this in his blog. Vladimir Putin even tried to join NATO in 2000, and he has stated his goal is a common economic space from Lisbon to Vladivostok. Consistent American hostility is the reason this has gone nowhere.

    Ukrainians also elected the Party of the Regions (with support from the Crimea and the Donets Basin of course).

    A number of Russians also defected to the Germans during WW2, most infamously Vlasov.

    • Replies: @AP

    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.

    Sure. That said haven’t Cossacks themselves long been pro-Russian?
     
    Not the Ukrainian ones.

    "This was a dead end – Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia."

    The Cossack states were also dead ends for the same reason.
     
    It was different. Novgorod was destroyed and its people scattered and deported. Ukraine was subjugated but the natives stayed around, remembered what their ancestors had been up to. Ukraine was more like Poland after Poland was taken over. If it had been given the Novgorod treatment we wouldn't be arguing anything now.

    All of the East Slavic peoples ended up becoming part of the Russian Empire.
     
    Other than Galicians (about 10% of Ukrainians).

    If not for the Russian Revolution and Lenin’s nationalities policies there wouldn’t be a Ukrainian state today, and speakers of the Ukrainian dialect would be down to a dwindling population of old people.
     
    Doubtful, percentage of Ukrainian speakers (again, Ukrainian is no more a dialect of Russian than Dutch is a dialect of German, and less so than Swedish a dialect of Danish) weren't declining under the Tsars, who due to 1905 were allowing the Ukrainian language again. As for no Ukrainian state - possible. Ukraine might have ended up like Catalonia. But it would not have been fully assimilated.

    Did Orthodox Ukrainians receive a Jesuit education?
     
    Yes. There were Jesuit schools in Ukraine where Ukrainian elites studied; many but not all converted to Catholicism. Furthermore, the main Orthodox academic institution in Kiev was modeled on the Jesuit schools (even using Latin and Polish as languages of instruction). Russia didn't have that.

    A rich body of constitutional law developed during the middle ages, especially in the Holy Roman Empire, but this constitutional law was the product of centuries of bargaining
     
    Correct, and Ukraine being part of Poland participated in all if this. Russia was separate from it.

    And Russia absolutely had such ideas floating around. Catherine the Great corresponded with Voltaire after all and the Russian nobility spoke French.
     
    And this was about 60 years after Ukraine's constitution. Such ideas were new to Russia but had been floating around in Ukraine since the 17th century. The Northern Society was in the 19th century. A difference between Ukraine and Russia is that Ukraine was part of Europe a couple centuries earlier than was Russia.

    Another difference: private property. Russian peasants tended to join collective mirs, Ukrainians to have their own farms. Stolyopjn's reforms had more effect in Ukraine than in Russia, there was more village capitalism. This emphasis on private property reflects a more Western culture.

    Russians had very positive opinions of the West in the 90s and much of the 00s as well
     
    In Russia there has always been at most ambivalence towards the West. Westernizers vs. Slavophils. Communism was an attempt at modernization that didn't follow Western norms. In Ukraine not so.

    Vlasov was captured unwillingly, first.
    , @AP
    One more point:

    Ukrainians also elected the Party of the Regions (with support from the Crimea and the Donets Basin of course).
     
    He lost the ethnic Ukrainian vote. no Crimea and no Donetsk Basin and no Yanukovich victory.
  136. @utu

    a subtle underminer
     
    New and improved Hasbara v. 2.01

    Yes – a Mossad project, to write comments about atman, underneath English translation of posts by Kholmogorov, and slyly to be skeptical, without having read the badly reviewed books by Solzhenitsyn on the history of Jews, or archipelago GULAG, as works of an artist without historian training.

    I will take it as another compliment that my weirdest and most random opinions on all fields, are somehow logical to others, that can be seen as the agenda of government agencies. Although – with my knowledge of Israel – I would sadly, highly doubt that almost anyone is cultured to be interested in these areas,

    • Replies: @AaronB
    You're not a mossad project - you're just a perfect product of modern fatalism, despair, anomie, and decline, and it's attendant bizarre Jew worship, and the mild, affable, politely ironic attitude that you share with Sailer suggests a certain lethargy and creeping death, and a naturally slavish attitude.

    We must pity you, indulge you, and patiently await the gentle demise of your kind, when revitalization can begin.
  137. @AaronB

    How can you be truly healthy if you’re ashamed of yourself? Accepting the poz is basically telling yourself that you’re evil and need to die. The body reacts accordingly.
     
    Definitely a lot of truth in that. I also think disconnecting from others - no family or community, even in your mind - may lead to physical decline as well.

    People drink a fair amount here in ny, and anecdotally it seems like 50% of the white population smokes, definitely among the hipsters, although I doubt that's substantiated by official figures (maybe people lie).

    But in Japan people binge drink like crazy and smoke a ton, and they're one of the healthiest countries around. We're probably a bit too Puritan about this stuff - but really I think you have to look at drinking and smoking as part of a total lifestyle. Japanese work hard and drink hard - somehow that provides balance, even if not optimal, and they stay thin and eat well. And they dont hate themselves. Somehow binge drinking in America leads to serious health issues.

    There's this wonderful Chinese story of the Seven Sages Of The Bamboo Grove, basically Taoist sages who retired from the world and drank like fishes from the afternoon on. Drinking can be a part of spiritual practice, though Talha won't like to hear it :)

    There's something seriously death cultish in the American war on pleasure and obsession with work. But everything must be seen as part of a totality. In another context limiting pleasure may be quite healthy and spiritually necessary.

    Drinking can be a part of spiritual practice, though Talha won’t like to hear it

    Actually, I agree with you in principle here. There is a reason why the Sufi poetry from Persia and the Levant (at times North Africa as well) often uses the metaphor of the tavern and wine and drunkenness when talking about profound spiritual matters and experiential knowledge of the Divine. They may not have been drinkers themselves (though some definitely were before they repented and became awliya), but they found intoxication and loss of faculties and intellect to be a suitable analogy for when one is experiencing and recognizing the annihilatory nature of oneself. It was definitely not completely sound, but that is how it is with the “taste” of spiritual states, you can only describe them by means of other tastes – like you might describe one fruit tasting like another.

    Peace.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    Interesting, yes I do remember there was some connection between Sufism and wine drinking. Thanks go clarifying.

    Buddhism is also against alcohol, btw, although Taoism is for it.

    Thanks for the magnificent pictures of Yemen!
  138. @Thorfinnsson


    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century:
     
    Cossacks are also associated with Russia however, and Novgorod had a republic for 300 years.

    Constitutions were also a big fad in the 18th century. Could've happened to Russia as well if they'd suffered from a pozzed Tsar or serious internal revolt. It's not like Prussia wanted to grant a constitution for instance, yet it did anyway.


    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
     
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_alcohol_consumption_per_capita

    If these data are correct there is not much difference. This is also from 2010 and Russian consumption has dropped since then owing to anti-alcohol measures.

    Poland's consumption is also quite high as well.


    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
     
    Russian elites have been trying to Westernize on and off for three centuries.

    Recent Russian antagonism towards the West is based on our own hostile behavior.


    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)
     
    What do the Hungarians do? Perhaps the Magyar Miracle can chip in.

    There is an interesting difference in between Russia and the UK on tea. Russians I believe take their tea with lemon juice, whereas the UK takes their tea with cream.

    Personally I drink coffee and tea as they're both great. :)

    I have to again compliment you on your polite demeanor in answering me, which is likely not easy given the subject matter and my own belligerence. Certainly an improvement over Mr. Hack and his love of punitive psychiatry.

    There is an interesting difference in between Russia and the UK on tea. Russians I believe take their tea with lemon juice, whereas the UK takes their tea with cream.

    The difference is sometimes making a strong tea, and then diluting it with water. For British (who famous connoisseurs about tea), this is seen as a kind of crime against tea.

    As for a question about using milk or not? – actually in London, you will find they are often drinking tea without milk. For example, Twining’s Earl Grey (tea flavored with Bergamot) is not supposed to be with milk. And they give at the restaurant you milk only separately if you want it.

    • Replies: @YetAnotherAnon
    "Twining’s Earl Grey (tea flavored with Bergamot) is not supposed to be with milk."

    But many Brits do drink it with milk, I'm one of them.

    Incidentally Twinings, that most British of companies, moved production of their tea to Poland for the lower wages, as a result of which I no longer buy their products. Not because of dislike of the Poles (I'm happy to drink a Tyskie or two), but because the company expect Brits to buy their tea, but no longer want to pay them to make it.

    (They are owned by Associated "British" Foods, a multinational)
  139. AP says:
    @Thorfinnsson


    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.
     
    Sure. That said haven't Cossacks themselves long been pro-Russian?

    This was a dead end – Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia.
     
    The Cossack states were also dead ends for the same reason. All of the East Slavic peoples ended up becoming part of the Russian Empire. Novgorod was simply conquered earlier, and it was part of of the RSFSR and is part of the Russian Federation.

    If not for the Russian Revolution and Lenin's nationalities policies there wouldn't be a Ukrainian state today, and speakers of the Ukrainian dialect would be down to a dwindling population of old people.

    There were other Russian states as well such as Smolensk, Chernigov, Ryazan, etc.


    They were inspired by Classical works and products of Western/Jesuit educations. Russia didn’t have that, so a bunch of Russians would not have come up with a constitution involving separation of powers and limited government in the early 18th century. Generations of Jesuit education separate Ukraine from Russia.
     
    Did Orthodox Ukrainians receive a Jesuit education?

    Religious differences are important, but it's worth pointing out that both Germany and the Netherlands are religiously divided. Even England and France have respective Catholic and Protestant minorities.

    The constitution fetish of the 17th through 19th centuries was the result of the Enlightenment.

    The ancients did not have constitutions as we understand them, though the concept of constitutional law was first explained by Aristotle.

    A rich body of constitutional law developed during the middle ages, especially in the Holy Roman Empire, but this constitutional law was the product of centuries of bargaining and not something created out of whole cloth like the 17th, 18th, and 19th century constitutions liberals fetishized.

    And Russia absolutely had such ideas floating around. Catherine the Great corresponded with Voltaire after all and the Russian nobility spoke French. There were also many Westerners working in the Russian Empire, and the Baltic German nobility was prominent in the the Russian Empire since at least the Treaty of Nystad.

    The Northern Society had as its goal the establishment of a British-style constitutional monarchy in Russia, and Alexander I had liberal political views early in his reign.


    Along those lines, Ukrainians developed their own baroque architecture:

    http://archithusiast.blogspot.com/2012/02/ukrainian-baroque-style.html

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

    (Russians borrowed from this)
     
    This is interesting and pretty, but to me as a Westerner just all looks Russian.


    In Ukraine it’s more natural and grassroots. In Russia some elite liberals in Moscow vote for pro-Western parties. In Ukraine the majority of ethnic Ukrainians do. Proto-Ukrainians were more antagonistic towards Mongols than Russians were. Conversely, whenever some invader came through Ukraine from the West many Ukrainians were happy to join them.
     
    Russians had very positive opinions of the West in the 90s and much of the 00s as well. Karlin has documented this in his blog. Vladimir Putin even tried to join NATO in 2000, and he has stated his goal is a common economic space from Lisbon to Vladivostok. Consistent American hostility is the reason this has gone nowhere.

    Ukrainians also elected the Party of the Regions (with support from the Crimea and the Donets Basin of course).

    A number of Russians also defected to the Germans during WW2, most infamously Vlasov.

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/60/Bundesarchiv_Bild_101I-297-1704-10%2C_Nordfrankreich%2C_Angehörige_der_Wlassow-Armee_Recolored.jpg

    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.

    Sure. That said haven’t Cossacks themselves long been pro-Russian?

    Not the Ukrainian ones.

    “This was a dead end – Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia.”

    The Cossack states were also dead ends for the same reason.

    It was different. Novgorod was destroyed and its people scattered and deported. Ukraine was subjugated but the natives stayed around, remembered what their ancestors had been up to. Ukraine was more like Poland after Poland was taken over. If it had been given the Novgorod treatment we wouldn’t be arguing anything now.

    All of the East Slavic peoples ended up becoming part of the Russian Empire.

    Other than Galicians (about 10% of Ukrainians).

    If not for the Russian Revolution and Lenin’s nationalities policies there wouldn’t be a Ukrainian state today, and speakers of the Ukrainian dialect would be down to a dwindling population of old people.

    Doubtful, percentage of Ukrainian speakers (again, Ukrainian is no more a dialect of Russian than Dutch is a dialect of German, and less so than Swedish a dialect of Danish) weren’t declining under the Tsars, who due to 1905 were allowing the Ukrainian language again. As for no Ukrainian state – possible. Ukraine might have ended up like Catalonia. But it would not have been fully assimilated.

    Did Orthodox Ukrainians receive a Jesuit education?

    Yes. There were Jesuit schools in Ukraine where Ukrainian elites studied; many but not all converted to Catholicism. Furthermore, the main Orthodox academic institution in Kiev was modeled on the Jesuit schools (even using Latin and Polish as languages of instruction). Russia didn’t have that.

    A rich body of constitutional law developed during the middle ages, especially in the Holy Roman Empire, but this constitutional law was the product of centuries of bargaining

    Correct, and Ukraine being part of Poland participated in all if this. Russia was separate from it.

    And Russia absolutely had such ideas floating around. Catherine the Great corresponded with Voltaire after all and the Russian nobility spoke French.

    And this was about 60 years after Ukraine’s constitution. Such ideas were new to Russia but had been floating around in Ukraine since the 17th century. The Northern Society was in the 19th century. A difference between Ukraine and Russia is that Ukraine was part of Europe a couple centuries earlier than was Russia.

    Another difference: private property. Russian peasants tended to join collective mirs, Ukrainians to have their own farms. Stolyopjn’s reforms had more effect in Ukraine than in Russia, there was more village capitalism. This emphasis on private property reflects a more Western culture.

    Russians had very positive opinions of the West in the 90s and much of the 00s as well

    In Russia there has always been at most ambivalence towards the West. Westernizers vs. Slavophils. Communism was an attempt at modernization that didn’t follow Western norms. In Ukraine not so.

    Vlasov was captured unwillingly, first.

    • Replies: @melanf

    Not the Ukrainian ones.
     
    Ukrainian Cossacks were quite Pro-Russian. But another thing is that these Cossacks were thugs and murderers, and their short-lived "state" was the equivalent of a modern Libya (various gang of Cossacks waged a constant war with each other).
    , @jilles dykstra
    Who is interested in the bewildering movements of peoples and ideologies in E Europe, that is from present Poland to the Caspian Sea, I can recommend
    Kevin Alan Brook, 'The Jews of Khazaria', Northvale NJ, 1999
    One thing is clear, Kiev is a very old city.
    In my opinion the book was written with a pro jewish bias, nevertheless, an interesting book.
  140. Anonymous [AKA "paterson"] says:

    As usual, Karlin is stuck in the zeitgeist of early 90’s Russia. Parvus’ big role in Russian revolution has long been debunked as a Cold War myth. Solzhenitsyn is now understood for what he was: a liar, a snitch and later on, after he defected, a CIA shill. Yawn. Russia is a rather cynical society right now, permeated by a strange mix of nostalgia for her soviet greatness and a very ugly and raw capitalist greed.

    • Agree: melanf
    • Disagree: YetAnotherAnon
  141. Excellent and informative. Thank you for the translation.

  142. @Bigly

    If the choice were German instead of Russian I could understand of course. Probably many “Ukrainians” actually think this is an option based on EU fantasies.
     
    My feeling as well. I think that most pro-EU svidomites want to join the EU in order to move to an affluent European country. Germany would be their top destination. There they can rejoice in poz and export its most exotic expressions to Ukraine as the latest European trends.

    In 50 years, Ukrainians will be nigger-loving Russophobes, unless they don't prevail in Donbass, which they won't, thankfully.

    I think of Ukraine as I think of Bavaria in the past: a Germanic people with separatist tendencies who nevertheless remained within the unified German nation. Ukraine could have a regional identity, whose preservation would be wayyy more guaranteed within Russia than under Western rule.

    I think of Ukraine as I think of Bavaria in the past

    This is because you are ignorant and gullible.

  143. @Thorfinnsson


    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.
     
    Sure. That said haven't Cossacks themselves long been pro-Russian?

    This was a dead end – Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia.
     
    The Cossack states were also dead ends for the same reason. All of the East Slavic peoples ended up becoming part of the Russian Empire. Novgorod was simply conquered earlier, and it was part of of the RSFSR and is part of the Russian Federation.

    If not for the Russian Revolution and Lenin's nationalities policies there wouldn't be a Ukrainian state today, and speakers of the Ukrainian dialect would be down to a dwindling population of old people.

    There were other Russian states as well such as Smolensk, Chernigov, Ryazan, etc.


    They were inspired by Classical works and products of Western/Jesuit educations. Russia didn’t have that, so a bunch of Russians would not have come up with a constitution involving separation of powers and limited government in the early 18th century. Generations of Jesuit education separate Ukraine from Russia.
     
    Did Orthodox Ukrainians receive a Jesuit education?

    Religious differences are important, but it's worth pointing out that both Germany and the Netherlands are religiously divided. Even England and France have respective Catholic and Protestant minorities.

    The constitution fetish of the 17th through 19th centuries was the result of the Enlightenment.

    The ancients did not have constitutions as we understand them, though the concept of constitutional law was first explained by Aristotle.

    A rich body of constitutional law developed during the middle ages, especially in the Holy Roman Empire, but this constitutional law was the product of centuries of bargaining and not something created out of whole cloth like the 17th, 18th, and 19th century constitutions liberals fetishized.

    And Russia absolutely had such ideas floating around. Catherine the Great corresponded with Voltaire after all and the Russian nobility spoke French. There were also many Westerners working in the Russian Empire, and the Baltic German nobility was prominent in the the Russian Empire since at least the Treaty of Nystad.

    The Northern Society had as its goal the establishment of a British-style constitutional monarchy in Russia, and Alexander I had liberal political views early in his reign.


    Along those lines, Ukrainians developed their own baroque architecture:

    http://archithusiast.blogspot.com/2012/02/ukrainian-baroque-style.html

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

    (Russians borrowed from this)
     
    This is interesting and pretty, but to me as a Westerner just all looks Russian.


    In Ukraine it’s more natural and grassroots. In Russia some elite liberals in Moscow vote for pro-Western parties. In Ukraine the majority of ethnic Ukrainians do. Proto-Ukrainians were more antagonistic towards Mongols than Russians were. Conversely, whenever some invader came through Ukraine from the West many Ukrainians were happy to join them.
     
    Russians had very positive opinions of the West in the 90s and much of the 00s as well. Karlin has documented this in his blog. Vladimir Putin even tried to join NATO in 2000, and he has stated his goal is a common economic space from Lisbon to Vladivostok. Consistent American hostility is the reason this has gone nowhere.

    Ukrainians also elected the Party of the Regions (with support from the Crimea and the Donets Basin of course).

    A number of Russians also defected to the Germans during WW2, most infamously Vlasov.

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/60/Bundesarchiv_Bild_101I-297-1704-10%2C_Nordfrankreich%2C_Angehörige_der_Wlassow-Armee_Recolored.jpg

    One more point:

    Ukrainians also elected the Party of the Regions (with support from the Crimea and the Donets Basin of course).

    He lost the ethnic Ukrainian vote. no Crimea and no Donetsk Basin and no Yanukovich victory.

  144. @Dmitry
    You can keep in a mental image of a healthy society - sure, this can be enjoyable game to think about, which people have done throughout history (literary genre of utopia).*

    But then to use the mental image, to put present commentators point of view, including yourself and some others, as a some product of the sick society, because it is very distant from the mental image.

    As someone talks about religion, Indians, etc, I expected some reply that atman is not touched by such superficial things as society.

    I don't have such extreme views myself - but for something I prefer, the viewpoint and even practice of Epicurus* can be followed today, no more or less than in his own time, or just as many thousand years into the future.

    -

    * https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utopia

    * https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Epicurus


    Clearly, envisioning a healthy and sane society is highly relevant both for our individual wellbeing in the here and now and for helping to fashion, possibly, a better future, and to help others now achieve well being.

    You, Dmitry, are a subtle underminer :) And not just from this comment…
     
    I will take it as a compliment.

    It reminds of my mother, who has dreamed about the new kitchen. And we had installed the new kitchen, and a few days later already talking about a bathroom. Eventually installed a
    new bathroom, and then the next day already about the need to have new paint on the walls. And "when everything is right I'll be happy, we can invite people over", but as some distant things always pushed into the future.

    It also reminds, when I read people on the urban forums - 'the city still looks terrible, but just wait another a few more years, after the new pavements, etc, and we can enjoy it', etc, etc. Probably just the kind of attitude that will attract the devil to kill you before it happens, as not make advantage of the present is one of the greatest sins.

    Of course, in politics this kind of devaluing of present for future that never comes, is too common.

    Actually there is a Japanese fairy story this kind of attitude reminds me of, and which has sent a chill down my spine when I read it because it is a danger for my own personality type - of the boy who loses his youth in a kind of dream under the sea. But I won't say more about this story.

    I don’t think you’re understanding me. I will try to be clearer.

    It seems to me you are saying that I am losing the present – such as it is – by dreaming of a future that may never arrive.

    My goal is to flourish right now, this moment, not merely dream of a starry eyed future. However, I also want to create a better future. To do both, I must understand how the current order – intellectual, social, and physical – is failing me.

    I can then apply these insights right now to my life, as well as help fashion a better future. There is no tension between the two. I am not sacrificing one for the other – they interpenetrate. And if sacrifice must be made, that is a part of living better now – if sacrifice is a part of human flourishing.

    Now, the idea that we should not try and create a better system if the current one is failing, because this would be starry eyed dreaming and lead us to live in Japanese sea caves, is merely the despair and fatalism that the current order itself gives rise to – and why it is not conducive to human flourishing, and why it is in the process of dissolution. Imagine if Asians under colonialism had had similar attitudes.

    If you are loyal to the current system – you have chosen death and decay. Not just as this society crumbles, but in a more basic sense in your psychological and emotional life, in the here and now – as you accept the attitudes and practices of this system and are loyal to them. Your health will suffer, as will your mind, and your happiness.

    I will pity you, but I will not stop you. That you are proud of being an underminer of the attempt to figure out why the current system is failing, and applying these insights to our personal lives as well as helping create a better future, is itself a symptom of the decay current system.

    But so it goes. You are free to choose senescence, decay, and collapse.

    • Replies: @renfro

    My goal is to flourish right now, this moment, not merely dream of a starry eyed future. However, I also want to create a better future. To do both, I must understand how the current order – intellectual, social, and physical – is failing me
     
    With all due respect you have been writing about your better future dream and how you must study the current order to understand how it is failing you for months and months and months and months.

    Answer the question of exactly how the current order is failing you, in what ways... in ten sentences--no more---and I will tell you why.
  145. @Dmitry
    Yes - a Mossad project, to write comments about atman, underneath English translation of posts by Kholmogorov, and slyly to be skeptical, without having read the badly reviewed books by Solzhenitsyn on the history of Jews, or archipelago GULAG, as works of an artist without historian training.

    I will take it as another compliment that my weirdest and most random opinions on all fields, are somehow logical to others, that can be seen as the agenda of government agencies. Although - with my knowledge of Israel - I would sadly, highly doubt that almost anyone is cultured to be interested in these areas,

    You’re not a mossad project – you’re just a perfect product of modern fatalism, despair, anomie, and decline, and it’s attendant bizarre Jew worship, and the mild, affable, politely ironic attitude that you share with Sailer suggests a certain lethargy and creeping death, and a naturally slavish attitude.

    We must pity you, indulge you, and patiently await the gentle demise of your kind, when revitalization can begin.

  146. @Talha

    Drinking can be a part of spiritual practice, though Talha won’t like to hear it
     
    Actually, I agree with you in principle here. There is a reason why the Sufi poetry from Persia and the Levant (at times North Africa as well) often uses the metaphor of the tavern and wine and drunkenness when talking about profound spiritual matters and experiential knowledge of the Divine. They may not have been drinkers themselves (though some definitely were before they repented and became awliya), but they found intoxication and loss of faculties and intellect to be a suitable analogy for when one is experiencing and recognizing the annihilatory nature of oneself. It was definitely not completely sound, but that is how it is with the "taste" of spiritual states, you can only describe them by means of other tastes - like you might describe one fruit tasting like another.

    Peace.

    Interesting, yes I do remember there was some connection between Sufism and wine drinking. Thanks go clarifying.

    Buddhism is also against alcohol, btw, although Taoism is for it.

    Thanks for the magnificent pictures of Yemen!

  147. @AP

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they’re Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells
     
    * politically, Ukrainians prefer plurality (which can become chaotic) whereas Russian instinct is to gravitate towards an autocratic ruler
    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
    *Ukrainian folk music quite different and more complex, using different instruments
    * Carol of the Bells is the only cultural achievement any Westerner such as you has heard of, there is a rich musical tradition
    *Ukrainians much more traditionally moralistic (lower divorce, abortion rates)
    *Ukrainians much more church-going
    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    With a hill billy nationalism and convoluted spin of history, pro-Bandera Galicia-Volhyn Ukrainians are renown for being quite xenophobic towards a range of others. That mindset has extended within elements of the Ukrainian diaspora and in varying parts of Ukraine outside of Galicia and Volhyn.

    Ukrainians thinking more long my lines have observed this as have others.

    Many Russians have an internationalist view that wasn’t the result of Communism. Russians have historically accepted many non-Russians who showed a friendliness and loyalty towards them. Many of those stating an ethnic Russian background readily and proudly reference being of other backgrounds as well.

    Russia has reached out to the West. The current Russian apprehension with the West is a quite understandable response to the anti-Russian biases that have influenced many in the West.

    Thru the centuries, Russia has experienced democratic trappings – something that was (as a rarity) brought up in a recent WaPo oped-ed that JRL ran.

    So much for the sugar coated svidomite stereotyping.

    • Replies: @Bigly
    Link to the WaPo article?
  148. @AP
    Basically all educated Ukrainians studied with Jesuits - another contrast between Ukraine and Russia.

    Basically all educated Ukrainians studied with Jesuits – another contrast between Ukraine and Russia.

    Going back when? Certainly not in more recent history. Among others, the great Russo-Ukrainian literary figure Gogol didn’t think so highly of that experience.

  149. @Gerard2

    * politically, Ukrainians prefer plurality (which can become chaotic) whereas Russian instinct is to gravitate towards an autocratic ruler
    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
    *Ukrainian folk music quite different and more complex, using different instruments
    * Carol of the Bells is the only cultural achievement any Westerner such as you has heard of, there is a rich musical tradition
    *Ukrainians much more traditionally moralistic (lower divorce, abortion rates)
    *Ukrainians much more church-going
    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)
     
    hahaha! Difficult to know where to start with a post that is lies from start-to-finish....particularly when it;s some fucked in the head troll-bot on some algorith to spend 12 hours on here again , writing 250000 words of pre-prorammed garbage....but that is the point of a retard as yourself...to waste the time of serious people by swamping the board with imbecilic attention-whoring garbage

    For sure.

  150. @AP

    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.

    Sure. That said haven’t Cossacks themselves long been pro-Russian?
     
    Not the Ukrainian ones.

    "This was a dead end – Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia."

    The Cossack states were also dead ends for the same reason.
     
    It was different. Novgorod was destroyed and its people scattered and deported. Ukraine was subjugated but the natives stayed around, remembered what their ancestors had been up to. Ukraine was more like Poland after Poland was taken over. If it had been given the Novgorod treatment we wouldn't be arguing anything now.

    All of the East Slavic peoples ended up becoming part of the Russian Empire.
     
    Other than Galicians (about 10% of Ukrainians).

    If not for the Russian Revolution and Lenin’s nationalities policies there wouldn’t be a Ukrainian state today, and speakers of the Ukrainian dialect would be down to a dwindling population of old people.
     
    Doubtful, percentage of Ukrainian speakers (again, Ukrainian is no more a dialect of Russian than Dutch is a dialect of German, and less so than Swedish a dialect of Danish) weren't declining under the Tsars, who due to 1905 were allowing the Ukrainian language again. As for no Ukrainian state - possible. Ukraine might have ended up like Catalonia. But it would not have been fully assimilated.

    Did Orthodox Ukrainians receive a Jesuit education?
     
    Yes. There were Jesuit schools in Ukraine where Ukrainian elites studied; many but not all converted to Catholicism. Furthermore, the main Orthodox academic institution in Kiev was modeled on the Jesuit schools (even using Latin and Polish as languages of instruction). Russia didn't have that.

    A rich body of constitutional law developed during the middle ages, especially in the Holy Roman Empire, but this constitutional law was the product of centuries of bargaining
     
    Correct, and Ukraine being part of Poland participated in all if this. Russia was separate from it.

    And Russia absolutely had such ideas floating around. Catherine the Great corresponded with Voltaire after all and the Russian nobility spoke French.
     
    And this was about 60 years after Ukraine's constitution. Such ideas were new to Russia but had been floating around in Ukraine since the 17th century. The Northern Society was in the 19th century. A difference between Ukraine and Russia is that Ukraine was part of Europe a couple centuries earlier than was Russia.

    Another difference: private property. Russian peasants tended to join collective mirs, Ukrainians to have their own farms. Stolyopjn's reforms had more effect in Ukraine than in Russia, there was more village capitalism. This emphasis on private property reflects a more Western culture.

    Russians had very positive opinions of the West in the 90s and much of the 00s as well
     
    In Russia there has always been at most ambivalence towards the West. Westernizers vs. Slavophils. Communism was an attempt at modernization that didn't follow Western norms. In Ukraine not so.

    Vlasov was captured unwillingly, first.

    Not the Ukrainian ones.

    Ukrainian Cossacks were quite Pro-Russian. But another thing is that these Cossacks were thugs and murderers, and their short-lived “state” was the equivalent of a modern Libya (various gang of Cossacks waged a constant war with each other).

    • Replies: @AP

    their short-lived “state” was the equivalent of a modern Libya (various gang of Cossacks waged a constant war with each other
     
    Modern Libya isn't known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.

    Cossack State was.
    , @AP

    Ukrainian Cossacks were quite Pro-Russian
     
    Like Cossacks under Sahaidachny, who helped the Poles take Moscow and massacred as many Russians as they could get their hands on and sold many more to the Turks? How about his assistent who specialized in impaling Moscow boyars?

    Khmelytsky clashing with Russia over Belarus and them plotting with Swedes against Rusia before his death?

    His successor Vyhovsky allying with Poles?

    Doroshenko allying with Turks against Russia?

    Mazepa allying with Swedes?

    How about this guy. Obscure, but an interesting story:

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

    Count Vasily Vasilievich Kapnist (Russian: Василий Васильевич Капнист), (23 February 1758 – 9 November 1823), was a Russian poet and playwright of Greek origin.

    Kapnist's grandfather was a Venetian merchant of Greek origin from the island of Zakynthos. He was a descendant of the Venetian noble family of Capnissi (whose name derives from the Zakynthos surname Καπνίσης[1]), he spent all his life in the manor of Obukhovka near Poltava. Vasily's maternal ancestors were Cossack starshyna.

    Kapnist revealed himself as a savage satirist in his most famous work, a satirical verse drama based on the poet's litigation against a neighbour and aptly entitled Chicane (1798). His victims are the judges and officers of law, whom he paints as an unredeemed lot of thieves and extortioners. The play is in rather harsh Alexandrines but produces a powerful effect by the force of its passionate sarcasm. The poem is based on the Russian custom of state-appointed judges, whereas in Ukraine the judges were previously elected. The poem caused the Czar's extreme displeasure, and he ordered Kapnist "to be erased from memory", causing total ban on any of his literary efforts.

    Although Kapnist dedicated his play to Emperor Paul, it was denounced by the censorship as scurrilous and libertarian. Banned after only four performances, it was not revived in St. Petersburg until 1805. According to D.S. Mirsky, "the two greatest Russian comedies of the 19th century, Griboyedov's Woe from Wit and Gogol's Inspector General, owe not a little to the crude and primitive comedy of Kapnist".[2]

    Kapnist was a proponent of the restoration of Ukrainian autonomy in the Russian Empire after Hetmanate was abolished by Catherine II. In 1788, he wrote a petition proposing the empress to restore the cossack host in Ukrainian lands and use its soldiers in the ongoing war against Turkey. However, when the military situation improved, the imperial government refused to implement this plan.[3] In April 1791, either Kapnist or one of his brothers had a secret meeting with Prussian chancellor Ewald Friedrich Graf von Hertzberg, trying to persuade the Prussian government to declare war on Russia in case an uprising starts against Russian rule in Ukraine. However, this mission was unsuccessful as king Friedrich Wilhelm II refused to give his own consent for such an action.

    :::::::::::::

    Ukrainians forced under Russian rule do what they do: typically involved in some anti-Russian plots with Russia's Western rivals.
  151. @Thorfinnsson


    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century:
     
    Cossacks are also associated with Russia however, and Novgorod had a republic for 300 years.

    Constitutions were also a big fad in the 18th century. Could've happened to Russia as well if they'd suffered from a pozzed Tsar or serious internal revolt. It's not like Prussia wanted to grant a constitution for instance, yet it did anyway.


    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
     
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_alcohol_consumption_per_capita

    If these data are correct there is not much difference. This is also from 2010 and Russian consumption has dropped since then owing to anti-alcohol measures.

    Poland's consumption is also quite high as well.


    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
     
    Russian elites have been trying to Westernize on and off for three centuries.

    Recent Russian antagonism towards the West is based on our own hostile behavior.


    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)
     
    What do the Hungarians do? Perhaps the Magyar Miracle can chip in.

    There is an interesting difference in between Russia and the UK on tea. Russians I believe take their tea with lemon juice, whereas the UK takes their tea with cream.

    Personally I drink coffee and tea as they're both great. :)

    I have to again compliment you on your polite demeanor in answering me, which is likely not easy given the subject matter and my own belligerence. Certainly an improvement over Mr. Hack and his love of punitive psychiatry.

    In the former Ukrainian SSR, Cossacks tend to be among the more pro-Russian of elements in that former Soviet republic.

    I’ve yet to run into a Catholic or Greek Catholic Cossack.

  152. @AP

    Cossacks are also associated with Russia however
     
    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.

    Novgorod had a republic for 300 years
     
    This was a dead end - Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia.

    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption

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

    If these data are correct there is not much difference.
     
    I stand corrected. Differneces are small indeed. But Ukraine's results are somewhat diluted by the inclusion of Russian Crimea and Donbas (20%) if the population, which would make Ukraine more like Russia in 2010.

    Constitutions were also a big fad in the 18th century. Could’ve happened to Russia as well if they’d suffered from a pozzed Tsar or serious internal revolt.
     
    They were inspired by Classical works and products of Western/Jesuit educations. Russia didn't have that, so a bunch of Russians would not have come up with a constitution involving separation of powers and limited government in the early 18th century. Generations of Jesuit education separate Ukraine from Russia.

    Along those lines, Ukrainians developed their own baroque architecture:

    http://archithusiast.blogspot.com/2012/02/ukrainian-baroque-style.html

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

    (Russians borrowed from this)

    Russian elites have been trying to Westernize on and off for three centuries.
     
    In Ukraine it's more natural and grassroots. In Russia some elite liberals in Moscow vote for pro-Western parties. In Ukraine the majority of ethnic Ukrainians do. Proto-Ukrainians were more antagonistic towards Mongols than Russians were. Conversely, whenever some invader came through Ukraine from the West many Ukrainians were happy to join them.

    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    What do the Hungarians do? Perhaps the Magyar Miracle can chip in.
     
    Here's a chart:

    https://www.indy100.com/article/tea-or-coffee-a-map-of-the-world-according-to-who-prefers-which-of-each-drink--Wkg7X39yAfZ

    Within Europe, Russian tea/coffee percentage is like the UK's, Ukraine's is like Hungary's. More Ukrainians prefer coffee than do Russians. And, keep in mind, Ukraine is still about 15% Russian, so the differences would probably be magnified if we only looked at ethnic Ukrainians.

    I have to again compliment you on your polite demeanor in answering me, which is likely not easy given the subject matter and my own belligerence.
     
    You haven't attacked me personally, and you are an intelligent guy to argue with. But thank you.

    If Poland hadn’t occupied Ukraine for the extended period that it did, things would probably be noticeably different as well.

    You don’t know for sure what would’ve happened vis-a-vis a battle involving Novgorod from centuries ago.

    As previously noted, the Cossacks in the former Ukrainian SSR tend to be among the more pro-Russian of elements in that territory.

  153. @AaronB
    I don't think you're understanding me. I will try to be clearer.

    It seems to me you are saying that I am losing the present - such as it is - by dreaming of a future that may never arrive.

    My goal is to flourish right now, this moment, not merely dream of a starry eyed future. However, I also want to create a better future. To do both, I must understand how the current order - intellectual, social, and physical - is failing me.

    I can then apply these insights right now to my life, as well as help fashion a better future. There is no tension between the two. I am not sacrificing one for the other - they interpenetrate. And if sacrifice must be made, that is a part of living better now - if sacrifice is a part of human flourishing.

    Now, the idea that we should not try and create a better system if the current one is failing, because this would be starry eyed dreaming and lead us to live in Japanese sea caves, is merely the despair and fatalism that the current order itself gives rise to - and why it is not conducive to human flourishing, and why it is in the process of dissolution. Imagine if Asians under colonialism had had similar attitudes.

    If you are loyal to the current system - you have chosen death and decay. Not just as this society crumbles, but in a more basic sense in your psychological and emotional life, in the here and now - as you accept the attitudes and practices of this system and are loyal to them. Your health will suffer, as will your mind, and your happiness.

    I will pity you, but I will not stop you. That you are proud of being an underminer of the attempt to figure out why the current system is failing, and applying these insights to our personal lives as well as helping create a better future, is itself a symptom of the decay current system.

    But so it goes. You are free to choose senescence, decay, and collapse.

    My goal is to flourish right now, this moment, not merely dream of a starry eyed future. However, I also want to create a better future. To do both, I must understand how the current order – intellectual, social, and physical – is failing me

    With all due respect you have been writing about your better future dream and how you must study the current order to understand how it is failing you for months and months and months and months.

    Answer the question of exactly how the current order is failing you, in what ways… in ten sentences–no more—and I will tell you why.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    If I have to answer in under ten words, it would be "lack of "religion", broadly understood".

    Everything else I've been writing about for months is just details.
  154. The only book by Solsjenytsyn I have is the first volume, translated into German, of Russia and the jews.
    The book resembles Mearheimer and Walt, an incredible number of references.
    Both books were not liked by jews.
    What to me the most important statement by S is ‘truth is of great value, one must never tamper with it’.
    Interesting further is S’s disillusion with the west.

  155. @Thorfinnsson

    What differentiates England from Germany? Conquest by French-speaking Normans, which brought with it massive influx of French words, among other changes to the society (such as more Scandinavian-style political culture, the parliamentary system is a Nordic thing). Old English looked like German, after Norman conquest the English language does not.
     

    To this we can add:

    • The North Sea
    • England has been a politically united monarchy for over 1,000 years
    • Germany is Catholic and Lutheran, whereas England is Anglican (who are schismatics rather than true Protestants)
    • Germany was more or less politically divided from the fall of the Hohenstaufens until the Kleindeutsche Lösung resulted in the crowning of Wilhelm I as German Emperor at the Palace of Versailles, and all of Germany was only united from 1938-1945
    • Germany has had many different types of governments including elective monarchies, hereditary monarchies, oligarchic republics (the Free and Imperial Cities), communism, and liberal democracy
    • England has always been a unitary state, Germany was only a unitary state from 1933-1945 and has otherwise been federal or confederal
    • The English are famously empirical and pragmatic, whereas Germans are well-known philosophers
    • The Germans produced classical music, the English produced pop music
    • In addition to 60% of the English language consisting of French, Greek, and Latin words the grammar of English is different than German
    • The English built the world's largest overseas empire and established several daughter countries, the Germans only briefly had an overseas empire which was much smaller. No daughter countries either
    • The English "public school" system is very different from the system of education invented in the Kingdom of Prussia
    • Class is much more salient in England than in Germany
    • The English are known for their humor, the Germans are known for having no sense of humor
    • England is a beer country (though the upper classes long imported wine), whereas Germany is a beer & wine country
    • Gin is the national spirit of England, whereas in Germany it would be schnapps or brandy
    • English sausages have grain in them, German sausages do not
    • England is traditionally a seapower with the world's strongest navy from the early 18th century until 1942; Germany is traditionally a continental power which fielded the strongest army in the world from the time of Roon and Moltke until the debacle at Stalingrad
    • Englishmen like to enjoy nature in the form of "expeditions", whereas Germans enjoy hiking alone
    • Car culture is much stronger in Germany than in the UK
    • The English are more comfortable with free markets than Germans

    You get the point.

    Now as for differences between Russia and the Ukraine:

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they're Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells

    Probably you can come up with more, but nothing on the level of differences between Germany and England.

    The united kingdom falling apart no longer is theoretical.
    UK is England, Scotland and Wales, and, still, N Ireland, Ulster.

  156. Anonymous [AKA "Jason14"] says:

    Bring on that translation!

  157. Many thanks for this article, and would love to see the rest of it.

  158. @AP

    They are more marginal and Russia and associated with regions that border Ukraine. In Ukraine Cossacks actually produced a state.

    Sure. That said haven’t Cossacks themselves long been pro-Russian?
     
    Not the Ukrainian ones.

    "This was a dead end – Russia (that is, Moscow) destroyed Novgorod and scattered its people. Had Novgorod survived it probably would have been its own nation , a fusion of Rus and Scandinavia."

    The Cossack states were also dead ends for the same reason.
     
    It was different. Novgorod was destroyed and its people scattered and deported. Ukraine was subjugated but the natives stayed around, remembered what their ancestors had been up to. Ukraine was more like Poland after Poland was taken over. If it had been given the Novgorod treatment we wouldn't be arguing anything now.

    All of the East Slavic peoples ended up becoming part of the Russian Empire.
     
    Other than Galicians (about 10% of Ukrainians).

    If not for the Russian Revolution and Lenin’s nationalities policies there wouldn’t be a Ukrainian state today, and speakers of the Ukrainian dialect would be down to a dwindling population of old people.
     
    Doubtful, percentage of Ukrainian speakers (again, Ukrainian is no more a dialect of Russian than Dutch is a dialect of German, and less so than Swedish a dialect of Danish) weren't declining under the Tsars, who due to 1905 were allowing the Ukrainian language again. As for no Ukrainian state - possible. Ukraine might have ended up like Catalonia. But it would not have been fully assimilated.

    Did Orthodox Ukrainians receive a Jesuit education?
     
    Yes. There were Jesuit schools in Ukraine where Ukrainian elites studied; many but not all converted to Catholicism. Furthermore, the main Orthodox academic institution in Kiev was modeled on the Jesuit schools (even using Latin and Polish as languages of instruction). Russia didn't have that.

    A rich body of constitutional law developed during the middle ages, especially in the Holy Roman Empire, but this constitutional law was the product of centuries of bargaining
     
    Correct, and Ukraine being part of Poland participated in all if this. Russia was separate from it.

    And Russia absolutely had such ideas floating around. Catherine the Great corresponded with Voltaire after all and the Russian nobility spoke French.
     
    And this was about 60 years after Ukraine's constitution. Such ideas were new to Russia but had been floating around in Ukraine since the 17th century. The Northern Society was in the 19th century. A difference between Ukraine and Russia is that Ukraine was part of Europe a couple centuries earlier than was Russia.

    Another difference: private property. Russian peasants tended to join collective mirs, Ukrainians to have their own farms. Stolyopjn's reforms had more effect in Ukraine than in Russia, there was more village capitalism. This emphasis on private property reflects a more Western culture.

    Russians had very positive opinions of the West in the 90s and much of the 00s as well
     
    In Russia there has always been at most ambivalence towards the West. Westernizers vs. Slavophils. Communism was an attempt at modernization that didn't follow Western norms. In Ukraine not so.

    Vlasov was captured unwillingly, first.

    Who is interested in the bewildering movements of peoples and ideologies in E Europe, that is from present Poland to the Caspian Sea, I can recommend
    Kevin Alan Brook, ‘The Jews of Khazaria’, Northvale NJ, 1999
    One thing is clear, Kiev is a very old city.
    In my opinion the book was written with a pro jewish bias, nevertheless, an interesting book.

  159. @German_reader

    Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.
     
    What's the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.
     
    What's there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn't deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint...but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism
     
    I really don't get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say "biologist" or "racist") can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as "a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism"...I just don't see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let's hope Martyanov will comment on this piece :-)

    @What’s the point in singling out Alexander Parvus…

    A few details of his bio, carefully concealed, gleaned from Wikipedia (of course there are more scholarly writings* would show you the point and why his name is so strenuously avoided:

    “Alexander Lvovich Parvus born Israel Lazarevich Gelfand (1867-1924), was a writer, historian, Marxist Revolutionary and a Senior Member of the Social Democratic Party of Germany…
    Israel Lazarevich Gelfand was born to an ethnic Jewish family on September 8, 1867 in the shtetl of Berazino, Russian Empire, now part of Belarus…
    in the fall of 1888 Gelfand enrolled at the University of Basel, where he studied political economy…
    Alienated from the backwardness of agrarian Russia and the limited political horizons there, Gelfand moved to Germany, joined the Social Democratic Party and befriended German revolutionary Rosa Luxemburg…
    In 1900, he met Vladimir Lenin for the first time, in Munich, each admiring the other’s theoretical works. Parvus encouraged Lenin to begin publishing his revolutionary paper Iskra…
    Parvus’ attempts to become a German citizen proved fruitless…
    However, German counter-intelligence had penetrated part of the socialist revolutionary network and upon reading his writing in the socialist press during the Russo-Japanese War, found Parvus had predicted that Russia would lose the war, resulting in unrest and revolution. When this proved to be the case, Parvus’ prestige among his socialist and other German comrades increased. Thus, German intelligence soon estimated he would be useful in efforts against the Russian Empire.
    During this time he developed the concept of using a foreign war to provoke an internal revolt within a country. It was at this time that Parvus revived, from Karl Marx, the concept-strategy of “permanent revolution”. He communicated this philosophy to Trotsky who then further expanded and developed it. There were broad discussions on the questions of “permanent revolution” within the social democratic movement in the period leading up to 1917. The method was eventually adopted by Vladimir Lenin and the Bolsheviks in Lenin’s April Theses in 1917…
    [After the 1905 revolution] Parvus moved to Istanbul in Turkey, where he lived for five years. There he set up an arms trading company which profited handsomely during the Balkan War. He became the financial and political advisor of the Young Turks. In 1912 he was made editor of Turk Yurdu, their daily newspaper. He worked closely with the triumvirs known as the Three Pashas – Enver, Talat and Cemal – and Finance Minister Djavid Bey. His firm dealt with the deliveries of foodstuffs for the Turkish army and he was a business partner of the Krupp concern, of Vickers Limited, and of the famous arms dealer Basil Zaharov. Arms dealings with Vickers Limited at war time gave basis to the theory that Alexander Parvus was also a British intelligence asset…
    While in Turkey, Parvus became close with German ambassador Hans Freiherr von Wangenheim who was known to be partial to establishing revolutionary fifth columns among the allies. Consequently, Parvus offered his plan via Baron von Wangenheim to the German General Staff: the paralyzing of Russia via general strike, financed by the German government. Von Wangenheim sent Parvus to Berlin where the latter arrived on the 6 March 1915 and presented a 20-page plan titled A preparation of massive political strikes in Russia to the German government…
    Parvus’ detailed plan recommended the division of Russia by sponsoring the Bolshevik faction of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party, encouraging ethnic separatists in various Russian regions, and supporting various writers whose criticism of Tsarism continued during wartime. Basing himself on his 1905 experiences, Parvus theorised that the division of Russia and its loss in the First World War was the best way to bring about a socialist revolution…
    Parvus placed his bets on Lenin, as the latter was not only a radical but willing to accept the sponsorship of the Tsar’s wartime enemy, Germany. The two met in Bern in May 1915 and agreed to collaboration through their organizations, though Lenin remained very careful never to get associated with Parvus in public. There is no certain proof that they ever met face to face again, although there are indications that such a meeting may well have occurred on April 13, 1917 during Lenin’s stop-over in Stockholm…
    German intelligence set up Parvus’ financial network via offshore operations in Copenhagen, setting up relays for German money to get to Russia via fake financial transactions between front organizations. A large part of the transactions of these companies were genuine, but those served to bury the transfer of money to the Bolsheviks, a strategy made feasible by the weak and overburdened fiscal and customs offices in Scandinavia, which were inadequate for the booming black market in these countries during the war…
    After the October Revolution in Russia for obvious political reasons his role was denied and he himself vilified. This continued during Joseph Stalin’s era and sometimes had anti-semitic overtones to it”.

    * “Alexander Helphand-Parvus–Russian Revolutionary and German Patriot”, by Heinz Schurer, in The Russian Review, Vol. 18, No. 4 (Oct., 1959), pp. 313-331

    • Replies: @Anon
    Very informative, thank you. Have you by chance looked into a somewhat similar character vis-à-vis the Hapsburgs played by Thomas Masaryk? I have not been able to get this level of detail.
  160. @AaronB
    A return to religion in some form, not necessarily Christianity, but an appreciation for the numinous and the supernatural that underlies all phenomena and the unseen bonds that units everything (see quantum mechanics), a return to a moral vision and away from mere instrumentalism, a turn away from individualism and towards appreciation for communal life and the rebuilding of social capital in the form of a unifying culture and sense of shared destiny, identity, origin, and purpose, the renewed appreciation for the aesthetic world view, art, poetry, myth, and legend, and the reduction of logic and rationality to important but limited instruments and as not providing unique access to ultimate truth, based on Kant's demonstration that logic consistently applied ends in absurdity and contradiction, and retaining scientific and technological development but reducing their importance and firmly subordination them to a scale of human values that has total human flourishing as its primary principle, and rejects sacrificing emotional and psychological health to the mere development of our physical abilities.

    But this is too great a leap for the older generation of whites to make. They are like Moses staring at a promised land they cannot enter - we must pity them and have compassion for them, and indulge their naive belief in IQ, the supremacy of Jews, and other simplistic materialisms.

    But this is too great a leap for the older generation of whites to make. They are like Moses staring at a promised land they cannot enter – we must pity them and have compassion for them, and indulge their naive belief in IQ, the supremacy of Jews, and other simplistic materialisms.

    This is really over the top, in my opinion, but then I of course am a member of that class of people, at least in terms of age, that you just can’t wait to be rid of.

    Good luck with your brave new world, I don’t envy you.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    It doesn't mean every single member of this generation - there are many exceptions. And I don't say it with glee, but with regret. But at a certain point one must realize that there can be such a thing as a "lost generation". Why not make yourself the exception, rather than taking it personally?

    Perhaps one may say this generation paved the way, but was not able to go all the way - a transitional generation. Moses after all had an honored position. But the limitations in viewpoint of this generation is no longer possible to ignore. Tomorrow, Sailer will come out with another post urging us to accept Jews as our natural masters, and fatalistically telling us we are limited by IQ and effort cannot help us - all with unfailingly polite irony and affability. For all his great virtues, this kind of thing (and much more) can no longer be seen as anything other than a severe obstacle in the way of cultural revitalization.
  161. @renfro

    My goal is to flourish right now, this moment, not merely dream of a starry eyed future. However, I also want to create a better future. To do both, I must understand how the current order – intellectual, social, and physical – is failing me
     
    With all due respect you have been writing about your better future dream and how you must study the current order to understand how it is failing you for months and months and months and months.

    Answer the question of exactly how the current order is failing you, in what ways... in ten sentences--no more---and I will tell you why.

    If I have to answer in under ten words, it would be “lack of “religion”, broadly understood”.

    Everything else I’ve been writing about for months is just details.

    • Replies: @lavoisier

    If I have to answer in under ten words, it would be “lack of “religion”, broadly understood”.
     
    I think this pretty much sums up the malaise that is destroying the West.

    But where is God to be found??

    I know. If you have to ask you are in trouble.
  162. @for-the-record
    But this is too great a leap for the older generation of whites to make. They are like Moses staring at a promised land they cannot enter – we must pity them and have compassion for them, and indulge their naive belief in IQ, the supremacy of Jews, and other simplistic materialisms.

    This is really over the top, in my opinion, but then I of course am a member of that class of people, at least in terms of age, that you just can't wait to be rid of.

    Good luck with your brave new world, I don't envy you.

    It doesn’t mean every single member of this generation – there are many exceptions. And I don’t say it with glee, but with regret. But at a certain point one must realize that there can be such a thing as a “lost generation”. Why not make yourself the exception, rather than taking it personally?

    Perhaps one may say this generation paved the way, but was not able to go all the way – a transitional generation. Moses after all had an honored position. But the limitations in viewpoint of this generation is no longer possible to ignore. Tomorrow, Sailer will come out with another post urging us to accept Jews as our natural masters, and fatalistically telling us we are limited by IQ and effort cannot help us – all with unfailingly polite irony and affability. For all his great virtues, this kind of thing (and much more) can no longer be seen as anything other than a severe obstacle in the way of cultural revitalization.

    • Replies: @utu

    Tomorrow, Sailer will come out with another post urging us to accept Jews as our natural masters, and fatalistically telling us we are limited by IQ and effort cannot help us – all with unfailingly polite irony and affability. For all his great virtues, this kind of thing (and much more) can no longer be seen as anything other than a severe obstacle in the way of cultural revitalization.
     
    Probably you have noticed that not so long ago they have rolled out another artillery piece and the barrage only intensified. I mean Jordan Peterson. Young and youngish men on the right are swallowing it like pelican swallows fish. Or have you ever fed ducks by throwing them bread into a pond?
  163. Alexander Solzhenitsyn-A good white man.

  164. WOW! Anatoly does it again. What a remarkably good writer.
    I typically do numerous short exercises of varying difficulty and intensity throughout the day. These include logic, pattern recognition, mathematical, etc. for the mind… exercises. Reading Anatoly’s above article certainly gave my mind a good workout this morning.
    And yes…..GREAT description of Solzhenitsyn’s contribution as a force of positive change for Russia and the World.
    Keep writing Karlin.

    AK: Well, erm, thanks, but I’m not the author or even the translator of this article; just the editor.

    • Replies: @ChuckOrloski
    Seeker Joe Hide surfaced & wisely wrote:
    "And yes…..GREAT description of Solzhenitsyn’s contribution as a force of positive change for Russia and the World.
    Keep writing Karlin."

    Hi Joe Hide,

    Not to bore you into historical dystopia, but in June 1978, I was employed by Roadway Express, Inc. (REX) as a Teamster dockworker.

    Inside the break bulk-dock "break room," I read a NYT's article on Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's Harvard commencement address. At war with REX's authoritarian management policies, I naturally got into Solzhenitsyn's U.S.A. profile, including his assertion that he "can feel the pressure of evil across our land."

    To be objective, Joe Hide, I will now introduce classy Southern (ZUS) First Lady Rosalyn Carter's opinion on Solzhenitsyn's scathing address, which she delivered to The National Press Club, mid-June '78.

    Rosalyn Carter emphasized her rejection of the exiled Russian writer's scathing criticism of Western society's moral cowardice, selfishness, and decadence. Jimmy's lovely & protected wife added, "I do not not sense that (evil) pressure across our land at all."

    Below is a June 21, 1978 Washington Post article which covered Rosalyn's spirited-speech to the National Press Club.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/politics/1978/06/21/a-rebuttal-to-solzhenitsyn/3b2786d3-893f-4ebe-8595-3324f52000a5/?utm_term=.a010f734fb11

    With due respect to the Carter Family, I write this:
    Doubtless, after election defeat by Reagan, President Carter felt the "pressure of evil" when he learned that George H.W. Bush met secretly with Islamic Republic of Iran officials and baited them to delay release of the American hostages until after the election.

    Thanks, Joe Hide! Never forget, Evil can both hide & run for PreZident.
  165. @German_reader

    Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.
     
    What's the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.
     
    What's there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn't deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint...but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism
     
    I really don't get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say "biologist" or "racist") can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as "a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism"...I just don't see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let's hope Martyanov will comment on this piece :-)

    Let’s hope Martyanov will comment on this piece

    Kholmogorov is a sort of Dugin 2.0 with no systemic education, he dropped out of MSU in a year then went to study to some religious Madras which he also didn’t finish, IIRC. So, to comment on some tertiary, not even secondary, pretentious pseudo-“intellectual”? Again, Gabriel Charmez comes to mind. In general, Kholmogorov is a classic representative of a lost generation of amateurs of 1990s which tried to put on themselves a mantle of “thinkers” in 1990s-early 2000s only to be exposed, most of them, as frauds. But, in general, shady opportunist with developed vernacular to BS uncritical and even less educated than him followers. So, what’s to comment on a demagogue?

    • Replies: @Mike P

    So, what’s to comment on a demagogue?
     
    Don't hold back, tell us what you really think ;)

    I suspect though that German reader was more interested on your take on Solzhenitsyn himself than on the author of this piece. It seems that Solzhenitsyn polarises opinion among those who live or lived in the former Soviet Union. I, too, would value your opinion, if you have the time.
  166. Anonymous [AKA "BiblioManic"] says:

    FWIW, I found the full text in downloadable pdf, 2 volumes/27 chapters, of Solzhenitsyn’s “200 Years” on a site called The Incorrect Librarian. Very interesting reading:

    https://inclibuql666c5c4.onion.link/?document=view&id=1214

  167. @Thorfinnsson


    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century:
     
    Cossacks are also associated with Russia however, and Novgorod had a republic for 300 years.

    Constitutions were also a big fad in the 18th century. Could've happened to Russia as well if they'd suffered from a pozzed Tsar or serious internal revolt. It's not like Prussia wanted to grant a constitution for instance, yet it did anyway.


    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
     
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_alcohol_consumption_per_capita

    If these data are correct there is not much difference. This is also from 2010 and Russian consumption has dropped since then owing to anti-alcohol measures.

    Poland's consumption is also quite high as well.


    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
     
    Russian elites have been trying to Westernize on and off for three centuries.

    Recent Russian antagonism towards the West is based on our own hostile behavior.


    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)
     
    What do the Hungarians do? Perhaps the Magyar Miracle can chip in.

    There is an interesting difference in between Russia and the UK on tea. Russians I believe take their tea with lemon juice, whereas the UK takes their tea with cream.

    Personally I drink coffee and tea as they're both great. :)

    I have to again compliment you on your polite demeanor in answering me, which is likely not easy given the subject matter and my own belligerence. Certainly an improvement over Mr. Hack and his love of punitive psychiatry.

    Sorry, but your obsessive/compulsive form of Ukrainaphobia (and make no doubt about it, you are definitely a Ukrainaphobe), requires drastic measures. It’s too bad that you haven’t taken the cure yet, as I see that you’re still spouting off your nonsensical bigotry. 🙁

    As part of my ongoing campaign against the existence of the Ukraine I have consulted Wikipedia.

    Sure, it will be painful in the beginning, but think of the remedial benefits that await you: no more sleepless nights or nights fraught with dreams of Bandera or Shevchenko torturing your sorry ass with a pitchfork crowned with a sharp, nasty tryzub. Set yourself free, man! 🙂

  168. @Dmitry
    You can keep in a mental image of a healthy society - sure, this can be enjoyable game to think about, which people have done throughout history (literary genre of utopia).*

    But then to use the mental image, to put present commentators point of view, including yourself and some others, as a some product of the sick society, because it is very distant from the mental image.

    As someone talks about religion, Indians, etc, I expected some reply that atman is not touched by such superficial things as society.

    I don't have such extreme views myself - but for something I prefer, the viewpoint and even practice of Epicurus* can be followed today, no more or less than in his own time, or just as many thousand years into the future.

    -

    * https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utopia

    * https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Epicurus


    Clearly, envisioning a healthy and sane society is highly relevant both for our individual wellbeing in the here and now and for helping to fashion, possibly, a better future, and to help others now achieve well being.

    You, Dmitry, are a subtle underminer :) And not just from this comment…
     
    I will take it as a compliment.

    It reminds of my mother, who has dreamed about the new kitchen. And we had installed the new kitchen, and a few days later already talking about a bathroom. Eventually installed a
    new bathroom, and then the next day already about the need to have new paint on the walls. And "when everything is right I'll be happy, we can invite people over", but as some distant things always pushed into the future.

    It also reminds, when I read people on the urban forums - 'the city still looks terrible, but just wait another a few more years, after the new pavements, etc, and we can enjoy it', etc, etc. Probably just the kind of attitude that will attract the devil to kill you before it happens, as not make advantage of the present is one of the greatest sins.

    Of course, in politics this kind of devaluing of present for future that never comes, is too common.

    Actually there is a Japanese fairy story this kind of attitude reminds me of, and which has sent a chill down my spine when I read it because it is a danger for my own personality type - of the boy who loses his youth in a kind of dream under the sea. But I won't say more about this story.

    As someone talks about religion, Indians, etc, I expected some reply that atman is not touched by such superficial things as society.

    I just wanted to make a comment about this – the very idea of Atman is that we are all part of the larger whole. We cannot help but be affected by the society and environment we live, and even the entire consciousness of the human race. We are not individual units.

    Of course, one must make some effort to free oneself from the negative influences of one’s environment, and then contribute to reshaping it by personal example – not aggressive advocacy – and the very fact that one has achieved a higher viewpoint will send ripples throughout the the web of human consciousness. And what is this higher viewpoint? Simply that we are not individual units, but one with the universe. That you are me, and I am you. We interpenetrate.

    So the idea that Indian religion or philosophy encourages a lack of concern for society and other people is an absolute falsehood – it’s essence is the recognition that we are not individual units but part of a larger web.

    You got it exactly backwards. As a subverter of the principle of unity and an advocate for atomistic materialism, I expect no less from you 🙂

    I am sure Epicurianism also does not advocate atomistic individualism with no social concern – no healthy philosophy can. I seem to remember something about Epicurianism praising friendship as the highest ideal and something about small groups of friends joining together in a garden…

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    Their concept of your soul - atman - is not touched by anything that happens in life (let alone the particular arrangement of society in 'so and so' years), or even in future or past life, although it can believe itself to be, which is how you enter into samsara, become conditioned by karma etc.

    I am sure Epicurianism also does not advocate atomistic individualism with no social concern – no healthy philosophy can. I seem to remember something about Epicurianism praising friendship as the highest ideal and something about small groups of friends joining together in a garden…

     

    Epicurus and his followers were out of favour, and controversial in society of their time. His point is that happiness can be attained, with some few simple things - (you don't need to wait around dreaming for utopia, or devaluing present people).
  169. @melanf

    Not the Ukrainian ones.
     
    Ukrainian Cossacks were quite Pro-Russian. But another thing is that these Cossacks were thugs and murderers, and their short-lived "state" was the equivalent of a modern Libya (various gang of Cossacks waged a constant war with each other).

    their short-lived “state” was the equivalent of a modern Libya (various gang of Cossacks waged a constant war with each other

    Modern Libya isn’t known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.

    Cossack State was.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    In addition to (for the most part) being loyal to Russia.
    , @for-the-record
    Modern Libya isn’t known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.

    Actually, prior to being liberated in 2011 Libya had the highest literacy rate in Africa apart from South Africa, and the highest "Human Development Index" in Africa.
    , @melanf

    Modern Libya isn’t known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.
     
    Do not worry, in the future, Libyan propagandists will also create a fairy tale that Libya in the early 21st century was the beacon of literacy, schools, and architecture
  170. A rather too transparent attempt to hijack Solzhenitsyn and use him as a justification for Putin’s revisionist policies. By the time Putin had adopted those policies, Solzhenitsyn, of course, was (conveniently!) dead, so he can’t contradict the author. We’ll never know what Solzhenitsyn would have thought about post-2012 Putin, so I don’t see the relevance of what he might have thought up to the time he died in 2008. Putin’s supporters are running out of ideas!

    • Replies: @Aedib
    Simply untrue

    https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/02/vladimir-putin-guru-solzhenitsyn-115088
  171. @AaronB
    It doesn't mean every single member of this generation - there are many exceptions. And I don't say it with glee, but with regret. But at a certain point one must realize that there can be such a thing as a "lost generation". Why not make yourself the exception, rather than taking it personally?

    Perhaps one may say this generation paved the way, but was not able to go all the way - a transitional generation. Moses after all had an honored position. But the limitations in viewpoint of this generation is no longer possible to ignore. Tomorrow, Sailer will come out with another post urging us to accept Jews as our natural masters, and fatalistically telling us we are limited by IQ and effort cannot help us - all with unfailingly polite irony and affability. For all his great virtues, this kind of thing (and much more) can no longer be seen as anything other than a severe obstacle in the way of cultural revitalization.

    Tomorrow, Sailer will come out with another post urging us to accept Jews as our natural masters, and fatalistically telling us we are limited by IQ and effort cannot help us – all with unfailingly polite irony and affability. For all his great virtues, this kind of thing (and much more) can no longer be seen as anything other than a severe obstacle in the way of cultural revitalization.

    Probably you have noticed that not so long ago they have rolled out another artillery piece and the barrage only intensified. I mean Jordan Peterson. Young and youngish men on the right are swallowing it like pelican swallows fish. Or have you ever fed ducks by throwing them bread into a pond?

    • Replies: @AaronB
    That's very true. Vox Day (who I do not like) eviscerated Peterson today on his blog, and wrote a short masterpiece on the myth of Jewish IQ. Everyone interested in the issue should read it.

    It's subtle subversion. Sailer for instance will write a post on how the nyt should look into the question of Jewish privilege...then the next how the nyt has the smartest writers and Jewish wealth has the same causes as white wealth. It's subtle subversion - you establish credibility and position yourself as on my side, then subtly introduce messages that undermine me. That's how it's done.

    It's crazy that so few can see what's going on. Peterson is so obviously dishonest about this issue. It really does seem that this generation of older white men who grew up during the age of unrivalled Jewish supremacy need to gently die off...
  172. Perhaps Solzhenitsyn was, after all, some kind of prophet. He looks so sad. Look at these eyes, general facial expression…

    It’s as if he’s trying to say: Look guys, I’ve said many things, but I don’t deserve all this sheet in the comments section.

  173. @Michael Kenny
    A rather too transparent attempt to hijack Solzhenitsyn and use him as a justification for Putin’s revisionist policies. By the time Putin had adopted those policies, Solzhenitsyn, of course, was (conveniently!) dead, so he can’t contradict the author. We’ll never know what Solzhenitsyn would have thought about post-2012 Putin, so I don’t see the relevance of what he might have thought up to the time he died in 2008. Putin’s supporters are running out of ideas!
    • Replies: @Aedib
    http://archive.boston.com/news/world/articles/2008/08/05/toward_end_solzhenitsyn_embraced_putins_russia/
  174. @Aedib
    Simply untrue

    https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/02/vladimir-putin-guru-solzhenitsyn-115088
  175. @utu

    Tomorrow, Sailer will come out with another post urging us to accept Jews as our natural masters, and fatalistically telling us we are limited by IQ and effort cannot help us – all with unfailingly polite irony and affability. For all his great virtues, this kind of thing (and much more) can no longer be seen as anything other than a severe obstacle in the way of cultural revitalization.
     
    Probably you have noticed that not so long ago they have rolled out another artillery piece and the barrage only intensified. I mean Jordan Peterson. Young and youngish men on the right are swallowing it like pelican swallows fish. Or have you ever fed ducks by throwing them bread into a pond?

    That’s very true. Vox Day (who I do not like) eviscerated Peterson today on his blog, and wrote a short masterpiece on the myth of Jewish IQ. Everyone interested in the issue should read it.

    It’s subtle subversion. Sailer for instance will write a post on how the nyt should look into the question of Jewish privilege…then the next how the nyt has the smartest writers and Jewish wealth has the same causes as white wealth. It’s subtle subversion – you establish credibility and position yourself as on my side, then subtly introduce messages that undermine me. That’s how it’s done.

    It’s crazy that so few can see what’s going on. Peterson is so obviously dishonest about this issue. It really does seem that this generation of older white men who grew up during the age of unrivalled Jewish supremacy need to gently die off…

  176. @AP

    their short-lived “state” was the equivalent of a modern Libya (various gang of Cossacks waged a constant war with each other
     
    Modern Libya isn't known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.

    Cossack State was.

    In addition to (for the most part) being loyal to Russia.

  177. @Andrei Martyanov

    Let’s hope Martyanov will comment on this piece
     
    Kholmogorov is a sort of Dugin 2.0 with no systemic education, he dropped out of MSU in a year then went to study to some religious Madras which he also didn't finish, IIRC. So, to comment on some tertiary, not even secondary, pretentious pseudo-"intellectual"? Again, Gabriel Charmez comes to mind. In general, Kholmogorov is a classic representative of a lost generation of amateurs of 1990s which tried to put on themselves a mantle of "thinkers" in 1990s-early 2000s only to be exposed, most of them, as frauds. But, in general, shady opportunist with developed vernacular to BS uncritical and even less educated than him followers. So, what's to comment on a demagogue?

    So, what’s to comment on a demagogue?

    Don’t hold back, tell us what you really think 😉

    I suspect though that German reader was more interested on your take on Solzhenitsyn himself than on the author of this piece. It seems that Solzhenitsyn polarises opinion among those who live or lived in the former Soviet Union. I, too, would value your opinion, if you have the time.

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    I suspect though that German reader was more interested on your take on Solzhenitsyn
     
    I stated my position on him not for once on UNZ forums: a mediocre at best writer propelled to his popularity largely out of West's ideological imperatives of the Cold War, a poseur and utterly amateur, or deliberately falsifying, "historian".
  178. @AP

    • The Ukrainian dialect apparently has a bunch of Polish words
    • Galicia is Catholic
    • Some Ukrainians refuse to admit they’re Little Russians
    • The Ukraine is a lot poorer than Russia
    • The only notable cultural achievement of Ukrainians is apparently Carol of the Bells
     
    * politically, Ukrainians prefer plurality (which can become chaotic) whereas Russian instinct is to gravitate towards an autocratic ruler
    *Related: Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars; Ukraine had a democratic constitution in the early 18th century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Pylyp_Orlyk
    *Ukrainian folk music quite different and more complex, using different instruments
    * Carol of the Bells is the only cultural achievement any Westerner such as you has heard of, there is a rich musical tradition
    *Ukrainians much more traditionally moralistic (lower divorce, abortion rates)
    *Ukrainians much more church-going
    *Ukrainians drink a lot but less than do Russians (like Poles); beer is a higher % of consumption
    *Ukrainains historically much more open to the West; Russians antagonistic towards the West (centuries-long pattern)
    *Russians prefer tea over coffee like UK, Ukrainians to a lesser extent (they are like Hungarians)

    Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars

    I can see that you haven’t studied history in the USSR.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    He's prone to emphasizing selective cherry picks that distort actuality, while fitting his preferred takes.

    Pugachev's uprising wasn't for an early day Ukrainian nationalism. If anything, he sought to replace the existing Russian government with himself.

    That might've been very true of Mazepa as well. In any event Pugachev and Mazepa eventually failed, largely on account of most Cossacks opposing opposing them, as has been historically accepted.

  179. @German_reader

    Likewise, it was Solzhenitsyn who singled out the figure of Alexander Parvus in the history of the Revolution, and nowadays, no analysis of the Russian Catastrophe avoids discussing this international man of mystery and his contribution to Russia’s destruction.
     
    What's the point in singling out Alexander Parvus, how does it enhance understanding of the Russian revolution?

    The only figure that our present day views with more appreciation than Solzhenitsyn is probably Emperor Nicholas II.
     
    What's there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II? Granted, the man and his family didn't deserve to be murdered by the Bolsheviks, and those of religious inclinations might venerate him as a saint...but how can his rule be a positive example in a political sense?

    However, this transformation gave them no antidote for militant atheism
     
    I really don't get how a militant technophile like AK whose entire outlook on life comes across as strongly materialist (some would say "biologist" or "racist") can feel enthusiastic about all this religious talk of Russia as "a Vatican or Mecca of conservatism"...I just don't see how this can be reconciled in a coherent system of thought.
    Let's hope Martyanov will comment on this piece :-)

    Parvus marks how the Western powers and Turkey were all using revolutionaries to try to destroy Russia, long before WW1. Parvus worked for the Germans government, as well as for German Communists. He was the most important non-Turkish player among the Young Turks. He almost certainly also worked for British secret service. Parvus is a perfect example of the International Jew who hates seemingly every Gentile nation that arose out of Christendom. That Russia came to be the most despised, most by a huge degree, before the late 19th century is telling. International Jews were not involved in major activities to ruin the British Empire or the USA, nor the Ottoman Empire.

    What happened to Russia is what all Leftists want to happen to all white Gentile lands and their peoples. Knowing Parvus is very important to grasping how it came to be, and who were the ones promoting it.

    Nicholas II is a lesson, the best lesson, that the Left, like its father Satan, lies all the time and delights most in lying people into hating the people and institutions and ideas that can save them from Leftist horrors. Nicholas II is a type of martyr.

    • Replies: @Anon
    @ hating the people and institutions and ideas that can save them from Leftist horrors. Nicholas II is a type of martyr.

    Well said.
  180. @Joe Hide
    WOW! Anatoly does it again. What a remarkably good writer.
    I typically do numerous short exercises of varying difficulty and intensity throughout the day. These include logic, pattern recognition, mathematical, etc. for the mind... exercises. Reading Anatoly's above article certainly gave my mind a good workout this morning.
    And yes.....GREAT description of Solzhenitsyn's contribution as a force of positive change for Russia and the World.
    Keep writing Karlin.

    AK: Well, erm, thanks, but I'm not the author or even the translator of this article; just the editor.

    Seeker Joe Hide surfaced & wisely wrote:
    “And yes…..GREAT description of Solzhenitsyn’s contribution as a force of positive change for Russia and the World.
    Keep writing Karlin.”

    Hi Joe Hide,

    Not to bore you into historical dystopia, but in June 1978, I was employed by Roadway Express, Inc. (REX) as a Teamster dockworker.

    Inside the break bulk-dock “break room,” I read a NYT’s article on Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s Harvard commencement address. At war with REX’s authoritarian management policies, I naturally got into Solzhenitsyn’s U.S.A. profile, including his assertion that he “can feel the pressure of evil across our land.”

    To be objective, Joe Hide, I will now introduce classy Southern (ZUS) First Lady Rosalyn Carter’s opinion on Solzhenitsyn’s scathing address, which she delivered to The National Press Club, mid-June ’78.

    Rosalyn Carter emphasized her rejection of the exiled Russian writer’s scathing criticism of Western society’s moral cowardice, selfishness, and decadence. Jimmy’s lovely & protected wife added, “I do not not sense that (evil) pressure across our land at all.”

    Below is a June 21, 1978 Washington Post article which covered Rosalyn’s spirited-speech to the National Press Club.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/politics/1978/06/21/a-rebuttal-to-solzhenitsyn/3b2786d3-893f-4ebe-8595-3324f52000a5/?utm_term=.a010f734fb11

    With due respect to the Carter Family, I write this:
    Doubtless, after election defeat by Reagan, President Carter felt the “pressure of evil” when he learned that George H.W. Bush met secretly with Islamic Republic of Iran officials and baited them to delay release of the American hostages until after the election.

    Thanks, Joe Hide! Never forget, Evil can both hide & run for PreZident.

  181. “…Jordan B. Peterson, one of the Alt Right’s intellectual darlings….”

    Jordan Peterson (JP) is MOST CERTAINLY NOT right wing. However, that stated, I will most certainly agree that JP is ‘alt right’ for that is merely a facade for liberalism (classical British that is, as JP defines himself).
    JP, Alex Jones, Paul Joseph Watson, Breitbart, Gavin McInnes, Lauren Southern, Faith Goldy, Stefan Molyneux, Paul Ruben, Stephen Crowder, Tommy Robinson, Douglas Murray, Pamela Gellar, Richard Spencer, Milo Yiannopolous, Sargon of Akkad…..and the rest of the ‘alt right’ ARE NOT right wing, but liberals. And in all reality a liberal is someone who is MORE left wing leaning than right.
    Every one of the aforementioned is virulently anti nationalist, pro immigration, pro LGBTQ, pro multiracialism, pro diversity…the list goes on and on. Where they disagree with the left is on freedom of speech, transgender issues, feminism and Islam. Then again, all are Zionist lickspittles, rallying the west to go to war against Islam to protect Israel, with the exception of Molyneux.

  182. anonymous[204] • Disclaimer says:

    DOWN WITH RUSSIA, DOWN WITH PUTIN, A ZIONIST SERVANT AND A RACIST.
    RUSSIA HAS ALWAYS PUT A KNIFE ON MUSLIM’S BAK FOR THE INTEREST OF ZIONIST JEWS, AND CRIMINAL WEST. Russia always sold Muslims to be acceped by the criminal west. Russia is a petty colony and no one should trust it.

    [MORE]

    [No, Russian-“Israeli” ties aren’t in a state of “crisis” after the latter bombed Syria earlier this month, but are actually enjoying an unprecedented flourishment that won’t be offset by whatever happens in the Arab Republic, and Moscow might even tie Tel Aviv into the same multilateral free trade area that has recently expanded to include Iran.

    “Israel’s” bombing of Syria earlier this month predictably prompted many in the Alt-Media to declare that this time Russia will surely ‘teach its ally a lesson’ by openly turning into the ‘anti-Zionist crusader state’ that their dogma has indoctrinated them into imagining that it’s been this entire time. They were, as is becoming the norm, totally wrong, and three specific events prove that ties between the two sides aren’t in a state of “crisis” but are rather flourishing, with the latest milestone in their relationship being the resumption of free trade talks.

    First things first, it took Russia over 24 hours to summon the “Israeli” “Ambassador” after the early-April bombing of Syria, which is extremely unusual behavior if Moscow was indeed as caught off guard as it publicly proclaims to have been at the time. Ordinarily, the offended country would immediately request an official meeting with the insulting party’s top representative, especially when the incident in question had to do with an unannounced military strike that could have supposedly injured the host country’s servicemen, but this curiously wasn’t the case.]

    https://www.globalresearch.ca/the-resumption-of-russian-israeli-free-trade-talks-proves-ties-are-fantastic-implications-for-syria/5637753

    Why hasn’t Russia delivered S-300 to Syria yet? If Putin more concern about the criminal zionist jews, then fuck off from Syria now. Putin always uses Iran, Syria, Libya cards to get few BONES FROM THE ZIONIST CRIMINALS AND TRIER SUPPORTERS, THE CRIMINAL WEST.
    Russia is nothing but a petty colony.

    [The Alt-Media Community celebrated Russia’s announcement that it was considering selling the S-300 anti-air defense system to Syria following the US-led strikes earlier this month, but then some confusion kicked in after Foreign Minister Lavrov later revealed that no decision had yet been made in this respect. It can’t be known for sure, but the threats made by Russia’s “Israeli” ally to “retaliate” against Syria if Damascus uses these armaments to protect its skies could have been a factor behind why Moscow might be reconsidering this no-cost deal. Another source of confusion is over Russia’s intentions in countenancing this move in the first place, since many people don’t understand what Lavrov had in mind when he spoke about how his country no longer has a “moral obligation” to refrain from selling these wares to Syria.]

    Racist Russia cannot be trusted for a second. Putin is in the zionist bankers’s poeckets like the zionist pimp in the black house.

    https://www.globalresearch.ca/what-moral-obligation-did-russia-have-to-not-sell-s-300s-to-syria-moscow-tel-avivs-unspoken-relationship/5637693

  183. My Russian friend told me, to understand Russia, read:

    Leto Gospodne, Ivan Smelyov.

    Tough one, though, very colloquial Russian.

    • Replies: @melanf

    Leto Gospodne, Ivan Smelyov.
     
    Pseudo-historical novel almost forgotten in Russia.
  184. AP says:
    @melanf

    Not the Ukrainian ones.
     
    Ukrainian Cossacks were quite Pro-Russian. But another thing is that these Cossacks were thugs and murderers, and their short-lived "state" was the equivalent of a modern Libya (various gang of Cossacks waged a constant war with each other).

    Ukrainian Cossacks were quite Pro-Russian

    Like Cossacks under Sahaidachny, who helped the Poles take Moscow and massacred as many Russians as they could get their hands on and sold many more to the Turks? How about his assistent who specialized in impaling Moscow boyars?

    Khmelytsky clashing with Russia over Belarus and them plotting with Swedes against Rusia before his death?

    His successor Vyhovsky allying with Poles?

    Doroshenko allying with Turks against Russia?

    Mazepa allying with Swedes?

    How about this guy. Obscure, but an interesting story:

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

    Count Vasily Vasilievich Kapnist (Russian: Василий Васильевич Капнист), (23 February 1758 – 9 November 1823), was a Russian poet and playwright of Greek origin.

    Kapnist’s grandfather was a Venetian merchant of Greek origin from the island of Zakynthos. He was a descendant of the Venetian noble family of Capnissi (whose name derives from the Zakynthos surname Καπνίσης[1]), he spent all his life in the manor of Obukhovka near Poltava. Vasily’s maternal ancestors were Cossack starshyna.

    Kapnist revealed himself as a savage satirist in his most famous work, a satirical verse drama based on the poet’s litigation against a neighbour and aptly entitled Chicane (1798). His victims are the judges and officers of law, whom he paints as an unredeemed lot of thieves and extortioners. The play is in rather harsh Alexandrines but produces a powerful effect by the force of its passionate sarcasm. The poem is based on the Russian custom of state-appointed judges, whereas in Ukraine the judges were previously elected. The poem caused the Czar’s extreme displeasure, and he ordered Kapnist “to be erased from memory”, causing total ban on any of his literary efforts.

    Although Kapnist dedicated his play to Emperor Paul, it was denounced by the censorship as scurrilous and libertarian. Banned after only four performances, it was not revived in St. Petersburg until 1805. According to D.S. Mirsky, “the two greatest Russian comedies of the 19th century, Griboyedov’s Woe from Wit and Gogol’s Inspector General, owe not a little to the crude and primitive comedy of Kapnist”.[2]

    Kapnist was a proponent of the restoration of Ukrainian autonomy in the Russian Empire after Hetmanate was abolished by Catherine II. In 1788, he wrote a petition proposing the empress to restore the cossack host in Ukrainian lands and use its soldiers in the ongoing war against Turkey. However, when the military situation improved, the imperial government refused to implement this plan.[3] In April 1791, either Kapnist or one of his brothers had a secret meeting with Prussian chancellor Ewald Friedrich Graf von Hertzberg, trying to persuade the Prussian government to declare war on Russia in case an uprising starts against Russian rule in Ukraine. However, this mission was unsuccessful as king Friedrich Wilhelm II refused to give his own consent for such an action.

    :::::::::::::

    Ukrainians forced under Russian rule do what they do: typically involved in some anti-Russian plots with Russia’s Western rivals.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    You keep repeating BS that has been already debunked. Mazepa and Vyhovksy lost for the generally accepted reason that they didn't have majority support among the folks they purported to represent.

    Khmelnytsky opposed Polish imperialism, which included a stated opposition to the further imposition of the Greek Catholic denomination favored by Poland. This led him to eventually allying with Russia. His reported latter day differences with Russia didn't lead to the territory in his domain opposing Russia en masse.

    Once again, Russia had democratic trappings, more so than you suggest in an inaccurate manner.

    I'll add more on that in a bit.
  185. @German_reader
    France and Britain weren't without some responsibility either (none of the great powers was imo, though Russia and Germany were probably the main culprits), but it seems to me there was less enthusiasm for war among elites and educated classes there. The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes...no sane Englishman would have cared about a Balkans war between Austria-Hungary and Serbia. Whereas there were plenty of panslavist nutters in Russia who thought their national honour mandated going to war for Serbia (which was just an unimportant and rather nasty bandit state).

    “The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes”
    The British were highly motivated to go to war against Germany because of the latter’ s commercial success that was clearly putting British products within and outside the British Empire at the defensive. Tsar Nicholas was a person of limited capacities for statesmanship who had every reason to stay out of the war as the Stolypin reforms were getting Russia on the right path of economic revival despite the latter’ s assassination by the Jewish son of one of the wealthiest traders in Saint Petersburg. France was highly motivated by a desire for revenge for the loss of Alsace Lorraine. The Germans were too confident of the Schlieffen plan but had no choice but to resist the pincer movement around them by Russia and France. All were the victims of the international bankers who created the Federal Reserve in 1913 to be able to finance the coming war through fiat money.

    • Replies: @Anon
    British commoners enlisted en masse because of Germany's commercial success?
  186. @Bardon Kaldian
    Dostoevsky is one of the few supreme writers, along with Homer, Aeschylus, Dante, Shakespeare & some others. Not more than 7-10 people belong to that category (great writers like Flaubert, Conrad, Faulkner,.. are more numerous).

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.

    Dostoevsky is one of the few supreme writers, along with Homer, Aeschylus, Dante, Shakespeare & some others. Not more than 7-10 people belong to that category (great writers like Flaubert, Conrad, Faulkner,.. are more numerous).

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.

    One of my favorite writers, Boston College philosophy professor Peter Kreeft, a conservative Catholic (convert from Dutch Reformed) has always said that the the greatest novel ever written is without question The Brothers Karamazov. He has maintained this for decades.

    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian
    Kreeft- highly readable & enjoyable. I've read his book on Ecclesiastes & was impressed.
  187. @Joe Levantine
    "The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes"
    The British were highly motivated to go to war against Germany because of the latter' s commercial success that was clearly putting British products within and outside the British Empire at the defensive. Tsar Nicholas was a person of limited capacities for statesmanship who had every reason to stay out of the war as the Stolypin reforms were getting Russia on the right path of economic revival despite the latter' s assassination by the Jewish son of one of the wealthiest traders in Saint Petersburg. France was highly motivated by a desire for revenge for the loss of Alsace Lorraine. The Germans were too confident of the Schlieffen plan but had no choice but to resist the pincer movement around them by Russia and France. All were the victims of the international bankers who created the Federal Reserve in 1913 to be able to finance the coming war through fiat money.

    British commoners enlisted en masse because of Germany’s commercial success?

    • Replies: @Joe Levantine
    The masses are always manipulated by the propaganda of the state. The demonisation of the enemy is an art that was perfected since WWI. The treaty of Westphalia which had made wars a business that is strictly conducted between European armies was trashed when the British confiscated the wealth of the Germans who had deposited their money in British banks. The stories about German soldiers killing and maiming babies are very well documented. Unfortunately, the people were and still are the sheeple.
  188. Solzhenitsyn was a liar. He lied about his desire to get to the front during the war: according to everyone who lived in the USSR back then, there was nothing easier. He lied about other things in his biography, as he was in the VIP camps, unlike most prisoners. He lied about other things: “gulag archipelago” is full of lies. If you want to learn the truth, read Shalamov (“Kolyma stories” and other books).

  189. @AP

    their short-lived “state” was the equivalent of a modern Libya (various gang of Cossacks waged a constant war with each other
     
    Modern Libya isn't known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.

    Cossack State was.

    Modern Libya isn’t known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.

    Actually, prior to being liberated in 2011 Libya had the highest literacy rate in Africa apart from South Africa, and the highest “Human Development Index” in Africa.

    • Replies: @AP
    Correct. The guy I was responding to was making an analogy to post-intervention Libya.
  190. @nickels
    My Russian friend told me, to understand Russia, read:

    Leto Gospodne, Ivan Smelyov.

    Tough one, though, very colloquial Russian.

    Leto Gospodne, Ivan Smelyov.

    Pseudo-historical novel almost forgotten in Russia.

    • Replies: @nickels
    Huh?
    It is a book about a child's faith and the seasons of the Orthodox church as experienced in pre-revolutionary Russia.
    Who cares if Russians have forgotten it.
  191. @for-the-record
    Modern Libya isn’t known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.

    Actually, prior to being liberated in 2011 Libya had the highest literacy rate in Africa apart from South Africa, and the highest "Human Development Index" in Africa.

    Correct. The guy I was responding to was making an analogy to post-intervention Libya.

  192. @AP

    their short-lived “state” was the equivalent of a modern Libya (various gang of Cossacks waged a constant war with each other
     
    Modern Libya isn't known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.

    Cossack State was.

    Modern Libya isn’t known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.

    Do not worry, in the future, Libyan propagandists will also create a fairy tale that Libya in the early 21st century was the beacon of literacy, schools, and architecture

    • Replies: @AP
    Hard to argue against physical objects, which are not fairy tales:

    https://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/Николаевский_собор_(Нежин)
  193. @German_reader

    then it seems to me you have to accept that religion is either adaptive or at least was adaptive in the past
     
    That's certainly true, but could you consciously make yourself believe in something just because it's evolutionarily adaptive?
    I often find nationalists who enlist religion in the service of their national cause a bit cynical tbh, they seem unconcerned about the question of religious truth. Unless you really believe that Christ died for our sins and rose from the dead, what's the point in going on about the centrality of Christianity for your national identity? And in the modern world such belief is very hard for many people (with good reason imo).
    There are also inherent tensions between universalist religions and nationalism.
    Many identitarians/nationalists seem to believe they can just ignore those issues, but imo that's an illusion.

    they seem unconcerned about the question of religious truth

    There is no “truth” in a religious truth.

    A nationalist could be supportive of religion if he believed that the religion was “good” for his people.

    • Replies: @Talha
    I think his point is; LARPing religion seems dorky since it is predicated on belief. It seems funny to have a nation supporting Christianity as an institution and nobody goes to church.

    It's a bit silly - at least from my perspective. But, if it works...

    Peace.
  194. @melanf
    Absolutely shameful article. Glorifying a useful idiot of the CIA, whose literary works consist of boring lies is an amazing degradation.

    To be quite fair, Solzhenitsyn had some literary talent, which might have made him a great writer in Latvian or Estonian literature. However, in Russian literature he is about third-rate. As Dostoyevsky rightly said in “Demons”, it is hard to be a second-rate talent. As for lies, most of what he wrote was either lies, or the truth twisted beyond recognition. I am not sure about CIA, but he did publicly ask the US to nuke the USSR, which is even worse than being a CIA asset.

    • Agree: Andrei Martyanov
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    The speech in question where Solzhenitsyn "publicly asks the US to nuke the USSR" (according to sovok propagandists).

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-bOTB6X71U

    Transliteration:

    At one time there was no comparison between the strength of the USSR and yours. Then it became equal… (The Soviet advantage grew). Then (it became) three to one. Finally, it will be five to one… With such a nuclear superiority it will be possible to block the use of your weapons, and on some unlucky morning they will declare: 'Attention. We're marching our troops to Europe, and if you make a move, we will annihilate you.' And this ratio… of five to one will have its effect: you will not make a move.
     
  195. @AaronB
    As for the article itself - simply brilliant.

    I'm impressed, Anatoly, at the growth in your views. Was not expecting it.

    You are still young enough, apparently, to grow, and participate in the coming turn away from the enlightenment death cult and towards health and sanity (and yes, I know you're still a staunch supporter of technology and all that).

    The older generation of whites, the Steve Sailers, John Derbyshires, German Readers, Bardon Karolians, and honestly perhaps the majority of undoubtedly highly intelligent white commenters on this blog, while certainly not bad people, are nevertheless too tainted by the death cult and must quietly die off - God willing peacefully and of natural causes - before any kind of revitalization can occur.

    Let us do what we can, and wait patiently.

    AaronB,

    In America the young are always ready to give to those who are older than themselves the full benefits of their inexperience.

    Oscar Wilde

    If you’re not American, I dub you an honorable one, for lack of better words. You remind me of myself when I was younger. I wish you the best, insufferable one.

  196. @iffen
    they seem unconcerned about the question of religious truth

    There is no "truth" in a religious truth.

    A nationalist could be supportive of religion if he believed that the religion was "good" for his people.

    I think his point is; LARPing religion seems dorky since it is predicated on belief. It seems funny to have a nation supporting Christianity as an institution and nobody goes to church.

    It’s a bit silly – at least from my perspective. But, if it works…

    Peace.

    • Replies: @iffen
    It seems funny to have a nation supporting Christianity as an institution and nobody goes to church.

    Problem. Question. Solution.

    LARPing religion seems dorky

    Not really. You might remember from my comments that I have said that I have considered “faking it” because of the estrangement.
  197. Anonymous [AKA "IvanWilhelm"] says:

    One could interpret Christianity as a parable for human nature and reconcile it with Nationalism. That there exist forbidden knowledge you are better off not knowing (Garden of Eden), that humans are prone to scapegoating (Jesus died for our sins), and that we consume/bring down the best of us or self-cannibalize (communion).

    It’s a way to teach important lessons to people without them having to understand those lessons explicitly.

    On the other hand I think pride is not a vice but rather a virtue, modern Christians seem to think Pride being a vice is THE most important thing in Christianity. The western Christian church seems to have trouble maintaining itself.

    • Replies: @German_reader

    One could interpret Christianity as a parable for human nature and reconcile it with Nationalism.
     
    Christianity isn't just a parable (nor just a set of ethics), it makes some very specific claims about history and the ultimate destiny of mankind. As St Paul himself wrote: And if Christ has not been raised, then all our preaching is useless, and your faith is useless. If you reduce it just to some allegory and a few moral precepts, the entire edifice crumbles.
    What you're advocating for, is basically a pagan approach to religion imo: There is a transcendent god, but we know nothing of it, there is no divine revelation, and the myths aren't events that really happened at some point in the past, but are symbols for recurrent phenomena of human life and the natural order. I have quite a bit of sympathy for such an approach, but it's something completely different from the claims to absolute truth which revealed religions make.
    , @nickels
    No need to be allegorical.
    The story of the Tower of Babel explicitly teaches that a united humanity is a source of unmitigated evil, and that the cure is nations.
  198. @melanf

    Modern Libya isn’t known for its literacy, schools, and architecture.
     
    Do not worry, in the future, Libyan propagandists will also create a fairy tale that Libya in the early 21st century was the beacon of literacy, schools, and architecture

    Hard to argue against physical objects, which are not fairy tales:

    https://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/Николаевский_собор_(Нежин)

    • Replies: @melanf

    Hard to argue against physical objects, which are not fairy tales:
     
    https://img-fotki.yandex.ru/get/6406/8644080.2c/0_84868_74656b1a_XL.jpg

    Well, impressive achievement - the Church with a height of 50 meters (17th century)!!!
    The architecture is quite on the level of Timbuktu. Maybe even a little better. Undoubtedly Cossack "state" is the peak of world civilization.

  199. @Dmitry
    And the opinion of a talented artist, can often be surprisingly trite and just a collection of cliches, the moment you ask him something not related to his specialty (which in Solzhenitsyn's case was making characters and stories). On the other hand, these views might be held with a high degree of certainty, more characteristic of a real expert - but this certainty comes from the arrogance of the artist's personality, rather scholarly expertise.

    It reminds a little bit of nowadays, when people expect a good actor, to have more profound political views than a less artistically talented person. Really the two skills are quite unrelated, and in Solzhenitsyn's case, this is almost the case - as when a novelist/fabulist tries to write history books - that the strength of one contributes to the weakness of the other.

    And the opinion of a talented artist

    I think that you are missing the point or the value. Artists, almost by definition, have a different perspective. You need to look at their description or work to gain a different, could I say, more complete understanding.

    • Replies: @Dmitry

    I think that you are missing the point or the value. Artists, almost by definition, have a different perspective. You need to look at their description or work to gain a different, could I say, more complete understanding.

     

    As expressed within the field where they have some talent or ability. But outside this area, it's often incredibly 'trite' and inadequate people.

    Just as I'm sure Versace has better perspective than all of us combined about women's dresses. But this does not mean I will treat him as an expert, if he gives me some opinions on politics or science.

    It can be even more specific. Beethoven created extremely mathematically complex music - yet, on mathematics? - he could not add up basic arithmetic.
  200. @Anonymous
    One could interpret Christianity as a parable for human nature and reconcile it with Nationalism. That there exist forbidden knowledge you are better off not knowing (Garden of Eden), that humans are prone to scapegoating (Jesus died for our sins), and that we consume/bring down the best of us or self-cannibalize (communion).

    It's a way to teach important lessons to people without them having to understand those lessons explicitly.

    On the other hand I think pride is not a vice but rather a virtue, modern Christians seem to think Pride being a vice is THE most important thing in Christianity. The western Christian church seems to have trouble maintaining itself.

    One could interpret Christianity as a parable for human nature and reconcile it with Nationalism.

    Christianity isn’t just a parable (nor just a set of ethics), it makes some very specific claims about history and the ultimate destiny of mankind. As St Paul himself wrote: And if Christ has not been raised, then all our preaching is useless, and your faith is useless. If you reduce it just to some allegory and a few moral precepts, the entire edifice crumbles.
    What you’re advocating for, is basically a pagan approach to religion imo: There is a transcendent god, but we know nothing of it, there is no divine revelation, and the myths aren’t events that really happened at some point in the past, but are symbols for recurrent phenomena of human life and the natural order. I have quite a bit of sympathy for such an approach, but it’s something completely different from the claims to absolute truth which revealed religions make.

    • Agree: Talha
  201. @Talha
    I think his point is; LARPing religion seems dorky since it is predicated on belief. It seems funny to have a nation supporting Christianity as an institution and nobody goes to church.

    It's a bit silly - at least from my perspective. But, if it works...

    Peace.

    It seems funny to have a nation supporting Christianity as an institution and nobody goes to church.

    Problem. Question. Solution.

    LARPing religion seems dorky

    Not really. You might remember from my comments that I have said that I have considered “faking it” because of the estrangement.

    • Replies: @Talha

    considered “faking it” because of the estrangement.
     
    Well, like I said..."but, if it works…"

    It's still dorky though from where I'm standing and seems a bit cowardly in not standing up to your convictions. I couldn't imagine faking a religion I didn't believe in unless they were going to put a bullet in my head - and even then I might think of taking the more commendable road of refusing to play along.

    The West was pagan, then Christian, then post-Christian and now "plays one on TV" is being suggested. I guess we'll see if this kind of cognitive dissonance will fly in the long run.

    I can tell you that in our tradition; insincerely pretending to be a Muslim (which is called a munafiq) for the worldly benefits it accrues is actually the worst form of disbelief...
    "Indeed, the hypocrites (munafiqun) will be in the lowest depths of the Fire - and never will you find for them a helper." (4:145)

    But everyone's got their own rules to play by.

    Peace.

    , @Anon

    Not really. You might remember from my comments that I have said that I have considered “faking it” because of the estrangement.
     
    Christ said "the truth will set you free" and iffen amended it only slightly to "the white lie will set you free".
  202. @Mike P

    So, what’s to comment on a demagogue?
     
    Don't hold back, tell us what you really think ;)

    I suspect though that German reader was more interested on your take on Solzhenitsyn himself than on the author of this piece. It seems that Solzhenitsyn polarises opinion among those who live or lived in the former Soviet Union. I, too, would value your opinion, if you have the time.

    I suspect though that German reader was more interested on your take on Solzhenitsyn

    I stated my position on him not for once on UNZ forums: a mediocre at best writer propelled to his popularity largely out of West’s ideological imperatives of the Cold War, a poseur and utterly amateur, or deliberately falsifying, “historian”.

    • Replies: @Mike P

    I stated my position on him not for once on UNZ forums a mediocre at best writer propelled to his popularity largely out of West’s ideological imperatives of the Cold War, a poseur and utterly amateur, or deliberately falsifying, “historian”.
     
    Thanks for repeating it for my benefit then - I found this site only recently.

    I have read him only in translation and am not an expert on Russian history. However, in translation, I do find his works such as Cancer Ward and August 1914 very well written.
  203. @Dmitry
    Not specifically replying to your comment, but rather the discussion on him as whole.

    Solzhenitsyn was a talented artist.

    The members of the creative professions are a very important type of person, but usually not suitable, or even the opposite of what is suitable, for a sober political leadership, or even sensible political commentary on that leadership.

    With all respect to van Gogh, while he was undisputed expert on describing interplay of light on a sunflower, I would not imagine he would have had the most accurate views on political organization of his society, let alone would I follow his advice on military or economic development.

    The accurate situation with Solzhenitsyn - a very talented creative professional, but less than objective or factually accurate historian or commentator.

    That said,members of the creative professions can be useful for politics, in helping to develop national mythology, and in supporting nationalist movements. This is a very historically common situation - with people like Verdi in Italy, or Janacek in Czech Republic, having a key influence in development of national consciousness.

    what is suitable, for a sober political leadership,

    Definition!

    And where in the fuck have you found it.

    • Replies: @Dmitry

    what is suitable, for a sober political leadership,

    Definition!

    And where in the fuck have you found it.
     
    Well, now - Putin is relatively relaxed/sober character, not a typical artist or novelist. And equally, you will not see any crazy on unpredictable things happening with this leadership.
  204. @AP

    The British had to be motivated by the whole issue of Belgium, violation of neutrality and German war crimes
     
    This was largely media-manufactured outrage. The real reason Britain went to war is because a German victory over Russia and France would have created a continental superpower that would completely eclipse Britain. Had the war been limited to Austria-Hungary punishing the Serb bandit-state Britain would never have been involved.

    The real reason Britain went to war is because a German victory over Russia and France would have created a continental superpower that would completely eclipse Britain.

    I’ve seen this many times before. Can we know that it is accurate?

    • Replies: @Talha
    I'm not sure it's completely accurate, but it certainly helped in the calculation:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NSI5LkRGOKg

    Peace.
    , @nickels
    Yes, this is accurate. Germany was a rising manufacturing power. The project of the Baghdad railroad was a direct economic threat to England's trade empire. Which is why they bought off Kuwait to end the railroad and started to maneuver in other ways to block Germany.
    Simple fact is that they could NOT compete in a free market.
    So Germany begain to build a navy, since they realized England would outmaneuver them otherwise.
    The rest is history.
    America only entered the war because of total diplomatic incompetence and the fact that the tie of Anglo blood and language was supreme over justice and neutrality.
    There was also the crusade for liberalism. The Anglo world hated finance not ruling (i.e. democracy). Although that didn't stop them from siding with Tsarist Russia.

    Dreadnought, Robert Massie
    On War, Frederick Clemson Howe
    Road To War, Walter Mills
    Hitler, Churchill and the Unnecessary War
  205. @Bardon Kaldian
    Solzhenitsyn was a false prophet (actually- most, if not all prophets are false). His world-view is, contrary to the author's claims, as irrelevant as Gandhi's vision of India. It was dated even when it came out.

    Solzhenitsyn will, I think, endure as the author of two remarkable novels in classic, 19th C realist tradition.

    Thanks for documenting your irrelevancy.

  206. @Bardon Kaldian
    Sartre was more an "intellectual" than philosopher. I tried to read his "Being & Nothingness" and gave up. Some British writer opined: the top of Sartre and T.S. Eliot is actually a bottom of a German theologian.

    This may sound like nothing more than wit, just.... Sartre's adventures with Maoism & other mental excursions seem now not only antiquated, but clearly lunatic. American critic Harold Bloom thought that the eminence of Sartre's opus was destroyed by 60s Counter-culture & I happen to agree, at least to a degree. Highly politicized faux-Marxist thought & this all existential lifestyle seem a thing safely buried in the past.

    J.K. Rowling is a celebrity novelist. More celebrity than novelist.

    Old Hollywood types (Mae West, Bogart, Spencer Tracy, Gary Cooper, Clara Bow, Clark Gable,..) mostly refrained from pontificating on politics & life in the universe. Unlike De Niro, Leo Di Caprio, Clooney, Streep, .. who pretend to have an informed opinion about, well, everything.

    In past 5000 years of human civilization, this is the first time clowns & other entertainers pose as sages & oracles.

    More celebrity than novelist.

    LOL

    • Replies: @Talha
    Everyone's a critic.

    Peace.
  207. @iffen
    It seems funny to have a nation supporting Christianity as an institution and nobody goes to church.

    Problem. Question. Solution.

    LARPing religion seems dorky

    Not really. You might remember from my comments that I have said that I have considered “faking it” because of the estrangement.

    considered “faking it” because of the estrangement.

    Well, like I said…”but, if it works…”

    It’s still dorky though from where I’m standing and seems a bit cowardly in not standing up to your convictions. I couldn’t imagine faking a religion I didn’t believe in unless they were going to put a bullet in my head – and even then I might think of taking the more commendable road of refusing to play along.

    The West was pagan, then Christian, then post-Christian and now “plays one on TV” is being suggested. I guess we’ll see if this kind of cognitive dissonance will fly in the long run.

    I can tell you that in our tradition; insincerely pretending to be a Muslim (which is called a munafiq) for the worldly benefits it accrues is actually the worst form of disbelief…
    “Indeed, the hypocrites (munafiqun) will be in the lowest depths of the Fire – and never will you find for them a helper.” (4:145)

    But everyone’s got their own rules to play by.

    Peace.

    • Replies: @iffen
    seems a bit cowardly in not standing up to your convictions.

    You are selling me a bit short, Talha. Also, you are proposing that your religious convictions are the ultimate value.

    I’m not thinking of an Elmer Gantry scenario. I just mean that I could conform to my community’s religious views because I value my community, not because of religious belief.

    I don’t see any conflict between the thrust of AK’s writings and an appreciation of and a place for the Russian Orthodox Church.

    In addition, the take-away from the whole of your comments that I have is that the common folk need to listen to and take their lead from the ulema and not think about it too much for themselves. That might work for you in the old country but that horse has left the barn here.
  208. @Anonymous
    One could interpret Christianity as a parable for human nature and reconcile it with Nationalism. That there exist forbidden knowledge you are better off not knowing (Garden of Eden), that humans are prone to scapegoating (Jesus died for our sins), and that we consume/bring down the best of us or self-cannibalize (communion).

    It's a way to teach important lessons to people without them having to understand those lessons explicitly.

    On the other hand I think pride is not a vice but rather a virtue, modern Christians seem to think Pride being a vice is THE most important thing in Christianity. The western Christian church seems to have trouble maintaining itself.

    No need to be allegorical.
    The story of the Tower of Babel explicitly teaches that a united humanity is a source of unmitigated evil, and that the cure is nations.

  209. @iffen
    The real reason Britain went to war is because a German victory over Russia and France would have created a continental superpower that would completely eclipse Britain.

    I've seen this many times before. Can we know that it is accurate?

    I’m not sure it’s completely accurate, but it certainly helped in the calculation:

    Peace.

  210. @melanf

    Leto Gospodne, Ivan Smelyov.
     
    Pseudo-historical novel almost forgotten in Russia.

    Huh?
    It is a book about a child’s faith and the seasons of the Orthodox church as experienced in pre-revolutionary Russia.
    Who cares if Russians have forgotten it.

  211. @iffen
    More celebrity than novelist.

    LOL

    Everyone’s a critic.

    Peace.

  212. @iffen
    The real reason Britain went to war is because a German victory over Russia and France would have created a continental superpower that would completely eclipse Britain.

    I've seen this many times before. Can we know that it is accurate?

    Yes, this is accurate. Germany was a rising manufacturing power. The project of the Baghdad railroad was a direct economic threat to England’s trade empire. Which is why they bought off Kuwait to end the railroad and started to maneuver in other ways to block Germany.
    Simple fact is that they could NOT compete in a free market.
    So Germany begain to build a navy, since they realized England would outmaneuver them otherwise.
    The rest is history.
    America only entered the war because of total diplomatic incompetence and the fact that the tie of Anglo blood and language was supreme over justice and neutrality.
    There was also the crusade for liberalism. The Anglo world hated finance not ruling (i.e. democracy). Although that didn’t stop them from siding with Tsarist Russia.

    Dreadnought, Robert Massie
    On War, Frederick Clemson Howe
    Road To War, Walter Mills
    Hitler, Churchill and the Unnecessary War

  213. @Verymuchalive
    " If Christianity goes, all of our culture goes with it." - TS Eliot
    If you don't realise this, you really are an idiot.

    No need to insult people. Btw, “German reader” is a shy zionist.
    Back to Christianity, this is a stake through the vampire hearts of the zionized US congresspeople of a supposedly ‘Christian’ persuasion:
    “Moscow, once a center of global Communism is rapidly transforming into a Vatican, or if you will, a Mecca of Conservatism. It is precisely here where the strongest redoubt that defends the image of mankind in its traditional Christian interpretation is now located.”

    • Replies: @iffen
    Btw, “German reader” is a shy zionist.

    God help me, I do love this comment section.
  214. @Bardon Kaldian
    Dostoevsky is one of the few supreme writers, along with Homer, Aeschylus, Dante, Shakespeare & some others. Not more than 7-10 people belong to that category (great writers like Flaubert, Conrad, Faulkner,.. are more numerous).

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.

    Truth to be told, he had his moments in his Writer’s Diary but I agree with you here. Dostoevsky the novelist, however, is not quite in Tolstoy’s league. Close but not quite. There is simply very little comparable to the scale and scope of War and Peace even despite many flaws of Tolstoy’s “philosophy” and his “historicity”.

    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian

    Dostoevsky the novelist, however, is not quite in Tolstoy’s league. Close but not quite.
     
    Here we disagree. I guess this is something temperamental. Surely, there is no way to "prove" who is greater. They both are among supreme writers, along Shakespeare, Dante & others.

    Tolstoy was & is admired by many "colleagues" who came after him, but Dostoevsky's progeny is significantly larger. Authors who considered him to be on the top (not excluding Tolstoy) are: Stefan Zweig, Kafka, Thomas Mann, E.M. Forster, Joyce, Freud, V. Woolf, Proust, Camus, Hamsun, Henry Miller, Faulkner, Coetzee, John Updike, William Gaddis, G. Garcia Marquez, Philip Roth, Saul Bellow, ..

    Those who expressed disdain or thought he was overrated: Conrad, Hesse, D.H. Lawrence, Nabokov,..

    I happen to agree with the 1st group.

    The whole issue is nicely summed up in George Steiner's: Tolstoy or Dostoevsky?

    https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51GtIWixYAL._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg
  215. @inertial

    Ukrainian history is heavily based on Cossacks and Cossack uprisings (including rough democratic heritage), Russia on Tsars
     
    I can see that you haven't studied history in the USSR.

    He’s prone to emphasizing selective cherry picks that distort actuality, while fitting his preferred takes.

    Pugachev’s uprising wasn’t for an early day Ukrainian nationalism. If anything, he sought to replace the existing Russian government with himself.

    That might’ve been very true of Mazepa as well. In any event Pugachev and Mazepa eventually failed, largely on account of most Cossacks opposing opposing them, as has been historically accepted.

  216. @Anon
    British commoners enlisted en masse because of Germany's commercial success?

    The masses are always manipulated by the propaganda of the state. The demonisation of the enemy is an art that was perfected since WWI. The treaty of Westphalia which had made wars a business that is strictly conducted between European armies was trashed when the British confiscated the wealth of the Germans who had deposited their money in British banks. The stories about German soldiers killing and maiming babies are very well documented. Unfortunately, the people were and still are the sheeple.

    • Replies: @Anon
    I have no objection to make, but I do not think the most skillful propaganda would have achieved the result it did if not for the invasion of Belgium and the stupid muttering about a "scrap of paper" which shocked normal Brits into believing the Germans capable of all the horrible crimes of which they were accused. Of course that's only an opinion.
  217. @notanon
    it was translated and i read it online at the time (some years ago now) but of course the people involved didn't have the copyright so it couldn't be sold legally - it was pretty eye opening, mostly data driven listing the percentage of politburu, camp kommandants, cheka etc who were Jewish.

    “…mostly data driven listing the percentage of politburu, camp kommandants, cheka etc who were Jewish.”
    — Guess this is what made “Dmitri” think that Solzhenitsyn is “an artist rather than a historian.” Hard to face the data that contradict the ideas of “eternal victimhood,” “the most moral” and such. See this new bill by South Carolina legislature: https://www.thecollegefix.com/post/43923/
    http://www.datelinecarolina.org/story/35202460/anti-semitism-bill-faces-criticism-over-freedom-of-speech

  218. @AP
    Hard to argue against physical objects, which are not fairy tales:

    https://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/Николаевский_собор_(Нежин)

    Hard to argue against physical objects, which are not fairy tales:


    Well, impressive achievement – the Church with a height of 50 meters (17th century)!!!
    The architecture is quite on the level of Timbuktu. Maybe even a little better. Undoubtedly Cossack “state” is the peak of world civilization.

    • Replies: @AP
    In melanf's world a 17th century baroque cathedral is the equivalent of a mud building in Africa.

    Good to know.
  219. @AP

    Ukrainian Cossacks were quite Pro-Russian
     
    Like Cossacks under Sahaidachny, who helped the Poles take Moscow and massacred as many Russians as they could get their hands on and sold many more to the Turks? How about his assistent who specialized in impaling Moscow boyars?

    Khmelytsky clashing with Russia over Belarus and them plotting with Swedes against Rusia before his death?

    His successor Vyhovsky allying with Poles?

    Doroshenko allying with Turks against Russia?

    Mazepa allying with Swedes?

    How about this guy. Obscure, but an interesting story:

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

    Count Vasily Vasilievich Kapnist (Russian: Василий Васильевич Капнист), (23 February 1758 – 9 November 1823), was a Russian poet and playwright of Greek origin.

    Kapnist's grandfather was a Venetian merchant of Greek origin from the island of Zakynthos. He was a descendant of the Venetian noble family of Capnissi (whose name derives from the Zakynthos surname Καπνίσης[1]), he spent all his life in the manor of Obukhovka near Poltava. Vasily's maternal ancestors were Cossack starshyna.

    Kapnist revealed himself as a savage satirist in his most famous work, a satirical verse drama based on the poet's litigation against a neighbour and aptly entitled Chicane (1798). His victims are the judges and officers of law, whom he paints as an unredeemed lot of thieves and extortioners. The play is in rather harsh Alexandrines but produces a powerful effect by the force of its passionate sarcasm. The poem is based on the Russian custom of state-appointed judges, whereas in Ukraine the judges were previously elected. The poem caused the Czar's extreme displeasure, and he ordered Kapnist "to be erased from memory", causing total ban on any of his literary efforts.

    Although Kapnist dedicated his play to Emperor Paul, it was denounced by the censorship as scurrilous and libertarian. Banned after only four performances, it was not revived in St. Petersburg until 1805. According to D.S. Mirsky, "the two greatest Russian comedies of the 19th century, Griboyedov's Woe from Wit and Gogol's Inspector General, owe not a little to the crude and primitive comedy of Kapnist".[2]

    Kapnist was a proponent of the restoration of Ukrainian autonomy in the Russian Empire after Hetmanate was abolished by Catherine II. In 1788, he wrote a petition proposing the empress to restore the cossack host in Ukrainian lands and use its soldiers in the ongoing war against Turkey. However, when the military situation improved, the imperial government refused to implement this plan.[3] In April 1791, either Kapnist or one of his brothers had a secret meeting with Prussian chancellor Ewald Friedrich Graf von Hertzberg, trying to persuade the Prussian government to declare war on Russia in case an uprising starts against Russian rule in Ukraine. However, this mission was unsuccessful as king Friedrich Wilhelm II refused to give his own consent for such an action.

    :::::::::::::

    Ukrainians forced under Russian rule do what they do: typically involved in some anti-Russian plots with Russia's Western rivals.

    You keep repeating BS that has been already debunked. Mazepa and Vyhovksy lost for the generally accepted reason that they didn’t have majority support among the folks they purported to represent.

    Khmelnytsky opposed Polish imperialism, which included a stated opposition to the further imposition of the Greek Catholic denomination favored by Poland. This led him to eventually allying with Russia. His reported latter day differences with Russia didn’t lead to the territory in his domain opposing Russia en masse.

    Once again, Russia had democratic trappings, more so than you suggest in an inaccurate manner.

    I’ll add more on that in a bit.

  220. @AnonFromTN
    To be quite fair, Solzhenitsyn had some literary talent, which might have made him a great writer in Latvian or Estonian literature. However, in Russian literature he is about third-rate. As Dostoyevsky rightly said in “Demons”, it is hard to be a second-rate talent. As for lies, most of what he wrote was either lies, or the truth twisted beyond recognition. I am not sure about CIA, but he did publicly ask the US to nuke the USSR, which is even worse than being a CIA asset.

    The speech in question where Solzhenitsyn “publicly asks the US to nuke the USSR” (according to sovok propagandists).

    Transliteration:

    At one time there was no comparison between the strength of the USSR and yours. Then it became equal… (The Soviet advantage grew). Then (it became) three to one. Finally, it will be five to one… With such a nuclear superiority it will be possible to block the use of your weapons, and on some unlucky morning they will declare: ‘Attention. We’re marching our troops to Europe, and if you make a move, we will annihilate you.’ And this ratio… of five to one will have its effect: you will not make a move.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    Well, he did, he called on the US to attack the USSR, and then realized how this would look in the eyes of Russians and tried to deny it.
    "The Grain Between the Millstones:" "My God, I was not calling for war, the US press distorted it, but that's how it reached our compatriots ... Try to prove them otherwise now." (The New World, 1999, N 2, p. 83).
    A liar is always a liar, even when he denies his lies.
  221. @Dmitry
    And the opinion of a talented artist, can often be surprisingly trite and just a collection of cliches, the moment you ask him something not related to his specialty (which in Solzhenitsyn's case was making characters and stories). On the other hand, these views might be held with a high degree of certainty, more characteristic of a real expert - but this certainty comes from the arrogance of the artist's personality, rather scholarly expertise.

    It reminds a little bit of nowadays, when people expect a good actor, to have more profound political views than a less artistically talented person. Really the two skills are quite unrelated, and in Solzhenitsyn's case, this is almost the case - as when a novelist/fabulist tries to write history books - that the strength of one contributes to the weakness of the other.

    You obviously have a grudge against Solzhenitsyn. First, you made a confession that you had not read his book, then you immediately proceeded to slander the DOCUMENTARY.
    Unlike you, Alexander Solzhenitsyn has open access to the state archives. Unlike your Jewish dislike of everything Russian, Alexander Solzhenitsyn was devoted to Russia unconditionally… This is why he was sent to GULAG. — For being honest.
    What is your degree of courage, “Dmitry?” — Enough to spill your doubts (uninformed) about the late author?

  222. @Andrei Martyanov

    I suspect though that German reader was more interested on your take on Solzhenitsyn
     
    I stated my position on him not for once on UNZ forums: a mediocre at best writer propelled to his popularity largely out of West's ideological imperatives of the Cold War, a poseur and utterly amateur, or deliberately falsifying, "historian".

    I stated my position on him not for once on UNZ forums a mediocre at best writer propelled to his popularity largely out of West’s ideological imperatives of the Cold War, a poseur and utterly amateur, or deliberately falsifying, “historian”.

    Thanks for repeating it for my benefit then – I found this site only recently.

    I have read him only in translation and am not an expert on Russian history. However, in translation, I do find his works such as Cancer Ward and August 1914 very well written.

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    I do find his works such as Cancer Ward and August 1914 very well written.
     
    Cancer Ward is more-or-less readable. The rest by him, is utterly unreadable in Russian.

    I have read him only in translation and am not an expert on Russian history
     
    Neither is he and he was debunked so many times already from Left, Center and Right that it is not worth repeating. His views on WWII are views of amateur and falsifier, with his falsifications sometimes reaching grotesque proportions.
    , @Mikhail
    Sovoks like his WW I book because he relied too much on what was available for him at the time in Russia. Specifically, the Sovok WW I take.

    For this reason, it's not one of his better books. The timing of when WW I started and how Russia fought that war, in conjunction with the Red sabotage against that Russian war effort, are factors that Sovoks typically downplay, for the purpose of portraying a weak Russia in need of the Reds.

  223. @Bardon Kaldian
    Sartre was more an "intellectual" than philosopher. I tried to read his "Being & Nothingness" and gave up. Some British writer opined: the top of Sartre and T.S. Eliot is actually a bottom of a German theologian.

    This may sound like nothing more than wit, just.... Sartre's adventures with Maoism & other mental excursions seem now not only antiquated, but clearly lunatic. American critic Harold Bloom thought that the eminence of Sartre's opus was destroyed by 60s Counter-culture & I happen to agree, at least to a degree. Highly politicized faux-Marxist thought & this all existential lifestyle seem a thing safely buried in the past.

    J.K. Rowling is a celebrity novelist. More celebrity than novelist.

    Old Hollywood types (Mae West, Bogart, Spencer Tracy, Gary Cooper, Clara Bow, Clark Gable,..) mostly refrained from pontificating on politics & life in the universe. Unlike De Niro, Leo Di Caprio, Clooney, Streep, .. who pretend to have an informed opinion about, well, everything.

    In past 5000 years of human civilization, this is the first time clowns & other entertainers pose as sages & oracles.

    Sartre was more an “intellectual” than philosopher. I tried to read his “Being & Nothingness”

    Yeah, reading Nekrasov can radiate one’s brain into the raisin. After, however, Age of Consent Letter I only experience desire to wash hands after touching anything by these “intellectual” characters. Pedophilia, of course, being a very very “intellectual” thing. It is the same as “intellectual signalling” by reading Lolita and praising it as a remarkable work of literature and I read it in both Russian and English. I guess I am not “sophisticated” enough.

    Old Hollywood types (Mae West, Bogart, Spencer Tracy, Gary Cooper, Clara Bow, Clark Gable,..) mostly refrained from pontificating on politics & life in the universe. Unlike De Niro, Leo Di Caprio, Clooney, Streep, .. who pretend to have an informed opinion about, well, everything.

    In past 5000 years of human civilization, this is the first time clowns & other entertainers pose as sages & oracles.

    Today we have journalists and philosophers planning military operations, we have sociologists and political scientists “analyzing” target acquisition protocols in cruise missiles, in the end, we have cashier machine operators consulting on military-intelligence matters and all this is a full blown mainstream. So, why not ignorant uneducated “stars” and other artsy types have their opinion (promoted no less by media) on such issues as atmospheric sciences or aerospace? It is well-know fact that in Hollywood, in the breaks between shooting movies pretending to be someone else and socializing in the “exclusive” clubs, all Hollywood stars dedicate all their efforts in studying Theory of Operations, differential equations and radio-electronics. Somehow, I think, we can be grateful to all those “intellectuals” such as Sartre for such state of the affairs.

  224. @Mike P

    I stated my position on him not for once on UNZ forums a mediocre at best writer propelled to his popularity largely out of West’s ideological imperatives of the Cold War, a poseur and utterly amateur, or deliberately falsifying, “historian”.
     
    Thanks for repeating it for my benefit then - I found this site only recently.

    I have read him only in translation and am not an expert on Russian history. However, in translation, I do find his works such as Cancer Ward and August 1914 very well written.

    I do find his works such as Cancer Ward and August 1914 very well written.

    Cancer Ward is more-or-less readable. The rest by him, is utterly unreadable in Russian.

    I have read him only in translation and am not an expert on Russian history

    Neither is he and he was debunked so many times already from Left, Center and Right that it is not worth repeating. His views on WWII are views of amateur and falsifier, with his falsifications sometimes reaching grotesque proportions.

  225. @Anatoly Karlin
    The speech in question where Solzhenitsyn "publicly asks the US to nuke the USSR" (according to sovok propagandists).

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-bOTB6X71U

    Transliteration:

    At one time there was no comparison between the strength of the USSR and yours. Then it became equal… (The Soviet advantage grew). Then (it became) three to one. Finally, it will be five to one… With such a nuclear superiority it will be possible to block the use of your weapons, and on some unlucky morning they will declare: 'Attention. We're marching our troops to Europe, and if you make a move, we will annihilate you.' And this ratio… of five to one will have its effect: you will not make a move.
     

    Well, he did, he called on the US to attack the USSR, and then realized how this would look in the eyes of Russians and tried to deny it.
    “The Grain Between the Millstones:” “My God, I was not calling for war, the US press distorted it, but that’s how it reached our compatriots … Try to prove them otherwise now.” (The New World, 1999, N 2, p. 83).
    A liar is always a liar, even when he denies his lies.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Where did Solzhenitsyn call on the US to attack the USSR?

    PS. Shifting of the goalposts from calling on the US to nuke the USSR is duly noted.
  226. @Mike P

    I stated my position on him not for once on UNZ forums a mediocre at best writer propelled to his popularity largely out of West’s ideological imperatives of the Cold War, a poseur and utterly amateur, or deliberately falsifying, “historian”.
     
    Thanks for repeating it for my benefit then - I found this site only recently.

    I have read him only in translation and am not an expert on Russian history. However, in translation, I do find his works such as Cancer Ward and August 1914 very well written.

    Sovoks like his WW I book because he relied too much on what was available for him at the time in Russia. Specifically, the Sovok WW I take.

    For this reason, it’s not one of his better books. The timing of when WW I started and how Russia fought that war, in conjunction with the Red sabotage against that Russian war effort, are factors that Sovoks typically downplay, for the purpose of portraying a weak Russia in need of the Reds.

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    Sovoks like his WW I book because he relied too much on what was available for him at the time in Russia. Specifically, the Sovok WW I take.
     
    I am Sovok and I rely on a good knowledge of Russian classical and Soviet literature, plus my teenie-weenie military and academic (I omit here life) experiences, to seriously doubt that you know what are you talking about since you do not even apply the term properly. And yes, Sovoks in general do not like any of his literature. While at it--I would suggest you educate yourself on some data of Russian Imperial General Staff (easily found in one of Krivosheev's statistical monographs on Russian/Red/Soviet Army) and apply at least CINC framework way before "sabotage" by Reds.
  227. @AnonFromTN
    Well, he did, he called on the US to attack the USSR, and then realized how this would look in the eyes of Russians and tried to deny it.
    "The Grain Between the Millstones:" "My God, I was not calling for war, the US press distorted it, but that's how it reached our compatriots ... Try to prove them otherwise now." (The New World, 1999, N 2, p. 83).
    A liar is always a liar, even when he denies his lies.

    Where did Solzhenitsyn call on the US to attack the USSR?

    PS. Shifting of the goalposts from calling on the US to nuke the USSR is duly noted.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    Right in that video you posted. Nobody is as blind as someone who does not want to see. Similarly, nobody is as deaf as someone who does not want to hear. Your deafness duly noted. Why am I not surprised?
    , @Andrei Martyanov

    Shifting of the goalposts from calling on the US to nuke the USSR is duly noted.
     
    Karlin, you continue to exhibit yourself as a fraud you are and omit here, of course, what was completely in his response to you. But then again, from the video--where is the phrase "Must you wait until..." at 0:49 Uh? What a sterile "transcript". This is not to speak of the fact of this "prophet" lying like hell knows who on the topic of which, of course, he never had a clue. Just to remind you to listen to this again:

    https://youtu.be/0r12mBKckBY
  228. @melanf

    Hard to argue against physical objects, which are not fairy tales:
     
    https://img-fotki.yandex.ru/get/6406/8644080.2c/0_84868_74656b1a_XL.jpg

    Well, impressive achievement - the Church with a height of 50 meters (17th century)!!!
    The architecture is quite on the level of Timbuktu. Maybe even a little better. Undoubtedly Cossack "state" is the peak of world civilization.

    In melanf’s world a 17th century baroque cathedral is the equivalent of a mud building in Africa.

    Good to know.

  229. @Andrei Martyanov

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.
     
    Truth to be told, he had his moments in his Writer's Diary but I agree with you here. Dostoevsky the novelist, however, is not quite in Tolstoy's league. Close but not quite. There is simply very little comparable to the scale and scope of War and Peace even despite many flaws of Tolstoy's "philosophy" and his "historicity".

    Dostoevsky the novelist, however, is not quite in Tolstoy’s league. Close but not quite.

    Here we disagree. I guess this is something temperamental. Surely, there is no way to “prove” who is greater. They both are among supreme writers, along Shakespeare, Dante & others.

    Tolstoy was & is admired by many “colleagues” who came after him, but Dostoevsky’s progeny is significantly larger. Authors who considered him to be on the top (not excluding Tolstoy) are: Stefan Zweig, Kafka, Thomas Mann, E.M. Forster, Joyce, Freud, V. Woolf, Proust, Camus, Hamsun, Henry Miller, Faulkner, Coetzee, John Updike, William Gaddis, G. Garcia Marquez, Philip Roth, Saul Bellow, ..

    Those who expressed disdain or thought he was overrated: Conrad, Hesse, D.H. Lawrence, Nabokov,..

    I happen to agree with the 1st group.

    The whole issue is nicely summed up in George Steiner’s: Tolstoy or Dostoevsky?

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    I find this argument pointless. They are very different. However, both Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky are so close to the top of world literature, that it makes no difference. I’d put Bulgakov and possibly Sholokhov (for “Quietly Flows the Don”) in the same league.

    Getting back to this article, Solzhenitsyn is nowhere near either of them. He is way below even the second-tier Russian writers (like Gogol), in my view even below the third tier (say, Turgenev, who was mocked by Dostoyevsky). When I was younger and dumber I read a lot of Solzhenitsyn’s stuff. The only thing I really liked is “One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich”, but even compared to that Shalamov’s description of camps is better. Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.
    , @Dmitry
    Dostoevsky is more addictive and enjoyable while you are reading him (I have not read all his novels, but a few).

    Tolstoy - in his famous work like Anna Karenina - you remember scenes and character for a lot longer - it creates a much stronger physical and visual image. Even if you read it slowly and without great enjoyment, you can never forget it afterwards.

    In Dostoevsky, characters all blur in my head, and I just remember emotions and addictiveness of the books, as with the good detective novels.

  230. @Mikhail
    Sovoks like his WW I book because he relied too much on what was available for him at the time in Russia. Specifically, the Sovok WW I take.

    For this reason, it's not one of his better books. The timing of when WW I started and how Russia fought that war, in conjunction with the Red sabotage against that Russian war effort, are factors that Sovoks typically downplay, for the purpose of portraying a weak Russia in need of the Reds.

    Sovoks like his WW I book because he relied too much on what was available for him at the time in Russia. Specifically, the Sovok WW I take.

    I am Sovok and I rely on a good knowledge of Russian classical and Soviet literature, plus my teenie-weenie military and academic (I omit here life) experiences, to seriously doubt that you know what are you talking about since you do not even apply the term properly. And yes, Sovoks in general do not like any of his literature. While at it–I would suggest you educate yourself on some data of Russian Imperial General Staff (easily found in one of Krivosheev’s statistical monographs on Russian/Red/Soviet Army) and apply at least CINC framework way before “sabotage” by Reds.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    You also have a cranky side to you, in addition to not successfully refuting anything that I said.
  231. @Anatoly Karlin
    Where did Solzhenitsyn call on the US to attack the USSR?

    PS. Shifting of the goalposts from calling on the US to nuke the USSR is duly noted.

    Right in that video you posted. Nobody is as blind as someone who does not want to see. Similarly, nobody is as deaf as someone who does not want to hear. Your deafness duly noted. Why am I not surprised?

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    Right in that video you posted.
     
    He "skipped" the most crucial phrase in his "transcript". With his Idol effectively appealing to the US "Must you wait until..." But, of course, it is expected from him. He read very little (which idolizing Solzh testifies to) in his life and doesn't understand the difference between incitement and merely narrative. Start your stopwatch to mark him going into his MO of obfuscation, lies and ignoring obvious.
  232. @Anatoly Karlin
    Where did Solzhenitsyn call on the US to attack the USSR?

    PS. Shifting of the goalposts from calling on the US to nuke the USSR is duly noted.

    Shifting of the goalposts from calling on the US to nuke the USSR is duly noted.

    Karlin, you continue to exhibit yourself as a fraud you are and omit here, of course, what was completely in his response to you. But then again, from the video–where is the phrase “Must you wait until…” at 0:49 Uh? What a sterile “transcript”. This is not to speak of the fact of this “prophet” lying like hell knows who on the topic of which, of course, he never had a clue. Just to remind you to listen to this again:

  233. @Andrei Martyanov

    Sovoks like his WW I book because he relied too much on what was available for him at the time in Russia. Specifically, the Sovok WW I take.
     
    I am Sovok and I rely on a good knowledge of Russian classical and Soviet literature, plus my teenie-weenie military and academic (I omit here life) experiences, to seriously doubt that you know what are you talking about since you do not even apply the term properly. And yes, Sovoks in general do not like any of his literature. While at it--I would suggest you educate yourself on some data of Russian Imperial General Staff (easily found in one of Krivosheev's statistical monographs on Russian/Red/Soviet Army) and apply at least CINC framework way before "sabotage" by Reds.

    You also have a cranky side to you, in addition to not successfully refuting anything that I said.

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    You also have a cranky side to you, in addition to not successfully refuting anything that I said.
     
    I hope you are competent enough to understand refutations on this matter and since we at it, here is Krivosheev, make your own conclusion.

    https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-6SNDmtJqpB4/WdOVSYJaFXI/AAAAAAAABKw/_0KjfXayF2U9ViH1mStCJD_xRcovKz0oACLcBGAs/s1600/WWI.jpg

    Here is WW I at a glance in crucial military hardware categories. And what is cranky side? Putting actual facts and numbers forth is a "cranky side"?

  234. @Mikhail
    With a hill billy nationalism and convoluted spin of history, pro-Bandera Galicia-Volhyn Ukrainians are renown for being quite xenophobic towards a range of others. That mindset has extended within elements of the Ukrainian diaspora and in varying parts of Ukraine outside of Galicia and Volhyn.

    Ukrainians thinking more long my lines have observed this as have others.

    Many Russians have an internationalist view that wasn't the result of Communism. Russians have historically accepted many non-Russians who showed a friendliness and loyalty towards them. Many of those stating an ethnic Russian background readily and proudly reference being of other backgrounds as well.

    Russia has reached out to the West. The current Russian apprehension with the West is a quite understandable response to the anti-Russian biases that have influenced many in the West.

    Thru the centuries, Russia has experienced democratic trappings - something that was (as a rarity) brought up in a recent WaPo oped-ed that JRL ran.

    So much for the sugar coated svidomite stereotyping.

    Link to the WaPo article?

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    Yeah I'm looking for that piece, as well as a cogent follow-up to it from a friend. JRL posted the article in question. If I'm not mistaken, it appeared within the past 12 months.
  235. @annamaria
    No need to insult people. Btw, "German reader" is a shy zionist.
    Back to Christianity, this is a stake through the vampire hearts of the zionized US congresspeople of a supposedly 'Christian' persuasion:
    "Moscow, once a center of global Communism is rapidly transforming into a Vatican, or if you will, a Mecca of Conservatism. It is precisely here where the strongest redoubt that defends the image of mankind in its traditional Christian interpretation is now located."

    Btw, “German reader” is a shy zionist.

    God help me, I do love this comment section.

  236. @Dmitry

    There is an interesting difference in between Russia and the UK on tea. Russians I believe take their tea with lemon juice, whereas the UK takes their tea with cream.

     

    The difference is sometimes making a strong tea, and then diluting it with water. For British (who famous connoisseurs about tea), this is seen as a kind of crime against tea.

    As for a question about using milk or not? - actually in London, you will find they are often drinking tea without milk. For example, Twining's Earl Grey (tea flavored with Bergamot) is not supposed to be with milk. And they give at the restaurant you milk only separately if you want it.

    “Twining’s Earl Grey (tea flavored with Bergamot) is not supposed to be with milk.”

    But many Brits do drink it with milk, I’m one of them.

    Incidentally Twinings, that most British of companies, moved production of their tea to Poland for the lower wages, as a result of which I no longer buy their products. Not because of dislike of the Poles (I’m happy to drink a Tyskie or two), but because the company expect Brits to buy their tea, but no longer want to pay them to make it.

    (They are owned by Associated “British” Foods, a multinational)

    • Replies: @Talha
    Wait - you mean people drink Earl Grey without milk? What kind of monsters are they??!!

    Being originally from Pakistan, I can't see milk-less tea as anything but a heresy!!!

    moved production of their tea to Poland for the lower wages
     
    At least they didn't move it to Bangladesh...

    Peace.
  237. @Bigly
    Link to the WaPo article?

    Yeah I’m looking for that piece, as well as a cogent follow-up to it from a friend. JRL posted the article in question. If I’m not mistaken, it appeared within the past 12 months.

  238. @AnonFromTN
    Right in that video you posted. Nobody is as blind as someone who does not want to see. Similarly, nobody is as deaf as someone who does not want to hear. Your deafness duly noted. Why am I not surprised?

    Right in that video you posted.

    He “skipped” the most crucial phrase in his “transcript”. With his Idol effectively appealing to the US “Must you wait until…” But, of course, it is expected from him. He read very little (which idolizing Solzh testifies to) in his life and doesn’t understand the difference between incitement and merely narrative. Start your stopwatch to mark him going into his MO of obfuscation, lies and ignoring obvious.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Once again, where exactly is the call to attack - let alone nuke - the USSR? As in, Solzhenitsyn explicitly saying that (as opposed to sovoks projecting it).

    Second, given your claims, I took the trouble of locating the the entire speech on the Internet.

    And the results were hilarious. The video is even more blatantly propagandistic than I thought.

    1. It dishonestly splices together two very separate parts of the speech [highlighted in bold] to give the impression (to sovoks, not normal people) that Solzhenitsyn was calling on the US to nuke the USSR.

    2. Solzhenitsyn said the exact opposite of what sovoks claim he said: "After my first address, as always, there were some superficial comments in the newspapers which did not really get to the essence. One of them was as follows: that I came here with an appeal to the United States to liberate us from communism. Anyone who has at all followed what I have said and written these many years; first in the Soviet Union and now in the West; will know that I've always said the exact opposite. I have appealed to my own countrymen - those whose courage has failed at difficult moments, and who have looked imploringly to the West - and urged them: "Don't wait for assistance, and don't ask for it; we must stand on our own feet. The West has enough troubles without us. If they support us, many thanks. But to ask for it, to appeal for it - never."

    3. Just a note that sovoks have trawled all of Solzhenitsyn's work and speeches for evidence of his Russophobia. And this stitched-up crap is apparently one of the most damning examples they have found. LOL.

    At one time there was no comparison between the strength of the USSR and yours. Then it became equal to yours. Now, as all recognize, it is becoming superior to yours. Perhaps today the ratio is just greater than equal, but soon it will be 2 to 1 , then 3 to 1. Finally it will be 5 to 1.

    I'm not a specialist in this area, and you're not specialists either, I suppose, but this can hardly be accidental. I think that if the armaments they had before were enough, they would not have driven things further. There must be some reason for it. With such a nuclear superiority it will be possible to block the use of your weapons, and on some unlucky morning they will declare: "Attention. We're marching our troops to Europe, and if you make a move, we will annihilate you." And this ratio of 3 to 1, or 5 to 1 will have its effect: you will not make a move. Indeed, theoreticians will be found to say, "If only we can have that blessed silence . . ."

    To make a comparison with chess, this is like two players who are sitting at a chess board, one of whom has a tremendously high opinion of himself and a rather low opinion of his opponent. He thinks that he will, of course, outplay his opponent. He thinks he is so clever, so calculating, so inventive, that he will certainly win. He sits there, he calculates his moves. With these two knights he will make four forks. He can hardly wait for his opponent to move. He's squirming on his chair out of happiness. He takes off his glasses, wipes them, and puts them back on again. He doesn't even admit the possibility that his opponent may be more clever. He doesn't even see that his pawns are being taken one after the other and that his castle is under threat. It all seems to him.. "Aha, that's what we'll do. We'll set Moscow, Peking, Pyongyang, Hanoi one against the other."

    But what a joke! No one will do any such thing! In the meantime, you've been outplayed in West Berlin; you've been very skillfully outplayed in Portugal. In the Near East you're being outplayed. One shouldn't have such a low opinion of one's opponent.

    ... [many other things] ...

    I understand, I sense that you're tired. You're fatigued, but you have not yet really suffered the terrible trials of the 20th century which have rained down on the old continent. You're tired, but not as tired as we are, lying crushed to the ground for 60 years. You're tired, but the Communists who want to destroy your system aren't tired; they're not tired at all.
    I understand that this is the most unfavorable time to come to this country and to make this sort of address. But if it were a favorable time, if it were an appropriate time, there wouldn't be any need for me to speak.

    Precisely because this is the worst possible time I have come to tell you about our experience over there. If our experience in the East could flow over to you by itself, it wouldn't be necessary for me to assume the unpleasant and inappropriate role of orator. I am a writer, and I would prefer to sit and write books. But a concentration of world evil, of hatred for humanity is taking place and it is fully determined to destroy your society. Must you wait until it comes with a crowbar to break through your borders, until the young men of America have to fall defending the borders of their continent?

    After my first address, as always, there were some superficial comments in the newspapers which did not really get to the essence. One of them was as follows: that I came here with an appeal to the United States to liberate us from communism. Anyone who has at all followed what I have said and written these many years; first in the Soviet Union and now in the West; will know that I've always said the exact opposite. I have appealed to my own countrymen - those whose courage has failed at difficult moments, and who have looked imploringly to the West - and urged them: "Don't wait for assistance, and don't ask for it; we must stand on our own feet. The West has enough troubles without us. If they support us, many thanks. But to ask for it, to appeal for it - never."

    I said the last time that two processes are occurring in the world today. One is a process of spiritual liberation in the USSR and in the other Communist countries.

    The second is the assistance being extended by the West to the Communist rulers, a process of concessions, of detente, of yielding whole countries.

    And I only said: "'Remember, we have to pull ourselves up - but if you defend us you also defend your own future." We are slaves there from birth. We are born slaves. I'm not young anymore, and I myself was born a slave; this is even more true for those who are younger. We are slaves, but we are striving for freedom. You, however, were born free. If so, then why do you help our slave owners?
     
  239. @YetAnotherAnon
    "Twining’s Earl Grey (tea flavored with Bergamot) is not supposed to be with milk."

    But many Brits do drink it with milk, I'm one of them.

    Incidentally Twinings, that most British of companies, moved production of their tea to Poland for the lower wages, as a result of which I no longer buy their products. Not because of dislike of the Poles (I'm happy to drink a Tyskie or two), but because the company expect Brits to buy their tea, but no longer want to pay them to make it.

    (They are owned by Associated "British" Foods, a multinational)

    Wait – you mean people drink Earl Grey without milk? What kind of monsters are they??!!

    Being originally from Pakistan, I can’t see milk-less tea as anything but a heresy!!!

    moved production of their tea to Poland for the lower wages

    At least they didn’t move it to Bangladesh…

    Peace.

    • Replies: @Anon
    Eh?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kahwah
     
    Only kidding, I understand you.

    moved production of their tea to Poland for the lower wages

     

    Okay. But what if the rotten Polskis nationalize the tea plantations? Where will the Queen be then?
  240. @Mikhail
    You also have a cranky side to you, in addition to not successfully refuting anything that I said.

    You also have a cranky side to you, in addition to not successfully refuting anything that I said.

    I hope you are competent enough to understand refutations on this matter and since we at it, here is Krivosheev, make your own conclusion.

    Here is WW I at a glance in crucial military hardware categories. And what is cranky side? Putting actual facts and numbers forth is a “cranky side”?

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    Max Hastings notes that if WW I was fought in 1916, as opposed to 1914, the outcome on the eastern front and Russia's fate might've been very different. He's not alone in that belief.

    Russia wasn't prepared to launch the offensive it did in the earlier part of WW I. That move which helped France was detrimental to Russia. For Russia, that attack led to decreased morale and Red agitation. Even though Russia's armaments situation is said to have improved by 1917, its morale reached a low point for the reasons described. If the first part of this last set of points is under dispute, it should be followed up on in great detail.

    We know about Lenin's dealing with the Germans, including German support for the Reds. A matter related to the character in Pasternak's Dr. Zhivago, who is portrayed as seeking to subvert Russia's WW I effort.

    Stalin likely had Russia's WW I experience in mind, when he showed a reluctance to not initially confront Germany - even though he was warned of an impending German attack.

  241. @Bardon Kaldian

    Dostoevsky the novelist, however, is not quite in Tolstoy’s league. Close but not quite.
     
    Here we disagree. I guess this is something temperamental. Surely, there is no way to "prove" who is greater. They both are among supreme writers, along Shakespeare, Dante & others.

    Tolstoy was & is admired by many "colleagues" who came after him, but Dostoevsky's progeny is significantly larger. Authors who considered him to be on the top (not excluding Tolstoy) are: Stefan Zweig, Kafka, Thomas Mann, E.M. Forster, Joyce, Freud, V. Woolf, Proust, Camus, Hamsun, Henry Miller, Faulkner, Coetzee, John Updike, William Gaddis, G. Garcia Marquez, Philip Roth, Saul Bellow, ..

    Those who expressed disdain or thought he was overrated: Conrad, Hesse, D.H. Lawrence, Nabokov,..

    I happen to agree with the 1st group.

    The whole issue is nicely summed up in George Steiner's: Tolstoy or Dostoevsky?

    https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51GtIWixYAL._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

    I find this argument pointless. They are very different. However, both Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky are so close to the top of world literature, that it makes no difference. I’d put Bulgakov and possibly Sholokhov (for “Quietly Flows the Don”) in the same league.

    Getting back to this article, Solzhenitsyn is nowhere near either of them. He is way below even the second-tier Russian writers (like Gogol), in my view even below the third tier (say, Turgenev, who was mocked by Dostoyevsky). When I was younger and dumber I read a lot of Solzhenitsyn’s stuff. The only thing I really liked is “One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich”, but even compared to that Shalamov’s description of camps is better. Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.

    • Replies: @German_reader

    Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.
     
    Could you elaborate a bit on the contrast?
    , @Bardon Kaldian
    I'll just state my opinion (after all, literary discussion is not what this thread is about).

    However, both Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky are so close to the top of world literature, that it makes no difference. I’d put Bulgakov and possibly Sholokhov (for “Quietly Flows the Don”) in the same league.
     
    Bulgakov & Sholokhov are good writers, but they're not even close. The only 20th C writer who belongs to the "supreme" category is Marcel Proust. I was glad to see that Forster and George Steiner were of the same opinion.

    Getting back to this article, Solzhenitsyn is nowhere near either of them. He is way below even the second-tier Russian writers (like Gogol), in my view even below the third tier (say, Turgenev, who was mocked by Dostoyevsky).
     

    These things are hard to compare. Solzhenitsyn is an impressive writer in the vein of 19th C tradition, in his two novels (The First Circle, Cancer Ward)- vivid characterization, love story, satire etc., despite occasional clumsiness. Of course, he is not a modernist (high or post-) & he's plainly inferior to great 20th C authors like Mann or Conrad. Just, his work remains highly readable & will be considered, I think, close to realist 20th C novelists like Martin Du Gard.

    TGA is a political pamphlet containing gems, but as a whole- I've read it long time ago- it is formless & artless. Most critics argue about authenticity of this or that detail. In the long run, this seems to be of secondary importance.

    Solzhenitsyn as a political writer (or "prophet") is not great; but, he's rather good as a classical novelist.

    The only thing I really liked is “One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich”, but even compared to that Shalamov’s description of camps is better. Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.
     

    Shalamov's "Kolyma Tales" seem to me greater achievement in the field of "ccamp literature", but Solzhenitsyn has more to offer in his novels.

    Documentary value is not the issue here.

  242. @AnonFromTN
    I find this argument pointless. They are very different. However, both Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky are so close to the top of world literature, that it makes no difference. I’d put Bulgakov and possibly Sholokhov (for “Quietly Flows the Don”) in the same league.

    Getting back to this article, Solzhenitsyn is nowhere near either of them. He is way below even the second-tier Russian writers (like Gogol), in my view even below the third tier (say, Turgenev, who was mocked by Dostoyevsky). When I was younger and dumber I read a lot of Solzhenitsyn’s stuff. The only thing I really liked is “One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich”, but even compared to that Shalamov’s description of camps is better. Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.

    Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.

    Could you elaborate a bit on the contrast?

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    Could you elaborate a bit on the contrast?
     
    Just to give you one insight, Shalamov, from who Solzh stole (It is documented and Shalamov warned about him willing to steal) half of GULAG Archipelago, pointed out that Solzhenitsyn describes cats in his camps--this is a lie. Cats and dogs didn't exist in and around camps since they were eaten long ago, especially that was true in late 1930s--worst times in GULAG. Solzhentsyn was never subjected to horrors he literally stole from Shalamov, who did go through an enormous ordeal in his life.
    , @AnonFromTN
    If you can read Russian, I suggest you read any of the “Kolyma stories” by Shalamov (or all of them, better yet) and Solzhenitsyn’s “One day…”. You’d be struck by unpretentiousness of Shalamov’s prose, as opposed to rather contrived Solzhenytsin’s narrative. I don’t know whether this quality of prose is apparent in English, I read both in Russian. Then if you compare their biographies, Shalamov spent his time in the regular camps, whereas Solzhenitsyn only was in VIP ones, which made many people believe that he was NKVD/MGB/KGB informer, both before and after his arrest. BTW, the name “solzhenitsyn” has a Russian root “solgat”, which means to tell a lie (a lie is “lozh” in Russian, you call a liar “lzhets”). As Russian saying has it, the God marks scum.
  243. Anonymous[395] • Disclaimer says:

    Excellent. More, more!

  244. @Talha

    considered “faking it” because of the estrangement.
     
    Well, like I said..."but, if it works…"

    It's still dorky though from where I'm standing and seems a bit cowardly in not standing up to your convictions. I couldn't imagine faking a religion I didn't believe in unless they were going to put a bullet in my head - and even then I might think of taking the more commendable road of refusing to play along.

    The West was pagan, then Christian, then post-Christian and now "plays one on TV" is being suggested. I guess we'll see if this kind of cognitive dissonance will fly in the long run.

    I can tell you that in our tradition; insincerely pretending to be a Muslim (which is called a munafiq) for the worldly benefits it accrues is actually the worst form of disbelief...
    "Indeed, the hypocrites (munafiqun) will be in the lowest depths of the Fire - and never will you find for them a helper." (4:145)

    But everyone's got their own rules to play by.

    Peace.

    seems a bit cowardly in not standing up to your convictions.

    You are selling me a bit short, Talha. Also, you are proposing that your religious convictions are the ultimate value.

    I’m not thinking of an Elmer Gantry scenario. I just mean that I could conform to my community’s religious views because I value my community, not because of religious belief.

    I don’t see any conflict between the thrust of AK’s writings and an appreciation of and a place for the Russian Orthodox Church.

    In addition, the take-away from the whole of your comments that I have is that the common folk need to listen to and take their lead from the ulema and not think about it too much for themselves. That might work for you in the old country but that horse has left the barn here.

    • Replies: @Talha

    I could conform to my community’s religious views because I value my community
     
    I get your drift; go along to get along. I mean, even within my extended family - I wouldn't be surprised if some of my cousins are closet atheists (they certainly make certain obtuse comments hinting at it when I'm around - probably because I'm the guy with the fist-length beard, but I don't ever press them). But yeah, they like my Mom's biryani and don't want that gravy-train to end.

    I don’t see any conflict between the thrust of AK’s writings and an appreciation of and a place for the Russian Orthodox Church.
     
    Hmmmm...wonder what the Church thinks about the Singularity?

    common folk need to listen to and take their lead from the ulema and not think about it too much for themselves
     
    Then I don't think you've understood what I'm saying; actually, the more you think about the subject (which is what I encourage Muslims to do), the more you realize the best way to approach a body of knowledge as important as sacred law is through people who have spent their lives dedicated to its study. I feel the same exact way about something like medicine or who runs nuclear plants.

    I used to be a Salafi - way back in the day when I thought all you needed was a translation of the Qur'an and Sahih Muslim & Bukhari to figure out the religion. Then I actually started to study it seriously and realized how dangerous the concept of "sola scriptura" is in the hands of ignorant young men full of testosterone and ego. And ever since then, everything I have read about in the news or trends that I have seen have only further strengthened my conviction.

    That might work for you in the old country but that horse has left the barn here.
     
    Well let's hope not when it comes to Muslims. I like living life without worrying that someone is going to 'laaau-Akbaar me with a truck on my way to get ice cream. Maybe you got the sweet moves though.

    Peace.
  245. @Andrei Martyanov

    Right in that video you posted.
     
    He "skipped" the most crucial phrase in his "transcript". With his Idol effectively appealing to the US "Must you wait until..." But, of course, it is expected from him. He read very little (which idolizing Solzh testifies to) in his life and doesn't understand the difference between incitement and merely narrative. Start your stopwatch to mark him going into his MO of obfuscation, lies and ignoring obvious.

    Once again, where exactly is the call to attack – let alone nuke – the USSR? As in, Solzhenitsyn explicitly saying that (as opposed to sovoks projecting it).

    Second, given your claims, I took the trouble of locating the the entire speech on the Internet.

    And the results were hilarious. The video is even more blatantly propagandistic than I thought.

    1. It dishonestly splices together two very separate parts of the speech [highlighted in bold] to give the impression (to sovoks, not normal people) that Solzhenitsyn was calling on the US to nuke the USSR.

    2. Solzhenitsyn said the exact opposite of what sovoks claim he said: “After my first address, as always, there were some superficial comments in the newspapers which did not really get to the essence. One of them was as follows: that I came here with an appeal to the United States to liberate us from communism. Anyone who has at all followed what I have said and written these many years; first in the Soviet Union and now in the West; will know that I’ve always said the exact opposite. I have appealed to my own countrymen – those whose courage has failed at difficult moments, and who have looked imploringly to the West – and urged them: “Don’t wait for assistance, and don’t ask for it; we must stand on our own feet. The West has enough troubles without us. If they support us, many thanks. But to ask for it, to appeal for it – never.

    3. Just a note that sovoks have trawled all of Solzhenitsyn’s work and speeches for evidence of his Russophobia. And this stitched-up crap is apparently one of the most damning examples they have found. LOL.

    At one time there was no comparison between the strength of the USSR and yours. Then it became equal to yours. Now, as all recognize, it is becoming superior to yours. Perhaps today the ratio is just greater than equal, but soon it will be 2 to 1 , then 3 to 1. Finally it will be 5 to 1.

    I’m not a specialist in this area, and you’re not specialists either, I suppose, but this can hardly be accidental. I think that if the armaments they had before were enough, they would not have driven things further. There must be some reason for it. With such a nuclear superiority it will be possible to block the use of your weapons, and on some unlucky morning they will declare: “Attention. We’re marching our troops to Europe, and if you make a move, we will annihilate you.” And this ratio of 3 to 1, or 5 to 1 will have its effect: you will not make a move. Indeed, theoreticians will be found to say, “If only we can have that blessed silence . . .”

    To make a comparison with chess, this is like two players who are sitting at a chess board, one of whom has a tremendously high opinion of himself and a rather low opinion of his opponent. He thinks that he will, of course, outplay his opponent. He thinks he is so clever, so calculating, so inventive, that he will certainly win. He sits there, he calculates his moves. With these two knights he will make four forks. He can hardly wait for his opponent to move. He’s squirming on his chair out of happiness. He takes off his glasses, wipes them, and puts them back on again. He doesn’t even admit the possibility that his opponent may be more clever. He doesn’t even see that his pawns are being taken one after the other and that his castle is under threat. It all seems to him.. “Aha, that’s what we’ll do. We’ll set Moscow, Peking, Pyongyang, Hanoi one against the other.”

    But what a joke! No one will do any such thing! In the meantime, you’ve been outplayed in West Berlin; you’ve been very skillfully outplayed in Portugal. In the Near East you’re being outplayed. One shouldn’t have such a low opinion of one’s opponent.

    … [many other things] …

    I understand, I sense that you’re tired. You’re fatigued, but you have not yet really suffered the terrible trials of the 20th century which have rained down on the old continent. You’re tired, but not as tired as we are, lying crushed to the ground for 60 years. You’re tired, but the Communists who want to destroy your system aren’t tired; they’re not tired at all.
    I understand that this is the most unfavorable time to come to this country and to make this sort of address. But if it were a favorable time, if it were an appropriate time, there wouldn’t be any need for me to speak.

    Precisely because this is the worst possible time I have come to tell you about our experience over there. If our experience in the East could flow over to you by itself, it wouldn’t be necessary for me to assume the unpleasant and inappropriate role of orator. I am a writer, and I would prefer to sit and write books. But a concentration of world evil, of hatred for humanity is taking place and it is fully determined to destroy your society. Must you wait until it comes with a crowbar to break through your borders, until the young men of America have to fall defending the borders of their continent?

    After my first address, as always, there were some superficial comments in the newspapers which did not really get to the essence. One of them was as follows: that I came here with an appeal to the United States to liberate us from communism. Anyone who has at all followed what I have said and written these many years; first in the Soviet Union and now in the West; will know that I’ve always said the exact opposite. I have appealed to my own countrymen – those whose courage has failed at difficult moments, and who have looked imploringly to the West – and urged them: “Don’t wait for assistance, and don’t ask for it; we must stand on our own feet. The West has enough troubles without us. If they support us, many thanks. But to ask for it, to appeal for it – never.”

    I said the last time that two processes are occurring in the world today. One is a process of spiritual liberation in the USSR and in the other Communist countries.

    The second is the assistance being extended by the West to the Communist rulers, a process of concessions, of detente, of yielding whole countries.

    And I only said: “‘Remember, we have to pull ourselves up – but if you defend us you also defend your own future.” We are slaves there from birth. We are born slaves. I’m not young anymore, and I myself was born a slave; this is even more true for those who are younger. We are slaves, but we are striving for freedom. You, however, were born free. If so, then why do you help our slave owners?

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    Once again, where exactly is the call to attack – let alone nuke – the USSR? As in, Solzhenitsyn explicitly saying that (as opposed to sovoks projecting it).
     
    Karlin, you are an article. Yes, video, of course, lies. The sounds and visual spectrum we are experiencing are all in our imagination. Call Youtube urgently. One liar admires the other, classic.
    , @Anonymous
    I don’t understand Russian but if that interpreter is accurate it does seem Solzhenitsyn was advocating that the USSR has to be stopped or this inexorable increase in their nukes will lead to an actual offensive action against the West. He doesn’t actually call for the U.S. to nuke the USSR but implies it. Kind of like when a Western politician says, “Are we just going to sit back and allow Assad to gas his own population?”, he or she is really saying to bomb Assad and the Syrian gov’t/military and get a regime change.
    , @utu
    You are dealing with psychological phenomena here. Bringing up facts changes nothing. They are impervious to facts and arguments.
  246. @German_reader

    Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.
     
    Could you elaborate a bit on the contrast?

    Could you elaborate a bit on the contrast?

    Just to give you one insight, Shalamov, from who Solzh stole (It is documented and Shalamov warned about him willing to steal) half of GULAG Archipelago, pointed out that Solzhenitsyn describes cats in his camps–this is a lie. Cats and dogs didn’t exist in and around camps since they were eaten long ago, especially that was true in late 1930s–worst times in GULAG. Solzhentsyn was never subjected to horrors he literally stole from Shalamov, who did go through an enormous ordeal in his life.

    • Replies: @German_reader
    That's really interesting, thanks.
    I know very little about Shalamov (don't know really much Solzhenitsyn either tbh), my impression is he's not that well-known in Western countries (though that may have changed somewhat in recent years, I've certainly seen him mentioned in German/Swiss newspapers). It seems to me that he was politically quite different from Solzhenitsyn (if I understand correctly he was originally arrested for left-wing oppositionism), does this relate to present-day political fault lines among Russians in some way?
    , @for-the-record
    It is documented and Shalamov warned about him willing to steal) half of GULAG Archipelago

    Source please.
  247. @Anatoly Karlin
    Once again, where exactly is the call to attack - let alone nuke - the USSR? As in, Solzhenitsyn explicitly saying that (as opposed to sovoks projecting it).

    Second, given your claims, I took the trouble of locating the the entire speech on the Internet.

    And the results were hilarious. The video is even more blatantly propagandistic than I thought.

    1. It dishonestly splices together two very separate parts of the speech [highlighted in bold] to give the impression (to sovoks, not normal people) that Solzhenitsyn was calling on the US to nuke the USSR.

    2. Solzhenitsyn said the exact opposite of what sovoks claim he said: "After my first address, as always, there were some superficial comments in the newspapers which did not really get to the essence. One of them was as follows: that I came here with an appeal to the United States to liberate us from communism. Anyone who has at all followed what I have said and written these many years; first in the Soviet Union and now in the West; will know that I've always said the exact opposite. I have appealed to my own countrymen - those whose courage has failed at difficult moments, and who have looked imploringly to the West - and urged them: "Don't wait for assistance, and don't ask for it; we must stand on our own feet. The West has enough troubles without us. If they support us, many thanks. But to ask for it, to appeal for it - never."

    3. Just a note that sovoks have trawled all of Solzhenitsyn's work and speeches for evidence of his Russophobia. And this stitched-up crap is apparently one of the most damning examples they have found. LOL.

    At one time there was no comparison between the strength of the USSR and yours. Then it became equal to yours. Now, as all recognize, it is becoming superior to yours. Perhaps today the ratio is just greater than equal, but soon it will be 2 to 1 , then 3 to 1. Finally it will be 5 to 1.

    I'm not a specialist in this area, and you're not specialists either, I suppose, but this can hardly be accidental. I think that if the armaments they had before were enough, they would not have driven things further. There must be some reason for it. With such a nuclear superiority it will be possible to block the use of your weapons, and on some unlucky morning they will declare: "Attention. We're marching our troops to Europe, and if you make a move, we will annihilate you." And this ratio of 3 to 1, or 5 to 1 will have its effect: you will not make a move. Indeed, theoreticians will be found to say, "If only we can have that blessed silence . . ."

    To make a comparison with chess, this is like two players who are sitting at a chess board, one of whom has a tremendously high opinion of himself and a rather low opinion of his opponent. He thinks that he will, of course, outplay his opponent. He thinks he is so clever, so calculating, so inventive, that he will certainly win. He sits there, he calculates his moves. With these two knights he will make four forks. He can hardly wait for his opponent to move. He's squirming on his chair out of happiness. He takes off his glasses, wipes them, and puts them back on again. He doesn't even admit the possibility that his opponent may be more clever. He doesn't even see that his pawns are being taken one after the other and that his castle is under threat. It all seems to him.. "Aha, that's what we'll do. We'll set Moscow, Peking, Pyongyang, Hanoi one against the other."

    But what a joke! No one will do any such thing! In the meantime, you've been outplayed in West Berlin; you've been very skillfully outplayed in Portugal. In the Near East you're being outplayed. One shouldn't have such a low opinion of one's opponent.

    ... [many other things] ...

    I understand, I sense that you're tired. You're fatigued, but you have not yet really suffered the terrible trials of the 20th century which have rained down on the old continent. You're tired, but not as tired as we are, lying crushed to the ground for 60 years. You're tired, but the Communists who want to destroy your system aren't tired; they're not tired at all.
    I understand that this is the most unfavorable time to come to this country and to make this sort of address. But if it were a favorable time, if it were an appropriate time, there wouldn't be any need for me to speak.

    Precisely because this is the worst possible time I have come to tell you about our experience over there. If our experience in the East could flow over to you by itself, it wouldn't be necessary for me to assume the unpleasant and inappropriate role of orator. I am a writer, and I would prefer to sit and write books. But a concentration of world evil, of hatred for humanity is taking place and it is fully determined to destroy your society. Must you wait until it comes with a crowbar to break through your borders, until the young men of America have to fall defending the borders of their continent?

    After my first address, as always, there were some superficial comments in the newspapers which did not really get to the essence. One of them was as follows: that I came here with an appeal to the United States to liberate us from communism. Anyone who has at all followed what I have said and written these many years; first in the Soviet Union and now in the West; will know that I've always said the exact opposite. I have appealed to my own countrymen - those whose courage has failed at difficult moments, and who have looked imploringly to the West - and urged them: "Don't wait for assistance, and don't ask for it; we must stand on our own feet. The West has enough troubles without us. If they support us, many thanks. But to ask for it, to appeal for it - never."

    I said the last time that two processes are occurring in the world today. One is a process of spiritual liberation in the USSR and in the other Communist countries.

    The second is the assistance being extended by the West to the Communist rulers, a process of concessions, of detente, of yielding whole countries.

    And I only said: "'Remember, we have to pull ourselves up - but if you defend us you also defend your own future." We are slaves there from birth. We are born slaves. I'm not young anymore, and I myself was born a slave; this is even more true for those who are younger. We are slaves, but we are striving for freedom. You, however, were born free. If so, then why do you help our slave owners?
     

    Once again, where exactly is the call to attack – let alone nuke – the USSR? As in, Solzhenitsyn explicitly saying that (as opposed to sovoks projecting it).

    Karlin, you are an article. Yes, video, of course, lies. The sounds and visual spectrum we are experiencing are all in our imagination. Call Youtube urgently. One liar admires the other, classic.

    • Replies: @iffen
    You are not a reliable source.
    , @utu
    With this comment you showed that you are pos a bad loser. Karlin clearly demonstrated that you believe in some made up fantasy for reasons unknown. Yes, unknown, because you are intelligent enough to be able to recognize when you are in error. Yet in this case you refuse to correct it. That's why I call you pos because I had higher expectations form you. GFY. You will be considered as pos from now on.
  248. @Andrei Martyanov

    Once again, where exactly is the call to attack – let alone nuke – the USSR? As in, Solzhenitsyn explicitly saying that (as opposed to sovoks projecting it).
     
    Karlin, you are an article. Yes, video, of course, lies. The sounds and visual spectrum we are experiencing are all in our imagination. Call Youtube urgently. One liar admires the other, classic.

    You are not a reliable source.

  249. @Andrei Martyanov

    Could you elaborate a bit on the contrast?
     
    Just to give you one insight, Shalamov, from who Solzh stole (It is documented and Shalamov warned about him willing to steal) half of GULAG Archipelago, pointed out that Solzhenitsyn describes cats in his camps--this is a lie. Cats and dogs didn't exist in and around camps since they were eaten long ago, especially that was true in late 1930s--worst times in GULAG. Solzhentsyn was never subjected to horrors he literally stole from Shalamov, who did go through an enormous ordeal in his life.

    That’s really interesting, thanks.
    I know very little about Shalamov (don’t know really much Solzhenitsyn either tbh), my impression is he’s not that well-known in Western countries (though that may have changed somewhat in recent years, I’ve certainly seen him mentioned in German/Swiss newspapers). It seems to me that he was politically quite different from Solzhenitsyn (if I understand correctly he was originally arrested for left-wing oppositionism), does this relate to present-day political fault lines among Russians in some way?

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    It seems to me that he was politically quite different from Solzhenitsyn (if I understand correctly he was originally arrested for left-wing oppositionism
     
    Yes, he left this note in his diaries: "No bitch from "progressive humanity" should be allowed near my archive. I forbid writer Solzhenitsyn and all those having thoughts similar to his have acquaintance with my archive." He and Solzhenitsyn were opposites of political "spectrum", if one may say so, albeit to consider Solzhenitsyn as a "realist" in any aspect of politics, other than self-serving opportunist, is impossible for anyone even with rudimentary knowledge of Russia's history and literature. Shalamov also highly readable, if not terrifying, in his almost detached documentary style which puts Kolyma Stories in the league of its own in all so called GULAG (lagernaya literatura).

    does this relate to present-day political fault lines among Russians in some way?
     
    Not really and that's what makes Karlin's "posts" so detached from Russia's realities: political, economic, cultural, not to speak of geopolitical and military. Such as this propagation of a second-rate "thinker" Kholmogorov, who is nothing more than media-manipulator. As per Solzhenitsyn--local ideological so called "anti-Sovetchiks" (many of them--genuine Russophobes) will continue to ignore an embarrassing ignoring of Solzhenitsyn's death and funeral (barely attended in accordance to reports of several major Russian TV networks in 2008) by overwhelming majority of Russians. So much for "prophet" and self-proclaimed "consciousness of Russia". But Solzh got unlucky, archives were open and real historians emerged exactly the time he got back to Russia after missing on the whole two generations of Russians who do not really care about his fantasies. If not for Putin he would have been completely excluded from Russia's public schools literature curriculum, maybe with the exception of Matrenin Dvor.
  250. @Andrei Martyanov

    You also have a cranky side to you, in addition to not successfully refuting anything that I said.
     
    I hope you are competent enough to understand refutations on this matter and since we at it, here is Krivosheev, make your own conclusion.

    https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-6SNDmtJqpB4/WdOVSYJaFXI/AAAAAAAABKw/_0KjfXayF2U9ViH1mStCJD_xRcovKz0oACLcBGAs/s1600/WWI.jpg

    Here is WW I at a glance in crucial military hardware categories. And what is cranky side? Putting actual facts and numbers forth is a "cranky side"?

    Max Hastings notes that if WW I was fought in 1916, as opposed to 1914, the outcome on the eastern front and Russia’s fate might’ve been very different. He’s not alone in that belief.

    Russia wasn’t prepared to launch the offensive it did in the earlier part of WW I. That move which helped France was detrimental to Russia. For Russia, that attack led to decreased morale and Red agitation. Even though Russia’s armaments situation is said to have improved by 1917, its morale reached a low point for the reasons described. If the first part of this last set of points is under dispute, it should be followed up on in great detail.

    We know about Lenin’s dealing with the Germans, including German support for the Reds. A matter related to the character in Pasternak’s Dr. Zhivago, who is portrayed as seeking to subvert Russia’s WW I effort.

    Stalin likely had Russia’s WW I experience in mind, when he showed a reluctance to not initially confront Germany – even though he was warned of an impending German attack.

    • Replies: @German_reader

    Max Hastings notes that if WW I was fought in 1916, as opposed to 1914, the outcome on the eastern front and Russia’s fate might’ve been very different. He’s not alone in that belief.
     
    Max Hastings is a journalist, his opinion isn't worth much.
    I don't quite get your point...is it that war in 1914 was a disastrous idea for Russia?
    , @Andrei Martyanov

    Stalin likely had Russia’s WW I experience in mind, when he showed a reluctance to not initially confront Germany – even though he was warned of an impending German attack.
     
    It has nothing to do with his WW I experience but everything to do with what he stated in his February 4, 1931 piece. Stalin: “We are 50 or 100 years behind the advanced countries. We must make good this distance in 10 years. Either we do it, or we shall go under". He was buying time to the very end. Both purges (albeit they were overemphasized in the West) and institutional transformation of the Red Army played a huge role in him not to confront Germany.

    We know about Lenin’s dealing with the Germans, including German support for the Reds. A matter related to the character in Pasternak’s Dr. Zhivago, who is portrayed as seeking to subvert Russia’s WW I effort.
     
    Another largely urban legend popular in the West and debunked by none other than Sergo Beria in his memoirs, who unlike all Western "historians", did have access to the top of Soviet intelligence. Using втёмную (useful idiot) is also completely disregarded by most (not all) Russia "experts" in the West who are not experts and mostly are ideologues and propagandists. This is not to mention (oh, the irony) same very Solzhenitsyn from his Russian Question in the End of XX Century Facing, where, amidst his utter a-historical delirium, even he was forced to admit that Bolsheviks "in 1917 simply lifted political power from the ground, where it was laying not needed to anyone" (the quote close to original). Obviously admitting the fact , born out by overwhelming empirical and academic evidence, that Tsarist Russia was simply not-equipped, for all heroism and sometimes operational brilliance of its soldiers and officers, to face modern Germany (among others) lagging behind nt not in times, but order of magnitude in main war materiel production, as well as literacy or, rather, illiteracy of own army, is beyond the limits of Western "historiography". All that way before any "Reds" started to "sabotage" anything. Obviously a disastrous role of February conspirators such as Guchkov, Milukov, just to name a few, is always ignored. In the end, it seems, simplest dyadic relation of military potentials is beyond the mathematical grasp of all those "specialists" and "strategists". As one can easily hear from Solzhenitsyn's utter military nuclear delirium in his passionate "warning" to ever humanitarian West.
  251. @Mikhail
    Max Hastings notes that if WW I was fought in 1916, as opposed to 1914, the outcome on the eastern front and Russia's fate might've been very different. He's not alone in that belief.

    Russia wasn't prepared to launch the offensive it did in the earlier part of WW I. That move which helped France was detrimental to Russia. For Russia, that attack led to decreased morale and Red agitation. Even though Russia's armaments situation is said to have improved by 1917, its morale reached a low point for the reasons described. If the first part of this last set of points is under dispute, it should be followed up on in great detail.

    We know about Lenin's dealing with the Germans, including German support for the Reds. A matter related to the character in Pasternak's Dr. Zhivago, who is portrayed as seeking to subvert Russia's WW I effort.

    Stalin likely had Russia's WW I experience in mind, when he showed a reluctance to not initially confront Germany - even though he was warned of an impending German attack.

    Max Hastings notes that if WW I was fought in 1916, as opposed to 1914, the outcome on the eastern front and Russia’s fate might’ve been very different. He’s not alone in that belief.

    Max Hastings is a journalist, his opinion isn’t worth much.
    I don’t quite get your point…is it that war in 1914 was a disastrous idea for Russia?

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    That's your opinion of Max Hastings, who I don't always agree with.

    The title of "historian" doesn't necessarily lead to accurate assessments. Likewise, some without that designation can make cogent points.

    Organized academia has definite fault lines:

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2017/12/12/countering-anti-russian-propaganda.html

    Not the aforementioned historian Thomas Weber.

    Russia was undergoing a modern military expansion. No WW I in 1914 and 1915, would've likely put Russia in a stronger position.
  252. Anon[198] • Disclaimer says:
    @Joe Levantine
    The masses are always manipulated by the propaganda of the state. The demonisation of the enemy is an art that was perfected since WWI. The treaty of Westphalia which had made wars a business that is strictly conducted between European armies was trashed when the British confiscated the wealth of the Germans who had deposited their money in British banks. The stories about German soldiers killing and maiming babies are very well documented. Unfortunately, the people were and still are the sheeple.

    I have no objection to make, but I do not think the most skillful propaganda would have achieved the result it did if not for the invasion of Belgium and the stupid muttering about a “scrap of paper” which shocked normal Brits into believing the Germans capable of all the horrible crimes of which they were accused. Of course that’s only an opinion.

  253. @iffen
    It seems funny to have a nation supporting Christianity as an institution and nobody goes to church.

    Problem. Question. Solution.

    LARPing religion seems dorky

    Not really. You might remember from my comments that I have said that I have considered “faking it” because of the estrangement.

    Not really. You might remember from my comments that I have said that I have considered “faking it” because of the estrangement.

    Christ said “the truth will set you free” and iffen amended it only slightly to “the white lie will set you free”.

    • Replies: @iffen
    iffen amended it only slightly to “the white lie will set you free”.

    iffen has observed that the truth will set you free from many friends.
  254. Anonymous[196] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    Once again, where exactly is the call to attack - let alone nuke - the USSR? As in, Solzhenitsyn explicitly saying that (as opposed to sovoks projecting it).

    Second, given your claims, I took the trouble of locating the the entire speech on the Internet.

    And the results were hilarious. The video is even more blatantly propagandistic than I thought.

    1. It dishonestly splices together two very separate parts of the speech [highlighted in bold] to give the impression (to sovoks, not normal people) that Solzhenitsyn was calling on the US to nuke the USSR.

    2. Solzhenitsyn said the exact opposite of what sovoks claim he said: "After my first address, as always, there were some superficial comments in the newspapers which did not really get to the essence. One of them was as follows: that I came here with an appeal to the United States to liberate us from communism. Anyone who has at all followed what I have said and written these many years; first in the Soviet Union and now in the West; will know that I've always said the exact opposite. I have appealed to my own countrymen - those whose courage has failed at difficult moments, and who have looked imploringly to the West - and urged them: "Don't wait for assistance, and don't ask for it; we must stand on our own feet. The West has enough troubles without us. If they support us, many thanks. But to ask for it, to appeal for it - never."

    3. Just a note that sovoks have trawled all of Solzhenitsyn's work and speeches for evidence of his Russophobia. And this stitched-up crap is apparently one of the most damning examples they have found. LOL.

    At one time there was no comparison between the strength of the USSR and yours. Then it became equal to yours. Now, as all recognize, it is becoming superior to yours. Perhaps today the ratio is just greater than equal, but soon it will be 2 to 1 , then 3 to 1. Finally it will be 5 to 1.

    I'm not a specialist in this area, and you're not specialists either, I suppose, but this can hardly be accidental. I think that if the armaments they had before were enough, they would not have driven things further. There must be some reason for it. With such a nuclear superiority it will be possible to block the use of your weapons, and on some unlucky morning they will declare: "Attention. We're marching our troops to Europe, and if you make a move, we will annihilate you." And this ratio of 3 to 1, or 5 to 1 will have its effect: you will not make a move. Indeed, theoreticians will be found to say, "If only we can have that blessed silence . . ."

    To make a comparison with chess, this is like two players who are sitting at a chess board, one of whom has a tremendously high opinion of himself and a rather low opinion of his opponent. He thinks that he will, of course, outplay his opponent. He thinks he is so clever, so calculating, so inventive, that he will certainly win. He sits there, he calculates his moves. With these two knights he will make four forks. He can hardly wait for his opponent to move. He's squirming on his chair out of happiness. He takes off his glasses, wipes them, and puts them back on again. He doesn't even admit the possibility that his opponent may be more clever. He doesn't even see that his pawns are being taken one after the other and that his castle is under threat. It all seems to him.. "Aha, that's what we'll do. We'll set Moscow, Peking, Pyongyang, Hanoi one against the other."

    But what a joke! No one will do any such thing! In the meantime, you've been outplayed in West Berlin; you've been very skillfully outplayed in Portugal. In the Near East you're being outplayed. One shouldn't have such a low opinion of one's opponent.

    ... [many other things] ...

    I understand, I sense that you're tired. You're fatigued, but you have not yet really suffered the terrible trials of the 20th century which have rained down on the old continent. You're tired, but not as tired as we are, lying crushed to the ground for 60 years. You're tired, but the Communists who want to destroy your system aren't tired; they're not tired at all.
    I understand that this is the most unfavorable time to come to this country and to make this sort of address. But if it were a favorable time, if it were an appropriate time, there wouldn't be any need for me to speak.

    Precisely because this is the worst possible time I have come to tell you about our experience over there. If our experience in the East could flow over to you by itself, it wouldn't be necessary for me to assume the unpleasant and inappropriate role of orator. I am a writer, and I would prefer to sit and write books. But a concentration of world evil, of hatred for humanity is taking place and it is fully determined to destroy your society. Must you wait until it comes with a crowbar to break through your borders, until the young men of America have to fall defending the borders of their continent?

    After my first address, as always, there were some superficial comments in the newspapers which did not really get to the essence. One of them was as follows: that I came here with an appeal to the United States to liberate us from communism. Anyone who has at all followed what I have said and written these many years; first in the Soviet Union and now in the West; will know that I've always said the exact opposite. I have appealed to my own countrymen - those whose courage has failed at difficult moments, and who have looked imploringly to the West - and urged them: "Don't wait for assistance, and don't ask for it; we must stand on our own feet. The West has enough troubles without us. If they support us, many thanks. But to ask for it, to appeal for it - never."

    I said the last time that two processes are occurring in the world today. One is a process of spiritual liberation in the USSR and in the other Communist countries.

    The second is the assistance being extended by the West to the Communist rulers, a process of concessions, of detente, of yielding whole countries.

    And I only said: "'Remember, we have to pull ourselves up - but if you defend us you also defend your own future." We are slaves there from birth. We are born slaves. I'm not young anymore, and I myself was born a slave; this is even more true for those who are younger. We are slaves, but we are striving for freedom. You, however, were born free. If so, then why do you help our slave owners?
     

    I don’t understand Russian but if that interpreter is accurate it does seem Solzhenitsyn was advocating that the USSR has to be stopped or this inexorable increase in their nukes will lead to an actual offensive action against the West. He doesn’t actually call for the U.S. to nuke the USSR but implies it. Kind of like when a Western politician says, “Are we just going to sit back and allow Assad to gas his own population?”, he or she is really saying to bomb Assad and the Syrian gov’t/military and get a regime change.

    • Replies: @German_reader
    Well yes, but as AK has pointed out, the two sections cited in that video clip don't really belong together.
    From today's perspective it looks pretty alarmist though, with the differences and tensions between different communist states (most notably the Soviet Union and China) downplayed and the fiction of a global communist threat resurrected, as if it still was 1950. That wasn't an accurate perception of reality even at the time of the speech.
    , @Mike P

    I don’t understand Russian but if that interpreter is accurate it does seem Solzhenitsyn was advocating that the USSR has to be stopped or this inexorable increase in their nukes will lead to an actual offensive action against the West. He doesn’t actually call for the U.S. to nuke the USSR but implies it.
     
    That simply isn't true. He might simply have meant that the West should improve its defences - use its superior economic strength to one-up the Russian military might. In fact, that is what I was thinking during the cold war - if the Russians are indeed as strong as everyone was saying and could push us into the Atlantic, why don't we simply strengthen our defences to make sure they won't? Even at the height of the cold war, most Western European armies were just war museums on wheels. Just threatening first use of nukes and otherwise hoping for the best never made any sense to me.
  255. @AnonFromTN
    I find this argument pointless. They are very different. However, both Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky are so close to the top of world literature, that it makes no difference. I’d put Bulgakov and possibly Sholokhov (for “Quietly Flows the Don”) in the same league.

    Getting back to this article, Solzhenitsyn is nowhere near either of them. He is way below even the second-tier Russian writers (like Gogol), in my view even below the third tier (say, Turgenev, who was mocked by Dostoyevsky). When I was younger and dumber I read a lot of Solzhenitsyn’s stuff. The only thing I really liked is “One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich”, but even compared to that Shalamov’s description of camps is better. Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.

    I’ll just state my opinion (after all, literary discussion is not what this thread is about).

    However, both Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky are so close to the top of world literature, that it makes no difference. I’d put Bulgakov and possibly Sholokhov (for “Quietly Flows the Don”) in the same league.

    Bulgakov & Sholokhov are good writers, but they’re not even close. The only 20th C writer who belongs to the “supreme” category is Marcel Proust. I was glad to see that Forster and George Steiner were of the same opinion.

    Getting back to this article, Solzhenitsyn is nowhere near either of them. He is way below even the second-tier Russian writers (like Gogol), in my view even below the third tier (say, Turgenev, who was mocked by Dostoyevsky).

    These things are hard to compare. Solzhenitsyn is an impressive writer in the vein of 19th C tradition, in his two novels (The First Circle, Cancer Ward)- vivid characterization, love story, satire etc., despite occasional clumsiness. Of course, he is not a modernist (high or post-) & he’s plainly inferior to great 20th C authors like Mann or Conrad. Just, his work remains highly readable & will be considered, I think, close to realist 20th C novelists like Martin Du Gard.

    TGA is a political pamphlet containing gems, but as a whole- I’ve read it long time ago- it is formless & artless. Most critics argue about authenticity of this or that detail. In the long run, this seems to be of secondary importance.

    Solzhenitsyn as a political writer (or “prophet”) is not great; but, he’s rather good as a classical novelist.

    The only thing I really liked is “One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich”, but even compared to that Shalamov’s description of camps is better. Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.

    Shalamov’s “Kolyma Tales” seem to me greater achievement in the field of “ccamp literature”, but Solzhenitsyn has more to offer in his novels.

    Documentary value is not the issue here.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    Proust bores me to death. I have to confess, though, I don’t know enough French to read the original. If I had to name writers of the highest caliber in the twentieth century, I’d name Joyce and Faulkner. Again, that may be because I read the originals, in English I have no trouble reading anything, from La Morte d’Arhtur to modern stuff. However, I liked Thomas Mann, even though I don’t read German.

    Shalamov is not just documentary, his stories are exquisitely written. Another thing that irks me in Solzhenitsyn is that he attempts to be like Tolstoy (especially noticeable in “August 2014”; I was put off by that and did not read the other books in that series), reminding me of the French story about a frog that tried to become as large as a bull.
    , @Andrei Martyanov

    Documentary value is not the issue here.
     
    It IS THE issue, since GULAG Archipelago, despite being largely work of fiction, with always small font clarification underneath main title which reads:"the experience in fictional study", was used in the West as a historic document. I am not talking about Solzhenitsyn's direct falsification of the history of WW II. Reference to Solzhenitsyn as some kind of "authority", of which he never was, either on GULAG, Russian history,military history, nuclear weapons, for crying out loud, enough to remember Pipes' 1977 delirious essay on nuclear war, is still prevalent in the West and is still a part of a huge ideological game already against modern day Russia. Neocon ideological Parnassus is very much still in love with Solzhenitsyn when it suites them.
  256. @iffen
    seems a bit cowardly in not standing up to your convictions.

    You are selling me a bit short, Talha. Also, you are proposing that your religious convictions are the ultimate value.

    I’m not thinking of an Elmer Gantry scenario. I just mean that I could conform to my community’s religious views because I value my community, not because of religious belief.

    I don’t see any conflict between the thrust of AK’s writings and an appreciation of and a place for the Russian Orthodox Church.

    In addition, the take-away from the whole of your comments that I have is that the common folk need to listen to and take their lead from the ulema and not think about it too much for themselves. That might work for you in the old country but that horse has left the barn here.

    I could conform to my community’s religious views because I value my community

    I get your drift; go along to get along. I mean, even within my extended family – I wouldn’t be surprised if some of my cousins are closet atheists (they certainly make certain obtuse comments hinting at it when I’m around – probably because I’m the guy with the fist-length beard, but I don’t ever press them). But yeah, they like my Mom’s biryani and don’t want that gravy-train to end.

    I don’t see any conflict between the thrust of AK’s writings and an appreciation of and a place for the Russian Orthodox Church.

    Hmmmm…wonder what the Church thinks about the Singularity?

    common folk need to listen to and take their lead from the ulema and not think about it too much for themselves

    Then I don’t think you’ve understood what I’m saying; actually, the more you think about the subject (which is what I encourage Muslims to do), the more you realize the best way to approach a body of knowledge as important as sacred law is through people who have spent their lives dedicated to its study. I feel the same exact way about something like medicine or who runs nuclear plants.

    I used to be a Salafi – way back in the day when I thought all you needed was a translation of the Qur’an and Sahih Muslim & Bukhari to figure out the religion. Then I actually started to study it seriously and realized how dangerous the concept of “sola scriptura” is in the hands of ignorant young men full of testosterone and ego. And ever since then, everything I have read about in the news or trends that I have seen have only further strengthened my conviction.

    That might work for you in the old country but that horse has left the barn here.

    Well let’s hope not when it comes to Muslims. I like living life without worrying that someone is going to ‘laaau-Akbaar me with a truck on my way to get ice cream. Maybe you got the sweet moves though.

    Peace.

  257. @Anonymous
    I don’t understand Russian but if that interpreter is accurate it does seem Solzhenitsyn was advocating that the USSR has to be stopped or this inexorable increase in their nukes will lead to an actual offensive action against the West. He doesn’t actually call for the U.S. to nuke the USSR but implies it. Kind of like when a Western politician says, “Are we just going to sit back and allow Assad to gas his own population?”, he or she is really saying to bomb Assad and the Syrian gov’t/military and get a regime change.

    Well yes, but as AK has pointed out, the two sections cited in that video clip don’t really belong together.
    From today’s perspective it looks pretty alarmist though, with the differences and tensions between different communist states (most notably the Soviet Union and China) downplayed and the fiction of a global communist threat resurrected, as if it still was 1950. That wasn’t an accurate perception of reality even at the time of the speech.

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov
    What Karlin didn't point out, of course, that what Solzh was doing is called treason of own people and he was doing it for personal gain. But then again, Solzhentsyn always loved traitors, even proverbial fictional Ivan Denisovich was none other than deserter. Most here, of course, never read Alexandr Zinoviev, who, unlike Solzhenitsyn, was a scientist with the global name, who coined the phrase "We aimed at communism but hit Russia". But this concept is beyond the grasp of self-confident hipsters and public forums' "intellectuals". I, of course, omit here Solzh's peculiar "understanding" of nuclearism and nuclear parity with his "ratios" taken out of his most ridiculous fantasies.
  258. @German_reader

    Max Hastings notes that if WW I was fought in 1916, as opposed to 1914, the outcome on the eastern front and Russia’s fate might’ve been very different. He’s not alone in that belief.
     
    Max Hastings is a journalist, his opinion isn't worth much.
    I don't quite get your point...is it that war in 1914 was a disastrous idea for Russia?

    That’s your opinion of Max Hastings, who I don’t always agree with.

    The title of “historian” doesn’t necessarily lead to accurate assessments. Likewise, some without that designation can make cogent points.

    Organized academia has definite fault lines:

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2017/12/12/countering-anti-russian-propaganda.html

    Not the aforementioned historian Thomas Weber.

    Russia was undergoing a modern military expansion. No WW I in 1914 and 1915, would’ve likely put Russia in a stronger position.

    • Replies: @German_reader
    Well yes, Thomas Weber is a cretinous establishment propagandist (his book about Hitler is also supposedly very bad). But Max Hastings does propaganda as well imo.

    Russia was undergoing a modern military expansion. No WW I in 1914 and 1915, would’ve likely put Russia in a stronger position.
     
    Yes, but that's kind of a banal observation...I still don't really get your point. Yes, if the war had come a few years later, Russia would have been better prepared. But Russia's elites were deluded enough to stumble into war in 1914, so all those "what ifs?" don't really matter.
  259. @Andrei Martyanov

    Once again, where exactly is the call to attack – let alone nuke – the USSR? As in, Solzhenitsyn explicitly saying that (as opposed to sovoks projecting it).
     
    Karlin, you are an article. Yes, video, of course, lies. The sounds and visual spectrum we are experiencing are all in our imagination. Call Youtube urgently. One liar admires the other, classic.

    With this comment you showed that you are pos a bad loser. Karlin clearly demonstrated that you believe in some made up fantasy for reasons unknown. Yes, unknown, because you are intelligent enough to be able to recognize when you are in error. Yet in this case you refuse to correct it. That’s why I call you pos because I had higher expectations form you. GFY. You will be considered as pos from now on.

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    Yes, unknown, because you are intelligent enough to be able to recognize when you are in error
     
    Spare me your pathetic condescension. Call me a fool--from you it will be a compliment. If you need a Q-tip to clear your ears--get to the nearest grocery store. May help to hear what is on Youtube documentary.
  260. @AaronB

    As someone talks about religion, Indians, etc, I expected some reply that atman is not touched by such superficial things as society.
     
    I just wanted to make a comment about this - the very idea of Atman is that we are all part of the larger whole. We cannot help but be affected by the society and environment we live, and even the entire consciousness of the human race. We are not individual units.

    Of course, one must make some effort to free oneself from the negative influences of one's environment, and then contribute to reshaping it by personal example - not aggressive advocacy - and the very fact that one has achieved a higher viewpoint will send ripples throughout the the web of human consciousness. And what is this higher viewpoint? Simply that we are not individual units, but one with the universe. That you are me, and I am you. We interpenetrate.

    So the idea that Indian religion or philosophy encourages a lack of concern for society and other people is an absolute falsehood - it's essence is the recognition that we are not individual units but part of a larger web.

    You got it exactly backwards. As a subverter of the principle of unity and an advocate for atomistic materialism, I expect no less from you :)

    I am sure Epicurianism also does not advocate atomistic individualism with no social concern - no healthy philosophy can. I seem to remember something about Epicurianism praising friendship as the highest ideal and something about small groups of friends joining together in a garden...

    Their concept of your soul – atman – is not touched by anything that happens in life (let alone the particular arrangement of society in ‘so and so’ years), or even in future or past life, although it can believe itself to be, which is how you enter into samsara, become conditioned by karma etc.

    I am sure Epicurianism also does not advocate atomistic individualism with no social concern – no healthy philosophy can. I seem to remember something about Epicurianism praising friendship as the highest ideal and something about small groups of friends joining together in a garden…

    Epicurus and his followers were out of favour, and controversial in society of their time. His point is that happiness can be attained, with some few simple things – (you don’t need to wait around dreaming for utopia, or devaluing present people).

    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian

    Their concept of your soul – atman – is not touched by anything that happens in life (let alone the particular arrangement of society in ‘so and so’ years), or even in future or past life, although it can believe itself to be, which is how you enter into samsara, become conditioned by karma etc.
     
    True, that's why Western notions of Self vs psyche are more productive. Self is here inner guide, inspiration, inner God etc (Nous, Angel Christ, Daimon, Perfect Nature, Chaya/Yechida,...).

    If you have time to waste:



    https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51JD-fJ3dJL._SX317_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

    https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/31LkRCtgoVL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

    https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51Dv8oekbJL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

    https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/41YfVSSngdL._SX314_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

    Epicurus and his followers were out of favour, and controversial in society of their time. His point is that happiness can be attained, with some few simple things – (you don’t need to wait around dreaming for utopia, or devaluing present people).
     
    Epicurus was slandered by Stoics. But his limitations are obvious (as are theirs)- he is all about middle of the road & middle age. Just, as Blake has correctly pointed out, for some, roads of excess lead to palaces of wisdom. To hell with prudence.

    And, by the way, this has nothing to do with Solzhenitsyn...
    , @AaronB
    You are making some very basic mistakes.

    Atman is everything, the whole universe. Since there is no division, there is no hate, aggression, or greed, only love and compassion. That's the theory. This is not a selfish focus on personal happiness, but the realization that another person's unhappiness is your own unhappiness.

    The practical result of this is a serious attempt to help others realize Atman - since that is the true way to liberate others from suffering, and their suffering is your own. The modern Westerner, since he sees this philosophy does not advocate external works, assumes it is socially disinterested. Nothing can be further from the truth. This philosophy has an intense social concern, focused on inner liberation rather than outer comfort. The Hindu scriptures have an intense focus on social organization - except the purpose is to structure society to facilitate inner liberstion. The scriptures discuss the Kali Yuga - an age when society has disintegretaed , much like our own, and the moral and social conditions no longer favor inner liberation, and few people achieve.

    In practice, the life recommended in the Hindu scriptures depends on very specific social conditions - for instance, the practice of sanyasa, which everyone is expected to undertake later in life, depends on charity, and societal support for large numbers of mature men "dropping out" and no longer contributing economically. Previous Hindu life depends on strong g family and community so bonds - for instance, being supported while studying the scriptures.

    Hindu philosophy does not believe individual happiness is possible - since there is no individual. It's just that the goal is to assist everyone to achieve inner liberation - to the westerner, this seems like social disinterest.

    Hindu philosophy is what taught me so clearly that it is impossible to pursue individual happiness, so it's funny you're misunderstanding it so completely.

    As for Epicureans, they tried to create little mini-societies of good friends - friendship was the ideal. They did not for a second imagine happiness could be pursued individually. They merely despaired of the larger society, and took emergency measures. In any event, they proved not to be long-term viabl. They were replaced by a philosophy that placed communal happiness even more central stage, which lasted for more than a thousand years.

    The lessons are clear.

    Even religious hermits and solitary mediators in caves fe lt themselves connected to an invisible we of humanity, and that they were sending ripples out through the continuum.

    Face it, atomized individualism is a feature of no culture other than our own crumbling and dying modern one, which has proven non long-term viable.

    But you cannot accept that. And so you will die, unhappy.

  261. @Mikhail
    That's your opinion of Max Hastings, who I don't always agree with.

    The title of "historian" doesn't necessarily lead to accurate assessments. Likewise, some without that designation can make cogent points.

    Organized academia has definite fault lines:

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2017/12/12/countering-anti-russian-propaganda.html

    Not the aforementioned historian Thomas Weber.

    Russia was undergoing a modern military expansion. No WW I in 1914 and 1915, would've likely put Russia in a stronger position.

    Well yes, Thomas Weber is a cretinous establishment propagandist (his book about Hitler is also supposedly very bad). But Max Hastings does propaganda as well imo.

    Russia was undergoing a modern military expansion. No WW I in 1914 and 1915, would’ve likely put Russia in a stronger position.

    Yes, but that’s kind of a banal observation…I still don’t really get your point. Yes, if the war had come a few years later, Russia would have been better prepared. But Russia’s elites were deluded enough to stumble into war in 1914, so all those “what ifs?” don’t really matter.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    Glad to know you aren't beholden to someone on account of their having the historian designation.

    Like I said concerning Russia's fate, Hastings isn't the only one making the observation about the 1914 start of WW I, relative to if the war happened later, or if Russia didn't attack into Germany as early as it did at the start of the war in 1914.

    There's the view of not saying "if" when it comes to history. Yet, many are tempted to do so notwithstanding.

    The study of history is important - noting my reference to what Stalin might've very well learned from Russia's WW I and 1905 Japanese war experiences.

    The USSR developed a strong force in the Far-east (where Zhukov was stationed), which led to its late 1930s victory over Japan. There's the well premised opinion that Stalin was cautious to not go to war with Germany at an earlier stage on account of what happened to Russia in WW I.

  262. @Anatoly Karlin
    Once again, where exactly is the call to attack - let alone nuke - the USSR? As in, Solzhenitsyn explicitly saying that (as opposed to sovoks projecting it).

    Second, given your claims, I took the trouble of locating the the entire speech on the Internet.

    And the results were hilarious. The video is even more blatantly propagandistic than I thought.

    1. It dishonestly splices together two very separate parts of the speech [highlighted in bold] to give the impression (to sovoks, not normal people) that Solzhenitsyn was calling on the US to nuke the USSR.

    2. Solzhenitsyn said the exact opposite of what sovoks claim he said: "After my first address, as always, there were some superficial comments in the newspapers which did not really get to the essence. One of them was as follows: that I came here with an appeal to the United States to liberate us from communism. Anyone who has at all followed what I have said and written these many years; first in the Soviet Union and now in the West; will know that I've always said the exact opposite. I have appealed to my own countrymen - those whose courage has failed at difficult moments, and who have looked imploringly to the West - and urged them: "Don't wait for assistance, and don't ask for it; we must stand on our own feet. The West has enough troubles without us. If they support us, many thanks. But to ask for it, to appeal for it - never."

    3. Just a note that sovoks have trawled all of Solzhenitsyn's work and speeches for evidence of his Russophobia. And this stitched-up crap is apparently one of the most damning examples they have found. LOL.

    At one time there was no comparison between the strength of the USSR and yours. Then it became equal to yours. Now, as all recognize, it is becoming superior to yours. Perhaps today the ratio is just greater than equal, but soon it will be 2 to 1 , then 3 to 1. Finally it will be 5 to 1.

    I'm not a specialist in this area, and you're not specialists either, I suppose, but this can hardly be accidental. I think that if the armaments they had before were enough, they would not have driven things further. There must be some reason for it. With such a nuclear superiority it will be possible to block the use of your weapons, and on some unlucky morning they will declare: "Attention. We're marching our troops to Europe, and if you make a move, we will annihilate you." And this ratio of 3 to 1, or 5 to 1 will have its effect: you will not make a move. Indeed, theoreticians will be found to say, "If only we can have that blessed silence . . ."

    To make a comparison with chess, this is like two players who are sitting at a chess board, one of whom has a tremendously high opinion of himself and a rather low opinion of his opponent. He thinks that he will, of course, outplay his opponent. He thinks he is so clever, so calculating, so inventive, that he will certainly win. He sits there, he calculates his moves. With these two knights he will make four forks. He can hardly wait for his opponent to move. He's squirming on his chair out of happiness. He takes off his glasses, wipes them, and puts them back on again. He doesn't even admit the possibility that his opponent may be more clever. He doesn't even see that his pawns are being taken one after the other and that his castle is under threat. It all seems to him.. "Aha, that's what we'll do. We'll set Moscow, Peking, Pyongyang, Hanoi one against the other."

    But what a joke! No one will do any such thing! In the meantime, you've been outplayed in West Berlin; you've been very skillfully outplayed in Portugal. In the Near East you're being outplayed. One shouldn't have such a low opinion of one's opponent.

    ... [many other things] ...

    I understand, I sense that you're tired. You're fatigued, but you have not yet really suffered the terrible trials of the 20th century which have rained down on the old continent. You're tired, but not as tired as we are, lying crushed to the ground for 60 years. You're tired, but the Communists who want to destroy your system aren't tired; they're not tired at all.
    I understand that this is the most unfavorable time to come to this country and to make this sort of address. But if it were a favorable time, if it were an appropriate time, there wouldn't be any need for me to speak.

    Precisely because this is the worst possible time I have come to tell you about our experience over there. If our experience in the East could flow over to you by itself, it wouldn't be necessary for me to assume the unpleasant and inappropriate role of orator. I am a writer, and I would prefer to sit and write books. But a concentration of world evil, of hatred for humanity is taking place and it is fully determined to destroy your society. Must you wait until it comes with a crowbar to break through your borders, until the young men of America have to fall defending the borders of their continent?

    After my first address, as always, there were some superficial comments in the newspapers which did not really get to the essence. One of them was as follows: that I came here with an appeal to the United States to liberate us from communism. Anyone who has at all followed what I have said and written these many years; first in the Soviet Union and now in the West; will know that I've always said the exact opposite. I have appealed to my own countrymen - those whose courage has failed at difficult moments, and who have looked imploringly to the West - and urged them: "Don't wait for assistance, and don't ask for it; we must stand on our own feet. The West has enough troubles without us. If they support us, many thanks. But to ask for it, to appeal for it - never."

    I said the last time that two processes are occurring in the world today. One is a process of spiritual liberation in the USSR and in the other Communist countries.

    The second is the assistance being extended by the West to the Communist rulers, a process of concessions, of detente, of yielding whole countries.

    And I only said: "'Remember, we have to pull ourselves up - but if you defend us you also defend your own future." We are slaves there from birth. We are born slaves. I'm not young anymore, and I myself was born a slave; this is even more true for those who are younger. We are slaves, but we are striving for freedom. You, however, were born free. If so, then why do you help our slave owners?
     

    You are dealing with psychological phenomena here. Bringing up facts changes nothing. They are impervious to facts and arguments.

  263. @Daniel Chieh
    So Adeptus Mechanicus is the future?

    There’s a reason Musk wants to get to mars so bad…….

  264. @Seamus Day

    Dostoevsky is one of the few supreme writers, along with Homer, Aeschylus, Dante, Shakespeare & some others. Not more than 7-10 people belong to that category (great writers like Flaubert, Conrad, Faulkner,.. are more numerous).

    Just, Dostoevsky as a political publicist & public intellectual is a rather sad spectacle of inadequacy.
     
    One of my favorite writers, Boston College philosophy professor Peter Kreeft, a conservative Catholic (convert from Dutch Reformed) has always said that the the greatest novel ever written is without question The Brothers Karamazov. He has maintained this for decades.

    https://youtu.be/bLm5RggbhlE

    Kreeft- highly readable & enjoyable. I’ve read his book on Ecclesiastes & was impressed.

    • Replies: @Seamus Day
    Here’s Peter Kreeft giving a talk on Solzhenitsyn’s Harvard Commencement Address. Kreeft was there.

    https://youtu.be/zOhC8pOcReQ
  265. @German_reader

    Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.
     
    Could you elaborate a bit on the contrast?

    If you can read Russian, I suggest you read any of the “Kolyma stories” by Shalamov (or all of them, better yet) and Solzhenitsyn’s “One day…”. You’d be struck by unpretentiousness of Shalamov’s prose, as opposed to rather contrived Solzhenytsin’s narrative. I don’t know whether this quality of prose is apparent in English, I read both in Russian. Then if you compare their biographies, Shalamov spent his time in the regular camps, whereas Solzhenitsyn only was in VIP ones, which made many people believe that he was NKVD/MGB/KGB informer, both before and after his arrest. BTW, the name “solzhenitsyn” has a Russian root “solgat”, which means to tell a lie (a lie is “lozh” in Russian, you call a liar “lzhets”). As Russian saying has it, the God marks scum.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    Think about the kid at school who made up all kinds of stories and entertaining exaggerations. This is the kind of character which may become a novelist or story teller when they are older.

    Again, it's the opposite of the personality you would look for in accuracy or to be a documenter. As an entertainer, yes.
  266. @Bardon Kaldian

    Dostoevsky the novelist, however, is not quite in Tolstoy’s league. Close but not quite.
     
    Here we disagree. I guess this is something temperamental. Surely, there is no way to "prove" who is greater. They both are among supreme writers, along Shakespeare, Dante & others.

    Tolstoy was & is admired by many "colleagues" who came after him, but Dostoevsky's progeny is significantly larger. Authors who considered him to be on the top (not excluding Tolstoy) are: Stefan Zweig, Kafka, Thomas Mann, E.M. Forster, Joyce, Freud, V. Woolf, Proust, Camus, Hamsun, Henry Miller, Faulkner, Coetzee, John Updike, William Gaddis, G. Garcia Marquez, Philip Roth, Saul Bellow, ..

    Those who expressed disdain or thought he was overrated: Conrad, Hesse, D.H. Lawrence, Nabokov,..

    I happen to agree with the 1st group.

    The whole issue is nicely summed up in George Steiner's: Tolstoy or Dostoevsky?

    https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51GtIWixYAL._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

    Dostoevsky is more addictive and enjoyable while you are reading him (I have not read all his novels, but a few).

    Tolstoy – in his famous work like Anna Karenina – you remember scenes and character for a lot longer – it creates a much stronger physical and visual image. Even if you read it slowly and without great enjoyment, you can never forget it afterwards.

    In Dostoevsky, characters all blur in my head, and I just remember emotions and addictiveness of the books, as with the good detective novels.

    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian
    These are different representations of reality. Tolstoy's characters are psychological- social-biological-historical. Dostoevsky's are primary spiritual or metaphysical. For him, man is basically a metaphysical animal. If you're not into this, you two won't click.

    The only writer who is similar to Dostoevsky in this respect is Melville (some add Emily Bronte, too).

    It wasn't for nothing that Kafka, one of true Dostoevsky's heirs, exclaimed: To hell with psychology.
  267. @AnonFromTN
    If you can read Russian, I suggest you read any of the “Kolyma stories” by Shalamov (or all of them, better yet) and Solzhenitsyn’s “One day…”. You’d be struck by unpretentiousness of Shalamov’s prose, as opposed to rather contrived Solzhenytsin’s narrative. I don’t know whether this quality of prose is apparent in English, I read both in Russian. Then if you compare their biographies, Shalamov spent his time in the regular camps, whereas Solzhenitsyn only was in VIP ones, which made many people believe that he was NKVD/MGB/KGB informer, both before and after his arrest. BTW, the name “solzhenitsyn” has a Russian root “solgat”, which means to tell a lie (a lie is “lozh” in Russian, you call a liar “lzhets”). As Russian saying has it, the God marks scum.

    Think about the kid at school who made up all kinds of stories and entertaining exaggerations. This is the kind of character which may become a novelist or story teller when they are older.

    Again, it’s the opposite of the personality you would look for in accuracy or to be a documenter. As an entertainer, yes.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    The best literature is a lot more than entertainment. It leaves lasting impact on the soul. In my case, Shalamov achieves that, whereas Solzhenitsyn does not.
  268. @Dmitry
    Their concept of your soul - atman - is not touched by anything that happens in life (let alone the particular arrangement of society in 'so and so' years), or even in future or past life, although it can believe itself to be, which is how you enter into samsara, become conditioned by karma etc.

    I am sure Epicurianism also does not advocate atomistic individualism with no social concern – no healthy philosophy can. I seem to remember something about Epicurianism praising friendship as the highest ideal and something about small groups of friends joining together in a garden…

     

    Epicurus and his followers were out of favour, and controversial in society of their time. His point is that happiness can be attained, with some few simple things - (you don't need to wait around dreaming for utopia, or devaluing present people).

    Their concept of your soul – atman – is not touched by anything that happens in life (let alone the particular arrangement of society in ‘so and so’ years), or even in future or past life, although it can believe itself to be, which is how you enter into samsara, become conditioned by karma etc.

    True, that’s why Western notions of Self vs psyche are more productive. Self is here inner guide, inspiration, inner God etc (Nous, Angel Christ, Daimon, Perfect Nature, Chaya/Yechida,…).

    If you have time to waste:

    [MORE]

    Epicurus and his followers were out of favour, and controversial in society of their time. His point is that happiness can be attained, with some few simple things – (you don’t need to wait around dreaming for utopia, or devaluing present people).

    Epicurus was slandered by Stoics. But his limitations are obvious (as are theirs)- he is all about middle of the road & middle age. Just, as Blake has correctly pointed out, for some, roads of excess lead to palaces of wisdom. To hell with prudence.

    And, by the way, this has nothing to do with Solzhenitsyn…

  269. @iffen
    what is suitable, for a sober political leadership,

    Definition!

    And where in the fuck have you found it.

    what is suitable, for a sober political leadership,

    Definition!

    And where in the fuck have you found it.

    Well, now – Putin is relatively relaxed/sober character, not a typical artist or novelist. And equally, you will not see any crazy on unpredictable things happening with this leadership.

  270. @Dmitry
    Dostoevsky is more addictive and enjoyable while you are reading him (I have not read all his novels, but a few).

    Tolstoy - in his famous work like Anna Karenina - you remember scenes and character for a lot longer - it creates a much stronger physical and visual image. Even if you read it slowly and without great enjoyment, you can never forget it afterwards.

    In Dostoevsky, characters all blur in my head, and I just remember emotions and addictiveness of the books, as with the good detective novels.

    These are different representations of reality. Tolstoy’s characters are psychological- social-biological-historical. Dostoevsky’s are primary spiritual or metaphysical. For him, man is basically a metaphysical animal. If you’re not into this, you two won’t click.

    The only writer who is similar to Dostoevsky in this respect is Melville (some add Emily Bronte, too).

    It wasn’t for nothing that Kafka, one of true Dostoevsky’s heirs, exclaimed: To hell with psychology.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    It is also how the story is constructed. Dostoevsky is designed to be addictive entertainment, powered by narrative like in mystery stories.

    As a footnote - it's interesting to remember how he spoke his novels (written by his secretary).

  271. @iffen
    And the opinion of a talented artist

    I think that you are missing the point or the value. Artists, almost by definition, have a different perspective. You need to look at their description or work to gain a different, could I say, more complete understanding.

    I think that you are missing the point or the value. Artists, almost by definition, have a different perspective. You need to look at their description or work to gain a different, could I say, more complete understanding.

    As expressed within the field where they have some talent or ability. But outside this area, it’s often incredibly ‘trite’ and inadequate people.

    Just as I’m sure Versace has better perspective than all of us combined about women’s dresses. But this does not mean I will treat him as an expert, if he gives me some opinions on politics or science.

    It can be even more specific. Beethoven created extremely mathematically complex music – yet, on mathematics? – he could not add up basic arithmetic.

  272. @Dmitry
    Their concept of your soul - atman - is not touched by anything that happens in life (let alone the particular arrangement of society in 'so and so' years), or even in future or past life, although it can believe itself to be, which is how you enter into samsara, become conditioned by karma etc.

    I am sure Epicurianism also does not advocate atomistic individualism with no social concern – no healthy philosophy can. I seem to remember something about Epicurianism praising friendship as the highest ideal and something about small groups of friends joining together in a garden…

     

    Epicurus and his followers were out of favour, and controversial in society of their time. His point is that happiness can be attained, with some few simple things - (you don't need to wait around dreaming for utopia, or devaluing present people).

    You are making some very basic mistakes.

    Atman is everything, the whole universe. Since there is no division, there is no hate, aggression, or greed, only love and compassion. That’s the theory. This is not a selfish focus on personal happiness, but the realization that another person’s unhappiness is your own unhappiness.

    The practical result of this is a serious attempt to help others realize Atman – since that is the true way to liberate others from suffering, and their suffering is your own. The modern Westerner, since he sees this philosophy does not advocate external works, assumes it is socially disinterested. Nothing can be further from the truth. This philosophy has an intense social concern, focused on inner liberation rather than outer comfort. The Hindu scriptures have an intense focus on social organization – except the purpose is to structure society to facilitate inner liberstion. The scriptures discuss the Kali Yuga – an age when society has disintegretaed , much like our own, and the moral and social conditions no longer favor inner liberation, and few people achieve.

    In practice, the life recommended in the Hindu scriptures depends on very specific social conditions – for instance, the practice of sanyasa, which everyone is expected to undertake later in life, depends on charity, and societal support for large numbers of mature men “dropping out” and no longer contributing economically. Previous Hindu life depends on strong g family and community so bonds – for instance, being supported while studying the scriptures.

    Hindu philosophy does not believe individual happiness is possible – since there is no individual. It’s just that the goal is to assist everyone to achieve inner liberation – to the westerner, this seems like social disinterest.

    Hindu philosophy is what taught me so clearly that it is impossible to pursue individual happiness, so it’s funny you’re misunderstanding it so completely.

    As for Epicureans, they tried to create little mini-societies of good friends – friendship was the ideal. They did not for a second imagine happiness could be pursued individually. They merely despaired of the larger society, and took emergency measures. In any event, they proved not to be long-term viabl. They were replaced by a philosophy that placed communal happiness even more central stage, which lasted for more than a thousand years.

    The lessons are clear.

    Even religious hermits and solitary mediators in caves fe lt themselves connected to an invisible we of humanity, and that they were sending ripples out through the continuum.

    Face it, atomized individualism is a feature of no culture other than our own crumbling and dying modern one, which has proven non long-term viable.

    But you cannot accept that. And so you will die, unhappy.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    I see another possible source of misunderstanding -

    It is true that realizing atman means you are impervious to pain of any kind. This does not, however, imply social disintetest, nor that others pain is immaterial to you. The one who has realized atman does not see himself as an individual, but as one with the world. Even if he felt indifferent to sofail conditions, he has compassion for others, and sees himself as at one with them. Which amounts to social interest, just of a different kind than westerners are used to.

    He will certainly want society to cultivate compassion and religion, though he may be indifferent to slavery, hierarchy, classes, poverty, and the like.

    But materialists cannot understand this kind of social concern.
  273. The longer series of articles would be welcome.

  274. @Bardon Kaldian
    Kreeft- highly readable & enjoyable. I've read his book on Ecclesiastes & was impressed.

    Here’s Peter Kreeft giving a talk on Solzhenitsyn’s Harvard Commencement Address. Kreeft was there.

  275. @AaronB
    You are making some very basic mistakes.

    Atman is everything, the whole universe. Since there is no division, there is no hate, aggression, or greed, only love and compassion. That's the theory. This is not a selfish focus on personal happiness, but the realization that another person's unhappiness is your own unhappiness.

    The practical result of this is a serious attempt to help others realize Atman - since that is the true way to liberate others from suffering, and their suffering is your own. The modern Westerner, since he sees this philosophy does not advocate external works, assumes it is socially disinterested. Nothing can be further from the truth. This philosophy has an intense social concern, focused on inner liberation rather than outer comfort. The Hindu scriptures have an intense focus on social organization - except the purpose is to structure society to facilitate inner liberstion. The scriptures discuss the Kali Yuga - an age when society has disintegretaed , much like our own, and the moral and social conditions no longer favor inner liberation, and few people achieve.

    In practice, the life recommended in the Hindu scriptures depends on very specific social conditions - for instance, the practice of sanyasa, which everyone is expected to undertake later in life, depends on charity, and societal support for large numbers of mature men "dropping out" and no longer contributing economically. Previous Hindu life depends on strong g family and community so bonds - for instance, being supported while studying the scriptures.

    Hindu philosophy does not believe individual happiness is possible - since there is no individual. It's just that the goal is to assist everyone to achieve inner liberation - to the westerner, this seems like social disinterest.

    Hindu philosophy is what taught me so clearly that it is impossible to pursue individual happiness, so it's funny you're misunderstanding it so completely.

    As for Epicureans, they tried to create little mini-societies of good friends - friendship was the ideal. They did not for a second imagine happiness could be pursued individually. They merely despaired of the larger society, and took emergency measures. In any event, they proved not to be long-term viabl. They were replaced by a philosophy that placed communal happiness even more central stage, which lasted for more than a thousand years.

    The lessons are clear.

    Even religious hermits and solitary mediators in caves fe lt themselves connected to an invisible we of humanity, and that they were sending ripples out through the continuum.

    Face it, atomized individualism is a feature of no culture other than our own crumbling and dying modern one, which has proven non long-term viable.

    But you cannot accept that. And so you will die, unhappy.

    I see another possible source of misunderstanding –

    It is true that realizing atman means you are impervious to pain of any kind. This does not, however, imply social disintetest, nor that others pain is immaterial to you. The one who has realized atman does not see himself as an individual, but as one with the world. Even if he felt indifferent to sofail conditions, he has compassion for others, and sees himself as at one with them. Which amounts to social interest, just of a different kind than westerners are used to.

    He will certainly want society to cultivate compassion and religion, though he may be indifferent to slavery, hierarchy, classes, poverty, and the like.

    But materialists cannot understand this kind of social concern.

    • Replies: @utu

    he has compassion for others, and sees himself as at one with them
     
    Good point. Long time ago I read about some Zen practitioner who realized that just doing Zen is not enough. It is not the same for Japanese and say Americans. They bring completely different attitude and goals to the practice. When interviewed after the Zen retreat from Americans you could hear "I, I, I, me, me ,me" like for example I became aware of my needs" while from Japanese it was more about awareness of other people about being mindful of others.

    This may indicate that spiritual awakening will do no good. Once people are lost they are lost forever. And the process begins early in life and then it is only reinforced even if you try to go on some spiritual path because it will all about your own ass.
  276. @Mikhail
    Max Hastings notes that if WW I was fought in 1916, as opposed to 1914, the outcome on the eastern front and Russia's fate might've been very different. He's not alone in that belief.

    Russia wasn't prepared to launch the offensive it did in the earlier part of WW I. That move which helped France was detrimental to Russia. For Russia, that attack led to decreased morale and Red agitation. Even though Russia's armaments situation is said to have improved by 1917, its morale reached a low point for the reasons described. If the first part of this last set of points is under dispute, it should be followed up on in great detail.

    We know about Lenin's dealing with the Germans, including German support for the Reds. A matter related to the character in Pasternak's Dr. Zhivago, who is portrayed as seeking to subvert Russia's WW I effort.

    Stalin likely had Russia's WW I experience in mind, when he showed a reluctance to not initially confront Germany - even though he was warned of an impending German attack.

    Stalin likely had Russia’s WW I experience in mind, when he showed a reluctance to not initially confront Germany – even though he was warned of an impending German attack.

    It has nothing to do with his WW I experience but everything to do with what he stated in his February 4, 1931 piece. Stalin: “We are 50 or 100 years behind the advanced countries. We must make good this distance in 10 years. Either we do it, or we shall go under”. He was buying time to the very end. Both purges (albeit they were overemphasized in the West) and institutional transformation of the Red Army played a huge role in him not to confront Germany.

    We know about Lenin’s dealing with the Germans, including German support for the Reds. A matter related to the character in Pasternak’s Dr. Zhivago, who is portrayed as seeking to subvert Russia’s WW I effort.

    Another largely urban legend popular in the West and debunked by none other than Sergo Beria in his memoirs, who unlike all Western “historians”, did have access to the top of Soviet intelligence. Using втёмную (useful idiot) is also completely disregarded by most (not all) Russia “experts” in the West who are not experts and mostly are ideologues and propagandists. This is not to mention (oh, the irony) same very Solzhenitsyn from his Russian Question in the End of XX Century Facing, where, amidst his utter a-historical delirium, even he was forced to admit that Bolsheviks “in 1917 simply lifted political power from the ground, where it was laying not needed to anyone” (the quote close to original). Obviously admitting the fact , born out by overwhelming empirical and academic evidence, that Tsarist Russia was simply not-equipped, for all heroism and sometimes operational brilliance of its soldiers and officers, to face modern Germany (among others) lagging behind nt not in times, but order of magnitude in main war materiel production, as well as literacy or, rather, illiteracy of own army, is beyond the limits of Western “historiography”. All that way before any “Reds” started to “sabotage” anything. Obviously a disastrous role of February conspirators such as Guchkov, Milukov, just to name a few, is always ignored. In the end, it seems, simplest dyadic relation of military potentials is beyond the mathematical grasp of all those “specialists” and “strategists”. As one can easily hear from Solzhenitsyn’s utter military nuclear delirium in his passionate “warning” to ever humanitarian West.

    • Replies: @Mikhail

    It has nothing to do with his WW I experience but everything to do with what he stated in his February 4, 1931 piece. Stalin: “We are 50 or 100 years behind the advanced countries. We must make good this distance in 10 years. Either we do it, or we shall go under”. He was buying time to the very end. Both purges (albeit they were overemphasized in the West) and institutional transformation of the Red Army played a huge role in him not to confront Germany.
     
    Vintage Sovok. Pre-Soviet Russia wasn't so comparatively backwards as many on the left are prone to exaggerate. I'm glad to encounter Soviet reared Russians who acknowledge this reality, which explains why the tricolor and two headed eagle have been readopted by post-Soviet Russia.

    Of course WW I and the Russian Civil War took a heavy toll on Russia. For accuracy sake, that aspect shouldn't be used to try to legitimize the before the revolution, there was nothing BS.

    Stalin's officer corps purges did hamper the Red Army's ability for a certain period. We saw how clumsy the Finnish campaign was carried out. Stalin apparently thought he could just send a large number of raw recruits to achieve victory. That kind of flippant thinking led to many more deaths than what was otherwise necessary to ensure Soviet strategic interests.

    On the other hand at around the same time, the Japanese were taken more seriously than the Finns on account of Russia's 1905 experience with Japan. Concerning the Far-east, I suspect that Soviet forces father away from the Kremlin were better protected from the foolish purges.

  277. @utu
    With this comment you showed that you are pos a bad loser. Karlin clearly demonstrated that you believe in some made up fantasy for reasons unknown. Yes, unknown, because you are intelligent enough to be able to recognize when you are in error. Yet in this case you refuse to correct it. That's why I call you pos because I had higher expectations form you. GFY. You will be considered as pos from now on.

    Yes, unknown, because you are intelligent enough to be able to recognize when you are in error

    Spare me your pathetic condescension. Call me a fool–from you it will be a compliment. If you need a Q-tip to clear your ears–get to the nearest grocery store. May help to hear what is on Youtube documentary.

  278. @Anonymous
    I don’t understand Russian but if that interpreter is accurate it does seem Solzhenitsyn was advocating that the USSR has to be stopped or this inexorable increase in their nukes will lead to an actual offensive action against the West. He doesn’t actually call for the U.S. to nuke the USSR but implies it. Kind of like when a Western politician says, “Are we just going to sit back and allow Assad to gas his own population?”, he or she is really saying to bomb Assad and the Syrian gov’t/military and get a regime change.

    I don’t understand Russian but if that interpreter is accurate it does seem Solzhenitsyn was advocating that the USSR has to be stopped or this inexorable increase in their nukes will lead to an actual offensive action against the West. He doesn’t actually call for the U.S. to nuke the USSR but implies it.

    That simply isn’t true. He might simply have meant that the West should improve its defences – use its superior economic strength to one-up the Russian military might. In fact, that is what I was thinking during the cold war – if the Russians are indeed as strong as everyone was saying and could push us into the Atlantic, why don’t we simply strengthen our defences to make sure they won’t? Even at the height of the cold war, most Western European armies were just war museums on wheels. Just threatening first use of nukes and otherwise hoping for the best never made any sense to me.

  279. @German_reader
    That's really interesting, thanks.
    I know very little about Shalamov (don't know really much Solzhenitsyn either tbh), my impression is he's not that well-known in Western countries (though that may have changed somewhat in recent years, I've certainly seen him mentioned in German/Swiss newspapers). It seems to me that he was politically quite different from Solzhenitsyn (if I understand correctly he was originally arrested for left-wing oppositionism), does this relate to present-day political fault lines among Russians in some way?

    It seems to me that he was politically quite different from Solzhenitsyn (if I understand correctly he was originally arrested for left-wing oppositionism

    Yes, he left this note in his diaries: “No bitch from “progressive humanity” should be allowed near my archive. I forbid writer Solzhenitsyn and all those having thoughts similar to his have acquaintance with my archive.” He and Solzhenitsyn were opposites of political “spectrum”, if one may say so, albeit to consider Solzhenitsyn as a “realist” in any aspect of politics, other than self-serving opportunist, is impossible for anyone even with rudimentary knowledge of Russia’s history and literature. Shalamov also highly readable, if not terrifying, in his almost detached documentary style which puts Kolyma Stories in the league of its own in all so called GULAG (lagernaya literatura).

    does this relate to present-day political fault lines among Russians in some way?

    Not really and that’s what makes Karlin’s “posts” so detached from Russia’s realities: political, economic, cultural, not to speak of geopolitical and military. Such as this propagation of a second-rate “thinker” Kholmogorov, who is nothing more than media-manipulator. As per Solzhenitsyn–local ideological so called “anti-Sovetchiks” (many of them–genuine Russophobes) will continue to ignore an embarrassing ignoring of Solzhenitsyn’s death and funeral (barely attended in accordance to reports of several major Russian TV networks in 2008) by overwhelming majority of Russians. So much for “prophet” and self-proclaimed “consciousness of Russia”. But Solzh got unlucky, archives were open and real historians emerged exactly the time he got back to Russia after missing on the whole two generations of Russians who do not really care about his fantasies. If not for Putin he would have been completely excluded from Russia’s public schools literature curriculum, maybe with the exception of Matrenin Dvor.

    • Replies: @German_reader

    He and Solzhenitsyn were opposites of political “spectrum”
     
    That's interesting, I had no idea such conflicts existed. Thanks to you and to "AnonfromTN", that was informative.
  280. @German_reader
    Well yes, but as AK has pointed out, the two sections cited in that video clip don't really belong together.
    From today's perspective it looks pretty alarmist though, with the differences and tensions between different communist states (most notably the Soviet Union and China) downplayed and the fiction of a global communist threat resurrected, as if it still was 1950. That wasn't an accurate perception of reality even at the time of the speech.

    What Karlin didn’t point out, of course, that what Solzh was doing is called treason of own people and he was doing it for personal gain. But then again, Solzhentsyn always loved traitors, even proverbial fictional Ivan Denisovich was none other than deserter. Most here, of course, never read Alexandr Zinoviev, who, unlike Solzhenitsyn, was a scientist with the global name, who coined the phrase “We aimed at communism but hit Russia”. But this concept is beyond the grasp of self-confident hipsters and public forums’ “intellectuals”. I, of course, omit here Solzh’s peculiar “understanding” of nuclearism and nuclear parity with his “ratios” taken out of his most ridiculous fantasies.

  281. @AaronB
    If I have to answer in under ten words, it would be "lack of "religion", broadly understood".

    Everything else I've been writing about for months is just details.

    If I have to answer in under ten words, it would be “lack of “religion”, broadly understood”.

    I think this pretty much sums up the malaise that is destroying the West.

    But where is God to be found??

    I know. If you have to ask you are in trouble.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    Agreed. If you are asking, you have already surrendered to the primacy of logic, and you are lost.
    , @Anon

    And he said to them: Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go to him at midnight, and shall say to him: Friend, lend me three loaves, Because a friend of mine is come off his journey to me, and I have not what to set before him. And he from within should answer, and say: Trouble me not, the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee. Yet if he shall continue knocking, I say to you, although he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend; yet, because of his importunity, he will rise, and give him as many as he needeth.

    And I say to you, Ask, and it shall be given you: seek, and you shall find: knock, and it shall be opened to you. For every one that asketh, receiveth; and he that seeketh, findeth; and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened.
     
  282. @lavoisier

    If I have to answer in under ten words, it would be “lack of “religion”, broadly understood”.
     
    I think this pretty much sums up the malaise that is destroying the West.

    But where is God to be found??

    I know. If you have to ask you are in trouble.

    Agreed. If you are asking, you have already surrendered to the primacy of logic, and you are lost.

    • Replies: @Talha
    There is an instructive anecdote about Imam Fakhruddin Razi (ra) one of our greatest theologians (up there with Imams Baqillani [ra] and Ghazali [ra])...

    Once Imam Fakhruddin Razi (ra) was passing through a town and was surrounded by an entourage of eager students. An old woman came out and asked what was going on when she saw the crowd. One student replied, “Don’t you know who that is? That’s the famous ar-Razi, he has worked out 70 proofs for the existence of God!”

    “If he didn’t have 70 doubts, he wouldn’t need 70 proofs,” she replied.

    When word of this exchange got back to him, he addressed his students, “I urge you to have the faith of old women!”

    Peace.
  283. @AaronB
    I see another possible source of misunderstanding -

    It is true that realizing atman means you are impervious to pain of any kind. This does not, however, imply social disintetest, nor that others pain is immaterial to you. The one who has realized atman does not see himself as an individual, but as one with the world. Even if he felt indifferent to sofail conditions, he has compassion for others, and sees himself as at one with them. Which amounts to social interest, just of a different kind than westerners are used to.

    He will certainly want society to cultivate compassion and religion, though he may be indifferent to slavery, hierarchy, classes, poverty, and the like.

    But materialists cannot understand this kind of social concern.

    he has compassion for others, and sees himself as at one with them

    Good point. Long time ago I read about some Zen practitioner who realized that just doing Zen is not enough. It is not the same for Japanese and say Americans. They bring completely different attitude and goals to the practice. When interviewed after the Zen retreat from Americans you could hear “I, I, I, me, me ,me” like for example I became aware of my needs” while from Japanese it was more about awareness of other people about being mindful of others.

    This may indicate that spiritual awakening will do no good. Once people are lost they are lost forever. And the process begins early in life and then it is only reinforced even if you try to go on some spiritual path because it will all about your own ass.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    Very, very true. I have practically stopped reading western books on eastern religions, because they tend to extract the religion from its total matrix, and analyze it on its own, producing an extremely false picture.

    A zen practice that develops compassion in a Japanese context, may develop ego in a western context.

    Context is all, totality is all - the analytical approach fails us here.

    You cannot import these religions into the west as standalones - we can learn from them, and we can seek to understand them in their contexts, but if you truly want to practice zen you must engage with wider Japanese culture - learn the language, go live there, have Japanese friends. Immerse yourself. It's a total, communal thing.

    This also speaks to the primacy of communal life - it is literally impossible to be a genuine Buddhist if you are engaged in social life in America, read the newspapers, etc Too many psychic pulls against it. Impossible.

    This is why I say community is crucial , and larger cultural support is crucial.

    You may have a point, sadly, that once a culture is gone, it is lost, it cannot be reconstructed analytically on an individual basis, for yourself - at best we can provide conditions for a new culture to grow organically. One such condition is a renewal of community - this will fertilize then soil for a spiritual awakening. It cannot be done alone.
  284. @AaronB
    Agreed. If you are asking, you have already surrendered to the primacy of logic, and you are lost.

    There is an instructive anecdote about Imam Fakhruddin Razi (ra) one of our greatest theologians (up there with Imams Baqillani [ra] and Ghazali [ra])…

    Once Imam Fakhruddin Razi (ra) was passing through a town and was surrounded by an entourage of eager students. An old woman came out and asked what was going on when she saw the crowd. One student replied, “Don’t you know who that is? That’s the famous ar-Razi, he has worked out 70 proofs for the existence of God!”

    “If he didn’t have 70 doubts, he wouldn’t need 70 proofs,” she replied.

    When word of this exchange got back to him, he addressed his students, “I urge you to have the faith of old women!”

    Peace.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    Excellent!
  285. @Anon

    Not really. You might remember from my comments that I have said that I have considered “faking it” because of the estrangement.
     
    Christ said "the truth will set you free" and iffen amended it only slightly to "the white lie will set you free".

    iffen amended it only slightly to “the white lie will set you free”.

    iffen has observed that the truth will set you free from many friends.

    • LOL: Talha
    • Replies: @Anon
    IJ 14:6

    "I am the way and the fib and the life; no one comes to the Dinner, but through me."
  286. @Andrei Martyanov

    It seems to me that he was politically quite different from Solzhenitsyn (if I understand correctly he was originally arrested for left-wing oppositionism
     
    Yes, he left this note in his diaries: "No bitch from "progressive humanity" should be allowed near my archive. I forbid writer Solzhenitsyn and all those having thoughts similar to his have acquaintance with my archive." He and Solzhenitsyn were opposites of political "spectrum", if one may say so, albeit to consider Solzhenitsyn as a "realist" in any aspect of politics, other than self-serving opportunist, is impossible for anyone even with rudimentary knowledge of Russia's history and literature. Shalamov also highly readable, if not terrifying, in his almost detached documentary style which puts Kolyma Stories in the league of its own in all so called GULAG (lagernaya literatura).

    does this relate to present-day political fault lines among Russians in some way?
     
    Not really and that's what makes Karlin's "posts" so detached from Russia's realities: political, economic, cultural, not to speak of geopolitical and military. Such as this propagation of a second-rate "thinker" Kholmogorov, who is nothing more than media-manipulator. As per Solzhenitsyn--local ideological so called "anti-Sovetchiks" (many of them--genuine Russophobes) will continue to ignore an embarrassing ignoring of Solzhenitsyn's death and funeral (barely attended in accordance to reports of several major Russian TV networks in 2008) by overwhelming majority of Russians. So much for "prophet" and self-proclaimed "consciousness of Russia". But Solzh got unlucky, archives were open and real historians emerged exactly the time he got back to Russia after missing on the whole two generations of Russians who do not really care about his fantasies. If not for Putin he would have been completely excluded from Russia's public schools literature curriculum, maybe with the exception of Matrenin Dvor.

    He and Solzhenitsyn were opposites of political “spectrum”

    That’s interesting, I had no idea such conflicts existed. Thanks to you and to “AnonfromTN”, that was informative.

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    That’s interesting, I had no idea such conflicts existed.
     
    There was, of course, the element of professional envy between them. Shalamov is simply much better writer, not to mention his massive real GULAG experience, which even Solzhenitsyn privately admitted. Shalamov, no doubt, was annoyed by all Solzh's publicity while himself being basically overshadowed by a literary thief in the field which constitutes one of the most important moral and ethical issues in modern Russian history.
    , @Seraphim
    Shalamov was a Trotskyst and that's why he was so much pumped up by the Trotsko-infested 'West' lefties.
  287. @Bardon Kaldian
    I'll just state my opinion (after all, literary discussion is not what this thread is about).

    However, both Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky are so close to the top of world literature, that it makes no difference. I’d put Bulgakov and possibly Sholokhov (for “Quietly Flows the Don”) in the same league.
     
    Bulgakov & Sholokhov are good writers, but they're not even close. The only 20th C writer who belongs to the "supreme" category is Marcel Proust. I was glad to see that Forster and George Steiner were of the same opinion.

    Getting back to this article, Solzhenitsyn is nowhere near either of them. He is way below even the second-tier Russian writers (like Gogol), in my view even below the third tier (say, Turgenev, who was mocked by Dostoyevsky).
     

    These things are hard to compare. Solzhenitsyn is an impressive writer in the vein of 19th C tradition, in his two novels (The First Circle, Cancer Ward)- vivid characterization, love story, satire etc., despite occasional clumsiness. Of course, he is not a modernist (high or post-) & he's plainly inferior to great 20th C authors like Mann or Conrad. Just, his work remains highly readable & will be considered, I think, close to realist 20th C novelists like Martin Du Gard.

    TGA is a political pamphlet containing gems, but as a whole- I've read it long time ago- it is formless & artless. Most critics argue about authenticity of this or that detail. In the long run, this seems to be of secondary importance.

    Solzhenitsyn as a political writer (or "prophet") is not great; but, he's rather good as a classical novelist.

    The only thing I really liked is “One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich”, but even compared to that Shalamov’s description of camps is better. Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.
     

    Shalamov's "Kolyma Tales" seem to me greater achievement in the field of "ccamp literature", but Solzhenitsyn has more to offer in his novels.

    Documentary value is not the issue here.

    Proust bores me to death. I have to confess, though, I don’t know enough French to read the original. If I had to name writers of the highest caliber in the twentieth century, I’d name Joyce and Faulkner. Again, that may be because I read the originals, in English I have no trouble reading anything, from La Morte d’Arhtur to modern stuff. However, I liked Thomas Mann, even though I don’t read German.

    Shalamov is not just documentary, his stories are exquisitely written. Another thing that irks me in Solzhenitsyn is that he attempts to be like Tolstoy (especially noticeable in “August 2014”; I was put off by that and did not read the other books in that series), reminding me of the French story about a frog that tried to become as large as a bull.

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    Solzhenitsyn is that he attempts to be like Tolstoy (especially noticeable in “August 2014”; I was put off by that
     
    His last wife was quite explicit in one of her interviews that he thought himself as a heir to Dostoevsky. I almost choked, of course, upon hearing this. Tell me about megalomania after that. But grandiose statements and gestures were always a part of his MO.
  288. @Dmitry
    Think about the kid at school who made up all kinds of stories and entertaining exaggerations. This is the kind of character which may become a novelist or story teller when they are older.

    Again, it's the opposite of the personality you would look for in accuracy or to be a documenter. As an entertainer, yes.

    The best literature is a lot more than entertainment. It leaves lasting impact on the soul. In my case, Shalamov achieves that, whereas Solzhenitsyn does not.

    • Replies: @gwynedd1
    Depends on the appetite. A lasting effect on my soul is a more lasting pschological joy. It could never complete with a swimsuit issue in drawing an immediate attention, and I am quite sure there are many who by action alone consider that the best literature.

    The best literature in my mind is during those dark ages when truth cannot be stated openly, and is skillfully hidden within the story. It can accuse, try , and convict a despot right under his very nose.
  289. @utu

    he has compassion for others, and sees himself as at one with them
     
    Good point. Long time ago I read about some Zen practitioner who realized that just doing Zen is not enough. It is not the same for Japanese and say Americans. They bring completely different attitude and goals to the practice. When interviewed after the Zen retreat from Americans you could hear "I, I, I, me, me ,me" like for example I became aware of my needs" while from Japanese it was more about awareness of other people about being mindful of others.

    This may indicate that spiritual awakening will do no good. Once people are lost they are lost forever. And the process begins early in life and then it is only reinforced even if you try to go on some spiritual path because it will all about your own ass.

    Very, very true. I have practically stopped reading western books on eastern religions, because they tend to extract the religion from its total matrix, and analyze it on its own, producing an extremely false picture.

    A zen practice that develops compassion in a Japanese context, may develop ego in a western context.

    Context is all, totality is all – the analytical approach fails us here.

    You cannot import these religions into the west as standalones – we can learn from them, and we can seek to understand them in their contexts, but if you truly want to practice zen you must engage with wider Japanese culture – learn the language, go live there, have Japanese friends. Immerse yourself. It’s a total, communal thing.

    This also speaks to the primacy of communal life – it is literally impossible to be a genuine Buddhist if you are engaged in social life in America, read the newspapers, etc Too many psychic pulls against it. Impossible.

    This is why I say community is crucial , and larger cultural support is crucial.

    You may have a point, sadly, that once a culture is gone, it is lost, it cannot be reconstructed analytically on an individual basis, for yourself – at best we can provide conditions for a new culture to grow organically. One such condition is a renewal of community – this will fertilize then soil for a spiritual awakening. It cannot be done alone.

  290. @Talha
    There is an instructive anecdote about Imam Fakhruddin Razi (ra) one of our greatest theologians (up there with Imams Baqillani [ra] and Ghazali [ra])...

    Once Imam Fakhruddin Razi (ra) was passing through a town and was surrounded by an entourage of eager students. An old woman came out and asked what was going on when she saw the crowd. One student replied, “Don’t you know who that is? That’s the famous ar-Razi, he has worked out 70 proofs for the existence of God!”

    “If he didn’t have 70 doubts, he wouldn’t need 70 proofs,” she replied.

    When word of this exchange got back to him, he addressed his students, “I urge you to have the faith of old women!”

    Peace.

    Excellent!

  291. @German_reader
    Well yes, Thomas Weber is a cretinous establishment propagandist (his book about Hitler is also supposedly very bad). But Max Hastings does propaganda as well imo.

    Russia was undergoing a modern military expansion. No WW I in 1914 and 1915, would’ve likely put Russia in a stronger position.
     
    Yes, but that's kind of a banal observation...I still don't really get your point. Yes, if the war had come a few years later, Russia would have been better prepared. But Russia's elites were deluded enough to stumble into war in 1914, so all those "what ifs?" don't really matter.

    Glad to know you aren’t beholden to someone on account of their having the historian designation.

    Like I said concerning Russia’s fate, Hastings isn’t the only one making the observation about the 1914 start of WW I, relative to if the war happened later, or if Russia didn’t attack into Germany as early as it did at the start of the war in 1914.

    There’s the view of not saying “if” when it comes to history. Yet, many are tempted to do so notwithstanding.

    The study of history is important – noting my reference to what Stalin might’ve very well learned from Russia’s WW I and 1905 Japanese war experiences.

    The USSR developed a strong force in the Far-east (where Zhukov was stationed), which led to its late 1930s victory over Japan. There’s the well premised opinion that Stalin was cautious to not go to war with Germany at an earlier stage on account of what happened to Russia in WW I.

  292. @iffen
    iffen amended it only slightly to “the white lie will set you free”.

    iffen has observed that the truth will set you free from many friends.

    IJ 14:6

    “I am the way and the fib and the life; no one comes to the Dinner, but through me.”

  293. @AnonFromTN
    Proust bores me to death. I have to confess, though, I don’t know enough French to read the original. If I had to name writers of the highest caliber in the twentieth century, I’d name Joyce and Faulkner. Again, that may be because I read the originals, in English I have no trouble reading anything, from La Morte d’Arhtur to modern stuff. However, I liked Thomas Mann, even though I don’t read German.

    Shalamov is not just documentary, his stories are exquisitely written. Another thing that irks me in Solzhenitsyn is that he attempts to be like Tolstoy (especially noticeable in “August 2014”; I was put off by that and did not read the other books in that series), reminding me of the French story about a frog that tried to become as large as a bull.

    Solzhenitsyn is that he attempts to be like Tolstoy (especially noticeable in “August 2014”; I was put off by that

    His last wife was quite explicit in one of her interviews that he thought himself as a heir to Dostoevsky. I almost choked, of course, upon hearing this. Tell me about megalomania after that. But grandiose statements and gestures were always a part of his MO.

  294. @German_reader

    He and Solzhenitsyn were opposites of political “spectrum”
     
    That's interesting, I had no idea such conflicts existed. Thanks to you and to "AnonfromTN", that was informative.

    That’s interesting, I had no idea such conflicts existed.

    There was, of course, the element of professional envy between them. Shalamov is simply much better writer, not to mention his massive real GULAG experience, which even Solzhenitsyn privately admitted. Shalamov, no doubt, was annoyed by all Solzh’s publicity while himself being basically overshadowed by a literary thief in the field which constitutes one of the most important moral and ethical issues in modern Russian history.

  295. @Andrei Martyanov

    Stalin likely had Russia’s WW I experience in mind, when he showed a reluctance to not initially confront Germany – even though he was warned of an impending German attack.
     
    It has nothing to do with his WW I experience but everything to do with what he stated in his February 4, 1931 piece. Stalin: “We are 50 or 100 years behind the advanced countries. We must make good this distance in 10 years. Either we do it, or we shall go under". He was buying time to the very end. Both purges (albeit they were overemphasized in the West) and institutional transformation of the Red Army played a huge role in him not to confront Germany.

    We know about Lenin’s dealing with the Germans, including German support for the Reds. A matter related to the character in Pasternak’s Dr. Zhivago, who is portrayed as seeking to subvert Russia’s WW I effort.
     
    Another largely urban legend popular in the West and debunked by none other than Sergo Beria in his memoirs, who unlike all Western "historians", did have access to the top of Soviet intelligence. Using втёмную (useful idiot) is also completely disregarded by most (not all) Russia "experts" in the West who are not experts and mostly are ideologues and propagandists. This is not to mention (oh, the irony) same very Solzhenitsyn from his Russian Question in the End of XX Century Facing, where, amidst his utter a-historical delirium, even he was forced to admit that Bolsheviks "in 1917 simply lifted political power from the ground, where it was laying not needed to anyone" (the quote close to original). Obviously admitting the fact , born out by overwhelming empirical and academic evidence, that Tsarist Russia was simply not-equipped, for all heroism and sometimes operational brilliance of its soldiers and officers, to face modern Germany (among others) lagging behind nt not in times, but order of magnitude in main war materiel production, as well as literacy or, rather, illiteracy of own army, is beyond the limits of Western "historiography". All that way before any "Reds" started to "sabotage" anything. Obviously a disastrous role of February conspirators such as Guchkov, Milukov, just to name a few, is always ignored. In the end, it seems, simplest dyadic relation of military potentials is beyond the mathematical grasp of all those "specialists" and "strategists". As one can easily hear from Solzhenitsyn's utter military nuclear delirium in his passionate "warning" to ever humanitarian West.

    It has nothing to do with his WW I experience but everything to do with what he stated in his February 4, 1931 piece. Stalin: “We are 50 or 100 years behind the advanced countries. We must make good this distance in 10 years. Either we do it, or we shall go under”. He was buying time to the very end. Both purges (albeit they were overemphasized in the West) and institutional transformation of the Red Army played a huge role in him not to confront Germany.

    Vintage Sovok. Pre-Soviet Russia wasn’t so comparatively backwards as many on the left are prone to exaggerate. I’m glad to encounter Soviet reared Russians who acknowledge this reality, which explains why the tricolor and two headed eagle have been readopted by post-Soviet Russia.

    Of course WW I and the Russian Civil War took a heavy toll on Russia. For accuracy sake, that aspect shouldn’t be used to try to legitimize the before the revolution, there was nothing BS.

    Stalin’s officer corps purges did hamper the Red Army’s ability for a certain period. We saw how clumsy the Finnish campaign was carried out. Stalin apparently thought he could just send a large number of raw recruits to achieve victory. That kind of flippant thinking led to many more deaths than what was otherwise necessary to ensure Soviet strategic interests.

    On the other hand at around the same time, the Japanese were taken more seriously than the Finns on account of Russia’s 1905 experience with Japan. Concerning the Far-east, I suspect that Soviet forces father away from the Kremlin were better protected from the foolish purges.

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    Vintage Sovok.
     
    Do you need e-mail and address of US Army Colonel David Glantz? Since I narrated him to you almost verbatim from his 2015 edition (with Jonathan House) of When Titans Clashed. I am sure both of them, American officers with serious service and military-academic experience will be thrilled to learn that they are "vintage sovoks". But then again, it is difficult to argue with people who do not even understand what Sovok means. I'll give you a hint--it has a lot to do, among many, with Shukshin literature, as an example.

    On the other hand at around the same time, the Japanese were taken more seriously than the Finns on account of Russia’s 1905 experience with Japan. Concerning the Far-east, I suspect that Soviet forces father away from the Kremlin were better protected from the foolish purges.

     

    We may recall Khalhin-Gol, have you heard of it? As per purges--recall who was in charge of military at Far East and why was he persecuted.

    I’m glad to encounter Soviet reared Russians who acknowledge this reality, which explains why the tricolor and two headed eagle have been readopted by post-Soviet Russia.

     

    Do you mean me? Have you ever encountered Operational Research (not to be mistaken with Campaign Study)? Do those, including operational art and strategy go under "tricolor and two headed eagle"(c), or do they go under Swastika? Last time I checked, with the exception of contemporary Western "military art (of BS)" those issues are not exactly related to outward symbols as much as to a combination of factors of industrial. scientific, operational and strategic nature. A rather universal language for Nazis, Communists, Monarchists, Maoists--you name it--of numbers, very-very many of them. That is why military academies and academies of general staffs have been invented.
  296. @Bardon Kaldian
    I'll just state my opinion (after all, literary discussion is not what this thread is about).

    However, both Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky are so close to the top of world literature, that it makes no difference. I’d put Bulgakov and possibly Sholokhov (for “Quietly Flows the Don”) in the same league.
     
    Bulgakov & Sholokhov are good writers, but they're not even close. The only 20th C writer who belongs to the "supreme" category is Marcel Proust. I was glad to see that Forster and George Steiner were of the same opinion.

    Getting back to this article, Solzhenitsyn is nowhere near either of them. He is way below even the second-tier Russian writers (like Gogol), in my view even below the third tier (say, Turgenev, who was mocked by Dostoyevsky).
     

    These things are hard to compare. Solzhenitsyn is an impressive writer in the vein of 19th C tradition, in his two novels (The First Circle, Cancer Ward)- vivid characterization, love story, satire etc., despite occasional clumsiness. Of course, he is not a modernist (high or post-) & he's plainly inferior to great 20th C authors like Mann or Conrad. Just, his work remains highly readable & will be considered, I think, close to realist 20th C novelists like Martin Du Gard.

    TGA is a political pamphlet containing gems, but as a whole- I've read it long time ago- it is formless & artless. Most critics argue about authenticity of this or that detail. In the long run, this seems to be of secondary importance.

    Solzhenitsyn as a political writer (or "prophet") is not great; but, he's rather good as a classical novelist.

    The only thing I really liked is “One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich”, but even compared to that Shalamov’s description of camps is better. Maybe because Shalamov rings true, whereas I could never get rid of the feeling that Solzhenitsyn is false through and through.
     

    Shalamov's "Kolyma Tales" seem to me greater achievement in the field of "ccamp literature", but Solzhenitsyn has more to offer in his novels.

    Documentary value is not the issue here.

    Documentary value is not the issue here.

    It IS THE issue, since GULAG Archipelago, despite being largely work of fiction, with always small font clarification underneath main title which reads:”the experience in fictional study”, was used in the West as a historic document. I am not talking about Solzhenitsyn’s direct falsification of the history of WW II. Reference to Solzhenitsyn as some kind of “authority”, of which he never was, either on GULAG, Russian history,military history, nuclear weapons, for crying out loud, enough to remember Pipes’ 1977 delirious essay on nuclear war, is still prevalent in the West and is still a part of a huge ideological game already against modern day Russia. Neocon ideological Parnassus is very much still in love with Solzhenitsyn when it suites them.

  297. @The Big Red Scary

    What’s there to appreciate about an incompetent loser like Nicholas II?
     
    After reading Dominic Lieven's biography of Nicholas II (which includes a fair amount of information about other important figures of the time, including Sergei Witte and Pyotr Stolypin), I came
    to better appreciate the difficulty of the situation in which Nicholas II found himself. It seems to me that the administration of the Russian Empire had become so complex that no monarch, however competent, could have been an effective autocrat. One way or another, major decision making power was going to have to be delegated. The ultimate question was how to do this without completely destroying Russian society. Even England, which was able to make the transition to a constitutional monarchy at an early and more opportune time, did not escape civil war. It's not at all clear to me that a "competent winner" of a tsar would have succeeded in making the transition.

    Now that the Commemoration of 100 years of the murder of Czar Nicholas and his family approaches and hundreds of thousands of pilgrims are expected in Yekaterinburg, you will see an increase in denunciations of the ‘incompetence, weakness, bloodthirstiness’ and what you have it and of justifications for his ‘deserved’ demise.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    For what they did to Russia, Nicholas and his wife deserved to be hanged after a fair trial. His children and servants weren’t guilty of anything, so their murder was a crime. There is Russian joke that when a guy gets cutlets crawling with flies at a restaurant, he asks “can I please have cutlets separately and flies separately?” So, I suggest you keep cutlets separate from flies.
  298. @Mikhail

    It has nothing to do with his WW I experience but everything to do with what he stated in his February 4, 1931 piece. Stalin: “We are 50 or 100 years behind the advanced countries. We must make good this distance in 10 years. Either we do it, or we shall go under”. He was buying time to the very end. Both purges (albeit they were overemphasized in the West) and institutional transformation of the Red Army played a huge role in him not to confront Germany.
     
    Vintage Sovok. Pre-Soviet Russia wasn't so comparatively backwards as many on the left are prone to exaggerate. I'm glad to encounter Soviet reared Russians who acknowledge this reality, which explains why the tricolor and two headed eagle have been readopted by post-Soviet Russia.

    Of course WW I and the Russian Civil War took a heavy toll on Russia. For accuracy sake, that aspect shouldn't be used to try to legitimize the before the revolution, there was nothing BS.

    Stalin's officer corps purges did hamper the Red Army's ability for a certain period. We saw how clumsy the Finnish campaign was carried out. Stalin apparently thought he could just send a large number of raw recruits to achieve victory. That kind of flippant thinking led to many more deaths than what was otherwise necessary to ensure Soviet strategic interests.

    On the other hand at around the same time, the Japanese were taken more seriously than the Finns on account of Russia's 1905 experience with Japan. Concerning the Far-east, I suspect that Soviet forces father away from the Kremlin were better protected from the foolish purges.

    Vintage Sovok.

    Do you need e-mail and address of US Army Colonel David Glantz? Since I narrated him to you almost verbatim from his 2015 edition (with Jonathan House) of When Titans Clashed. I am sure both of them, American officers with serious service and military-academic experience will be thrilled to learn that they are “vintage sovoks”. But then again, it is difficult to argue with people who do not even understand what Sovok means. I’ll give you a hint–it has a lot to do, among many, with Shukshin literature, as an example.

    On the other hand at around the same time, the Japanese were taken more seriously than the Finns on account of Russia’s 1905 experience with Japan. Concerning the Far-east, I suspect that Soviet forces father away from the Kremlin were better protected from the foolish purges.

    We may recall Khalhin-Gol, have you heard of it? As per purges–recall who was in charge of military at Far East and why was he persecuted.

    I’m glad to encounter Soviet reared Russians who acknowledge this reality, which explains why the tricolor and two headed eagle have been readopted by post-Soviet Russia.

    Do you mean me? Have you ever encountered Operational Research (not to be mistaken with Campaign Study)? Do those, including operational art and strategy go under “tricolor and two headed eagle”(c), or do they go under Swastika? Last time I checked, with the exception of contemporary Western “military art (of BS)” those issues are not exactly related to outward symbols as much as to a combination of factors of industrial. scientific, operational and strategic nature. A rather universal language for Nazis, Communists, Monarchists, Maoists–you name it–of numbers, very-very many of them. That is why military academies and academies of general staffs have been invented.

    • Replies: @Mikhail

    We may recall Khalhin-Gol, have you heard of it? As per purges–recall who was in charge of military at Far East and why was he persecuted.
     
    I made reference to it. Two of the leading Soviet commanders of that campaign against Japan, Yakov Smushkevich and Grigori Shtern, were later purged (murdered), just before the Nazi attack on the USSR. Georgi Zhukov was also there in a lead role. Smushkevich and Shtern were later rehabilitated, along with quite a few other victims of Stalin's purges, that very much included the Soviet officer corps.

    For me and others, Sovok is used to describe overly Soviet nostalgic folks, whose trait includes a generally negative image of pre-Soviet Russia, which in turn is used as a basis to warrant the Soviet legacy.

    , @Thorfinnsson
    American officers aren't Sovoks for obvious reasons, but pretty much all of them past O-5 (and honestly, perhaps O-3) are worthless.

    Glantz of course is an excellent historian.
  299. @German_reader

    He and Solzhenitsyn were opposites of political “spectrum”
     
    That's interesting, I had no idea such conflicts existed. Thanks to you and to "AnonfromTN", that was informative.

    Shalamov was a Trotskyst and that’s why he was so much pumped up by the Trotsko-infested ‘West’ lefties.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    Like all talented and honest people, Shalamov is bigger than any labels you stick on him. Solzhenitsyn isn’t.
  300. @Seraphim
    Now that the Commemoration of 100 years of the murder of Czar Nicholas and his family approaches and hundreds of thousands of pilgrims are expected in Yekaterinburg, you will see an increase in denunciations of the 'incompetence, weakness, bloodthirstiness' and what you have it and of justifications for his 'deserved' demise.

    For what they did to Russia, Nicholas and his wife deserved to be hanged after a fair trial. His children and servants weren’t guilty of anything, so their murder was a crime. There is Russian joke that when a guy gets cutlets crawling with flies at a restaurant, he asks “can I please have cutlets separately and flies separately?” So, I suggest you keep cutlets separate from flies.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    Nicholas just wasn't cut for the position at the difficult point in time. That reality taints whatever sympathy I've for monarchism.

    I'm with Putin on Lenin. Stalin was a mass murdering bastard, who didn't win WW II. The peoples making up the USSR contributed greatly to the winning of that war.

  301. @Seraphim
    Shalamov was a Trotskyst and that's why he was so much pumped up by the Trotsko-infested 'West' lefties.

    Like all talented and honest people, Shalamov is bigger than any labels you stick on him. Solzhenitsyn isn’t.

  302. I have never had any doubt of the greatness of Solzhenitsyn.

    The most talented contemporaries of Solzhenitsyn, having been captivated by him as a writer, did not conceal their shock when they made the acquaintance of Solzhenitsyn the man. It seems the first to discern Solzhenitsyn’s magnanimity was the Russian poet and Nobel prize winner Anna Akhmatova. She said about him: “A bearer of light!… We had forgotten that such people exist… A surprising individual… A great man.”

    It also suited many Western intellectuals, who admired the October Revolution but felt that Stalin had betrayed it. In subsequent works, Solzhenitsyn made it clear that he opposed not only Stalin, but Lenin and the October Revolution. He even rejected the February Revolution. And he did not hesitate to write an open letter to the Soviet leadership setting forth his heterodox views. Thus, he earned the undying enmity not only of the Soviet regime, but also of the legions of Western intellectuals—many his erstwhile supporters—who were broadly sympathetic to the revolutionary cause and its secularizing aims. Once disgorged into Western exile, he faced incomprehension and derision for his failure to pay obeisance to secular materialism. His growing army of detractors, unable to allow the legitimacy of a worldview that contradicted their own, soon made him out to be an enemy of all freedom and progress. Solzhenitsyn remained utterly unfazed.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    It's more even than just that..religions teach that a person of "light" tends to attract resentment and hatred, at least initially, because he makes people uncomfortable, but he is ultimately embraced by the community.

    I am sure Solzhenitsyn will eventually be embraced by Russians. But it is common for saints to have a rough time of it, at least initially.
  303. @utu
    I have never had any doubt of the greatness of Solzhenitsyn.

    The most talented contemporaries of Solzhenitsyn, having been captivated by him as a writer, did not conceal their shock when they made the acquaintance of Solzhenitsyn the man. It seems the first to discern Solzhenitsyn’s magnanimity was the Russian poet and Nobel prize winner Anna Akhmatova. She said about him: “A bearer of light!… We had forgotten that such people exist… A surprising individual… A great man.”

    It also suited many Western intellectuals, who admired the October Revolution but felt that Stalin had betrayed it. In subsequent works, Solzhenitsyn made it clear that he opposed not only Stalin, but Lenin and the October Revolution. He even rejected the February Revolution. And he did not hesitate to write an open letter to the Soviet leadership setting forth his heterodox views. Thus, he earned the undying enmity not only of the Soviet regime, but also of the legions of Western intellectuals—many his erstwhile supporters—who were broadly sympathetic to the revolutionary cause and its secularizing aims. Once disgorged into Western exile, he faced incomprehension and derision for his failure to pay obeisance to secular materialism. His growing army of detractors, unable to allow the legitimacy of a worldview that contradicted their own, soon made him out to be an enemy of all freedom and progress. Solzhenitsyn remained utterly unfazed.

     

    It’s more even than just that..religions teach that a person of “light” tends to attract resentment and hatred, at least initially, because he makes people uncomfortable, but he is ultimately embraced by the community.

    I am sure Solzhenitsyn will eventually be embraced by Russians. But it is common for saints to have a rough time of it, at least initially.

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    Did you notice that saints are not the only kind of people having rough time of it? This fate is shared by traitors, fools, thieves, murderers, rapists, etc.
  304. Shalamov, while a great writer, seems to have had no redeeming message – he showed the human condition in its rawest state, stripped of all higher elements, and outside of any redeeming context.

    That’s why so many moderns prefer him to Solzhenitsyn. It’s a sign of the times. It could not be otherwise. John Gray cites him in this regard approvingly (I am generally a fan of Gray, but he has the limitations of all moderns).

    Shalamovs work is important, but lacking a moral dimension, its significance is limited. Bardon Karolian probably thinks he’s the equal of Shakespeare.

    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    Shalamovs work is important, but lacking a moral dimension
     
    You obviously didn't read Shalamov. You know all those his musings about the necessity of Destruction of Carthage and all that jazz. Obviously portraying Urki's and criminal world for what it was, especially their fake "attachments" to mother(s) or a fall of such people as former Opera singer, among many others. Or the last battle of Pugachov. Sure, no moral dimension whatsoever, wink-wink.
    , @utu

    Shalamov, while a great writer, seems to have had no redeeming message – he showed the human condition in its rawest state, stripped of all higher elements, and outside of any redeeming context.
     
    Shalamov was destroyed by the system and Solzhenitsyn transcended it. Shalamov fate was tragic while Solzhenitsyn was triumphant. It is because of people like Solzhenitsyn we know about people like Shalamov. Without the triumph of Solzhenitsyn all the Shalamovs of the USSR would be turned into the dust as it was planned and Martyanovs of the world would be happily moving around oblivious to the dust on which they walked.

    Why Solzhenitsyn did triumph? Was it luck like in Szymborska's poem


    It could have happened.

    It had to happen.

    It happened earlier. Later.

    Nearer. Farther off.

    It happened, but not to you.

    You were saved because you were the first.

    You were saved because you were the last.

    Alone. With others.

    On the right. The left.

    Because it was raining. Because of the shade.

    Because the day was sunny.

    You were in luck — there was a forest.

    You were in luck — there were no trees.

    You were in luck — a rake, a hook, a beam, a brake,

    A jamb, a turn, a quarter-inch, an instant . . .

    So you’re here? Still dizzy from

    another dodge, close shave, reprieve?

    One hole in the net and you slipped through?

    I couldn’t be more shocked or

    speechless.

    Listen,

    how your heart pounds inside me.
     

    Or rather it was his indomitable spirit of almost inhuman proportions. That he could have become a prophet on biblical scale. As if there was a touch of God.

    His survival was not just about survival. Like the character in The First Circle who decides to enter deeper circles of hell and abandon the relative safety and comfort of sharashka.

    Not sure why I brought up this poem. I do not really like it as I do not like Szymborska.

    , @Seraphim
    The Gulag Archipelago was "An Experiment in Literary Investigation ".
    Shalamov stories are a 'work of fiction'.

    “My writing is no more about camps that St-Exupéry's is about the sky or Melville's, about the sea. My stories are basically advice to an individual on how to act in a crowd... [To be] not just further to the left than the left, but also more real than reality itself. For blood to be true and nameless.”

    "The complete set of Kolyma Tales is based on two areas: personal experiences and fictional accounts of stories heard. He attempted to mix fact and fiction, which leads to the book being something of a historical novel. The style used is similar to Chekhov's, in which a story is told objectively and leaves the readers to make their own interpretations. Often brutal and shocking, the matter-of-fact style makes them appear more hard-hitting than using a sensationalist style. The stories are based around the life of the prisoners (political or professional) in the camp and their relations with the officials. We find accounts of prisoners who have become totally dispassionate, insane under the barbaric conditions, unemotionally murderous and suicidal" (Wikipedia - The Kolyma Tales).

    There are in no way more 'documentary' than The Gulag.

  305. @AaronB
    Shalamov, while a great writer, seems to have had no redeeming message - he showed the human condition in its rawest state, stripped of all higher elements, and outside of any redeeming context.

    That's why so many moderns prefer him to Solzhenitsyn. It's a sign of the times. It could not be otherw