Leo Tolstoy : Father of Christian Anarchism

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(1828 - 1910)

Description

In 1861, during the second of his European tours, Tolstoy met with Proudhon, with whom he exchanged ideas. Inspired by the encounter, Tolstoy returned to Yasnaya Polyana to found thirteen schools that were the first attempt to implement a practical model of libertarian education.

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From : Anarchy Archives

Quotes

"...the dissemination of the truth in a society based on coercion was always hindered in one and the same manner, namely, those in power, feeling that the recognition of this truth would undermine their position, consciously or sometimes unconsciously perverted it by explanations and additions quite foreign to it, and also opposed it by open violence."

From : "A Letter to a Hindu: The Subjection of India- Its Cause and Cure," by Leo Tolstoy, With an Introduction by M. K. Gandhi, December 14th, 1908

"You are surprised that soldiers are taught that it is right to kill people in certain cases and in war, while in the books admitted to be holy by those who so teach, there is nothing like such a permission..."

From : "Letter to a Non-Commissioned Officer," by Leo Tolstoy, 1898

"The Government and all those of the upper classes near the Government who live by other people's work, need some means of dominating the workers, and find this means in the control of the army. Defense against foreign enemies is only an excuse. The German Government frightens its subjects about the Russians and the French; the French Government, frightens its people about the Germans; the Russian Government frightens its people about the French and the Germans; and that is the way with all Governments. But neither Germans nor Russians nor Frenchmen desire to fight their neighbors or other people; but, living in peace, they dread war more than anything else in the world."

From : "Letter to a Non-Commissioned Officer," by Leo Tolstoy, 1898

"There are people (we ourselves are such) who realize that our Government is very bad, and who struggle against it."

From : "A Letter to Russian Liberals," by Leo Tolstoy, August 31, O.S., 1896

"People who take part in Government, or work under its direction, may deceive themselves or their sympathizers by making a show of struggling; but those against whom they struggle (the Government) know quite well, by the strength of the resistance experienced, that these people are not really pulling, but are only pretending to."

From : "A Letter to Russian Liberals," by Leo Tolstoy, August 31, O.S., 1896

"It usually happens that when an idea which has been useful and even necessary in the past becomes superfluous, that idea, after a more or less prolonged struggle, yields its place to a new idea which was till then an ideal, but which thus becomes a present idea."

From : "Patriotism and Government," by Leo Tolstoy, May 10, o.s., 1900, part 2

"If, in former times, Governments were necessary to defend their people from other people's attacks, now, on the contrary, Governments artificially disturb the peace that exists between the nations, and provoke enmity among them."

From : "Patriotism and Government," by Leo Tolstoy, May 10, o.s., 1900, part 5

"It is necessary that men should understand things as they are, should call them by their right names, and should know that an army is an instrument for killing, and that the enrollment and management of an army -- the very things which Kings, Emperors, and Presidents occupy themselves with so self-confidently -- is a preparation for murder."

From : "'Thou Shalt Not Kill'," by Leo Tolstoy, August 8, o.s., 1900

"...for no social system can be durable or stable, under which the majority does not enjoy equal rights but is kept in a servile position, and is bound by exceptional laws. Only when the laboring majority have the same rights as other citizens, and are freed from shameful disabilities, is a firm order of society possible."

From : "To the Czar and His Assistants," by Leo Tolstoy, March 15, o.s., 1901

"Only by recognizing the land as just such an article of common possession as the sun and air will you be able, without bias and justly, to establish the ownership of land among all men, according to any of the existing projects or according to some new project composed or chosen by you in common."

From : "To the Working People," by Leo Tolstoy, Yasnaya Polyana, 1902

Biography


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About Leo Tolstoy

Count Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy[note 1] (/ˈtoʊlstɔɪ, ˈtɒl-/; Russian: Лев Николаевич Толстой,[note 2] tr. Lev Nikoláyevich Tolstóy, IPA: [lʲef nʲɪkɐˈla(j)ɪvʲɪtɕ tɐlˈstoj] (About this soundlisten); 9 September, [O.S. 28 August] 1828 – 20 November, [O.S. 7 November] 1910), usually referred to in English as Leo Tolstoy, was a Russian writer who is regarded as one of the greatest authors of all time. He received nominations for the Nobel Prize in Literature every year from 1902 to 1906 and for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1901, 1902, and 1909. That he never won is a major controversy.

Born to an aristocratic Russian family in 1828, Tolstoy is best known for the novels War and Peace (1869) and Anna Karenina (1878), often cited as pinnacles of realist fiction. He first achieved literary acclaim in his twenties with his semi-autobiographical trilogy, Childhood, Boyhood, and Youth (1852–1856), and Sevastopol Sketches (1855), based upon his experiences in the Crimean War. His fiction includes dozens of short stories and several novellas such as The Death of Ivan Ilyich (1886), Family Happiness (1859), and Hadji Murad (1912). He also wrote plays and numerous philosophical essays.

In the 1870s, Tolstoy experienced a profound moral crisis, followed by what he regarded as an equally profound spiritual awakening, as outlined in his non-fiction work A Confession (1882). His literal interpretation of the ethical teachings of Jesus, centering on the Sermon on the Mount, caused him to become a fervent Christian anarchist and pacifist. His ideas on nonviolent resistance, expressed in such works as The Kingdom of God Is Within You (1894), had a profound impact on such pivotal 20th-century figures as Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. He also became a dedicated advocate of Georgism, the economic philosophy of Henry George, which he incorporated into his writing, particularly Resurrection (1899).

Source: Wikipedia.org

Leo Tolstoy was born September 9, 1828 at Yasnaya Polyana in Tula, Russia. Fourth child of Countess Mariya Tolstaya, Tolstoy was born of old Russian nobility. As such, social pressures forced him to attend university and proceed on trek to becoming an upstanding member of upper-class Russian society.

In 1844, Tolstoy ceased his studies at Kazan University. He then spent a period of about seven years bouncing between his hometown and St. Petersburg accruing an impressive gambling debt.

In 1851, Tolstoy and his brother joined the army. Sometime around then, Tolstoy began writing.

In 1857, attempting to leave Russian high-society behind, Tolstoy took the first of his two tours through Europe. This act was an attempt to escape Russian political oppression, and was also caried out by such anarchists as Kropotkin and Bakunin.

In 1861, during the second of his European tours, Tolstoy met with Proudhon, with whom he exchanged ideas. Inspired by the encounter, Tolstoy returned to Yasnaya Polyana to found thirteen schools that were the first attempt to implement a practical model of libertarian education.

In 1862, Tolstoy married Sophia Andreevna Bers. The early years of the marriage marked a period of great joy during Tolstoy's life and facilitated the composition of both War and Peace and Anna Karenina. Sadly, the marriage deteriorated into one of great unhappiness in later years, as Tolstoy's ideas grew more radical and his attempts to distance himself from his wealth (both earned and inherited) became more radical.

In 1910, Tolstoy died of pneumonia at Astapovo station after abandoning his family and wealth in the middle of winter to take up the path of wandering ascetic.

From : Anarchy Archives

Works

This person has authored 1,664 documents, with 8,741,598 words or 53,534,302 characters.

"--And you say that a man cannot, of himself, understand what is good and evil; that it is all environment, that the environment swamps the man. But I believe it is all chance. Take my own case . . ." Thus spoke our excellent friend, Ivan Vasilievich, after a conversation between us on the impossibility of improving individual character without a change of the conditions under which men live. Nobody had actually said that one could not of oneself understand good and evil; but it was a habit of Ivan Vasilievich to answer in this way the thoughts aroused in his own mind by conversation, and to illustrate those thoughts by relating incidents in his own life. He often quite forgot the reason for his story in telling it; but he always... (From : Wikisource.org.)
Chapter I Five wealthy young men had come, after two in the morning, to amuse themselves at a small Petersburg party. Much champagne had been drunk, most of the men were very young, the girls were pretty, the piano and violin indefatigably played one polka after another, and dancing and noise went on unceasingly: yet for some reason it was dull and awkward, and, as often happens, everybody felt that it was all unnecessary and was not the thing. Several times they tried to get things going, but forced merriment was worse even than boredom. One of the five young men, more dissatisfied than the others with himself, with the others, and with the whole evening, rose with a feeling of disgust, found his had, and went o... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Alyosha was the younger brother. He was called the Pot, because his mother had once sent him with a pot of milk to the deacon's wife, and he had stumbled against something and broken it. His mother had beaten him, and the children had teased him. Since then he was nicknamed the Pot. Alyosha was a tiny, thin little fellow, with ears like wings, and a huge nose. "Alyosha has a nose that looks like a dog on a hill!" the children used to call after him. Alyosha went to the village school, but was not good at lessons; besides, there was so little time to learn. His elder brother was in town, working for a merchant, so Alyosha had to help his father from a very early age. When he was no more than six he used to go out with the girls to watch the ... (From : Wikisource.org.)
There are such creatures who all live off the land, but in order for them to become harder as possible to feed, they divided their land so that only those who are not working on it can use it, but those who work, they cannot use it and suffer and die generations after generations from the inability to feed off the land. Besides, these creatures elect one family or several families out of many and renounce their will and reason for the sake of slavish obedience to everything that the elect ones will want to do to them. And the elect ones happen to be the most evil and stupid of all. But the creatures who elect and submit, praise them in every way. These creatures speak different languages, unintelligible to each other. But instead of trying ... (From : Wikisource.org.)
[The adventure here narrated is one that happened to Tolstoy himself in 1858. More than twenty years later he gave up hunting, on humanitarian grounds.] We were out on a bear-hunting expedition. My comrade had shot at a bear, but only gave him a flesh-wound. There were traces of blood on the snow, but the bear had got away. We all collected in a group in the forest, to decide whether we ought to go after the bear at once, or wait two or three days till he should settle down again. We asked the peasant bear-drivers whether it would be possible to get round the bear that day. 'No. It's impossible,' said an old bear-driver. 'You must let the bear quiet down. In five days' time it will be possible to surround him; but if you followed him now... (From : Wikisource.org.)
“BETHINK YOURSELVES!” “This is your hour, and the power of darkness.”—Luke xxii. 53. I Again war. Again sufferings, necessary to nobody, utterly uncalled for; again fraud; again the universal stupefaction and brutalization of men. Men who are separated from each other by thousands of miles, hundreds of thousands of such men (on the one hand—Buddhists, whose law forbids the killing, not only of men, but of animals; on the other hand—Christians, professing the law of brotherhood and love) like wild beasts on land and on sea are seeking out each other, in order to kill, torture, and mutilate each other in the most cruel way. What can this be? Is it a dream or a reality? Something is t... (From : Gutenberg.org.)
Translated by C.J. HOGARTH CONTENTS I.   A SLOW JOURNEY II.   THE THUNDERSTORM III.   A NEW POINT OF VIEW IV.   IN MOSCOW V.   MY ELDER BROTHER VI.   MASHA VII.   SMALL SHOT VIII.   KARL IVANITCH’S HISTORY IX.   CONTINUATION OF KARL’S NARRATIVE X.   CONCLUSION OF KARL’S NARRATIVE XI.   ONE MARK ONLY XII.   THE KEY XIII.   THE TRAITRESS XIV.   THE RETRIBUTION XV. (From : Gutenberg.org.)
I. A gentleman of the name of Zhilin was serving in the Caucasus as an officer. One day he received a letter from home. His aged mother wrote to him: "I am growing old and should like to see my dear little son before I die. Come to me, I pray you, if it be only to bury me, and then in God's name enter the service again. And I have found for you a nice bride besides; she is sensible, good, and has property. You may fall in love with her perhaps, and you may marry her and be able to retire." Zhilin fell a musing: "Yes, indeed, the old lady has been ailing lately, she might never live to see me. Yes, I'll go, and if the girl is nice I may marry her into the bargain." So he went to his colonel, obtained leave of absence, took leave of hi... (From : Wikisource.org.)
CHARACTERS AKULÍNA. An old woman of seventy, brisk, dignified, old-fashioned. MICHAEL. Her son, thirty-five years old, passionate, self-satisfied, vain and strong. MARTHA. Her daughter-in-law, a grumbler, speaks much and rapidly. PARÁSHKA. Ten years old, daughter of Martha and Michael. TARÁS. The village elder's assistant, speaks slowly and gives himself airs. A TRAMP. Forty years old, restless, thin, speaks impressively; when drunk is particularly free and easy. IGNÁT. Forty years old, a buffoon, merry and stupid.   305 THE CAUSE OF IT ALL   ACT I Autumn. A peasant's hut, with a small room partitioned off. Akulína sits spinning; Martha the housewif... (From : Gutenberg.org.)
Translated by C.J. Hogarth CONTENTS I   THE TUTOR, KARL IVANITCH II    MAMMA III    PAPA IV    LESSONS V    THE IDIOT VI    PREPARATIONS FOR THE CHASE VII    THE HUNT VIII    WE PLAY GAMES IX    A FIRST ESSAY IN LOVE X    THE SORT OF MAN MY FATHER WAS XI    IN THE DRAWING-ROOM AND THE STUDY XII    GRISHA XIII    NATALIA SAVISHNA XIV    THE PARTING XV &n (From : Gutenberg.org.)
Faith is that which invests life with meaning, that which gives strength and direction to life. Every living man discovers this meaning and lives upon it. Having failed to discover it, he dies. In his search, man avails himself of all that humanity has achieved. All that has been achieved by humanity is called revelation. Revelation is that which helps man to comprehend the meaning of life. Such is the relation of man to faith. What a wonderful thing, then! Men appear, who toil unceasingly to make other people enjoy just this and no other form or revelation; who cannot rest until others accept their, just their form of revelation, and who damn, execute, kill, as many as they can of the dissenters. Others do the same: damn, e... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
In the town of Surat, in India, was a coffee-house where many travelers and foreigners from all parts of the world met and conversed. One day a learned Persian theologian visited this coffee-house. He was a man who had spent his life studying the nature of the Deity, and reading and writing books upon the subject. He had thought, read, and written so much about God, that eventually he lost his wits, became quite confused, and ceased even to believe in the existence of a God. The Shah, hearing of this, had banished him from Persia. After having argued all his life about the First Cause, this unfortunate theologian had ended by quite perplexing himself, and instead of understanding that he had lost his own reason, he began to think that the... (From : Wikisource.org.)
Once some guests were gathered in a rich man's home, and it happened that a serious conversation about life arose. They talked about persons absent and persons present, and they could not hit upon a single one contented with his life. Not only did each one find something to complain of in his fortune, but there was not one who would consider that he was living as a Christian ought to live. All confessed that they were living worldly lives, concerned only about themselves and their families, thinking little about their neighbors, and still less about God. Thus talked the guests, and all agreed in blaming themselves for their godless, unchristian lives. " Then why do we live so ? " cried one youth. " Why do we... (From : Wikisource.org.)
This morning I underwent a medical examination in the government council room. The opinions of the doctors were divided. They argued among themselves and came at last to the conclusion that I was not mad. But this was due to the fact that I tried hard during the examination not to give myself away. I was afraid of being sent to the lunatic asylum, where I would not be able to go on with the mad undertaking I have on my hands. They pronounced me subject to fits of excitement, and something else, too, but nevertheless of sound mind. The doctor prescribed a certain treatment, and assured me that by following his directions my trouble would completely disappear. Imagine, all that torments me disappearing completely! Oh, there is nothing I would... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
CHAPTER I. The Old Horse We had an old, old man, Pimen Timofeitch. He was ninety years of age. He lived at his grand- son’s house, but did no work. His back was bent ; he walked with a stick, and found it hard to drag one leg after the other. All of his teeth were gone ; his face was wrinkled ; his lower lip trembled. When he walked and when he talked, he had no control over his lips, so that it was impossible to make out what he was saying. There were four brothers of us, and we all liked to ride horseback ; but we had no gentle horses fit for us to ride. We were permitted to ride only on one old horse whose name was Voronok. [1] One time mother gave us permission to have a ride, and we all ran with our tutor to ... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
I In Gospel language "the age" and "the end of the age" does not signify the end and beginning of a century, but the end of one view of life, of one faith, of one method of social intercourse between men, and the commencement of another view of life, another faith, another method of social intercourse. [...] Every revolution begins when Society has outgrown the view of life on which the existing forms of social life were founded, when the contradictions between life such as it is, and life as it should be, and might be, become so evident to the majority that they feel the impossibility of continuing existence under former conditions. The revolution begins in that nation wherein the majority of men become conscious of this contradiction. ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
ACT I PEASANT [plowing. Looks up] It's noon. Time to unharness. Gee up, get along! Fagged out? Poor old beast! One more turn and back again, that will be the last furrow, and then dinner. It was a good idea to bring that chunk of bread with me. I'll not go home, but sit down by the well and have a bite and a rest, and Peggy can graze awhile. Then, with God's help, to work again, and the plowing will be done in good time. Enter Imp; hides behind a bush. IMP. See what a good fellow he is! Keeps calling on God. Wait a bit, friend,—you'll be calling on the Devil before long! I'll just take away his chunk. He'll miss it before long, and will begin to hunt for it. He'll be hungry, and then he'll swear and call on the D... (From : Gutenberg.org.)
Here are my first recollections (which I cannot reduce to order, not knowing what came first, what afterwards, while of some I know not whether they were dreams or reality). But here they are. I am tied down; I want to raise my arms, but I cannot do it, and I wail and weep and my cry is disagreeable to myself; but I cannot stop. It must be that some one stands bending over me, but I don’t remember who. And all this takes place in a semi-darkness. But I remember that there are two. My crying has an effect on them, they are alarmed at my cry, but they do not unloose me as I wish, and I cry louder than ever. It seems to them necessary (that is, that I be tied down), while I know that it is not necessary, and I want to prove it to ... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
To Gandhi. I have just received your very interesting letter, which gave me much pleasure. God help our dear brothers and coworkers in the Transvaal! Among us, too, this fight between gentleness and brutality, between humility and love and pride and violence, makes itself ever more strongly felt, especially in a sharp collision between religious duty and the State laws, expressed by refusals to perform military service. Such refusals occur more and more often. I wrote the 'Letter to a Hindu', and am very pleased to have it translated. The Moscow people will let you know the title of the book on Krishna. As regards 're-birth' I for my part should not omit anything, for I think that faith in a re-birth will never restrain mankind as... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
I am writing a history of yesterday not because yesterday was extraordinary in any way, for it might rather be called ordinary, but because I have long wished to trace the intimate side of life through an entire day. Only God knows how many diverse and diverting impressions, together with the thoughts awakened by them, occur in a single day. Obscure and confused they may be, but they are nevertheless comprehensible to our minds. If it were possible for me to recount them all so that I myself could read the tale with ease and so that others might read it as I do, a most instructive and amusing book would result; nor would there be ink enough in the world to write it, or typesetters to put it in print. But to get on with the story. I a... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
"Seven death sentences: two in Petersburg, one in Moscow, two in Penza, and two in Riga. Four executions: Two in Kherson, one in Vilna, one in Odessa." This, daily repeated in every newspaper and continued, not for weeks, not months, not for one year, but for years! And this in Russia, that same Russia where the people regard every criminal as a man to be pitied, and where till quite recently capital punishment was not recognized by law! I remember how proud I used to be of that, when talking to Western Europeans; but now for a second and even a third year, we have executions, executions, executions, unceasingly! I take up today's paper. To-day, the 9 May, it is something awful. The paper contains these few words: "To-d... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
INTRODUCTION Ronald Sampson Leo Tolstoy died in 1910. His fame was worldwide and in his own life-time unique. He was known as the author of War and Peace, Anna Karenina, Resurrection and a vast output of tales, plays, essays, books, letters. He was known as one who had never feared to incur the wrath of both Church and State by undermining their theological and political justifications and by exposing injustice. He was known for the sincerity with which he tried to renounce riches and possessions and to earn his bread by his own sweat rather than by the royalties he renounced. Above all, perhaps, he was revered for the quality of his prose and the towering moral strength it represented. “When Tolstoy dies,” said Ch... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Here is what my will should be, approximately. (Unless I write another, this shall be held valid): I ask that I be interred wherever I die, in the least expensive cemetery, if it is in a town, and in the simplest sort of coffin, like the coffin of a pauper. No flowers, no wreaths, no speeches. If possible, no clergy or mass. Nevertheless, if this should be disagreeable to those in charge of my obsequies, let there be the ordinary burial ceremony, but let it be the least expensive and the simplest possible. My obituary is not to be published in the newspapers. All my papers are to be given for revision to my wife, assisted by V. G. Chertkov and my daughters, Tatiana and Marie. (Erasures have been made by me. My... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Introduction by M. K. GANDHI The letter printed below is a translation of Tolstoy's letter written in Russian in reply to one from the Editor of Free Hindustan. After having passed from hand to hand, this letter at last came into my possession through a friend who asked me, as one much interested in Tolstoy's writings, whether I thought it worth publishing. I at once replied in the affirmative, and told him I should translate it myself into Gujarati and induce others' to translate and publish it in various Indian vernaculars. The letter as received by me was a type-written copy. It was therefore referred to the author, who confirmed it as his and kindly granted me permission to print it. To me, as a humble follower of that great t... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
You are surprised that soldiers are taught that it is right to kill people in certain cases and in war, while in the books admitted to be holy by those who so teach. there is nothing like such a permission, but, on the contrary, not only is all murder forbidden but all insulting of others is forbidden also, and we are told not to do to others what we do not wish done to us. And you ask, Is there not some fraud in all this? And if so, then for whose sake is it committed? Yes, there is a fraud, committed for the sake of those accustomed to live on the sweat and blood of other men, and who therefore have perverted, and still pervert, Christ's teaching, given to man for his good, but which has now, in its perverted form, become a chief sourc... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
I should be very glad to join you and your associates -whose work I know and appreciate- in standing up for the rights of the Literature Committee and opposing the enemies of popular education. But in the sphere in which you are working I see no way to resist them. My only consolation is that I, too, am constantly engaged in struggling against the same enemies of enlightenment, though in another manner. Concerning the special question with which you are preoccupied, I think that in place of the Literature Committee which has been prohibited, a number of other Literature Associations to pursue the same objects should be formed without consulting the Government and without asking permission from any censor. Let Government, if it likes, ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
Yesterday evening I arrived at Lucerne, and put up at the best inn there, the Schweitzerhof. "Lucerne, the chief city of the canton, situated on the shore of the Vierwaldstatter See," says Murray, "is one of the most romantic places of Switzerland: here cross three important highways, and it is only an hour's distance by steamboat to Mount Righi, from which is obtained one of the most magnificent views in the world." Whether that be true or no, other guides say the same thing, and consequently at Lucerne there are throngs of travelers of all nationalities, especially the English. The magnificent five-storied building of the Hotel Schweitzerhof is situated on the quay, at the very edge of the lake, where in olden times there used to be the... (From : Wikisource.org.)
Our division had been out in the field. The work in hand was accomplished: we had cut a way through the forest, and each day we were expecting from headquarters orders for our return to the fort. Our division of fieldpieces was stationed at the top of a steep mountain-crest which was terminated by the swift mountain-river Mechík, and had to command the plain that stretched before us. Here and there on this picturesque plain, out of the reach of gunshot, now and then, especially at evening, groups of mounted mountaineers showed themselves, attracted by curiosity to ride up and view the Russian camp. The evening was clear, mild, and fresh, as it is apt to be in December in the Caucasus; the sun was setting behind the steep chain of th... (From : Wikisource.org.)
The Anarchists are right in everything; in the negation of the existing order, and in the assertion that, without Authority, there could not be worse violence than that of Authority under existing conditions. They are mistaken only in thinking that Anarchy can be instituted by a [violent- Editor]revolution. 'To establish Anarchy'. 'Anarchy will be instituted'. But it will be instituted only by there being more and more people who do not require the protection of the governmental power, and by there being more and more people who will be ashamed of applying this power. 'The capitalistic organization will pass into the hands of workers, and then there will be no more oppression of these workers, and no unequal distribution of earnings' ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
(I) It was at the time when Christ opened to people his teaching. That teaching was so clear, and it was so easy and was so obviously going to liberate people from the evil that it was impossible not to accept it, and nothing could keep it from spreading around the whole world. And Beelzebub, the father and Lord of all devils, was alarmed. He clearly saw that his power over people will end forever, unless Christ denies his sermon. He was worried, but not discouraged, and incited Pharisees and Scribes, subdued to him, to insult and torment Christ as much possible and advised Christ’s disciples to run away and leave him alone. He hoped that the infamous punishment, humiliation, abandoning him by all the disciples and, finally, th... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
"The time is fast approaching when to call a man a patriot will be the deepest insult You can offer him. Patriotism now means advocating plunder in the interests of the privileged classes of the particular State system into which we have happened to be born." - E. BELFORT BAX. I. I have already several times expressed the thought that in our day the feeling of patriotism is an unnatural, irrational, and harmful feeling, and a cause of a great part of the ills from which mankind is suffering, and that, consequently, this feeling--should not be cultivated, as is now being done, but should, on the contrary, be suppressed and eradicated by all means available to rational men. Yet, strange to say--though it is undeniable that the universa... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
CHAPTER I. Polikey was a court man—one of the staff of servants belonging to the court household of a boyarinia (lady of the nobility). He held a very insignificant position on the estate, and lived in a rather poor, small house with his wife and children. The house was built by the deceased nobleman whose widow he still continued to serve, and may be described as follows: The four walls surrounding the one izba (room) were built of stone, and the interior was ten yards square. A Russian stove stood in the center, around which was a free passage. Each corner was fenced off as a separate enclosure to the extent of several feet, and the one nearest to the door (the smallest of all) was known as “Polikey’... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Why Tanya, have you dried up? You don't write to me at all, and I so love receiving letters from you, and you and have not yet replied to Levochka[1]'s crazy epistle, of which I did not understand a word. 23rd MarchThere, she began to write, and suddenly stopped, because she could not continue. And do you know why, Tanya dear? A strange thing has befallen her, and a still stranger thing has befallen me. As you know, like hte rest of us, she has always been made of flesh and blood, with all the advantages and disadvantages of that condition: she breathed, was warm and sometimes hot, blew her nose (and how loud!) and so on - and above all, she had control of her limbs, which - both arms and legs - could assume different positions: in a wo... (From : Wikisource.org.)
(Posthumous notes of the hermit, Fëdor Kuzmích, who died in Siberia in a hut belonging to Khrómov, the merchant, near the town of Tomsk, on the 20th January 1864) During the lifetime of the hermit Fëdor Kuzmích, who appeared in Siberia in 1836 and lived there in different parts for twenty-seven years, strange rumors were rife that he – concealing his real name and rank – was none other than Alexander the First. After his death these rumors became more definite and widespread. That he really was Alexander the First was believed during the reign of Alexander III not only by the common people, but also in Court circles and even by members of the Imperial family. Among others, the historian Schilder, ... (From : Wikisource.org.)
Well, it happened about three o'clock. The gentlemen were playing. There was the tall visitor, as our men called him. The prince was there,--the two are always together. The mustached barin was there; also the little hussar, Oliver, who was an actor; there was the Polish pan.[1] It was a pretty good crowd. The tall visitor and the prince were playing together. Now, here I was walking up and down around the billiard-table with my stick, keeping tally,--ten and forty-seven, twelve and forty-seven. Everybody knows it's our business to score. You don't get a chance to get a bite of anything, and you don't get to bed till two o'clock o' nights, but you're always being screamed at to bring the balls. I was keeping tally ; and I look, a... (From : Wikisource.org.)
INTRODUCTION By Aylmer Maude This little book shows, in a short, clear, and systematic manner, how the principle of Non-Resistance, about which Tolstoy has written so much, is related to economic and political life. The great majority of men, without knowing why, are constrained to labor long hours at tasks they dislike, and often to live in unhealthy conditions. It is not that man has so little control over nature that to obtain a subsistence it is necessary to work in this way, but because men have made laws about land, taxes, and property, which result in placing the great bulk of the people in conditions which compel them to labor thus, or go to the workhouse, or starve. It may be said that man's nature is so b... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
To people living in States founded upon violence, it seems that the abolition of the power of Government will necessarily involve the greatest of disasters. But the assertion that the degree of safety and welfare which men enjoy is ensured by State power is altogether an arbitrary one. We know those disasters and such welfare as exist among people living under State organization, but we do not know the position in which people would be were they to get clear of the State. If one takes into consideration the life of those small communities which happen to have lived and are living outside great States, such communities, whilst profiting from all the advantages of social organization, yet being free from State coercion, do not experien... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
'Thou shalt not kill.' -EXOD. xx. 13. 'The disciple is not above his master: but every one when he is perfected shall be as his master.' -LUKE vi. 40 'For all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.' -MATT xxvi. 52. 'Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them.' - MATT. vii. 12. When Kings are executed after trial, as in the case of Charles L, Louis XVI., and Maximilian of Mexico; or when they are killed in Court conspiracies, like. Peter Ill., Paul, and various Sultans, Shahs, and Khans-little is said about it; but when they are killed without a trial and without a Court conspiracy- as in the case of Henry IV. of France, Alexander ll., the Empress of Austria, the late ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
Transcriber's Notes: Blank pages have been eliminated. Variations in spelling and hyphenation have been left as in the original. A few typographical errors have been corrected. SIXPENCE NET Cloth Bound, 1s. net THREE DAYS IN THE VILLAGE AND OTHER SKETCHES BY LEO TOLSTOY These sketches are written in the style of Tolstoy's "Popular Stories and Legends," and give the reader various glimpses into modern village life in Russia THE FREE AGE PRESS Publisher: C. W. DANIEL 3 Amen Corner, London, E. C. THREE DAYS IN THE VILLAGE And Other Sketches No Rights Reserved THREE DAYS IN THE VILLAGE And Other SketchesWritten from September 1909 to July 1910 BY LEO TOLSTOY Translated by L. and A. Mau... (From : Gutenberg.org.)
It was Autumn. A carriage and a calesche were proceeding at a sharp trot along the high-road. In the carriage sat two women. One of them was the mistress, thin and pale. The other was the maid, smug, florid, and buxom. Her short dry tresses peeped forth from under her faded bonnet, her pretty hand in her torn glove readjusted them from time to time; her swelling bosom, covered by a rug, was full of the breath of health; her quick black eyes glanced at one moment out of the window at the scurrying fields, at another stared boldly at her mistress, or glanced uneasily at the corners of the carriage. Before the very nose of the waiting-maid the bonnet of her mistress, attached to the netting of the carriage, rocked to and fro; on her knees lay ... (From : Wikisource.org.)
It once occurred to a certain king, that if he always knew the right time to begin everything; if he knew who were the right people to listen to, and whom to avoid; and, above all, if he always knew what was the most important thing to do, he would never fail in anything he might undertake. And this thought having occurred to him, he had it proclaimed throughout his kingdom that he would give a great reward to any one who would teach him what was the right time for every action, and who were the most necessary people, and how he might know what was the most important thing to do. And learned men came to the King, but they all answered his questions differently. In reply to the first question, some said that to know the right time for eve... (From : Wikisource.org.)
Near the borders of France and Italy, on the shore of the Mediterranean Sea, lies a tiny little kingdom called Monaco. Many a small country town can boast more inhabitants than this kingdom, for there are only about seven thousand of them all told, and if all the land in the kingdom were divided there would not be an acre for each inhabitant. But in this toy kingdom there is a real kinglet; and he has a palace, and courtiers, and ministers, and a bishop, and generals, and an army. It is not a large army, only sixty men in all, but still it is an army. There were also taxes in this kingdom, as elsewhere: a tax on tobacco, and on wine and spirits, and a poll-tax. But though the people there drink and smoke as people do in other countries, th... (From : Wikisource.org.)
Again there are murders, again disturbances and slaughter in the streets, again we shall have executions, terror, false accusations, threats and anger on the one side; and hatred, thirst for vengeance, and readiness for self-sacrifice, on the other. Again all Russians are divided into two hostile camps, and are committing and preparing to commit the greatest crimes. Very possibly the disturbances that have now broken out may be suppressed, though it is also possible that the troops of soldiers and of police, on whom the Government place such reliance, may realize that they are being called on to commit the terrible crime of fratricide-and may refuse to obey. But even if the present disturbance is suppressed, it will not be extinguished, ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
"And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free" (John viii. 32). I have but little time left to live, and I should like before my death to tell you, working people, what I have been thinking about your oppressed condition and about those means which will help you to free yourselves from it. Maybe something of what I have been thinking (and I have been thinking much about it) will do you some good. I naturally turn to the Russian laborers, among whom I live and whom I know better than the laborers of any other country, but I hope that my remarks may not be useless to the laborers of other countries as well. Every one who has eyes and a heart sees that you, working men, are obliged to pass your lives in want ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
It was in the reign of the Roman Emperor Trajan, a century after the birth of Christ. It was at the time when the disciples of Christ's disciples were still living, and the Christians faithfully observed the laws of the Master as it is related in the Acts : And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul ; neither said any of them that aught of the things which he possessed was his own ; but they had all things common. And with great power gave the Apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus ; and great grace was upon them all. Neither was there any among them that lacked; for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them and brought the prices of the... (From : Wikisource.org.)
In the city lived the shoemaker, Martuin Avdyeitch. He lived in a basement, in a little room with one window. The window looked out on the street. Through the window he used to watch the people passing by; although only their feet could be seen, yet by the boots, Martuin Avdyeitch recognized the people. Martuin Avdyeitch had lived long in one place, and had many acquaintances. Few pairs of boots in his district had not been in his hands once and again. Some he would half-sole, some he would patch, some he would stitch around, and occasionally he would also put on new uppers. And through the window he often recognized his work. Avdyeitch had plenty to do, because he was a faithful workman, used good material, did not make exorbitant c... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
This is a legend current among the South American Indians. God, say they, at first made men so that they had no need to work: they needed neither houses, nor clothes, nor food, and they all lived till they were a hundred, and did not know what illness was. When, after some time, God looked to see how people were living, he saw that instead of being happy in their life, they had quarreled with one another, and, each caring for himself, had brought matters to such a pass that far from enjoying life, they cursed it. Then God said to himself: 'This comes of their living separately, each for himself.' And to change this state of things, God so arranged matters that it became impossible for people to live without working. To avoid suffering fr... (From : Wikisource.org.)

Chronology

September 09, 1828 :
Birth Day.

November 20, 1910 :
Death Day.

November 16, 2016 ; 4:52:14 PM (America/Los_Angeles) :
Added to https://www.RevoltLib.com.

May 06, 2021 ; 6:15:00 PM (America/Los_Angeles) :
Last Updated on https://www.RevoltLib.com.

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