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Articles by Nicholas Berdyaev

Translated by Fr. Stephen Janos

Chronological Coding by Year of Initial Publication and T. Klepinina Assigned #

1904 - 1909

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Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button
Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button
Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button
Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button
Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button
Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button
Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button
Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button
Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button
Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button

"Christ and the World

[Reply to V.V. Rozanox]"


Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button

"Catholic Modernism and

the Crisis of the

Contemporary Consciousness"


Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button
Nicholas Berdyaev Article Button


"A. S. Khomyakov as Philosopher (Centennial of Birth)" [1904-#110]

"The theoretical head of the Slavophils, A. S. Khomyakov, ought justly to be acknowledged as one of the most outstanding of Russian minds. The enormous mental abilities of Khomyakov were esteemed by his opponents of the time in the Westerniser camp. A man extraordinarily many-sided, a philosopher, a theologian, historian, a publicist and poet, Khomyakov was a conspicuous figure of the decade of the '40s, deeply endowed with brilliant talents. But amidst all this, Khomyakov is now neither known nor read. He is forgotten and without esteem."


"The Catechesis of Marxism" [1905-#115]

"There is need finally to greet the appearance in of the catechism of Marxist philosophy. Let there now be perused the remarkable book of Engels, Anti-Duering, which Beltov has so talentedly transposed into the Russian language. It seems almost that it is the sole dogmatic part of Marxist theology. Let us take a look at this baggage of dialectical materialism, almost the sole baggage, and then the legend concerning this great, this all radically transforming philosophic theory, ought finally to be tossed aside."

"Culture and Politics: Philosophy of Modern Russian History" [1905-#118]

"More than once already have they pointed to this, that Russia is the most strange, the most fantastic and wondrous land in the world. In it co-dwell the deepest contradictions: both an utmost religious lifestyle, and a cultural lack of lifestyle, barbarity. This indeed is the land of Dostoevsky, and in him was mirrored our most intimate, primal elements. Only in Russia could there be interwoven a profound and extreme religiosity together with an as yet unprecedented religious indifference and negativity, and the greatest literature in the world together with a barbaric contempt for all literary creativity; a wildly fanatical conservatism together with revolutionism, brought in the tither that swept Europe."


"K. Leont'ev - Philosopher of a Reactionary Romanticism" [1905-#120]

"There exist writers with an inexpressibly sad destiny, not acknowledged, not understood, attracting no one, dying in spiritual solitude, though bestown of talents, in mind, in originality they stand many heads above the acknowledged great. Such a one was Konstantin Leont’ev, a very imposing thinker, the sole imposing thinker from the conservative camp, and altogether indeed one of the most brilliant and original minds in Russian literature."


"Capital Punishment and Killing" [1906-#xxx]

"The blood which the Russian government is spilling, the murders which it is committing, cannot be adduced as under the juridical institution of capital punishment. This criminal institution long since already has been acknowledged as inexpedient by the science of criminal law, and long since already the moral conscience of mankind has been revolted by it."

"Regarding the History and Psychology of Russian Marxism" [1906-#126]

"It is of interest for us to trace the fate of the ideas of Marxism, a fate woeful and strange, since these ideas with their seeming triumph ultimately have gotten lost. Our Marxism not so long ago was a trend in ideas, full of vigor and youth—it gave an upsurge to mental inquiries, it prompted a respect for knowledge, it called forth a social science for deciding the fates of Russia, and seemingly introduced a certain cultural aspect into the barbaric norm of our intelligentsia. It fought against the old stereotypes, all the stuck in a rut aspect. Back then it was a struggle of ideas. But the god of historical irony transformed Marxism into a struggle of powers, gave it a grip on life, when the ideas of Marxism began to decay and unravel, when the two souls alive within classical Marxism — the scientifico-realist and the religio-utopian — separated and rose up in revolt each against the other."

"Concerning the Will of the People" [1906-#130]

"What is the will of the people? Where is one to seek its true expression and embodiment? Here is a question which assumes at present an extraordinary acuteness. Having suffered, lacerated by a will foreign and strange, our people thirst to live by its own will, through the self-accomplished expression of its will, by its self-accomplished embodiment in forms of a political existence."


"Russian God-Seekers" [1907-#131]

"A great pining, an incessant God-seeking, is lodged within the Russian soul, and it was expressed over the expanse of an entire century. The God-seekers reflected our spirit, rebellious and hostile to every philistinism. Almost the whole of Russian literature, the Russian great literature, is a living document, witnessing to this God-seeking, to an unquenchable spiritual thirst. There is something heart-rending and together with this tragic in the fate of the Russian God-seekers. They go unrecognized, misunderstood, spurned, they perish from the torments of their languishing."

"Nihilism on a Religious Soil" [1907-#135]

"K. P. Pobedonostsev is dead. With him there is so much connected. Together with him there grew up a whole epoch of Russian history, more so even than an epoch: in his person and in his deeds was clearly embodied the connection of Orthodoxy with state absolutism. Pobedonostsev was a remarkable type: a sincere ideologue of our historical nihilism, of the nihilistic attitude of the official Russian Church and of the state towards life."

"Decadentism and Mystical Realism" [1907-#138]

"Decadents readily pass themselves off as mystics, and frequently they express mystical pretensions. Russian decadentism especially gravitates towards mysticism; it speaks about the mystical. The approach is to jumble together decadentism and mysticism in certain literary circles, but the academicism and mystifications get entangled along the way and hinder the decadentism from passing over into an authentic, a real mysticism."


"Christ and the World (Reply to V. V. Rozanov)" [1908-#149]

"V.V. Rozanov is one of the greatest Russian prose writers, a genuine magician with the word. He frightens Christians, both the old and the new. They are embarrassed to have to ward off his blows; they consider him a very dangerous opponent of Christ, as though Christ could have dangerous opponents, as though the deed of Christ could be struck undeflectable blows."

"Catholic Modernism and the Crisis of the Contemporary Consciousness" [1908-#151]

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"Regarding a Certain Remarkable Book (O. Weininger: Sex and Character)" [1909-#157]

"Weininger is a son of the German spiritual culture, and in him is felt the spirit of Kant, of Schopenhauer, Schelling, R. Wagner, the spirit of German idealism and romanticism. But in him there is a profound difference from contemporary German culture and philosophy. The book of Weininger, the book of a 22 year old youth, is perhaps the most vivid manifestation of contemporary German culture; after Nietzsche there was nothing already in this fleeting culture so remarkable."

"Attempt at a Philosophical Justification of Christianity (Concerning the Book of V. Nesmelov, The Science  of Man" [1909-#158]

"The question about the possibility of faith, about its permissibility afront the judgment of reason, stands acutely again before human consciousness. The will and the heart of man draw him towards faith, but contemporary reason quite opposes itself to faith, as once formerly the pagan reason opposed itself, and for which the matter of Christ was folly. But is the matter of Christ genuinely, or is it facetiously, in the court of reason, and is this reason indeed genuine, which would invest itself with the almightiness of the supreme court?"

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