Essays of the Pharisee
Is it possible to judge the faith of others.
Recently, Deacon Andrei Kuraev drew attention to the words of President Putin during a straight line on the air of Echo of Moscow. Vladimir Vladimirovich was asked if he believed in God. What is remarkable, with the repeated public kissing of icons and holy relics, and the presence at divine services, the president never answered this question directly. And, in my opinion, it does him honor. Either – he does not want to lie, or – for him this is really a personal topic, as it is declared. Putin believes in God or does not believe it is his own business. I, perhaps, do not agree with Kuraev that a person should directly answer such a question. Ideally, yes. But people are different. The fact that he doesn’t shout about his faith in each interview rather emphasizes that this topic is important to him. The person in this position, in my opinion, simply cannot be an atheist.
Why am I doing all this? There is a category of people (and I, until recently, applied to it), for whom the hypocrisy of believers is a serious obstacle to God. In fact, if for His representatives on Earth themselves, faith is just camouflage for various needs, then why should I, a more or less successful atheist? And if the head of state is lying, then Orthodoxy is just a convenient ideology that helps control people, and all these Nevzorovs are right, and in general I have gone.
I can not say that for me personally this topic is finally closed. For me, every time I feel a personal pain when I find out that some priest was unworthy or that some official is Orthodox only in words. Although, again, it is impossible to paddle one size fits all – there are true religious servants of the people, such animals are found in nature too.
But nevertheless, nevertheless … How can it be, if you already do not trust every counter Orthodox one and already see the Pharisee in him beforehand? It may be necessary to clarify for yourself that relationships with God are always not static, but dynamic, and that they are individual for each person. For me, the example of Vysotsky is dear. Can we call him a believer? Someone says no, as Kobzon is in his book with the saying title “As before God.” Like, he wore a cross just like that. Someone, like the son of Vladimir Semenovich, says that yes, he interprets the same story with a cross in a completely different way – that his father would not have worn the Crucifixion just for beauty, he was not the right person. There are several personal testimonies of the bard baptism. So who is right?
It seems to me that spiritual growth of Vysotsky needs to be tracked according to his poems. I would not even treat a rather mocking work about a carpenter Joseph as unequivocally atheistic, especially since Vysotsky himself did not consider him as such. Well, his “I have something to sing before the Almighty,” I certainly will not call him in a poetic way. In this sense, the analogy with biblical studies is obvious to me. Did the Jews believe in the One God, or did they recognize other gods for a while? Here's how to answer this question? But the fact is that life does not give simple answers – they believed in the One, but there was a period when they worshiped not only Him, and, by the way, the Bible says so. Perhaps, what I learned during my time in the church (thanks in large part to biblical scholar Andrei Desnitsky) is not trying to see the world in black and white. Not all and not all can be described in precisely these shades. The world is much more interesting and difficult. And who knows, maybe in the next straight line, Putin’s answer will be more direct? ..
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