Voices from Russia

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

28 June 2011. A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words… Even Fido Knows The Score!

Filed under: EU,Greece and Greeks,politics — 01varvara @ 00.00

A dog defies the Greek riot police… will the PASOK government ram through its austerity measures? The rich partied and prospered in the “Fat Years”… now, they demand that ordinary folks pay the bill. What’s wrong with that picture? Even Fido knows the score! Lift your leg at ’em, doggie! God willing, the time is soon for the Greek cops to emulate their Egyptian counterparts and refuse to follow the oligarchs’ orders… but how much longer? God only knows…



Patriarch Kirill Called the Peoples of Russia, the Ukraine, and Byelorussia to Spiritual Unity

Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev (1946- ) of Moscow and all the Russias


His Holiness hoped that the MP would build a church at the point where the borders of the three states meet…

On Saturday, Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias opened the Slavic Unity 2011 International Festival at the village of Klimovo in Bryansk Oblast. “This festival, unlike many others, didn’t just drop down from above, it wasn’t organised using State resources, it arose from the inner need of our peoples to meet every year on this place to feel close to each other, in order to demonstrate our unity”, His Holiness said at the event’s opening ceremony. He noted that although he “fully respects the choices of each national government”, he makes a daily prayer that we maintain “the unity of our faith, the unity of our Church, and the unity of our cultural and spiritual values, and the unity of our three fraternal peoples. Today, there are three sovereign states, Byelorussia, Russia, and the Ukraine. With full respect for the sovereignty and the choice of our peoples, we’ll never stop repeating that these three states have a common spiritual, religious, and cultural tradition, we have a common and unified foundation, and we’re building three houses on this general and unified foundation”, Patriarch Kirill. He urged the peoples in these three countries to maintain this common foundation, saying, “The welfare of every people and every country depends on how strong its historical foundations are and how capable they are of withstanding trials”.


A vid on Slavic unity… if you think we’re untermenchtumen, zapadniki… please, do think again!


The Friendship Monument at the meeting point of the border of three states was the site of the festival, which brought together about 100,000 Russians, Byelorussians, and Ukrainians. Patriarch Kirill arrived by helicopter, the governors and ruling bishops of Bryansk, Smolensk, Gomel, and Chernigov Oblasts formally greeted him. On the same day, the Patriarch met with the leaders and the ruling bishops of the border regions of Russia, the Ukraine, and Byelorussia. He thought that there are many possible activities that people in the border regions ought to carry out, in particular, joint worship services and public observances, new pilgrimage routes, the transference of holy things from place to place, and joint work in spiritual formation, education, social service, and youth work. His Holiness hoped that the MP would build a church at the point where the borders of the three states meet, “in an area of neutral ground”, so, he proposed the establishment of a Board of Trustees consisting of the local ruling bishops, leading government figures from the border zone, and prominent businessmen from the three countries involved. In 1995, a cornerstone was laid for the proposed church.

27 June 2011



Editor’s Note:

Note well that KMG calls for the spiritual unity of the Russian, Byelorussian, and Ukrainian peoples. The Church Slavonic language is an exterior sign of that unity. We’re not abandoning it… that’s why we’re bringing it up to date. It’s the banner of our Unity… it’s the flower of our One Local Church. Loudmouthed konvertsy and Renovationist pseudo-scholars screaming for this-or-that change can all eat shit and die (it’s time to put an end to their revolting mewling… accept the Church as She Is and Has Been or leave for purer and “greener pastures”, I say). Ordinary folks know why we keep Slavonic… it’s a sign that we’re One and Unified. Trust me… there’s gonna be NO change to such things as the Our Father and the Heavenly King… everybody knows ‘em by heart… and that’s that. As for the Matins and Vespers texts, they’re up for revision; nobody has a heartfelt affection for their wording… that’s the way of it, simply put.

The MP is “a house of many mansions”… that’s why we keep Slavonic (even those of us who speak non-Slavic languages should know a little of it, as a sign of unity, as a mark of our being part of the family of the Mother Church of Moscow). Ordinary folks have no problem with this concept… ask any baba or dede (hell… ask the po-nashemu guys from PA… they’ll give ya the real deal), they’d set you straight. Don’t ask windbag scholars… they’re full of themselves, stuffed with oddball notions that are airy-fairy BS… chock fulla beans, if you ask me.

Let’s keep our Unity as Russian Orthodox Christians. His Holiness is right to call us to such… God Wills It!


Fr Vsevolod Chaplin Insisted that the Church has the Right to Issue a Moral Evaluation on Secular Affairs, Including the Economy


Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin, the head of the MP Synodal Department for Church and Society Relations, stressed that Orthodox people will always call a spade a spade, labelling actions moral or immoral, including in the business world. Speaking at a Russian-Italian conference at the Pokrovsky Gates cultural centre in Moscow, The Economy Needs Ethical Regulators, he said, “Of course, anything that affects people, anything that affects their lives and daily bread, the well-being of their families, and the future of their societies, concerns believers, and the Church, as well . In line with the entire Christian tradition, I fundamentally disagree with those economic pundits that say it’s not germane for the Church or believers to comment on the economy… only economists and those actively involved in top-level business decisions can do so. Just the other day, the new leader of the right-liberal faction {“conservative” in the USA: editor} Just Cause (Правого дела), the businessman Mikhail Prokhorov, said that the Church’s sphere is religious or spiritual life, and that [laypeople] should take care of worldly affairs, that’s what he said. It’s difficult for us to agree to this, because if a businessman can enter politics, to try to solve society’s problems, then, it’s just as fair if believers… clergy, monastics, laypeople, including those in business… offer society their opinion on what they believe is necessary, especially in the moral sphere, including morality in business. Another prominent leader of the Just Cause faction, Leonid Gozman, recently addressed the same topic, he’s an atheist, and a well-known critic of religious influence on society. Accordingly, [Gozman] just said, in a critical address at a World Russian People’s Congress (VRNS) meeting, that the Church should speak more on societal injustice and problems [and not on business affairs]. In particular, he referred to issues about social policy. Lordy, at least on this issue, Mr Gozman, my old critic, my opponent, appears to have come closer to my views”.

Fr Vsevolod categorically stated, “The Church should express that its views, they’re of particular relevance, it should speak on the morality or immorality of the actions of people and corporations, it should do so, regardless of whether they contributed money to gild the domes of this-or-that church or monastery. The ethical state of man and society directly affects the economy; let me give you one very simple example… you can easily lose any economic gain; you can lose things and money. It’s easy to kill a business, if you don’t know the ‘why’ of what you’re doing. You can justify business activity if the person who carries it out has higher goals, not just mere selfish interests, that is, it benefits both people and society, its benefits go beyond the earthly life of one person, people, or a single system, if its effects extend into eternity”. The Catholic charitable NGO Caritas, the Italian Catholic Foundation Christian Russia, and the Ss Kirill and Mefody Christian Education Centre are the co-founders of the Pokrovsky Gates cultural centre. The organisers of the conference The Economy Needs Ethical Regulators dedicated it to the 140th anniversary of the birth of the Italian priest Padre Luigi Sturzo (1971-1959), who organised Christian co-operatives.

28 June 2011



Editor’s Note:

Firstly, I must emphasise a point if you’re to understand statements by Russian political or religious figures properly. “Liberal”, in Russian terms, always refers to a faction or individual that advocates limited or no government regulation of a given activity. That is, they’re “conservatives” in loose untutored American colloquial usage. Of course, in formal academic terminology, modern Anglosphere “conservatives” are Neoliberals… they’re not Classical Conservatives at all. In fact, in their obsessive hatred of any regulation, they’re Classical 19th Century Liberals down to the last jot and tittle (that’s ironic, considering their loud hatred of “liberalism”). That is, the modern Neoliberal “conservative” worships a Classical Liberal Pantheon… William Gladstone, Thomas Malthus, Adam Smith, John Locke, David Ricardo, Jeremy Bentham, Friedrich Hayek, Milton Friedman, Ayn Rand, Margaret Thatcher, and Ronald Reagan. Trust me, they have nothing in common with One Nation Conservatives (“Red Tories”) such as Benjamin Disraeli, John Diefenbaker, Dwight D Eisenhower, Theodore Roosevelt, Otto Fürst von Bismarck, Graf Pyotr Stolypin, and Vladimir Putin. In short, when you see “Liberal” in a Russian discourse, substitute “conservative” for “liberal”, and you’ll see it clearly in Anglophone terms.

Secondly, most English-speaking people in the Anglosphere (USA, Canada, UK, Australia, and NZ) haven’t the foggiest notion of what “Christian Democracy” in continental terms means. Canadians could get a handle on it if I said that it’s similar to what the old Prairie Socred crédistes held… Americans could grasp it if I said that it’s close in spirit to New Deal Social Market ideals (with a Catholic twist to it, of course). This is important to the present discussion, for Padre Luigi Sturzo was one of the founding fathers of the movement, and Padre Sturzo was the inspiration for the conference where Fr Vsevolod gave the address (note well that Fr Vsevolod is no friend of Corporate Neoliberalism). Since there’s little known of this philosophy in the Anglosphere, here’s a précis of its ideology:

  • In common with Classical Conservatism, it upholds traditional moral values, it opposes secularisation, it believes in the evolutionary (as opposed to revolutionary) development of society, it emphasises law and order, and rejects totalitarianism
  • In contrast to reactionary Neoliberal “conservatism”, it’s open to change (for example, in the structure of society), and not necessarily supportive of the social status quo
  • In common with the Modern Left, it emphasises human rights and individual initiative
  • In contrast to both Neoliberal “conservatism” and the Modern Left, it rejects secularism, and emphasises that an individual is part of a community and they have duties towards it
  • In common with Socialism, it emphasises community, social solidarity, and support for a welfare state, and supports government regulation of market forces
  • In contrast to Socialism, most European Christian Democrats support a Social Market economy; they don’t advocate a doctrine of class struggle (this isn’t necessarily true of Latin American Christian Democracy, which has influences from Liberation Theology)

That is, it rejects the “conservative” ideology bruited about in the Anglosphere utterly and without reservation. The present US Republican Party (for instance) isn’t Conservative in the least… it doesn’t hold either Classical Conservatism or One Nation Conservatism. It’s a Radical Corporate Laissez Faire cabal… with naked and shameless worship of Almighty Mammon. The Almighty Dollar is the all-Good Ahura Mazda, Government is the all-Evil Ahriman, the Bottom Line is Sacred and Beyond Reproach, and Ayn Rand, Milton Friedman, and Ronald Reagan are Its Prophets and Holy Trinity. You can see why Fr Vsevolod spoke at this conference, and why he rejects Western Neoliberalism wholly, without compromise. The American Revolution was the first, greatest, and most thorough-going of the Three Great Godless Revolutions… the most successful of the lot. Make no mistake on it; the American Revolution established a secular anti-conservative state, one that’s had the tenets of Classical Liberalism at its core from the first. It was NEVER Christian in the least… at best, America’s State Religion was Enlightenment Deism… at worst, Practical Agnosticism/Veritable Atheism (much more than Militant Antitheist mid-20th century Marxist-Leninism, by the way) permeates America’s ideology.

The Church rejects Neoliberal Corporatism… that means that figures such as Paffhausen and Potapov are out of step with the larger Church, and we MUST oppose them, literally, for Christ’s sake. If any clergyman or layman attempts to ally the Church with the present US Republican Party (or any other Neoliberal faction or movement) and its policies, they attempt to ally the Church with brazen and shameless EVIL. Look at the GOP’s platform… no taxes on the rich… incessant and hellishly expensive foreign wars… wage and benefit cuts for ordinary people… higher tax rates for wage-earners and lower tax rates on lazy rentier investors… creating a police state (GWB formed the Department of Homeland (In)Security and the TSA, kids)… tolerating a 20 percent combined unemployment/underemployment rate (with 16 percent of the population dependent on government food subsidies). You can stand with His Holiness and Fr Vsevolod (along with Benedict XVI), who speak for the Spread of Economic Justice, or you can stand with Jonas Paffhausen, Victor Potapov, the First Profit of the Mormons, and the US Republican Party, who speak for the Accumulation of Soulless Capital. I stand for the Boundless Love of Christ, NOT for the Naked Selfish Greed of Ayn Rand. Therefore, it’s easy for me to choose up sides… where do you stand? Ponder it well before you decide… your eternal destiny DOES depend on it.


28 June 2011. No Comment Necessary… ‘Nuff Said… Good Sense on Church Slavonic

Filed under: Canada,Christian,Orthodox life,religious,Russian,USA — 01varvara @ 00.00

Chinese Russian Orthodox priest in Harbin (Harbin Prefecture. Heilongjiang Province) PRC giving out communion at liturgy


This was in Stokoe’s comboxes… it needs no commentary from me:

With all due politeness, it’s usually those that have come to the Orthodox church on a recent basis that don’t understand the relationship between Church Slavonic and the modern Slavic languages. Firstly, Slavonic IS very intelligible to most, if not all speakers of a given Slavic language. It’s true that the verb tenses are rather peculiar, there’s a paucity of plural vs singular grammatical structure, and that the direct order of a Slavonic sentence is quite different from that of a direct order of a Slavic-language sentence. Slavonic script is quite different from Cyrillic; however, any literate person from a Slavic-language speaking country quickly and easily masters it. Slavonic is nothing more than a transparent veil over the current modern language.

  1. Modern Bulgarian is closet to Slavonic in form and structure
  2. Modern Ukrainian is second-closet to Slavonic in form and structure
  3. Modern Serbian and modern Russian are slightly more removed from Slavonic, but are still within an easy grasp of any of its meaning
  4. Modern Polish and Czech, given the extreme Occidentalisation of these languages, are the most removed, particularly in terms of structure and meaning

In their collective and almost entire inability to understand Slavonic, the hierarchs and clergy of the OCA have strayed very, very far from the Church Ustav (Ordo), very, very far from a proper order of services, etc, etc. In their collective rush to be so American, they’ve lost all contact with the roots of the Orthodox Church that brave 19th century immigrants brought to the United States. There are very, very, very, very few OCA parishes where any given service resembles an Orthodox service at all. Frankly, they all run and look like Anglican services. There’s even one well-established OCA parish in eastern Canada, in a large city {I believe that the author means an OCA parish in Montréal (it’s a less than five-minute walk from a Métro stop, by the way, more’s the pity): editor}, that’s “dispensed” with an iconostas altogether. So, in the end, I’m simply saying, to be rather direct, that it’s usually converts that jump and scream about the usage of Slavonic, not those in whom the faith has been transmitted generation-through-generation. Thus, for all intents and purposes, the OCA is a church without a rudder of any kind.

26 June 2011

Xiao Lin


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