Voices from Russia

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

11 January 2012. Gleanings From My Mailbag…

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Editor’s Foreword:

I’m in italics; my interlocutors are in plain type.

BMD

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How do you know that Ireland’s “Bushmills” is the most popular whiskey on the former Soviet space?

Simple… I have Russian friends… and Nicky and I are fans of the sweet nectar… we bought a wee bottle for our celebration. 

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Since the 1860’s, people in this country haven’t known war directly, except for the small percentage that actually went over (even smaller in today’s wars, which are so much more technologically-driven). Those who call for war don’t know what they’re asking… or, maybe, they do, but they know that they sure as hell won’t have to pay the butcher’s bill.

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Gotcha… I’m no expert in Greek (I got bits n’ pieces)… which is why I didn’t translate the whole megillah before. The older I get, the easier it is to say, “Y’know, I don’t know that”… it’s LIBERATING…

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Whew, I’m glad I’m not the only one who likes Robert Lentz‘s paintings! I have seen nothing but attacks against him for years… I have Christ of the Desert hanging up in my house, with the Aramaic writing.

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“Orthosphere”… I LOVE IT! Why not mention how Huntington’s ideas were the same as Sergei Solovyov’s (yes, the father of the mad-hatter Vladimir Solovyov) in re “Civilisational Spheres”. This is the driving ideology behind the MP (Vsevolod Anatolyevich often uses it publicly)… it makes me wonder why KMG made the Western-leaning Blunder the editor of the ZhMP. My only thought is that he did so in order to keep the brat busy and out of real Church affairs. It does mean that one has to take statements in it with a block of salt. Interestingly enough, the Blunder doesn’t control Tserkovny Vestnik, which is more grounded and anti-Western.

Be good… you got the ol’ juices flowing again… remember, if you feel it, they will too. Writing isn’t simply a matter of putting words on paper; it’s an extension of your soul. Above all… keep it as short as you can. It’s the surest sign that you know your topic…

“God created wine… not grape juice… to gladden the heart of mankind”.

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“Coercion will avail us nothing…” the Centre learned that the hard way from Nikon Minin... all that coercion ever leads to is Avvakum Petrov and ever-splintering “Old Ritualism”. We ARE going to lose some, no doubt. It’s inevitable. A konvertsy-led “Rump OCA” (hat-tip to Alex Riggle) is very possible; Fathausen would be its “First Hierarch”… it would be the polar opposite of HOCNA… and, thus, exhibit many of the same properties. Eric Hoffer was correct… “The extreme right and the extreme left are identical, ‘we few are going tell you many what to do’”.  

Be good… Christmas is Saturday… Ded Moroz is making a special trip for you guys… break open the jug and cheer! We haven’t gotten our first real winter snow in Albany yet (unusual)… we did get a freak snowstorm in late October, but it only lasted a day or two. What’s more, there’s been no snow up in the Adirondacks or Berkshires (both low mountain regions) either. 

“Winter is acumen in… but when, God only knows…”

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I stand with you… the Red Rose symbol is beautiful…

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It’s only a thought… but do pass it on to any friends at the Centre… Fathausen’s a wily bastard… he’s not intelligent, but he’s clever enough to know how to put people off their guard. Remember, he’s Podmoshensky’s disciple… and he allows a bishop nicked by the coppers for DUI to serve (Peterson in CA). I think that you’re overoptimistic concerning this SOB… and I say so openly.

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As for Paffhausen, he’s obviously rather stupid and the Centre has his number. The policy is to give him rope. He will either save himself with the rope or else hang himself. Your guess is as good as mine which one, it all depends on the degree of his stupidity. I’m not over-optimistic; I’m just giving him extra rope… to do what he wants with it.

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I make typos of this sort DAILY. It’s a function of how much I write and how quickly I do it. It’s a disease endemic amongst journalists (it’s why I NEVER harp about typos… my own plate is full of ’em).

As for “Old Calendarism”, I’m told (and I believe), “You can’t deny anything that’s Orthodox. You can disagree with it, but you can’t deny it. The New Calendarists are still Orthodox… no Council has anathematised them. You can’t leave a parish simply because they use the New Calendar”. It’s one of those things that I wish I had said… that’s what humility is all about (it’s NOT being “meek n’ ‘umble”… such sorts are the most prideful servants of Satan out there). In any case, in the diaspora, sometimes one has no choice… and that’s that. I simply don’t go to my parish on Christmas… we go out of town for Orthodox Christmas (7 January). Oh… I make NO fuss about the calendar… it’s not my place to do such and I’ve no warrant from anyone to do it. That’s how I feel and that’s the way it is… fanatics of either side don’t like me.

As for Russophilia… I’d simply say that I deny nothing that’s truthful. That being said, to be Russian Orthodox is different from being Greek Orthodox. They’re two very different worlds… both are Orthodox, but both are what they are, and you can’t mix the two. I love the Greeks, and often worship with them, but they’re not “family”. If you look at the Christian art that’s survived from the First Millennium, you find a common spirit in all of it. That spirit lasted into the 14th century… you can see it in Giotto di Bondone (the greatest of the pre-Renaissance Christian artists)… look at his Betrayal and the Raising of Lazarus, and you’ll know what I mean. After that, Western art descended into sensuality and sentimentality. There were still “religious” depictions out there… but they were fewer and rarer.

I’d say that this artistic transformation marked the real acceptance of the Great Schism in the West. The West was Orthodox in spirit until the 14th century… and if you go to Spain, Italy, Latin America, Bavaria, or Québec, the ordinary believers are indistinguishable from their Orthodox confrères.  I’m NOT talking the theology that they parrot… I’m talking about the way they incarnate their faith… I’ve been to the shrine at Ste-Anne de Beaupré, I know (eating in a Quebecois diner, the waitresses all had funny stories of some of the more woolier “pilgrims”… and a waggish priest was eggin’ ’em on). Have you been to Santiago de Campostela? Then, you’d know what I’m talking about, too.

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Editor’s Afterword:

Thank God, for my “kitchen cabinet”, they keep me going; they keep me honest and they keep me focused on what’s truly important. I talked with Matushka Nina Stroyen today on the phone… she appeared to be doing well. She’s a wonderful sort, and I’m glad to have her in my life. Keep the faith… the night won’t last forever… it’ll just SEEM that way at times…

BMD

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11 January 2012. Thank God for Greek Friends… Here’s the Full Text in English of the Phanar’s Disgraceful Statement on Igumen Ephrem… It’s a Political MRE… a Lie Three Ways!

Here’s the “Master and Man”… Biden’s the “Master” and Bart’s the “Man” (as in “manservant”)… any questions?

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Today, 10 January 2012, the Holy and Sacred Synod convened in regular session under the presidency of His Holiness the Ecumenical Patriarch, they discussed, amongst other things, the matter regarding the detention of Ephrem, the Abbot of Vatopedi Monastery. On this matter, we communicate the following:

  1. His Holiness and the Holy and Sacred Synod around him express their sorrow over the situation that developed regarding the aforementioned matter.
  2. The Ecumenical Patriarchate, in accordance with its long-established practice, out of respect for the independence of the judiciary, at all times avoids every involvement on legal matters in process, given that, besides, it has no knowledge of the contents of this particular case file.
  3. The Ecumenical Patriarchate, in connection with statements issuing from sister Orthodox Churches on the aforementioned matter, reminds everyone that the Holy Mountain is its canonical territory, even though there are Orthodox monks of various nationalities there; this fact doesn’t make it a place of all-Orthodox character {even though it does have monks from all over the Orthosphere… the Phanar isn’t denying that, it’s a statement about jurisdictional matters only: editor}, and it doesn’t allow any form of interference in its affairs by other Autocephalous Churches.

From the Secretariat of the Holy and Sacred Synod

10 January 2012

http://fanarion.blogspot.com/2012/01/blog-post_5178.html

Editor’s Note:

All those who’ve served in the American forces know the old saw, “An MRE’s a lie three ways… it’s not a meal, it ain’t ready, and you shouldn’t eat it” (although nothing can be as downright BAD N’ NASTY as a can of C-rat beans n’ motherfuckers). This is of like composition. It’s a tissue of shameless lies from stem to stern. Firstly, the EP ain’t sorry… if they were, they’d protest the fact that the Greek rightwing pols walked away without consequence for their actions whilst an elder sits in the worst prison in Greece… not guilty of any crime. Besides that, the coppers nicked Igumen Ephrem, not his underlings; after all, they’re the jabronies who actually carried out the dirty deeds associated with this crook transaction. Secondly, for the Phanar to feign ignorance of the affair is sheer hypocrisy and it’s simply untrue. They don’t know of the Holy Community’s statement on the matter? C’mon, that’s Cloud-Cuckoo Land fantasy and all decent people laugh it to scorn and derision.

Yet, the meat of the matter is their third submission:

The Ecumenical Patriarchate, in connection with statements issuing from sister Orthodox Churches on the aforementioned matter, reminds everyone that the Holy Mountain is its canonical territory, even though there are Orthodox monks of various nationalities there; this fact doesn’t make it a place of all-Orthodox character {even though it does have monks from all over the Orthosphere… the Phanar isn’t denying that, it’s a statement about jurisdictional matters only: editor}, and it doesn’t allow any form of interference in its affairs by other Autocephalous Churches.

Izzat so? If the EP means it, if it’s not twisted goodthinker gobbledy-gook, that means that the EP has to get out of the Baltic States now… it has to hand over Rue Daru to the MP now… it has to disown the group of Osborne rebels in Britain now… it has to stop interfering in the Ukraine and in the Slavic diaspora in the USA and Canada now. Did you see that flash? That’s Bart & Co running like hell away from the truth. They don’t realise what they’ve said… yet.

The Phanar is a hireling of Langley… all this happened AFTER Biden went to the Phanar and gave them their orders. It’s clear that Biden demanded acquiescence in this affair, or the USA would cut off Bart’s stipend. He’s got no other sources of money outside of his Greek diaspora sugar-daddies… and the financial crisis has dried up that slop chute. It’s a rum go all the way ‘round. It does prove that Langley can force its pals in the Vatican and the Phanar to do its bidding. The Vatican isn’t totally under the Americans’ thumb, but I fear that the Phanar is… they have “no knowledge of this particular case file”… if you believe that one, I’ve got a lovely one-owner bridge on 59th Street… small bills, please, and NO PLASTIC OR CHEQUES…

BMD

11 January 2012. His Nibs Visited the Sick Kids on Christmas… He Knows Where He Belongs!

On 7 January 2012, the Feast of the Nativity of Our Lord God and Saviour Jesus Christ, Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias visited the Scientific-Practical Centre of Paediatric Medical Care, Department of Health, in Moscow. Say what you will, His Nibs NEVER forgets the sick kids on the holidays… or at any other time, either. Three Cheers for His Holiness… and Three Jeers for the creeps who attacked the reconciliation. One of these things is NOT like the other…

BMD

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Russian Inflation Hits Post-Soviet Low

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On Tuesday, the Federal State Statistics Service (Rosstat) reported that consumer price inflation in Russia hit a historic post-Soviet period low of 6.1 percent in 2011, citing final data. It stated, “The consumer price index was 100.4 percent in December (2011) and 106.1 percent for the full year, the lowest figure since 1991”. The Russian government has struggled for years to achieve low-digit inflation, in order to create a favourable investment climate and lure foreign investment. In 2010, annual inflation in Russia hit 8.8 percent due to the summer drought, exceeding forecasts and equalling the figure for 2009, the year of the global financial meltdown. In his state of the nation address in December, President Dmitri Medvedev said that a low rate of inflation was Russia’s major economic achievement in 2011. He said, “For the first time in modern Russian history, we’ve achieved an unprecedented low level of inflation of slightly over six percent”.

10 January 2012

RIA-Novosti

http://en.rian.ru/business/20120110/170696705.html

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