Voices from Russia

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

24 May 2016. The Orthosphere is ONE!

00 the orthosphere is one 240516


No, Oriental and Eastern Orthodox aren’t in communion, but we DO form a coherent historical, sociological, and cultural whole, especially, in relation to the heterodox confessions (and even more so in relation to the Antichristian “Evangelicals”). The Orthosphere exists… its cultural unity surpasses being out of communion and being theological opponents for centuries. Can we hope that our present disunity can find a solution in our time? God willing, it can!



Thursday, 2 April 2015

Official Remarks of DNR Chairman of the Government A V Zakharchenko on the Day of Unity of Russia and Belarus

00 russia 08. Mikhail Khmelko. The Unity of the Russian People. 1951


Dearest friends,

I wish to send my greetings to the Belarusian and Russian people on this landmark date, which is a shining symbol of a truly fraternal friendship… the Day of Unity of Belarus and Russia. For DNR residents, this day is also a holiday, based on the harmony between our peoples, who share a common rich spiritual and cultural heritage. It’s symbolic that we celebrate today’s feast on the eve of a historic date… the 70th anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War. At that crucial time, our common ancestors defended the freedom of their country in fierce battles; they freed the world from the threat of fascism, ensuring the future of many generations of our people. Today, we make every effort to preserve and pass on to our posterity the memory of the unprecedented feat (podvig) of our fathers’ and grandfathers’ generation of heroes. The Day of Unity is a vivid reminder of the fact that we constitute an invincible force capable of resisting any threat, able to adequately respond to any call, ONLY IF WE REMAIN UNITED. In these turbulent days, our people clearly understand how dangerous isolation is and how important and valuable our unity is. Today, life itself shows that our union is the only way that we can preserve the rich traditions of our Slavic peoples, allowing us to overcome all difficulties, so that we could achieve well-being for everyone in our common home. I sincerely wish prosperity, successful implementation of the boldest projects, and a peaceful heaven over our heads to our big family of fraternal Slavic peoples!

00 A V Zakharchenko 01. DNR. Donetsk. 24.03.15A V Zakharchenko

Chairman of the DNR Government

2 April 2015

Official Website DNR Council of Ministers of the People’s Soviet


Wednesday, 3 December 2014

The Shape of REAL Church Unity… What It IS… What It Is NOT

00 Ignoranus. It means stupid. 29.09.13


Recently, Rod Dreher wrote (another) ignorant and uninformed piece on Orthodoxy in the so-called American Conservative. In rebutting his rather crank and illusory thesis, I have to visit the topic of Orthodox Unity… rather, in specific, Russian Orthodox Unity in the American and Canadian diaspora. I did some asking around, and the answers were very interesting, indeed… they refuted Sir Roddie’s toddler bloviations to the max. There’s absolutely no danger of an “Episcopalianisation” of the Church. The SVS crowd has issued forth gnarly shit ever since the time of the Schmemann/Meyendorff duopoly. It hasn’t changed things one little bit. In fact, in recent years, I’ve noticed a return to Old School values and practises in the larger OCA… there’s no danger of an “Episcopalianisation” of the Church at all! Where does Sir Roddie get such a oddbod and specious notion? Firstly, like most konvertsy, he doesn’t have much contact with grounded ethnic Orthodox. However, how did he get off on such a tangent, though? One of the SVS Mafia wrote an idiotic piece on oca.org. I can tell you that half the Cabinet sent the link on to me. I replied to one Cabineteer:

I read it. It’s the usual SVS gobbledygook. All that it did was stir up the Monomoron crowd. I don’t know who’s worse… the SVS idiots or the Monomoron idiots. It has no relevance for REAL Russian Orthodox people. Right now, we should concentrate on helping our coreligionists in Novorossiya… sending “care packages” to the VSN fighters and Cossack National Guard on the front against the Uniates… Donetsk needs insulin… Lugansk needs antibiotics… not this shit. DON’T GET ME STARTED! They’re both a set of narcissistic asshats in my opinion!

Another Cabineteer piped up:

I don’t go [to Monomakhos] often; it’s the same old, same old. Stupid posts against Halloween, rightwing rhetoric as usual with many converts, and oddball cradle Orthodox beating the same drum. Seems they’re now attacking Fr Robert Arida. There are only about a dozen or so “regulars” who keep the shit flowing. I guess that they somehow figure that they’re “saving the Church”, and, as usual, they have the message wrong, they’re the ones who need saving.

Sir Roddie thinks that he’s defending Orthodoxy. He’s doing nothing of the sort. Firstly, he’s not qualified to make such a judgement… nor is any in his set qualified to do so. To come up with such a conclusion requires a professional background in theology, moreover, a professional background in Orthodox Theology. That is, one should have a kandidatura (or its equal) received from a canonical Eastern or Oriental Orthodox institution. I’m no professional theologian, I studied history, and I’ve practised as an internet journalist (“blogger”) for over seven years now. However, that does NOT make me a professional theologian. Sir Roddie has no theological education whatsoever either… his pal Whiteford doesn’t have a real Orthodox clerical seminary formation (no mean thing, that)… his pal Freddie M-G lacks any formal Orthodox grounding in theology as well. In short, none of them has any grounds to make such an absurd statement.

Moreover, one could argue that HIS position is Anglican to the bone (Continuing Anglican, to be precise). Sir Roddie has no faith in Christ’s Church. There’s no danger whatsoever of the Church “going Anglican”. I point up that the author of the Church’s condemnation of the Branch Theory was none other than Metropolitan Kirill Mikhailovich Gundyaev… the present Patriarch of Moscow and all the Russias. As the OCA is completely dependent on the Centre for canonicity, there’s no risk of it “going Anglican”. Indeed, Sir Roddie’s friend Freddie M-G is neck-deep in schmoozing up to Anglicans and Uniates (she’s never abandoned the Branch Theory in her heart-of-hearts). Friends of mine in the Balto area report to me that she’s a squiffy indifferentist who hangs out with Uniates and Continuing Anglicans. That is, Sir Roddie has more Anglican influence in his circle than there is in the Church at large. The Biter bit!

Of course, the retort is, “Well, if that’s wrong… what’s right?” Good question! Let’s unpack it. Firstly, we should focus on Russian Orthodox Unity in the American and Canadian Diasporas, not going on quixotic quests to tilt at non-existent windmills. Then, the obvious question is, “What does real unity look like?” Firstly, it won’t be logical or consistent. Nothing “really real” is, after all. Unity means that you must be in communion with those who you might not be in total agreement on this or that. For instance, wiser heads than mine have told me that the calendar issue is something left to the healing hand of time. A united Church could very well have parishes that use the Traditional Orthodox Calendar… and some that use the Catholic Calendar for fixed feasts. The only way that’s going to change is over time, without coercion, and without badgering.

To achieve unity, we must understand that we’re disunited and wounded. We can’t sweep it under the rug… we can’t pretend that there wasn’t discord and rancour between us. We can’t make up goofy myths… “It was all just a misunderstanding”… no way! We did have a hell of a fight… nasty things happened… scandal happened left-and-right. Many people suffered… at the hands of power-hungry clergy and fanatic laity. I know that the OCA and the ROCOR, in particular, would refuse Orthodox people communion just for being members of the “enemy” camp! I saw this with my own eyes… I heard the prideful rationalisations of the clergy involved. No one cared about the hurt people… there was PRINCIPLE involved!

Firstly, to grasp unity, we must keep in mind that we didn’t act in a Christ-like way for all-too-many years. Let’s keep it focused. We’re not talking about Catholics… we’re not talking about Anglicans… we’re not talking about sectarians… we’re talking about Eastern Orthodox Christians (let’s leave the Oriental Orthodox to the side for the moment)! These aren’t heretics! These aren’t schismatics! One of the true things that Fr A D Schmemann said was, “Uncanonical means that we don’t like you”. The differences between the OCA and the ROCOR are miniscule. To the outside world, both are “Russian Orthodox”… and that’s that. To the outsider, we ARE one body. That’s a fact… to the average American or Canadian, there’s “Russian Orthodox” and “Greek Orthodox”… nothing else. One of the things that could help us to achieve unity is to understand how those outside the Church see us. To them, we’re one body, with one liturgy, with one set of customs, with a single mindset. Of course, this upsets the earnest amongst us… but who’d deny that what I just said is true? Ergo, one reason why we should unite is that we’re already united!

Secondly, there is a palpable Russian Orthodox weltanschauung… despite Mr Dreher’s bloviations, there’s no danger of it becoming “Episcopalian”. The very ethos of Russian Orthodoxy and that of Anglicanism have no common ground whatsoever. That’s so obvious that it’s embarrassing to have to point it up. I don’t hate Anglicans or Anglicanism… they are what they are. Yet, no one would mistake the two, save for untutored and clueless neophytes such as Mr Dreher. All real and grounded Russian Orthodox, whether in the OCA, the ROCOR, or the MP, have an identical outlook, and that’s that. By the way, you don’t have to be “Russian” to be Russian Orthodox!

Thirdly, true unity means that seeming opposites will be in the same Church. Yes… Lazar Puhalo and Rod Dreher would be in the same Church… if they were Orthodox in their heart-of-hearts, they’d say, “I really don’t like them, but they’re in the Church!” That’s the CHRISTIAN response. You don’t have to like someone to be in communion with them. Look at the Mother Church! It has a spectrum of people in it, it isn’t just one little group of “true believers!” If we had a real united Church with a healthy mindset, well, New Skete, Jordanville, and SVS would all love one another (as they spit at one another… it isn’t a contradiction… “love” isn’t the same as “like”, after all). Look at the Mother Church… there’s real ferment and (sometimes) real Sturm und Drang, but everyone stays together.

True Unity is something that clueless toddlers like Dreher, JP, Freddie M-G, and Whiteford don’t even know about. Therefore, any dribbling about “Episcopalianisation” deserves nothing but derision for its stupidity and idiocy. It does give you the measure of the konvertsy to realise that the people that I just named are their heroes and paladins. We have true issues facing us… these children want to focus on peripherals! Unity is the pressing matter… abortion and homosexuality just aren’t in the same league. It’s quite that simple. In any case, anyone who’d write that the Church is in danger of “Episcopalianisation” is crackbrained and in need of a VERY long rest.

Most Russian Orthodox in the diaspora want unity. These children want “perfection”. They’re not the same thing! One of these things is NOT like the other! Which one do YOU want? That’ the question… do decide it carefully.


Saturday, 1 November 2014

1 November 2014. From the Russian Web… As It Was, As It Is, As It Ever Shall Be!

00 Tsar Nikolai Pavlovich. 01.11.14


When I saw something like the above on the Russian web, I knew that I had to “English” it and bring it to you. Thanks to Google Image Search and PhotoShop, I was able to recreate what I saw. This IS truth…

The “Ukraine” is a legal fiction that doesn’t reflect reality. Great Russia is an undoubted reality… as is Malorossiya, Novorossiya, the Lvovshchina, Belarus, and Podkarpatskaya Rus. All of them (and more) make up Holy Rus.. which isn’t “Russian”… which isn’t “Ukrainian”… which isn’t “Byelorussian”… which isn’t “Rusin”… it’s all of them… it’s a unity that’s greater than the sum of its parts. No… Great Russians aren’t the “dictators” of Holy Rus… we’re merely the largest group within it (which is something else entirely). All of us have something to bring to the table… each party has an indispensable piece of the puzzle. There are no “low Russians” nor “high Russians”… those who think in such terms miss the entire point of it all. There is one Orthodoxy that shines forth in myriad ways… that’s something that we Great Russians must acknowledge. There is one Orthodoxy that shines through all the differences… that’s something that the Little Russians and Rusins must acknowledge. That is, we’ll have unity, both religious and secular, when we understand that the only path to it is mutual humility. Shall we realise it? That’s up to you…

As it was, as it is, as it ever shall be!


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