University of Florida
THE COMPLETE WORKS OF
WALK IN THE LIGHT
WHILE YE HAVE LIGHT
2 THOUGHTS AND APH-
ORISIMS LETTERS .
B\ COUNT LEV N. TOLST O)
Tran:,lil<:d frn-, hie O(r final F'u I an ana EIl l] f d bti
BO(STO N D D\N ESTES &
EDITION DE LUXE
Limited to One Thousand Copies,
of which this is
No. 41. ...
By DANA ESTES & COMPANY
Entered at Stationers' Hall
Colonial Press : Electrotyped and Printed by
C. H. Simonds & Co., Boston, Mass., U. S. A.
'.ALK IN TRE Li-,iT V'IIILEk YE H I -F. LIGHT
THOUGHTS AND APHORISMS
II. GOD'S WORK .
III. FORM AND EXISTENCE
IV. THE OFFENCES OF THE
V. RELATION TO TRUTH
VI. LIFE AND METAPHYSICS
XII. FAMILY RELATIONS
LETTERS ON THE FAMINE
TOLST6Y'S LETTER TO HIS WIFE 203
ARTICLES AND REPORTS ON THE FAMINE 259
THE TERRIBLE QUESTION 261
ON THE METHODS OF AIDING THE PEOPLE WHO
HAVE SUFFERED FROM THE FAILURE OF CROPS 274
AMONG THE SUFFERING (REPORT UP TO APRIL
12, 1892) 299
ACCOUNT OF THE MONEY CONTRIBUTED FROM APRIL
12 TO JULY 27, 1892 309
CONCLUSION TO LAST REPORT ON THE AID TO
THE STARVING 18
NICHOLAS STICK 323
WVHY PEOPLE BECOME INTOXICATED 337
THE FIRST STEP 365
THE TEACHING OF THE TWELVE APOSTLES .411
MASTER AND WORKMAN 421
EPILOGUE TO "DROZHZHIN'S LIFE AND DEATH" 489
RELIGION AND MORALITY .515
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
IN AN EATING-HOUSE (p. 251).
THE CHARIOT RACE.
A FAMINE VILLAGE.
A POOR FARM .
A BEGGAR .
THE EIFFEL TOWER.
WALK IN THE LIGHT WHILE
YE HAVE LIGHT
Conversations between a Pagan and a Christian.
Story from the Time of the Ancient Christians
GUESTS were one day assembled in a wealthy house,
and a serious conversation on life was started. They
spoke of present and of absent people, and they could not
find a single man who was satisfied with his life. Not
only was there not one man who could boast of happi-
ness, but there was not even one man who thought that
he was living as was becoming for a Christian. All con-
fessed that they were living only a worldly life in cares
for themselves and for their families, and that not one of
them was thinking of his neighbour, and much less
of God. Thus the guests spoke among themselves, and
all agreed in accusing themselves of a godless, non-Chris-
"Why, then, do we live thus?" exclaimed a youth.
"Why do we do what we do not approve of ? Have we
not the power to change our life ? We know ourselves
that what ruins us is our luxury, our effeminacy, our
wealth, and, chiefly, our pride, our separation from our
brothers. To be noble and rich, we have to deprive
ourselves of everything which gives the joy of life to a
man. We crowd into cities, make ourselves effeminate,
ruin our health, and, in spite of all our amusements, die
from ennui and from self-pity, because our life is not such
as it ought to be. Why should we live thus ? Why ruin
our whole life, all that good which is given us by God ?
I do not want to live as heretofore! I will abandon all
the teaching which I have entered upon, for it will lead
me to nothing but the same agonizing life of which we all
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now complain. I will renounce my property and will go
to the country and live with the poor; I will work with
them, will learn to work with my hands; if my education
is of any use to the poor, I will communicate it to tbhem., but
not through institutions and books, but by living directly
with them in a brotherly relation. Yes, I have made up
my mind!" he said, looking interrogatively at his father,
who was also present.
Your desire is good," said the father, "but frivolous
and thoughtless. Everything presents itself to you as
easy, because you do not know life. There are things
enough that seem good to us But the point is, that the
execution of what is good is frequently difficult and com-
plicated. It is hard to walk well on a beaten track, and
harder still to lay out new paths. They are laid out only
by men who have fully matured and who have com-
pletely grasped everything which is accessible to men.
The new paths of life seem easy to you, because you do
not yet understand life. All this is thoughtlessness and
pride of youth. We old men are needed for the very
purpose that we may moderate your transports and guide
you by means of our experience, while you young peo-
ple should obey us, in order that you may be able to
make use of our experience. Your active life is still
ahead,- now you are growing and developing. Educate
yourself, form yourself completely, stand on your feet,
have your firm convictions, and then begin the new life,
if you feel the strength for it. But now you should obey
those who guide you for your good, and not open new
paths of life."
The youth grew silent, and the elder guests agreed to
what the father had said.
"You are right," a middle-aged married man turned
to the father of the youth, "you are right, when you say
that a youth, who has not any experience in life, may
make mistakes in looking for new paths of life, and that
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his decision i c~aunot b.e firm ; but wi: have nll agreed to
this, that our life is contrary to our conscience and does
not give us the gO'..od ; therefore we caiilnot hell but ree-
.gnieCjl that the desire to ',.et out of it is just. A youth
may take his reverie t:o b. I a dedutl:thin t' reaon:,, I:.ut I
am not a yvu:ng man, and I will tell you about myself
that, as I listened tO: the converiati:on :of this evening, the
samu thought i:ame to ilte. Tlhe ifte which I lead, >:'b-
viously ftor mys:ll'f, caDnnOt gie me an y peace of mind
and the good ; tlis is also: shown ie by reaT;,-Ln and Iby
experience. So what aii I waiting for ? \We tru~g:le-
for:,n morning intil -vening ifor our family, but in reality
it turus :out that my fatmdy and I mywtlf dio not Live in
- odly fashion but ;iuk deeper and deeper in our sine.
We i.,- everytliiun' for our f..iilies-, but our farnlik:s are
not hetttr I-of, l:'e,:ause what we Ii:o for thi:m is not the
good. And o I ha.iv: frequently thought that it would
be better if I :hiauged Lmy whole life and stol'l:Led caring
ifor my wife and my children, and btgan to think of my
soul. There is g:.ood reason in what PI'aul says, He that
is married cireth how he may please his \wife, and he
that is unmarried careth f.i-r i:d.'''
Thie married man had barely tiniLhed hi? words, when
all the wi'en l tDpiuent and his ; ifte began to: attack him.
You ought to have thou-.iht of it befo:.re," said one of
the middle-aged women. You have put on the dollarr
and so ,pull' It i- easy :i. oul:,h Ioi r any ibody to:, co:ne: and'
say that he wants to be saved, when it appears hard for
him t, keep upL, and support a family. This is a decep-
tion and a rascality No, a man muiust be able to live in
g:,odly fashii.n ,with a f.-miily. Of course, it is so:. ea;y to
Ibe saved all lIy oneself. Beside;', if you do:, so:. yo:u act
contrary to Christ's teach ing'. God has coituanded uL
to love others, while the way you do, y:ou wish f,-r the
sake :of G.od t:o i:llfend others. No: one has a right to do
violence to- his family !
WALK IN THE LIGHT
But the married man did not agree to this. He
"I do not want to abandon my family. I only say
that the family and the children should not be kept in
worldly fashion, so that they get used to living for their
lust, as we have just said, but that we should live in such
a way that the children should from the earliest time be-
come accustomed to privation, to labour, to aiding others,
and chiefly to a brotherly life in respect to all men. But,
to attain this, we must renounce aristocracy and wealth."
There is no need of curbing others, while you do not
yourself live in godly fashion 1" his wife retorted to this,
with irritation. You yourself lived for your pleasure
when you were young, so why do you want to torment
your children and your family ? Let them grow up
quietly, and then, let them do what they please, but do
not force them!"
The married man kept silence, but an old man, who
was present, took his part:
Let us admit," he said, "that a married man, who has
accustomed his family to certain comforts, cannot sud-
denly deprive them of them. It is true, if the education
of the children has been begun, it is better to finish it
than to break up everything, the more so, since the chil-
dren will themselves choose the path which they will
deem best. I admit that for a married man it is hard
and even impossible without sinning to change his life.
But we old men have been commanded to do so by God.
I will tell you about myself: I am living now without
any obligations, I must confess, I am living for my
belly only, I eat, drink, rest, and I am ashamed and
disgusted with myself. It is time for me to give up this
life, to distribute my property, and at least before death
to live as God has commanded a Christian to live."
But they did not agree with the old man either. Here
was his niece and godchild, all of whose children he had
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chri.tene'l anJi given presents to on holidays, and here
was al.:. hi- s,.,n. They all retorted to him.
** N,':" sai.l his son, you have worked enough in your
life, it is time for you to take a rest, and not to torture
y.-uiii elf. Y.,u have lived for sixty years with your
hal.it, and y':,u cannot stop them. You will only torture
yv:'urself in vaiu."
** Ye.<. yec," confirmed his niece, "you will be in want,
yd.l vyu will I.,e out of sorts, and you will grumble and
-in mio.TT th:m ever. God is merciful and pardons all the
sinners, and not, only you, such a dear uncle."
Andl why should we?" added another old man, who
was ':t th,:h same age as the uncle. "You and I have,
per ihp-, t\v. days left to live. Why should we begin
Ho II:-w w\,riderful!" said one of the guests, who had
been ilent during the conversation, "how wonderful!
All say that it is good to live in godly fashion, and that we
live badly, atid that we torment ourselves in body and
:i-'j] ; but the1 moment it comes to business, it turns out,
that the ibildre:n ought not to be broken in, but that they
cuzht t.: b bought up, not in godly fashion, but as of
I-ld. ThtI yo: ung people must not get out from under their
larerits' \ill, and they must not live in godly fashion, but
as .:t ,:l,.i ; m:a tried men must not change the life of their
wives and :hildlren, and must not live in godly fashion,
but as i:it old ; and there is no reason why old men should
begin anerw,- they are not accustomed to it, and they
haie but t\w:. .lays to live, and all such things. It turns
-uat that nb:LiJy can live well, but that we may only talk
WALK IN THE LIGHT WHILE
YE HAVE LIGHT
THIS happened in the reign of the Roman Emperor
Trajan, 100 Anno Domini. It was at a time when the
disciples of Christ's disciple' were still alive, and the
Christians held firmly to the law of the teachers, as it
says in the Acts.
The multitude of them that believed were of one heart
and of one soul: and none of them said that aught of
the things which he possessed was his own; but they had
all things common. And with great power the apostles
gave witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ,
and great grace was upon their faith. Neither was there
any among them that lacked: for as many as were pos-
sessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the
prices of the things that were sold, and laid them down
at the apostles' feet, and distribution was made unto
every man according as he had need. (Acts, Chap. IV.,
In these first times there lived in the country of Cilicia,
in the city of Tarsus, a rich merchant, a Syrian, a dealer
in precious stones, Juvenalis by name. He came from
simple and poor people, but through labour and skill in
his business he gained wealth and the respect of his
WALK IN THE IIGHT
fellow citizens. He had travelled much in foreign coun-
tries and, though he was not learned, had come to know
and understand many things, and the inhabitants of the
city respected him for his intellect and justice. He pro-
fessed the same Roman, pagan faith which was professed
by all the respected men of the Roman empire; that
faith, the fulfilment of whose ceremonies they had begun
strictly to demand from the time of Emperor Augustus
and which the present Emperor Trajan himself strictly
observed. The country of Cilicia is far from Rome, but
it was governed by a Roman supreme officer, and what
was done in Rome found its echo in Cilicia, and the
governors imitated their emperors.
Juvenalis remembered from his childhood the stories
of what Nero had done in Rome, had later seen how the
emperors had perished one after another, and, being a
clever man, understood that there was nothing sacred
in the Roman religion, but that it all was the work of
human hands. The senselessness of all the life surround-
ing him, especially of what was taking place in Rome,
where he often went on business, had frequently dis-
turbed him. He had doubts; he could not grasp it all,
and he referred it all to his lack of education.
He was married, and he had had four children, but
three of them had died in their youth, and there was only
one son left, and his name was Julius.
In this Julius Juvenalis centred all his love and all
his cares. Juvenalis was particularly anxious to have
his son educated in such a way that his son should not
be tormented by those doubts concerning life, by which
he himself had been troubled. When Julius passed his
fifteenth year, his father gave him to be instructed by a
philosopher who had settled in their city, and who took
youths to instruct them. The father gave him to the
philosopher together with his comrade Pamphylius, the
son of one of Juvenalis's deceased manumitted slaves.
WALK IN THE LIGHT
The. youths were of the same age, both handsome, and
the' we:re friends.
;'i:bth youths studied diligently, and both were of good
morals. Julius excelled more in the study of the poets
and of mathematics, while Pamphylius excelled in the
study of philosophy. A year previous to the end of their
instruction, Pamphylius came to school and informed his
teacher that his mother, a widow, was going to the city
of Daphne, and that he would have to stop studying.
The teacher was sorry to lose a pupil who was doing him
honour; and so was Juvenalis, but most of all Julius.
To all admonitions to stay and continue his instruction,
Pamphylius remained imperturbable and, thanking his
friends for their love and their cares of him, he parted
Two years passed; Julius finished his studies, and
during all that time he had not seen his friend.
Once he met him in the street; he invited him to his
house and began to ask him how and where he was
living. Pamphylius told him that he was living with
his mother in the same place.
"We do not live alone," he said, "but there are many
friends with us, and we have everything in common with
"How in common ? asked Julius.
So that none of us considers anything his own."
"Why do you do so ?"
We are Christians," said Pamphylius.
"Is it possible ?" exclaimed Julius. But I was told
that the Christians killed children and ate them. Is it
possible you take part in this ? "
Come and see," replied Pamphylius. We do not
do anything in particular; we live simply, trying to do
"But how can one live without considering anything
one's own ?"
WALK IN THE LIGHT
"We manage to live. If we give our brothers our
labour, they give us theirs."
Well, and if your brothers take your labour, and do
not give it back, what then ?"
There are no such," said Pamphylius. Such people
like to live in luxury and will not come to us: our life is
simple and not luxurious."
But are there not many lazy people who will be glad
to be fed for nothing ?"
There are such, and we receive them cheerfully.
Lately there came to us such a man, a fugitive slave; at
first, it is true, he was lazy and lived badly, but he soon
changed his manner of life, and is now a good brother."
But suppose he had not mended his ways ?"
There are such, too. Elder Cyril has said that such we
must treat like the dearest brothers, and love even better."
Is it possible to love good-for-nothing people ?"
One cannot help but love a man !"
"But how can you give to all everything which they
ask for ? inquired Julius. If my father gave to all who
ask him for something, he would soon be left without
I do not know," replied Pamphylius, "but we have
enough left for our needs; and if it happens that we
have nothing to eat or to cover ourselves with, we ask of
others and they give to us. Yes, this happens rarely. It
happened but once that I had to go to bed without a
supper, and that, too, was so because I was very tired and
did not wish to go to a brother to ask him for it."
I do not know how you do it," said Julius, only, as
my father has told me, if you do not guard what is yours,
and if, besides, you give everything to those who ask it,
you will yourself starve to death."
We do not starve. Come and see. We live, and not
only do not suffer want, but have enough to spare."
How is this ?"
WALK IN THE LIGHT
It is lik. this: We all confess the same law, but
th,. fiore: of ltxe:cution varies in us: one has more, another
Iic; oi it. iOne: has already perfected himself in the good
life, tano:ther is only beginning it. At the head of all of us
Stands Christ with his life, and we all try to emulate him,
and in tLhi alone do we see our good. Some, like Elder
('Cril and his wife Pelagea, stand ahead of us; others
strnd I. hindl u; others again are far behind,but all walk
io the saume path. The leaders are already near to Christ's
law.- th- Im'nunciation of self, and have lost their
souls, in order to find them. They need nothing; they
have no thought of themselves, and the last thing they
have they, according to Christ's law, give to him who
asks for it. There are others who are weaker, who can-
not give up everything; they weaken and have still a
thought of themselves; they weaken without the custom-
ary food and raiment, and do not give up everything.
There are others, who are weaker still, those who have
but lately entered upon the path; they continue to live as
of old, retain much for themselves, and give up only what
is superfluous. And it is these hindmost people who come
to the aid of those in front. We are, besides, all of us by
relationship intermingled with the pagans. One has a
father who is a pagan and holds property and gives it to
his son. The son gives it to those who ask him for it, but
the father gives him some again. Another has a pagan
mother who pities her son and helps him. A third has
pagan children, and their mother is a Christian, and the
children solace their mother and give her things, asking
her not to distribute them; and she takes them out of
love for them, and none the less gives them to others. A
fourth has a pagan wife. A fifth has a pagan husband.
Thus are all intermingled, and the foremost would be glad
to give their last, but are not able to do so. It is this
which supports the weak in their faith, and from this a
great superfluity is collected."
WALK IN THE LIGHT
To this Julius said:
But if it is so, you evidently depart from Christ's
teaching and only make believe. If you do not give up
everything, there is no difference between you and us. As
I take it, if one is a Christian, he ought to fulfil every-
thing, give up everything and become a beggar."
That is best of all," said Pamphylius. "Do so."
Yes, I will, when I see that you do so."
"We do not wish to show anything, and I advise you
not to come to us and not to abandon your life for the
sake of appearances; what we do, we do, not for appear-
ances, but according to faith."
What is meant by according to faith ?"
By according to faith is meant that salvation from
the evils of the world, from death, is only in a life accord-
ing to Christ's teaching. It is all the same to us what
people will say of us. We do not do anything for the
sake of people, but because in this alone do we see life and
It is impossible not to live for oneself," said Julius.
" The gods themselves have implanted this in us, that we
love ourselves more than others and seek pleasures for
ourselves. And you do the same. You say yourself that
there are some among you who have a thought for them-
selves. They will be preparing more and more pleasures
for themselves and will more and more abandon your faith
and will do precisely as we do."
No," replied Pamphylius, "our people walk along
another path and never weaken, but keep growing
stronger, just as the fire will never go out so long as
wood is put on it. In this does our faith consist."
"I cannot make out in what this faith does consist."
Our faith consists in this, that we understand life as
Christ has explained it to us."
"How has he ?"
Christ told the following parable : Husbandmen were
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living in an:.cthbi l an s garden .iunl ha.: to pay tribute to
their Lmater. It ik we-, thie pe?:iple, w.'h' are living in the
v.:,i'l an.d.l must pay ttil.i .te to: G-.., to do His will.
Blut th,-: rmiin with their ..:,orldl faith thought that the
g.:i-i:ln was th,..ir~, that the-y ilid.1 not nee,-d to pay for it,
.ild that all thc.-y lail tl: :I,: wna t:, enuj:'y its fruits. The
mia:ter -cut a ui- ieeui t.. t.h bh h i..ndmen to receive
thli tri.iite. but tlh-y i.lv:'v hlini away. The master sent
hi, ,:on f'or the tril:.ute:, aid:l tihey k:ille..l him, thinking that
after that u io.ie wi:.u:l dli-til.' th-mi. This is the
wolrldly faith bl:y wli:h all th- ililiE ofA the world live,
when th..y '.1,o u:,t ri,:ou-ize: thl,. tit that life is given for
the pujlr.,- *:,if -irving Glod. Dut Ch'lri t has taught us that
th- v,.L:rli.lly t'fith, that it i- letter lor a man if he drives
thle laJt:*r's. inL,'-eu ir andl thte 4 :.u out of the garden and
d:l:.-s u.,t pay t iiut. i, a falce faith, 1:c.,cause one result
oIr the other C:anu m:t i:,e a \':,iii-:, -itheti y'.u pay tribute, or
you are dJii u ouit .of' the aile-tii. Hi. has taught us that
.-1ll the j :oy, thu,:- which we call joy;s. eating, drinking,
mi.errli n.:ut. Ca':n I-0 uo J:,oys if life iM Pla. ed in them; that
they :ine jioys nuly wheL.i we -eek -oieLithing else,-the
fulfiliinint i-f G..nPl'. will; tbht :.uly then these joys follow
the 1 'i llilrlmL:t as a trueI rw:ari. T'. wish to take the
joyP- witliut the lal.,.:,ur -f tihllliug (;od's will, to tear
the j.:, i awitv iri:t lal:alir, i73 th.: inimn, to tear the stalks
of th -rwers anud plant them without roi:t :,. We believe in
this, anu]l -... -i.aun:.t ,eek thle Ide-lptci:n instead of the
truthi. Our t'aith i.'onii-t; in thi., that the good of life is
u,.,t in jo.y, hlt in the fultililment i:.f G:od's will without
an y thi,.i'ht as to ji:'vi o:r iany hop:le expecting them.
Aidl thus '.v:, live, auni tlh l %.:,I.g-r w~ live, the more we
-.e that the joy. an.l the . lil:,;- ,1 whelel following the
:I.it't a, i :we in tl: wak i, tof tthe fullril. nt of God's will.
Our teache-r h,.ha -.-i1, C.':,, iutl:o me, all ye that labour
.and arer heavy I-Iaen, anil I will f~\ve i rest. Take my
yok:k- upon you, a:d:l learn i: t mce; fir I am meek and
16 WALK IN THE LIGHT
lowly of heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.'"
Thus spoke Pamphylius. Julius listened and his heart
was touched, but what Pamphylius had said was not
clear to him; it seemed to him that Pamphylius was
deceiving him; and he looked again into Pamphylius's
good eyes, and it seemed to him that Pamphylius was
deceiving himself. Pamphylius invited Julius to come
to see him, to inspect their life, and, if he was pleased
with it, to remain to live with them.
Julius promised he would come, but he did not go to
see Pamphylius; he was carried away by his own manner
of life, and forgot Pamphylius.
JULIUS'S father was rich, loved his only son, was proud
of him, and spared no money on him. Julius's life passed
like that of rich young men: in idleness, luxury, and the
amusements of dissipation, which have always been the
same, -wine, gaming, and fast women.
But the enjoyments to which Julius abandoned him-
self demanded more and more money, and Julius began
to feel a lack of it. Once he asked his father for more
than his father was in the habit of giving to him. The
father gave it to him, but also reprimanded him. Feel-
ing himself guilty and not wishing to confess his guilt,
his son grew angry and insulted his father, as those
always grow angry who know their guilt and do not wish
to confess it. The money taken from his father was
very soon spent, and, besides, Julius happened at that
time to get into a brawl with a companion of his and to
kill a man. The chief of the city learned of this and
wanted to take Julius under guard, but his father obtained
his pardon. Just then Julius needed more money for his
dissipations. He borrowed money from a friend, promis-
ing to return it to him. Besides, his mistress demanded
a present from him: she took a liking for a pearl neck-
lace, and he knew that if he did not fulfil her prayer, she
would abandon him and go to live with a rich man who
had long been trying to get her away from Julius.
Julius went to his mother, and told her that he was in
need of money, and that he would kill himself if he did
not get as much as he needed.
He did not blame himself, but his father, for the condi-
18 WALK IN THE LIGHT
tion he was in. He said: "My father accustomed me to
a life of luxury, and then began to begrudge me the
money. If he had given me in the beginning without
rebukes what he later gave me, I should have arranged
my life and should have had no need; but as he never
gave me any sufficiency, I was compelled to turn to
usurers, and they squeezed everything out of me; and
there was nothing left for me to live on, as is proper for
a rich young man, and I am ashamed in the presence of
my companions, while my father does not wish to under-
stand anything. He has forgotten that he himself was
once a young man. It is he who brought me to this
state, and if he does not give me now what I am asking
for, I shall kill myself."
The mother, who spoiled her son, went to his father.
The father sent for his son, and began to scold him and
his mother. The son answered insultingly to his father.
The father struck him. The son grasped his father's
hands. The father called the slaves and commanded
them to bind his son and lock him up.
When Julius was left alone, he began to curse his
father and his own life.
His death or the death of his father presented itself to
him as the only way out from the condition in which he
Julius's mother suffered more than he. She did not
try to make out who was to blame for all this. She only
was sorry for her beloved child. She went to her hus-
band to implore his pardon. Her husband would not
listen to her, rebuked her for having spoiled her son; she
rebuked him, and it all ended in the husband beating his
wife. But the mother paid no attention to the blows,
and went to her son to admonish him to beg his father's
pardon and submit to him. For this she promised her
son secretly that she would give him the money which
he was in need of. Her son agreed, and then the mother
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went to her husband and begged him to forgive his son.
The father for a long time scolded his wife and his son,
l.bt finally decided that he would forgive his son, but
only on condition that he would abandon his life of dis-
sipation and would marry a rich merchant's daughter,
whom his father wanted to get as a wife for his son.
"He will get money from me and the wife's dowry,"
said the father, "and then let him begin a regular life.
If he promises to do my will, I shall forgive him. But
now I will not give him anything, and the first time he
transgresses, I will turn him over to the chief."
Julius agreed to everything, and was released. He
promised to get married and to abandon his bad life, but
he did not have the intention of doing so.
His life at home became a hell for him: his father did
not speak to him and quarrelled with his mother on
account of him, and his mother cried.
On the following day his mother called him to her
apartments and secretly handed him a precious stone
which she had carried off from her husband.
"Go and sell it, not here, but in another city, and do
what you have to do. I shall know how for a time to con-
ceal this loss, and if it is discovered, I will put the blame
on one of the slaves."
The mother's words touched Julius's heart. He was
terrified at what she had done and, without taking the
precious stone, left the house.
He did not know himself whither he was going, and
for what purpose. He walked on and on, away from the
city, feeling the necessity of being left alone and reflecting
on what had happened to him and on what was awaiting
him. As he kept marching on and on, he left the city
behind and entered a holy grove of the Goddess Diana.
Upon reaching a solitary spot, he began to think. The
first thought that came to him was to ask the goddess's aid,
but he no longer believed in his gods and so knew that
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no aid was to be expected from them. And if not from
them, from whom ? It seemed too strange to him to
reflect on his own situation. In his soul there was chaos
and darkness. But there was nothing to be done: it was
necessary for him to turn to his conscience, and he began
before it to consider his life and his acts; and both
seemed bad to him and, above all, foolish. Why had he
been tormenting himself so much? Why had he been
ruining his youthful years? There were few joys, and
much sorrow and unhappiness! But the main thing
was, he felt himself alone. Before this he had had a
loving mother, a father, and even friends,--now there
was nothing. No one loved him! He was a burden to
all. He had managed to cross everybody's life: for his
mother he was the cause of her discord with his father;
for his father he was a spendthrift of his money, which
had been collected by the labour of a whole life; for his
friends he was a dangerous, disagreeable rival. For all of
them it was desirable that he should die.
Passing his life in review, he recalled Pamphylius, and
his last meeting with him, and how Pamphylius had
invited him to come to them, the Christians. And it
passed through his head that he would not return home,
but would go to the Christians and would remain with
"But is my situation so desperate ?" he thought, and
he again recalled everything which had happened to him,
and again he was frightened at this, that, as he thought,
no one loved him and he loved no one. His mother,
father, friends did not love him, could not help but desire
his death; but did he himself love any one? His
friends? He felt that he did not love any one. They
were all his antagonists; all were pitiless to him now that
he was in misfortune.
"My father ?" he asked himself, and he was seized by
terror, when, at this question, he looked into his own
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heart. He not only did not love him, but even hated
him for the oppressions, for the insults. He hated him
and, besides, he saw clearly that for his, Julius's happi-
ness, he needed his father's death.
"Yes," he said to himself, "if I knew that no one
would ever see or find out, what would I do, if I could
with one stroke, at once, deprive him of life and free
And Julius answered himself:
"Yes, I should kill him!"
He gave this answer to himself, and he was frightened
My mother ? Yes, I pity her, but I do not love her;
it is all the same to me what will become of her, all I
need is her aid. Yes, I am a beast! and a hunted-down,
a baited beast, and I differ from a beast only in this, that
I can, by my will, go away from the deceptive, evil life;
I can do what a beast cannot,- I can kill myself. I
hate my father, I love no one neither my mother, nor
my friends unless, perhaps, Pamphylius alone."
And he again thought of him. He began to recall the
last meeting, and their conversation, and Pamphylius's
words as to what Christ said, according to their teaching:
" Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest." Is it true ?
He began to think, to recall the meek, fearless, and
joyful face of Pamphylius, and he wanted to believe what
Pamphylius had said.
What am I indeed ?" he said to himself. "Who am
I? A man searching after the good. I have searched
after it in lustful desires and have not found it. And all
those who live like me find it as little. All are evil and
suffer. But there is a man who is always full of joy,
because he is not searching after anything. He says that
there are many such, and that all will be such, if they
shall follow what their Teacher says. What if this is the
22 WALK IN THE LIGHT
truth ? Truth or untruth, I am drawn toward it, and
I shall go."
Thus Julius said to himself, and he left the grove,
having decided not to return home, and went toward the
village in which the Christians lived.
JULIUS walked cheerfully and joyously, and the farther
he walked and the more vividly he presented to himself
the life of the Christians, recalling everything which
Pamphylius had said, the more happy he felt. The sun
was declining toward evening, and he wanted to rest,
when he met a man on the road, who was resting and
eating his supper. The man was of middle age, with a
bright face. He was sitting, and eating olives and a flat
cake. When he saw Julius, he smiled, and said:
"Good evening, young man! The road is still far.
Sit down and rest thyself."
Julius thanked him, and sat down.
Whither dost thou go? asked the stranger.
"To the Christians," said Julius, and, by degrees, he
told the stranger his whole life and his determination.
The stranger listened attentively, asked him about the
details, and himself did not express his opinion; but when
Julius had ended, the stranger put the remaining food into
his wallet, adjusted his clothes, and said:
Young man, do not carry out thy intention Thou art
in error. I know life, but thou dost not know it. I know
the Christians, but thou dost not know them. Listen: I
will analyze all thy life and thy thoughts, and after thou
hast heard them from me, thou wilt make that decision
which will appear to thee most correct. Thou art young,
rich, handsome, strong, and the passions are boiling in thee.
Thou desirest to find a quiet harbour, where the passions
shall not agitate thee and thou wilt not suffer from their
consequences, and it seems to thee that thou wilt find
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such a harbour among the Christians. There is no such
place, dear youth, because what is troubling thee is not
to be found in Cilicia, nor in Rome, but in thyself. In
the quiet of the country solitude the same passions will
torment thee, only a hundred times more powerfully. The
deception of the Christians, or their error (I do not want
to condemn them), consists in this, that they do not wish
to recognize human nature. Only an old man, who has
outlived all his passions, may be a complete executor of
their teaching. But a man in possession of his strength,
or a youth like thee, who has not experienced life and
tried himself, cannot submit to their law, because this
law has for its basis, not human nature, but the idle
speculation of their founder, Christ. If thou shalt go to
them, thou wilt suffer what thou sufferest now, only to a
far greater extent. Now thy passions lead thee on false
paths, but, having once made a mistake in the direction,
thou art able to correct thyself; now thou hast at least
the satisfaction of liberated passion, that is, life. But
among them, thou, violently repressing thy passions, wilt
err just as much, even worse, and besides this suffering
wilt have the unceasing suffering of man's unsatisfied
needs. Let the water out over a dam, and it will water
the earth and the meadows, and animals; but hold it
back, and it will tear up the earth and run out with dirt.
The same is true of the passions. The teaching of the
Christians, their teaching in regard to life, consists, besides
the beliefs with which they console themselves, and of
which I shall not speak, also in the following: they do not
recognize violence, wars, courts, or property, or the sciences,
arts, all that which makes life easy and? joyous. All
this would be well, if all men were such as they describe
their teacher to have been. But this is not the case, and
this cannot be. Men are evil and are subject to their
passions. This play of the passions and the conflicts
which result from them hold men back in those con-
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editions of life in which they live. Barbarians (savages)
know no repression, and one savage would, for the gratifi-
cation of his desires, destroy the whole world, if all men
should submit as easily as the Christians do. If the gods
have implanted the sentiment of anger in men, they have
done so because these sentiments are necessary for the
life of men. The Christians teach that these sentiments
are evil, and that without them men would be happy;
there would be no murders, capital punishments, wars.
This is true, but it resembles the proposition that for
their welfare they must not receive nourishment. Indeed,
there would be no greed and hunger and all the calamities
which result from them. But still this proposition would
not change human nature. And if two or three dozens of
men, believing this and actually not taking any food,
should starve to death, this would not change human
nature. The same is true of the other passions, indig-
nation, anger, revenge, even love of women, of luxury, of
splendour, and of grandeur, are characteristic of the gods
also, and so are man's unchangeable properties. Destroy
man's nutrition, and man will be destroyed; similarly
destroy man's characteristic passions, and humanity will
be destroyed. The same is true of ownership, which the
Christians are supposed to deny. Look about thee: every
vineyard, every enclosure, every house, every she-ass, -
all this has been produced by men only under the con-
dition of ownership. Reject the right of ownership, and
not one vineyard will be dug up, not one alirhal will
be raised and trained. The Christians assert that they
have no property, but they enjoy its' fruits. They say
that they have everything in common, and that every-
thing is brought together. But what they bring together,
they have received from people who own property. They
only deceive men and, at best, deceive themselves. Thou
sayest that they work themselves, in order to support
themselves; but what they get by work would not
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support them, if they did not make use of what men who
recognize ownership have produced. Even if they could
support themselves, they only could sustain their lives,
and there would be no place among them for the sciences,
nor for the arts. They do not recognize the use of our
sciences and arts. Nor can they act differently. All
their teaching tends only to bring them back to the
primitive state, to savagery, to the animal. They cannot
serve humanity by means of the sciences and arts, and,
since they do not know them, they deny them. They
cannot serve by those means which form man's exclusive
property and bring him near to the gods. They will have
no temples, no statues, no theatres, no museums. They
say that they do not need them. The easiest way not to
be ashamed of their baseness is to despise altitude, and
this they are doing. Their teacher is an ignoramus
and cheat. And they emulate him. Besides, they are
godless. They do not recognize the gods and their inter-
vention in human affairs. For them exists only the
father of their teacher, whom they also call their own
father, and the teacher himself, who, according to their
conception, has revealed all the mysteries of life to them.
Their teaching is a miserable deception. Consider this:
our teaching says that the world exists through the gods
and that the gods protect men. But men, to live well,
must worship the gods and themselves seek and think, -
and so we are guided in our life, on the one hand, by the
will of the gods, on the other, by the combined wisdom of
all humanity. We live, think, and seek, and so move
toward truth. But they have no gods, nor their will, nor
human wisdom, but only one thing, the blind belief in
their crucified teacher, and in everything which he has
said to them. Weigh which guide is more reliable, the
will of the gods and the combined, free activity of human
wisdom, or the compulsory, blind belief in the words of
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Julius was struck by what the stranger had told him,
especially by his last words.
His intention of going among the Christians was not
only shaken, but it now even seemed strange to him how,
under the influence of his troubles, he could have decided
upon such madness. But there was still the question
open for him what he was to do now and how to get out
of those difficult conditions in which he now was, and he
told the stranger about his situation and asked his advice.
I wanted to speak of this very thing," continued the
stranger. What art thou to do ? Thy path, in so far as
human wisdom is accessible to me, is clear to me. All
thy troubles arise from the passions which are character-
istic of man. Thou hast been carried away by passion,
which took thee so far that thou didst suffer. Such are
the usual lessons of life. These lessons must be used to
advantage. Thou hast experienced much, and thou know-
est where it is bitter and where sweet: thou canst no
longer repeat those blunders. Take advantage of thy ex-
perience. What grieves thee more than anything else is
thy enmity toward thy father. This enmity is due to thy
situation ; choose another, and it will be destroyed, or, at
least, it will no longer manifest itself so painfully. All
thy troubles are due to the irregularity of thy situation.
Thou hast abandoned thyself to the amusements of youth;
this is natural and good. But it was good only so long
as it corresponded to thy age. But the time passed and
thou didst abandon thyself with the powers of a man
to the wantonness of youth, and that was bad. Thou
hast reached a time when thou oughtest to become a man,
a citizen, and serve thy country, work in its behalf. Thy
father proposes to thee that thou shouldst get married.
His advice is wise. Thou hast outlived one period of life,
youth, and hast entered upon another. All thy tribula-
tions are symptoms of a transitional condition. Recognize
that the time of youth has passed and, boldly rejecting what
28 WALK IN THE LIGHT
was proper for it, but not proper for a man, enter upon
the new path. Get married, give up the enjoyments of
youth, busy thyself with commerce, public affairs, the
sciences, and the arts, and thou wilt not only make thy
peace with thy father and thy friends, but thou wilt also
find peace and joy. The main thing that agitated thee is
the unnaturalness of thy situation. Thou hast become a
man, and thou shouldst enter into matrimony and be
a man. And so my chief counsel is: Do thy father's bid-
ding, get married. If thou art attracted to solitude, which
thou hadst intended to find among the Christians, if thou
art inclined toward philosophy, and not toward the activ-
ity of life, thou canst usefully abandon thyself to this
activity only after thou hast learned life in its true sig-
nificance. This thou wilt know only as an independent
citizen and head of a family. If after that thou shalt be
attracted to solitude, abandon thyself to it, and then it
will be a true attraction, and not an outburst of dissatis-
faction, such as it is at present. Then go 1 "
The last words more than any others convinced Julius.
He thanked the stranger and returned home.
His mother received him with joy. His father, too,
when he learned of his readiness to submit to his will and
to marry the maiden which had been proposed to him,
was reconciled with his son.
THREE months later they celebrated the wedding with
beautiful Eulampia, and Julius, having changed his man-
ner of life, began to manage a separate house with his wife,
and himself attended to part of the business which his
father had turned over to him.
Once he went for his business house to a near-by town,
and while he was sitting there in a merchant's shop, saw
Pamphylius pass by with a maiden, who was a stranger to
him. Both were walking with heavy burdens of grapes,
which they were selling. When Julius recognized his
friend, he went up to him and asked him to step into the
shop, in order to have a chat with him. When the maiden
saw Pamphylius's desire to go with his friend and his mis-
giving about leaving her alone, she hastened to say that she
did not need him and would sit alone with the grapes,
waiting for purchasers. Pamphylius thanked her and
went with Julius into the shop. Julius asked permission
of the merchant, his friend, to go into his living-room, and
when he had received the permission, retired with Pam-
phylius to the rooms in the back.
The friends asked one another for the details of their
lives. Pamphylius's life had not changed since they had
met the last time: he continued to live in the Christian
commune, was not married, and assured his friend that
his life was getting more and more joyous with every
year, day, and hour. Julius told his friend what had
happened with him, and how he had been on his way to
the Christians, when his meeting with the stranger eluci-
dated to him the errors of the Christians, and his own
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duty to get married, and how he had followed the advice
and had married.
"Well, art thou happy now?" Pamphylius asked.
" Hast thou found in marriage what the stranger promised
Happy ?" said Julius. What do you mean by
happy? If we are to understand by it a full gratification
of my desires, I am naturally unhappy. So far I have
been carrying on my business with success, and people
begin to respect me; and in either of these things I find
a certain satisfaction. Though I see many men who are
richer and more honoured than I, I foresee the possibility
of coming up to them and even surpassing them. This
side of my life is full, but my wedded state, I will say
outright, does not satisfy me. I will say more: I feel
that this very matrimony, which ought to give me joy,
has not given it to me, and that the joy, which I experi-
enced at first, kept diminishing and finally was destroyed;
and in the place where there was joy there has grown up
sorrow. My wife is beautiful, clever, learned, and good.
At first I was entirely happy. But now, -you do not
know this, because you have no wife, there occur causes
for discord, because she seeks my love, when I am indif-
ferent to her, and vice versa. Besides, for love we need
novelty. A less attractive woman than my wife attracts
me more at first, but later becomes less attractive to me
than my wife; I have already experienced this. No, I
have not found any satisfaction in my married state.
Yes, my friend," concluded Julius, the philosophers are
right: life does not give what the soul wishes for. I
have experienced this now in matrimony. But the fact
that life does not give the good which the soul wishes for
does not prove that your deception may give it," he added,
In what dost thou see our deception ?" asked Pam-
WALK IN THE LIGHT
Your deception consists in this, that you, to liberate
a man from the calamities which are connected with the
affairs of life, deny all affairs of life,- life itself. To
free yourselves from disenchantments you deny the en-
chantment, marriage itself."
"We do not deny marriage,", said Pamphylius.
If not marriage, you deny love."
"On the contrary, we deny everything but love. It
serves us as the first foundation of everything."
I do not understand thee," said Julius. From what
I have heard from others and from thee, and from the fact
that thou art not yet married, though we are of the same
age, I conclude that you do not have marriage. Your
people continue in the married state, if they entered into
it before, but they do not enter anew into wedlock. You
do not trouble yourselves about the continuation of the
human race. If you were alone, the human race would
have long ago come to an end," said Julius, repeating what
he had heard many times.
"That is not true," said Pamphylius. "It is true that
we do not make it our aim to continue the human race
and do not trouble ourselves about it as much as I have
many a time heard your sages trouble themselves. We
assume that our Father has already taken care of this:
our aim consists only in living according to His will. If
in His will is the continuation of the human race, it will
be continued; if not, it will come to an end; this is not
our affair, not our care; our care is to live according to
His will. But His will is expressed both in our sermon
and in our revelation, where it says that a man should
unite with his wife, and there should not be two bodies,
but one. Marriage is not only not prohibited among
us, but is even encouraged by our old teachers. The
difference between our marriage and yours consists in
this, that our law has revealed to us that every lustful
looking at a woman is a sin, and so we and our women,
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instead of adorning ourselves and provoking lust, try to
remove ourselves from it so far that the sentiment of love
between us, as between brothers and sisters, should be
stronger than the sensation of lust for one woman, which
you call love."
But you can still not suppress the love of the beauti-
ful," said Julius. "I am convinced, for example, that
that beauty, the maiden with whom thou didst carry
the grapes, in spite of her attire, which conceals her
charms, evokes in thee the feeling of love for a
"I do not yet know," Pamphylius said, blushing. "I
have not thought of her beauty. Thou art the first who
has told me of it. She is for me only a sister. But I shall
go on with what I wanted to tell thee about the difference
between our marriage and yours. The difference origi-
nates even from this, that with you lust, under the name
of beauty and love and serving Goddess Venus, is sus-
tained, provoked in men. But with us it is the very
opposite: lust is not considered an evil (God has not
created any evil), but a good, which becomes an evil when
it is not in its place, an offence, as we call it. And this
is the reason why I am not yet married, though I may
possibly be to-morrow."
"But what will decide it ?"
How dost thou recognize it ?"
"If we never look for indications of it, we never find
it; but if we look for them constantly, they become clear,
as clear as are for you your divinations from sacrifices and
birds. And as you have your own sages, who according
to their wisdom, and according to the entrails of sacrificial
animals, and according to the flight of the birds expound
to you the will of the gods, so we have sages who explain
to us the will of the Father, according to Christ's revela-
tion, according to the feeling of their hearts and the
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thoughts of other men, and, chiefly, according to their
love of them."
"But all this is very indefinite," retorted Julius.
"What, for example, will show thee when to marry,
and whom? When I was about to marry, I had the
choice among three maidens: these three were chosen
from among others, because they were beautiful and rich,
and my father was satisfied if I married any one of them.
Of these three I chose Eulampia, because she was to me
more beautiful and attractive than the rest; this is natu-
ral. But what will guide thee in thy choice?"
To answer thee," said Pamphylius, I must tell thee
first of all that, since by our teaching all men are equal
before their Father, they are just as equal before us, ac-
cording to their position and to their spiritual and bodily
qualities; and so our choice (if this word, which is incom-
prehensible to us, be used) cannot be limited to anything.
A Christian's wife or husband may be chosen among any
men or women of the world."
This makes it even less possible to make up one's
mind," said Julius.
I will tell thee what our elder has said about the
difference that exists between the marriage of a Christian
and that of a pagan. A pagan, like thee, chooses a wife,
who, in his opinion, will afford him, him personally, the
greatest amount of enjoyment. But the eyes stray with
this, and it is hard to decide, the more so since the enjoy-
ment is ahead. But for a Christian there is no choice for
himself, or rather, the choice for his personal enjoyment
occupies a secondary, and not the first, place. For a
Christian the question is, not to violate God's will by his
"But where can there be a violation of God's will in
the marriage ?"
I might have forgotten the Iliad, which we studied
and read together, but thou, who art living among sages
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and poets, canst not forget it. What is the whole Iliad ?
It is a story of the violation of God's will in relation to
marriage. And Menelaus, and Paris, and Helen, and
Achilles, and Agamemnon, and Chryseis,--all that is a
description of all the strange calamities which arise for
men and even now take place from this violation."
But wherein does the violation consist ?"
"The violation consists in this, that a man loves in
woman his enjoyment from being near her, and not the
human being like himself, and so enters into matrimony
for the sake of his enjoyment. Christian marriage is pos-
sible only when a man has love for men and when the
object of his carnal love is first of all an object of this
brotherly love of man for man. Just as it is rational and
safe to build a house only when there is a foundation, to
paint a picture when everything on which it is to be
painted is prepared,-so carnal love is legitimate only
when it has respect and love of one man for another at
its base. On this foundation alone can a rational Chris-
tian family life be reared."
But I still fail to see why such a Christian marriage,
as thou callest it," said Julius, excludes the love for a
woman, which Paris experienced."
"I do not say that the Christian marriage does not
admit the exclusive love of woman; on the contrary,
only then is it rational and sacred; but the exclusive
love of woman can arise only when the formerly exist-
ing love toward all men has not been violated. But the
exclusive love for one woman, which the poets extol, rec-
ognized as good in itself, without being based on the love
of men, has no right to be called love. It is an animal
lust and frequently passes over into hatred. The best
examples of this, that the so-called love (eros), if it is not
based on brotherly love for all men, becomes bestiality,
are the cases of violence committed against the very
woman, whom he who violates her makes suffer and
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whose ruin he causes. In violence there is evidently no
love for a man, if he tortures him whom he loves. But
with the non-Christian marriage there is frequently con-
cealed violence, when he who marries a maiden, who does
not love him, or who loves another, makes her suffer and
has no compassion on her, only that he may be able to
satisfy his love."
Let us say that this is so," said Julius, but if the
maiden loves him, there is no injustice, and I do not see
any difference between a Christian and a pagan marriage."
"I do not know the details of thy marriage," answered
Pamphylius, but I know that every marriage, which has
for its basis nothing but the personal good, cannot help
but be the cause of discord; even as the simple taking of
food, among animals and among men who differ little
from animals, cannot take place without quarrelling and
fighting. Everybody wants a dainty morsel, but as there
are not enough dainty morsels to go around, discord
results from this. If there is no open discord, there is
one which is concealed. The weak individual wants a
dainty morsel, but he knows that the strong one will not
give it to him, and, although he knows the impossibility
of taking it away directly from the strong individual, he
looks with concealed, envious malice upon the strong man
and uses the first opportunity to take it away from him.
The same is true of pagan marriage, only it is twice as
bad, because the object of hatred is man, so that there
arises discord between the married pair."
"But how can this be effected, that the married pair
should love no one but one another ? There will always
be found a man or a maiden who loves some one else.
And so, according to your opinion, marriage is impos-
sible. And so I see that they say rightly of you that
you do not marry at all. That is the reason why thou
art not married and, probably, wilt not be. It cannot be
that a man should marry a woman without having first
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roused the feeling of love for himself in another woman;
or that a girl should live to maturity without having
roused a feeling in a man. How was Helen to have
Elder Cyril says of this as follows: in the pagan
world, men, without thinking of the love of their brothers,
without cultivating this sentiment, think only of one
thing, of the provocation of a love of passion for woman,
and they cultivate this passion. And so in their world
every Helen, or one like her, arouses love in many. Rivals
fight with one another, try to surpass one another, like
animals, in order to get possession of a female. And in
a greater or lesser degree, their marriage is an act of vio-
lence. In our community we not only do not think of
the personal enjoyment of beauty, but we avoid all of-
fences which lead to this, and which in the pagan world
are made a merit and a subject of worship. We, on the
contrary, think of those obligations of respect and love of
our neighbour, which we have without distinction for all
men, for the greatest beauty and for the greatest ugliness.
We cultivate this feeling with all our strength, and so the
feeling of love has for me the upper hand in us over
the temptation of beauty and vanquishes it and destroys
the discord, which results from the sexual relations. A
Christian marries only when he knows that his union
with the woman causes no one any harm."
"But is this possible ?" retorted Julius. "Can we con-
trol our infatuations ?"
"We cannot, if we give them full sway, but we can
prevent their awakening and getting up. Take as an
example the relation of father and daughter, mother and
son, brother and sister. The mother is for her son, the
daughter for her father, the sister for her brother, no
matter how beautiful they may be, not an object of per-
sonal enjoyment, but of love, and no sensations are awak-
ened. They would awaken, if the father should find out
WALK IN THE LIGHT 37
that the one he considered to be his daughter is not his
daughter, and the same in the relation of mother and son,
brother and sister; but even then this sensation would be
very feeble and submissive, and it would be in man's
power to control it. The feeling of lust would be weak,
because at the base of it is the sentiment of love for
mother, daughter, sister. Why dost thou not wish to
admit that the same sentiment may be educated and con-
firmed in man in relation to all women, just as in the
case of the mothers, sisters, daughters, and that on the
basis of this sentiment there may grow up the sentiment
of conjugal love ? The moment a brother has discovered
that the one whom he regarded as his sister is not his
sister, he allows in himself the feeling of love, as for a
woman; even so a Christian, feeling that his love is not
offending any one, allows this sentiment to rise in his
Well, and if two men fall in love with the same
Then one sacrifices his happiness for the happiness of
"But if she loves one of them ?"
"Then he whom she loves less sacrifices his sentiment,
for her happiness."
Well, and if she loves both alike, and both sacrifice
themselves, she does not marry at all ?"
No, then the elders will look into the matter, and
counsel in such a way that there shall be the greatest good
for all, with the greatest love."
"But this is never done, and it is not done because it
is contrary to human nature."
"Contrary to human nature ? What human nature ?
Man, besides being an animal, is also a man, and it is
true that such a relation to woman is not in accord with
man's animal nature, but it is with his rational nature.
And when he uses his reason in order to serve his animal
38 WALK IN THE LIGHT
nature, he does worse than an animal, he rises to
violence, to incest,- which no animal would do. But
when he uses his rational nature for the restraint of the
animal, when his animal nature serves his reason, he
attains that good which satisfies him."
"BUT tell me about thyself personally," said Julius.
"I see thee with this beauty; thou evidently lives near
her and servest her; dost thou really not wish to become
her husband ?"
I have not thought of it," said Pamphylius. She is
the daughter of a Christian widow. I serve them just
as others do. Thou didst ask me whether I love her so
much as to wish to be united with her. This question
is hard for me; but I shall answer it frankly. This
thought has come to me, but there is a youth who loves
her, and so I do not yet dare to think of it. This youth
is a Christian and loves us both, and I cannot commit an
act which would grieve him. I live without thinking
about it. I seek but for this, to fulfil the law of love
of men, this is all that is needed. I shall marry when
I see that that is necessary."
But the acquisition of a good, industrious son-in-law
cannot be a matter of indifference to her mother. She
will wish for you, and not for others."
No, it makes no difference to her, because she knows
that, besides me, all our people are ready to serve her, as
they would any one else, and I shall serve her neither
more nor less, no matter whether I shall be her son-in-
law or not. If from this shall result my marriage with
her daughter, I shall accept it with joy, as I shall accept
her marriage to some one else."
"That cannot be !" exclaimed Julius. What is so
terrible among you is, that you deceive yourselves. And
thus you deceive others. That stranger told me correctly
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about you. As I listen to thee, I involuntarily submit
myself to the beauty of the life which thou describes to
me; but when I reflect, I see that all this is a deception,
which leads to savagery, to coarseness which approaches
that of animals."
"In what dost thou see this savagery ?"
"In this, that supporting yourselves by work, you have
no leisure or chance to busy yourselves with the sciences
or the arts. Here thou art in a ragged garment, with
coarsened hands and feet; thy companion, who might be
a goddess of beauty, resembles a slave. You have neither
any songs to Apollo, nor temples, nor poetry, nor games, -
nothing which the gods have given for the adornment of
human life. To work, to work like slaves or like oxen,
only in order to feed coarsely, is this not a voluntary and
godless renunciation of will and of human nature ?"
Again human nature !" said Pamphylius. "But in
what does this nature consist ? In torturing slaves by
giving them work beyond their strength, in killing our
brothers and making them slaves, in making of women
a subject of amusement ? All this is needed for that
beauty of life, which thou considerest proper to human
nature. Does man's nature consist in this, or in living in
love and concord with all men, feeling himself a member
of one universal brotherhood ? Thou art very much mis-
taken, if thou thinkest that we do not recognize the
sciences and art. We value highly all the abilities with
which human nature is endowed; but we look upon all of
man's inherent abilities as upon means for the attainment
of one and the same end, to which we devote all our life,
namely, the fulfilment of God's will. In science and in
art we do not see an amusement, of use only as a pleasure
for idle people; we demand from science and art the
same that we demand from all human occupations, -
that in them should be realized the same activity of love
of God and our neighbour, by which all the acts of a
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Christian are permeated. We recognize as true science
only such knowledge as helps us to live better, and we
respect art only when it purifies our designs, elevates
our souls, strengthens our powers, which are necessary
for a life of labour and of love. Such knowledge we, in
proportion as we are able, do not fail to develop in our-
selves and in our children, and to such art we gladly
devote ourselves in our time of leisure. We read and
study the writings bequeathed to us by the wisdom of
men who have lived before us; we sing psalms, paint
pictures, and our poems and pictures brace our spirit and
console us in moments of grief. It is for this reason that
we cannot approve of those applications which you make
of the sciences and arts. Your learned men use their
ability of imagination to invent new means for causing
evil to men ; they perfect the methods of war, that is, of
murder; they invent new methods for gain, that is, for
getting rich at the expense of others. Your art serves you
for the erection and adornment of temples in honour of
the gods, in whom the most advanced among you have
long ago ceased believing, but you encourage this faith in
them in other people, assuming that with this deception
you will best retain them in your power. You erect statues
in honour of the most powerful and cruel of your tyrants,
whom nobody respects, but all fear. In your theatres you
give representations of criminal love. Your music serves
for the enjoyment of your rich, who glut themselves with
food and drink at their feasts. And your painting, which
adorns houses of debauchery, is such that a man who is
not intoxicated by animal passion cannot even look upon
without blushing. No, not for this have those higher
abilities, which distinguish him from the animal, been
given to man. It is not right to make of them an en-
joyment for our bodies. In devoting all our lives to the
fulfilment of God's will, we so much the more employ
our highest abilities in the same service."
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Yes," said Julius, "all that would be beautiful, if life
under such conditions were possible; but it is not possi-
ble to live thus. You deceive yourselves. You do not
recognize the defence we provide. But if the Roman
legions did not exist, would it be possible to live calmly ?
You make use of the defence, without acknowledging it.
Even some of your people, so thou didst tell me thyself,
have defended themselves. You do not recognize prop-
erty, but you make use of it: our people have it, and give
it to you. Thou wilt not thyself give thy grapes away,
but sellest them and wilt buy them. All this is decep-
tion! If you did what you say, it would be all right;
but as it is, you deceive others and yourselves."
Julius grew excited and said everything which he had
on his mind. Pamphylius waited in silence. When
Julius had ended, Pamphylius began to retort:
"In vain dost thou think that, though we do not rec-
ognize your defences, we make use of them. We do not
need the Roman legions, because we do not ascribe any
value to what demands a defence by means of violence.
Our good consists in what does not demand any defence,
and this no one can take from us. Though material
things, which in your eyes represent property, pass
through our hands, we do not regard them as our own,
and give them to those who need them for their suste-
nance. We sell the grapes to those who will buy them,
not for the sake of personal gain, but with the one pur-
pose of acquiring what the needy want. If any one
should wish to take these grapes away from us, we should
give them up without resistance. For the same reason
we are not afraid of the incursion of savages. If they
should begin to take from us the products of our labour,
we should let them have them; if they should demand
that we should work for them, we should do so with
pleasure, and they would not only have no cause, but
would even find it unprofitable, to kill and torture us.
WALK IN THE LIGHT
The savages would soon comprehend, and would love
us, and we should have less to suffer from them than
from those enlightened men of yours, who are about us
now and who persecute us. It is said that only thanks
to the right of ownership are all those products obtained,
by which men subsist and live; but, reflect thyself, by
whom are all the necessary articles of life produced ?
Thanks to whose labour do you accumulate that wealth,
on which you pride yourselves ? Is it produced by those
who, folding their hands, command their slaves and hire-
lings, and are the only ones who enjoy the property ? or
by those poor slaves who, for the sake of bread, fulfil the
commands of their master and themselves enjoy no
property, receiving as their share barely enough for their
daily sustenance ? And why do you think that these
men will stop working, when they shall have the possi-
bility of doing rational labour, useful to themselves, for
themselves and for those whom they love and pity ? Thy
accusations against us consist in this, that we do not
fully attain what we strive after, that we do not even
recognize violence and ownership, and yet make use of
them. If we are cheats, there is no sense in talking with
us, and we deserve neither anger nor arraignment, but
only contempt, and this we gladly accept, because one of
our rules is the recognition of our insignificance. But
if we sincerely strive after what we profess, then thy
accusations about our deception would be unjust. If we
strive as do my brothers and I, in order to fulfil the law
of our teacher, after living without violence and the
ownership which results from it, we strive after it, not
for external purposes, wealth, power, honours, we rec-
ognize none of these things, -but for the sake of some-
thing else. We seek the good just as you do; the only
difference is, that we see the good in something different.
You believe that the good is in wealth and honours, but
we believe differently. Our faith shows us that our good
WALK IN THE LIGHT
is not in violence, but in obedience; not in wealth, but in
giving everything up. And, like plants striving after the
light, we cannot help but strive after that where our
good is. We do not fulfil everything we wish for our
good, that is true. But can this be otherwise? Thou
strivest after having the most beautiful wife, after having
the largest possessions, hast thou, or has any one else,
ever reached it? If a marksman does not strike the tar-
get, does he stop aiming at it, because he has many times
missed his aim? The same is true of us. Our good,
according to Christ's teaching, is in love. We seek our
good, but each one of us attains it variously and far from
Yes, but why do you not believe all human wisdom,
and why have you turned away from it and believed only
your crucified teacher ? Your slavery, your submission
to him, it is this that repels me."
"Again thou art mistaken, and he is mistaken who
thinks that we, in professing our teaching, have our faith
only because the man whom we believe has commanded
us to have it. On the contrary, those who with their
whole soul seek the knowledge of the truth, the com-
munion with the Father, those who seek the good, invol-
untarily come to the path on which Christ walked, and
so involuntarily stand behind Him, see Him in front of
them. All those who love God will meet on this path,
and thou, too. He is the son of God and a mediator be-
tween God and men, not because some one told us so and
we believe in it blindly, but because all those who seek
God find His son before them, and involuntarily, only
through Him, understand, see, and know God."
Julius made no reply, and for a long time sat in
"Art thou happy ? he asked.
"I wish for nothing better. But, more than this: I
for the most part experience a feeling of perplexity, a con-
WALK IN THE LIGHT
sciousness of some injustice, because I am so very
happy," said Pamphylius, smiling.
Yes," said Julius," maybe I should be happier, if I had
not met the stranger then, and had reached you."
If thou thinkest so, what keeps thee back ?"
"And my wife ? "
Thou sayest that she is inclined toward Christianity,
- so she will go with thee."
"Yes, but the other life has been begun, how is it to
be broken up? It has been begun, it has to be finished,"
said Julius, presenting to himself the dissatisfaction of
his father, mother, friends, but mainly those efforts which
have to be made in order to make this change.
Just then the maiden, Pamphylius's companion, walked
up to the door of the shop with a young man. Pamphy-
lius went out to them, and the young man, in Julius's
presence, told them that he had been sent by Cyril to buy
hides. The grapes were all sold, and wheat was bought.
Pamphylius proposed to the young man that he should go
with Magdalen and take the wheat home, while he him-
self would buy and bring the hides.
"It will be better for thee," he said.
"No, Magdalen had better go with thee," said the
young man, and departed.
Julius took Pamphylius into the shop of a merchant he
knew. Pamphylius filled the wheat in bags and, having
given Magdalen a small part, threw his heavy burden
over his shoulder, bade Julius good-bye, and left the town
with the maiden. At the turn of the street Pamphylius
looked around and, smiling, shook his head to Julius and,
smiling in the same way, and even more joyously, at
Magdalen, he said something to her and they disappeared
Yes, I should have done better, if I had reached them
then," thought Julius. And in his imagination; alternat-
ing, arose two pictures, that of powerful Pamphylius with
46 WALK IN THE LIGHT
the tall, strong maiden, carrying baskets on their heads
and their good, bright faces, and now his domestic hearth,
which he had left in the morning and to which he would
return, and the pampered, beautiful, but wearisome and
unpleasant wife, in fine raiment and bracelets, lying on
rugs and pillows.
But Julius had not time to think: merchants, his com-
panions, came up to him, and they began their habitual
occupation, which ended with a dinner with drinking,
and at night with women.
TEN years passed. Julius did not meet Pamphylius
again, and the meetings with him slowly passed out of
his mind, and the impressions of him and of the Christian
life wore off.
Julius's life went its usual way. During this time his
father died, and he had to take upon himself the whole
business. The business was complicated: there were the
usual purchasers; there were sellers in Africa, clerks,
debts to be collected and to be paid. Julius was involun-
tarily drawn into his affairs, to which he devoted all his
time. Besides, there appeared new cares. He was chosen
to a public office, and this new occupation, which tickled
his vanity, was attractive to him. Besides commercial
affairs, he attended to public matters, and, as he possessed
a good mind and the gift of words, he began to push to
the front, so that he was able to attain a high public
position. In the course of these ten years a significant
and disagreeable change had taken place in his domestic
affairs. Three children were born to him, and this birth
of the children separated him from his wife. In the first
place, his wife lost the greater part of her beauty and
freshness ; in the second, she busied herself less with her
husband. All her tenderness and affection were concen-
trated on her children. Though the children, according
to the custom of the pagans, were turned over to wet-
nurses and attendants, Julius frequently found them with
their mother, or did not find her in her apartments, but in
those of her children, and the children generally annoyed
Julius, affording him more displeasure than joy.
WALK IN THE LIGHT
Being busy with his mercantile and public affairs,
Julius abandoned his former life of dissipation, but he
still needed, as he assumed, an elegant rest after his
labours, and this he did not find with his wife, the more
so since during this time his wife cultivated more and
more the acquaintance of her Christian slave, and more
and more was carried away by the new teaching, and
rejected in her life everything external, pagan, which had
formed her charm for Julius. As he did not find in his
wife what he wanted, he cultivated the acquaintance of a
woman of easy behaviour and with her passed those
hours of leisure which he had left from his occupations.
If Julius had been asked whether he was happy or
not, during these years of his life, he would have been
unable to answer.
He was so busy! From one affair and pleasure he
passed to another affair or pleasure, but not one of them
was such that he was fully satisfied with it, or that he
wished to continue it. Every affair was such that the
quicker he could free himself from it, the better it was
for him; and not one pleasure was such that it was not
poisoned by something, that the tedium of satiety was
not mixed in with it.
Thus Julius lived, when an event happened to him
which almost changed the whole manner of his life. He
took part in the races at the Olympian games, and, in
bringing his chariot successfully to the goal, suddenly
drove into another chariot, which he had overtaken. A
wheel broke, and he fell down and broke two ribs and an
arm. His injuries were severe, but not serious. Julius
was carried home, and he had to lie in bed for three
During these three months, amidst severe physical
sufferings, his mind began to work, and he had leisure to
think about his life, looking upon it as that of an outsider.
And his life presented itself to him in a gloomy light, the
WALK IN TOE LIGiHT
iujore co siuce :it thaIIt time there i-hppenei three unpleasant
events, which paiuel him rorely. The first wan, that hi.
sla\e. his father's trusted ser\aut, h:aviug rece-ivedl onei
pre,-:i:uJs 'tu nl-.r in Afri.a, hadJ run a-w-ay with them, thus
.aus3ig a great l:. iljnd a di ,ornzani.-tion in Julju 's
affairs. The ieconl wv:a, that .Julinli's conriulitie had left
him and had chosen another protector. The third and
the most disagreeable event for him was this, that during
his illnes- took place the election to the governorship, a
position which he had hoped to get, but to which his rival
was chose. All this, it seemed to Julius, had happened,
because his chariot had gone one finger's breadth too much
to the left.
As he was lying all alone on his bed, he began involun-
tarily to think of how his life depended on the most
insignificant accidents, and these thoughts brought him to
others, and to the recollection of his former misfortunes, -
of his attempt to go to the Christians and of Pamphylius,
whom he had not seen for ten years. These recollections
were intensified by his conversations with his wife, who
now stayed with him frequently during his illness and
told him everything she knew about Christianity from
her slave. This slave had at one time lived in the same
community with Pamphylius, whom she knew. Julius
wished to see this slave, and when she came to his couch,
he asked her in detail about everything and especially
Pamphylius," the slave told him, was one of the best
brothers, and was loved and respected by all." He was
married to that same Magdalen, whom Julius had seen
ten years before. They had already several children.
"Yes, the man who does not believe that God has
created men for their good," concluded the slave, "needs
only go and look at their life."
Julius dismissed the slave and, when left alone, buried
himself in thought concerning everything which he had
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heard. He felt ashamed, when he compared his life with
that of Pamphylius, and he wanted not to think of it.
To distract himself, he picked up a Greek manuscript,
which his wife had laid down before him, and began to
read. In the manuscript he read as follows :
There are two ways, one is the way of life, and the
other the way of death. The way of life consists in this:
In the first place, thou shalt love God, who has created
thee; in the second place, thy neighbour as thyself; and
what thou dost not wish to have done to thee, do not to
another. The teaching which is included in these words
is as follows: Bless those who curse you ; pray for your
enemies, and fast for your persecutors, for what reward is
there, if ye love those who love you ? Do not the pagans
do likewise? Love those who hate you, and ye will have
no enemies. Remove yourselves from carnal and from
worldly lusts. If a man smite thee on the right cheek,
turn to him the other also, and thou shalt be perfect. If
a man compel thee to walk a mile, walk with him two;
if a man take from thee what is thine, do not ask it back,
for thou canst not; if a man take thy upper garment,
give him also thy shirt. To all who ask, give, and demand
not back, for the Father wishes that all should receive of
His gifts of grace. Blessed is he who gives according to
the commandment !
"The second commandment of the teaching: Thou
shalt not kill, thou shalt not commit adultery, thou shalt
not fornicate, nor steal, nor divine, nor poison, nor covet
that which is thy neighbour's. Swear not, bear not false
witness, speak not evil, remember not evil. Be not double
in thought, nor double of tongue. Let not thy word be
false, nor idle, but in conformity with the fact. Be not
greedy, nor avaricious, nor hypocritical, nor evil-mannered,
nor haughty. Have no evil intentions against thy neigh-
bour. Have no hatred for any man, but arraign some,
pray for others, and others again love more than thy soul.
WALK IN THE LIGHT 51
"My child! Avoid every evil and everything like it.
Be not angry, for anger leads to murder; nor jealous, nor
quarrelsome, nor irritable, for from all this comes murder.
My child! Be not lustful, for lust leads to fornica-
tion; be not foul of speech, for from this comes adultery.
My child Do not lie, for lying leads to stealing; be
not greedy, nor vain, for from all this comes stealing.
My child! Be no murmurer, for this leads to blas-
phemy; nor bold, nor evil-minded, for from all this comes
blasphemy. But be meek, for the meek shall inherit the
earth. Be long-suffering and merciful, and kindly, and
humble, and good, and always tremble at the words which
thou shalt hear. Exalt not thyself in spirit, and give no
boldness to thy soul. Let not thy soul cleave to the proud,
but converse with the righteous, and with the humble.
Accept everything which may happen with thee as good,
knowing that nothing can be without God.
My child! Cause no divisions, and reconcile those
who quarrel. Extend not thy hand to receive, and close
it not at giving. Waver not in giving and, giving, murmur
not, for thou shalt find out who is a good giver of rewards.
Turn not away from the needy, but in everything have
communion with thy brother, and call nothing thine own
property, for if ye are participants in the imperishable
things, ye are so much the more in perishable things.
From childhood teach thy children the fear of God.
Command not thy slaves in anger, lest they cease to fear
God, who is above both of you, for He comes not to call,
judging by persons, but calls those whose spirit He has
And the way of death is as follows: first of all it is
evil and cursed, here are murder, adultery, lust, forni-
cation, stealing, idolatry, sorcery, poisoning, rape, false
witness, hypocrisy, double-mindedness, cunning, pride,
malice, haughtiness, avarice, foul speech, envy, impudence,
conceit, vanity; here are the persecutors of the good, the
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haters of truth, the lovers of lying, who acknowledge no
retribution for righteousness, nor cleave to good, nor
to righteous judgment, watchful, not of the good, but of
evil, from whom are removed humbleness and patience;
here are also the lovers of vanity, the seekers of rewards,
who have no compassion for their neighbours, who labour
not for the oppressed, who know not their Creator; mur-
derers of children, ruiners of God's image, who turn away
from the needy, oppressors of the oppressed, defenders of
the rich, unlawful judges of the poor, sinners in all
things Beware, children, of all such people."
Long before Julius had read the manuscript to the end,
there happened with him, what happens with people who
read a book, that is, another person's thoughts, with the
sincere desire for the truth; he entered with his soul
in communion with those who had inspired these
thoughts. He read, guessing in advance what would
be, and not only agreed with the thoughts of the book,
but seemed himself to have expressed them.
With him happened that common, most mysterious,
most significant phenomenon in life, unnoticed by many,
which consists in this, that the so-called live man becomes
alive, when he enters into communion, unites into one,
with the so-called dead, and lives one life with them.
Julius's soul united with him who wrote and inspired
these thoughts, and after this communion he examined
himself, his life. And he himself and his whole life
appeared to him as one terrifying mistake. He did not
live, but with all his cares about his life and with the
temptations only ruined in himself the possibility of
the true life.
"I do not want to ruin my life, -I want to live, to
walk on the path of life," he said to himself.
He recalled everything Pamphylius had told him in
their former conversations, and all that now appeared
to him so clear and so indubitable that he was surprised
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how he could have believed the stranger at that time and
been kept from fulfilling his intention,--of going to the
Christians. He recalled also what the stranger had told
"Go there, when thou hast experienced life."
"Well, I have experienced life and have found nothing
He also recalled the words of Pamphylius, that, no
matter when he would come to them, they would be glad
to receive him.
Yes, I have erred and suffered enough!" he said to
himself. I shall give up everything, and I shall go and
live with them, as it says here."
He told his thought to his wife, and she was delighted
at his intention. His wife was ready for everything.
The only question was how to carry it out. What was
to be done with the children ? Were they to be taken
along, or to be left with their grandmother ? How were
they to be taken ? How could they, after the tenderness
of their bringing up, be subjected to all the difficulties of
a stern life ? The slave proposed to go with them. But
the mother was afraid for her children, and said that it
would be better to leave them with their grandmother
and go alone. And to this they agreed.
Everything was decided upon, and only Julius's sick-
ness retarded the execution of their plans.
IN this mood Julius fell asleep. Next morning he was
told that a skilful physician, who was passing through
the city, wished to see him, promising to cure him soon.
Julius gladly received the physician. The physician was
no other than the same stranger whom Julius had met as
he was on his way to the Christians. The physician
examined his wounds, and prescribed to him potions of
herbs to strengthen him.
Shall I be able to work with my hand ?" asked
"Oh, yes Direct the chariot, write, yes."
"But hard work, digging ?"
"I have not thought of it," said the physician, because
this will not be needed in thy position."
"On the contrary, I shall need it very much," said
Julius; and he told the physician that since he had seen
him he had followed his advice and had experienced life;
but life had not given him what it had promised, but, on
the contrary, had disenchanted him, and that now he
wished to carry out the intention of which he had spoken
"Yes, they have evidently put their whole deception
into practice, and have enchanted thee in such a way that
in thy position, with those obligations which lie upon
thee, especially in relation to the children, thou dost none
the less not see their error."
"Read this," was all Julius said, handing him the
manuscript which he had read.
The physician took the manuscript and looked at it.
WALK IN THE LIGHT
I know this," he said, "I know this deception, and I
marvel how such a learned man as thou art can fall into
such a trap."
I do not understand thee. In what does the trap
The whole question is in the life, and they, these
sophists and rioters against men and gods, offer a happy
way of life, in which all men shall be happy; there will
be no wars, no capital punishment, no poverty, no quar-
rels, no malice. And they assert that such a condition of
men will exist when all men shall fulfil Christ's com-
mandments, when they shall not quarrel, nor fornicate,
nor swear, nor offer violence, nor wage war upon one
another. But they deceive us in that they take the aim
for the means. The aim is not to quarrel, not to swear,
not to fornicate, and so forth, and this aim is attained
only by means of the public life. But they say very
nearly what a teacher of shooting might say: Thou wilt
hit the target, if thy arrow shall fly in a straight line to
the target.' But the problem is, how to do so that it may
fly in a straight line. And this problem is attained in
shooting by the stringing of the string, the flexibility
of the bow, the straightness of the arrow. The same is
true of the life of men. The best life of men, in which
there is no need for quarrelling, fornicating, killing, is
attained by having a string, the rulers, the flexi-
bility of the bow, the strength of power, and a
straight arrow, the justice of the law. But they, under
the pretext of a better life, destroy everything which has
improved life. They recognize neither government, nor
power, nor laws."
"But they assert that without rulers, power, or laws
we can live better, if men shall fulfil Christ's law."
"Yes; but what guarantees that men will fulfil it?
Nothing. They say, You have experienced life with
power and laws, and life did not become perfect; now
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experience the absence of power and of laws, and life will
become perfect; you have no right to deny this, because
you have not experienced it.' But it is here that the
sophistry of the godless people becomes obvious. Saying
this, do they not say the same that a man would say to a
farmer? Thou sowest in the ground and coverest the
seed, and yet the crop is not such as thou desirest; I
advise thee, sow in the sea, and it will be better; and
thou hast no right to deny my proposition, because thou
hast not tried it.'"
"Yes, that is true," said Julius, who was beginning to
But this is not enough," continued the physician.
" Let us assume what is insipid and impossible: let us
assume that the foundations of the Christian teaching
can be communicated to all men by the taking of certain
drops, and that suddenly all men will fulfil Christ's teach-
ing, loving God and their neighbours and fulfilling the
commandments. Let us assume this, and yet the path of
life according to their teaching will not stand scrutinizing.
There will be no life, and life will come to an end. Their
teacher was a young vagabond, and such will be his fol-
lowers, and, according to our supposition, the whole world.
Those who live now will continue living, but their chil-
dren will not, or only one in ten will remain living.
According to their teaching, all children must be equal to
every mother and to every father, both one's own children
and those of strangers. How will these children be
saved, when we see that the whole passion, the whole love,
for these children, which is implanted in the mothers,
will scarcely keep the children from destruction; what
will happen when this passion passes into compassion,
which is equal for all children? Who is to be taken,
and what child is to be saved ? Who will sit up nights
with a sick, ill-smelling child, if not its mother ? Nature
has made a protection for the child in the love of its
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mother; they take it away and put nothing in its place.
Who will teach the son ? Who will comprehend his
soul, if it is not his father ? Who will ward off danger
from him? All this is done away with The whole life,
that is, the continuation of the human race, is done away
This too is true," said Julius, carried away by the
"Yes, my friend, leave thy raving and live rationally,
especially now, when upon thee lie such great, important,
and real obligations. It is a matter of honour that you
carry them out. Thou hast lived up to the second period
of thy doubts, but go on, and there will be no more
doubts. Thy first and most indubitable duty is the edu-
cation of thy children, whom thou hast neglected: thy
duty toward them consists in making of them most worthy
servants of thy country. The existing political structure
has given thee everything thou hast, and thou shouldst
serve it thyself and give it worthy servants in the persons
of thy children. Thy second duty is to serve society.
Thy failure has grieved and disenchanted thee, this is
a temporary accident. Nothing is given without struggle,
and the joy of the triumph is strong only when the
victory has been difficult. Leave it to thy wife to amuse
herself with the prattling of Christian writers; but be
thyself a man and educate thy children to be men. Be-
gin thy life with the consciousness of duty, and all thy
doubts will fall off by themselves. They have come to
thee anyway from your morbid state. Fulfil thy duty in
relation to thy country by serving it and by preparing thy
children for this service. Put them on their feet, that
they may be able to take thy place, and then peacefully
abandon thyself to the life which attracts thee, but until
then thou hast no right to it; and if thou didst devote
thyself to it, thou wouldst find nothing but suffering."
EITHER the medicinal herbs or the counsels of the wise
physician acted upon Julius, and he soon braced up, and
his thoughts about the Christian life appeared to him wild
The physician remained a few days, and then went
away. Julius got up soon after, and, taking advantage of
his counsels, began a new life. He engaged teachers for his
children and himself watched their studies. He passed
his own time in public affairs, and soon attained great
importance in the city.
Thus Julius lived a year, and during this time he did
not even think of the Christians. But, at the expiration
of a year, a court was held in his city to judge the
A lieutenant had arrived in Cilicia from the Roman
emperor for the purpose of crushing the Christian propa-
ganda. Julius had heard of the measures taken against
the Christians, and, assuming that this had no reference
to the Christian community in which Pamphylius was
living, did not give it any thought. But once, as he was
walking over the forum to the place of his business, he
was accosted by a middle-aged, poorly clad man, whom
he did not recognize at first: this was Pamphylius. He
walked up to Julius, leading a boy by his hand.
"Good morning, friend," Pamphylius said to him. "I
have a great request to make of thee, but I do not know
whether thou wilt, during the present persecutions of the
Christians, recognize me as thy friend, and whether thou
WALK IN THE LIGHT 59
art not afraid to lose thy place by keeping company with
I am not afraid of any one," replied Julius, and in
proof of it, I beg thee to go with me to my house. I
shall even miss my business at the forum in order to
speak with thee and be useful to thee. Come with me!
Whose child is this ?"
He is my son."
"Really, I ought not to have asked thee. I recognize
thy face in him, and I recognize these blue eyes, and I need
not ask who thy wife is: it is that beauty whom I saw
several years ago with thee."
Thou hast guessed it," replied Pamphylius. "Soon
after thou sawest her with me, she became my wife."
The friends entered Julius's house. Julius called out
his wife and gave her the boy, and himself led Pam-
phylius into his luxurious, secluded room.
"Here thou mayest say everything,- no one will hear
us," said Julius.
I am not afraid if I am heard," replied Pamphylius.
"My request even does not consist in this, that the
Christians who have been taken should not be judged
and executed, but only that they should be permitted
openly to confess their faith."
And Pamphylius told him that the Christians who had
been seized by the authorities had sent word about their
condition to their community. Elder Cyril, knowing of
Pamphylius's relations to Julius, had commissioned Pam-
phylius to go and intercede for the Christians. The
Christians were not asking to be pardoned : they regarded
the witnessing to the truth of Christ's teaching as their
calling. They could bear witness to this by a long life of
eighty years, or prove it even by their martyrdom. Either
was a matter of indifference to them, and carnal death,
which was inevitable, was equally devoid of terror and
full of joy for them, whether now or in fifty years; but
60 WALK IN THE LIGHT
they wished their life to be useful to men, and so sent
Pamphylius to beg that the judgment and the execution
should be public."
Julius was surprised at Pamphylius's request, but
promised that he would do everything in his power.
"I have promised thee my aid," said Julius, but I
promise it to thee in consideration of my friendship for
thee and that especial, good feeling of meekness which
thou hast always evoked in me; but I must confess that
I consider your teaching senseless and harmful. I can
judge of this, because I myself lately, in a moment of dis-
enchantment and sickness, during my dejection of spirit,
shared your views and came very near abandoning every-
thing and joining you. I know whereon your error is
based, because I have myself passed through it, on the
love of self, on the weakness of spirit, and on morbid
feebleness; it is a faith for women, and not for men."
"Because, while you recognize that in human nature
lies dissension and violence, which results from dissension,
you do not wish to take part in them and to teach them
to others, and, by not doing your share, you do not wish to
make use of the structure of the world, which is based
on violence. Is this just ? The world has always existed
with rulers. These rulers have taken upon themselves
the whole labour and the whole responsibility, and have
protected us against external and internal enemies. And
in return for this, we, the subjects, have submitted to
these rulers, have bestowed honours upon them, or have
aided them in their service. But you, instead of partici-
pating with your labours in the affairs of state, and in the
measure of your deserts rising higher and higher in
the estimation of men, have, in your pride, at once recog-
nized all men to be equal, in order that you may not
consider any one higher than yourselves, but may consider
yourselves equal to Cesar. You think so yourselves and
WALK IN THE LIGHT 61
yL'u tn-tch others i d. Amn] fir feeble-minded and lazy
pl:.el thi- *.ifeoce i-, gr:at 1 Instead of labouring, every
sla\e v.ill at i_,O: reg-rd hims.el as equal to Coesar. But
mir.are than tint: Lyu ldeny the tribute, and slavery, and
the courts, and executions, and war, everything which
holds men together. If men obeyed you, society would
fall to pieces and we should return to the time of savagery.
You preach in the state the destruction of the state. But
your very existence is conditioned by the state. If that
did not exist, neither would you. You would all be the
slaves of the Scythians or of wild men, the first that should
know of your existence. You are like an ulcer which
destroys the body, but which can appear and feed only on
the body. And the living body struggles with it and
crushes it It is this that we are doing with you, and we
cannot help but do so. And in spite of my promise to
help thee in the fulfilment of your desire, I look upon your
teaching as very harmful and base: base, because I con-
sider it dishonest and unjust to gnaw the breast which
feeds thee It is base to make use of the benefits of the
structure of the state and, without taking part in this
structure, by which the state is supported, to destroy it!"
"In thy words," said Pamphylius, "there would be
much that is just, if we really lived as thou thinkest.
But thou dost not know our life, and hast formed a
wrong impression about it. Those means for subsistence,
which we employ for ourselves, are obtainable without
the aid of violence. It is hard for you, with your habits
of luxury, to form an idea how little a man needs in order
to exist without privations. A man is so constructed that
in a healthy state he can with his hands earn much more
than what he needs for his own subsistence. But by
living together, we are able, with the work in common,
without any effort to sustain our children, and our old
men, and the sick, and the feeble. Thou sayest of the
rulers that they defend men against outer and inner
WALK IN THE LIGHT
enemies, but we love our enemies, and so we have
none. Thou affirmest that we, the Christians, provoke
in the slave the desire to be a Caesar; we, on the contrary,
both in word and in deed preach one thing,--patient
humility and labour, the lowest kind of labour,-the
labour of the working man. We know nothing and
understand nothing about affairs of state; we know this
much, and this we know indubitably, that our good is
only there where the good of other men is, and we seek
this good; the good of all men is in union, but union is
not obtained through violence, but through love. The
violence of a robber against a passer-by is as provoking to
us as the violence exerted by an army over captives, by
judges over those who are to be punished, and we cannot
consciously take part in either. We cannot without labour
make use of violence. Violence is reflected in us, but our
participation in violence does not consist in applying it,
but in bearing it humbly, when exerted against us."
"But tell me, Pamphylius, why are people hostile to
you, and why do they persecute, drive, and kill you ?
Why does your teaching of love lead to dissension ?"
The cause is not in us, but in you. We put above
everything else the divine law, which governs our con-
science and reason. We can comply only with those laws
of state which are not contrary to the divine laws: To
Cesar the things which are Caesar's and to God the things
which are God's.' And it is for this that men persecute us.
We are not able to stop this hostility against us, because
we cannot forget the truth, which we have come to com-
prehend; we cannot begin to live contrary to our con-
science and to our reason. Of this hostility which our
faith provokes in others against us, our teacher has said :
' Think not that I am come to send peace on earth; I
came not to send peace, but a sword!' Christ has ex-
perienced this hostility Himself, and he has warned us,
His disciples, more than once of it: 'The world hateth
WALK IN THE LIGHT
me,' He said, because the works thereof are evil. If ye
were of the world, the world would love you; but be-
cause ye are not of the world, but I have freed you from
the world, therefore the world hateth you. The time
cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he
doeth God service.' But, like Christ, we are not afraid of
those who kill the body, and so they can do nothing
more with us. 'And this is their condemnation, that
light is come into the world, and men loved darkness
rather than light, because their deeds were evil.' There
is no reason for losing courage on account of this, because
the truth prevails. The sheep hear the shepherd's voice
and follow him, because they know his voice. And
Christ's flock does not perish, but grows, drawing new
sheep toward itself from all the countries of the earth, for,
' The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the
sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and
whither it goeth.'"
"Yes," Julius interrupted him, but are there many
among you who are sincere ? You are frequently accused
of pretending that you are martyrs, and that you are glad
to perish for the truth, but the truth is not on your side.
You are proud madmen, who destroy all the foundations
of social life !"
Pamphylius made no reply, and looked sadly at Julius.
WHILE Julius was saying this, Pamphylius's little son
came running into the room and pressed close to his
In spite of all the affection of Julius's wife, he ran away
from her and came to his father's side. Pamphylius drew
a sigh, patted his son, and rose up, but Julius held him
back, asking him to stay for dinner and talk with him
I am surprised," said Julius, at your having married
and had children. I cannot understand in what way
you Christians can, in the absence of property, educate
your children. How can your mothers live calmly,
knowing that your children are not provided for ?"
Why are our children provided for less than yours ?"
"Because you have no slaves and no property. My
wife is very much inclined toward Christianity, and at
one time she even wanted to abandon this life, this
was six years ago. I wanted to go with her: but first of
all she was frightened by that uncertainty, that want,
which presented itself for her children, and I could not
help but agree with her. That was during my sickness.
At that time all my life was loathsome to me and I
wanted to give everything up. But my wife's fears and,
on the other hand, the elucidations by my physician, who
cured me, persuaded me that the Christian life, as you
lead it, is possible and good for those who have no fami-
lies, but that there is no place in it for married people,
for mothers with children, and that with life as you
understand it, life, that is, the human race, must come to
WALK IN THE LIGHT
an end. And this is quite true. Therefore thy appear-
ance with thy child is particularly surprising to me."
"Not only one child; at home are left a suckling babe
and a three-year-old girl."
"Explain to me how this is done. I do not under-
stand it. Five years ago I was ready to give every-
thing up and to join you; but I had children, and I
understood that, no matter how well it would be for me,
I had no right to sacrifice my children, and so I remained
living as before, in order to bring them up under the con-
ditions in which I myself grew up and lived."
It is strange," said Pamphylius, how differently we
judge! We say, If grown persons live in a worldly
fashion, this may be forgiven, because they are already
spoiled, but for children, that would be terrible To
live with them in the world and to offend them! Woe
unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be
that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the
offence cometh!' Thus says our teacher, and I do not
say this for a retort, but because it is really so. The
chief need of living in such a way as we all live results
for us from this, that among us there are children, those
beings of whom it is said, Unless ye be as children, ye
shall not enter the kingdom of God.'"
"But how can a Christian family be without any defi-
"According to our faith, there is but one means, the
work of love for men, while yours is violence. It may
be destroyed, as wealth is destroyed, and then only work
and the love of men is left. We consider that what is
the foundation of everything, that we must hold on to,
and that we ought to increase. And when this exists,
the family lives and even prospers. Yes," continued
Pamphylius, "if I had any doubts as to the veracity of
Christ's teaching and wavered in its execution, these
doubts and waverings of mine would have ended at once,
WALK IN THE LIGHT
if I thought of the lot of the children who are brought up
by the pagans under conditions in which thou hast grown
up and bringest up thy children. No matter how we may
arrange life with palaces, slaves, and the imported produc-
tions of foreign countries, the life of the majority of men
remains what it ought to be. The only provision for
life will always be the love of men and labour. We
want to free ourselves and our children from these condi-
tions, and not by means of violence, but with love, do
we make men serve us, and, strange to say, the more we.
think we secure ourselves in this manner, the more we
deprive ourselves of the true, natural, and safe provision,
of love. The greater the power of the ruler, the less love
there is for him. The same is true of the other provision,
of labour. The more a man frees himself from labour
and becomes accustomed to luxury, the less able he be-
comes to labour, the more he is deprived of the true and
eternal provision. And these conditions, under which
men place their children, they call provisions Take thy
son and mine, and send them both to find the way, to
give an order, to do what is necessary, and thou wilt see
which of the two will do better; and try to have the
two educated by others: whom will they take more
readily? No, do not say those terrible words, that the
Christian life is possible only for the childless. On the
contrary, it may be said: it is pardonable only for
the childless to live a pagan life. But woe unto him
that shall offend one of these little ones!"
Julius was silent.
"Yes," he said, maybe thou art right, but the educa-
tion of the children has been begun, and the best teachers
teach them. Let them learn everything we know, no
harm can come from it. There is still time for me and
for them. They can come to you, when they shall have
strength and shall find it necessary. But I can do so later
after I have put my children on their feet and am left free."
WALK IN THE LIGHT 67
"Know the truth, and ye shall be free," said Pamphy-
lius. Christ gives full liberty at once; the worldly
teaching will never give it."
And Pamphylius went away with his son.
The execution was public: Julius saw there Pamphy-
lius, as he, with other Christians, was taking away the
bodies of the martyrs.
He saw him; but, fearing the higher authorities, he did
not go up to him and did not call him up.
ANOTHER twenty years passed. Julius's wife had died.
His life proceeded in the cares of a public activity, in the
search after power, which now was given him, and now
escaped from him. His fortune was great and kept in-
His sons were grown up: his second son more espe-
cially began to lead life on a broad scale. He made
holes in the bottom of the bucket in which the fortune
accumulated and, in proportion as the fortune grew, the
leaks also were increased. Here began Julius's struggle
with his sons, precisely such as had been his with his
father: there were malice, hatred, jealousy.
At that time a new chief deprived Julius of favour.
Julius was abandoned by his former flatterers, and exile
awaited him. He went to Rome, to make explanations;
he was not admitted, and was ordered to return home.
Upon returning he found his son with dissipated youths.
The rumour had spread in Cilicia that Julius had died,
and the son was celebrating the death of his father.
Julius was beside himself, and struck his son so hard
that he fell down as one dead. Then Julius went to his
wife's apartments. There he found the Gospel, in which
he read: Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy
laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon
you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart;
and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is
easy, and my burden light."
"Yes," thought Julius, He has been calling me for a
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long time. I did not believe Him and was insubmissive
and evil, and my yoke was heavy and my burden
Julius sat for a long time with the open Gospel on his
knees, reflecting on his whole past life, and recalling
everything which Pamphylius had told him at different
times. Then Julius arose and went to his son, whom,
to his surprise, he found on his legs, and he was inex-
pressibly happy, because he had not injured him by his
Without saying a word to his son, Julius went out
into the street and walked in the direction of the Chris-
tian community. He walked the whole day and in the
evening stopped for the night at the house of a peasant.
In the room which he entered lay a man. At the noise
of steps the man arose. It was the physician.
No, now thou shalt no longer dissuade me," exclaimed
Julius. I am now going there for the third time, and
I know that only there shall I find rest."
Where ?" asked the physician.
"With the Christians."
"Yes, maybe thou wilt find rest, but thou hast not ful-
filled thy duty. There is no manliness in thee: thy mis-
fortunes vanquish thee. Not thus do real philosophers
act. Misfortune is only a fire in which the gold is tested.
Thou hast passed through the crucible. Now thou art
wanting, and now thou fleest! It is now that thou
oughtest to test men and thyself. Thou hast acquired
true wisdom, and this thou oughtest to use for the good
of thy country. What would happen to the citizens, if
those who have come to know men, their passions and
conditions of life, instead of sharing their knowledge,
their experience, in behalf of society, should bury it in
their search after peace? Thy wisdom of life has been
acquired in society, and thou oughtest to give it to the
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But I have no wisdom I am all in error! Though
my errors are old, they have not on that account been
changed to wisdom, just as water, no matter how old and
foul it may be, will not be changed to wine."
Thus spoke Julius, and, seizing his cloak, he hurriedly
left the house and without rest continued his journey.
At the end of the next day he arrived at the community
of the Christians.
He was welcomed by them, though they did not know
that he was a friend of Pamphylius, who was beloved
and respected by all. At the table Pamphylius saw his
friend, and he ran up to him with joy and embraced
"Here I have come," said Julius. "Tell me what to
do, and I shall obey thee."
Have no thought of it," said Pamphylius. Come
And Pamphylius took Julius to the house where the
newcomers stopped, and, pointing a bed out to him, he
"Thou wilt see thyself wherewith thou canst serve
people, when thou hast had a chance to see our life; but,
that thou mayest know how to dispose of thy leisure, I
shall appoint thee some work for to-morrow. They are
now gathering the grapes in our vineyards: go and help
them. Thou wilt thyself find out where thy place is."
On the next morning Julius went into the vineyard.
The first was a young vineyard, which was laden with
clusters of grapes. Young people were gathering them.
All the places were occupied, and Julius could not find
any place there for himself, though he walked up and
down the vineyard for a long time. He went farther,
where there was an older vineyard, and where there was
less of the fruit; but even here Julius found nothing to
do: all worked in pairs, and there was no place for him.
He went farther still, and entered an overgrown vineyard.
WALK IN THE LIGHT
It was all empty. The vines were blasted and crooked,
and, as Julius thought, barren.
"So this is my life," he said to himself.
"If I had come the first time, it would have been as
the fruit of the first vineyard. If I had come when I
started for the second time, it would have been like the
fruit of the second vineyard; but here is my life now: it
is like these useless, overgrown vines, which are good for
And Julius was frightened at what he had done; he
was frightened at the punishment which awaited him for
having wasted his life to no purpose. And Julius was
grieved, and he said aloud:
"I am not good for anything and cannot do anything
And he did not rise from the spot, and wept because
he had lost what could no longer be returned. And
suddenly he heard an old man's voice, which called him:
Labour, my brother !"
Julius looked back, and he saw an old man, bent with
years, white as snow, who with difficulty moved his feet.
He was standing at a vine and collecting the sweet
clusters which were left here and there. Julius walked
over to him.
"Labour, dear brother! Labour is joyful!"
And he showed him how to look for the clusters which
were left here and there. Julius went to look for them
and he brought some and deposited them in the old man's
basket. And the old man said to him in reply:
"See whether these clusters are worse than those col-
lected in the other vineyards! 'Walk in the light, while
ye have light,' our master has said. It is the will of Him
that sent me that every man who seeth the son and
believeth on Him should have everlasting life, and I will
bring him to life at the last day. For God sent not His
son into the world to condemn the world: but that the
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world through Him might be saved. He that believeth
on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is
condemned already, because he hath not believed in the
name of the only begotten son of God. And this is
the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and
men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds
were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the
light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should
be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the
light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are
wrought in God.' Grieve not, my son! We are all sons
of God and His servants! We are all His army! Dost
thou think he has no other servants but thee? And
what if thou hadst, in thy full strength, devoted thyself
to His service, shouldst thou have done everything He
wants, everything that ought to be done to men in order
to establish His kingdom ? Thou sayest that thou
shouldst have done twice, ten times, a hundred times as
much. But if you did a million times as much as all
other men, what would this be in God's work? Nothing.
There is no limit and no end to God's work, as there is
not to God. Come to Him, and be not a labourer, but a son,
and thou shalt become a participator of infinite God and
His work. There is no great and no small with God, but
there is what is straight and what is crooked. Enter the
straight path of life and thou shalt be with God, and thy
work will be neither small nor great, but the work of God.
Remember that in heaven there is more joy on account of
one sinner than of a hundred righteous. The worldly
affairs, all that which thou hast missed, have only shown
thee thy sin, -and thou hast repented. And since thou
hast repented, thou hast found the straight path; walk on
it with God, and think not of the past, of what is greater
and what lesser. For God all the living are equal!
There is one God and one life !"
And Julius calmed down, and began to live and to
WALK IN THE LIGHT 73
work for his brothers according to his strength and the
best he knew how. And thus he lived in joy for another
twenty years, and did not see how he died a carnal
Ydsnaya Polydna, October, 1890.
THOUGHTS AND APHORISMS
Collected from L. N. Tolst6y's Private Corre-
spondence, by D. R. Kudryivtsev
THOUGHTS AND APHORISMS
Collected from L. N. Tolst6y's Private Corre-
spondence, by D. R. Kudryivtsev
LETTER FROM L. N. TOLST6Y TO D. R.
DEAR BROTHER: I received your book and read it
partly with pleasure, recalling those trains of thought and
those sentiments which I experienced, when I expressed
the thoughts which are contained in it, and partly with
annoyance and sorrow, because I have expressed so ob-
scurely what I wanted to express.
I have for a long time been struggling with vanity and
egoism, and have conquered these to such an extent that
I no longer experience a disagreeable sensation at the
thought that I shall be condemned for my too bold,
thoughtless, and frequently insufficiently grounded ex-
pression of my thoughts, the more so, since I agree with
you that here and there something from what you have
collected may be of use to men.
I should never have thought of publishing this book,
but, once it is out, I have nothing against it, and only
thank you for the sympathy which you express.
1 From this collection extracts previously given are omitted. -
THE whole misunderstanding is based on this, that,
speaking of religion, the positivists understand by it
something quite different from what I do and what Con-
fucius, Lao-tse, Buddha, Christ, have said about it.
According to the opinion of the positivists, it is neces-
sary to invent, or at least to think out, a religion, and it is
necessary to think out such a religion as will have a good
effect upon men and will agree with science, and will
combine and embrace everything and, warming up people
and encouraging them to do good, will not impair their
But I understand (I flatter myself with the hope that I
am not alone in this) religion quite differently.
Religion is the consciousness of those truths which are
universally accessible to all men, in all their situations,
at all times, and are as indubitable as that two times two
The business of religion is to find and express these
truths, and when this truth is expressed, it will inevitably
change the life of men; and so what the positivists call a
scheme is not at all an arbitrary assertion by anybody,
but an expression of those laws which are always un-
changeable and are felt by all men.
The business of religion is like geometry.
The relation of the sides to the hypotenuse has always
THOUGHTS AND APHORISMS 79
.xristtd, and lin l always knew that there was some kind
of a ri.latioi between them; but Pythagoras pointed it
out :cail I.rove-.l it, a'.l this relation became the possession
of all men. But to. say that the scheme of morality is
not good, .ie:ause it excludes other schemes, is the same
as saying that the theorem of the relation of the sides to
the hypotenuse is not good, because it impairs the other
It is not right to reject Christ's scheme (as they say),
or the truth (as I say), on the ground that it does not fit
in with the invented religion of humanity and excludes
the other schemes (as they express it), or the lie (as I call
it); it can be rejected only by proving that it is not the
Religion is not composed of a conglomerate of words
which may act well upon people; religion is composed of
simple, apparent, clear, indubitable moral truths, which
are separated from the chaos of false and deceptive judg-
ments; and such are the truths of Christ.
If I found such truths in Katk6v, I should involun-
tarily accept them at once.
On this lack of comprehension of what I, and all other
religious men, consider religion to be, and on the desire to
put in place of it a definite form of a propaganda, is all mis-
What for us forms the whole meaning of life, our faith,
is known by many; but, unfortunately, very few know
that this is not merely the chief, but even the only thing,
and that it is not right to speak of it with adornments
It is not right to speak of it; it has to be wept over
with tears, and when these sincere tears are wanting, it is
not right to speak of it on purpose, it is not right
to desecrate it with a frivolous touch.
80 THOUGHTS AND APHORISMS
In Kingsley there is a beautiful philosophical explana-
tion of the Son,--the idea of a man, righteous for
himself, for God. In order to be such a righteous man,
it is necessary to be insulted, tortured, hanged, hated by
all, and yet righteous.
(From the Vedas)
Be they horses, cows, elephants, -everything which
lives, walks, swims, and flies; everything which even does
not move, like the trees and the grass, -all that is the
eyes of Reason.
Everything is formed by Reason. The universe is the
eyes of Reason, and Reason is its foundation. Reason is
the one existence.
Man, by surrendering himself to Reason and its serv-
ice, leaves this world of phenomena and enters into a
blissful and free world and becomes immortal.
Confucius does not mention Mang-Ti, the personal God,
but always speaks only of heaven. Here is his relation
to the spiritual world. He is asked, How are we to
serve the deceased spirits ?"
He said: "Since you do not know how to serve the
living, how shall you serve the dead ?"
They asked him about death.
Since you do not know life, why do you ask about
He was asked whether the dead knew of our serving them.
He said: "If I answered that they do know, I am
afraid that you would ruin your lives serving them. If I
told you that they do not know, I am afraid you would
entirely forget about them. You have no cause to know
I110UGHTS" AND APHORISMS
what the dead know. There is no need of it. You will
know everything in its proper time."
There were many thieves then. They asked him how
to be freed from them.
If you yourselves were not greedy, you would pay them
money, and they would stop stealing."
They asked him whether it is right to kill the bad for
the benefit of the good.
"Why kill? Let your wishes be good. The highest
is just like the wind, and the lowest like the grass. The
wind blows, and the grass bends. The whole question is
what and whom to consider the highest.
"To consider the highest is to raise, to respect the good.
"To consider the lowest is to drop, to despise the evil
without any compromise."
The uncertainty as to what awaits us ahead, beyond
the limit of our spiritual vision, this uncertainty, this
mystery, is the only possibility of our life, because it
secures the forward movement.
We walk, as it were, through an underground passage
and see ahead of us the illuminated point of the exit; but
that we may reach this exit, ahead of us, in front of us
must be an emptiness.
The eternal life is eternal for the very reason that
it deploys before us infinitely. If it were completely
unfolded before us, and we could comprehend it here, in
our temporal, carnal existence, it would not be the eternal
life, as there would be nothing left beyond it.
People generally think little about the meaning of the
memory in connection with the life of the spirit, and yet
it has a great, and even a mysterious meaning.
82 THOUGHTS AND APHORISMS
During his carnal life, a man only occasionally reaches
that elevation of comprehension which alone gives the
meaning and true joy of his life.
This condition is not uninterruptedly maintained in
our soul. It bursts forth from time to time and illu-
mines our path, as though by disconnected flashes of
another, higher life. Why is this so ? Why do we not
always maintain ourselves on that height of spiritual
illumination to which we have risen ?
This is due to the defect of memory.
Something distracts our attention and we forget.
When we again rise to that height, we recall the former
occasions when we were in the same condition, and then
all the former illuminations of our spirit blend for us into
the one, true life outside time and space. Then the of-
fences of the carnal life again distract our attention, and
we again disappear from the sphere of the true life and
forget it. In respect to the true life we fall into a state
of thoughtlessness, from which we again awaken, when
with the new elevation of the spirit memory returns to us.
Now, with our carnal existence, this phenomenon pre-
sents itself to us in the form of memory; but when we
leave the limits of the carnal life, that which is in the
memory will be life itself.
Repentance is connected with spiritual growth, just as
the breaking of the shell is connected with the hatching
of the birdling.
The breaking of the egg or the seed is necessary for
the germ to begin to grow and be subjected to the action
of air and light. The breaking of the egg is, at the same
time, a consequence of the growth of the germ.
The same is true of repentance.
If there is no repentance, there is no forward move-