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Thread: How did the Russians manage to recover the religious passion after 74 years of commu1997 days old

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    Default How did the Russians manage to recover the religious passion after 74 years of commu

    How did the Russians manage to recover the religious passion after 74 years of communism?

    I mean religion was banned by the Communist party but now they are probably the only place where Christianity is growing.
    Last edited by sean; 2012-05-03 at 14:52.

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    Russians are the people in Europe (at least of those mentioned here) who attend church the least.

    http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/re...rch-attendance

    This questions fits more for Poles, as they are the most religious people of ex-commie states.
    The Future was better before

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    I was under the impression Russians were experiencing a religious boom.
    There are some articles about that:
    http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Europ...lieving-nation

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    something like 20-30% of russians are atheists and many of the 55-60% of people who are eastern orthodox don't attend church.

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    I've had a friend tell me that most Russians are Atheists and even the ones who identify as Christian don't really care all that much about religion.

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    Orthodox Christians in general are not especially religious. There are some who attend church every week, but for most, attendance is sporadic, and often limited to major religious holidays. However, you are unlikely to convince an Orthodox Christian to convert, being Orthodox is often tied into their ethnicity (like Ukrainians, Serbs, Greeks). Pew Research survey indicates, that 57% of Russians believe, that being an Orthodox Christian is somewhat important to being truly Russian. In Russia, they believe that one's religion should coincide with one's ethnicity. Being Muslim is fine if you are Turkic, and it's okay to be Buddhist if you're a Mongol, or Catholic if you're a German. But if you are a Slav, you must be Orthodox! Also, Russian women have higher levels of religious commitment than Russian men. The Russian Orthodox Church has traditionally worked with the State to oppress the citizens, not counting the brief interregnum, when the Soviet State did its own oppressing without help from the Church. Actually, the idea of the Orthodox Church and the State working hand-in-hand, goes all the way back to the Byzantine Empire. After the Glorious Revolution of 1688, when the wars with Dutch Republic ended with the junction of the Dutch and English royal families, the Church of England was used precisely, as Putin is using the Orthodox Church, as a focus of national unity and social harmony. However, William of Orange didn't have the Internet to contend with. Many Orthodox Christians throughout Central and Eastern Europe view Russia, as a valuable counterbalance to Catholic influence in the region. There's also a prediction, that by the year 2030, China will have more church-going Christians than the United States.

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    a Russian once answered the question with the very cool remark, that a human needs any religion. If one fades away he'll soon finds another.

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    Quote Originally Posted by David Noi View Post
    a Russian once answered the question with the very cool remark, that a human needs any religion. If one fades away he'll soon finds another.
    ^^ Your post makes me think of this interesting passage from Dmitry Glukhovsky’s science fiction novel Metro 2033:

    “The light was extinguished. The swift, rustling steps of the savage and the light tread of the child faded into the distance. The priest gave a cough and said to Artyom, ‘I’ll have a little chat here with you if you aren’t opposed to it. We usually don’t take captives unless they are children, and then they are all puny and born sickly . . . But we are seeing more and more adults who are deaf. I would be glad to talk with them and maybe they would not mind, only, well, they eat them too quickly . . .’

    ‘Why then do you teach them that it is bad to eat people?’ Artyom asked.

    ‘The Worm will cry there and so on? Well, how can I put it? It is for them in the future. For you, of course, you will miss this moment, and even me, too, but now the basis of a future civilization is being laid down: of a culture which will live with nature in the world. Cannibalism is a necessary evil for them. There is nothing without animal protein, you see. But the legends will remain, and when the direct need to kill and stuff your face with those like you fades away, they will stop doing it. Only then will the Great Worm remember. It is unfortunate only to be living in this dandy time . . .’ The old man again began to laugh unpleasantly.

    ‘You know, I’ve already seen so many things in the metro,’ Artyom said. ‘At one station they believe that if you dig deeply enough, you can dig all the way to hell. At another, that we already are living on the threshold of paradise, because the final battle of good and evil is over and those who survived were chosen for entry into the Heavenly Kingdom. After that, the story about your Worm doesn’t sound all that convincing somehow. Do you at least believe in it yourself?’

    ‘What’s the difference what I or the other priests believe in?’ The old man grinned. ‘You won’t be alive much longer, just a few hours, so I’ll just tell you something. One cannot be so frank with someone as with he who will carry all his revelations to the grave. So, what I myself believe in is not important. The main thing is that the people believe. It is difficult to come to believe in a god whom I have created myself.’ The priest stopped for a short while, thinking, and then continued. ‘How could I explain it to you? When I was a student, I studied philosophy and psychology at the university, although I doubt that’s anything to you. And I had a professor: an instructor of cognitive psychology, a most knowledgeable man, who laid out the intellectual process systematically - he was a real pleasure to listen to. And then I put to him a question as all others do at that age: Does God exist? I had read various books, had conversations, as is customary, and I was inclined to the view that most likely He did not. And somehow I decided that this professor in particular, a great expert on the human soul, could answer for me precisely this question that so pained me. I went to see him in his office, on the pretext of discussing a paper, and then I asked, “In your opinion, Ivan Mikhalych, does God actually exist?” Then he really surprised me. For me, he said, this question isn’t worth asking. I myself was from a family of believers, used to the idea that He exists. From the psychological point of view, I did not try to analyze the truth because I did not want to. And generally, he said, for me it was not so much a question of knowledge based on principle, as everyday behaviour. My faith was not that I was sincerely convinced of the existence of a higher power, but that I was fulfilling the prescribed commandments, praying at night and going to church. I would be better for it, more at peace. And that’s it.’ The old man went silent.

    ‘And what?’ Artyom couldn’t contain himself.

    ‘Whether I believe in the Great Worm or not isn’t so very important. But commandments from divine lips live for centuries. Just one more thing: create a god and teach his word. And believe me, the Great Worm is no worse than other gods and has survived many of them.’

    Artyom closed his eyes. Neither Dron nor the chief of this surprising tribe, nor even such strange creations as Vartan, had the slightest doubt that the Great Worm exists. For them it was a given, the only explanation of what they could see around them, the only authority for action and a measure of good and evil. What else could a man who had never seen anything except the metro believe in? But there was in the legends of the Worm something that Artyom was still unable to understand.”
    “And, furthermore, that some people have a sex life and others don’t just because some are more attractive than others. I wanted to acknowledge that if people don’t have a sex life, it’s not for some moral reason, it’s just because they’re ugly. Once you’ve said it, it sounds obvious, but I wanted to say it.” — Michel Houellebecq

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