By the time your finished with this post, you’ll have realized it’s less a book review, and more a reminder that I often feel lonely in a crowd of my Christian brothers.
Demons was written by Fyodor Dostoevsky. As an aside, he is much better known, in North America, anyway, for his frustrating and authentic The Brothers Karamazov, and the much lesser known The Idiot.
And, surely, you must read them all! And, on your Amazon Kindle, no less.
In any event, Demons is, essentially, and this is my interpretation, about how liberalism leads to socialism, then leads to nihilism, and how life, according to Dostoevsky, boils down to a choice between Christianity – and… suicide.
Well… Mister, that’s a barn-burning, possibly teeth-gnashingly dogmatic, position (if this makes you think in some terms of anything related to doggy-style, it might be appropriate, and you might have the emotional maturity of a twelve year old [like me, some times], but not in the immediate context).
Demons is a very engaging novel. And, more suspenseful than the others, as relayed above, of Dostoevsky – both because it’s more violent (being about socialist nihilist anarchists and all), and because it takes a long time to get a sense for what motivates the main character, Nikolai Stavrogin (and, that’s where I might draw a comparison to myself and my titanic and transparent struggles with Christianity as it related to the Jesus Christ element).
However, Dostoevsky clarifies his thinking, interestingly, through his mouthpiece Tikhon, in that absolute doubt immediately proceeds absolute faith; thus Stavrogin, as the quintessential doubter, is also the closest among the main cast of characters to true Christianity.
This idea, that a person must not give in to his ideas; must strain against them to be a person, is a fascinating one…
But, see… There’s no word for it, this, effort. And, that my be the core of my own struggle. I can’t put my finger on what’s missing. Or, maybe why it’s missing.
Unfortunately, there’s probably a really good word for it.
It eludes me.
Not much does. And, this is a big one.
However, I think caring is important; as is the search for that word – possibly it’s meaning, all the more.
Stick with me. And, feel free to come and get me.
Along the way, I’ll likely read everything, and talk to everyone, I can to find that word. And, the light and truth I learn gives me scienter, and the necessity of my own requirement to be naught less than a beacon, for all. My Kobayashi Maru, perhaps not?
Listening to: Heartbreak Warfare and Free Fallin’ (the Live version) by the much too underestimated, John Mayer.
By the way… Look at the “possibly related posts” (below, minds you) automatically generated by the WordPress gods (demons?). What a hoot! Is irony afoot?
Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.
Brian Patrick Cork