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Wisdom! Let us attend

27 September 2008

Bishop Seraphim writes in his LiveJournal:

Looking into matter of ‘Sobornost’ I find a good quote from I.V.Kireyevsky who can be regarded as the initiator of the terminology:
“In the physical world each being lives and is
maintained only by the destruction of others,
while in the spiritual world the construction
of each personality constructs all and
each lives by the life of all.”

This is the idea of Sobornost and I should say is implicit in the Gospels and in full in John 17.

The quote from Kireyevsky to me illustrates not only sobornost but also the holistic nature of Orthodox anthropology, and captures the difference between the communitarian vision of Orthodoxy, in contrast to the individualist/collectivist view of much Western thought. A few Western writiers managed to capture something of a similar vision — Charles Williams, with his idea of coinherence and people like G.K. Chesterton and Dorothy Day. Any others?

Bishop Seraphim’s LiveJournal is an amazing compendium of thoughts, quotations, photos, and comments on art, literature and life. He has a large number of followers, many of whom make interesting and sometimes erudite comments.

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