Classification – name: Literary studies
Author: Anastasya G. Gacheva
Pages: 21-156
Publisher: A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences (IWL RAS Publ.)
Rights – description: Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 (СС BY-ND)
Rights – URL: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/4.0/
Language of the publication: Russian
Type of document: Research Article
Collection: Dostoevsky’s Theology
DOI: https://doi.org/10.22455/978-5-9208-0663-5-21-156
Year of publication: 2021
Place of publication: Moscow

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Anastasia Gacheva. DOSTOEVSKY’S THEOLOGY AND THE PROBLEM OF THE MORAL INTERPRETATION OF DOGMA IN RUSSIAN THEOLOGICAL AND PHILOSOPHICAL THOUGHT IN 19TH–20TH CENTURIES

About the author:

Anastasia G. Gacheva, DSc in Philology, Leading Research Fellow, A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 a, 121069 Moscow, Russia.

ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5453-0881

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Abstract:

The chapter analyses Fyodor Dostoevsky’s artistic theology within the context of the tradition of the moral interpretation of dogmas, which developed in Russia during the 19th and the first third of the 20th century. A typical feature of this tradition was the desire to bridge the gap between the temple and the outside of it, between dogmatics and ethics, making the truth of faith the rule of life. The Author shows the development of the idea of the unity of dogmas and commandments in the works of Aleksey Khomiakov, Ivan Kireevsky, Nikolay Fedorov, Vladimir Solov’ev, metropolitan Antony (Khrapovitsky), while simultaneously drawing parallels with Dostoevsky. The work takes into account Dostoevsky’s understanding of two main dogmas of Christianity: the dogma of Trinity and the two-natures dogma. The unconfused and inseparable unity of the Divine hypostases appears in Dostoevsky as an image of perfect interaction between personalities, a rule for social relations, a model of all-encompassing unity of humanity, where the right of personality is reconciled with the right of the whole. Two diary fragments dated 1864 — “Masha is lying on the table…” and “Socialism and Christianity” — are analyzed from the point of view of the Trinitarian question. Dostoevsky holds that when a personality moves towards another and enters in a relation “I” — “you”, considering the other as a face and not as a function, thus giving something to rather than taking something from the other, this personality realizes in his life the mystery of Trinity, professing it in deeds not only in words. Atomicity, antinomy, dualism are corruptions of the Trinitarian principle, while its realization is the idea of “an expanding family, a society-Church, a world that is temple. The Christology of Dostoevsky is analyzed. It is shown that Dostoevsky’s perception of Christ as “the ideal of man in flesh” should be understood not in the context of utopian thought, but as a manifestation of the idea of the deification of man, as expressed in the patristic aphorism: “For the Son of God became man so that we might become God”. The essay shows how the assertion of the equality of Christ’s two natures, Divine and human, affects Dostoevsky’s anthropology and historiosophy. Views of the writer’s contemporaries, as well as of other 20th-Century philosophers and theologians who developed the idea of a moral interpretation of the dogma of Trinity and of the Divine-humanity of Christ (archimandrite Fedor (Bukharev), bishop Ioann (Sokolov), Nikolay Fedorov, Vladimir Solov’ev, archimandrite Antony (Khrapovitsky), Viktor Nesmelov, Sergey Bulgakov, Boris Vysheslavtsev, Nikolay Lossky, Aleksandr Gorsky, Mother Maria (Elizaveta Kuz’mina- Karavaeva)) are considered.

Keywords: Fyodor Dostoevsky’s works; artistic theology, dogmatics, ethics, moral idea of the dogmas, dogma of the Trinity, Christology, philosophical and theological context.