Дорога домой. Выпуск ДД-13.8а [21июл08] [43c]
RELIGIONS IN THE BEGINNING OF THE XXI CENTURY
РУС    РУС-ENG
"...For when the pagans* (Gentiles), which have not the law,
do by nature the things contained in the law,
these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:
Which show the work of the law written in their hearts,
their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts..."
(Romans 2:14-15 KJV)(*in Russian Bible)

[11июл08] We live in the beginning of the XXI century, in a world where former colonies are becoming fully pledged countries. Citizens of these countries find ways to come, study, work and live in the developed countries. Thus, among us, one can often meet people from former colonies, who are not Christians in their faith and world outlook. Besides this in the West, in its spiritual and religious world, there is unrest and changes appear. In this work various religions and religious currents, with which one living in the West sooner or later will meet, are briefly described.
   This work is continuation "Introduction into the History of the Christian Church. Short Overview" (ДД-13.3а) and "History of the Christian Church. Short Overview" (ДД-13а).
    Contents:  PrefaceIntroductionSummary of Religions by Chapters.;
(1) Многобожие, язычество (Polytheism, Paganism)(11) Язычество в Римской империи (Paganism in Roman Empire)(12) Восточные религии (Eastern Religions)(121) Индуизм (Hinduism)(122) Буддизм (Buddhism)(123) Конфуцианство (Confucianism);
(2) Единобожие (Monotheism)(21) Древние евреи (Ancient Jews)(22) Христианство (Christianity)(221) Православие (Orthodoxy)(222) Католичество (Catholicism)(223) Протестантство (Protestantism)(224) Сектантство (Sectarians)(23) Мусульманство, Ислам (Mohammedanism, Islam)(24) Иудаизм (Judaism);
(3) Неверие (Unbelief)(31) Секуляризм (Secularism)(32) Атеизм (Atheism);
(4) Культы (Cults)(41) Нью-эйдж (New Age); (42) Некоторые культы (Some Cults);
ConclusionNotes; Literature.


Preface. [11июл08]
This short review was prepared for students of the Church-Parish Gimnazia whose students will sooner or later meet different religions or disbelief in the life. Children need to be given a short explanation, in a spirit of Christian love for humanity, for correct understanding of realities of life. If we will not do it, then, they will obtain this information from local secular, christophobic and russophobic sources. In this work only brief data is given, and for deeper information it is necessary to refer to the references (links).
    This material is intended as an Appendix to the subject of "History of the Christian Church" and "History of the Russian Church" (ДД-31а), which are taught in IV and V grades of Gimnazia (13 and 14 years old).

    We live among different confessions (faiths, creeds), not only non-Orthodox Christians, but also pagans, secularists, atheists and many others. Each religion, ideology and outlook has a complex and long history, and it is difficult to describe it briefly. In a final analysis, it is a search by people at various times, in various parts of the world, for God and a correct way of life and world outlook. All of them are based on an inborn conscience and feeling of good and evil, given to man by God, and contain some portions of the truths. The Lord God, the Creator of the whole world, is the Lover of Mankind and Father of all people, all over the world. He did not leave His children, even the most unfortunate and lost ones, without His help, guidance and Providence (care).
    The truthful information about the spiritual and religious state of the world, at the present time when there is no common agreement (consensus), is difficult to obtain, since ordinarily the information is prejudiced and is presented in a one-sided way. Secular and atheistic sources try to diminish the significance of Christianity and elevate (raise) non-Christian religions. One of the methods, is to concentrate attention on mistakes (errors) and to shut one's eyes to all that is good, and vice versa (the other way around). Non-Orthodox sources "do not notice Orthodox", or try to belittle them.


Introduction. [18июл08]
The belief in God is universal. There has not been a single people, culture or civilization in which there was no belief in a higher force or God and religions. The belief in many gods is referred to as "polytheism", and in one "monotheism". "Theos" in Greek means god.
   Conscience is built in into every person. Based on this conscience, life experience, tradition, etc., people created many religions and corresponding morals.
    Every person has a conscience. The Lord God, as a loving Father, gave to every person in the world a conscience. This inborn natural conscience, is referred to as "the natural moral law". Conscience tells us what we may do, what not, what is right, what is wrong and what is good, and what is evil. Without this feeling a person could not live, and society could not exist. Thus, natural conscience exists in all peoples of the whole world, all races and all religions. Exactly this is said in the Scriptures "I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts" (Hebrews 8:10 KJV).
    The Lord God Lover of Mankind cares about the whole world and about all creatures. He supports with His Providence all and everything, including pagans and unbelievers of all kinds. Therefore, He gave to all people conscience, ability to differentiate good from evil, and on based on this people all over the world created religions. God given natural conscience is a basis of all moralities (ethics) and religions all over the world.
    Conscience is not perfect. We see well mistakes and sins of other people, and we do not see ours. In the Gospel it says "And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?" (Matthew 7:3 KJV). Also we get used to our sins, they enter into our nature and hinder (interfere) with our lives. In the Epistle it says "For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do" (Romans 7:19 KJV).
    Christian morality, since it is based on Divine revelation, is the most noble teaching, this will be discussed more below. In religions based only on natural conscience there are deviations from Christian morality and sometimes quite large. There exists cruelty, blood revenge, murders of unneeded children, human sacrifices, slavery, etc. Their conscience does not only justify it, but even requires it, and in Christianity it is not only forbidden, but it is also unthinkable.
    Presently, in the period of general deviation from Christian values (basics), life according to our conscience, leaves much to be desired.
    Morality (according to Met. Philaret) (ДД-64.5а)

    Classification of religions. Our pre-religion (first religion), which was possessed by our earliest parents (primogenitor, ancestors) was belief in one true God. After, when people dispersed, they started to forget it and began to add something different. But, still, in all religions remained some refractions from the pre-religion.
    "Before Christianity there were many religions: (1) First there was "animism", the nature was seen as enchanted and full of spirits. Every river and tree, had spirits. (2) Then came polytheistic religions, like those of Babylonians, the Egyptians, and the Greeks – faith in many gods. (3) Then came the great religions of the East, Hinduism and Buddhism. (4) At the end came three great polytheistic religions, Judaism Christianity and Islam. From these, only Christianity was based on reason. Judaism and Islam are primarily religions of law" (p.84.) [*]
     "What does the salvation mean in different religions? Hinduists and Buddhists have a very similar approach. By means of meditation we meet (confront) with our egoistical "I" and we begin to understand, that it is the root of all of our problems. Then by means of different ways of self-renunciation we try to exclude it from our life and achieve a nirvana. This is possible only to few monks. Judaism and Islam have other formula. Both of these religions are the religions of law. They have complex rituals and rules. Because of this appeared reformed Judaism and Islam (p.287)". [*]
    [* the Review of the book: Uniqueness of Christianity. Dinesh D'Souza: (ДД-79) Narration].

    Christianization of the World. The faith of ancient Jews, expectation of the Messiah, coming of Lord Jesus Christ, His preaching, Christian Church, Christian preaching of the Gospel, Christianization and Churching in of people, all this began in the Near East, Northern Africa and Europe. In the beginning, the other world was not effected at all. It does not mean, that the Lord God Lover of Men and Providence Provider has forgotten and did not care about other people on our earth. They had "natural religions", based on natural, inborn and God given feeling of conscience.
    By having contact with Christians, the peoples of Africa, Asia, America etc., Christian enlightenment and postulates gradually entered their culture, life, laws, religions etc. Non-Christian religions, adjoining to Christian religion and culture, shaped up, straightened, and gave up ugly forms and accepted many noble Christian qualities. Thus, from their teaching started to slowly disappear cruelty, slavery, human sacrifices, bloody rituals, polygamy, murder of undesired children, abuse of children and women, xenophobia etc. Appeared women's equality, general education etc. Christianity come to them not directly, but indirectly.
    Besides the indirect influence of Christianity on their culture, there were also many Christian missionaries, non-Orthodox, they too, in most cases, positively influenced people's outlook.
    When studying present non-Christian religions, in particular how they are practised in the West, it is necessary to remember, that all of them are Christianized, initially they were not like that. Most likely they do not realize that. This is why people who are not very knowledgable are saying that all religions are teaching the same.
    Thinking over how Christianity arose and developed, the idea of "incubator" comes to one's mind. Presently, the times of reorganizations and rebuilding, idea of "incubator" is popular. Something is developed at a small level, in "incubator", and then when it has ripened enough then it is extended further.

    Degradation of Morals in the West. With the degradation of morals in the West they, in some cases, appeared on a higher moral level than western Christians. Now some of their leaders, in an attempt to benefit from it, are beginning to lecture, teach and lure (entice) Christians to their side. People cut off from Church teachings and literature believe them, and this results in confusion in the minds of Christians. Eventually some of them enter the ranks of non-Christians.


Summary of Religions by Chapters. [20июл08]
The Lord God, the Lover of Mankind, cares for the whole world and all creatures. He supports (maintains) with His Providence everybody and everything, including pagans and unbelievers of all kinds.
    Ancient civilizations and cultures, and in general non-Christian religions are difficult to study since our society was christianized long time ago, and does not like to dig into the negative, and pays more attention to the positive side. Lord Jesus Christ, among other things, gave us a scale of values and we know precisely and understand, what is good, and what is evil. Even if we do not adhere to this "code of life", we know what is correct.
    Besides this, people belonging to these religions and cults have modified their teaching to make it closer to Christianity. As a result of all this, we have a poor understanding of the dark side of non-Christian religions.

    (1) Polytheism, Paganism.
Polytheism, is the belief in many gods. The word polytheism comes from the Greek words poly-many and theos-god.
    At the present time the term "Paganism" has several meanings: (1) The first, Orthodox view, all religions except the Christian, the faith in true God; (2) The second, secular view, ancient religions and cults that appeared in the West, especially after the cultural revolution of 1960's; (3) The third, atheistic and russophobic views, cults that appeared in the post-Soviet space (geographic area), under the influence of atheist and russophobic propaganda which glorified Paganism and put down Christianity and Orthodoxy, and this way wanted to distract people from the Orthodox faith. Here will be considered the first, that is Paganism in the Roman Empire of 2000 years ago.
    Paganism, by Orthodox definition, was before coming of the Lord Jesus Christ in the whole world, except for Ancient Jews. It was everywhere where were people, on all continents and all islands in oceans, in various forms, but much of it was similar. This is why pagan religions are also called "natural religions" as they have developed naturally. The Christianity is considered a "supernatural religion", as it was revealed supernaturally by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.
    Since Christianity and western European civilization developed in Roman Empire environment, that is why it is better known. Here will be described paganism in Roman Empire (11), 2000 years ago, and also present Eastern Religions (12).
    (11) Paganism in Roman Empire.  Before Christianity, in the Roman Empire there was Paganism-belief in many gods. The Emperor was also considered a god. Idols represented gods, pagans prayed to them and made sacrifices, sometimes human. In the Roman Empire culture and a civilization was highly developed. There was military power, the law, the state structure, schools, philosophers etc. But, in the moral area that was another matter. There was slavery, mistreatment (abuse) of women, refined cruel tortures, human sacrifices, etc. The favorite show was an execution. All this was cleaned up and whitened by Christianity. Changes did not occur immediately, but gradually. The Pagan influence still remains in some countries to this day.
    Pagans are our ancestors and forefathers. Christianity took much from Paganism, but obviously with adjustments. In many Pagan concepts one can see the archetype (precedent) of Christian understanding.
    In comparison with man-loving Christianity, Paganism was crude, proud, cruel and without mercy.
    (12) Eastern Religions.  Among pagan religions, those of East Asia were especially different. They are very ancient, and did not self destruct, as many other Pagan civilizations. This suggests, that in them there is a lot of positive that resists destructive processes.
    The Lord God, the Lover of Mankind and of all peoples, also did not leave without His Providence, love and care peoples on the Asian continent. According to His Providence there appeared people like Buddha (563-483 BC, V cen.) and Confucius (551-479 BC, V cen.) who came up with their own postulates which directed their society until our times.
    (121) Hinduism.  Hinduism is the most ancient world pagan religion. It appeared on the Indian peninsula 1500 years BC. The third in size after Christianity and Islam. It has many branches (directions), and it does not have one concrete teaching and leadership.
    Hindus believe in the reincarnation of a soul after death, into the bodies of animals, people or gods, and a constant cycle of rebirth, life, death and again birth in a different body. They also believe in karma, according to which the destiny and quality of life of a man is a reward or punishment for a former life.
    Yoga is practiced with different ways of perfecting oneself [*]. They pray in temples and at home before idols. They have many rituals for every situation in life. They go on pilgrimages. They have monks, respected by everybody. The society is divided into four castes, in which they and their descendants remain all their life. There is a group of untouchables, they are outside of any caste. Hindus are vegetarians. The cow is considered sacred and the law forbids killing her. Mahatma Gandhi was a famous leader of the Indian emancipation movement from British colonists.
    [* Hindus perfection od oneself is not always the same as Christian or Orthodox].
    (122) Buddhism.  The Founder of Buddhism was Buddha (the enlightened one), lived in India in the V century BC. It is widespread in many countries of the East. The son of a king who grew up in a palace. When he met with cruel reality, he concluded, that real life is associated with suffering and grief. He left the palace and at the age of 35 and after meditation achieved enlightenment. The remaining 45 years he travelled and taught his followers and students. In the following 400 years his followers formed many different teachings. Buddhism does not believe in God, but believes in reincarnation and karma. In its center it has a teaching about "four noble truths" and "eight noble ways". Buddhism contains many specific rules which must be followed. Buddhism aspires to peace, silence and serenity (calmness).
    (123) Confucianism.  The founder was Confucius (551-479 BC). Ancient Chinese moral, social, political, philosophical and semi-religious world outlook. Had strong influence on Chinese culture and history in East Asia. The basic virtues are respect for relatives, the dead and the living.

    (2) Monotheism.  Monotheism is the belief in one God. The word monotheism is derived from the Greek words mono-one and theos-god.
    Three religions fall into this category: Christianity, Islam (Moslems) and Judaism (Jewish). The religion of ancient Jews was the forerunner of the Christian religion.
    As it was said earlier, the Lord God, Lover of Mankind, concerns Himself with the whole world and all creatures. He supports with His Providence everyone and everything, believers and nonbelievers, and also pagans of all types.
    (21)  Ancient Jews.  The faith of the ancient Jews was radically different from all the others, but it applied only to them and did not relate to other peoples. This was a belief in one God, Creator of the entire world, it had prayer and fast, the teaching about how to live, had an understanding of sin and virtue, had an understanding of righteousness, had holy people, prophets, sacred writings, clergymen, churches etc.
    King David's psalms, from the Old Testament, to this day, after a few thousand years are in use in the Orthodox Church and are favorite readings of Orthodox people. The Proverbs of Solomon (in Russian Parables) became part of the proverbs of many peoples in the world. All this indicates that this faith was not the result of the human mind, but from a Higher Power, the Lord God Himself.
    In sacred scriptures there were many predictions about Messiah, who will come and save the Jews. Lord Jesus Christ started His teaching among Jews. He was based His teaching on Old Testament of the Bible, which He deepened and enlarged. One group of Jews acknowledged Him for Messiah, followed Him and became Christians. The other, larger one, thought that He was a dangerous rebel rouser and sorcerer, and took a different path. Present Jews are their descendants.
    (22) Christianity.  Christianity differs from other religions since it was given by the Lord God Himself. It was revealed by God and it is the religion of love for people. The preparation for Christianity was the faith of the ancient Jews. Lord Jesus Christ deepened their teaching and taught to understand the Old Testament Commandments more deeply. All His teaching is contained in the Gospel. His basic commandment is to love God and every human being. Jewish clergy could not accept Christ and consequently He was crucified and died on the cross. In three (3) days He resurrected, and after forty (40) rose into heaven. His teaching was continued by the apostles and the emerging Church, and christianization of the whole world.
    (221) Orthodoxy.  The Orthodox Christian Church has her beginning from the sermon of Christ, and then from the apostles. It has apostolic succession. She keeps all the teachings without any changes. The head of the Church is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. It consists of approximately 15 local independent Churches. The head of each Church is a Patriarch, with a few (several) exceptions. In the local Churches the local language is used. In 1054, the local Roman Catholic Church separated and went its own separate way.
    (222) Catholicism.  The Roman Catholic Church separated from Orthodoxy in 1054, after the VII Ecumenical Council in 787. (They claim, that the Orthodox Church separated and call it Eastern Schism). Since that time they independently assembled councils, without the participation of Orthodox Churches. All their decisions are not recognized by Orthodox Churches. The last council, XXI Ecumenical Council, is known as Vatican II. In each council changes in teaching and operation of the Church are made. They reduced and simplified the divine services. They are afflicted with pride (arrogance), domination, xenophobia, aggression etc., and thus infected the whole West. During the whole Russian history they have tried to take over Russian lands.
    It is very important to understand the Catholic Church, since this opens the eyes on the whole Western world.
    (223) Protestantism.  Protestantism is simplified Christianity. It has less sanctity. Divine service consists of a long sermon and several prayers. In the church people sit. They recognize only the Bible. Do not revere (honor) Holy Virgin Mary, they have no saints, icons, lent, confessions, communion, etc. They maintain that a person is saved only by faith, not by good deeds. They consider themselves Christians, but not the Orthodox and Catholics.
    (224) Sectarianism.;  Sectarians are Christian or semi-Christian societies which separated from Catholics, Protestants or Orthodox, or were organized (begun) by someone, regardless (irrespective) of any other religion. In other words, these groups-churches either have lost touch with the historical Church, or they never had it. They changed at their own discretion and distorted many of her teachings, so that they are hard to recognize any more. Many of them believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, but in their own way.
    (23) Mohammedanism, Islam.  Mohammedanism or Islam is a monotheistic religion, together with Christianity and Judaism. It arose in the beginning of the VII century in Arabian countries. The founder was the prophet Mohammed, later was governor of a city-state. He was born and lived in the city of Mecca. The sacred book is the Koran (Qur'an). It is a mix of Christianity, Judaism and Paganism. They believe in one God-Allah, life after death, recommended abstention in food, prayer, good deeds, forbids the use of alcohol and pork, has lent, polygamy.
    (24) Judaism.  Jews are those who did not believe in Christ and went their separate way. They continue to believe to be God's chosen people, consider Christ a dangerous rebel and a magician, and are still expecting the coming of the Messiah. They do not recognize the New Testament, apostles, saints, Christian Church and in general all of Christianity.

    (3) Unbelief (Disbelief).  In this chapter there are groups which are not religions, but ideologies. They are hostile and fight (struggle) against Christianity, but are tolerant to other faiths. They are: Secularism and Atheism.
    Strictly speaking, some religions also do not believe in God, like Buddhism (122) and Confucianism (123), but they are placed all together in the chapter on Eastern religions (12). They do not have a specific teaching and many of them vary and adapt to local circumstances, in particular to Christianity.
    (31) Secularism.  Secularism is a post-Christian godless culture. It appeared in the West, because of the abuses by Roman Catholic Church and representation of God as an dictator. This led many people to discontent and in 1517 Luther begins the Reformation movement, creation of the Protestant Church. After this, appeared writers, philosophers, scientists who with their works promoted disbelief: Darwin, Marx, Nietzsche, Freud, etc. Disbelief gradually spread and gained in strength. It changed (passed) into Secularism, and then into Atheism, in the different countries differently. In Russia atheists seized power in 1917 and held it until 1991. Now Atheism was replaced by Secularism, which was similar to it. In 1960 in USA there was a cultural revolution which gave a large push to secularization of the country, and then the whole world.
    (32) Atheism.  Atheists do not believe in God, but only in what they can see with their own eyes. Such approach is extremely shallow, since there are many incomprehensible (beyond understanding) things in the world. For instance nobody can explain the most common telepathy at a great distance. The same can be said about premonition.
    In the beginning of the last century (XX) revolutionary atheists seized power in Russia and tried to put into practice by force their far-fetched, unproven theories. After 70 years, they and their children died off, and their grandchildren did not want to continue the cause, and many returned to God and the Church.

    (4) Cults (Cults).  There is no exact definition of Protestants, Sectarians and Cults. Approximately one can say that Protestants are the groups that separated from the Roman Catholic Church. They believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, recognize the Symbol of Faith (Creed) and the Bible. Sectarians move further away than the Protestants. Often they have their own Bible etc. Cults, most often do not recognize Christ and if they do recognize, then their vision differs very much from the Orthodox.
    (41) New Age.  New Age is the best known occult [*] cult of our time. In short, these are people who lost their Christian spiritual reference points and are coming back to Paganism. It arose in the West, during the 1960's cultural revolution. It rejects Christianity. Is a mix of many different cults. Basically it is Indian, Buddhist, occult, pagan, theosophy, astrology, magic and other teachings. Does not have one specified teaching and consists of many orientations. Participants of this movement have worked their way into schools, colleges, universities, mass-media and are trying to reform society per their vision.
    [ * Occult, this is a relationship with dark forces, which are not of God. Christian Churches consider them harmful and affect people badly. It is known that, under their influence, the personality of people gets damaged. They become arrogant, conceited (overly self-confident), christophobes (Christ haters), mean, haters etc. Then it is very difficult for them to recover].
    (42) Some Cults.  Because of the decline of spirituality in the West and militant atheism in the East, the whole world is experiencing a spiritual crisis. A consequence of this crisis, is the appearance of many cults in the West. With the fall of atheism in the East and freedom of worship, from the West came a wave of various religions, sects and cults, including forbidden ones in the West. In the post-Soviet territory many people have fallen under their influence. Orthodoxy is reviving, gaining strength and is wrestling with this flood of deception (delusion, illusion, deceit). There is already a lot of printed literature and also on the Internet. There are many cults. In this section only few are mentioned.

1 – POLYTHEISM, PAGANISM. [08июл08]
The Polytheism, is belief in many gods. The word polytheism comes from Greek word poly-many and theos-god.
    At present time the term "Paganism" has several meanings: (1) The first, Orthodox view, all religions except the Christian, the faith in true God; (2) The second, secular view, ancient religions and cults that appeared in the West, especially after the cultural revolution of 1960th; (3) The third, atheistic and russophobic views, cults that appeared in the post-Soviet space, under the influence of atheist and russophobic propaganda which glorified Paganism and put down Christianity and Orthodoxy, and this way wanted to distract people from Orthodox faith. Here will be considered the first, that is Paganism in Roman Empire 2000 years ago.
    Paganism, by Orthodox definition, was before coming of the Lord Jesus Christ in the whole world, except for Ancient Jews. It was everywhere where were people, on all continents and all islands in oceans, in various forms, but much of it was similar. This is why pagan religions are also called "natural religions" as they have developed naturally. The Christianity is considered a "supernatural religion", as it was revealed supernaturally by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.
    Since Christianity and western European civilization developed in Roman Empire environment, that is why it is better known. Here will be described paganism in Roman Empire (11), 2000 years ago, and also present Eastern Religions (12).

11. Язычество (Paganism) [18июн08]
Резюме. Before Christianity, in Roman Empire there was Paganism (Heathenism), belief in many gods. The Emperor was also considered a god. Idols represented gods, pagans prayed to them and made sacrifices, sometimes human. In Roman Empire there was a high culture and a civilization. There was a military power, the law, the state structure, schools, philosophers etc. But, in moral area that was another matter. There was slavery, mistreatment (abuse) of women, refined cruel tortures, human sacrifices etc. The favorite show was a death penalty. All this was cleaned up and whitewashed by Christianity. Changes did not occur immediately, but gradually. The Pagan influence still remains in some countries.
    Pagans (heathens) are our ancestors and forefathers. The Christianity took a lot from Paganism, but obviously with adjustments. In many Pagan concepts one can see the archetype (precedent) of Christian understanding.
    In comparison with man-loving Christianity, Paganism was crude, proud, cruel and without mercy.


11.1 History. Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ coincided on one hand with bloom of Roman Empire, when it captured Europe, Africa and western Asia. On the other hand with its internal and spiritual crisis.
    In those days it was noticed the existence of "closed cycles in history" (ДД-06.13-25), that during the whole history of mankind appeared civilizations which grow, develop, ripen and eventually perish and disappear. Most often, this destruction happens because of internal contradictions. This kind of end was also approaching the pagan civilization of Roman Empire. And if the cure (remedy) would not be brought by Christianity, the Roman civilization most likely would be lost [*]. But Сhristianity radically changed Paganism and has rescued (saved) European (western) civilization from destruction. Thus the mankind exists already 2000 with Christian "code" of a life.
    [* Христианство спасло человечество от гибели. (Christianity has rescued (saved) mankind from destruction) (ДД-06.13)].

11.2 Pagan religion. Romans had a whole hierarchy of gods, from the most important Jupiter (Zeus in Greece), up to the smallest. Gods had human qualities. They had families, spouses and children and they lived on mountain Olympus. Here some of them (Greek name follows in brackets): Jupiter (Zeus) the Supreme god, Minerva (Athens) goddess of wisdom, Apollo (Apollo) god of light, Diana (Artemis) the goddess of hunting and a crop, Mars (Ares) god of war, Mercury (Hermes) god of trade, Neptune (Poseidon) protector of horse breeding, Saturn (Chronos) the god of agriculture, Venus (Aphrodite) goddess of love. Besides these gods, emperors were also proclaimed gods.
    There were pagan temples where were idols of these gods who were glorified, prayed to and made sacrifices. In many respects, the pagan faith was preparation for Christianity. They already had a prayer, holy days, belief in afterlife, etc. Roman pagan gods were heroes of many literary works: they had legal proceedings, argued, helped or harmed people.
    Since Rome was the center of the state, there were gatherings from all ends of empire. All of them prayed to various gods and idols. This fact undermined pagan faith, since one could see huge number and variety of gods.

11.3 Teaching. Pagan religions did not have teachings, but they had pagan priests. Religions consisted of prayers, sacrifices, holidays and festivals etc.

11.4 Sacred books. Pagan religions did not have sacred books.

11.5 Pagan life. The culture and civilization were on a high level. There was well organized army, state structure, rights, law, schools, teachers, philosophers etc, but in the area of morality the things were different.
    Pagan world was gloomy, the life was harsh and difficult. It was dominated by cruelty, force, riches, pride, moral decadence. Life and the people were cruel and ruthless. The people had fun by looking how people were killing each other. Death sentence was a popular show. The punishments were severe. The people were crucified, tormented, thorn apart, burned, tortured etc. During the war people were especially harsh to each other. The victors exterminated the peaceful population and maimed prisoners. There was slavery. The slave could be purchased, sold or even killed. The person could become indebted or be taken into captivity and then became a slave. In many religions existed sacrifices, even human, moral decadence and immorality. Evidence to this can be found in the Bible and in the life of saints.

Conclusion. Pagans are our ancestors and forefathers. Christianity took many things from paganism, but certainly with corrections. In many pagan concepts the prototype of Christian understanding is visible. By God's Providence, paganism has paved the way for acceptance of Christianity.
    In comparison with people loving Christianity, paganism was rough, proud and cruel.

• Благотворное влияние христианства: (ДД-06)
• Благотворное влияние христианства. Примечания: (ДД-06.12)
• Христианство спасло человечество от гибели (ДД-06.13)
• История Христианской Церкви. Обзор (ДД-13)
• Введение в Историю Христианской Церкви. Краткий обзор(ДД-13.3)
• Истоки разницы между Западной и Русской Церквами. Русское Православие: (ДД-13.7)
• Античное христианство: http://christianity.shu.ru/


12. Eastern Religions. [19июня08]
Among pagan religions, religions of eastern Asia especially stand out. They are very ancient and did not selfdestruct, as many other pagan civilizations. This suggests, that they have a lot of positive elements which resist destructive processes.
    It appears that, the Lord God, Lover of Men, of all people did not leave without His Providence, love and care also people on Asian continent. According to His Providence appeared people as Buddha (546-324 before BC) and Confucius (551-479 before BC) who worked out their postulates which were guiding their society until our times.
    It is difficult to study ancient civilizations and cultures, since our society was christianized long time ago, and does not like to dig into the negative, and pays more attention on positive. Lord Jesus Christ, among other things, gave us a scale of values and we exactly know and understand, what is good, and what is evil. Even if we ourselves do not adhere to this "code of life", we still know what is correct. Many atheists are closer to Christianity in their outlook, than to paganism. This is where the term "orthodox atheist" originates. Besides this, those who belong to these religions and cults have modified their teaching to be closer to Christian. As a result of all this, we have very bad understanding about the dark side of paganism.
    Example of this are the thieves and other negative persons who are trying to raise their children correctly and are enrolling them into special schools.


121. Hinduism. [19июня08]
Summary. Hinduism is the most ancient world pagan religion. It appeared on Indian peninsula 1500 before BC. The third in size after Christianity and Islam. It has many branches (directions), and it does not have one concrete teaching and leadership.
    Hindus believe in reincarnation of a soul after the death, into bodies of animals, people or gods, and a constant cycle of rebirth, life, death and again birth in a different body. They also believe in karma, according to which the destiny and quality of life of a man is an award or punishment for former life.
    The yoga is practiced with different ways of perfecting oneself [*]. They praying temples and at home before idols. They have a large amount There have many rituals for every situation in life. They go on pilgrimage. They have monks, respected by everybody. The society is divided into four castes, in which they and their descendants remain all their life. There is a group of untouchables, they are outside of any caste. Hindus are vegetarians. The cow is considered sacred and the law forbids to kill her. Mahatma Gandhi is famous leader of Indian emancipation movement from British colonists.


Note. All words concerning religion have Hindu and not Christian meaning. For example: god, prayer, temple, soul, spiritual perfection, spiritual action, comprehension of the god, purification etc.

121.1 Beginning of Hinduism. Hinduism is the most ancient pagan world religion, which arose on Indian Peninsula about 1500 years before BC. The founder is unknown. In Hinduism there are several directions, besides this it unites various beliefs and traditions.

121.2 Number of Followers.  Hinduism is third religion by size in the world after Christianity and Mohammedanism (Islam). Totals more than 1 billion followers from whom the majority, nearby 950 million, live in India and Nepal. Other countries in which Hindus make a significant part of the population, is Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Mauritius, Fiji, Suriname, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, and recently the United Kingdom, Canada and the USA(USA).
    Number of adherents of various religions: http://www.adherents.com/


121.3 Sacred Books. In Hinduism there are many sacred books which were written during several thousand years. The most known is Vedas and Upanishads.

121.4 Beliefs.  Present Hinduism preceded Brahmanism, and it was preceded by Vedic religion. In all three religions Hindus pray basically to same gods. Hinduism developed gradually and absorbed in itself different religious, cultural, social both political trends and changes. Thus, Hinduism is very diversified religion.
    In spite of the fact that there are basic beliefs which all Hindus share, it is difficult to formulate the common teaching which could be accepted by all Hindu directions. Following concepts, are accepted by most of Hindus: (1) Dharma – moral duty; (2) Samsa-ra) – reincarnation of souls, after death, in bodies of animals, people, gods and a constant cycle of birth, life, death and again reincarnation; (3) Karma – destiny and quality of human life is the award or punishment for the previous life; (4) Moksha – liberation from reincarnation, rebirth and death; (5) Yoga – various ways (methods) of perfecting oneself.
    Hinduism is a combination of various philosophical systems and beliefs. Basically they are pagans and believe in many gods. Contact with Christianity influenced Hinduism and it was modified. Besides this Hinduism which is practised by Hindus living among Christians considerably differs from those living in India and other countries where they are the majority.

121.5 Soul (Atman). The majority of Hindus believe, that soul is eternal and the basic essence of each person.

121.6 Yoga. The one who is engaged in yoga, yogas name. Various kinds of yoga are described in books: "Бхагавад-гита", "Yoga-сутры", "Хатха-yoga-прадипика", and also Упанишады.
    There are several kinds of yoga for achievement of different types of perfection (moksha, samadhi, nirvana): (1) Bhakti Yoga – a way of love and fidelity to the God; (2) Karma Yoga – a way of correct deeds; (3) Ra-ja Yoga – a way of meditation; (4) Гьяна-yoga (Jсa-na Yoga) – a way of wisdom. A person can follow one of these ways or several, depending on his or her preferences and understanding.

121.7 Religious life. Hinduism of the religious life is basically directed on comprehension of god or receiving the blessing. Therefore, in Hinduism there are ways which help person to think of god in daily life.

121.8 Idols (murti).  Hindus make prayer (puja) in a temple and at home, before a house altar with an idol (murti). Everyone Hindu temple is usually devoted to some god in the form of murti and to several minor gods.

121.9 Visiting temples is not obligatory. Many Hindus are coming to a temple only during religious holidays.

121.10 Ceremonies, rituals. Most Hindus participate in religious rituals daily. Many Hindus also perform religious rituals at home.
    Religious rituals include cleansing (purification) during the ritual or after. Cleansing is usually done by water and is a part of most religious rituals.
    On the In case of events like birth of a child, wedding or a funeral, a whole series of complex religious rituals are performed. In a majority of Hindu families, an exact times of carrying out various ceremonies, in particular such as engagement of a young couple, wedding, etc., is determined after consultation with Vedic astrologist. Obligatory ceremony for everybody, with some exceptions, is cremation of a body after death. In a traditional Hindu ritual of cremation, a body is wrapped into a fabric and burned on a funeral fire.

121.11 Pilgrimage and holidays. Pilgrimages are characteristic to Hinduism. A sacred place of pilgrimage is referred to with term "дхама".

121.12 Monasticism. Some Hindus choose a monastic way of life "санньясу" with the purpose of concentrating on achieving of liberation or some other form of spiritual perfection. Monks devote themselves to a simple and ascetic life, give a vow of chastity and stopping any material activity, completely concentrate on spiritual actions, whose purpose is comprehension of god.
    Monks in Hinduism are called "санньяси", "садху" or "свами". Women-nuns name are called "санньясини". Monks use huge respect in Hindu society. They live in monasteries, or travel, relying only on god for maintenance of bodily needs. To feed travelling "садху" or to render him any kind of help, is considered a very pious act, and for family people it is also a duty. "Садху" aspire to treat everybody with respect and compassion, irrespective of, whether the person is rich or poor is, villain or virtuous. Distinctive feature of "садху" is also a relative freedom from a duality of a material world: as a rule they are indifferent to praises or criticism, suffering or pleasure.

121.13 Caste System. In Hinduism, the society is divided into four castes (varna): (1) Brahmins – teachers and priests; (2) Kshatriyas – soldiers, noblemen and kings; (3) Vaishyas – farmers, dealers and businessmen; (4) Shudras – servants and workers. "Untouchables" are a separate group of poorest and most unfortunate. They are "invisible" and are not even considered a caste. It is impossible to communicate with them and it is impossible to touch them.
    The caste, determines a place of a person in Hindu society, his position, rights, behavior, even his external looks, including clothes and signs on a forehead or jewelry which he carries. The caste in many respects determines also ritual duties of the individual, his religious duties. The higher is the caste, the more attention, at least theoretically, according to accepted norms, the person is obliged to perform daily ceremonies at the house altar, to necessary bows, "воскурениям", "подношениям", mantras etc. For infringements of caste rules follow strict punishments and painful ceremonies of "cleansung" of the guilty.
    Castes, is the term applied to basic division of Hindu society. It is also used for designation of any social group, adhering to rigid norms of group behavior and not allowing strangers into their group.
    Main characteristics of hindu castes: (1) performing marriages exclusively between members of a caste; (2) hereditary membership (accompanied by impossibility to pass into other caste); (3) prohibition to share a meal with representatives of other castes, and also to have with them physical contact; (4) recognition of firmly fixed place of each caste in hierarchical structure of a society; (5) restrictions on selection of a trade; (6) autonomy of castes in regulation of internal social relations.
    Индия. Семья и каста

121.14 Ahmisa and vegetarianism. Hindus follow a principle of "ахимсы" (nonviolence) and respect life in all its manifestation. They believe that all alive beings by their nature are spiritual and are particles or sparks of God.
    Out of respect for other alive beings, many Hindus adhere to a vegetarian diet. Vegetarianism is one of prominent aspects of Hinduism, it is considered as one of means of achievement "саттвического" (pure, kind) way of life.
    Most orthodox Hindus also do not use onions and garlic which are considered as products related to the lowest qualities of food.
    The cow always personified a figure of mother figure in Hindus society. Hindus esteem the cow as personification of unselfish sacrifice. Murder of cows is forbidden by the law practically in all states of India.

121.15 Mahatma Gandhi. The leader of liberation (emancipation) movement in India from British, which successfully ended in 1948. His philosophy of a nonviolence (non-violent resistance) (сатьяграха – Satyagraha) has influenced national and international movements of supporters of peaceful changes. For example, in America, in 1960th Martin Luther King successfully used it in struggle for rights of black Americans (afroamericans). In 1982 Holywood filmed well known picture "Gandhi".

Conclusion. Hindu religion is the most ancient faith. It did not selfdestruct like many other pagan religions. This can be explained by the fact that, although it is not comparable with monotheistic and Man Loving Christianity, and it has a caste of untouchables, but in it there is no violence, aggression, anger, cruelty etc. Though earlier, in some branches there were human sacrifices.
    Besides this, the system of casts, probably helped inner fusing of the country, and it was very difficult to make any changes.
    Occupation by Britain was humiliation of the most ancient culture, but it was also a contact with Christianity, which washed up and cleansed Hindu religion, and with it both life and culture.
    Presently, Hindus use the decline of Christianity in the West and secularism to actively conduct propaganda of Hinduism in many western countries of the world. Their Hinduism is modified to resemble Christian teaching, and people who lost the Christian identity are easily caught up in it.

    • Википедия: http://ru.wikipedia.org/
    • Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/
    • Энциклопедия Кругосвет: http://www.krugosvet.ru/
    • Мировые религии: http://schools.keldysh.ru/
    • Религии и секты: http://apologet.narod.ru
    • Свято-Троицкая Православная Школа (еп.Александр (Милеант): http://www.holytrinitymission.org/
    • История религии: http://religion.babr.ru/
    • Православная беседа: http://drevo.pravbeseda.ru/


122. Buddhism. [22июн08]
Summary. The Founder of Buddhism is Buddha (the enlightened one), lived in India in VII century before BC. It is widespread in many countries of the East. The son of king has grown in a palace. When met with cruel reality concluded, that the real life is connected with suffering and grief. He left a palace and at 35 years of age and after meditation achieved enlightenment. Other 45 years he was travelling and teaching his followers and students. In the following of 400 years his followers formed many different teachings. The Buddhism does believe in God, but believes in reincarnation and karma. In the center it has a teaching about "four noble truths" and "eight noble ways". The Buddhism contains many concrete rules on which is necessary to follow. Buddhism aspires to peace, silence and serenity (calmness).

122.1 History. After appearance of Buddhism it spread to many countries of the East.
    In time Buddhism split into two basic branches: liberal (the Mahajana - big chariot, or a wide way of salvation) and conservative ("Теравада" - a way "старца" and of few). These branches so differ from each other, that they can be considered as different religions. The total number of Buddhists reaches 300 million
    The Buddhism is most widespread in Tibet, Myanma, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Mongolia, Vietnam, Korea, China and Japan.
    The Buddhism was widespread on territories of Russia from Caucasus to Sakhalin. Today it is the basic religion in Buryatiya, Tuva and Kalmyk steppe.
    The Buddhism is fourth religion by size in the world after Christianity, Islam and Hinduism and totals from 230 up to 500 million followers.
    The teaching of Buddhism is not same in all countries. In each country it has the specific features.

122.2 Founder – the Buddha. The founder was "Гаутама-Сиддхартха-Шакьямуни" (546-324 before BC), lived in India (Nepal) in VII before BC, named Buddha, which means "enlightened".
    After a life in luxury in a palace of the father, king Kapilavastu, "Сиддхарта" accidently met cruel reality, and concluded, that the real life is connected with sufferings and grief. He refused a life in a palace and began to live an ascetic life together with his forest hermits (recluse). Later he came to a conclusion, that ascetism is wrong, and that it is necessary to find a middle way between a self-satisfaction and self-restriction.
    During meditation under a tree he has made a decision to find the Truth, and at the age of 35 he achieved the Enlightenment. After that he began to be called Buddha Gautama, or simply Buddha which means "awakened".
    Remaining 45 years of a life he travelled across the Central India in a valley of Ganges, training followers and pupils. Later Buddha's followers during next 400 years formed many different teachings.

122.3 Teaching. The Buddhism does not recognize the God, but believes in reincarnation and karma. Denying existence of a personal God, the Buddhism in fact is peculiar form of atheism.
    Buddhism teaches, that peace, suffering and enjoyment, this is al visible, appearance of being. There are several directions (schools) of Buddhism.
    Giving up will, selfishness and all its consequences, the person plunges into a nirvana. This is a condition of complete peace of mind, absence of desires, ideas, into psychic nonexistence. According to Buddha' teaching the life is evil. The person should aspire to a nirvana. Blessedness is achieved by relinquishing will, ascetism, dismissal of anger and bad promptings, love for all and readiness to sacrifice of oneself for others. High morals with the social teaching followed from it promoted the spread of Buddhism.
    Buddhism teaches that there is no full death. After the death people's souls move to another person and even into animals. Buddhistic teaching about reincarnation is contradictory to Christianity.
    Four noble trues. The center of Buddhism is the teaching of Buddha about four noble trues. They are noble because make the person noble: (1) suffering is eral real; (2) suffering result of selfish desires; (3) suffering stops when selfish wishes are eliminated; (4) suffering stops when one follows "Eight Noble Ways".
    Eight Nobble Ways. Eight Nobble Ways are the ways of stopping the suffering:

  1. Correct understanding – have outlook and wisdom according to the Truthes.
  2. Correct thinking – think without egotism, anger and cruelty.
  3. Correct speech – speak truth, do not gossip and slander, do not be rude and do not engage in empty talk.
  4. Correct actions – do not kill and hurt people or animals, do not steal directly or indirectly, do not engage in pleasure if it hurts others.
  5. Correct means of subsistence – have honest and noble profession.
  6. Correct action – promote growth of favorable, and reduction of unfavorable.
  7. Correct understanding – understanding of what is happening here-and-now.
  8. Correct concentration – pay attention and concentrate on nobble or be in the state of here-and-now.
122.4 Sacred books. There are books in Chinese and Sanskrit, and sayings of Patriarchs.

122.5 Faith and Life. In general Buddhism consists in following rules.

122.6 Influence of Buddhism. Buddhism affected in a quite positive way people and society, giving them concrete rules for a life.

Conclusion.
    Lord God Lover of all humanity, did not leave without His Providence, love and care people on Asian Continent. According to His Providence appeared Buddha who worked out his postulates, which guided their society until now.
    Buddhism is striving (seeks) peace, silence and tranquility (calmness) and achieves it with physical exercises. There is not a word about conscience, sin, virtue, repenting, confession etc. Obviously Buddhism is better than cruel paganism of Roman Empire, but it is incomparable with men loving Christianity, and depth and spiritual riches of Orthodoxy, especially Russian Orthodoxy (ДД-13.7).
    With the loss of spiritual guideposts and loss of agreement in values in the West and in the East, Buddhism in some circles is becoming popular. But, in our time, time of multitude of problems, religion conceived (devised, invented) by one man cannot satisfy needs of a modern man, who lost his spiritual and religious guideposts.

    • Истоки разницы между Западной и Русской Церквами. Русское Православие: (ДД-13.7)
    • Википедия: http://ru.wikipedia.org/
    • Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/
    • Энциклопедия Кругосвет: http://www.krugosvet.ru/
    • Мировые религии: http://schools.keldysh.ru/ *
    • Религии и секты: http://apologet.narod.ru Много файлов, которые нужно загружать
    • Свято-Троицкая Православная Школа (еп.Александр (Милеант): http://www.holytrinitymission.org/
    • История религии: http://religion.babr.ru/
    • Православная беседа: http://drevo.pravbeseda.ru/


123. Конфуционизм (Confucianism) [22июн08]
Summary. Founder was Confucius (551-479 before BC). Ancient Chinese moral, social, political, philosophical and semi-religious outlook. Had the big influence on Chinese culture and history in East Asia. The basic virtues are respect for relatives, dead and alive.

123.1 History. Ancient Chinese moral, social, political, philosophical and semi-religious outlook. Had the big influence on Chinese culture and history in East Asia. The basic virtues are respect for relatives, dead and alive. Slowly became a religion.

123.2 Founder. Founder was Confusius (Кун-цзы) (551-479 before BC) was a descendant of a famous family. In youth served as a clerk. This was the time of the decline of "Чжоу" Empire. The power of emperor diminished, patriarchal society was collapsing and in their place came heads of separate kingdoms. Collapse (downfall) of ancient foundations of a family-clan life, conflicts – all this caused the sharp criticism.
    Realizing the impossibility to effect government politics, Confucius went to travel across China followed by disciples. At the age of nearly 60 he came back home and spent the rest of his life teaching his disciples, and also systemizing former literary heritage.

123.3 Teaching. In society there is law "жень", sent by heaven. In order to follow this law man has to observe norms of social behavior, traditional ritual, act in concert with his place in a society.
    The basic content of the cult, formed before Confucianism), is the honoring (worship) of ancestors. Every family and clan have their temple, where are placed plates "чжу" symbolizing ancestors, and in front of which are placed sacrifices and performed rituals.
    With the change of Confucianism into a religion, Confucius was deificated. Confucianism differs from many religions by not having priests, mystic elements and consists of strict following of prescribed rituals.
    Confucianism does not have a Church. It places little meaning to theological question. Confucianism's ideal is creation of harmonious society according to ancient model (pattern), in which every person had its function. Harmonious society built on idea of loyalty between the manager and subordinate, directed towards preservation of the society.

123.4 Sacred Books. Confucianism's source is "Лунь-юй" ("Discussions and Judgements"), written by Confucius disciples from teacher's sayings and talks (VI before BC). It became especially respected Confucianism's book.

123.5 Faith and Life. Action of the faith in life consists of following principles of Confucianism and various rituals.

123.6 Influence of Confucianism. Confucianism affected in a positive way people and society. In our times, Chinese families in the West, are known for their strong families.

Conclusion. Lord God Lover of all humanity, did not leave without His Providence, love and care also people on Asian Continent. According to His Providence appeared Confucius who worked out his postulates, which guided their society until now.

    Некролог епископа Александра (Милеант): (ДД-72)
    Википедия: http://ru.wikipedia.org/
    Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/
    Энциклопедия Кругосвет: http://www.krugosvet.ru/
    Мировые религии: http://schools.keldysh.ru/
    Религии и секты: http://apologet.narod.ru
    + Епископ Александр (Милеант): http://www.fatheralexander.org/
    Свято-Троицкая Православная Школа [+ еп.Александр (Милеант)]: http://www.holytrinitymission.org/
    История религии: http://religion.babr.ru/
    Православная беседа: http://drevo.pravbeseda.ru/


2 – MONOTHEISM. [20июл08]
Monotheism is the belief in one God. The word monotheism is derived from the Greek words mono-one and theos-god.
    Three religions fall into this category: Christianity, Islam (Moslems) and Judaism (Jewish). The religion of ancient Jews was the forerunner of the Christian religion.
    As it was said earlier, the Lord God, Lover of Mankind, concerns Himself with the whole world and all creatures. He supports with His Providence everyone and everything, believers and nonbelievers, and also pagans of all types.


21. Ancient Jews. [21июл08]
Summary. The faith of the ancient Jews was radically different from all the others, but it applied only to them and did not relate to other peoples. This was a belief in one God, Creator of the entire world, it had prayer and fast, the teaching about how to live, had an understanding of sin and virtue, had an understanding of righteousness, had holy people, prophets, sacred writings, clergymen, churches etc.
    King David's psalms, from the Old Testament, to this day, after a few thousand years are in use in the Orthodox Church and are favorite readings of Orthodox people. The Proverbs of Solomon (in Russian Parables) became part of the proverbs of many peoples in the world. All this indicates that this faith was not the result of the human mind, but from a Higher Power, the Lord God Himself.
    In sacred scriptures there were many predictions about Messiah, who will come and save the Jews. Lord Jesus Christ started His teaching among Jews. He was based His teaching on Old Testament of the Bible, which He deepened and enlarged. One group of Jews acknowledged Him for Messiah, followed Him and became Christians. The other, larger one, thought that He was a dangerous rebel rouser and sorcerer, and took a different path. Present Jews are their descendants.


21.1 History. The initial faith was a faith in one true God, creator of the world. When people scattered throughout the world they, quickly forgot about Him. They began to make up gods and started to worship the sun, moon, stars, various animals, began to make idols and worship them and bring offerings. People became idol worshippers.
    At that time, before BC, only Jews had true faith, in God the Creator of the world and were awaiting Messiah the savior. History of the Ancient Jews is described in textbooks of the Old Testament of God's Law (ДД-55.3р). It ends with the arrival of Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ. Here, Jews split in two groups. Smaller accepts Him as Messiah, follows Him, becomes Christian and joins His Church. One can learn about them in Chapter (22) Christianity.
    Larger group did not accept Christ as Messiah. They saw Him as a dangerous rebel rouser and sorcerer, and went in different path. Their descendants are present day Jews. One can learn about them in Chapter (24) Judaism.

21.2 Prophets. The ancient Jews had prophets. These were people who led a holy life and, by inspiration from God, foretold the future, declared God's will, taught the people faith and piety, and performed various signs and miracles. The more famous ones were: Elijah, Elias, Jonah, Isaiah and Daniel.

21.3 Teaching. The teaching of the ancient Jews was radically different from their pagan neighbors. This was the faith in one God, Creator of entire world, a personal God, there was prayer and fast, there was teaching as to how to live, there were Commandments, an understanding of sin and virtue, an understanding of righteousness; there were holy people, prophets, sacred writings, clergymen, temples, etc. All this was saying that their faith was not "natural", but God revealed.

21.4 Sacred writings. Sacred writings of Ancient Jews were present Old Testament books in Holy Scriptures (Bible). Ten Commandments and other laws were given to Moses by the Lord God, which recorded in five (5) books. This is how the first books of Holy Scriptures appeared. Most famous parts of the Bible are Psalms of King David (Псалтырь) and Proverbs of King Solomon (in Russian Parables). They all became part of Christian Bible.
    Psalms of King David, still, after several thousand years, are used by Orthodox Church. They are often read and sung in the Church during Divine Service. Psalms 102 and 145 are sung during The Liturgy. Many Christian prayers are made up from verses from psalms. Book of Psalms (Псалтырь) is the best book of Old Testament and is a favorite reading of many Christians.
    Proverbs of King Solomon became part of proverbs of many peoples. All this says that this faith is not a product of human mind, but from a Higher Power, the Lord God Himself.
    On Night Vigil (evening divine service) much is read from the Old Testament, and also psalms from the Book of Psalms.

21.5 Prophecies about the Savior. The Old Testament contains many prophecies. The prophet Isaiah wrote a book in which he predicted about Christ the Savior, that He would be born of a Virgin, would perform many miracles and would suffer for the sins of the people. He is called the Old Testament Evangelist.
    Among the other prophets, Micah foretold that Christ would be born in Bethlehem. Daniel foretold that the Savior would come to earth seventy times seven years (70x7=490), after the Jews returned from the Babylonian captivity. Joel foretold that the Holy Spirit would descend on the apostles and the faithful.
    In the Gospel according to St.Matthew it says, that "He shall save His people from their sins" (Matthew 1:21) (bold by DD). Jesus Christ based His sermon on the Old Testament teaching, which He clarified, deepened and widened. Sin is not only literal understanding of a commandment, but also its spirit. That means that any action, word or thought which leads to a sin, is also a sin (Matthew 5:27-28). Love towards neighbor (people) that Lord God commanded applies not only to fellow countrymen Jews, but also to all other people. This was explained in a famous Parable of Merciful (Good) Samaritan (Matthew 18:21-35; Luke 17:3-4).

Conclusion. Christianity was preceded by the faith of Ancient Jews. They were forbearers and forefathers of Christians and prepared world for receival of Christ's teaching. Our faith has its beginning from them. Orthodox Church deeply honors and respects all of them any many things were inherited form them. In the Church there are days dedicated to the memory of our forefathers.
    Thinking through how Christianity appeared in small Jewish nation, one remembers the idea of "incubators", described earlier in Introduction. Presently, when some public projects are being developed, often it is done on a small scale, and later when it is proven that it works, then it is introduced into society on a large scale. In the same way, God chosen people served as incubator for Christianity – God revealed religion (supernatural).
    The reader is reminded, that Bible is used, besides Christians, also by Jews, Moslems, secularists etc, and all of them are interpreting that ancient period in their own way

    • Закон Божий (Прот. Аполлоний Темномеров. 1907 г.) (ДД-55.3р)     • Литература (21).


22. Christianity [26июн08]
Summary. Christianity is distinguished from other religions in that it was given by the Lord God Himself. This is a God-revealed and people-loving religion. The way to Christianity was paved by the faith of the ancient Jews. Lord Jesus Christ deepened their teaching and taught to understand the Old Testament commandments more deeply. All of His teachings can be found in the Gospels. His basic commandment was to love God and every person. The Jewish clergy could not accept Christ which is why He was crucified and died on the cross. On the third day He resurrected and in forty days He rose into heaven. His teachings were carried on by the apostles, the coming into existence of the Church and the spread of Christianity throughout the whole world.

22.1 History. The history of Christianity can be divided into three periods. They overlap on their boundaries.
    First period, this is the period before Christ and is called the Old Testament. It can be found in the Holy Scriptures (Christian Bible) and also in textbooks on God's Law. This is the preparatory period to Christianity.
    Second period, this encompasses the life of Jesus Christ and also includes the Virgin Mary who was born and lived before Christ's birth. During this period He was born, grew, lived and taught the faith. This period ends with the Ascension of the Lord Jesus Christ into heaven. This period is called the New Testament. It can be found in the Holy Scriptures (Christian Bible) and also in textbooks on God's Law. This period is the basis and foundation of Christianity.
    Third period begins after the Christ's Ascension and the Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles (Pentecost) and the beginning of the apostles preaching Christianity. Then follows, persecution, imprisonment and execution of Christians, granting their freedom (in 313) by emperor Constantine the Great (later holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Constantine) and the adoption of Christianity by the emperor and all his citizens. This is a key moment in the history of Christianity since it stopped being the possession of a small group of Christians and became the distinction of all society.
    Then follows the establishing of the Christian Church based on the seven Ecumenical Councils, the rise of local Churches and the slow christianization of the whole world. This period is described and studied in the History of the Christian Church.
    In the very beginning of the Church we can see five ancient local Churches: (1) Jerusalem, (2) Antioch, (3) Alexandria, (4) Rome and (5) Constantinople. The Antiochian Church is mentioned in the Acts of the Holy Apostles (Acts 11:26).

22.2 Lord Jesus Christ. The coming of the Lord Jesus Christ was foretold in the Old Testament. He was born in Bethlehem of the holy Virgin Mary, began his ministry at the age of 30 which He preached for three years. Since His teachings were different from the teachings of the Jewish clergy with its depth and love for man, they rose up against Him, was persecuted, and was killed by crucifixion and buried in a cave. He arose on the third day and continued to teach and in forty days rose into heaven. All this is mentioned in the Creed (ДД-09).
    Jesus' life and teaching is recorded in the Gospels and in God's Law textbooks.

22.3 Teaching. Christ's teaching was based on the sacred scriptures of the ancient Jews, i.e. on the Old Testament of the Bible.
    The spiritual world is complex and some commandments are difficult to understand and might appear paradoxical. (Atheists like to talk about this). Let us say that one must love one's enemies. But they become comprehensible when a person thinks about them carefully and brings to mind the effect of sin on the sinner and other people, now, in the future and also after death.
    When He was criticized that He was teaching something different, He answered: "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil" (Matthew 5:17 KJV). Lord Jesus Christ's teaching was written down by the apostles and can be found in the Gospels and the Epistles of the Apostles. This is the original source but there is much other Church literature in which everything is explained thoroughly.
    (1) This is the belief in one God, Holy, Creator of the entire universe, Creator of everything visible and invisible, everything living and non-living, Righteous, Wise, Lover of mankind, Personal, Providential and others.
    (2) Christ taught to love God and man which is accomplished by observing the commandments.
    (3) Sin destroys but kindness creates. Christ taught not to sin. He taught to more deeply understand the Ten Commandments given to Moses, taught to observe the Commandments of Blessedness and other Gospel commandments.
    (4) After death a person does not cease to exist since his soul continues to live. Depending on how a person lived his life he goes to heaven or to hell.

22.4 Sacred Books. The basic Sacred book for Christians is the Holy Scriptures (Bible). The Bible consists of the Old and New Testament. The New Testament consists of the Gospels, Epistles of the Apostles and Revelation.
    The most basic in Christianity is love for God and man and that what Christ taught in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7, Luke 6:12-49). We are separated by 2000 years from the time that Christ taught. There were different people, languages, cultures, customs, etc. That is why it's difficult for a person from a different time to read and properly understand what is written. Because of that, the Church relies for the interpretation of the Bible on well-known holy teachers. First among them are holy John Chrysostom, Basil the Great, John the Theologian and others.
    Another book is Church Canons (Rules) – decisions of the Apostolic and seven Ecumenical Councils. All work and structure of the Church is based on these canons, but the average layman rarely deals with them.
    The third set of books is the works of the holy fathers written by the holy fathers of the Church and other Church writers. They interpret, explain and likewise defend many aspects of Christianity.
    Teaching of Lord Jesus Christ (ДД-21.4а)
    Sermon on the Mount (St. Apostle Matthew) (ДД-38.5а)
    Sermon on the Mount (Arkhiepiskop Averki) (ДД-38.6р)


22.5 Faith and Life. The relationship between faith and life is the following: home prayers; church services; observation of God's Law commandments; good deeds; observation of fasts; spiritual reading; confession etc.

22.6 Beneficial influence. Christianity had a beneficial influence on the whole world. The pagan world – in which power, riches, pride, cruelty, moral corruption (decadence) were the norm – slowly went through a rebirth under the influence of Christianity. The basic values became kindness, love, charity, modesty, forgiveness, purity of morals. Christianity influenced man's entire life, on all aspects of his complex life and cleansed everything and everyone. Christian rules and norms for life became the basic laws of all civilized countries. Christian teaching became the cradle of a new cleansed Christian culture.
    Christian teaching was the complete opposite of the customs, morals and outlooks of paganism. Christian faith changed the entire aspect of life in everything: (1) Instead of multiple gods with human traits – faith in one all powerful, man-loving and personal God; (2) Instead of egoism – it preached love; (3) In place of pride it offered humility; (4) In place of riches, which reached outrageous heights in the Roman Empire, it demanded abstention and fasting; (5) It uprooted polygamy (more than one wife); (6) Elevated the significance of slaves; (7) It called upon the rich for compassion (mercy) and charity (philanthropy).
    Before the arrival of Christianity paganism was going through a crisis. It's entirely possible that Western civilization would not be as it is today without Christianity (ДД-06.13)..

Conclusion. Christianity was given to humanity by the Lord God Himself which makes it unique. It morally elevates and cleanses a person and directs all of his tasks towards good. If the person masters just one thought or one teaching of Christianity and even that beneficially influences him. Pagan religions were softened and refined under the influence of Christianity. Christianity is the most noble faith of all existing religions. This witness to the fact that this faith was given by the Lord God Himself.
    There are methods to cure alcoholics, drug users and other "holics" (sufferers of some sort of dependency). Methods consist of prayers, studying God's Law, talks with spiritual fathers, applying it to life and physical labor in nature.
    Let us list basic pillars of Orthodox Christianity: relationship with the Lord God; supernatural phenomena; life's direction and program; scale of values; moral education; healing of souls; Orthodox psychotherapy; world outlook; world history and philosophy.

• Благотворное влияние христианства: (ДД-06)
• Христианство спасло человечество от гибели (ДД-06.13)
• Что такое Катихизис (ДД-09)
• История Христианской Церкви. Обзор (ДД-13)
• Введение в Историю Христианской Церкви. Краткий обзор(ДД-13.3)
• Истоки разницы между Западной и Русской Церквами. Русское Православие: (ДД-13.7)
• Жизнь Господа Иисуса Христа (по Темномерову) (ДД-21.1)
• Чудеса Господа Иисуса Христа (по Темномерову) (ДД-21.2)
• Притчи Господа Иисуса Христа (по Темномерову) (ДД-21.3)
• Учение Господа Иисуса Христа (по Темномерову): (ДД-21.4)
• Закон Божий (прот. С. Слободской) (ДД-55р)
• Закон Божий (Прот. Аполлоний Темномеров. 1907 г.) (ДД-55.3р)


221 Orthodoxy. [30июн08]
Note. This Section is continuation of (22) – Christianity.
Summary. Orthodox Christian Church has the beginning from the sermon of the Christ, and then the apostles. It has apostolic succession. It keeps its original teaching without any changes. The head of the Church is Lord Jesus Christ Himself. It consists from approximately 15 local (ethnic, "поместных") independent Churches. The head of each Church is Patriarch, with several exceptions. Local Churches are using local language is used. In 1045 local Roman Catholic Church separated and went its own separate way.

221.1 History. The history of Orthodox Church up to 1054 is common with all others local Churches. In 1054 local Roman Catholic Church separated and went its own separate way. Since that time the Orthodox Church does not recognize their changes in the teaching and their saints.
    The Orthodox Church was engaged in missionary work and spreading of Christianity. This way Orthodoxy spread and created independent from each other local Churches: Russian, Serbian, Romanian, Bulgarian, Albanian, Greek etc. Churches. All of them are independent from each other, but they have common teaching, and all of them recognize each other.
    In the West, before Christianity existed paganism with belief in many gods and idols and corresponding culture. Christianity had to struggle with them. Besides this it inherited much negative from those times.
    In Russia another process was going on. Russian pagan culture was not developed, as it was in the West and consequently it easily gave up its place to Christianity. Christianity is not only the faith the True God, but also the general enlightment. Besides this, by the time of baptism of Russia 988, all church disputes were resolved, and Russians, together with Orthodox faith, received spiritual, moral and cultural stronghold. In this lays the difference between Russian Orthodoxy and its culture from other Christian branches.

221.2 Lord Jesus Christ. There is no need to add anything to this paragraph.

221.3 Teaching. There is no need to add anything to this paragraph.

221.4 Sacred Books. There is no need to add anything to this paragraph.

221.5 Faith and Life. Presently, 2000 years after Christ's sermon, other Christian branches have departed from Christian norms, except Orthodox. Orthodox kept: standing in a church; long divine services; frequent fats; rules of fast, confession, communion etc., etc.

221.6 Beneficial Influence. There is no need to add anything to this paragraph.

Conclusion. The Orthodox Church is that Church which was established by Jesus Christ and apostles almost 2000 years ago, and in which there is an apostolic succession. It possesses truth and completeness of Christian teaching and is unique and original Christ's Church. That is why one can say that Orthodox faith is purest Christianity.
   Orthodox should be joyful and thank Lord God for such a good fortune as to be members of true Christ's Church. In no event they have right to be proud, since pride is a sin. Besides this pride always promotes development in a person many other sins. The knowledge of Russian makes to us accessible huge treasury of spiritual books which are not available in western languages. Therefore, our belonging to the Orthodox faith and knowledge of Russian, imposes on us special responsibility; to know its teaching, to live according to its teaching, and apply special efforts to transmit it to our family, relatives, friends and all others.

• История Христианской Церкви. Обзор (ДД-13)
• Введение в Историю Христианской Церкви. Краткий обзор(ДД-13.3)
• Истоки разницы между Западной и Русской Церквами. Русское Православие: (ДД-13.7)
• История Русской Церкви. Краткие обзоры (ДД-14)


222. Catholicism;  [30июн08]
Note. This Section is continuation of (22) – Christianity.
Summary. The Roman Catholic Church separated from Orthodox in 1054, after VII Ecumenical Council in 787. Since that time they independently convened councils, without participation of Orthodox Churches. All their enactments Orthodox Churches do not recognize. Last Council, XXI Ecumenical Council is known as Vatican II. On each Council changes are made. They reduced and simplified divine services. They suffer with sin of arrogance (pride), dominance, xenofobia, aggression and with these qualities afflicted the whole West. During whole Russian history they tried to take over the whole Russian World.
    It is very important to understand Catholic Church, since this opens eyes on the whole Western world.


222.1 History. From the very beginning of Christianity, in Roman Church there was an aspiration towards supremacy (primacy, being first, leadership) in the Church. The reason for this was the glory of Rome and Roman Empire, and together with it the spread of Roman Church.
    The Roman Church separated from Orthodox in 1054, after VII Ecumenical council in 787. They hold that Orthodox Church separated and call it "Eastern Schism", and Orthodox "schismatics". This view is expressed in all Catholic, Protestant and secular works and institutions. Since then time she independently convened Councils, without participation of Orthodox Churches. All their enactments Orthodox Churches do not recognize. Last Council, XXI Ecumenical Council is known as Vatican II (1962-1965).

222.2 Lord Jesus Christ. Catholics pay more attention to sufferings, tortures and death of Christ, and Orthodox more on sermon of mercy, virtue and love. This is reflected in the Church itself. In their church there are always several crucifixes in three dimensions, looks just like a body of Christ. In Orthodox Church there is only one crucifix, in two dimensions (flat) on the left side, where candles are placed for the memorial.
    Recent Holywood film about Christ concentrated it's attention on tortures and sufferings of Christ. If this film would be filmed by Orthodox then the focus would be on His sermon of love for humanity.
    In Catholic church it is dark, gloomy like in a grave, unlike Orthodox where it is light and beautiful. Sometimes there are cases when Catholics or Protestants enter Russian Orthodox church they are shaken (amazed) by its sanctity, to tears. Sometimes it is their first step to Orthodox baptism.

222.3 Teaching. Though basics of Orthodox and Catholics are the same, but still the teaching of Catholic Church in many ways differs from original Christian, that is Orthodox. It has occurred (happened) for two reasons: (1) they inherited a lot from pagan Roman Empire and (2) they received Christianity in the very beginning when the Church was not yet fully established (teaching and structure). Catholics consider that, only four (4) items (points) are listed:
    (1) that they are true Christ's Church and that Orthodox are "schismatics" (Eastern Schism) and they separated from Catholics.
    (2) that the teaching of the Church with time develops. Orthodox consider, that with VII Ecumenical Council (787) the teaching of the Church was completed. From this follows that they are trying "to go with time" and are constantly adjusting to local conditions. Because on these Councils new rules are constantly developed, in this way they are moving further and further from Orthodox teaching.
    (3) that the head of Church is Pope, and Orthodox view that it is the Lord God Jesus Christ. Therefore to make any change Orthodox have to call VIII Ecumenical Council. Catholics do not have to consult nobody and consequently they convene Councils anytime they want and make any decisions they want. Because of this they have many changes, which sometimes it is necessary to cancel.
    (4) In their teaching the teaching about inner good works, struggle with one's sinfulness, rectification of men's inner world, ascetism is not developed. Catholics view that it is necessary to pray, to observe God's Law Commandments, to do good works (mercy, charity), to serve Church and then the inner virtues, qualities described in Beatitudes, the Lord God will grant. For Orthodox, "Beatitude Commandments" are commandments the believer should develop them. This is why Beatitude Commandments are known as "Beatitudes" and not "Beatitude Commandments" like in Orthodoxy.
    This is why among Catholic clergy and monastics, one can meet often cruelty and promiscuity. This happens more often with nonlatin people, probably it is because they understand less what is the essence (gist) of Christian teaching.

222.4 Sacred Books. Except for sacred books mentioned in (22.4), last Ecumenical Council, Vatican II has produced Catholic Catechism [*].
    [* – Catechism of the Catholic Church. 1995. Image Book published by Doubleday, New York, NY. Soft cover, small format, 826 p. $7.99. http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc.htm].

    Concerning the works of the holy Fathers written by holy Fathers of the Church, among Catholics is popular different group of fathers, despite the facts that both groups, preferred by Orthodox and Catholics, were living at the same time.
    By quantity and quality their literature cannot be compared with Russian. For example: St. John of Kronstadt, St. Tikhon Zadonsky, St. Theophan the Hermit, works the Metropolitans and other fathers of ROCOR, these are only few examples from the large list of authors. All of them enjoy great popularity among Russian people.

222.5 Influence on Life. Presently, 2000 after Christ's sermon, all Christian branches have departed from Christian norms, with exception of Orthodox. As it was mentioned above, Catholics are changing as per local conditions. This is why in the church they do not stand, but sit; the length of divine services is shortened; number of fasts is very reduced; rules of fast are changed beyond recognition etc., etc.
    Catholic Christianity certainly had a beneficial influence on a society, but unfortunately, there is also a negative factor. The basic negative pagan qualities deeply implanted in the society and despite the long-term Christian sermon, they are eliminated with greater difficulty. In this way, pagan life and culture, in particular of a higher class, is characterized with many vices such as: arrogance (pride), conceit ("высокомерие"), love of power, xenophobia, racism, aggression, cruelty, materialism, promiscuity, etc. not only they remained in a society, but also entered the Church and with it spread all over the West. All this entered life and indirectly promoted movement of Reformation, secularism and atheism.
    The main characteristics of the western person is pride (гордыня), conceit (высокомерие) and arrogance (надменность). Most often it they appear in people, holding a high position, in unwillingness to listen to any criticism by others. Xenophobia is shown that they dislike different people and especially Russian. The materialism and pursuit of material wealth always surprises people arriving from Eastern Europe. Aggression and love of power is shown in the capture of many colonies, in disgusting treatment of natives and absurd idea by Napoleon and Hitler to conquer the whole world. That is not all, it is necessary to remember how Germans behaved in occupied countries. Good examples of love of power is slavery, also that in France Napoleon is still considered a hero. It is especially necessary to note promiscuity and so-called "free love", propaganda of immorality. The western Christians fell so low, that even pagan peoples who do not have high Christian teaching, are in horror.

Conclusion. The Catholic Church suffers with aggression passion and is trying to expand worldwide, to take over everything and control everybody. Long time ago they developed a program to seize Russian lands and to convert them to Catholicism. Thus they have created their own paranoia. The "отблески" of Church mistakes spread all over the world.

• История Христианской Церкви. Обзор (ДД-13)
• Введение в Историю Христианской Церкви. Краткий обзор(ДД-13.3)
• Истоки разницы между Западной и Русской Церквами. Русское Православие: (ДД-13.7)
• История Русской Церкви. Краткие обзоры (ДД-14)
• Православие и Католицизм (ДД-16.6)
• О Православии и Католичестве (И.А.Ильин) (ДД-16.9р)
• Что такое гордыня? (ДД-45)
• Внутренний мир гордого человека (ДД-45.5)
• История Христианской Православной Церкви (Протоиерей П.Смирнов. 1903 г.) (ДД-68)


223. Protestantism. [30июн08]
Note. This Section is continuation of (22) – Christianity.
Summary. The Protestantism is simplified Christianity. In it there is less sanctity. Divine service consists of a sermon and several prayers. In the church congregation sits. From Church teaching they recognize only Bible. The Most Holy Virgin Mary is not revered, there are no saints, icons, fast, confessions, communion etc. They believe that person is saved only by faith, not good deeds. They consider themselves Christians, but not Orthodox and Catholics.

223.1 History. Due to many and obvious deviations of Roman Church from Christian teaching, and also because Catholic monk Martin Luther (1483-1546) did not know about the existence of Orthodox Church, he demanded in 1517 changes. This fact became the beginning of "Reformation", when many people started leaving Roman Church into new so called Protestant Churches. This was movement for improvement of the Church, but result was even worse.
    Due to uncertainty of their teaching many new Protestant and Sectarian Churches were created. Because they do not have apostolic succession and many other reasons, the Orthodox Church does not recognize them for Churches, but only as Christian societies.
    There are many Protestant "Churches" (organizations, religions), around 20,000 [*] They all think about themselves as Christians, and others not, especially Catholics and Orthodox. Besides this they are spreading russophobia.
    [* The author of this work thinks, that it is not quite correct. Separate Protestant religions, in the whole world, probably amount to about 5000. The matter is that in America there are many churches independent of anybody. Often they have their prayerful assemblies in huge halls, like sports stadium. Ordinarily some preacher, starts preaching and gradually collects around of himself a whole community. Then they registered as the independent church which is not part of any other church structure. There area many these kind of Churches. In official statistics, such independent church are probably counted as a separate religion. For example, democratic candidate for the president (2008) Barack Obama was a member of one such church-religion].
    Among Protestant denominations it is possible to name following: Anglicans, Episcopalians, Baptists, Lutherans, Presbyterians, Methodists, Quakers, etc.

223.2 Lord Jesus Christ. As it was said above, Protestantism is simplified Christianity. In it there is less sanctity and respect of sanctity. Christ in their version is more a person, a preacher, than a son of the Lord God. His mother Most Holy Virgin Mary, is not especially revered.

223.3 Teaching. Protestants were dissatisfied with Roman Church leadership and they almost deleted 1500 of Christian experience in the Church and left only the Sacred Scripture (Bible). They do not recognize confession, icons, saints, fast – everything, that is needed for spiritual life, correction and saving the person. It came that they retained Holy Scripture, and Christian Church which developed and approved the Scripture did not recognize.
    Because they did not recognize Holy Fathers who explained and interpreted Christian faith, and use only Bible, they have uncertainty in their teaching and slowly appeared many various sects (Churches). Now, in the whole world, there are about 33,000 different sects which name themselves Christian!
    Protestant Churches have no apostolic succession. This is one of many reasons why Orthodox Church does not recognize them as Churches, but only as Christian societies.
    Protestants have a teaching, that the person is saved by faith only. Therefore they believe that if person believes in God, he will be already saved. This kind of approach creates in believers increased self-confidence and arrogance.

223.4 Sacred Books. From all Church teaching, Protestants recognize only the Bible. But, they do not recognize noncanonical books of the Bible (which Orthodox and Catholics recognize), therefore they are not included in their editions. This concerns the Bibles which they distribute worldwide, including Russian World.
    They are not familiar with Christian saints who interpreted the Scripture, therefore they started interpreting in their own way.
    Protestants do not have literature of Holy Fathers. Recently they started publishing religious literature, but it is of poor quality.
    Unfortunately their visions of God pushes away many from the Church. Many consider Him angry and demanding something from people what is unreal.

223.5 Faith and Life. Presently, 2000 years after the sermon of Christ, other Christian branches have departed from Christian norms (rules), except Orthodox. As it was said above, Protestants are adjusting to local conditions. Therefore in their churches people do not stand, but sit; divine services were changed, basically they are not divine services, but sermons with few prayers; fasts are not present; confessions and communions are not existing etc.

223.6 Beneficial Influence. Protestant Christianity certainly also rendered beneficial influence, but unfortunately, here too, like in a Catholicism, there is also a negative factor. Sins of Catholic Church have infected also Protestant: pagan arrogance, materialism, xenophobia, aggression, dominance have remained in the Church and were carried worldwide. All this affected life and indirectly promoted Reformation, secularism and atheism.

Conclusion. Protestantism, this is very simplified Christianity. Certainly, in some cases, it is better than nothing, in particular if the person does not get involved in their dogmatic teaching. But, truly believing and spiritually inclined person cannot be satisfied by Protestantism.
    Listening to radio programs of Protestants, on various subjects, they are not to far from Christian teaching. But if they will start talking about their theory, dogma then certainly they far from the pure Christian Orthodox teaching.
    Unfortunately they conducting propaganda against Orthodox and Russian. Some groups interpret Bible and say that it says over there that Russia will attack Israel, US will defend it and this will be the end of the world.
    They consider themselves Christians, but not Orthodox and Catholics.

• История Христианской Церкви. Обзор (ДД-13)
• Введение в Историю Христианской Церкви. Краткий обзор(ДД-13.3)
• Православие и протестантизм (ДД-16)
• 33,000 Denominations http://www.bringyou.to/


224. Sectarians. [28июн08]
Note. This Section is continuation of  №22 – Christianity.
Summary. Sectarians are Christian or semichristian societies which separated from Catholics, Protestants or Orthodox, or were organized (set up, begun) by someone, irrespective of any other religion. In other words, these groups-churches or have lost touch with the historical Church, or they never had it. They have, at their own discretion, changed and have distorted her many teachings until it is not recognized any more. Many of them believe in Lord Jesus Christ, but in their own way.

224.1 Hisory. Due to many deviations of Roman Church from Christian teaching, Martin Luther (1483-1546) demanded in 1517 changes. This fact became the beginning of "Reformation" movement and creation of many Protestant churches. Due to uncertainty of their teaching many new Protestant and Sectarian Churches were created. Because they do not have apostolic succession and many other reasons, the Orthodox Church does not recognize them for Churches, but only as Christian societies.
    Since there is no exact definition of a sect it is possible to say tentatively, that, these are those pseudo-Christians who do not recognize the Symbol of Faith (Creed). Some of them interpret Bible in their own way, or even have their own version of the Bible.
    There are many Protestant and Sectarian "Churches" (religions), more than 20,000. All of them consider themselves Christian, and all others not, especially Catholics and Orthodox. Besides this some of them are spreading russophobia. According to their interpretation of the Bible, Russia will attack Israel, US will defend it, there will be a war and this will be the end of the world.
    Among sectarians it is possible to name: Christian science, Mormons, Adventists of the Seventh day, etc.

224.2 Lord Jesus Christ. As it was said above, the Protestantism is a simplified Christianity, and Sectarians have even more simplifications and deviations. In it there is less sanctity and respect for sanctity. The Christ according to their version is more a person, preacher, than son of the Lord God. His mother Most Holy Virgin Maria, is not especially revered.

224.3 Teaching. Sectarians are Christian or semiChristian societies which separated from Catholics, Protestants or Orthodox, or were organized (begun) by someone, irrespective of other religions.
     Basically they are against Church and Church structure. They feel (think) that Christian churches should like those in early centuries of Christianity. That is why they are against what they call "organized religion".
    This idea was picked by secularists (31), who are always trying to present organized religion as something evil. The reason is, because the organization makes any movement strong and it is hard to fight against it.
    Christianity and Christian Church was evolving during seven Ecumenical Councils (I-VII, 325-787) and the whole Church-Christian culture was developed, which helps realize Christ's sermon in life. All this was ignored by protestants and sectarians. See Orthodoxy and Protestantism (in Russian): (ДД-16).
    In other words, these groups-Churches lost contact with historical Church, or they never had it. According to their own will they changed or distorted many of her teachings, until it is not recognized any more many. Many of them believe in Lord Jesus Christ, but in their own way.
    If one could imagine the Orthodox faith as a Christmas tree, where everything on it is instructive, beautiful, deep, plentiful and purposeful and has some kind of deep spiritual and moral meaning and value. Sectarians can then be presented as more and more a simple and empty fur-tree and in some cases even a simple naked artificial trunk. Other comparison, it that at orthodox is well equipped hospital which treats and helps(assists) people, with the advanced methods. At sectarians it is simply a box with aspirin. Other comparison, is that Orthodox have well equipped hospital which treats and helps people, with most modern methods. Sectarians then have only a small box with aspirins.

224.4 Sacred Books. Sectarians recognize Bible, but often they have their own version ir own interpretation.

224.5 Faith and Life. Sectarians often have characteristics of cults and even brainwashing. If one does not have a very deep contact with them, then sometimes they can help, but if the person begins to get involved with them on a deeper level, then this is dangerous and can bring mental breakdown.

Conclusion. When listening to the radio programs by sectarians, on real life subjects, they are not to far from Christian teaching. But if they will start to talk about their theory, dogma, then certainly they are far from pure Orthodox Christianity.
    Sectarians by their form, structure, teaching, activity very often look like cults (4).


23. Mohammedanism or Islam. [27мая08]
Summary. Mohammedanism is monotheistic religion, together with Christianity and Judaism. It appeared in the beginning of VII century in Arab countries. The founder was prophet Mohammed, later governor of a city-state. He was born and lived in the city of Mecca. The sacred book is Koran (Qur'an). It is a mix of Christianity, Judaism and paganism. They believe in one God-Allah, life after death, moderation in food, fast, prayer, good deeds, forbidden alcohol and pork, polygamy allowed.

23.1 Terms. Mohammedanism; Muslim; Moslem; Islam.

23.2 History. Islam is a monotheistic religion, together with Christianity and Judaism. By numbers 1.5 billion it is in second place, after Christianity. Mohammedanism appeared in the beginning of VII century, among the Arab tribes in Western Arabia. It developed under the influence of Christianity, Judaism and paganism, and has several directions (currents).
    In Russia, for a long time, there are many moslems who peacefully live and coexist with Orthodox majority. Now there are around 20 million.

23.3 Founder of Islam was prophet Muhammad (around 570-632), later the head of a city-state. He was born and lived in city of Mecca. Now it is in Saudi Arabia. This city is considered sacred for Moslems and every believer should make a pilgrimage to it. Muhammad was a family person and had several wives.

23.4 Koran (Qur'an) is a sacred book for Moslems. It is considered, that it was a divine revelation to prophet Muhammad. The book consists of sermons, prayers, instructive stories and parables. The book "hadith" is a biography of prophet Muhammad, his works and pronouncements. There are many of such "hadith".

23.5 Teaching. The islam represents a mix of Christianity, Judaism and paganism; they believe in one God, life after death; moderation in food, fast, prayer, good deeds, particularly helping poor; forbids alcohol and pork. Moslems are practicing polygamy (plural marriage).
    Moslems believe in one God-Allah and do not recognize Holy Trinity. The Islam considers Abraham, Moses, Jesus Christ and Muhammad himself prophets, messengers from Allah. Do not recognize divinity of Lord Jesus Christ and His Resurrection. Have no icons and consider this idolatry.
    Moslems pray several times a day, kneeling on a special small blanket. Women walk in loose overalls and with covered head and only with woman's face visible. In some Muslim branches the women's face is also covered.

23.6 Five "Pillars of Faith". For a Moslem it is obligatory to fulfill five "Pillars of Faith":
    (1) To recite the "Shahadah". The Moslem says: "I bear witness that there is no God but Allah and that Muhammad is His messenger". Sincerely to say shahadah is all that is required from a person to become a Moslem;
    (2) To Pray (Salat). The Moslem every day has to recite seventeen kanonical prayers "rak'a" ("ракатов"). Prayers are done five times per day – on sunrise, at midday, at 3-4 pm, on sundown and at 2 hours after sundown. Moslems can pray by themselves, or in groups. Before a prayer each Moslem is obliged to make ritual washing which is refered as "гусл". During a prayer the face should be directed to Mecca. Midday divine service on Friday – is the only time when all Moslems should gather in a mosque;
    (3) To Fast (Saum). In a memory of Mohammed receiving Koran in the ninth month of a lunar calendar, "Ramadan", Moslems are obliged to fast during the day, during this whole month. During a fast they are to abstain from food, drink, smoking and sexual contacts. After a sunset all this is allowed – but only until the dawn;
    (4) To give Alms (Zakat). Moslems are required to give one fortieth (2.5%) of their incomes to poor and needy;
    (5) To make the Pilgrimage (Haji). Every Moslem, even once in his lifetime, is required to make a trip to Mecca, if only health and means allow. All pilgrims are dressed in white clothes, which are called "ихрам". This removes all social and class distinctions between them. Procedure for visiting several sacred places usually takes more than a week. After pilgrimage everyone who has made it receives a name "Hajj" ("хаджи"). For example Moslem named Murat after pilgrimage becomes "Hajj-Murat" ("Хаджи-Мурат").
    It is considered, that the observance of these and other precepts, the Allah who strictly judges men, will grant faithful to achieve an eternal life, which is represented as a place of full satisfaction of human needs.

23.7 Ramadan is Muslim fast. During the fast they do not eat anything, but after midnight they can eat anything. Never eat pork and drink alcoholic beverages.

23.8 Mosque house for Moslem prayers. Almost always mosque has one or several "minarets", towers for calling for prayers. Due to requirements for cleanliness, before the entrance in a mosque, the footwear must be removed.

23.9 Clerics. «Мулла» is Muslim cleric. "Mufti" is Muslim theologian resolving legal issues on the basis of Koran.

23.10 Tolerance to non-Muslims. Mohammedanism (Islam) is not same in all Muslim countries. In some countries there is intolerance for Christians. For example in Saudi Arabia Bibles are forbidden. On one hand they can be understood, since there are Christian groups who aggressively try to prove inferiority of Muslim faith and wish to convert them into their own faith, often it is some kind of sect. This way they are creating discord and undermining peace and unity of the country.

23.11 "Sharyat" is Moslem's moral legal system. In some countries state law is correlated with Sheriyat.
    Conquests. A one time Moslems were characterized with aggressiveness and took over large part of Asia Minor and Eastern Europe (Constantinople (1453), Serbia, Greece, Crimea). Constantinople was renamed into Istanbul. Well-known largest in the world Othodox Christian Cathedral of St. Sofia was changed into a mosque with four minarets. Gradually they were superseded from Eastern Europe and on this territory new Slavic states were formed: Serbia, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Poland and Orthodox Romania. Constantinople-Istanbul remained in hands the Turk.
    Church of Constantinople, baptized Russians and spread Christianity among Slavs, was in Constantinople. At first Russian Church was part of Church of Constantinople (988-1448), until it become independent (1448). When Moslem Turks left Eastern Europe Istanbul-Constantinople stayed in their hands, and Patriarch the head of Church of Constantinople remained in Muslim world. Greek ("Эладская") Church long time ago separated from mother Church of Constantinople and it is governed by the Greek metropolitan. Patriarch of the Church of Constantinople is in present Istanbul and rules Orthodox Churches in emigration. For example Greek parishes outside of Greece are in his jurisdiction.


23.12 Influence of Christianity. At first Mohammedanism (Islam), like all other non-Christian religions was characterized by its cruelty, but gradually adjoining (by osmosis) to the teaching men-loving-Christianity gradually softened up. Christianity if it could not immediately realized its teaching, but it gave clear understanding of good and evil, and right and wrong, and it affected other religions.

Conclusion. Mohammedanism is not a complex (difficult) religion and this is why it is acceptable by many absolutely different people. It includes belief in God, prayer, fast, observance of rules, pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia etc. Recently, with the decline of Christianity in the West, there are people who convert to Islam. It gives structure, discipline, an explanation of the society and what is most important, the western spiritual and moral collapse did not effect it yet.

• Собор Александра Невского в Новосибирске http://www.nevskiy.orthodoxy.ru/
• Имам.Ру http://www.imam.ru/
• Благотворное влияние христианства (ДД-06)
• Благотворное влияние христианства. Примечания (ДД-06.12)
• Number of Muslims in various countries http://islamicweb.com/
• Доклад епископа Илариона 30 мая 2008 г. в Вене: http://www.rusk.ru/


24. Judaism. [27июня08]
Summary. "Iudei" are those Jews who did not believe in Christ and went separate way. They continue to believe that they are God's chosen people, consider Christ a dangerous rebel and magician and still expect coming of the Messiah. They do not recognize the New Testament, apostles, saints, Christian Church and in general the whole Christianity.

24.1 History. Judaism differs from religion of ancient Jews (21). The faith of ancient Jews was ancestor (prereligion) of Christian faith and Lord Jesus Christ appeared among them. But after arrival (coming) of Christ, Jews divided. Those who recognized Him for Messiah, became Christians. We know about them from History of Christian Church etc. Those who did not recognize Him went different way and their descendants are present Jews.

24.2 Three branches of Judaism. Presently Jews gradually broke into three groups: Devout (Orthodox), Conservative (Conservative) and Reformed Jews.

24.3 Jesus Christ. The sermon of the Christ was based on the Old Testament and deepened it. When ancient Jews accused Him, that He is teaching something different He answered them: "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil" (Matthew 5:17 KJV).
    Besides this, Christ taught that "neighbor" who has to be loved, is not only Jew fellow countryman (compatriot), but any person. This He explained it in Parable about Merciful Samaritan (Matthew 18:21-35; Luke 17:3-4).
    Listening to Jesus Christ, Jews divided in two groups. The first group followed Him and they became the first Christians. The second group did not accepted His deepened teaching. They considered Jesus Christ a dangerous agitator and a magician and went different way.

24.4 Sacred Books. Jewish sacred book is Bible. It contains only the Old Testament and does not contain the New Testament, since Jews do not recognize Jesus Christ.
    During many years to the Bible (Old Testament) was added still another book, Talmud. It was written in the Middle Ages by learned rabbis. This book contains interpretation of the Old Testament and detailed explanation as how to behave in any life situation. Besides it they also have other books. It is necessary to say that they excluded the Book of Prophet Daniel from the Old Testament and some other books, as they have prophecies of coming Jesus Christ.
    Jews interpret Bible in their own way, and not as Christians and certainly they do not recognize the New Testament. The same thing can be said about Moslems, secularists and atheists. Christians too interpret it in their own way. There is even a difference between interpretation of Orthodox, Catholics and Protestants. Therefore, when using non-orthodox literature it is necessary to keep this in mind.
    Torah sets (secures) the basic dogmas and commandments of Judaism. It was published in V century before BC, in Jerusalem.

24.5 Teaching. Judaism is based (founded, established) on following dogmas: (1) recognition of one God; (2) "богоизбранности" of Jewish people; (3) belief in Messiah who will judge all alive and dead, and will bring followers to the promised land; (4) sanctity of Old Testament and Talmud.
    Since the whole world gradually accepted Christian values, both our culture and a civilization became known as Christian culture and a civilization, Jews, also as other non-Christian peoples accepted many Christian teachings.

24.6 Persecution of Jews. Since Jews did not recognize and were hostile to Christ, Holy Virgin Mary and all Christianity, in many countries there was persecution of Jews, which presently has gradually quieted down.

Conclusion. After 2000 of wandering, Jewish people eventually returned to their ancestral home – Israel. For Orthodox it is referred as Holy Land. In this country there are many Christian and Orthodox relics: churches, monasteries, famous places connected with the life of Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore Christian and Orthodox pilgrims go there. Here, on a Lord's grave(?), on Orthodox Easter, always appears Holy Fire.

• Собор Александра Невского в Новосибирске: http://www.nevskiy.orthodoxy.ru/
• Древо. Открытая православная энциклопедия: http://drevo.pravbeseda.ru/


3 – UNBELIEF. [23июн08]
In this section there are groups which are not religions, but ideologies. They are hostile and are fighting (battling) Christianity, but tolerant to other religions. This is applicable to Secularism (31) and Atheism (32).
    Strictly speaking some religions do not believe in God, like Buddhism (12.2) and Confucianism (12.3), and they are placed together in chapter on Eastern Religions (12). They do not have well defined teaching. Many of them change and adjust to local conditions, especially to Christianity, and are becoming more religions than ideologies and world outlooks.


31. Secularism. [23июня08]
Secularism is a postchristian godless culture. It appeared in the West, because of the abuses by Western Church and representation of God as a dictator who demands something unreal, instead of loving Father who teaches how to live honestly. This led many people to discontent and in 1517 Luther begins Reformation movement, creation of Protestant Church. After this, appeared writers, philosophers, scientists who with their works promoted disbelief: Darwin, Marx, Nietzsche, Freud, etc. Disbelief gradually extended and gained in strength. It transformed (changed, passed) into Secularism, and then into Atheism, in the different countries differently. In Russia atheists seized power in 1917 and held it until 1991. Now Atheism was replaced by Secularism, which was similar to it. In 1960th in USA there was a cultural revolution which gave a big push to even further secularization of the country, and then of the whole world.

31.1 Definition. It is difficult to give exact definition to secularism. It is possible to say, that it is postchristian godless culture similar to Christian, but without God, Christ, Church hierarchy, prayers, divine services, Seventh (7) Commandment (be faithful to spouse), Beatitude Commandments (blessed are: poor in spirit; mourning; humble; thirsty for Truth; charitable; pure in hearth; peacemakers) etc. It is characterized by christophobia and if not by oppression, then by prejudice (bias).

31.2 History. In our time, all western countries are slowly overcome by disbelief, which slowly evolved into Secularism or Secular Humanism. After cultural revolution of 1960th and present cultural war, Secularism is gradually becoming aggressive atheism. All schools, colleges, universities, media, everything is taken over by secularists. Everything written, is presented from secular point of view, which is presented as the highest truth. Exception are some schools, church organizations, magazines etc.

31.3 Reasons. Secularism appeared in the West because (due to) of the abuses by Western Church and incorrect interpretation of God's Law. Lord God is seen as severe (stern) and even mean, punishing everybody and requiring certain behavior, often against human nature and not knowing why. Many of these requirements are seen as a paradox and contradictory to common sense. Their religious genre (language style) is full heartless words like: must, obedience, obligation, punishment, "страшный суд", hell etc.
     Deviation from Christian spirit by Western Church finally brought many people to dissatisfaction. In 1517, famous sale of indulgences became the cause for Catholic monk Martin Luther (1483-1546) to separate from Roman Catholic Church and start Reformation. Formation of new Church based only on Bible, and without Church structure, rituals, priests, Church tradition, culture etc.
     Discovery of new lands, invention of printing press and other machines, Industrial Revolution, all this supported background feeling, that man can do everything by himself, and he does not need God. Much later Maxim Gorky expressed this thought with words: "man – this sound proud (grand, great, dignified)".
    All this created favorable atmosphere for appearance of animosity to Western Church, disbelief, secularism, christophobia, atheism etc. Appeared godless literature and various atheistic teachers like Charles Darwin (1809-1882), Karl Marx (1818-1883), Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900), Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) etc. Darvin was a believer, but developed theory of evolution, which atheists adopted like their own. Marx, political philosopher, atheist, criticized capitalism and wrote about socialism. Nietzsche, philosopher, atheist, wrote against Christianity, glorified man and laid a foundation to atheism. Freud, doctor, atheist, laid a foundation to psychoanalysis, which did not take in account spiritual characteristics of a man.

31.4 Cultural Revolution of 1960th. In 1960th in America were happening several critical (key) events, which changed its very essence. From conservative Christian country, it became very liberal. This process started with cultural revolution, and now there is a creeping cultural war.
    Main Components of Agitation. Listed in short are main components of agitation (disturbances, unrest) which were occuring 40 years ago: (1) Most basic event was the war in Vietnam (1956-1975). There was a military draft. Young people were sent to war, who did not understand why. This led to demonstrations, riots, arrests, flight out of the country etc. (2) Started movement against the discrimination of blacks in south, again demonstrations, arrests, killings; (3) Several political killings occured. President Kennedy was killed, his brother Robert, murderer of the president, famous leader of blacks Martin Luther King, famous movie star Marlin Monroe committed suicide; (4) Took place riots by blacks, they started fires in cities and looting; (5) appeared narcotics, wild music, propaganda of sexual permissiveness, religious cults and communes; (6) appeared religious movements: Hinduism [121], Buddhism [122], New Age [41] and others; (7) sodomites and feminists started to organize themselves etc.
    Appearance of sexually transmitted Diseases. Appeared Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD) and especially incurable fatal HIV/AIDS. It is said that 75% of youth in California are infected with incurable herpes. Fear of these diseases inhibited youth riot and slowly revolution subsided and changed into peaceful, creeping cultural war.
     [HIV (Human Imunodeficiency Virus) leads to AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome)]

    Damage of the whole Generation. Disturbance continued for about ten years. Slowly everything quieted, despite the support of media. Most of the young people and grownups, in the age of 13 to 14, during these years were under the influence of this movement. Slowly, some of them due to immoral (corrupt) and fast life "burned" and prematurely died, others committed suicide, third ended up in mental hospitals, fourth stay and continue to live with parents, because they do not have enough of discipline for independent life and work. Still most of them somehow entered into normal life of the country, but their world outlook was very much affected and they were "different – not like their parents". This is how the whole generation was qualitatively damaged.
    Damage of the Society. The 1960th generation has now grown up and matured. Youth with technical education was not greatly affected by it. Main veterans of this movement received liberal education. They are now in media, government, schools, etc. They are the source of spoilage, which is felt in many areas of American and in general western life. In the first place are the schools were these former hippies (rebels) instead of normal curriculum, are constantly experimenting with children. The same thing is happening in universities. The textbooks are being rewritten and introduced special courses in order to raise importance of blacks, women, pagan religion, sodomites, sexual permissiveness etc. They are trying to reduce influence of parents, Church and in general adults. The state of schools is so bad, that many parents organized home schooling and are working by themselves with their children. Because of these people, in all corners of the country, there is spoilage and damage. They are self-confident, arrogant, conceited (самодуры) and have many totally unrealistic ideas. Because this generation is now in charge of the country, they have an opportunity to put them into practice. As a result of this, mistakes (errors) in different areas are made. This is not a big problem, but the real tragedy is other countries, including the CIS, people do not understood sources and the essence of cultural revolution, and start to copy these innovations at home. Thus way the damage is spread all over the world.
    Крайне-либеральная культурная революция: (ЗЗ-12)


31.5 Teaching. Strict following of apostles of atheism: Darvin, Marx, Nietzsche, Freud and others. There is no Higher Force or God. Holy Scripture are legends. Religion is needed to weak people, strong ones do not need it. Sex is allowed among any persons, if both are in agreement. Church is using people's ignorance and is enslaving them. The world always existed. Invisible world does not exist. There is no afterlife. Moral norms are made up by people for survival.
    Especially one should note negative action of secular psychology which is built on christophobic base. Freud was teaching, that the base of human behavior is sex. Another was teaching that it is power. In general psychiatry mixes up a sick person and forces him to get absorbed even more into his problems. Orthodox psychology which is based on the teaching of Christ, Church and Holy Fathers gives all answers for the modern man.

31.6 Creeping Revolution. Media always writes something negative about Christians, and good and positive ignores. In all schools atheistic theories are taught like they are a scientific truth, say Darvin and Freud. Religious, especially Christian, news are ignored. Conducted active dechristianization of the society. There is fight (struggle) against Christian holidays, Christian symbols etc. Instead of this secular and liberal values are being pushed: there is no God, Christianity is evil, it chains a person, takes away his liberty, sex is for fun, morality is relative, abortions are allowed etc. This creeping revolution is especially directed towards children, in schools.
    This creeping revolution is already happening several decades. Only recently it was identified and action started against it.
    Очень хорошая книга на эту тему: Гонение. Дэйвид Лимбо. David Limbaugh. Persecution. Hardcover, 2003, Regnery Publishing, Washington, DC. Perennial (YarperCollins), New York, NY.

Conclusion. Secularism is slowly introduced and penetrated all areas of life. There is no dictatorship in the society, but there is a concept of being politically correct or politically incorrect which are practiced, and to be a believer is becoming harder and harder. Christophobia is becoming worse and worse. Many Churches got infected with secularism and are loosing their members. But, there is noticeable sobering up. Churches which are not infected with secularism experience increase in membership. This is on the West.
    After the fall of state atheism in Eastern Europe, similar to eat secularism replaced it. But, on the other hand, there is revival of Christianity and in general all religions. This is also noticeable in underdeveloped countries (third world).

• Много информации есть в книге Гонение (на христиан) Давида Лимбо. David Limbaugh. Persecution. Hardcover, 2003, Regnery Publishing, Washington, DC. Perennial (YarperCollins), New York, NY.
• Обзор книги: Уникальность христианства. Динеш Де'Суза: (ДД-79)


32. Atheism. [24июн08]
Atheists do not believe in God, but only in what they can see with their own eyes. This attitude is extremely unrealistic, since in the world there are many things which is unexplainable. For example ordinary long distance telepathy nobody can explain. Same thing can be said about premonition.
    In the beginning of last century (XX) revolutionaries seized power in Russia, and tried to put into practice, by force, their made up, unproven theories. After 74 years, they and their children died off, and their grandchildren did not want to continue their work, and many returned to God and Church.


32.1 Definition. Atheism, this same as secularism, but its disbelief is more pronounced, aggressive and militant. Atheists do not believe in God, but only in what they can see with their own eyes. Agnostic is basically an atheist, but he claims, that if it will be proven to him that there is God, he will become believer.
    Ordinarily nothing can be proven to agnostic. But, there was an interesting case with English professor and philosopher C.S.Lewis (1898-1963). He was an atheist, but after a long talk with his friend he became believer. He did not only became a believer, but he also wrote many works explaining truth and wisdom of Christianity.

32.2 Atheistic Countries. In 1917 revolutionaries atheists have seized power in Russia, with the aim of creating the communistic atheist state, and to spread this system across the whole world. After 74 years, on holy day of Transfiguration of the Lord, their government fell and the new one rejected atheism.
    They wanted to create a socialist, classless society. For this purpose it was necessary to first destroy all the enemies: the clergy, monastics, intelligentsia, merchant class, prosperous peasants (kulaks), members of White Guards, etc. To achieve this they preached hostility and class hatred. This is a big sin, and the characteristic of the sin is that it is destructive. In any way, this system existed until its authors were alive. After their death, everything started returning to the former life and culture, built on Christian principles.

32.3 Atheists vary. Atheists can be tentatively divided into several types: (1) "Orthodox" atheists who agree with everything that Orthodoxy teaches, except that they cannot accept the existence of God; (2) doubtful of God's existence; (3) definitely unbelievers; (4) militant atheists hostile towards believers and (5) "zombied" (totally brainwashed) atheists. The last ones read and studied atheistic classics and even "scientific atheism". For them history, economics, society, wars, religions, everything and everything can be explained with "scientific atheism". These kind of people are close to paranoia, since they are living in an unreal world (live in a bubble). "Zombied" type could be developed only in communist countries.
    In the West one can meet atheists of a different kind. They are disappointed with western religions, more not religions, but sects and cults. They came to their outlook alone, or under somebodies influence. During whole history of humanity, people tried to make a connection with divine. Some of them have are authors, with some kind of pathological hate for God. How conceited should How opinionated they have to be to insist, that everybody was wrong, and they are right. This is why they are self-righteous and arrogant (proud). Here are several well known authors: Richard Dawkins; Sam Harris; Victor Stenger; Christopher Hitchens. There are also other writers who are writing antireligious and antichristian brochures (tracts). In Europe philosopher Michel Onfry wrote well known "Atheist Manifesto".

32.4 Criticism of Christianity. Criticism of Christianity by atheists is very inadequate because it is based on total incomprehension of Christianity, Holy Scripture, ignorance of works of Holy Fathers etc. If they would understand, and would be honest then they would become believing Christians. Recently, as a reaction to increased interest to Christianity, appeared several books written by famous atheists, which are trying to prove the absurdity of the faith.

Conclusion. Atheism does not teach anything. It is cold, it criticizes, mocks, distorts, it is superficial and at the end of life promises total disappearance from life. Christianity warms, teaches, brings joy, inspires, heals, promises immortality etc. etc.

• Записки о Марксизме: (ДД-75)
• Обзор книги: Уникальность христианства. Динеш Де'Суза: (ДД-79)
• Список работ на тему неверия и атеизма: Неверие
• Атеизму нет: http://www.ateismy.net/
• The Atheist Manifesto: http://www.4degreez.com/


4 – CULTS. [24июн08]
There is no exact definition for protestants, sectarians and cults.
    Approximately one can say that protestants are groups that separated from Roman Catholic Church, after 1517. They believe in Lord Jesus Christ, recognize Symbol of Faith (Creed) sometimes modified and Bible. Sectarians moved further from protestants. Often they have their own Bible etc. Cults, most often do not recognize Christ, and if they recognize, then their vision of Him is very much different than Orthodox.

• Религия и культ. А.М.Рассказов: http://azbyka.ru/


41. New Age. [25июня08]
Summary. New Age is the most known occult [*] cult of our time. In short, these are people who lost their Christian spiritual reference points and are coming back into Paganism. It has arisen in the West, during 1960th cultural revolution. Rejects Christianity. Is a mix of many different cults. Basically it is Indian, Buddhist, occult, pagan, theosophy, astrology, magic and other teachings. Does not have one specified teaching and consists of many directions(?). Participants of this movement have taken root in schools, colleges, universities, mass-media and are trying to reform society as per their vision.
    [ * Occult, this is a relationship with dark forces, which are not of God. Christian Churches consider them harmful and affecting badly people. It is known, that under their influence personality of people gets damaged. They become arrogant, self-confident, christophobs (Christ haters), mean, haters  etc. After that it is very difficult for them to recover].

41.1 History. New Age is the most well known occult cult of our times. It originated in the West, during cultural revolution [31.4]. Since main parts of movement was free love and rebellion against parents, Christian religion was not suitable (befitting). Ten Commandments were given 1500 years before BC to ancient Jews, forefathers of Christians. Fifth was talking about obedience and love towards parents, and seventh about moral purity (clensiness). Since they do not satisfy basic postulates of New Age, and they were not atheists and had spiritual needs, they had to join all kinds of sects and cults, which were available. In general they were Hinduism, Buddhism, occult [*], pagan, theosophic and other teachings. This way started the movement New Age, which includes many various currents.

41.2 Other Names. New Age in Russian translation is "New Time", "New Era", and also "Era of "Водолея" ".

41.3 Teaching. Different currents of the New Age have some common elements:
    (1) Expectation of great transformations. These transformations should "select" from mankind special new race of superpeople with superabilities.
    (Christian: the person is sinful, the sin blacks out the reason and consequently the view that does not consider spiritual purification – is unreal. Needed prayer, difficult and laborious work on inner self, cleansing oneself from sinfulness.
    (2) Rejection of Christianity. Expectation of new teaching which will satisfy progressing mankind, who outgrew age of Christianity.
    (Chr: This is how western people can argue, who are not familiar with ascetic Orthodoxy, works of holy fathers and the whole Orthodox world. Western Christianity really came to the dead end, and has nothing more to say).
    (3) Contact (connection) with invisible world. Prevalence of eastern methods of meditations, expansions of consciousness, magic, shamanism etc.
    (Chr: There are invisible forces, good and evil. These methods are flirting with unknown, not realizing what man is doing).
    (4) Reincarnation and Karma.
    (Chr: Lord Jesus Christ spoke nothing about reincarnation. Reincarnation ends with a man finally deserving nirvana and changing into nothing. Very pessimistic view of the end and essence of life. A person has free will, he can always repent and correct, and therefore there is no karma. The sin is a destructive action (deed, word or thought) and therefore if a person sins he is digging a hole for himself).
    (5) World Government. Expectation of the world (global) state headed by the world (global) government.
    (Chr: According to Christian teaching, this is the coming of antichrist).
    (6) Nonresistance to Evil. Attitude of nonresistance to evil, unacceptance of any wars, including protection of national interests.
    (Chr: This is unrealistic. According to Christianity the protection of the family, "neighbor", own country is obligatory. In the Gospel it is said: "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends". (John 15:13 KJV)).
    (7) All Religions are same. All religions teach the same thing. These are different ways that lead to God.
    (Chr: This is how people talk (speak) who did not study other religions. All religions see God in their own way, although they have some similarities. This is happening for three reasons. Because: (1) all religions evolved from one "prareligion"; (2) are based on God given conscience. In the Message Over Apostle Paul to Romans it is told: "...For when the pagans* (Gentiles), which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: Which show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts..." (Romans 2:14-15 KJV)(*in Russian Bible); (3) having contact with Christianity, religion of love for humans, all religions christianized, adopted Christian characteristics and it seems to people that they are all the same.
    (8) Universe is sacred. Universe, all in it, including all people and us is sacred, and is God.
    (Chr: Such understanding of things leads a person to arrogance, great ego and paranoia [*]).
    [* Paranoia is mental illness. Usually it occurs when person lives alone, in his own world (bubble). He has his own strange explanation (usually wrong and negative) of all things and events].
    (9) Morality is relative. Moral norms are relative, dependent on society and its culture. Insisting that they are absolute – brings big harm to a society.
    (Chr: Moral postulates given to us by the Lord God are absolute. But, it is necessary to know how to correctly interpret them and apply. For this purpose it is necessary to have Christian wisdom ("благоразумие"), to know "Psychology of Adjustment" and to know life. Therefore in the Orthodox world, though people know commandments, they go to spiritual fathers and "stracy" ("старцы") for advice).
    In Slobodskoy textbook, after description of commandments follows conclusion in which it says: "Conclusion. After obtaining knowledge of the true faith and Christian life (piety) we should be always guided by them in our life. But, to correctly and for our salvation use the knowledge of faith and piety, it is necessary for each Christian to have virtue of reasoning, that is Christian wisdom (prudence, foresight, "благоразумие"). Apostle Peter, addressing Christians, was saying: "show in your faith virtue, in virtue reasoning" (2 Peter 1:5, Russian Bible). What is done without wisdom (unwisely), can be unreasonable, and even can bring harm, instead of benefit". God's Law (Prot. S. Slobodskoy: (ДД-55р)
    (10) Occult Methods. Very popular: astrology, paranormal phenomena, alternative (nonconventional) medicine, theosophy, belief in magic properties of quartz crystals, etc).
    (Chr: Occult, this is a relationship with dark forces, which are not of God. Christian Churches consider them harmful and affecting badly people. It is known, that under their influence personality of people gets damaged. They become arrogant, self-confident, christophobs (Christ haters), mean, haters  etc. After that it is very difficult for them to recover).
    (11) Cannot be Judgemental. As soon as somebody is critical of actions by New Agers, liberals, christophobes and similar to them, at once they are being attacked with pronouncement that one should not judge.
    (Chr: This idea New Agers took from Christianity, and twisted it to their own advantage. They are inclined very much against Christianity, but when needed, they are using its teaching for their own advantage. The Christian has to judge (evaluate) in order to understand what is good, and what is evil, in order to act correspondingly. But, Christian cannot condemn. This is a prerogative of the Lord God Himself. If the Christian has not right to judge evil, he cannot identify it, he is disarmed and cannot fight it, which is his sacred duty).
    (12) Ethnic Diversity. In their struggle (fight) against Christianity New Agers are using foreign nonwhite minorities under the pretext of "ethnic diversity". It is presented as something positive. Other countries are also being infected with this destructive idea.
    (Chr: The real reason behind this treason is that New Agers want to attract as many nonchristians (pagans), in order to dilute Christian majority of the country. Dechristianization of the country will slowly lead to the collapse of the state).

41.4 Terminology. Especially one should pay attention to terminology. Religions and various religious currents are using similar terminology, but they are quite different from each other. For instance word "spirituality" various religions understand it differently. Even Catholic "spirituality" is different from Orthodox. That is not all, even Bible is interpreted differently by Christians, Moslems, Jews, secularists, atheists and others.

41.5 Influence on Personality. New Age acts negatively on personality. Person is gradually reconstructed (rebuilt), goes into a different world and becomes paranoid, lives in an artificial (unreal) world. In English there is an expression "lives in a bubble" (lives in a special isolation tent for very sick patients).
    In New Age some followers worship universe (cosmos) and imagine themselves to be divine. The person develops supernatural capabilities, which leads him away from God. The first and the second affects people in a bad way and requires great effort to extract a person from negative consequences.
    It is being remembered a case when one lady high school teacher in the West, said "thanks unverse". This was instead of "Thanks God". This was said from the stage where she was making a professional presentation.

Conclusion. New Age followers are some of the main destroyers of Christian culture and civilization. They are promoting secularism and atheism in society. Former participants of a cultural revolution and their followers have flooded educational structures of the West and mass-media. They are trying to resist in every way Christianity and to expel it from schools and to replace with New Age cult. This thinking has filtered into many public and state organizations.
    Orthodoxy and other branches of Christianity disapprove of New Age and are warning of the big danger of spiritual self-deception to which adherents of New World subject themselves.

• Собор Александра Невского в Новосибирске: http://www.nevskiy.orthodoxy.ru/
• Википедия. Нью-эйдж: http://ru.wikipedia.org/
• Wikipedia. New Age: http://en.wikipedia.org/


42. Some Cults. [26июн08]
Due to decline of spirituality in the West and militant atheism and God battling regime in the East, all world experiences spiritual crisis. As a consequence of this crisis, there is occurrence of many cults in the West. With the fall of atheism in the East and freedom of religion, from the West came a wave of various religions, sects and cults, including forbidden ones in the West. In the postsoviet space many people fell under their influence. Orthodoxy is reviving, only gaining in strength and is doing what it can to resist this flood. Already there is a lot of printed literature and information on the Internet.
    There are many cults. In this section only few known cults are mentioned.

Seventh-day Adventism.

Witchcraft.

Johnstown, Peoples Temple.

Zen.

Polygamous Mormonism.

Heaven's Gate.

UFO Cults. UFO – Unidentified Flying Object.

New Paganism.

Scientology.

Christian Science.

Jehovah's Witness.

Spiritualism.

Transcendental Meditation.

Hare Krishna.

Unification Church. Sun Myung Moon Church.

• Википедия: http://ru.wikipedia.org/
• Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/
• Лучший труд, американского конверта в РПЦЗ, на тему культов в наше время.
Иеромонах Серафим (Роуз). Православие и религия будущего.
Есть в рунете, в Библиотека православного христианина "Благовещение": http://www.wco.ru/
Оригинал на английском языке: Father Seraphim (Rose). Orthodoxy and Religion of the Future. 1999. Saint Herman of Alaska Brotherhood, Platina, CA. 236 p., soft cover.


Conclusion. [17июл08]
In this brief review were described the religions and ideologies with which our children living in the West will have to meet, and a Christian view of them.

    Orthodox-Christian view at world religions and ideologies is such, that the true God is the God-Lover of Mankind, and, that He loves and cares of all people, including the most backward savages. His Providence directs all people towards good, truth, love, etc. One of His cares consists of that He gave all people, to each person conscience and a free will.
    Based on this inborn conscience, people created various religions, philosophies, ideologies, etc. Since their founders were not 100% irrational, in all these religions there is a share of truth. The full truth is only in Orthodox-Christian religion, religion revealed to us by the Lord God Himself.
    All religions are basically the belief in some deity, and prayers and sacrifices to it. More developed religions include also some code of behavior and a world outlook.

    Mankind loving Christianity appeared in the Near East, in the Western Europe and later in the Eastern Europe. It differs cardinally from all other religions as it was revealed by God. Other people, people in Asia, Africa, Australia and Ocenia received Christ teaching through contacts with Christian people and their missionaries. As a result of this, their teaching about life came closer to Christian, in any case they got rid off or covered up their dark sides.
    The mankind loving Christianity contains besides the understanding of the true God Lover of Mankind, a brotherly view of all people and a whole world. It gives a basis for understanding of a person, people and societies. It is a basis for all mutual relations. Besides this Christianity teaches what qualities should a person have and develop for a constructive life.
    The Christian teaching is the most deep of all religions and consequently it is uncomparable with other religions. During 2000 years some of its postulates seemed like paradoxes and had to be taken on faith, but now with the advent of sciences as medicine, psychology, physiology, etc. they become understandable and obvious.

    Western Christianity. The Catholic Church kept apostolic succession, but it made many changes and this way it moved away from Christian purity. But the most important, that blemishes them, is that Catholics kept old pagan sins which they unknowingly distribute worldwide. They continue to suffer form pride (arrogance), being chosen ones (избранностью), dominance (любоначалием), hypocrisy, aggression, xenophobia, russophobia, racism, etc. One small example of this, is that they do not consider Russian Orthodoxy high-grade and from long ago wish to subordinate it to themselves, that is to the Roman pope.
    In the Church itself there is a gradual secularization and big unrest. The present pope, Benedict XVI is trying to resist it. Despite of their great internal problems they continue to conduct hypocritical and aggressive policy against Russia.
    The Protestant world which separated from Catholic Church (1517), experiences the same problems, as the Church rejected by them. The Western Christianity has broken up into many groups and gave birth to many sects and cults. There are many semi and pseudo-Christian groups which in some way departed from the true teaching and are under the influence of secular world. They conduct their propaganda and unknowing person can easily fall into their trap.
    The Western Christianity in spiritual sense said everything, that it could and now it is deadlocked (impasse). Certainly it cannot be the spiritual guide in XXI century.

    Unbelief, Secularism and Atheism presents itself as a progress and freedom, but in reality they offer spiritual slavery to their program – the faith in "nongod". Wherever they can, they are destroying two thousand year old Christian culture and civilization. They do not control with old crude dictatorial methods, but with secret scheming and conniving and political correctness. This is in the West. In the East atheism has been tried with tragic results.
    Unbelief, Secularism and Atheism do not teach anything. They are cold, they criticize, deride, distort, are superficial and for the end of life they promise full disappearance from earth. They do not recognize a spiritual component in a person and are not capable of giving a spiritual direction to the world, particularly in XXI century.

    Religions of East Asia (Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucionism, etc.), are interesting since they are "natural religions" and have developed independently from common West-European culture. Later, under the influence of contact with the European Christian culture and Christian missionaries, realizing its truths, they slowly and gradually became christianized and adopted some Christian values.
    Religions thought up by one person, say Buddha or Confucius, 2000 years ago, cannot claim to have answers to solutions of problems of the society in XXI century.

    Orthodoxy. From all Christian groups, only Orthodoxy preserved apostolic succession and purity of the teaching. Most of all Christian truth was preserved in "ascetic Orthodoxy"[П5]. It contains everything necessary for salvation from sin: the teaching of Lord Jesus Christ, prayers, divine services, Commandments, the teaching of the Church, fast, sacraments, confession, communion, spiritual fathers, Sacred Scripture (Bible) and Tradition, literature of holy fathers, etc. This is not present in other religions. However, Catholics do have it, but not in such a quantity and as it was said above, they lost Christian spirit.
    Orthodox people do not suffer from pride (arrogance), being chosen ones (избранностью), dominance (любоначалием), hypocrisy, aggression, xenophobia, racism, etc. Their countries are not characterized by aggression, they always got along on with foreigners, natives (aboriginals) and non-Orthodox, and never started first a war.

    Russian Orthodoxy is unique. The Christianity come to Russia (988) when it was already fully formed (after VII Ecumenical Council, 787). All church disputes ended and it presented a spiritual stronghold. Besides this in Russia there was no well developed pagan culture which could resist it. As a result of this Russian culture, among world cultures, differs in that it is a daughter of Orthodoxy, and is penetrated and saturated with Orthodox ideology and outlook.

    XXI Century. Completing this review of religions, ideologies and outlooks in the beginning of XXI century and considering them in spiritual, religious, social, etc. context of the present world problems, one unexpectedly comes to a conclusion, that the only hope of the world for peace, is Orthodoxy. It is not aggressive, gets along with everybody, preaches humility, does not suffer with dominance (любоначалием) and xenophobia, etc. All this makes it the best candidate for spiritual leadership in XXI century.
    But, in this conclusion there is nothing new. Russian spiritual and secular thinkers for a long time spoke about this, this was also said by some thoughtful foreigners. So, only Orthodoxy can save the world from spiritual, moral and physical catastrophe.
    The solution of all personal, public, national, international and global problems lays in the correlation of the whole life with the Lord Jesus Christ Mankind Loving teaching.

Примечания
[П1] Этот короткий обзор был приготовлен для учеников церковно-приходской гимназии, ученики которой рано или поздно встретятся с разными религиями или неверием в своей жизни. Детям нужно дать короткое объяснение, в духе христианского человеколюбия, для правильного понимания реалий жизни. Если мы это не сделаем, то тогда, они эту информацию почерпают из местных секулярных, христофобских и русофобских источников.
    Этот материал является дополнением (приложением) к курсу История Христианской Церкви и История Русской Церкви, которые проходятся в IV и V классах гимназии.
[П2] Слова связанные с религиями после 1917 г. менялись. В этой работе автор придерживается названий которые существовали в России почти 1000 лет, то есть до государственных переворотов 1917 г. В скопках даются другие, скажем современные, и английские названия.
[П3] Некоторые места в этом обзоре были взяты из прошлых работ. Это сделано для того чтобы она была самостоятельная и законченная (stand by itself) и можно было бы ее читать независимо и без всяких ссылок на другие работы.
[П4] В некоторых местах когда правила новой (советской) орфографии не логичны, в таки случаях мы придерживаемся старого правописания. Например у нас «безъинтересно», а не «безынтересно» как полагается сейчас.
[П5]  Русская Православная Церковь Заграницей (РПЦЗ) или просто Зарубежная Церковь, одна из немногих Церквей которая сохраняет аскетическое (подвижническое) Православие. Теперешний отход Запада от христианских начал в жизни затронул и многие поместные Православные Церкви, и они стараются идти в ногу с временем. Христос же учил не идти в ногу с временем, а дал нам абсолютные ценности которые всегда правильны -- сегодня, завтра, вчера и даже после смерти. В аскетическом Православии подвиг является основной составляющей всей веры -- цель которого есть изменение человека к лучшему. Поэтому, в аскетическом Православии в церкви здоровые молящиеся стоят, а не сидят; богослужения и молитвы не сокращаются; вечерние службы не сокращаются и не отменяются; соблюдаются посты по церковному уставу; есть исповедь один на один со священником, а не общая; причастие не дается без исповеди; священники носят бороду и не бреются, и ходят в рясе а не в костюмах; и т.д. и т.п.
    Аскетизм. «Понятием этим вовсе не предрешается строй нашей жизни, и само по себе оно не включает в себя ни девства, ни постов, ни отшельничества. Аскетизмом, или духовным подвижничеством, называется жизнь, исполненная работы над собой, такая жизнь, целью которой является уничтожение своих страстей: блуда, самолюбия, злобы, зависти, объядения, лености и пр. и наполнение души духом целомудрия, смиренномудрия, терпения и любви, которая никогда не бывает одинокой добродетелью, а лишь спутницей и совершительницей перечисленных свойств души». [Митрополит Антоний (Храповицкий) (ДД-16.3р)], (ДД-43).



Литература на рунете.
• Благотворное влияние христианства: (ДД-06)
• Благотворное влияние христианства. Примечания: (ДД-06.12)
• Христианство спасло человечество от гибели: (ДД-06.13)
• Что такое Катихизис: (ДД-09)
• История Христианской Церкви. Обзор: (ДД-13)
• Введение в Историю Христианской Церкви. Краткий обзор: (ДД-13.3)
• Истоки разницы между Западной и Русской Церквами. Русское Православие: (ДД-13.7)
• История Русской Церкви. Краткие обзоры: (ДД-14)
• Православие и протестантизм: (ДД-16)
• Православие и Католицизм: (ДД-16.6)
• О Православии и Католичестве (И.А.Ильин): (ДД-16.9р)
• Жизнь Господа Иисуса Христа (по Темномерову): (ДД-21.1)
• Чудеса Господа Иисуса Христа (по Темномерову): (ДД-21.2)
• Притчи Господа Иисуса Христа (по Темномерову): (ДД-21.3)
• Учение Господа Иисуса Христа (по Темномерову): (ДД-21.4)
• Что такое гордыня? (ДД-45)
• Внутренний мир гордого человека: (ДД-45.5)
• Закон Божий (прот. С. Слободской): (ДД-55р)
• Закон Божий (Прот. Аполлоний Темномеров. 1907 г.): (ДД-55.3р)
• Нравоучение (по мит.Филарету): (ДД-64.5)
• История Христианской Православной Церкви (Протоиерей П.Смирнов. 1903 г.): (ДД-68)
• Некролог епископа Александра (Милеант): (ДД-72)
• Записки о Марксизме: (ДД-75)
• Список работ на тему неверия и атеизма: Неверие на нашем сайте
• Обзор книги: Уникальность христианства. Динеш Де'Суза: (ДД-79)
• Крайне-либеральная культурная революция: (ЗЗ-12)

• Миссионерские листки епископа Александра (Милеант): http://www.fatheralexander.org/
• Православная Апологетика (Религии и секты): http://apologet.narod.ru
• История религии: http://religion.babr.ru/   (Очень подробный обзор всех религий. Автор Дмитрий Таевский, русский буддист, чувствуется влияние атеизма, кажется живет в Иркутске).
• Открытая православная энциклопедия: http://drevo.pravbeseda.ru/
• Атеизму нет: http://www.ateismy.net/
• Википедия. Индуизм: http://ru.wikipedia.org/
• Wikipedia. Hinduism: http://en.wikipedia.org/
• Античное христианство: http://christianity.shu.ru/
• Христианизация древнего мира. М.М.Казаков: http://mkaz.shu.ru/
• Миссионерский информационный портал: http://mission-center.com/
• Number of adherents of various religions: http://www.adherents.com/

• Энциклопедия Кругосвет: http://www.krugosvet.ru/
• Мировые религии: http://schools.keldysh.ru/
• Свято-Троицкая Православная Школа (еп.Александр (Милеант): http://www.holytrinitymission.org/
• Catechism of Catholic Church: http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc.htm]
• 33,000 Protestant Denominations: http://www.bringyou.to/apologetics/a106.htm
• Собор Александра Невского в Новосибирске: http://www.nevskiy.orthodoxy.ru
• Имам.Ру: http://www.imam.ru/
• Number of Muslims in various countries: http://islamicweb.com/
• Доклад епископа Илариона 30 мая 2008 г. в Вене: http://www.rusk.ru/
• А.М.Рассказов. Религия и культ: http://azbyka.ru/
• Лучший труд, американского конверта в РПЦЗ, на тему культов в наше время. Иеромонах Серафим (Роуз). Православие и религия будущего.
Есть в рунете, в Библиотека православного христианина "Благовещение": http://www.wco.ru/
• Индия. Семья и каста: http://www.ice-nut.ru/
• Атеизму нет: http://www.ateismy.net/
• The Atheist Manifesto: http://www.4degreez.com/

Библиография.
• James A. Beverley. Religions A to Z. A Guide to 100 influential religious Movements. 2005. Thomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, Tennessee. 276 p., soft cover. $12.99.
• Dean C. Halverson, General Editor. The Compact Guide to World Religions. 1996. Bethany House Publishers, Bloomington, Minnesota. 272 p., soft cover. $12.99.
• Лучший труд, американского конверта в РПЦЗ, на тему культов в наше время.
Иеромонах Серафим (Роуз). Православие и религия будущего.
Есть в рунете, в Библиотека православного христианина "Благовещение": http://www.wco.ru/
Оригинал на английском языке: Father Seraphim (Rose). Orthodoxy and Religion of the Future. 1999. Saint Herman of Alaska Brotherhood, Platina, CA. 236 p., soft cover.
• Много информации есть в книге Гонение (на христиан) Давида Лимбо. David Limbaugh. Persecution. Hardcover, 2003, Regnery Publishing, Washington, DC. Perennial (YarperCollins), New York, NY.

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