Wednesday, August 17, 2011

"The Grand Inquisitor" (from The Brothers Karamazov) by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

The Brothers Karamazov (by Fyodor Dostoyevsky) - the Kindle edition.
  •          "And blind faith remained alone To lull the trusting heart"
  • "vague and undefined promise of freedom, which men, dull and unruly as they are by nature, are unable so much as to understand"
  • "never was there anything more unbearable to the human race than personal freedom!"
  • "where is there freedom of choice where men are bribed with bread?"
  • "Feed us first and then command us to be virtuous!" will be the words written upon the banner"

  • "There exists no greater or more painful anxiety for a man who has freed himself from all religious bias, than how he shall soonest find a new object or idea to worship."
  • "For the mystery of human being does not solely rest in the desire to live, but in the problem--for what should one live at all?"
  • "Nothing seems more seductive in his eyes than freedom of conscience, and nothing proves more painful."
  • "There are three Powers, three unique Forces upon earth, capable of conquering for ever by charming the conscience of these weak rebels--men--for their own good; and these Forces are: Miracle, Mystery and Authority."
  • "Is human nature calculated to reject miracle, and trust, during the most terrible moments in life, when the most momentous, painful and perplexing problems struggle within man's soul, to the free decisions of his heart for the true solution?"
  • "the present fate of men may be summed up in three words: Unrest, Confusion, Misery!"
  • "And why should the weakest be held guilty for not being able to endure what the strongest have endured? Why should a soul incapable of containing such terrible gifts be punished for its weakness?"
  • "And men rejoiced at finding themselves led once more like a herd of cattle"
  • "Humanity as a whole has ever aspired to unite itself universally."
  • "some of them--more rebellious and ferocious than the rest--will destroy themselves; others--rebellious but weak --will destroy each other; while the remainder, weak, helpless and miserable, will crawl back to our feet and cry"
  • "We will give them that quiet, humble happiness, which alone benefits such weak, foolish creatures as they are, and having once had proved to them their weakness, they will become timid and obedient, and gather around us as chickens around their hen."
  • "They will wonder at and feel a superstitious admiration for us, and feel proud to be led by men so powerful and wise that a handful of them can subject a flock a thousand millions strong. Gradually men will begin to fear us. They will nervously dread our slightest anger, their intellects will weaken, their eyes become as easily accessible to tears as those of children and women; but we will teach them an easy transition from grief and tears to laughter, childish joy and mirthful song."
  • "deliver them from their greatest anxiety and torture--that of having to decide freely for themselves"
  • "But I awoke from my delusion and refused since then to serve insanity."
  • "I left the proud and returned to the really humble"
  • "half-finished samples of humanity created in mockery"
  • " . . . And so it is; it cannot be otherwise."
  • "better words of bitterness and scorn . . .  His silence"

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