Emma Watson Pussy
War And Peace
struck by the passive, weary incredulity with
which the children heard what their mother said to them. They
were simply annoyed that their amusing play had been interrupted,
and did not believe a word of what their mother was saying. They
could not believe it indeed, for they could not take in the
immensity of all they habitually enjoyed, and so could not
conceive that what they were destroying was the very thing they
"That all comes of itself," they thought, "and theres nothing
interesting or important about it because it has always been so,
and always will be so. And its all always the same. Weve no
need to think about that, its all ready. But we want to invent
something of our own, and new. So we thought of putting
raspberries in a cup, and cooking them over a candle, and
squirting milk straight into each others mouths. Thats fun,
and something new, and not a bit worse than drinking out of
"Isnt it just the same that we do, that I did, searching by the
aid of reason for the significance of the forces of nature and
the meaning of the life of man?" he thought.
"And dont all the theories of philosophy do the same, trying by
the path of thought, which is strange and not natural to man, to
bring him to a knowledge of what he has known long ago, and knows
so certainly that he could not live at all without it? Isnt it
distinctly to be seen in the development of each philosophers
theory, that he knows what is the chief significance of life
beforehand, just as positively as the peasant Fyodor, and not a
bit more clearly than he, and is simply trying by a dubious
intellectual path to come back to what everyone knows?
"Now then, leave the children to themselves to get things alone
and make their crockery, get the milk from the cows, and so on.
Would they be naughty then? Why, theyd die of hunger! Well,
then, leave us with our passions and thoughts, without any idea
of the one God, of the Creator, or without any idea of what is
right, without any idea of moral evil.
"Just try and build up anything without those ideas!
"We only try to destroy them, because were spiritually provided
for. Exactly like the children!
"Whence have I that joyful knowledge, shared with the peasant,
that alone gives peace to my soul? Whence did I get it?
"Brought up with an idea of God, a Christian, my whole life
filled with the spiritual blessings Christianity has given me,
full of them, and living on those blessings, like the children I
did not understand them, and destroy, that is try to destroy,
what I live by. And as soon as an important moment of life
comes, like the children when they are cold and hungry, I turn to
Him, and even less than the children when their mother scolds
them for their childish mischief, do I feel that my childish
efforts at wanton madness are reckoned against me.
"Yes, what I know, I know not by reason, but it has been given to
me, revealed to me, and I know it with my heart, by faith in the
chief thing taught by the church.
"The church! the church!" Levin repeated to himself. He turned
over on the other side, and leaning on his elbow, fell to gazing
into the distance at a herd of cattle crossing over to the river.
"But can I believe in all the church teaches?" he thought, trying
himself, and thinking of everything that could destroy his
present peace of mind. Intentionally he recalled all those
doctrines of the church which had always seemed most strange and
had always been a stumbling block to him.
"The Creation? But how did I explain existence? By existence?
By nothing? The devil and sin. But how do I explain evil?...
"But I know nothing, nothing, and I can know nothing but what has
been told to me and all men."
And it seemed to him that there was not a single article of faith
of the church which could destroy the chief thing--faith in God,
in goodness, as the one goal of mans destiny.
Under every article of faith of the church could be put the faith
in the service of truth instead of ones desires. And each
doctrine did not simply leave that faith
Anna Karenina page 455 Anna Karenina page 457