Emma Watson Pussy
War And Peace
victory over vice.
This aim was that of Christianity itself. It taught men to be wise and
good and for their own benefit to follow the example and instruction
of the best and wisest men.
"At that time, when everything was plunged in darkness, preaching
alone was of course sufficient. The novelty of Truth endowed her
with special strength, but now we need much more powerful methods.
It is now necessary that man, governed by his senses, should find in
virtue a charm palpable to those senses. It is impossible to eradicate
the passions; but we must strive to direct them to a noble aim, and it
is therefore necessary that everyone should be able to satisfy his
passions within the limits of virtue. Our order should provide means
to that end.
"As soon as we have a certain number of worthy men in every state,
each of them again training two others and all being closely united,
everything will be possible for our order, which has already in secret
accomplished much for the welfare of mankind."
This speech not only made a strong impression, but created
excitement in the lodge. The majority of the Brothers, seeing in it
dangerous designs of Illuminism,* met it with a coldness that
surprised Pierre. The Grand Master began answering him, and Pierre
began developing his views with more and more warmth. It was long
since there had been so stormy a meeting. Parties were formed, some
accusing Pierre of Illuminism, others supporting him. At that
meeting he was struck for the first time by the endless variety of
mens minds, which prevents a truth from ever presenting itself
identically to two persons. Even those members who seemed to be on his
side understood him in their own way with limitations and
alterations he could not agree to, as what he always wanted most was
to convey his thought to others just as he himself understood it.
*The Illuminati sought to substitute republican for monarchical
At the end of the meeting the Grand Master with irony and ill-will
reproved Bezukhov for his vehemence and said it was not love of virtue
alone, but also a love of strife that had moved him in the dispute.
Pierre did not answer him and asked briefly whether his proposal would
be accepted. He was told that it would not, and without waiting for
the usual formalities he left the lodge and went home.
Again Pierre was overtaken by the depression he so dreaded. For
three days after the delivery of his speech at the lodge he lay on a
sofa at home receiving no one and going nowhere.
It was just then that he received a letter from his wife, who
implored him to see her, telling him how grieved she was about him and
how she wished to devote her whole life to him.
At the end of the letter she informed him that in a few days she
would return to Petersburg from abroad.
Following this letter one of the Masonic Brothers whom Pierre
respected less than the others forced his way in to see him and,
turning the conversation upon Pierres matrimonial affairs, by way
of fraternal advice expressed the opinion that his severity to his
wife was wrong and that he was neglecting one of the first rules of
Freemasonry by not forgiving the penitent.
At the same time his mother-in-law, Prince Vasilis wife, sent to
him imploring him to come if only for a few minutes to discuss a
most important matter. Pierre saw that there was a conspiracy
against him and that they wanted to reunite him with his wife, and
in the mood he then was, this was not even unpleasant to him.
Nothing mattered to him. Nothing in life seemed to him of much
importance, and under the influence of the depression that possessed
him he valued neither his liberty nor his resolution to punish his
"No one is right and no one is to blame; so she too is not to
blame," he thought.
If he did not at once give his consent to a reunion with his wife,
it was only because in his state of depression he did not feel able to
take any step. Had his wife come to him, he would not have turned
her away. Compared to what preoccupied him, was it not a matter of
indifference whether he lived with his wife or not?
Without replying either to his wife or his mother-in-law, Pierre
late one night prepared for a journey and started for Moscow to see
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