Tolstoyan


Tolstoyan

The adjective Tolstoyan (also spelled Tolstoian)refers to the author Leo Tolstoy.

The Tolstoyans (Толстовцы, Tolstovtsy) follow the religious views expressed by Leo Tolstoy (1828 - 1910), the internationally-famed Russian novelist. Tolstoy's views were formed by rigorous study of the Gospel teachings of Jesus Christ, particularly, The Sermon on the Mount. The Tolstoyans' founder was Tolstoy's closest friend and confidant, Vladimir Chertkov (1854-1936).

They are nominally Christians, though in a departure from mainstream Christianity, the Tolstoyans tend to focus more on the teachings of Jesus as a spiritually-guided human being rather than as the Son of God.

They do not participate in, or concern themselves with, governmental and worldly affairs, which the Tolstoyans considered as immoral and corrupt. Thus, they may be technically described as anarchists, though they do not claim that title. Many now regard them as Christian anarchists because they recognize God as their only authority. Historically Tolstoy's ideas have had some influence on anarchist thought.

They are considered Christian pacifists and advocate absolute nonresistance in all circumstances rather than self-defense. They base this belief on Christ's commandments to, "resist not evil," "love thy enemy," and, "turn the other cheek." Interestingly enough, this was the same strategy to conflict resolution that in India, Mohandas Gandhi, shared but referred to it as nonviolence or ahimsa. Because of their beliefs, the Tolstoyans adhere to either a vegetarian or a vegan diet.

The early Tolstoyans had problems with the Tsarist regimes, and even more so with the Bolshevik ones. By 1930, many Tolstoyans had to relocate to Siberiato avoid being liquidated as kulaks, but Stalin's police nevertheless arrested them and sent them to labor camps from 1936 to 1939.

ee also

* Leo Tolstoy
* "The Kingdom of God is Within You"
* Christian anarchism
* Christian pacifism
* Life and Labor Commune

External links

* [http://www2.h-net.msu.edu/reviews/showrev.cgi?path=26947846532999 Review of "Memoirs of Peasant Tolstoyans in Soviet Russia.", William Edgerton, ed.]
* [http://www.fredsakademiet.dk/library/tolstoj/tolstoy.htm Tolstoy's Legacy for Mankind: A Manifesto for Nonviolence, Part 1]
* [http://www.fredsakademiet.dk/library/tolstoj/tolstoy2.htm#contents Tolstoy's Legacy for Mankind: A Manifesto for Nonviolence, Part 2]


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  • Tolstoyan — Tol*stoy an, Tolstoian Tol*stoi an, a. Of or pertaining to Tolstoy (1828 1910). n. A follower of Tolstoy, who advocates and practices manual labor, simplicity of living, nonresistance, etc., holds that possession of wealth and ownership of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Tolstoyan — adjective Of, or related to, , the Russian writer. This essay will look first at Gandhis knowledge of Tolstoy and proceed to the persons, organizations, and books that enlarged and enriched Gandhis knowledge of Tolstoyan values …   Wiktionary

  • Tolstoyan — adjective see Tolstoy …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Tolstoyan — See Tolstoy, Count Leo. * * * …   Universalium

  • tolstoyan — tol·stoy·an …   English syllables

  • tolstoyan — …   Useful english dictionary

  • Tolstoian — Tolstoyan Tol*stoy an, Tolstoian Tol*stoi an, a. Of or pertaining to Tolstoy (1828 1910). n. A follower of Tolstoy, who advocates and practices manual labor, simplicity of living, nonresistance, etc., holds that possession of wealth and ownership …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Tolstoy — Tolstoyan, Tolstoian, adj., n. Tolstoyism, n. Tolstoyist, n. /tohl stoy, tol /; Russ. /tul stoy /, n. Leo or Lev Nikolaevich /lev nik euh luy euh vich /; Russ. /lyef nyi ku lah yi vyich/ …   Universalium

  • Life and Labor Commune — The Life and Labor Commune was a Tolstoyan agricultural commune founded in 1921 and disbanded as a state run collective farm in 1937. The commune was founded near Moscow but was later resettled on the outskirts of Siberia. Throughout its… …   Wikipedia

  • Aylmer and Louise Maude — Aylmer Maude (28 March1858 ndash; 25 August1938) and Louise Maude (1855 ndash;1939) were English translators of Tolstoy s work, and Aylmer Maude also wrote his friend Tolstoy s biography. After living many years in Russia the Maudes spent the… …   Wikipedia


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