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Solzhenitsyn's 1978 Prophetic Warning to America ^ | 08-06-18 | Bill Randles

Posted on 08/06/2018 2:01:56 PM PDT by pastorbillrandles

By: Pastor Bill Randles

”“Wisdom cries out loud in the streets, she raises her voice in the squares…” Proverbs 1:20

Harvard’s motto is “Veritas”. Many of you have already found out, and others will find out in the course of their lives, that truth eludes us if we do not concentrate our attention totally on its pursuit. But even while it eludes us, the illusion of knowing it still lingers and leads to many misunderstandings. (From Solzhenitsyn’s 1978 Harvard address “A World Split Apart”)

Alexander Solzhenitsyn, a Nobel Prize winning author, Soviet dissident and a survivor of an eight year sentence in the brutal Soviet Gulag system, passed away on August 4th, 2005 in Russia. The author and famous dissident had been exiled from his homeland for his writings in 1974, and lived in Vermont until 1994 when he was able to return to Russia.

His passing is being largely noted because he was useful in exposing to the outside world the brutality and suppression of the Soviet system, through novels based upon his own experiences in the Gulags, such as “A DAY IN THE LIFE OF IVAN DENISOVICH”, and “CANCER WARD”. His non-fiction expose, “THE GULAG ARCHIPILAGO” had to be smuggled out of the USSR and published first in France. It was this particular book which led to his banishment from Russia.

What will perhaps not be as appreciated as it should be is the fact that Solzhenitsyn used the occasion of a Harvard Laureate Award in 1978 to offer a warning to the West that was both stinging and timely. Unfortunately the warning largely went unreceived, as always “A prophet is without honor …”. The speech, “A World Split Apart” created a firestorm of controversy, warning the West of its spiritual emptiness and blindness.

President Carter snubbed him, his wife Rosalyn repudiated the speech at the National Press Club, and there were editorials in the New York Times and the Washington Post, among others, which railed against the speech.

What did he say that caused him to go from a ‘cause celebre’ to almost a pariah? Among other things, he called us on our failure of “civil courage”,

A decline in courage may be the most striking feature, which an outside observer notices in the West in our days. The Western world has lost its civil courage, both as a whole and separately, in each country, each government, each political party, and, of course, in the United Nations. Such a decline in courage is particularly noticeable among the ruling groups and the intellectual elite, causing an impression of loss of courage by the entire society. Of course, there are many courageous individuals, but they have no determining influence on public life. (“A WORLD SPLIT APART”)

He warned us that we were losing the courage to defend our own civilization, that especially among our leadership, self serving calculation was taking the place of real conviction and that the outcome would be devastating. Solzhenitsyn warns us,

Should one point out that from ancient times declining courage has been considered the beginning of the end? (ibid)

Solzhenitsyn then offered us a diagnosis as to what happened to make us lose courage – the false belief that individual freedom would guarantee happiness – as in “The Pursuit of Happiness”, although he warns us that the meaning of word ‘happiness’ has been debased lately –

Every citizen has been granted the desired freedom and material goods in such quantity and of such quality as to guarantee in theory the achievement of happiness — in the morally inferior sense of the word which has come into being during those same decades. (ibid)

Freedom without restraint has not given us ‘happiness’. In fact, Solzhenitsyn charged that such ‘freedom’ is the cause of much of the depression and disillusionment that characterizes western society.

Ironically, on top of the rebuttal of our concept of freedom, he accused us of becoming a hyper legalistic society. See if this doesn’t speak to the situation as it stands today-

People in the West have acquired considerable skill in interpreting and manipulating law. Any conflict is solved according to the letter of the law and this is considered to be the supreme solution. If one is right from a legal point of view, nothing more is required. Nobody will mention that one could still not be entirely right, and urge self-restraint, a willingness to renounce such legal rights, sacrifice and selfless risk. It would sound simply absurd. One almost never sees voluntary self-restraint. Everybody operates at the extreme limit of those legal frames. (ibid)

It is this “skill” at the use of the letter of the law in the very face of the ‘spirit’ of the law that has developed into the “Death of Common Sense” as the title of a book written by a Federal Judge decries. How else is it that the enemies of our civilization have even a prayer of destroying us, other than through our courts, and the very ‘legalistic spirit’ our friend Solzhenitsyn warned us of? On this point he rightly concludes that such use of legalism will lead to two evils – the paralysis of true leadership and the inability to resist societal evil.

Destructive and irresponsible freedom has been granted boundless space. Society appears to have little defense against the abyss of human decadence, such as, for example, misuse of liberty for moral violence against young people, such as motion pictures full of pornography, crime, and horror. It is considered to be part of freedom and theoretically counterbalanced by the young people’s right not to look or not to accept. Life organized legalistically has thus shown its inability to defend itself against the corrosion of evil. (ibid)

We didn’t have to wait very long to see the words of this prophecy come to pass – within ten years of Solzhenitsyn’s Harvard address, President Reagan’s Counsel on Pornography failed to even be able to agree on a definition of pornography. Do “we the people” really want pornography, gay marriage, abortion or Sharia law? Absolutely not, but unfortunately for us the pornographers, Sodomites, Eugenicists and CAIR are all able to successfully employ legal counsel, in a legalistic system to impose their will to the devastation of our society! Exactly what Alexander Solzhenitsyn warned us of in 1978.

Perhaps it was his critique of our flawed analysis of human nature that stung us the most, our humanism leads us to deny the effects of the fall. Therefore freedom without corresponding sense of responsibility to the spirit tilts towards evil.

Such a tilt of freedom in the direction of evil has come about gradually, but it was evidently born primarily out of a humanistic and benevolent concept according to which there is no evil inherent to human nature. The world belongs to mankind and all the defects of life are caused by wrong social systems, which must be corrected. (ibid)

No wonder he was so ill received! He was “messing with our religion” of a humanistic Utopian “Brave New World”.

I have no doubt he was rejected largely because he diagnosed our problem as being the same problem the Russian people suffered from, Humanism!

There is a disaster, however, which has already been under way for quite some time. I am referring to the calamity of a despiritualized and irreligious humanistic consciousness. To such consciousness, man is the touchstone in judging everything on earth — imperfect man, who is never free of pride, self-interest, envy, vanity, and dozens of other defects. We are now experiencing the consequences of mistakes which had not been noticed at the beginning of the journey (ibid)

I am in danger of reposting the entire speech to you but my commentary really doesn’t do it justice – read it yourself at A World Split Apart and realize that we were officially warned thirty years ago, and for the most part have failed to heed the warning which has been validated by history point by point.

The solution? Solzhenitsyn calls us to nothing short of spiritual renewal, a return to the “Christian roots” of our humanism and a rejection of the “ossified “ dogmas of the Enlightenment. Almost anticipating the current Islamic Jihad, he warned us that without spiritual renewal, the humanistic and Godless west would be rendered “unable to resist the East”.

No doubt another thing that Solzhentsyn sensed was the germination of the same atheistic , leftist spirit which all but ruined Russia, taking root and advancing here. America of 1974 was a very different place from the America we now live in, but this man could see where the trends of thought and philosophy nurtured by our elite were taking us.

Rest in peace Alexander Solzhenitsyn. You warned us.

TOPICS: Catholic; Charismatic Christian; Evangelical Christian; Theology; Worship
KEYWORDS: catholic; fredom; morality; religioncommunism; solzhenitsyn; ussr
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1 posted on 08/06/2018 2:01:56 PM PDT by pastorbillrandles
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To: pastorbillrandles

Jehovah speaks!

2 posted on 08/06/2018 2:11:07 PM PDT by miss marmelstein
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To: pastorbillrandles

Will never forget how enraged the audience at Harvard became when he spoke those words. It was as if someone was dripping acid directly into their brains. Their behavior no doubt inspired the famous dictum a few years later that “you can’t handle the truth”. Today those same people and their ilk can’t even handle listening to an alternative argument that does not fit their narrative. Solzentsn was a man of great physical and intellectual courage. He fought the Nazis, loved Russia and its cultural heritage, spoke the truth to the Party bosses and even earned their respect and admiration. Pity that his books are not read by young Americans who sadly are embracing the decadence of those Harvard fools.

3 posted on 08/06/2018 2:14:25 PM PDT by allendale (.)
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To: allendale

You are correct. Gulag Archipelago should be required reading in high school.

4 posted on 08/06/2018 2:19:57 PM PDT by microgood
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To: allendale

You are correct. Gulag Archipelago should be required reading in high school.

5 posted on 08/06/2018 2:21:00 PM PDT by microgood
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To: pastorbillrandles

Later for SURE

6 posted on 08/06/2018 2:23:59 PM PDT by gaijin
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To: miss marmelstein

My God, Solzhenitsyn spoke way back in 1978.

What would he have to say today???

7 posted on 08/06/2018 2:43:49 PM PDT by PGR88
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To: pastorbillrandles

“First Circle” is one of the greatest books I have ever read, and that is a lot. AS rates up with Dickens, Austin, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky and Melville for insight into our souls.

He watched as Russia went through the Holocaust of Communism.

Dostoevsky pointed to the same human depravity as being the source of our problems. It doesn’t matter how society is organized it cannot overcome this flaw in humanity.

I just finished “The Devils” (”Demons” or “The Possessed”) which examines these themes in Russia around 1865. He traced all the Evil of those times to Westernizing influences that at their root were atheistic. Within this hothouse Nihilism got its foothold.

The Ruling Class had turned against the society it profited from and no longer had faith in it or anything associated with it. Russians of that time were Nuts in about every direction.

Bureaucratization was a major reason for the collapse of the Roman Empire. Its citizens were so weak they could not even preserve its army, formerly the greatest in the world, and had to hire barbarians to be the Empire’s military.

Czarist Russia was a madhouse run by an idiotic system and under the Soviets it was worse. There was no real law there, everything was arbitrary.

8 posted on 08/06/2018 2:52:14 PM PDT by arrogantsob (See "Chaos and Mayhem" at
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To: pastorbillrandles

Pastor Bill,

Thanks for posting this. It’s a good summary of key points in the speech.

Listening to Jordan Peterson by podcast these days I have heard him mention the Gulag as a very important book. And we must be sure to keep Solzenitsyn’s wisdom alive in our times.

There’s great power in the content of this speech. However, as I’m sure you noticed as you studied the speech, Solzhenitsyn’s text is academic, cumbersome to read, and doesn’t flow well to the average American’s ear.

So when I have some spare time, I thought I might try editing the speech somewhat.

What say ye to that idea?

9 posted on 08/06/2018 2:54:04 PM PDT by poconopundit (MAGA... Get the Spirit. Grow your community. Focus on your Life's Work. Empower the Young.)
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To: microgood

Nothing like high hopes. Getting these kids through “Hard Times” or “A Tale of Two Cities” would be a miracle. They couldn’t get halfway through GA. “A Day....” might be their speed.

10 posted on 08/06/2018 2:57:44 PM PDT by arrogantsob (See "Chaos and Mayhem" at
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To: PGR88

He would not and say: I predicted it all.

11 posted on 08/06/2018 3:00:40 PM PDT by miss marmelstein
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To: poconopundit; All

Solzhenitsyn is the greatest novelist of the 20th century even more so than Faulkner.

12 posted on 08/06/2018 3:01:31 PM PDT by arrogantsob (See "Chaos and Mayhem" at
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To: poconopundit

Might need a better translation.

13 posted on 08/06/2018 3:01:44 PM PDT by miss marmelstein
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To: miss marmelstein

Let me try that again: he would nod and say: I predicted it all.

14 posted on 08/06/2018 3:02:47 PM PDT by miss marmelstein
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To: poconopundit

good idea. The speech is too powerful to go down the memory hole!

15 posted on 08/06/2018 3:05:08 PM PDT by pastorbillrandles (ore and rebuild Jerusale)
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To: pastorbillrandles; Liz; governsleastgovernsbest
People in the West have acquired considerable skill in interpreting and manipulating law. Any conflict is solved according to the letter of the law and this is considered to be the supreme solution. If one is right from a legal point of view, nothing more is required. Alexander Solzhenitsyn

Solzhenitsyn's right - this explains how Deep State denizens can 'give speeches' for half a million and NOT see it for what it is - a bribe.

Yes, Bill Clinton accepted a bribe from Russia. They knew it, the folks in flyover knew it, and most of the world knew it. Washington DC didn't because Bill Clinton wore red socks, turned toward the west 5 times while whistling "Dixie" backwards.... (Letter of the Law BS)

It also explains why the FBI and DOJ who should be freaking out about Hillary selling 20% of our uranium for obvious bribes don't appear to care.. THE DEEP STATE HAS MOVED "LETTER OF THE LAW" INTO THE REALM OF ACCEPTANCE OF CRIMINAL ACTIVITY IF SILLY DOTS ARE DOTTED AND TWISTED TEES CROSSED.

It why the people in flyover are screaming 'LOCK HER UP' and the FBI is yawning. Solzhenitsyn - as always - gets it.

16 posted on 08/06/2018 3:24:05 PM PDT by GOPJ ( New York Times: Printed by liberal elitists for the benefit of liberal elitists ONLY.)
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This was the Halfrican's plan from the getgo.

Every focus-grouped campaign slogan known to man came out of his mouth to dupe the electorate.

Can you believe?......the half-caste ding-dong even said, "I want to be another Reagan."

It'll take awhile....we are still digging out from the monstrous pile of hate-American dirt he bequeathed us.

17 posted on 08/06/2018 3:31:15 PM PDT by Liz ( Our side has 8 trillion bullets; the other side doesn't know which bathroom to
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Mike Gallagher, the 8th most recognized talk radio personality in the U.S.A. compiled and wrote the following essay.

It was you who spoke these words at an Islamic dinner -”I am one of you.”

It was you who on ABC News referenced -”My Muslim faith.”

It was you who gave $100 million in U.S. taxpayer funds to re-build foreign mosques.

It was you who wrote that in the event of a conflict-”I will stand with the Muslims.”

It was you who assured the Egyptian Foreign Minister that, “I am a Muslim.”

It was you who bowed in submission before the Saudi King.

It was you who sat for 20 years in a Liberation Theology Church condemning Christianity and professing Marxism.

It was you who exempted Muslims from penalties under Obamacare that the rest of us have to pay.

It was you who purposefully omitted - “endowed by our Creator “ - from your recitation of The Declaration Of Independence.

It was you who mocked the Bible and Jesus Christ’s Sermon On The Mount while repeatedly referring to the ‘HOLY’ Qur’an.

It was you who traveled the Islamic world denigrating the United States Of America.

It was you who instantly threw the support of your administration behind the building of the Ground Zero Victory mosque overlooking the hallowed crater of the World Trade Center.

It was you who refused to attend the National Prayer Breakfast, but hastened to host an Islamic prayer breakfast at the White House.

It was you who ordered Georgetown Univ. and Notre Dame to shroud all vestiges of Jesus Christ BEFORE you would agree to go there to speak, but in contrast, you have NEVER requested the mosques you have visited to adjust their decor.

It was you who appointed anti-Christian fanatics to your Czar Corps.

It was you who appointed rabid Islamists to Homeland Security.

It was you who said that NASA’s “foremost mission” was an outreach to Muslim communities.

It was you who as an Illinois Senator was the ONLY individual who would speak in favor of infanticide.

It was you who was the first President not to give a Christmas Greeting from the White House, and went so far as to hang photos of Chairman Mao on the White House tree.

It was you who curtailed the military tribunals of all Islamic terrorists.

It was you who refused to condemn the Ft. Hood killer as an Islamic terrorist.

It is you who has refused to speak-out concerning the horrific executions of women throughout the Muslim culture, but yet, have submitted Arizona to the UN for investigation of hypothetical human-rights abuses.

It was you who when queried in India refused to acknowledge the true extent of radical global Jihadists, and instead profusely praised Islam in a country that is 82% Hindu and the victim of numerous Islamic terrorists assaults.

It was you who funneled $900 Million in U.S. taxpayer dollars to Hamas.

It was you who ordered the United States Postal Service to honor the MUSLIM holiday with a new commemorative stamp.

It was you who directed our UK Embassy to conduct outreach to help “empower” the British Muslim community.

It was you who funded mandatory Arabic language and culture studies in Grammar schools across our country.

It is you who follows the Muslim custom of not wearing any form of jewelry during Ramadan.

It is you who departs for Hawaii over the Christmas season so as to avoid past criticism for NOT participating in seasonal White House religious events.

It was you who was uncharacteristically quick to join the chorus of the Muslim Brotherhood to depose Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak, formerly America’s strongest ally in North Africa; but, remain muted in your non-response to the Brotherhood led slaughter of Egyptian Christians.

It was you who appointed your chief adviser, Valerie Jarrett, an Iranian, who is a member of the Muslim Sisterhood, an off-shoot of the Muslim Brotherhood.

It was you who said this country is not a Christian nation.

18 posted on 08/06/2018 3:33:43 PM PDT by Liz ( Our side has 8 trillion bullets; the other side doesn't know which bathroom to
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To: Liz

What a Great and Historical post!

19 posted on 08/06/2018 4:49:26 PM PDT by Pagey (8 years of MISERY, Thanks to Valerie Jarrett. Wretched human.)
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To: call meVeronica

Bump for later

20 posted on 08/06/2018 7:34:52 PM PDT by call meVeronica
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