Scene from the 1988 film, Heart of a Dog.
What Would Happen if Sharikov Put on a Ryassa?
Christ is in Our Midst!
I think that many of you have seen the movie, “Heart of a Dog”. It’s very rare that a film adaptation helps you understand the original work it’s based upon, but this is precisely such an example. The subtle satire on soviet life reaches far beyond its historical time frame to become a certain exposé of any absurdity.
When the pituitary gland of Klim Chugunchina, a debauched drunkard who died in a brawl, is transplanted into the stray dog Sharik, Poligraph Poligraphovich Sharikov appears in the world. Let’s just imagine that this Sharikov, under the protection of Comrade Shvonder, gets a job not as the head janitor for clearing the city of stray cats, but in the church as a “priest”. In today’s reality we can see what would happen. Just as before, Sharikov would still indulge his craving for murder. The commandment of Christ’s love would sound like this: “We must love those who love us. As for the others… we can try to love them if they manage to repent before we manage to kill them.” The Gospel, theology, the teachings of the Holy Fathers… What is all of this to a Sharikov dressed in priest’s garb? “They write and write… It makes your head ache. Let’s just take it all and split it up.” Or rather, “unite”, as our Sharikovs in ryassas propose today. How? Very simple. Just bring together all the confessions like cats and dogs into one pen and not let them out until they’ve united, and chosen themselves dog that supposed to head the whole pack. In Sharikov’s opinion, all of these confessions have “tiny differences”, and therefore they need to be “tweaked” and combined into one compost pile. Moreover, the government should do this. Well how is Sharikov supposed to know that there is a constitution somewhere, and in it is section 35, where it’s stated that the Church and the State are separate? Sharikov has his own logic. He may be in a ryassa, but that there is eternal life—he neither knows nor wants to know. Therefore, for him “above all else” is what’s here and now. Especially since with the help of his friend Shvonder and his drinking buddies in the communal apartment, he can now stake his claims on Professor Preobrazhensky’s apartment, and mark his place in the dyptichs of Local Churches. These boys in trousers also have the nerve to push their demands on a respected Primate of a Local Church. “As they say—I want it all!”
The former dog forever desires to break into polite society. Sharikov has acquired human characteristics, has learned to walk and talk; he’s got his identification documents and yet he still hasn’t understood that just having these attributes does not “make you human”.
It’s not enough to don a ryassa and a panagia; you also have to have the spirit of Christ’s love and mercy. You have to have faith in God and not in something temporary, even if it lasts a long time. And you have to at least have a conscience, even the most elementary concept of human decency. Of course, Sharikovs are more used to taking circular saws and iron rebar in hand and seizing from others what belongs to them.
But what does this have to with Christ, and what does it have in common with Him?
On the Legalization of erotica and pornography in the Ukraine
Christ is in our midst, dear readers!
On the website of the President of Ukraine at the beginning of last month, electronic petition No. 22/146438-ep was registered concerning “The legalization of erotica and pornography on the territory of Ukraine”. It got more than 25,500 votes, and now our President is obligated to review it. The author bases his petition upon, among other things, the fact that right now, when many people have lost their jobs, this is an ideal chance to make money and bring it into the national budget. Apparently, according to petition’s author’s point of view, a better use of our compatriots can no longer be found. Following the logic of this petition, we could end up with the legalization of child prostitution, because schoolchildren are now doing distance learning, and they could be helping their parents survive in these difficult economic conditions. The author calls our laws governing this “medieval”—laws that could “shock foreigners” and “embarrass Ukrainians”. Possibly the author of the petition himself moves in circles where people are embarrassed that it is illegal to film porn. But I am sure that people who have preserved even elementary ideas of shame and conscience have no such embarrassment.
Further in the text there is talk of some deep resentment that our laws contradict LGBT values. And furthermore, according the author’s thinking, the legalization of erotica and porn will undoubtedly aid in achieving victory over the enemy and encourage our soldiers to make new and greater efforts. If our people had battled against fascism during the Second World War using such means, we would hardly have won the victory. Depravity has never made anyone stronger. The fall of great empires began with precisely this. Sacred scripture of all religions talks about how fornication leads sooner or later to one thing—to a curse on the nation that has surrendered itself to it.
Such petitions could only be compiled by an enemy of our Motherland. Anyone with common sense well understands the true motive of this petition: to open up the Ukraine to yet another dirty profitable business. Perhaps it would be better to call upon Ukrainians to not make money off of the sorrows of their compatriots? To not rent unoccupied apartments to forced refugees and migrants at astronomically inflated prices? It would be far better to call people to compassion, to care for those who have found themselves in such trouble. Today, when children, mothers, and the elderly are dying, when our people’s blood is pouring in rivers, homes are being destroyed, and people are left jobless, this petition sounds like some kind of satanic blasphemy, and a cruel mockery of our people.