Anna Karenina and the Givenness of Life

Anna Karenina and the Givenness of Life

I was in a serious slump this February, drowning in a sea of unaccomplished tasks all loudly condemning my laziness and inefficiency. I felt incapable of stirring up my own enthusiasm for life to get my head above water, no matter how well I organized my planner or how early I set my alarm. But now it’s March, and things are looking up! My long and daunting to-do list is finally beginning to shrink...

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A Reason for the Pain: Dostoevsky's Answer to the Problem of Pain in The Brothers Karamazov

A Reason for the Pain: Dostoevsky's Answer to the Problem of Pain in The Brothers Karamazov

“In sorrow, seek happiness.”  So says Father Zossima in The Brothers Karamazov, Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky’s literary homage to the problem of pain and suffering.  A murder mystery extraordinaire, this novel traces the history of one Ivan Karamazov, eldest brother of the Karamazovs and an intellectual humanist.  Frustrated by the problem of evil and its implications regarding the nature of God and His posture toward man, Ivan conceives of atheism as a kind of work around.  He reasons that if there is no God, then there is no supreme moral law and no eternity. 

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