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Berdyaev, Nikolai Aleksandrovich

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Nikolai Berdyaev - philosopher, . religious thinker and writer - born March 6, 1874,
. Kiev. He came from an old noble family.

Berdyaev received his primary education at home, a good command of German and French. As a child enrolled in the family tradition in the pages, in the 1887 - 1891 he. studied in Kiev and Vladimir cadet corps, and then instead of entering the Page Corps for almost three years preparing to pass the matriculation exams for university admission.

From 14 years he loved to read books of philosophy: Hegel, Kant, Schopenhauer and others. Just early, and he realized his calling - to be a philosopher, a man who devoted himself the search for truth and reveal the meaning of life ". From the second attempt, in 1894, he received the matriculation of Kiev-Pechersk school.

In 1894 - 1897 he. Berdyaev studied at Kiev University Sv. Vladimir: a year on the natural separation of Physics and Mathematics Department, then - at the Faculty of Law. Self-education, wrote the first independent work - antikantiansky Etude "On the morality of duty and moral heart desire". Participated in the circle, on an apartment G. Chelpanov, private university lecturer, who gave an optional course criticism of Marxism, as well as a student of Marxist central circle of self-development and Kiev, Union of the struggle for liberation of the working class ". Even then Berdiaev apparent ability lecturer and passionate polemicist.

In 1897. Berdyaev was first arrested for participating in student demonstrations. Second time he was arrested in 1898. on charges of involvement in anti-government actions. In 1900, Mr.. was exiled for three years in the Vologda Province under strict police surveillance.

In 1898, Mr.. held literary debut Berdyaev: in "God's World" was published two of his reviews. In 1899. He wrote his first independent article - "FA. Lange and critical philosophy in its relationship to socialism ". In 1900, Mr.. completed work on the book "Subjectivism and Individualism in social philosophy" is a critical sketch of the NK. Michael, in which "the ideas of Marxism combined with idealism".

Reference was serving with A. Bogdanov, A. Vannovskim, A. Lunacharsky, A. Remizov, B. Savinkov, P. Shchegolev. The years spent in exile, Berdyaev dedicated study of philosophy. It was there that there was a transition "from Marxism to idealism".

In 1904 - 1907 he. He lived in St. Petersburg. Since January 1909, after a trip abroad, settled in Moscow.

Berdyaev became a witness and one of the creators of the process which he himself called "Russian renaissance of the early twentieth century". He participated in Kiev, Moscow memory Vl. Soloviev and the Petersburg Religious-Philosophical Society (RIF), was a member of the Psychological Society at the University of Moscow. He used the famous "media" on the tower "at Vyach. Ivanov, on "Sunday" in In. Rozanov, at the meetings: the Moscow Orthodox theological circles M. Novoselova, Academy of Fine Arts at A. Scriabin, a mug "Orthodox revival, the Society of Free Aesthetics, Moscow literary and artistic circle. Religious and philosophical interviews were arranged and the house Berdyaev in Moscow.

At the invitation of Dr.. Merezhkovsky and W. Gippius, together with C. Bulgakov, he became part of the magazine "New Way", and in 1905. editor of its continuation - Journal "Problems of Life. Published in the magazine "Problems of Philosophy and Psychology," "God's World", "Polar Star" and other. Participated in the collections of "Problems of Idealism" and "Milestones".

For the article "dampers the spirit" (1913), directed against the Holy Synod, who personified for Berdyaev official orthodoxy, against him was prosecuted for blasphemy. Ceased, it was only after the February Revolution.

In 1914, Mr.. Berdyaev published a book "The Meaning of Creativity. Experience justification of the man, "laid the foundations of its original religious and philosophical systems. The book was controversial assessment and disputes.

Events 1917. Berdyaev experienced as "the time of their own destiny, rather than as something imposed from the outside it". As an ideological opponent of Bolshevism, he nevertheless, after October, 1917. experienced the creative impulse and the rise of social activity. In 1917 - 1918 he. He wrote more than 40 feature articles published in "Yesterday", "Narodopravstve", "Russian freedom" and other publications. Several articles Berdyaev determine the meaning of what is happening, the origins of the Revolution, raised the possibility of further developments.

In the first half of 1918. apartment Berdyaev emerged Free Academy of Spiritual Culture (VADK), has received official status in autumn 1919. In VADK he taught courses in philosophy of history and philosophy of religion.

In 1918 - 1920 to. He worked at the State Institute of expression, Moscow University, Russia Academy of Artistic Sciences and other academic institutions and educational institutions. At that time he had written the book "Philosophy of inequality. Letters to the enemies of social philosophy and philosophy of Dostoevsky.

The first time Berdyaev was arrested Cheka in 1920,. in the case of "Tactical Center", the second time - in 1922. on charges of anti-Soviet activities. He announced the decision of the Politburo of the RCP (B.) and the Presidium of the Central Executive Committee of its perpetual expulsion from Soviet Russia.

In 1922 - 1924 he. Berdyaev lived in Berlin, considering Germany as a transition point between Russia and Western Europe. In late 1922. Berdyaev's apartment on the initiative P.B. Struve was a meeting of philosophers, . expelled from Russia, . and members of the White movement, . which Berdyaev in sharp form distanced himself from the White ideas ", . Considering, . we can not count on the violent overthrow of Bolshevism, . because it can only be overcome by slow internal process of religious repentance and spiritual revival of the Russian people,

Berlin Berdyaev continued cultural and educational and teaching activities. In 1922, Mr.. on his initiative and with the assistance of the American YMCA was opened by the religious and philosophical Academy (RFA), continuing the tradition of previous RFO and VADK. As in Moscow, and Berdyaev lectured conducted seminars. Simultaneously, he served as dean of the department and member of the Academic Council of the Russian scientific institute for training of Russian students, opened in February 1923, the institute he was reading a popular course on the history of Russian thought.

Autumn 1923. attended the first congress of "Russian Student Christian Movement (RSHD). He became an honorary member of the Board RSHD and participated in the congresses of the movement until 1936, when, in his view, the movement became dominant right-wing fascist groups.

In 1923, Mr.. Berdyaev has published several books, written more in Russia. In Berlin, he wrote a sketch "New Middle Ages".

In the summer of 1924. Berdyaev for material reasons he moved to France. First rented an apartment, and in 1938. moved into a house in Clamart, inherited from a family friend - Englishwoman F. West. Since 1928. regularly on Sundays Berdiaev arranged interviews with the tea, both in Moscow and Berlin. Among the regular visitors were. Fondaminsky, E. Izvolskaya, M. Kallash, D. Fedotov and other.

In November 1924. chaired by Berdyaev in Paris began to work Religious-Philosophical Academy. He taught courses - on issues of Christianity, "" On the modern spiritual traditions, and others, conducted seminars - "Idols and Ideals," "The main trends of modern European culture" and others. Since 1925. participated in meetings of the Brotherhood of Sts. Sofia, and has lectured at meetings of the Russian National Committee. Was, along with about. Bulgakov Zenkovsky, Fedotov and Fondaminsky, one of the founders of the League of Orthodox Culture ".

Since 1924. until his death Berdyaev was editor of the publishing house YMCA-Press. Since 1925. by 1940. edited with the participation Vysheslavtseva magazine "Way. The body of Russian religious thought ".

A passionate defender of freedom of creativity, Berdyaev in 1935. defended Bulgakov, decree of Metropolitan Sergius was accused of heresy for his theological views. In late 1939 - early 1940. sided Fedotova, . received, . the proposal Metropolitan Eulogius, . ultimatum from the faculty of the Theological Institute of the incompatibility of teaching in an orthodox school of writing articles on political topics for publications "left" orientation,
. Collaborated in the popular emigre publications - "Days", "Latest News", "Contemporary notes", "New Russia".

Berdyaev had a wide circle of contacts with the French literature, Catholicism and the intellectual world. Participated in international meetings and congresses.

In 1927 - 1928 he. Paris was published "The Philosophy of the Free Spirit", received the prize of the French Academy of Moral Sciences and became a creative Berdyaev beginning of the basic issues of Christianity. Landmark was the work of Berdyaev: "The Destiny of Man. Experience paradoxical ethics, "" I and the world of objects. The experience of loneliness and the philosophy of communication "," The destiny of man in the modern world "," Spirit and Reality. Fundamentals of divine-human spirituality "," The origins and meaning of Russian communism, "" Slavery and Freedom. Experience personalist philosophy ".

After the occupation of France Germanic troops Berdyaev with family and together with Mochulsky went to Peel a Arcachon, but after the Germans, and there they were back in Clamart. After Germany attacked the USSR Berdyaev became a so-called "pro-Soviet" stance (in the words of Berdyaev, "of course its inherent patriotism has reached the limit voltage"). During the German occupation of Berdyaev almost never make public presentations and lectures, devoting this time "concentrated philosophical creativity". Became a member of the Union of Patriots, "sympathized with the resistance movement, published in the newspaper" Russian patriot ". Participated in the Center of the philosophical and spiritual studies M. Davie.

Under the influence of the tragic events of World War II Berdyaev began to rethink the traditional Christian metaphysics. This is indicated by his work "Russian idea", "existential dialectic of the divine and human", "Truth and Revelation. Prolegomena to a critique of revelation ".

Years Berdyaev lived in France, became for him the "age enhanced philosophical creativity".

Berdyaev died at his desk, 24 March 1948, Mr.. He was buried at the cemetery in Clamart.


Berdyaev N.A. Eros and personality. M., 1989.
Berdyaev N.A. Philosophy of Freedom. Meaning of creativity. M., 1989.
Berdyaev N.A. The fate of Russia. M., 1990.
Berdyaev N.A. Meaning of history. M., 1990.
Berdyaev N.A. The origins and meaning of Russian Communism. M., 1990.
Berdyaev N.A. Soul of Russia. , 1990.
Berdyaev N.A. Russian idea. M., 2000.

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