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ORTHODOXY AND THE CULTURE OF THE YOUTH



Nemanja Mrdjenovich (in the home ot Saint John of Kronstadt in Saint-Petersburg)



    Even thou the Orthodox foundations at East were indestructible, the walls had started to rotten at the down of the twentieth century, and after we were basely shaken from the inside, on the first attack from the outside we proclaimed the capitulation.

    The cultural walls of the Orthodox East broke in the middle of the twentieth century and we were flooded with so called modern trends from the west, which were surprisingly well accepted by our youth. The struggle between the West and Orthodoxy is no longer some imaginary conception that we can use as an instrument of fear for our catechism teachers and their students, it is a cruel reality for every one of us. The Western society is the one that is controlling the heavy artillery in this war, that is the media, and it is the West who is trying to taint us with their sub-cultural viruses for which only they can have the vaccine.

    The creators of a “new age” are aware that there is only one path to victory and that is through defeating the youth, in other words if they succeed to provide a safe tomorrow for them selves. Our awareness of the existence of this plan will not be inaf if we want to achieve anything in this field.

    We are not exaggerating at all when we say that the Western and Eastern cultures are in war, because the differences of two are so obvious that every collision they have is full off sparks.

     When we are mentioning Eastern culture, here and in the rest of the text, we are mainly talking about Orthodox Christianity.

The best examples of this sparks between the West and the East are today’s situation in Serbia, Georgia and Ukraine. By the nature of this “western offensive” we can drown a conclusion that next targets will be Byelorussia and then Russia as a main pillar of the East, in other words, Moscow as a third Rome.

    The West, in it’s aims to establish a New world order, largely relays on getting the youth for it self. As their most important bait they see hedonism. They are trying to create a state of global anastatic peace with in generally most active part of the population, and that is offcourse the youth.

    There is no need for a special explanation how hedonism and Orthodoxy are completely different in it’s teachings, and how one who is considered a hedonist is to be considered as a traitor of Orthodoxy and God.
    From the beginning of all ages the health of one nation, or culture, is reflected by the health of it’s youth. By the healthy youth we consider those who, by the words of Saint Filaret of Moscow “love their own enemies, crushing the enemies of the fatherland and detest the enemies of the Lord”!

    West knows this orthodox principle, and is creating his own strategy towards the youth on the same foundations, only in the opposite direction. In the beginning of this “western offensive”, and for the beginning we can take the French revolution from 1789, they were trying to set different ideals for the youth, which is always in a fighting mood, to fight for. They have tried to set ideals reflected in “equality, brotherhood and liberty” turned up side down. These ideals they had were essentially the ideals of the East, but with a difference that East was aspiring to them throe the integral society, and West, on the other hand, corrupted them in its’ preachings of individualism.

    After this primary initiative, where we saw an attempt to create ideals, followed a quite revolution, in other words undermining of the East from the inside. We excepted the cuckoo egg and we did not even notice the moment when systems as bolshevism, capitalism and liberal democracy hatch out. Each one of those systems is founded on the very same individualistic teaching that they have created to prove that personal interest of the individual is the priority above all others. Those teaching provoked millions, and in the period from the French revolution until First world war we had an era of “idealism”, that is a twister of bolshevism, capitalism and liberal democracy, which was coming from the same source. Orthodox youth perished in this period and survived the XX century only because of rear individuals of the era.

    In the period just before First World War broke out, and even the war started with a shot of seventeen years old Gavrilo Princip, the ideals were considered as most valuable virtues one can have. This is the moment we mentioned at the beginning of this text, the moment when walls of the East, undermined as they were, collapsed on the very first attack from the West.

    The period between two world wars was marked with great seething all over the world, as a test of patience for the nations. When the passion of fascism, communism and democracy ideologists reached their peek, that is after the Second World War has ended, the youth become absolutely equanimous toward all ideologies or religion, at last the individualism has triumphed. On this point we saw a second faze in the illness of individualism, life juices were sucked out from the body of the youth, we experienced global death of the spirit and indifference in all pores of the society. The elders of the West controlled Fighiting spirit, which is so normal for the youth, and they did it with increasing and decreasing life standards which depended from the obedience and indifference of the youth towards its’ own wellbeing.

    The elders of the west, creators of globalism, are aware that the youth is a great danger for any system, particularly one so despotic as a project of the New world order. That is the main reason for controlling the youth, which was established on the principle of a stick and a carrot. In other words, eastern youth was controlled by opening and closing of the financial paths, loans and general economic dependency while on the other hand, western youth was controlled by gradual decreasing and erasing moral and ethical borders.

    In the early nineties of the last century elders started a new faze of the occupation, the faze of equalising. The plan was to erase borders, to implement one, global currency, to allow only one global force and to brake any sign of mutiny in the so called “Melting pot” society. Eventhou, this plan is developing without any major problems for its’ creators, there are some optimistic points.

    When the storm of the nineteens started to cool down, after almost a hundred years we saw the orthodox youth, right there on the surface. This is the class that was lost for almost a century, and naturally a class that does not enjoy strong support in waters of politics or culture, but it is the class that have a will to fight, and ideals to fight for.

    For this rebirth we can be most thankful to the institution of family who was a basic cell of the eastern society throe all times, and that as we can see, with God’s will, survived this period.     Now is a chance for this orthodox youth to take the place of tomorrows elite, and to set the path for others with its own example, to be a light tower in this fog of life, created by the so called “open society” of present times.

    At the time of globalisation, which is a synonym for imposing of the Western value standards in a global way, it is necessary to create a strong Orthodox front among the youngsters, which should take the today’s open key positions of the elite of the tomorrow’s society. It is this shortage of elite in the first place that has broth us in this non-enviable position. And now it is of vital importance to build the new pillars of Eastern society, on the existing foundations seen in the elite Orthodox youth.

    Today’s orthodox youth has a task to change the main streams of culture. To create ideals to fight for, and to force their enemies to fight against them. The youth must put in a great effort to wake up the world, to alarm it, to help every individual to develop in community. In other words to make a society where every orthodox youngster will be strong on the inside, always aiming to higher values. Because, if the youth has the ideals to fight for, if it has its principles which are not going to be crushed, if every individual is a pillar strongly integrated in the orthodox foundations, than the flood of western propaganda will pass around us and it will not brake us. The “cocacolisation”, that is materialistic culture will not be able to resist in the struggle with spiritually strong community, which is made of spiritually strong individuals.

    To create such a society is a task put in front a few co-creators, firstly the family, secondly the Church and finally the State.

    It is the family that must implement sense of belonging to the community, love to the close one’s and tides with its roots to the youngsters. The Church is the one that must except these youngsters and educate them in orthodox way from their earliest days. And at last, it is the State that is responsible to create conditions in which is possible for the prior two to complete their tasks, as we could expect in the future that this youth will be competent inaf to take the positions in the authority system, in its final goal of creating and keeping this culture alive and strong, but in the same time peaceful mega power.


Nemanja S. Mrdjenovich




(Paper presented at the International Congess "Orthodoxy, Youth and the Future of Russia", Saint-Petersburg, 18. February (3. March) 2005.)

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