Über das christliche Dienstethos, kreative Minderheiten und kulturelle Kontinuität

Jacques-Louis David - Der Schwur der Horatier (gemeinfrei)

Der russische Staats- und Rechtsphilosoph Iwan Iljin versuchte nach der Machtergreifung der Kommunisten in Russland die geistigen Grundlagen für eine spätere Erneuerung des Landes und seiner Kultur aus seinen christlichen Wurzeln zu schaffen. In einem in diesem Zusammenhang in den 1920er Jahren entstandenen Aufsatz beschreibt er, dass die Kontinuität jeder Kultur unter solchen Umständen auf kleinen Gemeinschaften beruhe, die sich transzendenten Zielen verpflichtet fühlen würden.

Dies bringe ein Dienstethos hervor, das solche Gemeinschaften inspiriere und es ihnen erlaube, als kreative Minderheit auch unter schwierigen Bedingungen den kulturellen Kern späterer Erneuerung darzustellen.

“Through all the great discord of our days, amidst catastrophe, tragedy and loss, in disputes and temptations, we must remember one thing and live by it: the maintenance and propagation of a spirit of knightly service. […] We should protect this spirit as something sacred […]. For this spirit is as the air and oxygen of Russian national salvation, and where it would run out, there would immediately set in an atmosphere of rot and decay, overt or hidden Bolshevism. […] Everywhere that the spirit of chivalry weakens or disappears, disaster awaits us. […]

The spirit of chivalry is comprised of steadfast loyalty to the Transcendent path. There are men who do not see the Cause at all and do not comprehend Transcendent requirements. They know only their own business, personal success, and everything else for them is only a means to that end. […] The demands of the Transcendent, however it might be named – the Church, the Motherland, Orthodoxy, the Army, Science, Art – only belabor and burden them. They are not dedicated to God’s Cause on earth. And from the works of these unfeeling machines, these indifferent men and time servers, all human organizations begin to be emptied internally and die away, disenchanting and irritating all who come into contact with them, provoking censure and straining an atmosphere of destructive protest.

Now as never before, Russia needs men capable not of servility or time-serving, but service. Men who not only see the Cause and comprehend the demands of the Transcendent, but who are devoted to God’s Cause on earth. Men not only not indifferent and not unfeeling, but inspired and inspiring others – men who do not concede the interests of the Cause neither for money, honors, and authority, nor over any requests or favors – incorruptible in the fullest and highest meaning of this word. The spirit of chivalry comprises first and foremost the voluntary and willed acceptance of hardship and danger in the name of God’s Cause on earth. And we must admit that if life expects this from us always […] then after Russia’s […] defeat in the Revolution, all of her rebirth and restoration will depend totally on whether there shall be found in our land a cadre of men firm in such a spirit and capable of such service. An incorruptible cadre, and therefore selling out nothing to either foreigners or the internal enemies of Russia; loyal in love and conscience, and therefore capable of gathering around themselves trust and dedication in all hearts faithful to the Motherland; knightly, and therefore called to service and the organization of public salvation.”

Der von Iwan Iljin beschriebene Ansatz hat sich unter vergleichbaren Bedingungen bereits mehrfach bewährt. In allen Fällen, in denen Kulturen nach gravierenden Verwerfungen, die sich z.T. über Jahrzehnte oder sogar Jahrhunderte erstreckten, eine Erneuerung gelang, waren Gemeinschaften der von Iljin beschriebenen Art die Träger sowohl des Fortbestands der Kultur während der Zeit ihrer Krise als auch Träger ihrer Erneuerung. (FG3)