Spiritual Belief: A World Split Apart

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Rico Spears
Ms. Lisle
9/26/12
Academic Writing and Research

Spiritual Belief
In this analysis paper I will talk about incorporating God throughout everyday life, whether it be through materialistic things or one’s own self perception of how it is to live and pattern after Godly ways . In “A World Split Apart,” Alexander Solzhenitsyn infers that there is a higher power than man; a lack of spirituality can harm ones afterlife. Through a higher power all things are possible he says, “If, as claimed by humanism, man were born only to be happy, he would not be born to die. Since his body is doomed to death, his task on earth evidently must be more spiritual: not a total engrossment in everyday life, not the search for the best ways to obtain material goods and then their carefree consumption.” Whereas in “A Voice from Russia’s Past,” by Jack Fruchtman Jr. he simply argues that Solzhenitsyn is speaking from Slavophiles point of view, which stands as a group of Russian philologists and nationalists interested in the origins of the Russian language. Fruchtman also stated that Solzhenitsyn echoed this theme at Harvard when he noted that the philosophical foundation of the West has historically rested on a “rationalistic humanism,” by which he meant “the proclaimed and enforced autonomy of man from any higher force above him. (Fruchtman 44)” My last and final source will come from “Presenting Humanism” by Jende Huang. Huang speaks from a humanist view and states that our society has been so socialized to accept the idea that believing in God is something that is "good," and even for a religious liberal, there may exist, an unconscious desire to hold onto that. The realization that you don't need a god to live your life is a difficult one and one that cannot be easily acknowledged.

Solzhenitsyn and Huang share some of the same spiritual beliefs when referring to man. Huang states that man was created to be “God like” and to pattern ways after God. Speaking from a humanist point of view Huang says, “ideally, humanist are continually open to new ideas and new information, and refuse to be shackled by beliefs that remain outside the realm of testability,” (Huang 1-3); he proves this by stating humanism is analogous to science in the sense that both are concerned not only with the body of knowledge and the evidence that supports it, but with efficient means and methods used to gain knowledge. Is it right that man’s life and society’s activities are ruled by material expansion above all? Solzhenitsyn asks this question in reference to government. Laws are put in place to abide by but there is always a loop hole in any law system. Laws are to protect the rights of others or for humans as one body to abide by. Through all the materialistic abuse of power used by some government officials, Solzhenitsyn tends to acknowledge that even in the era that he is in, man is still the head. Life after death, as he talks about spirituality, should be better than your life on earth. Even Huang states that if you accept the bible as truth, you’re agreeing that God would spread his message to pre-agricultural nomads who couldn’t even imagine the evaluation of human society over the subsequent thousands of years. Understanding that you don’t need God to live your everyday life, Huang says, humans still do things to show representation that he is a factor in life such as: going to church and taking communion; “ Do this as often as you remember me” 1st Corinthians 11:25 (NKJ). Man is not perfect but by following the bible he can reach salvation and become cleansed through baptism and understanding that each day you can become more “God like.” James Reston who wrote “A Russian at Harvard” states that Solzhenitsyn is right in many cases but contradicts the demeanor of his message a lot. Solzhenitsyn entitles his address “A World Split Apart” why so Reston questions the diverse message in each passage to say it sounds like a “mind split...
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