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place again.

3) A hundred times I have said it to myself
and have written it down : the real and only salva-
tion from all sorrow is the knowledge of one's
mission, the anxiety whether you have done that
for which you were sent.

4) Nearly every husband and wife reproach
each other for things for which they do not con-
sider themselves guilty. But on the one side there
is no ceasing to accuse, nor on the other to vindi-

5) They do not run after a poet or a painter
so much, as after an actor, and especially after
a musician. Music calls forth a direct physical
effect, sometimes acute, sometimes chronic.

6) We absolutely falsely ascribe intelligence
and goodness to talent, and the same to beauty.
In this lies great self-delusion.

7) It came into my head with remarkable clear-
ness that in order to always feel good, it is neces-
sary always to think of others, especially when
you speak with some one.

8) The movement of life, the broadening of a
separate being gives time. If there would be no
movement, no enlarging of love, then there would
be no time; as to space, it is the representation
of other beings. If there were no other beings,


FEBRUARY] The Journal of Leo Tolstoi

there would be no space. (All nonsense, un-

9) Women are deprived of a moral sense for a
motor. They haven't got this sail spread and
therefore it does not carry.
Feb. 18, Nicholskoe. If I live.

Feb. 18. Nicholskoe.

Forty-five years ago I was in battle. 180
I feel a great sinking in energy. I am very
weak, cannot work. But is it not possible to live
unceasingly before God, doing His work in pro-
portion to His strength. I shall try. Help me,
Lord. I shall take up the letters. Here de-
mands are made, and it is possible to fulfil His

Evening. Indisposed. Apathy, weakness. Am
not taking up the essay, 181 wrote letters. Just
now a letter from Biriukov. I answered it.

February ig. Nicholskoe.

I am just as apathetic, but am not worried.
Wrote letters. Wrote to every one. I am going
to bed, it is past twelve.

To-day, Feb. 20, Nicholskoe. Seven o'clock in

the evening.

I still feel just as badly; constipation and heart-
burn. I fell asleep in the morning. Then, not


The Journal of Leo Tolstoi [1897

trying to work, I took a walk. Extreme weak-
ness. My soul is calm, only it is a bore that I
am unable to work. The house is full of peo-

. . . Yesterday I wrote many letters.

I walked and thought:

There is no greater cause for error and confu-
sion of ideas, the most unexpected ones, and
inexplicable in any other way, than the recognition
of authorities, i.e., the infallible truthfulness or
beauty of certain persons, of books or of works
of art. M. Arnold 182 was a thousand times right
when he said that the business of criticism lies in
detaching the good from the bad, from all that has
been written and done, and mainly the bad from
that which is recognised as splendid, and the good
from that which is recognised as bad, or is not
recognised at all. The most striking instance of
this error and its terrible consequences, holding
back for ages the forward movement of Christian
mankind, is the authority of the Holy Scriptures
and the Gospels. How many of the most unex-
pected and remarkable absurdities, sometimes
necessary for its own justification, sometimes not
necessary for anything, are said and written in
the text of the Holy Scriptures. . . . The same
thing happens in the Greek Tragedies, in Vergil,
Shakespeare, Goethe, Bach, Beethoven, Raphael
and in the new authorities.


FEBRUARY] The Journal of Leo Tolstoi

Perhaps I omitted the 2 1st. To-day, -perhaps the
22nd. February, Saturday. Nicholskoe.

Yesterday I did not work. I read through the
first draft on art pretty good. I went for
Yushkova's 183 dress. It was a nice trip. In the
evening they spoke about Art and then I heard
the brothers Konius 184 who arrived. . . .

To-day I am a little better in my health, I went
on skiis and felt weak at heart and uneasy when
I went far. It is evening now. I feel like writ-
ing letters.

I thought for The Appeal when I looked at the
numberless sons of N. in their overcoats : He is
bringing them up, " making " men of the world
of them. What for?

You will say : you live as you do for the sake of
the children. What for ? Why bring up another
generation of the same cheated slaves, not know-
ing why they live, and living such a joyless
Feb. 23. Nicholskoe. If I live.

February 23, Nicholskoe.

To-day I wrote willingly and eagerly all morn-
ing and it seems to me I advanced on the essay on
art. Then I took a walk before dinner. There
is still a pile of people. No serious talk. Yes-
terday there was music. . . . To-day an amateur
theatrical. Tania and Michail Adamovich


The Journal of Leo Tolstoi [1897

played very well. 185 It is now evening. The day
has passed almost without heart-burn.

February 24. Nicholskoe.

To-day I arose apathetic and fell asleep again
right after luncheon. After one, I went to meet
the riders. Came home, dined. Am struggling
successfully with heart-burn. Went for a walk in
the evening.

Read and am reading Aristotle (Benard) on
aesthetics. Very important.

Thought during these days :

1) Thought; why is it impossible to even speak
to some people . . . about truth and good so
far are they away from it. This is so, because
they are surrounded by such a thick layer of temp-
tations that they have become impenetrable. They
are unable to struggle with sin, because they do
not see the sin for the temptations. In this lies
the principal danger and all the horror of tempta-

2) They say to me when I condemn religious
propaganda: You also are preaching. No, I
do not preach mainly because I have nothing
to preach. Even to atheists I am not going to
preach God (if I preached, I erred) . I only draw
conclusions from what people accept, pointing out
the contradictions which are enclosed in what they
accept, and which they do not notice.


FEBRUARY] The Journal of Leo Tolstoi

3) ... a general, respectable, clean, correct,
with thick eye-brows and important mien ( and un-
commonly good-natured, but deprived of every
moral motive sense) gave me the striking thought,
as to how and by what means those most indiffer-
ent to social life, to the good of society as to
how just those people rise involuntarily to the po-
sition of rulers of people. I see how he will man-
age institutions upon which a million lives depend,
and just because he likes cleanliness, elegance, re-
fined food, dancing, hunting, billiards and every
possible kind of amusement, and not having the
means to keep himself in those regiments, or in-
stitutions, or societies where all this exist, is ad-
vanced little by little as a good and harmless man
and made a ruler of people. All are like N. and
their name is legion.

4) I am reading Aristotle. He says in Pol-
itics (Book VII, Chapter VIII): "Dans cette
republique parfaite, ou la vertu des citoyens sera
reele, ils s'abstiendront de toute profession me-
chanique, de toute speculation mercantile, travaux
degrades (degradants?) 186 et contraires a la vertu.
Ils ne se livreront pas davantage a 1'agricul-
ture. II faut du loisir pour acquerir la ver-
tu ".. . m

All his aesthetics has for its end ( ) 188

virtue. And we with the Christian understanding
of the brotherhood of man want to be guided by


The Journal of Leo Tolstoi [1897

the ethical and aesthetical conception of the an-
cients ! 1
Feb. 25. Nicholskoe. If I live.

February 25. Nicholskoe.

I am alive. I have written a little not as
easily as yesterday. The guests have departed.
Went for a walk twice. Am reading Aristotle.
To-day I received letters . . .

Yesterday, while walking, I prayed and exper-
ienced a remarkable sensation which is perhaps
similar to that which the mystics excite in them-
selves by spiritual works; I felt myself to be a
spiritual, free being bound by the illusion of the
Feb. 26. Nicholskoe. If I live.

Feb. 26, Nicholskoe.

I am alive. I am writing, so as to keep my
resolution. To-day I wrote letters all morning,
but I had no energy for work.

Went to Mme. Shorin. 189 I had a good talk
with her. Perhaps even to some purpose. Just
as Anna Michailovna 19 said to-day, that I helped
her. And thanks be.

I copied the letter to Posha.


FEBRUARY] The Journal of Leo Tolstoi

Feb. 27. Nicholskoe.

Wrote this morning poorly, but cleared up
something or other. Am well. Took a walk.
Spoke with Tania. And that is all.

Yesterday was Feb. 28. Nicholskoe.

I have written nothing. In the morning I
worked badly. Received a letter from Chertkov
and Ivan Michailovich and wrote to both.
Walked and went to Safonovo. 191

This morning I thought of something which
seemed to me important, namely:

i) I wiped away the dust in my room and
walking around, came to the divan and could not
remember whether I had dusted it or not. Just
because these movements are customary and un-
conscious I could not remember them and I felt
that it was impossible to. So that if I dusted and
forgot it, i.e., if I did an act unconsciously; then
it is just the same as if it never existed. If some
one conscious saw it, then perhaps it could be re-
stored. But if no one saw it, or saw it uncon-
sciously ; if the whole complex life of many people
pass along unconsciously, then that life is as if it
had never existed. So that life life only ex-
ists then, when it is lit by consciousness.

What, then, is this consciousness? What are
the acts which are lit by consciousness? The acts
which are lit by consciousness are those acts which


The Journal of Leo Tolstoi [1897

we fulfil freely, i.e., fulfilling them we know that
we might have acted otherwise. Therefore, con-
sciousness is freedom. Without consciousness
there is no freedom and without freedom there
can be no consciousness (if we are subjected to
violence and we have no choice as to how we
should bear that violence, we do not feel the vio-

Memory is nothing else than the consciousness
of the past, of the past freedom. If I were un-
able to dust or not to dust, I would not be con-
scious of dusting, if I were not conscious of dust-
ing, I would not have the choice of dusting or not
dusting. If I did not have consciousness and free-
dom, I would not remember the past, I would not
unite it into one. Therefore the very basis of life
is freedom and consciousness a freedom-con-

(It seemed to me clearer when I was thinking.)

March i, Nicholskoe.

. . . To-day I could not write anything in the
morning at all fell asleep. I took a walk both
in the morning and in the evening. It was very

I thought two things :

i) That death seems to me now just as a
change: a discharge from a former post and an


MARCH] The Journal of Leo Tolstoi

appointment to a new one. It seems that I am
all worn out for the former post and I am no
longer fit.

2) I thought about N as a good character for
a drama ; good-natured, clean, spoilt, loving pleas-
ure but good, and incapable of conceiving a radi-
cal moral requirement.

I also thought:

3) There is only one means for steadfastness
and peace : love, love towards enemies.

Yes, here this problem was presented to me
from a special, unexpected angle and how badly I
was able to solve it. I must try harder. Help
me, Father.
March 2, Nlcholskoe. If I live.

March 2, Nicholskoe.

I am alive. Entirely well. To-day I wrote
pretty well. In the evening after dinner I went to
Shelkovo. It was a very pleasant walk in the

Wrote a letter to Posha. Received a letter
from Tregubov. He is irritated because they in-
tercept the letters. But I am not vexed. I have
understood that one has to pity them, and I pity
truly. To-morrow we go. We have been here
a whole month.


The Journal of Leo Tolstoi [1897

Yesterday was March $rd. Moscow.

In the morning I did almost nothing. I stum-
bled up against the historic course of art. I took
a walk. After dinner I left. I arrived at 10.

March 4, Moscow.

Got up late. Handled my papers, wrote let-
ters to Posha, Nakashidze. Went to the public
library, took books. In the evening Dunaev and
Boulanger were here. It is now late. I am go-
ing to bed. S. is at a concert.
March 5. Moscow. If I live.

Heavens, how many days I have skipped : To-
day, March g. Moscow.

Out of the four days, I wrote two days on art
and to-day pretty much. I wanted to write Hadji
Murad very much and thought out something
pretty well touching. A letter from Posha.
Wrote to Chertkov and Koni about the terrible
thing that happened to Miss Vietrov. 192 I am
not going to write out what I have noted.

I am still in the same peaceful, because loving,
mood. As soon as I feel like being hurt or wear-
ied I remember God and that my work is only one,
to love, not to think of that which will be and
I feel better right away.

Tania is going to Yasnaya.


APRIL] The Journal of Leo Tolstoi

To-day, March 15, Moscow.

Lived not badly. I see the end of the essay on
art. Still the same peace. I thank God. I have
just now written letters. It is evening. I am
going into the tedious drawing-room.

To-day, April 4, Moscow.

Almost a month I have not written (20 days),
and I have lived the time badly, because I worked
little. Wrote all the time on art, became con-
fused these last days. And now for two days I
haven't written.

I have not lost my peace, but my soul is troubled,
still I am master of it. Oh, Lord! If only I
could remember my mission, that through oneself
must be manifested (shine) divinity. But the
difficulty is, that if you remember that alone you
will not live ; and you must live, live energetically,
and yet remember. Help me, Father.

I have prayed much lately that my life be bet-
ter. But as it is, the consciousness of the lawless-
ness of my life is shameful and depressing.

Yesterday I thought very well about Hadji
Murad that in it the principal thing was to ex-
press a deception of trust. How good it would
have been, were it not for this deception. Also
I am thinking more and more often of The Ap-

I am afraid that the theme of art has occupied

The Journal of Leo Tolstoi [1897

me lately for personal, selfish and bad reasons.
Je m* entends.

During this time I made few notes and if I
had been thinking about anything I have forgot-
ten it.

1) The world which we know and represent
for ourselves, is nothing else than laws of co-
relation between our senses (sens), and there-
fore, a miracle is a violation of these laws of co-
relation, it therefore destroys our conception of
the world. In the crudest form, it is thus : I know
that water (not frozen) is always liquid. And
its specific gravity is less than that of my body.
My eyes, hearing, touch, demonstrate to me liquid
water; and suddenly a man walks on this water.
If he walked on the water, then it proves nothing,
but only destroys my conception of water.

2) A very common mistake: To place the
aim of life in the service of people and not in the
service of God. Only in serving God, i.e., in do-
ing that which He wants, can you be certain that
you are not doing something vain and it is not
impossible to choose whom you are to serve.

3) Church Christians do not want to serve
God, but want God to serve them.

4) Shakespeare began to be valued when the
moral criterion was lost.

5) (For The Appeal.) We are so entangled
that every one of our steps in life is a participa-


MAY] The Journal of Leo Tolstoi

tion in evil : in violence, in oppression. We must
not despair, but we must slowly disentangle our-
selves from those nets in which we are caught;
not to tear ourselves through, that would en-
tangle us worse but to disentangle ourselves

6 )193

I am in a very bad physical condition, almost
fever, and the black gloom that comes before, but
up to now the spiritual is the stronger. Escorted
Maude's colony. 194 Ivan Michailovich is still
free. 195 Everything is all right.

Apr. g. Moscow.

Have been ill. With calmness I thought that
I would die. To-day I wrote well on Art. They
have taken Ivan Michailovich. There was a
search at Dunaev's. 196 It is all right with the
exiles. 197

Outwardly I am entirely calm, inwardly not en-
tirely. It is enough to bear in mind that every-
thing is for the good, and when I bear that in
mind as I do now it is good.

To-day May 3. Yasnaya Polyana.

Almost a month I have made no entries. A
bad and sterile month.

I cut out and burned that which I wrote in
heat. 198


The Journal of Leo Tolstoi [1897

To-day July 16. Y. P.

It is not one month that I have made no entries,
but two and a half. I have lived through much,
both the difficult and the good. 199 Have been ill.
Very severe pains I think in the beginning of
July. 200

I worked all this time on the essay on art, and
the farther I get the better. I finished it and am
correcting it from the beginning.

Masha married. 201 . . .

We do not quiet, moderate passion, the source
of the greatest calamities, but kindle it with all
our strength and then we complain that we suf-
fer. . . .

Good letters from Chertkov. A Kiev peasant
was here, Shidlovsky. 202

I feel that I am alone that my life not only
does not interest any one, but that they are bored
and ashamed that I continue to occupy myself
with such trifles.

I thought during this time :

i) A type of woman there are men such
also, but mostly it is women who are incapable of
seeing themselves, as if their necks were station-
ary and they could not look back at themselves.
It isn't exactly that they don't want to repent : but
they can't see themselves. They live as they do
and not in another way, because this way seems
good to them. And therefore if they do any-


JULY] The Journal of Leo Tolstoi

thing it is because it seems good to them. Such
people are terrifying. And such people may be
intelligent, stupid, good, wicked. When they are
stupid and wicked it is terrible.

2) With a low moral standard, a firmness of
judgment. The acts of all the best people are
explained by what / would have done. Christ
preached out of vanity, condemned the Pharisees
from envy, etc.

3 ) The second condition of art is novelty. To
a child everything is new and therefore it has
many artistic impressions. The new for us, is a
certain depth of feeling, that depth in which a
man finds his separate individuality from all.
That is for indifferent art. For the highest,
novelty lies only in religion, as religion is the
most advanced world point of view.

4) (For the drama.) They bring to the table
a man in tatters and they laugh at the inconsistency
of it and at his awkwardness. Revolt.

5) When it happens that you thought of some-
thing and then forgot what you thought, but you
remember and know the character of your
thoughts: sad, dismal, oppressive, joyous, keen
and even remember their order: first it was sad,
and then it became calm, etc., when you remem-
ber things that way, then it is exactly what music


The Journal of Leo Tolstoi [1897

6) A theme: A passionate young man in love
with a mentally diseased woman.

7) God gave us His spirit love, reason
in order to serve Him; but we use His spirit to
serve ourselves we use the axe to plane the

I feel fully well and strong physically, but
morally, weak. I feel like working and am able.
I am going to make notes. 203
July 17. Yasn. Pol. If I live.

July 17. Y. P.

Got up late, worked badly. There is neither
concentration nor capacity to embrace everything.
Nevertheless I have advanced. Masha came with
Kolia . . .

Yesterday I talked about love with N: that
we madly kindle this passion and then we suffer
from its exaggerations and excesses.

Went on my bicycle to Yasenki. I love this
motion very much. But I am ashamed.

A letter from Chertkov ; he is very ill. I value
him very much. And how not value him.

It is now 10 o'clock. The Shenshins have left
just now. I feel solemn and gloomy.
July 18, 1897. Y. P. If I live.


JULY] The Journal of Leo Tolstoi

I skipped three days. To-day July 21. Y. P.

I am working well enough. I am even satis-
fied with my work. Though I change much.
Everything has come to a head and has gained
much. I have been reviewing everything again
from the beginning.

The life around me is very wretched. . . .

I do not know why : whether from the stomach
or the heat or from excessive physical exercise
but in the evenings I feel very weak.

A good speech by Crookes as to how a micro-
scopic man would look upon the world. 204

Yesterday Novikov was here and he brought
splendid notes by Michael Novikov. 205 Wrote
letters: to Carus, 206 Ivan Michailovich. A let-
ter from Evgenie Ivanovich. 207
July 22. Y. P. If I live.

July 28. Y. P.

Six days that I haven't written. Three or four
days ago at night, I had an attack of cholera
morbus and the day after I was absolutely ill
and for two days I have been very weak and
have written very poorly. To-day I am a little

The children were here: Iliushin's family. 208
They are sweet grandchildren, especially Andru-
sha. Whatever notes I made, I will not write

The Journal of Leo Tolstoi [1897

out to-day. Longinov 209 was here, a friend of

Mme. Annenkov's and to-day Maude and Bou-


July 2g. Y. P. If I live.

To-day Aug. 7. Y. P.

During this time a pile of guests 21 . . . two
Germans, decadents; a naive and a somewhat
stupid one. . . . There were here: Novikov, the
scribe, a very powerful man, and Bulakhov, 211 also
a powerful one morally and intellectually. I live
very badly, weakly. Very little goodness. To-
day the Stakhoviches 212 and the Maklakovs 213 ar-
rived also.

I continue to work on my essay on art and,
strange to say, it pleases me. Yesterday and to-
day I read it to Ginsburg, Sobolev, Kasatkin 214
and Goldenweiser. The impression it produces
on them is exactly the same as it produces on me.

A letter from Crosby with a joyful letter from
a Japanese. 215 From Chertkov good letters.
The correspondence has been very neglected.

I am entirely alone and I weaken. I often say
to myself that one must live serving, but when I
enter life, though I do not exactly forget, yet I
scatter myself.

I have written down much, but to-day I have
no time to write it out.


AUGUST] The Journal of Leo Tolstoi

Father, help me. I weaken.

I am going to write absolutely every day.
Aug. 8. Y. P. If I live.

A peasant was here who had his arm torn by
a tree and amputated. He ploughs with a loop

Aug. g.

Stakhovich arrived. Read the essay. The
tenth chapter is bad. I worked pretty much.
Have written poor letters. I must write to Posha
and to Ivan Michailovich.

There is noted in the book:

1 ) A servant makes life false and corrupt. As
soon as you have servants, then you increase your
wants, complicate life and make it a burden. In-
stead of joy when you do things yourself, you
have vexation and the principal thing, you re-
nounce the main duty of life : the fulfilment of the
brotherhood of man.

2) The aesthetic and the ethical are two arms
of one lever: to the extent that you lengthen and
lighten one side, to that extent you shorten and
make heavier the other side. As soon as a man
loses his moral sense, he becomes particularly re-
sponsive to the aesthetic.

3) People know two Gods: one whom they
want to force to serve them, demanding from

The Journal of Leo Tolstoi [1897

him by prayers the fulfilment of their desires, and
another God, one whom we ought to serve, to
the fulfilment of whose will, all our desires ought
to be directed.

4) It is a common phenomenon that old people
love to travel, to go far and to change places.
Is it not a foreseeing and a readiness for the last

Aug. 15. Y. P.

I am continuing to work. Am advancing.

Lombroso was here a limited, naive little
old man. The Maklakovs. Leo arrived with
his wife. 216 Boulanger a nice man. Wrote
letters to everybody: Posha and Ivan Michailo-
vich and Van-der-Veer. The oppressive Leon-
tev 217 was here.

There was something I wanted to write very
much, but have forgotten. . . .

A revolting report concerning the missionary
congress in Kazan. 218

There is noted: "Woman's character"
and I remember that it was something very good.
Now I have forgotten. It seems to me that it
was that the peculiarity of woman's character is
that her feeling alone guides her life, and that

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