The academy at that time lost its free-thinking traditions.
It is no coincidence that the translation of Arndt’s work Todorsky addresses to the “Christ-loving reader”, seeing his task in “multiplying true worship in human hearts.”
In the preface to the translation, Todorsky expresses concern about the state of modern church life: “Christ and his word are praised and glorified, but the very non-Christian life is accompanied … such a godless life gave me the reason for writing the book so that everyone could stand in it. ” , siest, in the testimony of the true, living and virtuous beliefs, through unhypocritical piety, .. but to abide in Christ, and Christ in us. Also, so that every vdal, so true repentance of extermination from the inner basis of the heart to occur; the need for the heart, mind, and feelings to change .. “.
Here, it would seem, a purely theological idea is filled with a special ethical meaning: the renewal of religious life is impossible without the spiritual rebirth (in the late Protestant style – sanctification) of man. However, the subtext of the idea itself, as in all Protestantism, contains contradictory principles. On the one hand, the spiritual renewal of man is impossible without his humanistic self-affirmation, access to the real world and liberation from any coercion – and 123helpme.me pietism insisted on an active life position of the person, his self-worth and self-affirmation …
On the other hand, the strengthening of religious piety came into conflict with the “world.” Therefore, pietism at the same time required the asceticism of a person’s personal life, his exclusively religious knowledge, which is possible only in the Bible, and in social terms – the total Christianization of all parts of social life. Early pietism emphasizes the first conclusion, late – on asceticism and all-limitation.
Simon Todorsky shared the positions of early Enlightenment pietism. In his translations, he advocates the reform of Orthodoxy, its break with dead scholastic thought, the rejection of the clerical imperative, the formalization of religious sentiment. After all, according to the thinker, “true Christianity will take place not in words or external testimony, but in the living faith, from it the true fruits, and all Christian virtues grow, as from Christ himself … for the righteous will receive all good from me. and bliss.
Todorsky’s work thus opened an interesting page in the history of Protestant influences on Ukrainian religious thought. By the way, the thinker did not hide his convictions even after returning from abroad, teaching at the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy. Many students admired his thoughts, including Hryhoriy Skovoroda. And even after assuming a high ecclesiastical position, Simon continued to profess the views acquired in Halle.
Conducting theological studies with the future Catherine II, he argued that “they say that the internal differences between Protestantism and Eastern Christianity are not so great – this is the opinion of Gallic pietists, which caused the translation of Todor” 24. At the same time , to some extent it was Chizhevsky himself, who emphasized the ideological affinity of pietistic works with Orthodox (for example, “Diopters”) and Eastern ascetic literature. At the same time, he believed that the work of Prokopovych, Todorsky, Maksymovych, Skovoroda and others indicates this kinship, through it – the unity of Ukrainian culture with European.
The influence of German pietism also affected the work of Hryhoriy Skovoroda, who is considered by many researchers to be a representative of mystical thought in philosophy, and M. Hrushevsky – a forerunner of “evangelical Christianity” in Ukrainian religious thought. It is no coincidence that Skovoroda took a science course abroad and also spent some time in Halle. We know little about his life abroad. From 1751 to 1753 he studied metaphysics and theology at Halle, listening to lectures by Christian Wolf; prepared here his translation of the sermons of John Chrysostom, wrote a series of fables.
Chizhevsky studied the influence of German religious thought on Skovoroda especially carefully, analyzing the symbolism of his worldview, the philosophy of the “heart”, comparing it with German mystics (Eckhart, Tauler, Suzo) and pietists (Frank, Arndt, Gergard). in fact, it represented the tendency of personal search for God, the rejection of the church-formal understanding of the faith, which was deeply present in the Ukrainian thought of the XVIII century. and in some way appeared in the XIX century. among the lower social strata.
This tendency is also manifested in some other thinkers of the Skovorodyn period, in particular, in Ivan Khmelnytsky. He received his doctorate in philosophy in Königsberg and wrote “Reflections on the Fundamentals of Philosophy”; during his stay abroad he actively collaborated with the German magazine “Hamburg Herald”.
Semyon Gamaliah, one of the few domestic translators of the legacy of Europe’s most famous mystics, also gravitated to German pietistic philosophy: Jacob Böhme, Henri Saint-Martin, and Johann Jung-Stilling. Gamaliel’s original works were included in a two-volume collection entitled Correspondence (published in 1822, second edition in 1839), which contained moral and instructive reflections and interpretations of Johann Arndt’s ideas.
Of course, the Protestant ideas of Ukrainian thinkers, leading figures of the Orthodox Church could not but penetrate into secular circles. It is no coincidence that the activities of many Ukrainian educators provoked growing opposition to the Orthodox hierarchy, although formally they never broke with the church. The church’s fears were not unfounded: in Ukrainian society in the second half of the XVIII century. skepticism towards official religious thought is growing, and the desire for new spiritual dimensions and individualistic religiosity is becoming more pronounced.
Some, albeit less, influence of Protestant-pietistic ideas in the educational process in Ukraine is observed at the beginning of the XIX century. However, in Kyiv it stops. The academy at that time lost its free-thinking traditions. In the 20s of the XIX century. The newly established (1805) Kharkiv University became the center of advanced education in Ukrainefl. It brings together a galaxy of reformist teachers who bring the ideas of German idealism (Wolf, Kant, Fichte, Schelling, Hegel) and romanticism (Goethe, Heine, Lessing). Among them the most famous are Johann-Baptist Shad, Ludwig Heinrich-Jakob (publisher of Mikhail Poletika’s book “Philosophical Attempts at Man”, published in Halle), Johann Kroneberg, Andriy Dudrovych.
The exponents of this philosophical current were Lviv professor Petro Lodiy and Kant’s first translator into Russian, Yakiv Ruban. Although some of the advanced professors belonged to various Protestant churches, her appeal to German philosophy had its own value, it was called for educational purposes. Quite rightly, Chizhevsky, noting the influences of German philosophy in Ukraine, emphasized: “But these influences from the north could only support and strengthen the interests that already existed in Ukraine.”
Thus, Protestant ideological influences in national history are not limited to the Reformation. They appeared in a new, educational and pietistic form and existed, in fact, as long as Ukraine retained the potential of progressive cultural development, spiritual ties with Europe.
The growth of political and ideological reaction, the decline of scientific institutions, from which thinking professors were often simply expelled, complicated the development of religious free thought. On the wreckage of the once advanced humanistic-rationalist thought that in the XVI-XVII centuries. brought into the cultural life of Ukraine by Protestants and which in the early XIX century. refined to individual intellectual sympathies, began the formation of quasi-philosophical teachings. It was already a break with the Enlightenment tradition and a rapprochement with mysticism and obscurantism.
At the end of the XVIII century. part of the Ukrainian intelligentsia became interested in Freemasonry *. It certain adapted pietistic ideas, and those that came, so to speak, from the lower pietistic stream, continued the traditions of Jacob Spener, the practice of sectarian-ascetic circles. In Ukraine, the connection between Freemasonry and pietism was manifested in the creation of an atmosphere of special piety, God-seeking, and regular appeals to religious and mystical teachings.
Freemasonry penetrates into Ukraine, primarily from Russia, where it originated in 1731, as well as from Europe. Perhaps the most famous Masonic missionary who served in Ukraine before arriving in St. Petersburg was Ignatius-Aurelius Fessler, a pupil of the Catholic Capuchin Order, then a reformer of Masonic lodges in Poland and Russia, and later a Lutheran superintendent in Saratov.
Fessler is a philosopher and linguist by profession (author of the History of Hungary and the treatise Degrees of Knowledge), as well as, like most pietists, a connoisseur of the Jewish language and culture. It is interesting that it was in Lviv in 1783, as a university professor of Oriental languages and Old Testament hermeneutics (interpretation of ancient texts), that Fessler entered Freemasonry.
Probably, this was one of the first lodges in Ukraine. Lviv scholars Lodiy, Balugyansky, Orlay, Bek, Pavsky, and Vetrynsky, who later moved to the Russian capital, became Fessler’s supporters. These figures are representatives of the early current in Freemasonry, which sought to keep this movement from dubious mythology and professed many advanced political and philosophical-rationalist ideas.
For example, during his teaching at St. Petersburg Theological Seminary, Fessler was accused of wanting to spread Socinian doctrine among his students, and whoever read the third part of his manuscript entitled Critical History of Freemasonry would not argue that he was rightly accused of “30.
There is very little information about the early Masonic lodges in Ukraine, because, in the end, the movement itself did not receive particularly developed forms. Only the names of some of them have come down to us. These are, for example, the lodge “Immortality” in Kiev (founded in 1784 by the officers’ society), the lodge in Nemyriv in Volhynia (name unknown, 1785), “Minerva” in Kremenchug (1785), “Scattered darkness” in Zhytomyr (1787), “Women’s Lodge” in Zhytomyr (1787, consisted only of women; the head of the lodge, or, according to Masonic terminology, the master of the chair was a pharmacist Wenceslas) 31, the lodge “Three Columns “in Kiev (1788; in Lviv), another lodge in Kremenchug (name unknown, 1789; master – fellow assessor Bilousov) 32.