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Korolev, S. A. Christianization as a Pseudomorphosis

Published in journal "Philosophy and Culture", 2014-8 in rubric "Philosophy of history", pages 1131-1148.

Resume: Within the framework of his concept of pseudomorphic development of Russia, the author of the present article views the most important and crucial phase of the first Russian pseudomorphosis adoption of Christianity as the national religion and Christianization of the Old Russia. The author bases himself on the supposition that Christianization was a pseudomorphic process by nature. The Russian macosociety acquired a socio-cultural cover while the cultural content, in particular, paganism, was suppressed and therefore had to develop and survive in those confines for quite a long period of time. The term pseudomorphosis was introduced by Spengler. The author of the present article views pseudomorphosis as the process imposing a certain cultural cover to macrosociety under which particular autochthonic contents or certain socio-cultural patterns, practices and life activities have to exist and develop further (or to exist and degrade). In particular, the author analyzes the phenomenon of the dual faith. The author distinguishes the dual faith developed before the Christianization of the Kievan Rus that assumed the parallel development of paganism and Christianity and the dual faith after adoption of Christianity by Vladimir Sviatoslavovich the Great when paganism existed under the Christian cover imposed on the Russian society. As a component of the pseudomorphic process the author also views the interaction between the Russian culture of chronicle writing and spoken pagan mythological tradition. The author notes that a new type of literature, the chronicle, transformed and deformed the mythological tradition created in pagan oral Russia. The author offers a term local pseudomorphoses, i.e. the pseudomorphoses appearing locally but containing all signs and mechanisms of global pseudomorphoses. As an example of the local pseudomorphosis the author studies the process of Christianization of pagan foreigners in the Volga region and the Urals in the XVIII-XIX centuries. Finally, the author analyzes a peculiar phenomenon of pseudomorphic inversion when under the influence of certain circumstances the suppressed autochthonic content revives and creates a threat to the cultural cover imposed on society. In particular, the author discusses the phenomenon of Christened Muslims leaving Orthodoxy throughout the XIX century.

Keywords: pseudomorphosis, culture, Christianization, paganism, dual faith, folk religion, Islam, inversion, chronicles, Russia, Spengler.

DOI: 10.7256/1999-2793.2014.8.12466

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