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Раздъяконов В. С. Христианский спиритизм Н. П. Вагнера и рациональная религия А. Н. Аксакова между «наукой» и «религией» // Вестник ПСТГУ. Серия I: Богословие. Философия. 2013. Вып. 4 (48). С. 55-72.
The Russian intellectual world tends to regard Russian experimental spiritism as a rather simplistic phenomenon and stresses its positivistic character, directed at obliterating the distinction between spirit and matter, reason and faith. In this context, Spiritism is viewed as just one more component which contributed to the increasing secularization of western culture. But a detailed historical analysis of Russian experimental spiritism reveals a more nuanced and equivocal view of a discipline which juggled between science and religion. On the basis of unpublished and little known archival materials, the author of this article shows that Vagner and Aksakov, the two main proponents of Russian experimental spiritism, differed substantially in their attitude towards Christianity. Aksakov saw experimental spiritism as a way of formulating a new religion of rationality. But Vagner, on the other hand, regarded it as a way of converting unbelievers to the Orthodox faith. Discovering this basic diff erence between Vagner and Aksakov, allows the author of this article to show the link which appeared during the second half of the nineteenth century between the idea of the secularization of western society and the stereotypical impression of the essential conflict between science and religion. The marginal position of experimental spiritism to both science and religion allowed it to act on the side of both religion and science depending on the individual predispositions of its main proponents
N.P.Vagner, A.N. Aksakov, spiritism, experimental spiritism, kardecism, Christianity, science, religion, spirit, matter, reason, faith, secularization, superstition
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15. Pribytkov V. I. Spiritizm v Rossii ot vozniknovenija ego do nastojashhih dnej (Spiritualism in Russia from its Genesis till Modern Days). Saint-Petersburg, 1901.
16. Snegirev V. A. 1871. Spiritizm kak religiozno-filosofskaja doktrina (Spiritualism as Religious-Philosophical Doctrine). Pravoslavnyj sobesednik (Orthodoxy interlocutor), no. 1, pp. 12–14, 279– 316; no. 3. pp. 9–51, 142–172, 282–330.
17. Stocking G. W. 1971. Animism in Theory and Practice: E. B. Taylor’s Unpublished Notes on «Spiritualism». Man, vol. 6, no. 1. pp. 88–104.
18. Turner F. Between Science and Religion: the Reaction to Scientific Naturalism in Late Victorian England. Yale, 1974.
19. Turner F. 1978. The Victorian Conflict between Science and Religion: A Professional Dimension. Isis, vol. 69, no. 3. pp. 356–376.
20. Helmstadter R. J., Lightman B. V. (ed.) Victorian Faith in Crisis: Essays on Continuity and Change in Nineteenth-Century Religious Belief. Stanford, 1991.
21. Vagner N. P. Skazki Kota-Murlyki (Tales of the Cat Murlyka). Moscow, 1991.
22. Vagner N. P. Rasskaz o zemnoj zhizni Iisusa Hrista po Sv. Evangelijam, narodnym predanijam i uchenijam Sv. Cerkvi (Story about Jesus Christ’s Life on Earth according to St. Gospels, Folk’s Legends and Doctrine of the St. Church). Saint-Petersburg, 1908.
23. Vinitsky I. Ghostly Paradoxes: Modern Spiritualism and Russian Culture in the Age of Realism. Toronto, 2009.
Razdyakonov Vladislav
Раздъяконов В. С. Духовные авторитеты секулярного века: спиритический дневник М. П. Сабуровой // Вестник ПСТГУ. Серия I: Богословие. Философия. 2015. Вып. 6 (62). С. 55-69. DOI: 10.15382/sturI201562.55-69
The unpublished diary (around 1800 pages) by a prominent Russian spiritualist Maria Petrovna Saburova sheds light on social, psychological and ideological contexts and implications of spiritualist practice. The article analyses social relations in Saburova’s family and defines spiritualists’ practice as a sort of family crisis therapy. In Russia spiritualist theology, mostly implemented from the western spiritualist literature, contributed to women emancipation, but it wasn’t radical and used to rely on traditional patterns of social, in particular, masculine authority. Saburova’s cosmology highlights spiritualists’ critical attitude towards current social order and proposes a new spiritual bureaucracy as an ideal of possible social relations. Though in Russia as in the West authority of spirits used to be a foundation for spiritualists’ social and spiritual individualism, which led to social and gender emancipation, still, spiritualists activity took conservative stance: spiritualists followed spiritual patterns and believed that spiritual world was the only place for complete human liberation. Spiritualists used modernist discourse, talking about human emancipation from cultural and social authorities, but their both critical and positive propositions appealed to spiritual authority. Thus spiritualists’ rhetoric blended conservative authority and modern emancipation.
Russia, Social History, History of Religion, Aristocracy, XIX century, Modern Spiritualism, Gender, M. P. Saburova.

1. Brackett E. A. Materialized Apparitions. If not Beings from Another Life What Are They, Boston, 1885.
2. Braude A. Radical Spirits. Spiritualism and Women’s Rights in Nineteenth Century America, Bllomington, 2001.
3. Caroll B. E. 1997 “Spiritualist Religion and the Search for Order”, in Spiritualism in Antebellum America, Bloomington, 1997, pp. 1–15.
4. Du Prel K. Die Philosophie der Mystik, Leipzig, 1885.
5. Edmonds J., Dexter G. T. Spiritualism, New York, 1853, vol. 1; 1855, vol. 2.
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7. Isaacs E. 1983 “The Fox Sisters and American Spiritualism”, in The Occult in America: New Historical Perspectives, Urbana, 1983, pp. 79–110.
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Razdyakonov Vladislav
Раздъяконов В. С. Физиологи против Теологии: наука как источник секуляризации в идеологии научного материализма XIX столетия // Вестник ПСТГУ. Серия I: Богословие. Философия. 2017. Вып. 74. С. 27-43. DOI: 10.15382/sturI201774.27-43
Jacob Moleschott (1822–1893), Karl Vogt (1817–1895) and Ludwig Buchner (1824–1899) are known as most notorious German spokesmen on behalf of “Science” in the mid —19th century. They are labelled in Russian historiography as “vulgar materialists” and are contrasted with dialectical materialists in their attitude to philosophy and science. This article shows how they used scientifi c conceptions of human physiology for the validation of their socio-political views, in particular on the role of religion in society and on the gradual secularisation of society. The article proposes critical reassessment of the category “vulgar materialists”, typical of current Russian historiography. It also aims to demonstrate their attitude to theology, philosophy, science and religion as main categories of their discourse. Finally, the article analyses scientifi c arguments in favour of the evolutionary development of society as well as reasons for the rejection of revolutionary practice. Although both “scientifi c materialism” and “scientifi c naturalism” do not meet the criteria of scientifi c ideology, scientifi c activity promotes secularisation by means of the extrapolation of its results to the social and political spheres.
materialism, science, religion, theology, secularisation, 19th century
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Razdyakonov Vladislav
Academic Degree: Candidate of Sciences* in History;
Place of work: Учебно-научный Центр изучения религий;
ORCID: 0000-0003-3073-6476;
Email: razdyakonov.vladislav@gmail.com. *According to the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) 2011, the degree of Candidate of Sciences (Cand.Sc.) belongs to ISCED level 8 — "doctoral or equivalent", together with PhD, DPhil, D.Lit, D.Sc, LL.D, Doctorate or similar.
This research was conducted with financial support of Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration.
Раздъяконов В. С. Религиозное учение Е.И. Молоховец и православная традиция // Вестник ПСТГУ. Серия I: Богословие. Философия. 2019. Вып. 83. С. 124-140. DOI: 10.15382/sturI201983.124-140
The topic of this article is the correlation of Orthodox tradition and spiritualism in the Russian culture of the last third of the 19th — early 20th centuries. The object of the study are materials pertaining to the spiritualistic activity of Elena Ivanovna Molokhovets. The aim of the study is to reconstruct the main events of the spiritualistic activity of Molokhovets, to reveal the sources and means by which she was creating her religious doctrine, and to demonstrate the main aspects of this doctrine. The article also aims to show the dependence of this dosctine upon the Orthodox cultural context and prove through this example the main thesis about the decisive role of Orthodoxy in assimilating spiritualism as a cultural phenomenon on the Russian soil. The article proposes the following main ideas: the religious doctrine of Molokhovets had been shaped by the early 1880s; the most important sources of her doctrine are specific hermeneutics of the sacred texts and Orthodox liturgy, messages received by the medium E.F. Tyminskaya, as well as “dreams” and “visions” of Molokhovets; the topics of her doctrine reveal the desire of Molokhovets to show the unity of all possible extremities, above all of science and faith, and to get rid of the confl ict between science and religion, characteristic of the latter half of the 19th century.
Orthodoxy, spiritualism, spiritism, history of religions, history of Russia, E. I. Molokhovets, E. F. Tyminskaya
  1. Kravetskii A. (2014) “Tainaia kukhnia Eleny Molokhovets” [Hidden Agenda of Elena Molokhovets]. Kommersant» DEN’GI, 2014, vol. 37 (in Russian).
Razdyakonov Vladislav
Academic Degree: Candidate of Sciences* in History;
Place of work: Russian State University for the Humanities; 6 Miusskaya sq., Moscow, GSP-3, 125993, Russian Federation;
ORCID: 0000-0003-3073-6476;
Email: razdyakonov.vladislav@gmail.com. *According to the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) 2011, the degree of Candidate of Sciences (Cand.Sc.) belongs to ISCED level 8 — "doctoral or equivalent", together with PhD, DPhil, D.Lit, D.Sc, LL.D, Doctorate or similar.
Раздъяконов В. С. Понятие о «религии» в отечественном эзотеризме конца XIX – начала XX века (по материалам Московского спиритического кружка) // Вестник ПСТГУ. Серия I: Богословие. Философия. 2020. Вып. 89. С. 129-148. DOI: 10.15382/sturI202089.129-148
Representatives of modern spiritualism had their own ideas about “religion” as a specific phenomenon and were familiar with discussions of theologians, philosophers, and scientists about its nature. This article uses historical sources pertaining to the activity of a large association of Russian spiritualists of the early 20th century, i.e. Moscow Spiritualist Circle (later Russian Spiritualist Society). The primary materials (Doctrine of spirits and Immortality according to Asian Rosicrucians’ traditions) reveal spiritualists’ understanding of the genesis, essence, classifi cation, and future of religion. Spiritualists defi ned “religion” as the result of spirits’ activity, divided religions into more and less perfect, and argued that the best religion is Christianity. Spiritualists associated the evolution of religion with the destiny of nations and assumed that national religions, as well as polytheistic religions, represented its early forms. German idealistic philosophy infl uenced the views of the members of Moscow Spiritualist Circle on the nature of religion. Similar to those historians of religion who adhere theism, they regarded history of religion as a teleological process and thought that the comparative method would allow one to approach the understanding of the essence of religion. Spiritualists’ ontology may be defi ned as a spiritualistic monism; this being said, spiritualists regularly underlined their own adherence to theism. Members of Moscow Spiritualist Circle were familiar with contemporary psychological and anthropological theories of religion and considered mediumistic phenomena to be an empirical proof ofcertain theories. Spiritualists criticised Edward Taylor’s theory of religion and believed that it unreasonably reduced naturalism to materialism, denying the existence of the spiritual world and reducing religion to a false ideology. Spiritualists appealed to the works of William James and other scholars who devoted themselves to studying the diversity of mystical experiences. The ontology of the spiritualists can be characterised as religious naturalism which allowed one to defi ne religion as both a theological and anthropological phenomenon. Spiritualists’ views of the nature of “religion” help us expand our knowledge of the formation of the idea of religion in the late 19th — early 20th centuries.
history of religions, spiritualism, spiritism, history of Russia, P. A. Chistyakov, A. I. Bobrova
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Razdyakonov Vladislav
Academic Degree: Candidate of Sciences* in History;
Place of work: Russian State University for the Humanities; 6 Miusskaya sq., Moscow, GSP-3, 125993, Russian Federation;
ORCID: 0000-0003-3073-6476;
Email: razdyakonov.vladislav@gmail.com. *According to the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) 2011, the degree of Candidate of Sciences (Cand.Sc.) belongs to ISCED level 8 — "doctoral or equivalent", together with PhD, DPhil, D.Lit, D.Sc, LL.D, Doctorate or similar.