No, really. I’m asking. I don’t know but would like to. Something’s brewing, or perhaps has already brewed. Consider these points:
Item Patriarch Kirill “warned Western governments on Sunday against legalization of same-sex marriages what he called a sign of approaching end of the world…recent initiatives in a range of countries to legalize same-sex marriages ‘is a dangerous and apocalyptic symptom’ that should not spread over to Russia”. Source.
Item World leaders should unite to end anti-Christian persecution, Vladimir Putin says. “Putin praised the growth of cooperation between the Orthodox Churches and the Russian state, saying, ‘We act as genuine partners and colleagues to solve the most pressing domestic and international tasks, to implement joint initiatives for the benefit of our country and people.'”
“He added that it was the Church that was ultimately responsible for the development and rise of ‘culture and education’ in Russia over the last 1,000 years. ‘The adoption of Christianity became a turning point in the fate of our fatherland, made it an inseparable part of the Christian civilization and helped it turn into one of the largest world powers,’.”
Item Putin signs ‘gay propaganda’ ban and law criminalizing insult of religious feelings “Putin has signed two controversial laws strengthening the penalties for ‘propagating homosexuality among minors’ and for insulting people’s religious feelings in public….[and] has signed the so-called ‘gay propaganda’ bill after the upper house, the Federation Council, approved it on June 26 and the lower house, the State Duma, on June 11.”
Item Top Russian gay activist may face lawsuit for ‘obsceneâ€™ tweets to MPs. “Thirty-four-year-old Alekseyev is one of the best-known leaders of the Russian LGBT community. He runs the gayrussia.ru web portal and represents Russia in the InterPride association, which specializes in gay pride events.” Could face fine “up to 40,000 rubles (US$1,200) or up to one year of community service.”
Item Duma approves criminalization of insulting religious feelings. “The current bill is promoted by a large part of the Russian political establishment and strongly backed by the Russian Orthodox Church whose leader has publicly accused some unnamed forces of staging attacks on faith and religion in the country.”
Item 1,025 years of Christianity: Ukraine hosts Orthodox celebrations while questioning its future. “‘This day marks the unity of our peoples,’ Russian President Vladimir Putin told Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich.”
Item In Putinâ€™s Russia, little separation between church and state. “The Russian Orthodox Church is enjoying its newfound prestige with the Russian government.”
There are dozens more like these. Most curious is Russia bucking Western culture’s trend toward government-enforced re-definitions of marriage. All enlightened peoples, save those in Russia, are submitting, many of them eagerly. (But we rarely hear about Africa and so on.)
Incidentally number one: did you see there’s two famous guys in England who are suing to force churches to perform same-sex gmarriage ceremonies? England also has close legal ties to its church. Smart money is on these guys winning.
Incidentally number two: I’ve had people here in the USA tell me, confidentially, in whispered tones, that they’re not with the program. But they don’t want the grief which comes from airing contrary opinions. They figure it’s better to ignore the whole thing.
Naturally, our press is against Russia, but only up to a point. (Journalists are nothing if not easily intimidated.) Seems to a far-off observer like myself that Putin’s manly theology is genuine. But it’s granted it might be a political ploy. Or it could be both.
But if it’s genuine on the party of its citizens, why? Why the big and growing difference? Is it just the effects of the leadership and people are used to keeping quiet in the ex-soviet paradise? Or are people genuinely reflective about these matters? I’m curious.