Destruction of hell and its restoration - Leo Tolstoy - Adishhub

Destruction of hell and its restoration – Leo Tolstoy

Destruction of hell and its restoration - Leo Tolstoy

Table of Contents

I

it was at the time when Christ revealed his teaching to people.

This teaching was so clear and following it was so easy and so obviously delivered people from evil that it was impossible not to accept it, and nothing could keep it from spreading throughout the world. And Beelzebub, father and master of all devils, was alarmed. He clearly saw that his power over people would end forever, if only Christ did not renounce his preaching. He was alarmed, but not discouraged and incited the Pharisees and scribes obedient to him to insult and torment Christ as much as possible, and advised Christ’s disciples to flee and leave him alone. He hoped that the sentence to shameful execution, desecration, abandonment by all his disciples and, finally, the very suffering and execution would make Christ at the last minute renounce his teaching. And renunciation will destroy all the power of teaching.

The matter was decided on the cross. And when Christ exclaimed: “My God, my God, why did you leave me,” – Beelzebub rejoiced. He seized the fetters prepared for Christ and, putting them on his feet, adjusted them so that they could not be broken when they were put on Christ.

But suddenly the words were heard from the cross: “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing,” and after that Christ cried out: “It is finished!” And gave up the ghost.

Beelzebub realized that everything was lost for him. He wanted to take the shackles off his feet and run, but he could not move. The shackles sagged on him and held his legs. He wanted to rise on his wings, but he could not spread them. And Beelzebub saw how Christ in a bright radiance stopped at the gates of hell, saw how sinners from Adam to Judas came out of hell, saw how all the devils scattered, saw how the very walls of hell silently disintegrated on all four sides. He could no longer bear it and, with a shrill screech, fell through the cracked floor of hell into the underworld.

II

100 years have passed, 200, 300 years.

Beelzebub did not count the time. He lay motionless in black darkness and dead silence and tried not to think about what had happened, and yet he thought and powerlessly hated the culprit of his destruction. But suddenly – he did not remember and did not know how many hundred years had passed since then – he heard sounds above him, similar to the stamping of feet, groans, cries, gnashing of teeth. Beelzebub raised his head and began to listen. That hell could be restored after the victory of Christ, Beelzebub could not believe, and meanwhile the stomping, groans, screams and gnashing of teeth became clearer and clearer. Beelzebub raised his torso, picked up his shaggy legs with overgrown hooves (the shackles, to his surprise, jumped off of them) and, fluttering with their freely spread wings, began to whistle that inviting whistle, which he used to call his servants and assistants to him.

Before he had time to catch his breath, a hole opened up over his head, a red fire flashed, and a crowd of devils, crushing each other, spilled out of the hole into the underworld and, like crows falling around, sat around Beelzebub. The devils were big and small, and fat and thin, and with long and short tails, and with sharp, straight and crooked horns. One of the devils, in a cape draped over his shoulders, all naked and glossy black, with a round, beardless, beardless face and a huge saggy belly, was squatting in front of Beelzebub’s face and, now rolling, then again rolling out his fiery eyes, never ceasing to smile , waving a long, thin tail evenly from side to side.

III

“What does this noise mean?” Beelzebub said, pointing up. “What’s there?
– Everything is the same as it always was, – answered the shiny devil in a cape.
“But are there any sinners?” Asked Beelzebub.
– A lot, – answered the glossy one.
“But what about the teaching of the one I don’t want to name?” Asked Beelzebub.

The draped devil bared his teeth so that his sharp teeth were revealed, and a restrained laughter was heard between all the devils.
– This teaching does not hinder us. They do not believe in him, – said the devil in the cape.
– Why, this teaching clearly saves them from us, and he witnessed it with his death, – said Beelzebub.
– I changed it, – said the devil in the cape, quickly flapping his tail on the floor.
– How did you do it?
– He changed it so that people do not believe in his teaching, but in mine, which they call by his name.
– How did you do that? – asked Beelzebub.
– It did it by itself. I only helped.
– Tell me briefly, – said Beelzebub.

 

The devil in a cape, bowing his head, paused, as if thinking, but in a hurry, and then began to tell:

“When the terrible thing happened, that hell was destroyed and our father and our sovereign departed from us,” he said, “I went to the places where the very doctrine was preached that almost destroyed us. I wanted to see how the people who perform it live. And I saw that the people who lived according to this teaching were completely happy and inaccessible to us. They did not get angry with each other, did not indulge in female charm and either got married or married, had one wife, did not have property, they considered everything a common property, did not defend themselves by force from attackers and paid good for evil. And their life was so good that other people were more and more attracted to them. Seeing this, I thought that everything was lost, and I was about to leave. But then a circumstance happened, in itself insignificant, but it seemed to me worthy of attention, and I stayed. What happened that among these people, some believed that everyone should be circumcised and there was no need to eat what was sacrificed to idols, while others believed that this was not necessary and that one could not be circumcised and that was everything. And I began to convince both of them that this disagreement is very important and that neither one nor the other side should in any way yield, since it is a matter of serving God. And they believed me, and the arguments became fierce. Both of them began to get angry with each other, and then I began to inspire both of them that they can prove the truth of their teachings by miracles. No matter how obvious it was that miracles cannot prove the truth of the doctrine, they so wanted to be right that they believed me, and I gave them miracles. It was not difficult to arrange it. They believed everything, which confirmed their desire to be one in the truth. that this is not needed and that you can not be cut off and there is everything. And I began to convince both of them that this disagreement is very important and that neither one nor the other side should in any way yield, since it is a matter of serving God. And they believed me, and the arguments became fierce. Both of them began to get angry with each other, and then I began to inspire both of them that they can prove the truth of their teachings by miracles. No matter how obvious it was that miracles cannot prove the truth of the doctrine, they so wanted to be right that they believed me, and I gave them miracles. It was not difficult to arrange it. They believed everything, which confirmed their desire to be one in the truth. that this is not needed and that you can not be cut off and there is everything. And I began to convince both of them that this disagreement is very important and that neither one nor the other side should in any way yield, since it is a matter of serving God. And they believed me, and the arguments became fierce. Both of them began to get angry with each other, and then I began to inspire both of them that they can prove the truth of their teachings by miracles. No matter how obvious it was that miracles cannot prove the truth of the doctrine, they so wanted to be right that they believed me, and I gave them miracles. It was not difficult to arrange it. They believed everything, which confirmed their desire to be one in the truth. since it is about serving God. And they believed me, and the arguments became fierce. Both of them began to get angry with each other, and then I began to inspire both of them that they can prove the truth of their teachings by miracles. No matter how obvious it was that miracles cannot prove the truth of the doctrine, they so wanted to be right that they believed me, and I gave them miracles. It was not difficult to arrange it. They believed everything, which confirmed their desire to be one in the truth. since it is about serving God. And they believed me, and the arguments became fierce. Both of them began to get angry with each other, and then I began to inspire both of them that they can prove the truth of their teachings by miracles. No matter how obvious it was that miracles cannot prove the truth of the doctrine, they so wanted to be right that they believed me, and I gave them miracles. It was not difficult to arrange it. They believed everything, which confirmed their desire to be one in the truth.

Some said that tongues of fire descended on them, others said that they saw the deceased teacher himself and much more. They invented something that never happened and lied in the name of the one who called us liars, no worse than us, without noticing it themselves. Some said about others: your miracles are not real – ours are real, and they said about these: no, your miracles are not real, ours are real. It was going well, but I was afraid that they would see too obvious a deception, and then I invented the church. And when they believed in the church, I calmed down: I realized that we were saved and hell was restored.

IV

– What is a church? – Beelzebub sternly asked, who did not want to believe that his servants were smarter than him.

 

– And the church is that when people lie and feel that they are not believed, they always, referring to God, say: by God, what I say is true. This, in fact, is the church, but only with the peculiarity that people who have recognized themselves as a church are convinced that they can no longer be mistaken, and therefore, no matter how foolish they say, they can no longer renounce it. The church is done in the following way: people assure themselves and others that their teacher, God, in order to avoid the law revealed to them is not misinterpreted, chose special people who alone, they or those to whom they will transfer this power, can correctly interpret his teaching. So people who call themselves the church believe that they are in the truth not because what they preach is the truth, but because they consider themselves the only legal successors of the disciples of the disciples of the disciples and, finally, students of the teacher-god himself. Although in this technique there was the same inconvenience as in miracles, namely, that people could simultaneously assert each of themselves that they were members of the one true church (which always happened), but the benefit of this technique is that, as Soon people said to themselves that they were a church, and based their teaching on this statement, then they can no longer deny what they said, no matter how absurd they said and no matter what other people said.

 

– But why did the churches reinterpret the teaching in our favor? – said Beelzebub.

– And they did it because, – continued the devil in a cape, – that, recognizing themselves as the only interpreters of the law of God and convincing others of this, these people became the supreme decision-makers of people’s destinies and therefore received supreme power over them. Having received this power, they, naturally, became proud and for the most part corrupted and thus aroused the indignation and enmity of people against themselves. To fight their enemies, they, having no other weapon than violence, began to persecute, execute, burn all those who did not recognize their power. So, by their very position, they were put in the need to reinterpret the teaching in such a sense that it justified both their bad life and the cruelties that they used against their enemies. They did just that.

V

“But the teaching was so simple and clear,” Beelzebub said, still not wanting to believe that his servants would do what he did not think to do, “that it was impossible to reinterpret him. “Do with the other as you want, so that they do with you.” How to reinterpret this?

“And for this they, on my advice, used various methods,” said the devil in the cape. – People have a fairy tale about how a good magician, saving a person from an evil one, turns him into a grain of millet and how an evil magician, having turned into a rooster, was ready to peck this grain, but a good magician poured a measure of grains onto the grain. And the evil wizard could not eat all the grains and could not find what he needed. They did the same, on my advice, with the teaching of the one who taught that the whole law is to do to another what you want to do to you, they recognized 49 books as the sacred statement of the law of God, and in these books they recognized every word the product of God – the holy spirit. They poured out on a simple, understandable truth such a heap of imaginary sacred truths that it became impossible either to accept all of them, or to find in them the one that people need alone. This is their first way. The second method, which they have used with success for over a thousand years, is that they simply kill, burn all those who want to discover the truth. Now this method is already out of use, but they do not abandon it, and although they do not burn people who are trying to discover the truth, they slander them so much, so poison their lives that only very rare people dare to denounce them. This is the second way. The third way is that, recognizing themselves as the church, therefore infallible, they directly teach, when they need it, the opposite of what is said in the scripture, leaving their disciples themselves, as they want and know how, to extricate themselves from these contradictions. So, for example, it is said in the scripture: you have one teacher, Christ, and do not call anyone your father on earth, for you have one father, who is in heaven, and do not call yourself instructors, for you have one instructor – Christ, and they say: we are one fathers and we are one instructors of people. Or it is said: if you want to pray, then pray alone in secret, and God will hear you, and they teach that you have to pray in churches all together, to songs and music. Or it says in the scripture: do not swear in any way, but they teach that everyone must swear in unquestioning obedience to the authorities, no matter what those authorities demand. Or it is said: Thou shalt not kill, but they teach that one can and must kill in war and in court. Or else it is said: my teaching is spirit and life, eat it like bread. And they teach that if you put pieces of bread in wine and say well-known words over these pieces, then the bread is made by the body, and the wine is made by blood, and that eating this bread and drinking this wine is very beneficial for the salvation of the soul. People believe in this and diligently eat this stew and then, getting to us, are very surprised

– This is very good, – Beelzebub said and smiled. And all the devils burst out into loud laughter.

VI

– Do you have fornicators, robbers, murderers in the old way? – already cheerfully asked Beelzebub.
The devils, too, amused, spoke all of a sudden, wanting to show themselves before Beelzebub.
“Not in the old way, but more than before,” one shouted.
“Fornicators don’t fit in the old wards,” shrieked another.
“The robbers of today are meaner than the old ones,” shouted a third.
“Let’s not prepare fuel for the killers,” roared the fourth.
– Do not say all of a sudden. And let the one I ask answer. Who is in charge of fornication, come out and tell how you are doing this now with the disciples of the one who forbade changing wives and said that he should not look at a woman with lust. Who is in charge of fornication?
– I, – answered, crawling on the bottom closer to Beelzebub, an effeminate brown devil with a flabby face and slobbering mouth, chewing without ceasing.
This devil crawled forward from a row of others, squatted down, bowed his head to one side and, sticking a tail with a tassel between his legs, began, waving it, in a melodious voice, saying:

“We do this both according to the old method used by you, our father and sovereign, who were still in paradise and who handed over the whole human race to our power, and according to the new church method. According to the new church way, we do this: we assure people that a real marriage does not consist in what it really consists of, in the union of a man with a woman, but in dressing up in the best dresses, going into a large one arranged for this the building and there, putting on special hats prepared for this, to the sounds of different songs, walk three times around the table. We inspire people that this is the only real marriage. And people, being convinced of this, naturally believe that any union of a man with a woman outside these conditions is a simple pleasure that does not bind them to anything or satisfaction of a hygienic need, and therefore, without hesitation,

The effeminate devil bowed his flabby head to the other side and was silent, as if expecting the effect of his words on Beelzebub.

Beelzebub nodded his head in approval, and the effeminate devil continued like this:

“In this way, without abandoning the former, used in paradise, the method of forbidden fruit and curiosity,” he continued, obviously wanting to flatter Beelzebub, “we achieve the best success. Imagining to themselves that they can arrange for themselves an honest church marriage and after uniting with many women, people change hundreds of wives and thus get used to debauchery that they do the same after a church marriage. If for some reason they find some of the requirements associated with this church marriage shy, they arrange so that a second walk around the table is made, the first is considered invalid.

The effeminate devil fell silent and, wiping the drool filling his mouth with the tip of his tail, bowed his head on the other side and silently stared at Beelzebub.

Vii

– Simple and good, – said Beelzebub. – I approve. Who is in charge of the robbers?

– I, – answered, speaking, a large devil with large crooked horns, with a mustache bent upwards, and huge, crooked paws.

This devil, crawling out, like the previous ones, forward and straightening his mustache in a military manner with both paws, was waiting for the question.

“The one who destroyed hell,” Beelzebub said, “taught people to live like birds of the air, and commanded to give the caftan to the beggar and the one who wanted to take the shirt, and said that in order to be saved, one must distribute the property. How do you involve people who heard this in the robbery?

“And we are doing this,” said the devil with a mustache, throwing his head majestically back, “just as our father and master did it when Saul was elected to the kingdom. In the same way as it was suggested then, we inspire people that instead of stopping robbing each other, it is more profitable for them to allow one person to rob themselves, giving him full power over everything. The only new thing in our method is that in order to assert the right to rob this one person, we take this person to the temple, put on a special hat, put him on a high chair, give him a stick and a ball, we smear with vegetable oil and in the name of God and his son, we proclaim the person of this oil-anointed person holy. So the robbery made by this special, considered sacred, can no longer be limited. And the sacred persons, and their assistants, and all the helpers of the helpers, without ceasing, calmly and safely rob the people. At the same time, such laws and procedures are usually established under which, even without anointing, an idle minority can always rob the working majority with impunity. So, in recent years, in some states, robbery continues without the anointed ones, as well as where they are. As our father and master sees, in essence, the way we are using is the old way. What is new in it is that we have made this method more general, more hidden, more widespread in space and time, and more durable. We made this method more general by the fact that people used to submit by their own will to the one they elected, but we made it so that they now, completely independently of their desire, submit not to those they elect, but to whoever. We made this method more hidden by the fact that those who are now being robbed, thanks to the arrangement of special, indirect taxes, do not see their robbers. This method is more widespread in space because the so-called Christian peoples, not content with plundering their own, rob under various, the strangest pretexts, mainly under the pretext of spreading Christianity, and all those peoples alien to them who have something to plunder. In time, this new method is more widespread than before, thanks to the arrangement of loans, public and state: now not only living, but future generations are being robbed. We made this method more durable by the fact that the main robbers are considered sacred persons, and people do not dare to oppose them. One has only the main robber to have time to be anointed with oil, and he can already plunder calmly, whom and how much he wants. So, at one time in Russia, for the sake of experience, I planted the most vile women, stupid, illiterate and dissolute, and who, according to their own laws, did not have any rights, one after another. The last one is not only a libertine, but a criminal who killed her husband and legal heir. And people, just because she was anointed, did not rip out her nostrils and flog her with a whip, as they did with all the male killers, but for thirty years slavishly obeyed her, leaving her and her countless lovers to rob not only their property, but also freedom of people. So in our time, obvious robberies, that is, the removal by force of a wallet, horse, clothing, make up hardly one millionth of all those legitimate robberies that are constantly committed by people who have the opportunity to do this. In our time, robberies are unpunished,

VIII

– Well, that’s good, – said Beelzebub. – But murders? Who’s in charge of the murder?

– I, – answered, emerging from the crowd, a red, blood-colored devil with fangs sticking out of his mouth, sharp horns and a thick, motionless tail raised upward.

– How do you force the disciples to be murderers of the one who said: do not return evil for evil, love your enemies? How do you make murderers out of these people?

– We do it in the old way, – the red devil answered in a deafening, cracking voice, – arousing in people self-interest, enthusiasm, hatred, revenge, pride. And in the same way, in the old way, we convince the teachers of people that the best way to wean people from killing is for the teachers themselves to publicly kill those who killed. This method does not so much give us killers as prepares them for us. A larger number gave and still gives us a new teaching about the infallibility of the church, about Christian marriage and about Christian equality. The doctrine of the infallibility of the church gave us the greatest number of murderers in the past. People who recognized themselves as members of an infallible church believed that allowing false interpreters of the doctrine to corrupt people was a crime, and that therefore the murder of such people was a deed acceptable to God. And they killed entire populations and executed, burned hundreds of thousands of people. At the same time, it is funny that those who executed and burned people who began to understand the true teaching, considered these most dangerous people for us to be our servants, that is, servants of the devils. Those who executed and burned at the stake, who were really our humble servants, considered themselves holy executors of the will of God. So it was in the old days. In our time, a very large number of murderers teach us about Christian marriage and about equality. The teaching on marriage gives us, first, the murder of spouses by each other and by the mothers of children. Husbands and wives kill each other when they find certain requirements of the law and custom of church marriage shy. Mothers kill children for the most part when the connections from which the children originated are not recognized as a marriage. Such murders are committed constantly and evenly. The murders, caused by the Christian doctrine of equality, are performed periodically, but when they are done, they are performed in very large numbers. According to this doctrine, people are taught that they are all equal before the law. The robbed people feel that this is not true. They see that this equality before the law consists only in the fact that it is convenient for robbers to continue robbing, but it is inconvenient for them to do so, and they are indignant and attack their robbers. And then mutual murders begin, which sometimes give us tens of thousands of murderers at once. that it is convenient for the robbers to continue to rob, it is inconvenient for them to do so, and they are indignant and attack their robbers. And then mutual murders begin, which sometimes give us tens of thousands of murderers at once. that it is convenient for the robbers to continue to rob, it is inconvenient for them to do so, and they are indignant and attack their robbers. And then mutual murders begin, which sometimes give us tens of thousands of murderers at once.

IX

– But murder in war? How do you bring to them the disciples of the one who recognized all people as the sons of one father and told them to love enemies?

The red devil bared his teeth, releasing a stream of fire and smoke from his mouth, and happily hit himself on the back with a thick tail.

– We do this: we instill in every people that he, this people, is the best of all in the world, Deutschland ûber allés 1, France, England, Russia ûber allés, and that this people (name) needs to rule over all other peoples … And since we instilled the same in all peoples, they, constantly feeling themselves in danger from their neighbors, always prepare for protection and become angry with each other. And the more one side prepares for defense and becomes angry with its neighbors for this, the more everyone else prepares for defense and becomes angry with each other. So now all the people who have accepted the teachings of the one who called us murderers are all constantly and predominantly busy with the preparations for murder and the murders themselves.

X

– Well, this is witty, – said Beelzebub after a short silence. – But how did the learned people, free from deception, fail to see that the church perverted the teaching and did not restore it? “And they can’t do it,” said in a self-confident voice, crawling forward, a dull black devil in a robe, with a flat sloping forehead, muscular limbs and protruding large ears.

– Why? – Beelzebub sternly asked, dissatisfied with the self-confident tone of the devil in his robes.

Not embarrassed by the shout of Beelzebub, the devil in the mantle unhurriedly calmly sat down not on his haunches like the others, but in the Oriental way, crossing his muscular legs, and began to speak without hesitation, in a quiet, measured voice:

“They cannot do this, because I constantly distract their attention from what they can and what they need to know, and direct it to what they do not need to know and what they will never know.

– How did you do it?

– I did and do I at different times, – answered the devil in the robe. – In the old days I inspired people that the most important thing for them is to know the details about the relationship between the persons of the Trinity, about the origin of Christ, about his nature, about the property of God, etc. And they argued a lot and at length, argued, argued and angry. And this reasoning so engrossed them that they did not think at all about how to live. And without thinking about how to live, they did not need to know what their teacher told them about life.

Then, when they were already so confused in these arguments that they themselves ceased to understand what they were talking about, I inspired some that the most important thing for them was to study and explain everything that was written by a man named Aristotle who lived thousands of years ago in Greece; he inspired others that the most important thing for them is to find such a stone through which they could make gold, and such an elixir that would heal from all diseases and make people immortal. And the most intelligent and learned of them all their mental powers were directed to this.

To those who were not interested in this, I suggested that the most important thing is to know: does the earth revolve around the sun or does the sun around the earth? And when they learned that the earth revolves, not the sun, and determined how many millions of miles from the sun to the earth, they were very happy and since then they have been studying the distances from the stars even more diligently, although they know that the end of these distances is not and cannot be, and that the very number of stars is infinite, and that they do not need to know this at all. In addition, I also instilled in them that it is very necessary and important for them to know how all animals, all worms, all plants, all infinitely small animals originated. And although they also do not need to know this at all and it is completely clear that it is impossible to find out, because there are as infinitely many animals as there are stars, they direct all their mental forces to these and similar studies of the phenomena of the material world and are very surprised that the more they learn of what they do not need to know, the more they remain unrecognized. And although it is obvious that as their research progresses, the area of ​​what remains for them to learn becomes wider and wider, the subjects of research are more and more complex and the knowledge they acquire is more inapplicable and inapplicable to life, this does not in the least bother them, and they are quite confident in the importance of their studies, they continue to research, preach, write and print and translate from one language into another all their mostly useless research and reasoning, and if occasionally suitable, then only for the amusement of a minority of the rich or for the worsening of the situation most of the poor. the more they learn of what they do not need to know, the more that is not recognized by them. And although it is obvious that as their research progresses, the area of ​​what remains for them to learn becomes wider and wider, the subjects of research are more and more complex and the knowledge they acquire is more inapplicable and inapplicable to life, this does not in the least bother them, and they are quite confident in the importance of their studies, they continue to research, preach, write and print and translate from one language into another all their mostly useless research and reasoning, and if occasionally suitable, then only for the amusement of a minority of the rich or for the worsening of the situation most of the poor. the more they learn of what they do not need to know, the more that is not recognized by them. And although it is obvious that as their research progresses, the area of ​​what remains for them to learn becomes wider and wider, the subjects of research are more and more complex and the knowledge they acquire is more inapplicable and inapplicable to life, this does not in the least bother them, and they are quite confident in the importance of their studies, they continue to research, preach, write and print and translate from one language into another all their mostly useless research and reasoning, and if occasionally suitable, then only for the amusement of a minority of the rich or for the worsening of the situation most of the poor.

In order for them to never guess that the only thing that is necessary for them is the establishment of the laws of life, which is indicated in the teaching of Christ, I inspire them that they cannot know the laws of spiritual life and that any religious teaching, including the teaching of Christ is error and superstition, and what to learn about how they need to live, they can from a science I have invented for them, called sociology, which consists in the study of how differently badly former people lived. So instead of themselves, according to Christ’s teaching, try to live better, they think that they only need to study the life of former people, and that they will derive from this study the general laws of life, and that in order to live well, they you will only have to conform in your life with these laws invented by them.

In order to further strengthen them in deception, I instill in them something similar to the teaching of the church, namely, that there is a certain continuity of knowledge, which is called science, and that the statements of this science are as infallible as the statements of the church.

And as soon as those who are considered scientists are convinced of their infallibility, they naturally proclaim for the undoubted truths the most not only unnecessary, but also often absurd nonsenses, from which, once having said them, they can no longer renounce.

This is why I say that as long as I inspire them with respect, subservience to the science that I invented for them, they will never understand the teaching that almost ruined us.

XI

– Very good. Thank you, – said Beelzebub, and his face beamed. “You are worth an award, and I will reward you with dignity.

“And you forgot us,” cried the rest of the motley, small, big, bow-legged, fat, thin devils in several voices.

– What are you doing? – asked Beelzebub.
– I am the devil of technical improvement.
– I am the division of labor.
– I am a means of communication.
– I am typography.
– I am art.
– I am medicine.
– I am cultures.
– I am upbringing.
– I am correcting people.
– I’m stupefying.
– I am charity.
– I am socialism.
“I am feminism,” they all suddenly shouted, pushing forward in front of Beelzebub’s face.

– Speak separately and briefly, – shouted Beelzebub. “You,” he said to the devil of technical improvements. – What are you doing?

– I inspire people that the more they do things and the sooner they do them, the better it will be for them. And people, ruining their lives to create things, make them more and more, despite the fact that these things are not needed by those who make them do, and are inaccessible to those who do them.

– Okay. Well, what about you? – Beelzebub turned to the devil of the division of labor.

– I inspire people that since things can be done more by machines than by people, then people need to be turned into machines, and they do it, and people turned into machines hate those who did it on them.

– And this is good. You? – Beelzebub turned to the devil of communication lines.

– I inspire people that for their good they need to move from place to place as soon as possible. And people, instead of improving their lives for everyone in their places, spend most of it moving from place to place and are very proud that they can travel fifty miles or more per hour.

Beelzebub praised this too.

The devil of typography spoke out. His business, as he explained, is to inform as many people as possible all the nasty and stupid things that are being done and written in the world.

The devil of art explained that he, under the guise of consolation and arousing elevated feelings in people, indulges their vices, portraying them in an attractive way.

The devil of medicine explained that their business is to inspire people that the most necessary business for them is taking care of their bodies. And since caring for their body has no end, people who care about their bodies with the help of medicine not only forget about the lives of other people, but also about their own.

The devil of culture explained that he inspires people with the fact that the use of all those affairs that are in charge of the devils of technical improvements, division of labor, communications, printing, art, medicine, is something like a virtue and that a person who uses all this can be quite pleased with himself and not trying to be better.

The devil of upbringing explained that he inspires people that they can, living badly and not even knowing what a good life is, teach children a good life.

The devil of correcting people explained that he teaches people that, being themselves wicked, they can correct wicked people.

The devil of stupefaction said that he teaches people that instead of getting rid of the suffering caused by a bad life, trying to live better, it is better for them to forget themselves under the influence of stupefaction of wine, tobacco, opium, morphine.

The devil of charity said that he, by instilling in people that by robbing in pounds and giving the robbed zolotniks, they are virtuous and do not need improvement, he makes them inaccessible to good.

The devil of socialism boasted that in the name of the highest social order of people’s life he aroused the enmity of the estates.

The devil of feminism boasted that for an even more improved arrangement of life, he, in addition to enmity of estates, also arouses enmity between the sexes.

– I am comfort, I am fashion! – other devils shouted and squeaked, crawling to Beelzebub.

“Do you really think that I’m so old and stupid that I don’t understand that as soon as the teaching about life is false, then everything that could be harmful to us, everything becomes useful to us,” Beelzebub shouted and laughed loudly. – Enough. Thank you all. – And, flapping his wings, he jumped to his feet. The devils surrounded Beelzebub. At one end of the grappling devils was the devil in the cape – the inventor of the church, at the other end – the devil in the mantle, the inventor of science. These devils gave each other their paws, and the circle was closed.

And all the devils, laughing, screeching, whistling and pounding, began, waving and flapping their tails, whirl and dance around Beelzebub. Beelzebub, spreading his wings and fluttering them, danced in the middle, lifting his legs high. Above, there were screams, crying, groans and gnashing of teeth.

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