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26.09.2005 | Yevhen Sverstyuk

Maidan demands that it be served!

   

Ominous storms and turbulence rage over our world in 2005.  The planet is in frenetic turmoil. While over blessed Ukrainian land a warm and sun-filled autumn has followed a luxuriant summer.

 

Yet internal ills and spiritual ailments weary and torment us. When we have no place for God in the heart, we find no peace in the soul and no harmony at home. On the fifth of September upheavals began on our Ukrainian Olympus which has truly begun to remind one of the Olympus in Kotlyarevsky’s “Aeneid”.  It was clear from all of it that the paralysis had been caused by the swan, pike and crab [from Krylov’s fable where their attempt to pull a load fail abysmally through their inability to work together].  Only the swan had not shown itself ….

 

The fact that the enemies of Ukrainian democracy were preparing for a counter-attack already in autumn 2005 was clear to everybody, even those far removed from politics.

 

It is well-known that Russia had mobilized all forces in support of Yanukovych, including its own President who was in no way bothered that these provided ready grounds for impeaching his candidate.

 

The sense that the Ukrainian people had ended the epic phase of Maidan on the verge of psychological exhaustion was felt by all.

 

One might have thought that citizens should have made efforts to defend their democracy which, had, at long last, begun to sound real. For they understood that now was the time to strengthen the fortress.  And that the task was for today and tomorrow.  The true worth of each Ukrainian politician can be seen in how seriously they understood the importance of the moment and how fully they were committed to serve and to work selflessly primarily to group together patriotic forces.

 

I would stress patriotic since throughout the entire world it is first and foremost patriotic forces which defend independence gained and which carry their banner with honour.  In such periods all self-seeking and separate actions of those in positions of responsibility are called irresponsible, if not downright treachery and pillage.  For true citizens there is no division of positions and prestigious portfolios. Instead there is a division of duties, especially important after a regime of forces which were nationally irresponsible and lawless. 

 

One false step could undermine all that has already been built.  We have before us as an eternal reminder Volodymyr Vynnychenko.  For all his failings, he would stand much higher in our estimation if we could expunge from his life story such a pitiful detail as his opposition to Simon Petlyura who had taken on his shoulders full responsibility and who became a symbol of national resistance and self-defence.

 

The higher an individual’s position, the more merciless should be his or her self-assessment, the greater his or her self-sacrifice and example of selflessness given. If someone does not understand that self-interest at that level simply does not pay, then that person does not understand where he or she has ended up and what the place if for that he or she deserves to lose

 

Passions raged on Olympus and nobody had any time for human woes.

 

Finally the explosion came when each scheming power reached its critical mass. And the disgruntlement with the regime reached a point at which by then nobody felt any pity for anyone.

 

"Let them all hang themselves!”,  people said, disgusted and disillusioned.

 

In the end, the State Secretary Oleksandr Zinchenko spoke out making accusations of organizing a coup (addressed at the most influential people around, in particular, Poroshenko, Tretyakov, Martynenko – and journalists greeted this explosive statement with applause)

 

On 8 September the President’s announcement of the government’s dismissal – and this after all was the government of participants in the Orange Revolution – was taken calmly.  In 9 months it had shown itself and yielded its fruits.

 

The little activists of Maidan have not gained even an inch in stature from power. And there is nothing worse than presenting a small person to full view and measure. 

 

On Independence Day the Minister of Culture sang a new song to the words of Vadym Kryshchenko: “Blessed shall be our government”. 

 

She thought it was an ode, but it turned out to be an epitaph.

 

One word, as the President said, new faces came to power, but the faces of power did not change …

 

Of course tomorrow there will be new appointments…

 

And here we return to the old, initial understanding that consolidates a society, to the evangelical concept of serving. Serving God by serving one another. In serving, order and harmony on earth are maintained.

 

The festival which has united us for an entire century begins with a religious service.

 

Service unites peoples, kingdoms; any army, any organization, any kind of discipline – all are held together by faithful service.

 

Senseless rebellion of pride rejects serving – yet that is the point at which serving the spirit of falsehood – and slavery – begin.

We would remind pragmatists that all history is based on serving, that the knights were the faithful servants of the sovereign.  King Friedrich II said: “I am the first servant of the State”.  At the end of the day, this was what all kings believed… Although not all provided an example of service.

 

Poets serve beauty, citizens serve truth not lies, while philosophers serve the truth … “Serve one another” – is the Apostle Peter’s call to us. All is so simple and clear.

 

In our ill-fated history faithful service has always been lacking. How many brave people refused to serve truly the One responsible – and died an ignominious death, as rebels who wanted to become atamans (Cossack leaders) of the mob? How many of them, slaves of pride and self interest, slaves of wealth and avarice, blazed brightly only to immediately flicker and fade, like the ash under the feet of descendants.

 

Hence, honoured key figures of our time, you are in the service of the State, yet your hearts are not there, but hidden away in the place where the treasures are.

They remain together with your business. And children will try to decide who is bigger – “Rochaine” or Poroshenko.

- Rochaine, of course.

- But why?

- Because Rochaine is a company.  That’s something whole and consistent. While Poroshenko is scattered between his business, our parliament and not entirely his government.

And how are children to crack the puzzle of why in the West Yulya Tymoshenko is called a billionaire, while here she is a State servant with an income of 60 thousand UH?

- It turns out there are two State servants with that name, and we don’t know which serves whom.

But we speak of the high service to our one and only Motherland, service as the measure of our life and our love.

Can people in such service compete and fight with one another?  It is clear that dedicated service precludes outside interests which divide servants and set them against one another.

High service has its opposite extreme – its parody: servile obedience … and finally, using service as a cover. Here the battle waged is treacherous and fierce.

Incidentally, aristocrats did not recognize remuneration for their service – service needed to be pure. At times the example is cited of George Washington. He, by the way, was an aristocrat who dedicated his life to the service of building democracy.

However service is not given by birth, but from created worthiness. It is a gift which is created by a life dedicated to the Absolute, to the law, principles, in a word, to all that a person considers sacred.

This begs the question whether all is sacred that a person deems to be so.

After all we have emerged from a Godless era when there was nothing sacred or holy and where, instead, the word “sacred” was kept to designate certain values which were stressed: duties, borders and others …

Serving was also cultivated – serving an idea, serving leaders and the State.

This serving was encouraged and there were plenty of those who served to the point of madness, due to a kink in their nature, by virtue of their upbringing, and also just from fear.

However for some reason or other history has not recorded any cases where someone wanted to serve an ousted idol of a leader, and has not registered any idealists of selflessness.

 

Service itself depends on God whom an individual serves. Why do people like idols? Serving them is easier and more fun because in the depths of the soul there is nothing that burns and gives pain.

Many books have been written about serving God and His Truth, and these books do not lose their power.

 

It is, in fact, from such books that we take the concepts of human greatness, about the spiritual dimensions of life’s phenomena.  And we apply these concepts to the people who are in public view.

We shall not speak about demagogues, populists, those trying their luck with pseudo-patriotism and pseudo-religion, since there can be no sense in applying high standards to people of their ilk.

However, to the people who became the favourites of the people, we cannot avoid applying high standards. There may be choice and battle of various positions however the idea of individuality and dignity is above all of this.

Ukraine is today in the grip of a severe crisis – spiritual, ministerial, pre-election or some other …

Passions have no restraints especially when people are not inclined to apply self-restraint and do not impose strict demands on themselves.

However nobility imposes obligations as do greatness of stature, position… And they impose stringent demands.  The smaller a person, the more leeway they give themselves.  Indeed this is one of the principles for selecting the higher strata: the assurance that a person under all conditions will keep to certain limits and be true to their duty. For there are no circumstances which justify everything, and there are no values which can replace honour.

Perhaps all agree with this in theory. However, so often a person who is able to subtly calculate all moves, is not able to perceive that moral stature is always the winning option. Even on the eve of elections where the game according to the rules and the game according to none have effectively the same chances. However, somewhere that unseen arbiter is still there who will at the end of the day nonetheless disqualify those who play without the rules.

The magic word “Maidan” often hovers in the air between people in high places and even those “lower-ranked”.  It hovers like one of last year’s orange ribbons with the message SOS.  Have you really forgotten what Maidan was? Or did you not understand?

Do you think that it was about chanting Yu-shchen-ko under the conductor’s scrutiny of Tomenko?

Maidan is great hope.

Maidan is ultimate trust.

Maidan is the heart of the people.

How pitiful to think that Maidan could rise up in defence of one glorified individual who had been pushed out of the game.  No, Maidan will watch how that individual rises himself.

During the months of the new regime, the simple people from Maidan have experienced so much injustice and disillusionment, that the injustice of one of those at the top is experienced as something from a virtual realm.

Maidan lives. However do not think that it has given you a lifelong mandate and is prepared to fight to the last for its heroes of yesterday.  It expects selfless commitment. Maidan has already lived through the second act and is watching you in the third.  Be aware, however, that this Maidan with its thousand eyes is very soberly observing each of those who after the festival retired from the scene and returned to their real matters, or took up their favourite games, their double games, while waving yesterday’s banner.

Do you think that Maidan does not hear with what fading voice you pronounce its name – Ukraine?

Do you think that the advances of limitless trust from there will never stop flowing?

Maidan demands that it be served!

 


The Ukrainian can be found on the Maidan website: http://maidan.org.ua/static/mai/1127466918.html

23 September 2005

Ominous storms and turbulence rage over our world in 2005.  The planet is in frenetic turmoil. While over blessed Ukrainian land a warm and sun-filled autumn has followed a luxuriant summer.

 

Yet internal ills and spiritual ailments weary and torment us. When we have no place for God in the heart, we find no peace in the soul and no harmony at home. On the fifth of September upheavals began on our Ukrainian Olympus which has truly begun to remind one of the Olympus in Kotlyarevsky’s “Aeneid”.  It was clear from all of it that the paralysis had been caused by the swan, pike and crab [from Krylov’s fable where their attempt to pull a load fail abysmally through their inability to work together].  Only the swan had not shown itself ….

 

The fact that the enemies of Ukrainian democracy were preparing for a counter-attack already in autumn 2005 was clear to everybody, even those far removed from politics.

 

It is well-known that Russia had mobilized all forces in support of Yanukovych, including its own President who was in no way bothered that these provided ready grounds for impeaching his candidate.

 

The sense that the Ukrainian people had ended the epic phase of Maidan on the verge of psychological exhaustion was felt by all.

 

One might have thought that citizens should have made efforts to defend their democracy which, had, at long last, begun to sound real. For they understood that now was the time to strengthen the fortress.  And that the task was for today and tomorrow.  The true worth of each Ukrainian politician can be seen in how seriously they understood the importance of the moment and how fully they were committed to serve and to work selflessly primarily to group together patriotic forces.

 

I would stress patriotic since throughout the entire world it is first and foremost patriotic forces which defend independence gained and which carry their banner with honour.  In such periods all self-seeking and separate actions of those in positions of responsibility are called irresponsible, if not downright treachery and pillage.  For true citizens there is no division of positions and prestigious portfolios. Instead there is a division of duties, especially important after a regime of forces which were nationally irresponsible and lawless. 

 

One false step could undermine all that has already been built.  We have before us as an eternal reminder Volodymyr Vynnychenko.  For all his failings, he would stand much higher in our estimation if we could expunge from his life story such a pitiful detail as his opposition to Simon Petlyura who had taken on his shoulders full responsibility and who became a symbol of national resistance and self-defence.

 

The higher an individual’s position, the more merciless should be his or her self-assessment, the greater his or her self-sacrifice and example of selflessness given. If someone does not understand that self-interest at that level simply does not pay, then that person does not understand where he or she has ended up and what the place if for that he or she deserves to lose

 

Passions raged on Olympus and nobody had any time for human woes.

 

Finally the explosion came when each scheming power reached its critical mass. And the disgruntlement with the regime reached a point at which by then nobody felt any pity for anyone.

 

"Let them all hang themselves!”,  people said, disgusted and disillusioned.

 

In the end, the State Secretary Oleksandr Zinchenko spoke out making accusations of organizing a coup (addressed at the most influential people around, in particular, Poroshenko, Tretyakov, Martynenko – and journalists greeted this explosive statement with applause)

 

On 8 September the President’s announcement of the government’s dismissal – and this after all was the government of participants in the Orange Revolution – was taken calmly.  In 9 months it had shown itself and yielded its fruits.

 

The little activists of Maidan have not gained even an inch in stature from power. And there is nothing worse than presenting a small person to full view and measure. 

 

On Independence Day the Minister of Culture sang a new song to the words of Vadym Kryshchenko: “Blessed shall be our government”. 

 

She thought it was an ode, but it turned out to be an epitaph.

 

One word, as the President said, new faces came to power, but the faces of power did not change …

 

Of course tomorrow there will be new appointments…

 

And here we return to the old, initial understanding that consolidates a society, to the evangelical concept of serving. Serving God by serving one another. In serving, order and harmony on earth are maintained.

 

The festival which has united us for an entire century begins with a religious service.

 

Service unites peoples, kingdoms; any army, any organization, any kind of discipline – all are held together by faithful service.

 

Senseless rebellion of pride rejects serving – yet that is the point at which serving the spirit of falsehood – and slavery – begin.

We would remind pragmatists that all history is based on serving, that the knights were the faithful servants of the sovereign.  King Friedrich II said: “I am the first servant of the State”.  At the end of the day, this was what all kings believed… Although not all provided an example of service.

 

Poets serve beauty, citizens serve truth not lies, while philosophers serve the truth … “Serve one another” – is the Apostle Peter’s call to us. All is so simple and clear.

 

In our ill-fated history faithful service has always been lacking. How many brave people refused to serve truly the One responsible – and died an ignominious death, as rebels who wanted to become atamans (Cossack leaders) of the mob? How many of them, slaves of pride and self interest, slaves of wealth and avarice, blazed brightly only to immediately flicker and fade, like the ash under the feet of descendants.

 

Hence, honoured key figures of our time, you are in the service of the State, yet your hearts are not there, but hidden away in the place where the treasures are.

They remain together with your business. And children will try to decide who is bigger – “Rochaine” or Poroshenko.

- Rochaine, of course.

- But why?

- Because Rochaine is a company.  That’s something whole and consistent. While Poroshenko is scattered between his business, our parliament and not entirely his government.

And how are children to crack the puzzle of why in the West Yulya Tymoshenko is called a billionaire, while here she is a State servant with an income of 60 thousand UH?

- It turns out there are two State servants with that name, and we don’t know which serves whom.

But we speak of the high service to our one and only Motherland, service as the measure of our life and our love.

Can people in such service compete and fight with one another?  It is clear that dedicated service precludes outside interests which divide servants and set them against one another.

High service has its opposite extreme – its parody: servile obedience … and finally, using service as a cover. Here the battle waged is treacherous and fierce.

Incidentally, aristocrats did not recognize remuneration for their service – service needed to be pure. At times the example is cited of George Washington. He, by the way, was an aristocrat who dedicated his life to the service of building democracy.

However service is not given by birth, but from created worthiness. It is a gift which is created by a life dedicated to the Absolute, to the law, principles, in a word, to all that a person considers sacred.

This begs the question whether all is sacred that a person deems to be so.

After all we have emerged from a Godless era when there was nothing sacred or holy and where, instead, the word “sacred” was kept to designate certain values which were stressed: duties, borders and others …

Serving was also cultivated – serving an idea, serving leaders and the State.

This serving was encouraged and there were plenty of those who served to the point of madness, due to a kink in their nature, by virtue of their upbringing, and also just from fear.

However for some reason or other history has not recorded any cases where someone wanted to serve an ousted idol of a leader, and has not registered any idealists of selflessness.

 

Service itself depends on God whom an individual serves. Why do people like idols? Serving them is easier and more fun because in the depths of the soul there is nothing that burns and gives pain.

Many books have been written about serving God and His Truth, and these books do not lose their power.

 

It is, in fact, from such books that we take the concepts of human greatness, about the spiritual dimensions of life’s phenomena.  And we apply these concepts to the people who are in public view.

We shall not speak about demagogues, populists, those trying their luck with pseudo-patriotism and pseudo-religion, since there can be no sense in applying high standards to people of their ilk.

However, to the people who became the favourites of the people, we cannot avoid applying high standards. There may be choice and battle of various positions however the idea of individuality and dignity is above all of this.

Ukraine is today in the grip of a severe crisis – spiritual, ministerial, pre-election or some other …

Passions have no restraints especially when people are not inclined to apply self-restraint and do not impose strict demands on themselves.

However nobility imposes obligations as do greatness of stature, position… And they impose stringent demands.  The smaller a person, the more leeway they give themselves.  Indeed this is one of the principles for selecting the higher strata: the assurance that a person under all conditions will keep to certain limits and be true to their duty. For there are no circumstances which justify everything, and there are no values which can replace honour.

Perhaps all agree with this in theory. However, so often a person who is able to subtly calculate all moves, is not able to perceive that moral stature is always the winning option. Even on the eve of elections where the game according to the rules and the game according to none have effectively the same chances. However, somewhere that unseen arbiter is still there who will at the end of the day nonetheless disqualify those who play without the rules.

The magic word “Maidan” often hovers in the air between people in high places and even those “lower-ranked”.  It hovers like one of last year’s orange ribbons with the message SOS.  Have you really forgotten what Maidan was? Or did you not understand?

Do you think that it was about chanting Yu-shchen-ko under the conductor’s scrutiny of Tomenko?

Maidan is great hope.

Maidan is ultimate trust.

Maidan is the heart of the people.

How pitiful to think that Maidan could rise up in defence of one glorified individual who had been pushed out of the game.  No, Maidan will watch how that individual rises himself.

During the months of the new regime, the simple people from Maidan have experienced so much injustice and disillusionment, that the injustice of one of those at the top is experienced as something from a virtual realm.

Maidan lives. However do not think that it has given you a lifelong mandate and is prepared to fight to the last for its heroes of yesterday.  It expects selfless commitment. Maidan has already lived through the second act and is watching you in the third.  Be aware, however, that this Maidan with its thousand eyes is very soberly observing each of those who after the festival retired from the scene and returned to their real matters, or took up their favourite games, their double games, while waving yesterday’s banner.

Do you think that Maidan does not hear with what fading voice you pronounce its name – Ukraine?

Do you think that the advances of limitless trust from there will never stop flowing?

Maidan demands that it be served!

 


The Ukrainian can be found on the Maidan website: http://maidan.org.ua/static/mai/1127466918.html

23 September 2005

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