Leo Tolstoy
· The Circle of Reading
Translated by Dmitry Fadeyev

January 13

Faith is the understanding of the meaning of life and the recognition of one’s duties that flow from this understanding.


Who is a good? Only the one who has faith is good. But what is faith? Faith is when one’s will is in harmony with one’s conscience, with the Universal Reason.

— Chinese Buddhism


The task of faith is not only to make a human being good. The faith of a good human being lifts him up to such heights that make everything light and joyful.

— After Lessing


One thing is necessary: to surrender yourself to God. Keep your life in order and let God unravel the skein of the world and its destinies. Let there be destruction or immortality. That which must be, will be. That which will be, will be good. A faith in goodness is the only thing a human being needs to complete the path of life.

— Amiel


There are two types of peace. There is a negative peace, which is an absence of noise and worries, the calm after a battle, after a storm. But there is also another peace, a more perfect peace of the soul, to which this first peace is only a precursor. It is that heavenly peace which understands everything and whose true name is “God’s Kingdom is within you.” This peace of the soul includes the peace which religion gives us. It is the conscious union with God and the world, a union of love with all beings, a love for everything pure and innocent, the ability to sacrifice one’s desires and interests, the participation in the soul and life of the universe, a complete harmony between one’s will and its Infinite Source. This is what constitutes a human being’s true peace and happiness.

— Channing


They say that the last day will be a day of universal judgement and that the good God will show his wrath. But nothing but good can come from a good God. Do not be afraid: the end will be full of joy.

Whatever faiths there may be in the world, the true faith is the same, and it is that God is love. And nothing but good can come from love.

— Persian wisdom


People ask: what happens after we die? To this we should reply: if you are truly speaking with your heart and not your tongue when you say: “Let your will be done on earth as it is in heaven,” i.e. both in this ephemeral life and in the eternal one, then you have no reason to think about what will happen after you die. Surrender to the will of the Infinite Being as you bless it; you know that it is love—so what are you afraid of?

As he was dying, Christ said: “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” If someone says these words not just with his tongue, but with his whole heart, then he will need nothing else.

If my soul is returning to the Father, then there cannot be anything better for it than this.


To have true faith, you must cultivate it in yourself. And in order to cultivate it, you must do the work of faith.

The essence of the work of faith lies not in great deeds, but in actions that are unnoticeable and insignificant, but which are done exclusively for God.

“We shall die alone,” said Pascal. And true life is only that life which you live alone, before God, not before people.

Do not think that you can find spiritual peace without faith.