Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn Quotes

 

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Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn Quotes 1-17 out of 17
   
At what exact point, then should one resist the communists? ... How we burned in the prison camps later thinking: what would things have been like if every security operative, when he went out at night to make an arrest, had been uncertain whether he would return alive and had to say good-bye to his family? Or if during periods of mass arrests people had simply not sat there in their lairs, paling with terror at every step on the staircase, but had understood they had nothing to lose and had boldly set up in the downstairs hall an ambush of half a dozen people with axes, hammers, pokers, or whatever else was at hand. ... The Organs [police] would very quickly have suffered a shortage of officers ... and notwithstanding all of Stalin’s thirst, the cursed machine would have ground to a halt.
Hastiness and superficiality are the psychic diseases of the twentieth century, and more than anywhere else this disease is reflected in the press.
In our country, the lie has become not just a moral category but a pillar of the State.
The line separating good and evil passes not through states, nor between political parties either - but right through every human heart.
There also exists another alliance -- at first glance a strange one, a surprising one -- but if you think about it, in fact, one which is well grounded and easy to understand. This is the alliance between our Communist leaders and your capitalists. This alliance is not new. ... We observe continuous and steady support by the businessmen of the West of the Soviet Communist leaders.
To do evil a human being must first of all believe that what he's doing is good.
Woe to that nation whose literature is cut short by the intrusion of force. This is not merely interference with freedom of the press but the sealing up of a nation’s heart, the excision of its memory.
You only have power over people as long as you don't take everything away from them. But when you've robbed a man of everything he's no longer in your power - he's FREE again.
The strength or weakness of a society depends more on the level of its spiritual life than on its level of industrialization. Neither a market economy nor even general abundance constitutes the crowning achievement of human life. If a nation’s spiritual energies have been exhausted, it will not be saved from collapse by the most perfect government structure or by any industrial development. A tree with a rotten core cannot stand.
The simple step of a courageous individual is not to take part in the lie. One word of truth outweighs the world.
A state of war only serves as an excuse for domestic tyranny.
In our country, the lie has become not just a moral category but a pillar of the State.
Socialism of any type leads to a total destruction of the human spirit.
I would like to call upon America to be more careful with its trust ... and prevent those ... because of short-sightedness and still others out of self-interest, from falsely using the struggle for peace and for social justice to lead you down a false road. Because they are trying to weaken you; they are trying to disarm your strong and magnificent country in the face of this fearful threat. ... I call upon you: ordinary working men of America ... do not let yourselves become weak.
To do evil a human being must first of all believe that what he's doing is good... Ideology - that is what gives devildoing its long-sought justification and gives the evildoer the necessary steadfastness and determination. That is the social theory which helps to make his acts seem good instead of bad in his own and others' eyes, so that he won't hear reproaches and curses but will receive praise and honors.
We didn’t love freedom enough. And even more – we had no awareness of the real situation… We purely and simply deserved everything that happened afterward.
Woe to that nation whose literature is disturbed by the intervention of power. Because that is not just a violation against "freedom of print", it is the closing down of the heart of the nation, a slashing to pieces of its memory. The nation ceases to be mindful of itself, it is deprived of its spiritual unity, and despite a supposedly common language, compatriots suddenly cease to understand one another.
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Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn Quotes 1-17 out of 17
   
 
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