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Philosophy and Culture

On the immanentization of the religious ideal in the culture (according to "Diaries" of Protopresbyter Alexander Schmemann)

Akimov Oleg Yur'evich

ORCID: 0000-0003-0941-7382

PhD in Philosophy

Leading Researcher of the Western Branch of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA)

236016, Russia, Kaliningrad region, Kaliningrad, Artillery str., 62
Other publications by this author










Abstract: The problem of the immanentization of the religious ideal is explicated in the context of cultural history as a synchronous "movement" from idea to ideal and from ideal to idea. In the process of realizing the idea of the transcendent within the framework of the Christian tradition, its immanentization takes place – reduction to ultimate forms that can be considered based on the intuition of potential infinity (ancient tradition) and based on the intuition of actual infinity (Christian philosophy). The intuition of actual infinity is actualized in the eschatological relation to the Other, and the intuition of potential infinity in the principle of hierarchy, universal for the Christian tradition. The synthesis of these intuitions, with the predominance of one of them, is a tragedy for the Christian tradition, which determines the peculiarities of the spiritual searches of thinkers. The reflection of this tragedy in the works of Alexander Schmemann suggests a return to the "attitude" characteristic of early Christianity for the future, correlating with the preserved tradition based on hierarchy. At the same time, the philosopher's spiritual quest reflects the process of devaluation of the hierarchical principle in Christian culture, stimulating the inversion of the hierarchy, when transcendence can be realized through low-ranking humor and foolishness. The work uses the method of historical and philosophical reconstruction, which allows to identify the features of the interaction of the transcendent and immanent in certain philosophical and religious concepts. The synchronic method explicates the mutual correlations between philosophical and religious concepts belonging to the same historical period. The diachronic method makes it possible to actualize the features of the immanentization of the religious ideal in the work of thinkers belonging to different historical periods. The scientific novelty of the research lies in the combination of reflection on the relationship between the transcendent and the immanent, carried out on a rational basis by European philosophy and the study of the experience of transcendence described by specific Christian writers and thinkers (in particular St. Augustine). Thanks to this combination, the study realized the possibility of considering the relationship of the transcendent and immanent in the history of European philosophy using the logic of the symbol by A.F. Losev, when the structure of the interaction of the symbolized and the symbolizing is extrapolated to the correlation of the transcendent and immanent, and the scope of the concept of "transcendent-immanent" becomes equivalent to its content. The process of immanentization of the transcendent is considered simultaneously from the outside (from the point of view of the dialectic of concepts) and from the inside from the point of view of changing the paradigm of religious life in culture, which allows us to take into account its features.


culture, ideal, idea, immanentization, hierarchy, devolution, synthesis, Life, Christianity, reduction

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The work of Fr. Alexander Schmemann, which is a complex phenomenon, we consider as a "movement" from the particular to the general, when individual aspects point to the whole, which for the thinker are three themes or "... three levels of life, which are brought together in the liturgy: the church, the world and the kingdom of God" [1, p. 245]. At the same time, it is a movement from the general to the particular, when these topics are revealed in the "Diaries" of the thinker as a personal experience. At the center of the thinker's spiritual quest is the "living" experience of the Church[2, p.30], since in "Diaries", unlike theological works, the problem of reception of the experience of the church is posed more acutely.The thinker's reflections are an internal dialogue in which his perception of the experience of the Church is verified by the "court" of reason and conscience. 

                The focus of our research is the study of the peculiarities of internal dialogue, in which the experience of the Church and its reception in Schmemann's life coincide in a unique testimony of Christ, who revealed in the sacrament of the Church the image of a new authentic world, which is ultimately expressed in the thinker's interpretation of the phenomena of "mystery" and "symbol".  Schmemann, returning to the patristic perception of the "sacrament" and the "symbol", considers them as special forms of reality, and not as images or concepts. His intuition, according to which the world is raised to God, goes back to patristic theology (Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite, Maximus the Confessor), for whom "... for those with spiritual vision, the intelligible world appears imprinted in the sensory world through symbolic images" [3, p. 159]. For Maxim the Confessor, the ascent of man and the whole world to God is determined by the fact that "... the decadent raises Jesus, my God and Savior, filled by me with the saved, to Himself, who cannot get out of himself"[3, pp.162-163]. By the decimal Maxim the Confessor understands five pairs of combinations: mind and reason, wisdom and prudence, contemplation and doing, vision and virtue, unforgettable vision and faith[3, p. 162]; faith for him becomes the "final" point of the mind's ascent to God; at the same time, his "visual" character is noted, that is The process of ascent can be seen, considered, which determines Schmemann's vision. 

          If for Maxim the Confessor the vision is the result of ascetic exploits, then for Schmemann it is given to a person in the experience of the Church as a sacrament in which "... the symbolic is not opposed to the real, but assumes it as its direct expression and method of manifestation"[1, p. 245]. This feature of Schmemann's vision "correlates"  His search, on the one hand, is connected with the ancient tradition, for which the visual nature of perception is important, and on the other, with the key issue of the relationship between God and the world for Christianity, which, in turn, is connected with the problem of the relationship between the transcendent and the immanent. Alexander Schmemann called this epiphany of the Other[4, p. 25]. Schmemann's vision is determined by the fact that the world points to Something Else (God, the transcendent), becoming its symbol.   The interpretation of the world as a symbol of Another according to Schmemann presupposes the perception of the symbol not as a means of cognition, but as a means of participation [1, p. 243], in which the world is revealed as a sacrament "... the tragedy of post-Patristic theology lies in the fact that in it knowledge is separated from the sacrament, and the symbol is reduced to the relationship of meaning, cause and effect or to the relations of representation"[1, p.246]. The authentic ontological symbol "... reveals and conveys something else as something else, knowledge of the unknowable as the unknowable, the presence of the future as the future"[1, p. 243].  The thinker argued that "... the sacrament is a symbol correlated with Christ"[1, pp. 245-246], which allows him to "explain" the otherness of God and the reality of human involvement in him [1, p.244], therefore, the world as a symbol of God is "... a revelation of his Kingdom"[1, p.245].

           For the thinker, the symbol remains authentic to the extent of belonging to the symbolized. In this way, Schmemann's approach is close to the intuition of Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite, for whom "... the divine revealed to us is known through participation"[5, p.265].  The rationalization of the symbol according to Schmemann seems to "give out" the symbol for the symbolized, the image for the depicted.  Return  The Other, the Kingdom of God as a symbol, was for Schmemann a religious ideal - the embodiment of the eschatological idea of Christianity, which ultimately remained unrealized, as well as the ideal of L.P. Karsavin's medieval culture.    However, in the "Diaries" of the thinker, despite the "medieval" symbolism close to him, another perspective of vision is outlined, associated with the metaphysics of the New Age "... Descartes is closer to the Christian intuition of the world than mysticism"[4, p.50]. Schmemann does not resolve contradictions, but removes them, because Christianity, trying to resolve them "... failed to accept the challenge of the culture that it created itself"[4, pp.101-102]. Hence the dialogic nature of Schmemann's position regarding the multiplicity of worlds  as evidence of the unity of the world as a whole.

       The subject of our research is the vision of fr. By Alexander Schmemann of the world as an epiphany of the Other, in which it takes place."...the execution of a symbol when two realities are connected not logically, not analogically, not causally, but epiphanically"[2, p.45]. The thinker argued that reality reveals another reality to the extent that "a symbol is involved in another reality and is able to embody it"[2, p.46]. If the symbol only represents another reality, it turns out to be immanent to itself, and a symbolic immanentization of the Other takes place, which we will talk about later. The difficulty of Schmemann's position lies in the fact that for him, on the one hand, the symbol is not able to fully embody another reality (the world, being a symbol of God, is beyond him), and on the other hand, only through symbols does a person enter into the reality of the sacrament. The intuitions of the symbol and the sacrament in Schmemann's works are internally conditioned by the Christian understanding of the relationship between God and the world. In order to consider the features of this understanding expressed in the thinker's worldview, it is necessary to return to the key problem of Christian metaphysics - the relation of the transcendent and the immanent. 

           The basis for considering the relationship between the transcendent and the immanent and the correlations of the limit and the infinite, space and time associated with it is in our work the teaching of A.F. Losev about the symbol as a synthesis of the symbolized and the symbolizing. His thesis on the anthropologization of the Absolute in European metaphysics is confirmed by the reflections of J. Huizings on the immanentization of the symbol in the medieval tradition. Various aspects of the relationship between the transcendent and the immanent are considered by E. N. Trubetskoy (the problem of the non-presupposition of knowledge and its conditioning by the transcendent), S.N. Bulgakov (the problem of revelation of the transcendent in religious experience), B.P. Vysheslavtsev (the connection of the features of trancensusa with the understanding of potential and actual infinity). In modern Russian philosophy, the connotations of the immanentization of the transcendent, associated with the emphasis in European medieval metaphysics of the infinity of the Absolute, are highlighted by P.P. Gaidenko. In the works of S.S. Averintsev, it is shown how infinity gradually becomes in the Byzantine religious tradition a return to the limit, expressed in the repetition of church holidays, which was associated with a focus on the past instead of the focus on the future characteristic of early Christianity.                                

       Analyzing the history of European metaphysics, it should be noted that it is a reflection of the process of immanentization of the transcendent (A.F. Losev), the symbols of which were the limit (ancient tradition) and the infinite (Christian tradition), which conditioned the ideas about the order of the world, connected, on the one hand, with hierarchy (spatial connotation), and on the other, with the idea of the finiteness of the world (temporary connotation). Hypostasis of the transcendent generates Christian "nominalism" - indifference to the earthly needs of man, which is "... a consequence of stretching the connection between the spiritual and the spiritual"[6, p. 41].  It is no coincidence that N.O. Lossky, criticizing the sophology of V.S. Solovyov, noted that between God and the world in the Christian understanding "... lies a metalogical identity"[7, p. 148], which does not imply their inclusion in a rational relationship based on similarity. In this sense, the history of Christian culture can be seen as a balancing act between the preservation of identity and the search for similarity.  This also applies to the realization of the Christian ideal in history, what L.P. Karsavin called "... the discord between an obscurely realized idea and an realized ideal"[8, p. 136], considering the unrealization of their synthesis a tragedy of medieval culture[8, p.165].  Karsavin's vision determines, as we believe, the fate of not only medieval culture, but also Christian culture as a whole. The immanetization of the transcendent - limiting it to a specific form of culture or religion and the understanding associated with this form presupposes its "escape", in which the realized ideal carries the "generic" features of a given culture or religion (considering the transcendent outside immanentization leads to its "...actualization as an abstract idea"[9, p. 33], what determines the understanding of the transcendent as "... an elusive limit"[9, p. 32]; this was described by M. K. Mamardashvili "... a person goes to the edge of the world, out of the world  he will not get out"[10, p.26]).  The paradox lies in the fact that "absenteeism" turns into an exit, consisting either in the absolutization of the situation of choice, or in transcensuse beyond the phenomena [11, p. 185], which allows us to consider phenomena from the point of view of the transcendent (B.P. Vysheslavtsev, S.N. Bulgakov, E.N. Trubetskoy) or from the point of view of the immanent (V.A. Krasikov). 

       The understanding of the relationship between the transcendent and the immanent in Russian religious philosophy is based on a gradual movement from formal logic, in which the larger the volume of the concept, the poorer its content, to the logic of the symbol, in which the volume of the concept corresponds to the richness and concreteness of the content [12, pp. 62-63].  In the course of the immanentization of the transcendent, specific symbolic forms of its realization become autonomous, which, in relation to the late Middle Ages, was described by Johan Huizinga "... the symbol has a positive value due to the sacredness of the object it represents"[13, p.207], from which the philosopher concludes that symbolization is possible backwards when the symbol turns out to be symbolized, and "... the ambiguous becomes meaningless"[13, p. 211] (L. P. Karsavin describes a similar process "... in the center of feudal society, hierarchy is a synthesis of the natural and symbolic world order"[8, p. 71]).

          The difference between Huizinga and Karsavin's approaches is that Huizinga's symbol is separate from the symbolized and immanent to itself. For Karsavin, this possibility is not relevant due to the failure of the synthesis of metaphysical and empirical in the culture of the Middle Ages.   A similar problem concerns the relationship between the transcendent and the immanent.  In the Christian religious experience, it is characterized by "tension", which defines this relationship as the "potency" of rapprochement. In this tension, the "distinctness" of the transcendent and immanent (symbolized and symbolizing) determines their identity, and identity determines their difference "... a point of identification of the image and idea is given in the symbol"[14, p.48]. This point presupposes correlation with both the symbolized and the symbolizing (Huizinga does not give a point of convergence due to his perception of the symbol as an autonomous reality close to the artistic image).  The analogy between the transcendent and immanent, on the one hand, and the symbolized and symbolizing, on the other, is justified due to the special nature of the connection between them, since the symbol "... is not given to consciousness, but is set, it is the limit of an infinite number of interpretations"[15, p. 37]. The symbol assumes the dynamic nature of the identification of the symbolized and the symbolizing, which determines the "non-determination" of the result (this feature, in our opinion, also concerns the relationship of the transcendent and the immanent; the indefinable transcendent is determined against the background of the immanent).  

      The process of immanentization of the transcendent can be viewed from the perspective of dynamics, when the relationship of the transcendent and immanent is experienced in concrete experience as indefinable, and from the position of statics, when the relationship of the transcendent and immanent is perceived as a symbolic reality "... the transcendent is immanentized, humanized"[15, p.52]). This can also be traced in religious metaphysics, for example, in the work of St. Augustine, whose teaching about the city of God served as one of the foundations of the religious ideal of Western Christianity. In Augustine, the relationship between the transcendent and the immanent is dynamically and anthropologically colored; the idea of the transcendent is formulated based on religious experience, concretizing it "... having entered into ourselves, thinking about your creations, we went to our soul and left it in order to reach the land of inexhaustible fullness and returned to ourselves"[16, p. 615].  The paradoxical nature of this description lies in the fact that the "land of inexhaustible completeness" is both outside and inside a person.  The "limit" that the thinker reaches after leaving the soul correlates with the "beyond" country, the "border" of which he is (correlation with the border unfolds as an infinite task).

      According to Augustine, the "Land of inexhaustible fullness" is a symbol.    The symbol turns out to be transcendent; the phenomenon attains identity with its defining meaning, becoming an epiphany "... the symbol, taken as pure imagery, turns out to be in the place of the symbolized" [13, p.212]. The limit that opens the infinite becomes a boundary (you can push it to infinity, but you cannot get out of it; the limit can be crossed by entering into the infinite, to remove, but it is impossible to explicate the world correlated with the limit without the infinite lying behind it). The difficulty lies in the fact that the infinite, comprehended in a certain way, turns out to be inscribed in the limit. Leaving the border thus becomes a border (ideally implemented idea becomes a limitation;  therefore, researchers have noted the retrospective nature of medieval thinking [17, p.9]). It is not just about turning to the past, but about being closed in the limit, outside of which the coordinate system of the world is violated.  Correlation with the infinite thus becomes a system of limits that build a person's life.

     This position is confirmed by B.P.Vysheslavtsev, who analyzed the dialectic of the limit and the infinite with the help of G. Kantor's doctrine of infinity "... the potentially infinite is the infinite possibility of movement beyond each specific number by adding another unit"[11, p. 223], while "... a variable is a quantity decreasing or increasing over time the limits of any finite boundary, but remaining finite"[11, p. 223]. By the actually infinite, Cantor understands "... a constant value that lies beyond any finite value" [11, pp. 224-225]. We are talking about the justification of transcendence, in which the transcendent is not determined by the finite (on a similar principle, the possibility of cognition in the metaphysics of the unity of E.N. Trubetskoy is based "... everything conditional has a support in the unconditional"[18, p.14]; the "support" becomes that which itself has no support).  This is due to the peculiarities of Christian metaphysics, the task of which is "... the combination of a finite enclosed cosmos with the infinity of divine omnipotence"[19, p.463]. According to P.P. Gaidenko, "... Christian theology, with its teaching about a transcendent God beyond the cosmos, destroyed the primacy of the limit" [19, p.471].  But in Christian culture, human knowledge demonstrates its own ultimate character, and not the boundless character of the transcendent; the limit is not the cosmos, as it was in the ancient tradition, but the human attitude to the infinite. The "border" turns out to be an infinite horizon. A.S. Gagarin, characterizing the phenomenological topic of the Middle Ages, noted that "... it is the horizon, not the place"[20, p.223].  The horizontal nature of the medieval vision makes it possible to consider the phenomenon from the point of view of different perspectives.  For example, transcendence in "Confession" can be viewed from the point of view of the infinite (as the achievement of "... the land of inexhaustible fullness"[16, p.615], which cannot be achieved by correlating the achievement with the certainty of a place or from the point of view of the limit, emphasizing the repeatability of returning to oneself).

   The Christian tradition combined the intention of the finiteness of the cosmos and the intention of its infinity. S. S. Averintsev believed that "... the law of the cosmos was immanent to the cosmos"[21, p. 90], while the Christian God "... is on the other side of the ideal limits of the cosmos"[21, p.90].  Averintsev uses the expression  "on the other side", demonstrating the "spatial" character of the Christian cosmos ("that side" presupposes   commonality with "this" side, pointing to the ancient limit of the cosmos).  The Christian vision of the cosmos is "... a continuation of the vision of the biblical olam – the stream of temporary fulfillment, carrying all things, the stream of the cosmos as history"[21, p. 94].  

     The validity of Averintsev's position is confirmed by the vision of Blessed Augustine "... time exists in order to disappear"[16, p.669]. Augustine explicates not the world as an order, but the world as a regulated chaos created with time, which should disappear, replaced by the fullness of life in God.    The thinker does not absolutize the order, wanting to go beyond it.  Augustine's vision combines a hierarchically ultimate and an eschatologically boundless understanding of the cosmos.    Subsequently, in both the Western and Eastern Christian traditions, the eschatologically boundless vision of the cosmos becomes a spatially hierarchized assimilation into order.  In the Western tradition, the implantation ended with the fact that the church began "... to be built in the image of the empire"[8, p.10]; in the eastern tradition, "... the neutralization of the dynamic vision of the world and a partial return to the static schemes of metaphysics and myth" [21, p.99].  The transcendent infinite, as already mentioned, thereby approaches the immanent ultimate. 

   Augustine's teaching about the city of God has both an eschatological and symbolic character, according to which the earthly city indicates the eternal city [22, pp.52-53]. The earthly city ontologically exists independently of the city of God, being only its symbol, which was realized as "... a fusion of natural and symbolic order"[8, p.72]. The gradual rejection of Christianity from an eschatological perspective led to the immanentization of the symbolic order - its transformation into abstraction. Fr. Alexander Schmeman described this process as "the symbol is reduced to cognition, and cognition to final knowledge"[1, p.243] But the "mechanism" of symbolization remained unchanged, which actualized the understanding of the earthly city as a symbol of the city of God.

      A similar process took place in Eastern Christianity, where the perspective of the finiteness of the world became the certainty of a hierarchical order, the religious ideal, thus, acquires the features of a spatially oriented ancient, and not a Christian vision of the cosmos that disappears with time. S.S. Averintsev showed the features of this process, expressed in the cyclical, not eschatological character of Christian holidays, when "...the repeatability of holidays is an icon of uniqueness and its neutralization"[21, p.103]. The iconicity of the holiday indicates its eschatological content, becoming its symbol.   The symbol is immanentized, pointing to itself (the "likening" to the prototype can be endless). A similar process in relation to the modern church was recorded by Fr. Alexander Schmeman, pointing out that "... Christians, having pushed the Kingdom into the distance of time, ceased to feel it as desirable"[2, p.45]

     The immanentization of the symbol determines the de-eschatologization of Christianity - the transition of events from the world of the future to the world of the eternal [21, p.106], causing the presence of hierarchy.  It is no coincidence that Averintsev considered the interaction of the ancient and Christian visions of the cosmos in medieval culture in the form of oppositions (dichotomies) linking the ancient and Christian worldviews. The researcher distinguished the glory of God in history and in the eschatological day of Yahweh, that is, in metahistory. The parallel of the "temporal" dichotomy in the ancient cosmos is the distinction between the sensory world and the world of ideas. Along with this, in the Middle Ages, the dichotomy of the profane and the sacred is actualized, associated with the distinction between the present and the true time of the world, as well as the folk-tale confrontation of truth and falsehood [21, p.112]. In dichotomy, there is a convergence of the symbolizing and the symbolized, thus, the synthesis that L. P. Karsavin wrote about took place, causing Christianity to lose its orientation towards the future. In medieval culture, dichotomies were "... interrelated elements of a symbolic system, interchangeable in nature" [21, p.113], which makes it possible to justify the possibility of an endless ascent from one symbol to another. Each dichotomy points to the others, and they demonstrate it in the organic unity of the whole. Subsequently, due to the immanentization of the symbol, the unity of Christian culture became limited.   Each element pointed to other elements through its immanence, which was reflected in the "Diaries" of fr. Alexander Schmemann. All of the above made it possible to consider the religious ideal in European culture from the point of view of convergence of the immanentization of the transcendent (anthropologization of the Absolute) and rationalization of the symbol - its transformation from a reality that is Different into abstract knowledge, defining the phenomenon of symbolic immanentization, the features of which were described by Fr. Alexander Schmemann. 

        Fr. Alexander Schmeman captures in modern Christianity the state of things that has become the result of the immanentization of the religious ideal.  He describes his perception of Christianity as a neutral observation rather than as mysticism. Schmemann's "position" is paradoxical, since he is interested in Christianity "... tonality, not ideas"[4, p.554], which indicates that faith is for Schmemann a "space" of personal interest. It is accepted not as something external, limiting life, but as something internally defined, immanent.  Through immanence, the transcendent opens up in the work of the thinker, which thus becomes not an abstract ideal, but a concrete idea (in the work of O. Alexander Schmeman, in our opinion, a metamorphosis has taken place, the reverse of what L.P. Karsavin wrote about:  a specific idea is opposed to a ready-made ideal).

     Schmemann's experience can be described in terms of G. Kantor as a form of actual infinity, or, following Augustine, revealed as the mysticism of personality "... you were in me deeper than the depths and higher than the peaks"[16, p.504].  To describe this experience, the definition of the transcendent and immanent by Fr. Sergiy Bulgakov is suitable, in which the immanent is understood as "... what is contained within a given closed circle of consciousness, and by the transcendent what is beyond this circle or does not exist within these limits"[23, p.16]. Bulgakov brings together what does not exist in within this circle of consciousness and going beyond these limits, thereby limiting the "action" of potential infinity "... the immanent would not realize itself limited without this boundary"[23, p.16]. For him, the experience of "touching other worlds" is associated with the experience of human limitation "... in transcendence, other worlds clothe our immanence and they break into it"[23, p.16].  Here, in our opinion, the word "break in" is significant, since the thinker describes a special experience.  We are talking about the experience of transcendence, where the transubjective, that is, any cognitive act becomes transcendent, actually infinite. The thinker's "subjective" experience acquires the status of a meta-objective experience, indicating a different reality.  The transcendent thus becomes a symbol of itself, negating religious symbolism.   Bulgakov's student O. Alexander Schmeman wrote about this that "... the true mystical experience of symbols does not know, because it is utter realism"[4, p.526]. This statement means defending the transcendence of another reality (otherwise, an immanentism would have turned out, reminiscent of Eckhart's Gottheit doctrine). A similar trend was noted by A.F. Losev, arguing that  The Middle Ages was the era of the symbols themselves, not their theory[24, p.131].  

  Both Bulgakov's work and Schmemann's Diaries emphasize the limitations of human nature and at the same time emphasize its openness to the transcendent. Based on the interpretation of A.F. Losev, the symbolism of Schmemann stands closer to a religious myth than to a symbol, since the emphasis is on the substantial nature of the experience[14, p.185]. Schmemann identifies several types of symbolism: pictorial symbolism, that is, any symbol; spiritual symbolism, for example, the creations of Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite, eschatological symbolism as the attribution of everything to the Kingdom of God[4, p.685].The peculiarity of Schmemann's approach is that he reduces the meanings of visual and spiritual symbolism for the sake of eschatological symbolism - the attribution of everything in the world to the Kingdom of God.  

        If we interpret O. Alexander Schmeman's worldview in the context of A.F. Losev's teaching on the interpretative symbol, we get the following picture of the thinker's worldview. The signified (A.F. Losev) as a reduction of religion in contrast to faith, which is why Schmemann's rejection of Christianity as "... a beautiful and smooth liturgical mystery"[4, p.414], encouraging "... the cult of the past and hatred of the modern world instead of hatred of this world"[4, p.711]. The signifier (A.F. Losev) is the rejection of external piety, and the symbol is the attribution of everything in the experience of the Church to the Kingdom of God [4, p. 574]. This is related to Schmemann's use of the concept of "other" as a synonym for the concept of "transcendent" "... religion transfers a person to another dimension, another plane of being, not solving problems, but removing them"[4, p.20].

     In the ancient tradition, the other was opposed to the one, at the same time dialectically affirming it.  The study of the "Diaries" suggests that Schmemann means the transcendent through the other. The thinker carries out the "overturning" of the hierarchy, which can be compared with the change in the meaning of the concepts of limit and boundless in Ancient and Medieval philosophy. At the same time, the other becomes a symbol of the transcendent, emphasizing its inexpressible character.  Schmemann calls this the word "relatedness", highlighting cosmic, historical and eschatological relatedness in Christianity[4, p.279]. The idea of the church as the relation of the world to the Kingdom of God has the same significance for Schmemann [4, p. 478].

      The thinker, emphasizing the relation to the transcendent, points to its symbolism, "restoring" the hierarchy (the relation is not what it refers to, but has a common border with it). Schmemann expresses the transcendent as actually infinite, which has no definition in the closed coordinate system of the finite cosmos.  Symbolization as belonging to the transcendent Kingdom of God is possible through everything, since the form of correlation is the world. This, on the one hand, gives Schmemann's vision "advantages", and on the other, poses problems. The "advantage" is the possibility of symbolization as belonging to the Kingdom of God through nature. In Schmemann's descriptions of nature, the transience of the world is emphasized, with the help of which the relationship to the other is demonstrated. At the same time, these descriptions are outwardly "empty", not objectified (in our opinion, such a vision of the symbolization of the other is a premonition of the secular desymbolization of the world).Schmemann writes about the denial of hierarchy as a characteristic feature of the present time [4, p.743]. The hierarchy, which is a feature of the medieval world, shows that Schmemann's "desymbolization" was a new form of equivalence between the oppositions of Christian myth (in our opinion, Schmemann's vision of Christianity is peculiar not as a symbol when the points of convergence of the symbolized and the symbolizing are visible, but rather a symbol "rolled up" in individual things as the Very Very of these things).For Schmemann, the unfolding of otherness as a symbol that takes place in the liturgical life of the church carries with it the "danger" of the immanentization of the transcendent - the loss of the limit as a human limitation, to which the transcendent is personally revealed at the moment of meeting. Immanentization is associated both with the loss of attribution to another, and with the absolutization of a specific form of this attribution, which happens when a symbol is limited in relation to the symbolized by the relations of the signified and the signifier, cause and effect or representativeness[1, p.242]    

      Fr. Alexander Schmeman described in the Diaries the process of the immanentization of the Other, touching on certain aspects of the life of the world and the church. In order to show the specific aspects of this process, we have identified a number of forms     the symbolic immanentization of the Other: immanentization through religion, immanentization through rationality (scholasticism), immanentization through the absolutization of the past, immanentization through the church (ecclesiasticism), immanentization through resentment, immanentization through the sacralization of place, immanentization through everyday life.

    The symbolic immanentization of the Other through religion is perceived by Schmemann as a loss of faith "... Christianity crumbles into religion"[4, p.10] Based on the content of the "Diaries", it can be assumed that Schmemann understands religion like S.N. Bulgakov on the basis of the Latin term religare as a connection, which the thinker calls correlation with the Other.   However, he states that "... Religion killed and kills Christ"[4, p. 813]. Religare as a connection does not always unfold in relation to Another as a symbol, but turns out to be either an isolated symbolized or an isolated symbolizing.   If religare is seen as an isolated symbolizing, then religion becomes the "conductor" of an abstract idea - national, ethnic, defining it by extraneous goals.  Achieving the goals of the world becomes a religious ideal. The difference between a religious goal and a quasi-religious goal is, according to Schmemann, the "tension" of correlation with the Other, this is not a specific term, but an indication of intention.   With the prevalence of religare as symbolizing, tension "shifts" to the earthly goal by which it is defined or comes to naught. When religare is perceived as an isolated symbolized, the content of faith is rationalized, reducing it to the fact that fr. Sergiy Bulgakov called it "....logical transcription of myth or scholasticism"[23, p.75]. For Schmemann, the intellectualization of tradition represents a Gnostic bias instead of eschatology[4, p.133]. The thinker combines the intuition of the hierarchical structure of the church and the intuition of its eschatologically directed de-hierarchization. Therefore, in Schmemann's work, opposite tendencies dialectically coincide - the tendency towards hierarchy and elitism, on the basis of which the thinker fixes that "the world hates hierarchy and elite"[4, p.57] and the tendency to "remove" hierarchy by referring everything to the Kingdom of God.  The "removal" of hierarchy occurs in Schmemann only when he encounters the Infinite (the land of inexhaustible completeness according to Augustine), while at other levels of knowledge and life hierarchy and elitism persist.  In the Diaries, Schmemann uses the image of a "short game"[4, p.379] as a reduction of higher forms of being to lower ones [25, p.114].  Hierarchy helps a person to ascend to a meeting with Another, which "allows" Schmemann, despite criticism of specific manifestations of church life, to remain a conservative. This explains the convergence of the concepts of religion and faith in the thinker "... religion is needed by the depth of human culture"[4, p.23]. The path to faith is for Schmemann a path that transcends religion, the hierarchical principle is "removed" from Schmemann as he ascends the hierarchy, returns to the world of elitism. It is no coincidence that Schmemann uses in the "Diaries" the image of a "short game" introduced by M. Scheller in the work "Resentment in the structure of morals", where the thinker describes resentment as impotence, a descending life[26, p.38], opposed to an ascending life, which implies hierarchy. This will be discussed later in the framework of the description of the symbolic immanentization of the Other through resentment.      Schmemann's forms of symbolic immanentization of the Other are epiphenomena of religion, which, losing their connection with faith as belonging to the Other, lose their connection with religion as a preliminary step of ascent to faith.    

Rationality as a form of symbolic immanentization  According to Schmemann, the other arises on the basis of religion, the thinker believed that "... if faith can be proved, then its price is a penny"[4, p. 12]. Schmemann's position is close to that of S.N. Bulgakov, for whom "... religion follows from a sense of a gap between the immanent and the transcendent"[23, p. 73] Therefore, according to Bulgakov, there remains "... a discrepancy between a living religious myth and dogma"[23, p.76], which can subsequently lead to dogmatic ossification of religion.  Rationalization as a form of symbolic immanentization preserves the possibility for revelation and the associated transition from the field of religion to the field of faith, whereas other forms of symbolic immanentization make the transition "impossible" "... religion discharges the mystery with the sacred symbolization of the world"[4, p.309], and "... in sacredness, a person places a barrier between themselves and his secret"[4, p. 311]), thereby making religion a myth.  In this case, Schmemann's position turns out to be close to that of M.K. Mamardashvili, who considered myth to be a form of rationalization of relations between culture and nature, and philosophical concepts indicating an act of transcendence[10, p.26] (for Mamardashvili, myth helps a person to "control" the world by obeying him, and in this subordination, subjugating the world to himself). Given the peculiarities of Schmemann's worldview, religion plays a similar role for him in relation to faith. It rationalizes the content of faith, adapting it to human life. In fact, Schmemann, demonstrating correlation with the Other, considers it as an eschatologically interpreted act of transcendence.  The forms of symbolic immanentization of the other, "replacing" rationality, actually deactualize the act of transcendence.

        Fr. Alexander Schmeman described this process as the conversion of Orthodox Christianity to the past, which creates the appearance of repetition of events in contrast to genuine eschatology[4, p.309], thus, one of the forms of symbolic immanentization of the Other is the absolutization of the past.     Orthodox self-consciousness explicates history, which for it is a repetition, a reliving of the past, not the future, therefore, according to Schmemann, "... the church does not have a genuine biblical sacred history"[4, p. 152]. In our opinion, Schmemann exemplifies what Averintsev called the biblical olam - the world moving in time as in history (time - history presupposes the "destruction" of a particular moment of life for the sake of seeing this moment  as part of the coming future, and not as something that goes into the past). In the Diaries, Schmemann emphasizes the prospect of the future in the present, partly following St. Augustine. He does not create an image of metahistory, which gives the transience of the world a static character "... now history in Christianity instead of eternity..." [4, p. 182] (by history, the thinker understands the past imprinted in memory and has become a tradition, and connects eternity with the future, attributed to Another).

   Worldview  At the same time, Schmemann is associated with the Byzantine tradition, in which the liturgical life is an icon of eternity.;  The faces of this icon are cyclically repeated in specific expressions of church life, thereby becoming relegated to the past. On the other hand, Schmemann emphasizes the determinism of belonging to the Kingdom of God at the present moment. This explains the thinker's skeptical attitude towards the future in the ordinary sense of the word, for example, a negative attitude towards youth, new art, etc. (perhaps this is due to the fact that youth is an opportunity for him to return to the past). The Gospel message, in contrast, opens up an extremely close, almost indistinguishable future from the present as a hope for a new one [21, p.98], by which the thinker understands a qualitatively different one that has replaced what was before. The church tradition sacralizes the "icon" of the future, suggesting the possibility of its repetition in liturgical forms (Schmemann emphasizes the eschatological nature of the sacraments performed, their connection not with the past, but with the present moment of time, which, disappearing, gives place to the Kingdom of God). 

        The position of the thinker presupposes a convergence of the symbolic experience of the sacraments and their eschatological moment "... faith is faithfulness in the invisible kingdom"[4, p.446]. Historically, Christianity has chosen a different path "... identification of eschatology with either the otherworldly or with history"[4, p.738].  In this regard, it is of interest to bring history closer (for a thinker, this is what repeats itself) with the non-worldly, with what S.S. Averintsev called the eternal in relation to the Byzantine liturgical tradition (according to Averintsev, the eternal seems to deprive the future of its tension, since it assumes the repeatability of individual moments; history "does" the same, for for which the main thing is not the moment itself, but the meaning of this moment for her). For Schmemann, the unique moment of the future coming here and now is identified with eternity, which is perceived by the thinker as a joy-filled dynamic, as opposed to the idea of eternity as static.

      The dichotomy of statics and dynamics marks for Schmemann such a form of symbolic immanentization  Other than the Church or ecclesiasticism.  The thinker emphasizes that in modern Orthodoxy "... the religion of Christ and the religion of the Church coexist"[4, p. 496].  The religion of the Church gradually acquires cyclical features in history, becoming a natural religion based on a myth that helps a person navigate the world. For Schmemann, as it was shown, religion does not teach a person to rationalize a problem, turning it into a life situation, but removes it by carrying out a different attitude in the near future.

   The symbolic immanentization of belonging to Another through ecclesiasticism, in contrast to immanentization through religion or immanentization through rationality, which leaves a person the right to choose, "replaces" the space of choice. This was facilitated by "... shifting the experience of Christianity from the eschatological to the mystical key"[4, p. 584]. Mysticism, according to Schmemann, is a form of the immanentization of faith. It is no coincidence that the thinker considered going into spirituality "... the disincarnation of the church" [2, p.58]. An adequate comment on Schmemann's intuition can be the statement of Fr. Sergiy Bulgakov that in religion it is necessary to distinguish "... the expansion of experience and the breakthrough to the transcendent" [23, p.35] (the expansion of experience is a form of its immanentization, remaining inside the boundary of the worldly, while the breakthrough removes the boundary). The intuition of "removing the boundary" is a form of "overturning" the existing order of things, although Schmemann was opposed to changes in church life. "...The death of Christianity is necessary in order for Christ to rise"[4, p.581].    It demonstrates not the need for changes in church life, but a breakthrough to the transcendent.   Schmemann realizes that gradual change (as if moving from the old to the new) implies rootedness in the old, that is, cyclicity. It makes it possible both to "increase the tension" of church life and to weaken it, thereby creating conditions for its resentment character, which allows us to consider resentment as a form of symbolic immanentization of the Other.

   M. Scheler justified the possibility of a resentful interpretation of Christianity as "... resentment simulates emotions corresponding to Christian ideas"[26, p. 78], thereby Scheler, as we believe, anticipated Schmemann's assessment of modern Orthodox Christianity. Schmemann defined his condition as the inauthenticity of everything that happens to the church "... religion invents itself so as not to disappear"[4, p.191], pointing out that the church has become "... a religious service to the world"[4, p.663]; (Scheler notes "those who serve or are under someone's control are resentful that domination"[26, p. 18]; thereby creating conditions for the formation of resentment in the church environment).  This is because the symbolic immanentization of the Other in ecclesiasticism correlates not with the linear nature of history, but with the cyclical nature of myth (A.F. Losev, S.S. Averintsev), which implies a "weakening" of church life, followed by its activation.   The Church actually lives in a history that is cyclically experienced as a myth. The cyclicity reveals the unique character of individual moments.  Church life thus becomes associated with the "easing" of tension, the inability to return to the past. At the heart of this "weakening", as we believe, lies the deviation associated with the "loss"  transcendence in relation to the world as a whole, which is given by faith, not religion.  

    Symbolic immanentization is characterized by a pattern:  each new step of it is directed at itself and only through itself at Something Else.  At the level of resentment, the connection with the Other is replaced by a resentful experience of the weakening of church life as its strengthening (Schmemann noted about various forms of this "weakening-strengthening" ... the pedal is too pressed"[4, p.666]). This remark captures the essence of Scheler's description of resentment, which is an increase in the intensity of the experience. In Christianity, this tension, which should be aimed at experiencing the finiteness of the world as the future in the present, is redirected to the past in the cyclical nature of worship, being immanentized in a separate moment. This moment, being taken as a whole, requires   "amplification" of the voltage.   Immanentization thereby violates the "law of category", according to which "... the highest category is something new in relation to the category of the lowest"[25, p.115]; the immanent "replaces" the domain of the transcendent in the resentimental experience. According to Schmemann, the marker of such substitution is the de-eschatologization of Christianity and its transformation into a "natural" religion, causing its magization[4, p.828] 

 The consequence of this "transformation" according to Schmemann is the transformation of Christianity from a religion of time into a religion of place, which determines the symbolic immanentization of the Other through the sacralization of place.  This entails the sacralization of space, expressed in "... the replacement of faith with piety, the church with sanctification"[4, p.114]. An example of this replacement, Schmemann considers "a change in the mystical feeling of the Body of Christ "... previously it was believed that Christ is in the midst of us and therefore His Body is on the Throne, now it is believed that once His Body is on the throne, then Christ is in the midst of Us"[4, p.81]. The religion of temporal relatedness, centered on the miracle of the life of Christ, thus, it becomes a religion of local relatedness. Localization is a more "complex" form of symbolic immanentization than resentment, which requires correlation with the outside world to evaluate an event or attitude to it.   Localization draws a boundary with the outside world, sacralizing it. The border is universal, because Christianity presupposes the universal sanctification of the world.   In this case, there is a "pure" immanentization, since a sacred place within its borders can change the course of time.

    The difficulty of Schmemann's position lies in the fact that he accepts liturgical iconism, which requires a special perception of time and space, at the same time realizing its cult character, gradually replacing the eschatological principle in the life of the church. Schmemann combines both trends, suggesting that iconism demonstrates the eschatological essence of referring everything to the Eucharist, and in it to the Kingdom of God.  

      In the special literature devoted to the work of fr. Alexander Schmeman, the problem of "iconism" has not been resolved, but ways to solve it have been outlined. One approach is to emphasize in Schmemann's work the "points" of divergence from the forms of tradition, the gap between the ideal and real topos[27, p.52] "compensated" by the presence of hierotopos – the golden age[27, p.55]. In our opinion, hierotopos represents a form of absolutization of the cult space as a symbolic immanentization of the Other; in it, the time factor and the associated eschatological relationship to the Kingdom of God lose their significance. The epiphenomenon of hierotopos is the idealization of various aspects of the worldly life of the lost space.  These moments begin to be perceived by tradition as the foundations of its existence. N.N. Bedina emphasizes that in culture "... the need for localization and materialization of the sacred, simultaneously with its isolation from the profane world, becomes the sanctification of the world"[28, p.160]. This determines the sacralization of the relationship between the transcendent and the immanent, developed by tradition at a specific moment in its history. Fr. Alexander Schmeman emphasized that the attempt of Orthodoxy to exist outside of history leads to the absolutization of the temporal[4, pp.76-77] (the temporal is explicated through the spatial form of the symbolic immanentization of the Other).  There is also an alternative point of view, for example, O.A. Agapov believes that eschatology is "an attitude towards the world as an icon"[29, p.13]. It is necessary to clarify that Schmemann is aware of the gap between the image and the prototype. According to Schmemann, eschatological relatedness seems to have a "limit", therefore, the thinker, as already indicated, describes nature and everyday things in their transience as a symbol of eschatology.  With reservations, one can accept the point of view of Y.V. Balakshina that, according to Schmemann, the dynamic nature of the sacrament requires a person to "... ascend to the opening reality of the kingdom of God"[30, p. 61]. Ascent, in our opinion, is based on the hierarchical nature of space, which "includes in the game" the dichotomy of the sacred and the profane, emphasizing the spatial, and not the temporal character of belonging to the Other, as in Schmemann. Localization as a form of symbolic immanentization  The other is realized in the fact that the relation to the transcendent becomes "external". This not only removes the "tension" of the relationship between the transcendent and the immanent, but also minimizes the involvement of everything in the world in this relationship; the sense of boundary with the Other is lost, making the immanent immanent as correlated with the transcendent[23, p.20].  

   With the "strengthening" of localization as the correlation of a cult with a sacred place, there is a need not only to separate the sacred space from the profane, but also to sacralize everyday life in this space (this life, unlike the "purely" religious life, which requires the realization of the logos, is based on a "pure" myth, which is not an ideal being[31, p.397] or scientific construction [31, p.401]).

    Understanding symbolic immanentization  The myth creates the Other as a sacred space, realizing the symbolic immanentization of the Other through everyday life. Myth is understood as "... a living subject-object mutual communication containing its own, non-scientific, purely mythical truth, reliability and fundamental regularity and structure" [31, p. 416]. From this definition, one can distinguish a feature that characterizes everyday life as a form of symbolic immanentization of the Other. It consists in the fact that everyday life as the realization of myth is immanent to itself and contains the above-mentioned possibilities of symbolic immanentization of the Other (immanentization through religion, immanentization through rationality, immanentization through the past, immanentization through the church and ecclesiasticism, immanentization through resentment and immanentization through the sacralization of the cult space).

   The symbolic nature of immanentization is reduced within the framework of everyday life to the fact that a specific thing or phenomenon points to itself, indicating Something Else only as a continuation of its own reality; determining the status of a phenomenon relative to Another presupposes its opposition to existing existence "... any teaching ends with mythology"[4, p.628]; mythologization means the impossibility of discovering a new, the absence of the future. The paradoxical nature of this situation lies in the fact that eschatology is focused on the finite nature of existence, behind which something new will open (the myth assumes the absolutization of one's own inner life "... the more illusory the myth, the stronger it is"[4, p.166]). In our opinion, this statement of Schmemann is understandable, based on the teachings of A.F. Losev on mythological detachment and hierarchyality[31, p.421]  The intuitions of the myth can, in accordance with the content of Schmemann's "Diaries", be extrapolated to the phenomenon of everyday life "... Christianity has subordinated itself to everyday life"[4, p.67], and "... in piety and everyday life, the church becomes an idol"[4, p.608].

   Fr. Alexander Schmeman linked the collapse of the Orthodox way of life and the collapse of faith as a religion. For him, Christianity had to defend itself due to its eschatological nature, since "... everyday life, passing through, refers everything to what is behind it"[4, p.69], and Christianity, desacralizing everyday life "... makes everything a divine way of life"[4, p.69].  Schmemann "reconstructs" the ideal of the integrity of the Church and the world[8, p.14], however, the model for him is not the City of God of Augustine, but the eschatological attribution of everything to the Kingdom of God. It transcends everything, leaving no place for existence in the mythologized form of Orthodox life.  Schmemann, emphasizing the unity of the world as belonging to Another in the eschatological Kingdom of God, at the same time actualizes the idea of a plurality of worlds characteristic of Modern culture "... from each world you can go to another world"[4, p. 64].  He realizes the vision of the unity of the world peculiar to Christian culture as an affirmation of its mysterious essence "... the denial of the world as a sacrament leads to the transformation of God into an idol"[4, p.236], thereby the symbolic immanentization of the Other, carried out to the limit, causes its absolutization.   

   According to Schmemann, the process of symbolic immanentization of the Other cannot be stopped, one can only leave the world a chance to become related to the eschatological Kingdom of God. An "example" of this relatedness becomes for the thinker "... humble divine humor"[4, p.644], with which Schmemann implements an apology for the transcendent in the world of symbolic immanentization.  The Diaries "sanction" the "inversion" of the Christian hierarchical order, in which laughter (humor) occupies a low position.    The peculiarity of the "Diaries" is that the phenomena mentioned in them are problematized, viewed from different points of view.  If we try to apply this "logic" to Christian culture as a whole, then what seemed unshakable will be called into question;  This is the case with the phenomenon of laughter, which is problematic from the point of view of the Christian value system (laughter does not bring freedom, but liberation, and a free person does not need liberation [32, p.471]). The exclusivity of Schmemann's position lies in the fact that, as a Christian believer, who is called to be free, he only strives to become one.  Humor is for Schmemann a way of expressing the Other in the world of symbolic immanentization, therefore, it is important for him to have a "neutral" zone in which the Other reveals itself - the eschatological Kingdom of God. The whole world is such a zone, therefore the Kingdom of God becomes its own symbol, which makes it possible for the "rapprochement" of Schmemann's spiritual quest and the individual intuitions of M.M. Bakhtin, who considered the grotesque image an incomplete metamorphosis[33, p.31]). 

             If we consider Schmemann's intuitions in the paradigm of the "natural" world, which Bakhtin wrote about, then belonging to the Other will be an incomplete metamorphosis, since it goes beyond the limits of existence. This point of view is confirmed by Bakhtin's statement that "... there is no finished existence in the carnival world" [33, p. 32]. Schmemann is also characterized by an aversion to complete existence, realized, for example, in the sacralization of everyday life or a ready-made liturgical form.  However, there is a significant difference between the "worlds" of Bakhtin and Schmemann: Bakhtin's world explicates the incomplete nature of becoming, and the eschatological attribution of everything to the Other according to Schmemann is complete, as it is revealed in a metahistorical event  The Resurrection of Christ. Being related to this event implies a "weakening" of the intensity of his experience, thereby reviving the hierarchical order of the world.  At the same time, the intensity of experiencing the Resurrection event "cancels" the hierarchy. In this way, the world of Schmemann resembles not only the laughing world of Bakhtin, but also the laughing world of Ancient Russia, which "... opposes ideal, not ordinary reality"[34, pp.21-22]; the laughing world, thus, removes symbolic reality, asserting it "constantly balancing on the verge of its disappearance"[34, p.41].

    It should be noted that in order to become ridiculous, the world must have "... a share of unreality" [34, pp.57-58]; as this share is "exhausted", it becomes an anti-world opposing the symbolic world. This, in our opinion, coincides with Schmemann's position, which boils down to the fact that everything is included in the experience of the Other, and at the same time this experience "escapes", not yielding to both rational fixation and dogmatization, that is, religious restriction.  Schmemann's "foolishness" becomes a "sign" of the "escape" of eschatological experience (G.P. Fedotov highlights the following features of the Old Russian fool: ascetic trampling on vanity, revealing the contradiction between deep Christian truth and superficial common sense, serving the world in the form of a kind of preaching not by word or deed, but by the power of the Spirit[35, p. 163-164]).  The fool does not show others the way of salvation, but only seeks it, demonstrating the unreliability of the search situation, its openness to both salvation and death.   For Schmemann, the "reduction" of the "positive" experience of church life, accepted by the "ordinary consciousness" of Christians, became a "sermon" not by word or deed, but by the power of the Spirit.  Schmemann, living the life of the church, looks at it as if from the outside.  This is his renunciation of superficial common sense, which seems to be another spiritual meaning of life. It is no coincidence that the thinker perceived his own life with sins and compromises as an experience of revelation of the Kingdom of God). 

    In conclusion, it should be noted that the position of Fr. Alexander Schmemann, reflected in his "Diaries", poses several problems, the solution of which is the task of Christian culture as a whole, defining the worldview of modern man. One of them is a dialogical combination of the idea of the unity of the world, characteristic of ancient and medieval culture, and the idea of a plurality of worlds, typical of modern culture. The incomplete synthesis of these ideas defines Schmemann's personal and creative intention - the exposition of the Kingdom of God as a sacrament revealed by the Church in Christian historicism – the coherence of the fate of the world and man[36, p. 197].   For Schmemann, the criterion of Christian truth is the presence of the Kingdom of God in the life of a particular person, which a priori poses the problem of interpreting symbols representing the Kingdom of God and the boundaries of symbolization in general. It is no coincidence that the thinker designates the transcendent using the concept of "Other", a close name for "Other" in the nominology of Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite.   

     The realization of the religious ideal in the life of Schmemann - man demonstrates a vision of the symbolic world of religion close to the patristic tradition, opening the way to faith and leaving room for eschatological reference to Another - the Kingdom of God as the only possible way of salvation. This path "crosses" the boundaries of natural religion, returning to man the unity of the cultural world as a tragedy of the baselessness of human existence, in which the search for God remains the only value and meaning.                                                                             






























































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27. Guseva, A.A. (2022). One Page from the Diaries of Alexandra Schmemann: about (not)the Possibility of a Golden Age. Philosophical Thought, 12, 50-63. doi:10.25136/2409-8728.2022.12.39347 Retrieved from
28. Bedina, N. N. (2018). The problem of sacred space in Protopresbyter Alexander Schmemann’s theology. Bulletin of Kemerovo University of Culture and Arts Journal of theoretical and applied research, 45(2), 155-161.
29. Agapov, Î.À. (2019). Some aspects of the influence of works by N. Berdyaev and Archpriest Sergei Bulgakov on the theology of culture of Protopresbyter Alexander Schmemann. Christian Reading, Series: Theology, Philosophy, History, 6, 10-16. doi:10.24411/1814-5574-2019-10102
30. Balakshina, I. V. (2014). Image and significance of culture in Alexander Schmemann’s Diaries. Review the Russian Christian Academy for the Humanities, 15(2), 57-64.
31. Losev, A.F. (1990). From early works. Moscow: “Pravda” Publ.
32. Averintsev, S. S. (2001). Bakhtin, Laughter, Christian Culture. In M. M. Bahtin: pro et contra. V. I. (pp. 468-483). St.Petersburg: RHGI Publ.
33. Bakhtin, M. M. (1990). The Francois Rabelais creativity and folk culture of the Middle Ages and Renaissance. 2nd ed. Moscow: Hudozhestvennaya literatura Publ.
34. Likhachev, D.S., & Panchenko, A.M. (1976). “Comic World” of Ancient Russia. Moscow: Nauka Publ.
35. Fedotov, G. P. (2000). Collected works in 12 vols. Vol. 8. Saints of Ancient Russia. Moscow: Martis Publ.
36. Schmeman, A, prot. (1993). The Historical Path of Orthodoxy. Moscow: The Pilgrim Publ.

First Peer Review

Peer reviewers' evaluations remain confidential and are not disclosed to the public. Only external reviews, authorized for publication by the article's author(s), are made public. Typically, these final reviews are conducted after the manuscript's revision. Adhering to our double-blind review policy, the reviewer's identity is kept confidential.
The list of publisher reviewers can be found here.

It is difficult to determine the subject of the article "On the question of the immanentization of the religious ideal in culture" for two reasons. Firstly, the author uses so many special philosophical terms to express non-philosophical thoughts that it is extremely difficult to understand exactly what he wants to say. The overload of the conceptual apparatus of the article puts the text on the verge of unreadability, since even a sophisticated person finds it difficult to wade through endless "immanetizations of the transcendent", "explications of the immanent" and "expositions of the ratio of the transcendent and immanent". Secondly, the text does not have a clearly defined sign of reflection. In this regard, the title of the article gives an idea of its content – this is exactly what reflections "on the question", notes "in passing", by association. Starting with a discussion of how the understanding of God through the world takes place in medieval theology, the author expands his thinking to Christianity in general. He addresses the specifics of the expression of the religious ideal in a particular epoch, which he considers through the "dichotomies of the limit and the boundless, the finite and the infinite." However, in the second half of the article, the author suddenly proceeds to evaluate Fr. Alexander Schmemann's views on Orthodoxy, the difference in understanding of the immanent by L.P. Karsavin and Y. Heisingoy, recalls the Russian emigration of the first wave. The text of the article puts the reader before the question – why is the author writing all this? The subject of the study is not reported by the author, and cannot be isolated from the text. There is no introduction in which the purpose of the study would be communicated, nor a conclusion in which, based on the conclusions, it would be possible to understand why the author conducts all his exercises, in the text, as there is no internal division. The statement of the absence in the presented text of the elements necessary for a scientific article can be continued. It does not have the purpose and objectives of the research, there is no research methodology, there is no actual research itself, since there is no movement of thought from question to answer. There is also no relevance in the article, because the author does not disclose the reason for his appeal to the topic of "immanetization of the transcendent" or the reason why the reader may be interested in thinking about "explication of the symbolic immanentization of the Other as a sacred space exposed by myth." It is impossible to draw conclusions about the novelty of the research from the text of the article. The style of the article tries very hard to be philosophical, maybe even postmodern-philosophical, as, for example, "in Terms of immanence" by Deleuze and Guattari, however, unlike the latter, it does not cause the reader to desire "deciphering". There are several examples of the author's style that demonstrate the author's deliberate avoidance of the principle of "Occam's razor" or ignoring the expression of simple thoughts in simple words. For example, the author writes: "The possibility of a resentful reinterpretation of Christian maxims...", "Hierotopos in the interpretation of A.A. Guseva, is the sacralization of the cultural and historical space of Russia lost by emigrants", "reflection on the phenomenology of the religious ideal is based on the explication of the relation to the transcendent as its semantic core." Another feature of the author's style is the mention of "intuition", say the intuition of Schmemann, Averintsev, Bulgakov, which leaves the reader wondering whether this expression is identical to, say, the statement "according to thought", "according to opinion" of Sheman, Bulgakov, etc. The bibliography of the article is quite extensive, it includes 30 titles. In addition to Schmeman, Averintsev, Bulgakov, the author actively appeals to such researchers as Heizinga, Losev, Karsvin, Mamardashvili, which, however, does not make the author's thought clearer, and the text more intelligible. In its present form, the text is very far from the form of a scientific article and cannot be recommended for publication.

Second Peer Review

Peer reviewers' evaluations remain confidential and are not disclosed to the public. Only external reviews, authorized for publication by the article's author(s), are made public. Typically, these final reviews are conducted after the manuscript's revision. Adhering to our double-blind review policy, the reviewer's identity is kept confidential.
The list of publisher reviewers can be found here.

The reviewed material is an outline of an article in which the author deals with the peculiarities of the religious worldview of A.D. Schmeman. In this case, the "sketch" indicates not the insufficiency of the material collected by the author as such, but its insufficient elaboration. The volume of the material significantly exceeds 1 a.l., therefore, the author will have to analyze the significance of the presented evidence for the disclosure of the stated topic and leave in the text only those of them that really help to understand the worldview of A.D. Schmeman. The same can be repeated with regard to bibliography: the abundance of sources indicates, again, not a deep study of the topic, but its insufficient elaboration. Surprisingly, among the three dozen sources, there was no place for either Scripture or the works of the Church Fathers. Did they not have a significance for the formation of A.D. Schmemann's worldview comparable to the meaning of the "writings" of many of the above authors, also worthy of attention, but not necessarily in connection with A.D. Schmemann? The article does not highlight the structure of the presentation, there is neither an introduction nor a conclusion, and the sequence of the evidence given can be changed without prejudice to the perception of the content, since they are not connected by a single plot. In some cases, the author departs from the principles of scientific objectivity, rushing to assess those phenomena that need thoughtful analysis, rather than hasty assessments. Let's read, for example, the following statement: "the symbolic world of contemporary Orthodoxy, outwardly pointing to Something Else, gradually became a symbol of itself, became immanentized (typo, it should stand "immanentized", – the reviewer)." Did the author seek to understand the religious worldview of A.D. Schmemann or to polemical jabs at "contemporary Orthodoxy"? There are also just obviously unsuccessful, ill-conceived expressions: "... the medieval tradition that formed Christianity as a doctrine" ("Christianity as a doctrine" was formed not by the "medieval tradition", but by the Church, the works of theologians and ascetics, the sufferings and aspirations of all believers); or: "... theoretical reflection – attribution of his reflections to the Christian tradition"(the "theoretical reflection" consists in something completely different, it is impossible to point out this "in a positive way" within the review); or: "... the tragedy of Christianity as a religion that "does not allow" either the absolute immanentization of the transcendent or the absolute transcendence of the immanent" (and why is this a "tragedy"? And didn't Christ "solve" this "task" for every believer?), etc. There are a lot of punctuation errors: "it remained unrealized like the ideal" (the comma was omitted), "Modern times than medieval traditions" (the same thing), "in which the larger the scope of the concept, the less its content" (the same thing, besides, it is customary to say not "less" but "poorer" about the content of the concept in logic), "... the perception of Christianity is more like a neutral observation than a mysticism" (three commas are omitted), "closer to a religious myth than to a symbol" (again a comma is omitted), and There are a lot of stylistically unsuccessful expressions left in the text: "paradoxically closer to metaphysics", "... conditioned ideas ..., determined ..." (these are just synonyms), "going beyond the border" ("overcoming the border"?), etc. There are also simple typos: "History is the history of Christianity", "in in conclusion, it is necessary ..." (there should be "in conclusion"), "in the life of a human Schmemann..." (a hyphen is missing?), etc. It should be noted that the author has started work on an interesting topic, but this work is not finished, I recommend sending the article for revision.

Third Peer Review

Peer reviewers' evaluations remain confidential and are not disclosed to the public. Only external reviews, authorized for publication by the article's author(s), are made public. Typically, these final reviews are conducted after the manuscript's revision. Adhering to our double-blind review policy, the reviewer's identity is kept confidential.
The list of publisher reviewers can be found here.

The era of Perestroika, with its desire for democratization and glasnost, led to a serious weakening of the official communist ideology that prevailed for almost seventy years, which could not but cause a spiritual crisis in Soviet society. As you know, various forces, including sectarians, tried to fill the vacuum. But, of course, since the late 1980s, there has been a rapid increase in the influence of traditional religions, especially Orthodoxy, which coincided with the solemn celebration of the millennium of the baptism of Russia. However, despite the great attention to Orthodoxy and, as a result, a large number of scientific papers, there is still a large field of activity for research. These circumstances determine the relevance of the article submitted for review, the subject of which is "O. Alexander Schmemann's vision of the world as an epiphany of Another in which it occurs."...The execution of a symbol is when two realities are connected not logically, not analogically, not causally, but epiphanically." The author sets out to reveal the understanding of the relationship between the transcendent and the immanent in Russian religious philosophy, as well as to analyze the question of the immanentization of the religious ideal in culture according to the "Diaries" of protopresbyter Alexander Schmeman. The work is based on the principles of analysis and synthesis, reliability, objectivity, the methodological basis of the research is a systematic approach, which is based on the consideration of the object as an integral complex of interrelated elements. The scientific novelty of the article lies in the very formulation of the topic: the author seeks to show "the features of an internal dialogue in which the experience of the Church and its reception in Schmemann's life coincide in a unique testimony about Christ, who revealed in the sacrament of the Church the image of a new authentic world, which is ultimately expressed in the thinker's interpretation of the phenomena of the "sacrament" and "symbol". Considering the bibliographic list of the article, its scale and versatility should be noted as a positive point: in total, the list of references includes 36 different sources and studies. The source base of the article is represented by the actual works of Alexander Schmemann, the works of Maxim the Confessor, Dionysius the Areopagite, etc. Of the studies used by the author, we point to the works of N.O. Lossky, M.K. Mamardashvili, A.F. Losev, B.P. Vysheslavtsev, which have become classic. Note that the bibliography is important both from a scientific and educational point of view: after reading the text of the article, readers can turn to other materials on its topic. In general, in our opinion, the integrated use of various sources and research contributed to the solution of the tasks facing the author. The style of writing the article can be attributed to a scientific one, at the same time understandable not only to specialists, but also to a wide readership, to everyone who is interested in both Christian culture in general and the religious ideal in particular. The appeal to the opponents is presented at the level of the collected information received by the author during the work on the topic of the article. The structure of the work is characterized by a certain logic and consistency, it can be distinguished by an introduction, the main part, and conclusion. At the beginning, the author defines the relevance of the topic, shows that "the return of the Other - the Kingdom of God as a symbol was for Schmemann a religious ideal - the embodiment of the eschatological idea of Christianity, which ultimately remained unrealized, as well as the ideal of the medieval culture of L.P. Karsavin." The author draws attention to the fact that "for Schmemann, the criterion of Christian truth is the presence of the Kingdom of God in the life of a particular person, which a priori poses the problem of interpreting symbols representing the Kingdom of God and the boundaries of symbolization in general." In this regard, it is very indicative of the transcendent that "the thinker designates the transcendent using the concept of "Other", a close name for "Other" in the nominology of Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite." The main conclusion of the article is that "the realization of the religious ideal in the life of Schmemann - man demonstrates a vision of the symbolic world of religion close to the patristic tradition, opening the way to faith and leaving a place for eschatological reference to Another - the Kingdom of God as the only possible way of salvation." The article submitted for review is devoted to an urgent topic, will arouse readers' interest, and its materials can be used both in courses of lectures on philosophy and in various special courses. In general, in our opinion, the article can be recommended for publication in the journal Philosophy and Culture.