How should we live? Leo Tolstoy believed that the existence of God could be neither proved nor disproved and that the meaning of life lay beyond the limits of our minds. After much suffering and study, Tolstoy came to believe that the answer to the riddle of how we should live well can be found in the teachings of Jesus. The Gospel in Brief is his provocative synthesis of the four Gospels. Here, he believed, was the essential message of Jesus, a simple key to the good and purposeful life, with all the clutter and superstition of priests and theologians swept away.
`The one thing that is necessary, in life as in art, Tolstoy once said, `is to tell the truth. The Gospel in Brief is the one of the most challenging and unsettling interpretations of the significance of Jesus ever written, which has intrigued and unsettled Christians, agnostics and atheists alike. The Foreword to this new edition is by Jay Parini, author of The Last Station, the bestselling novel based on the life of Tolstoy, now a major film starring Christopher Plummer and Helen Mirren.
Leo Tolstoy (1828–1910) is the famed author of such classic Russian novels as War and Peace and Anna Karenina. In mid-life he underwent a deep moral and spiritual crisis that led him back to the Gospels in an effort to conform his life to the spirit of Christ. This volume focuses on his “spiritual writings”—autobiographical reflections on his journey of faith, Gospel commentaries, essays on the essence of Christianity, and timeless wisdom regarding the meaning of human existence.
Are you acquainted with Tolstoys Gospel in Brief? This book virtually kept me alive. If you are not acquainted with it, then you cannot imagine what an effect it can have upon a person.
- Ludwig Wittgenstein