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POL 254 Essay 2 and 3

POL 254 Essay 2 and 3 - Nathan Hoch POL 254 Dr Norris...

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Nathan Hoch POL 254 Dr. Norris E-portfolio: Essay 2 The Soviet Union had very strict regulations on the citizens within its borders, which made rebellion and any form of defiance very hard to perform. However, there was one form of defiance that has been used by people for as long as man has been around, and that is utilizing religion to perform that act. Religion was used as a tool of defiance in the former Soviet ruled lands, and even though the government tried to regulate religion, and often times were fairly successful, it was highly successful in being used as a tool of revolting. Moscow, Kyiv, Almaty, Warsaw, and Berlin are all cities that have very uniquely different religions. These religions were used as a way to revolt against the communist government that was controlling them, and sometimes this form of revolt was the only defiant structure the people had. There is no doubt religion played a huge role in the Soviet Union, one religion in particular in both Russia and Ukraine. This was the Eastern Orthodox religion, and at times the government was at odds with this religion in these places and sometimes it was not. Eastern Orthodoxy in Moscow, and Russia as a whole, is like a mountainous landscape, with many highs and lows throughout its history. However, during communist rule, orthodoxy was not only taken to the hearts of the citizens as a form of tradition, but also as a form of defiance against the Soviet government. The odds between the Eastern Orthodox faith and the Soviet government cannot be seen more clearly than through the appointment of Aleksei Trushin as the commissioner of Moscow for the Council of Russian Orthodox Church Affairs. This was a man that performed attacks against the church during his time in the secret police, and he was
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essentially given the task of controlling the church. 1 First, Trushin tried to control the amount of churches that he allowed in Moscow then began to try to change the doctrine. Roslof said it best when he wrote that Trushin thought “the church needed to be sovietized.”(Pg. 109, Roslof) This did not stop the Soviet citizens from practicing their faith, in fact many still tried to expand the church through petitions. No matter what the Soviet government tried to do, through Trushin, the people kept their faith, and openly practiced it, even when that was a very dangerous thing to do. This shows the fact that the Eastern Orthodox religion in Moscow was practiced as a way to defy the communist government. Orthodoxy in Ukraine, centered in Kyiv took a very different route. The fact that there are three different orthodox faiths in Kyiv, shows just how radical that resistance to communism was using the faith. The one variation of orthodoxy where this is most prevalent is the separate Orthodox Church in Ukraine. This church’s resurrection shows just how much communism was disliked in Ukraine and that there was open resistance to it through practicing a faith. Ukrainians
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