English version Đóńńęŕ˙ âĺđńč˙
Saint Petersburg Branch of the Russian Humanist Society
"Zdraviy Smysl" ("Common Sense") Magazine Elected Articles
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Issue 36


  • They Are Setting FireM, by Valery Kuvakin. “This was to be expected. Given the Orthodox Christians’ nationwide offensive on the secular culture, the article by Professor M. Dunaev of the Moscow Spiritual Academy attacking Academician V. Ginzburg… published in the Argumenty i Fakty weekly… seems very typical… What is especially said about it is not even the standard set if lies about reason and Atheism, but rather outright disrespect to the person who made such an important contribution to science and the benefit of the nation.


  • Atheism is not a Creed, Theology is not a Science, by Alexander Krainev. “…It is too dangerous to introduce scientific ideas into religious education… One makes another move, which is so obvious — you just lower the general education level to mach your own — theological — background.“

Extracts from verbatim report

  • Yuri Osipov, RAS President: “There are new and serious problems and difficulties in our work”. Most importantly, the Academy needs modernization. Measures envisaged include salary increases, downsizing, etc.
  • Valery Kostyuk, Academician, Chief Academic Secretary of the RAS Presidium, On the activities of the RAS Presidium and Implementation of resolutions by the RAS General Assembly in the report period. “The hardships of Russian science result primarily from factors which are external to the scientific community, namely, the catastrophic decline in budget spending, with negligible demand from manufacturers…”
  • Valery Kozlov, Academician, RAS Vice-President: “The Russian science has survived through a difficult period, and of course, there were serious losses, both for science in general and for the RAS. But the situation has changed recently. Now it’s time to make Specific plans for the future…»
  • Gennady Mesyats, Academician, RAS Vice-President, speaks about the financial stranglehold on the Academy: “If this kind of policy persists… our science will come to an end in a year or two.”
  • Andrei Fursenko, RF Minister of Education and Science: “Let’s work together…” “Even on trial you are allowed a final statement… There is explanation to all the facts…”


  • Vitaly Ginzburg, Academician and Nobel Price winner: Academy of Science that Russia Needs: What Is It Like, After All? / an afterword to the RAS General Assembly. “…One thing is for certain: Russia needs an Academy of Science which is free from any bureaucratic pressure — a national center of intellectual activity. My advice to the government is as follows: leave the Academy alone…”.
  • Garry Abelev, Academician, On the Development Logic and Scientific Reform: the Approach of Scientists and That of Bureaucrats. “Apart from plain greed and thirst for power, these contradictions are generated by the conflicting types of logic: the logic of science and the logic of market…”

“Philosophy and the Future of the Civilization” (May 24–28, 2005)

  • Viktor Sadovnichy, Rector of the Moscow State University. Presentation title: Knowledge and Wisdom in a Globalizing World: “…Wisdom always carries admonition, a warning not to do certain things. It does so based on previous experience… Science… cannot warn against learning any new knowledge.”
  • Guests arrive to the MSU Philosophy Department. A word from Vladimir Mironov, the Dean of the MSU Philosophy Department: “The Philosophic community has grown stronger, and I see this as the major achievement of the Congress, and a passport to our success in future.”
  • Final Resolution of the 4th Russian Philosophy Congress. “We appeal to Philosophers throughout Russia to be aware of their social responsibility and the importance of their work…”
  • Yuri Chorny, The Relevance of Humanism. About the Symposium, “Humanism as a System of Values: History and Modernity”, which took place within the framework of the Congress. “Summing up the discussion, RHS President Prof. V. Kuvakin described modern Humanism as openness and readiness to the revision of one’s vies and actions. Humanism, he emphasized, means free enquiry within the boundaries of Ethics, Freedom of Conscience and the constitutional foundation of the society.”


  • On May 19, 2005 the MSU Philosophy Department hosted an inter-disciplinary research and practice Round Table Meeting, “The Freedom of Conscience Issues in Science and Education”.
  • The Final Document of the Round Table Meeting. The participants note a “systemic crisis in the realization of freedom of conscience… Artificially restricted choice of worldview… is part of the nation-wide systemic crisis…”


  • Freedom of Conscience and the Way It Is Protected by NGO’s, by Sergei Buryanov, Co-Chairman of the Freedom of Conscience Institute. “At the outset of reform the Russian society cherished hopes that the ideals and values of democracy would take root… Today it is obvious that those ideals are in decline in Russia.”


  • Humanism as a Problem of Philosophy and Anthropology, by Fyodor Tsang-Kai-Si and Yevgeny Plekhanov. “…Humanism appears associated, first of all, with the teaching on human existence… Theoretical Humanism is Humanist philosophy as a theoretical worldview providing a comprehensive picture of human existence.”


  • The Breath of Prometheus. An Essay in Literature and Philosophy, by Anna Kudishina. “The Myth of Prometheus who shared his power and enlightenment with humans, gives us the hope that everything which is essentially human can be blended … with a titanic will and determination to overcome the insurmountable.”


  • The Socialization of Humanism: Valery Kuvakin reviews the collection of academic papers under the title Modern Humanism: Problems and Prospects. Irkutsk, 2004). “For me… the theme of Humanism socialization has a special attraction. Today it is probably the most important strategy of developing Humanism as an element of Russian society’s culture.”
  • The Semantic Vacuum: Dmitry Manin reviews Philosophy of Modern Natural Science. M., 2004). “Everyone has the right to pseudo-scientific fantasies… But when it comes to writing a textbook, issued with the MSU logo and properly certified by the authorities, this is unacceptable…”
  • Vladimir Piskuryov reviews Humanism and Freedom of Conscience in the Course on History of Religion (S. Mozgovoi, G. Rtishcheva, M., 2004). “The novelty of the course is the section on ‘Freedom of Conscience and the Freedom of Faith in the Context of World and National History of State-Church Relations’ ”.


  • Yulia Pavlova reflects on The Problem of Euthanasia in Law. “Euthanasia in Russia is by no means a closed issue in Russia from a legal, ethical or social point of view.”


  • Alexander Pavlov, “The Poet of Humanity”: About Creative Humanism of Alexander Hertzen. “In general, the very foundations of Hertzen’s philosophical vies may be defined with the term “Humanist”.
  • Yevgeny Novikov, The Theory of Reintegrating Shame and the Ethics of Humanism: Ways of Interaction. The concept of Australian scholar John Braithwaite in light of modern Humanism. “The way the Reintegrating shame works is… best described in Paul Kurtz’s sharp aphorism: “…To love others does not mean expecting others to wish the same things as we do, but rather being able to whish the same as they wish”.
  • Dmitry Uzlaner, Erich Fromm: Humanist Approach to Religion. It core of this religion is human being, and his freedom, development and greatness are the main values.”
  • Lilia Ivanova, Explanation of Dreams Through Natural Science, and a Criticism of Ancient Religion. “Development of natural sciences and criticism of religion are the two processes that take place in parallel, and are typical of societies in which human beings are gradually setting themselves free from fears of gods and their powers. But rationalism in spiritual culture is not the only outcome of the evolution of Greek conscience…”
  • Alexei Nilogov, Humanism is Postmodernism, “because Postmodernism correctly transforms the idea of absolute value of a human being into the idea of absolute value of humanity…”.
  • Sergei Kulikov, The Fiction of Postmodernism and the Reality: Concerning the Postmodernistic Way Solution to Modern Problems. “…Is Postmodernism capable of post-modernizing itself – that is, to comprehend itself, not as a new and universal truth, but as a specific, contextual product of a specific situation, as viewed from someone’s specific point of view?..”