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A Mary T. Hoffman Commentary from


"Joyful Curmudgeon" An oxymoron?
No! I see all the beauty of God's creation and I'm joyful.  At the same time, I see all the suffering and corruption going on in the world, and feel called to help expose and end it so that we may have true peace and compassion.


Fyodor Dostoyevsky – 30 August 2008
By Mary T. Hoffman

The son of an impoverished nobleman of Lithuanian origin, Fyodor Dostoyevsky was born in 1821 in Moscow. His father held the post of resident doctor at a charity hospital, and the family had small living quarters on the hospital grounds. His mother died when he was sixteen and he entered the School of Military Engineers in St. Petersburg where he spent four unhappy years. His father was murdered by serfs and he had neither money nor friends. Literature was his favorite subject; so after resigning his position as a military draftsman, he devoted himself to writing. His years of poverty and suffering gave him keen insight and the ability to identify with the underdog, which resulted in his first novel Poor Folk, published in 1846. His most important works were written between 1859 and 1881, the year of his death: The Humiliated and Wronged (1861), Notes From the Underground (1864), Crime and Punishment (1866), The Idiot (1868), The Possessed (1871), A Raw Youth (1875), The Diary of a Writer (1876-1880), and The Brothers Karamazov (1880).

Here are a few quotations attributed to Fyodor Dostoyevsky:

“Imagine that you are creating a fabric of human destiny with the object of making men happy in the end... but that it was essential and inevitable to torture to death only one tiny creature... And to found that edifice on its unavenged tears: would you consent to be the architect on those conditions? Tell me, and tell me the truth!”
– Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov

“It is not possible to eat me without insisting that I sing praises of my devourer?”
– Fyodor Dostoyevsky

“Men do not accept their prophets and slay them, but they love their martyrs and worship those whom they have tortured to death.”
– Fyodor Dostoyevsky

“To live without hope is to cease to live.”
– Fyodor Dostoyevsky

“To love someone means to see him as God intended him.”
– Fyodor Dostoyevsky

For a large collection of quotations, visit: 

Go on to: Pork Production – 31 August 2008
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