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THE LIFE OF TOLSTOY

people, wishing to unite himself with them in their adoration of God. But the process of his regeneration was not yet complete. As he tells himself periodically, his soul was lifted up only to be cast down:

"What is the meaning of this spiritual ecstasy and death? I am not living when I lose belief in the existence of God, and long ago I would have killed myself but for the faint hope of finding Him. I only live when I seek and feel Him. But why am I yet seeking? a voice asked within me. Here He is. Without Him there is no life. To know God and to live are synonymous. God is life."

He was saved from despair, life returned to him—the very life force of his youth—but now it was a conscious life; he had found God, and had faith in Him. And his faith was one with that of the working people. Tolstoy himself describes the end of his search and doubts:

"I renounced the life of my circle, but I recognised that it was not life but an imitation; that the luxury in which we lived deprived us of the capacity to understand life, and in order to understand life I must understand not the mode of existence of us parasites of life, who are exceptions, but that of the toilers, those who create life and the meaning of life. The simple working people