- Paperback: 254 pages
- Publisher: Faber Faber Inc; New Ed edition (1974)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780571105069
- ISBN-13: 978-0571105069
- ASIN: 0571105068
- Product Dimensions: 4.4 x 0.7 x 7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 38 customer reviews
Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
#848,616 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #20284 in Contemporary Literature & Fiction
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Fratricides Paperback – 1974
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Against the background of the Greek civil war of the late 1940s, Captain Drakos, son of the local priest Father Yanaros, has taken to the mountains with a group of villagers and joined the Communist rebels. It is Holy Week and Father Yanaros feels that he himself is bearing the sins of the world.
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Nikos' search for more made his journey full because he was open to experience it ALL. He was a mystic individual.
My schedule hasn't allowed me the pleasure to read it the second time yet, but I am definitely looking forward to it. I'll probably want to read it a third time.
At one point, Kazantzakis is traveling with his friend Buddhaki to Mt. Athos to visit the many monasteries there and they come upon a Father Makarios. They muse on the ego, separation from God, etc., and when it is time to go, the good Father says, ["Good luck. God be with you." And a moment later, mockingly: "Regards to the world." "Regards to heaven," I retorted. "And tell God it's not our fault but his-because He made the world so beautiful."] (p 225)
On a trip to Jerusalem they meet a young man who ["...was passionately condemning the dishonesty and injustice of present-day economic and social life. The masses went hungry while the great and powerful piled up fortunes. Women sold themselves, priest did not believe, both heaven and the infernal pit were here on earth. The afterlife did not exist; here was where we had to find justice and happiness.... Cries rang out: "Yes, yes, you're right!" "Fire and axe!" Only one person attempted to object." ..."It was frightening. The purpose of trip was to worship the sweet, familiar face of God-so gentle, so tortured, so filled with hopes for life everlasting." ..."...we were carrying as a terrifying gift the seed of a new, dangerous, and as yet unformed cosmogony."] (p 245)
Later and on the road to the Dead Sea, "I had found it necessary to purge my bowels and expel the demons inside me-wolves, monkeys, women; minor virtues, minor joys, successes-so that I could remain simply an upright flame directed toward heaven. Now that I was a man, what was I doing but enacting what I had so ardently desired as a child in the courtyard of our family home! A person is only born once; I would never have another chance!" (p 252)
*Kazantzakis begins to summarize his spiritual journey with, "Our journey to the fatal intellectual Golgotha thus becomes more loaded with responsibility because now, looking at the Cretans, we know that if we fail to become human, the fault is ours, ours alone. For this lofty species-man-exists, he made his appearance on earth, and there is no longer any justification whatever for our deterioration and cowardice." (p 441)*
At the end is, "Just then-as fate was in a mood to play games-I made the acquaintance of an elderly mineworker named Alexis Zorba." (Zorba the Greek). This leads Kazantzakis to an introductory chapter on Zorba wherein he states, "My life's greatest benefactors have been journeys and dreams. Very few people, living or dead, have aided my struggle. If, however, I wished to designate which people left their traces imbedded most deeply in my soul, I would perhaps designate Homer, Buddha, Nietzsche, Bergson, and Zorba."
Kazantzakis was a prolific writer with incredible insight and wisdom and some of his best known works are: "The Last Temptation of Christ" and "Zorba the Greek". Start in on any book, though, and one will most likely feel compelled to read them all!
“Freedom was my first great desire. The second, which remains hidden within me to this day, tormenting me, was the desire for honorable sanctity. Hero together with “ethics”: such is mankind's supreme model.”
― Nikos Kazantzakis, Report to Greco.
And from an inscription on his tombstone. “I hope nothing. I fear nothing. I am free.”
― Nikos Kazantzakis
But these ideas are as strange as is the so called "American Democracy', which could not be farther from the true sense of Periclean Democracy.