KIRILLOV’S MIRACLE.— In Dostoyevsky’s novel The Possessed, Kirillov isn’t entirely mistaken about the outcome of his suicide. When he kills himself, he will indeed kill God, as he believes. Suicide violates the most fundamental of Christian moral principles precisely because it permanently disrupts the very stability of identity God’s existence is supposed to guarantee. In killing himself, Kirillov does not kill God, he becomes God, that is, something that does not exist. Thinking is a war against death; reality is the battleground. The Divine was invented by the primitive imagination as a weapon against death, but when this fact is forgotten, the weapon is turned back against its inventor. When the Death of God is finally announced, those who have killed him do not realize that something will inevitably take His place. Nor do they suspect the obvious usurper: Nature: that which remains when the superfluous hypothesis disappears. Rather than vanishing along with God, the problem of suicide actually intensifies. It goes from being a mortal sin to an unnatural act. Thus, in order for Kirillov to be truly successful, he would have to perform a miracle: he would have to kill himself twice.
THE ART OF JUGGLING CORPSES.— Power concerns the organization, arrangement, and distribution of material objects in physical space. Whatever ideas and ideals are brought to bear on this process are necessarily corrupted and weighed down by their contact with decaying matter. Politics, in other words, is the art of juggling corpses and anyone whose highest value is power stinks of the grave.