Page:The life of Tolstoy.djvu/139

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lation into rich and poor, idle and working, and reached the conclusion that only a radical change in the whole social order could abolish the dreadful, bitter, and savage poverty created by the opulent and idle life of the privileged classes.

Tolstoy considered money one of the principal evils of the existing social order, as money is, so to say, concentrated compulsion, easily transferred to another. Our false social order is upheld by false science with its complicated theories justifying existing evil.

"What then must we do?" Tolstoy asked again, laying bare all the sores of the existing order by a subtle and merciless analysis. The answer he gave is the same as that given by John the Baptist to his contemporaries: repent, be re-born, give to the poor, not a farthing or a shilling from your thousands and millions, but share with the poor their hard, working lives. Accordingly, Tolstoy began to reform his own life; he renounced everything superfluous—wine, tobacco, meat, etc.—and endeavoured to spend his time in productive work for the general welfare. He divided his days into four parts, and gave the first part to intellectual work, the second to hard physical labour, the third to crafts and light manual labour, and the fourth to intercourse with people. He tried