Page:The life of Tolstoy.djvu/155

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Another remarkable man who produced a great impression upon Tolstoy was also a self-taught sectarian—the peasant Timothy Bondaref. Deported to Siberia together with his peasant co-religionists, for spreading the teachings of the Sabbatarians, they settled near Minusinsk, the southern part of Central Siberia, where they formed a community. Bondaref's mind was especially occupied with the question of the causes of social inequality. His arguments were very original, and based on the Bible. The first commandment given by God to man, said he, was "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread"; to woman, "In sorrow thou shalt bring forth children." The majority of women up to to-day have obeyed the latter commandment—even the Empress "brings forth children in sorrow"—because one cannot buy a child: it would always be another's. But the men try by every means to avoid the commandment laid upon them; the educated classes do not earn their bread in the sweat of their face, but buy the bread of others. Hence the evil caused by the privileged classes: the sloth, luxury, and immorality on the one side, and poverty, ignorance, and wretchedness on the other. No preaching of love will remedy this evil. The commandment of love came later, and people are trying to