Malkhaz Songulashvili – Ukraine in Europe – 5. In Search of Freedom

An Orthodox priest between police and protesters in Kiev

I was observing this milieu in amazement, thinking to myself that these people definitely deserve to be free and to live in the European environment.

What has been happening over the past three months or so in the capital city of Ukraine is a clear expression of the will of the freedom-loving Ukrainian people. The Ukrainian people wish to link their fate not only to the European Union and the West, but also to those values which Western civilization is built upon.

Every civilization has its positive and negative sides, and the West is no exception. The virtue of the West is that human beings and the universe they live in are considered the most important phenomena.

Western civilization is the most progressive of the existing civilizations. This is not surprising because it rests on the centuries-long experience of Western Europe in the domains of politics, economics, philosophy and religion. In terms of its spirituality, Christianity, Judaism and Islam all played a decisive role in the creation and formation of this civilization, as well as the various philosophical and scientific schools of thought that sprang up from these three monotheistic religions.

Such a legacy has turned the West into the most multicultural and economically revived society.

That is why numerous inhabitants of our planet strive towards life in the West: some go there to receive education or conduct scientific work, others in search of qualified medical assistance or even their fate.

Eastern European nations, especially the smaller nations, face two alternatives: either we give our countries the possibility of free economic and political development and create favorable conditions for that, or we lose the best of our sons through the brain drain.

The will of the Ukrainian people is to develop and build their society on European values, but this has not yet escaped the claws of Soviet legacy. It is regretful that this desire is opposed by a neighboring country that itself should be striving for integration with the Western world. This state (which in recent times is referred to in the same manner as Lord Voldemort in Harry Potter – “you know who”) is a rancorous and ambitious country that predominantly harms itself with its rancor and arrogance.

Author: DanutM

Anglican theologian. Former Director for Faith and Development Middle East and Eastern Europe Region of World Vision International

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