Sunday, December 24, 2023

Spiritual Quote of the Day (Fyodor Dostoevsky, on Children and ‘Christ's Christmas Tree’)

“'This is Christ's Christmas Tree,' they tell him. 'Christ always has a Christmas tree on this day, for the little children who have no tree of their own...' And he discovered that all these boys and girls had been children just like himself, but some of them had been frozen in the baskets in which they had been abandoned, on the staircases in front of the doors of Petersburg officials; others had been boarded out to Finnish women by the foundlings’ hospital, and been suffocated;… yet others had choked on the poisonous air in third-class railway carriages; but now they were all here, all of them like angels, all of them in Christ’s case, and he himself was one of them, holding out his hands to them and blessing them and their sinful mothers... And the mothers of these children were all standing there too, to one side, and weeping; each one knew her little boy or girl, and the children would fly up to them and kiss them, and dry their tears with their little hands, and beg them not to cry, because they were so happy here."—Russian novelist and short-story writer Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1880), “The Heavenly Christmas Tree,” originally published in 1876, republished in A Bad Business: Essential Stories, translated by Nicolas Pasternak Slater and Maya Slater (2021)

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