Confession

by Leo Tolstoy

Summary

In this short book, the newly-converted Tolstoy shares some of the struggles he faced during a mid-life crisis of faith. He begins by reflecting upon how neither philosophy nor religion seemed to answer any of life’s great questions. As he explains, the author only overcomes his doubts after observing and immersing himself in the faith of ordinary people performing everyday tasks. The Christian life lived out, more than anything else, revealed the truths of God to him. Tolstoy’s personal account not only provides insight into the mind of one of the world’s greatest novelists, but it also serves to shed light on the human experience of doubt, despair, and faith. Tolstoy’s Confession can be read especially well alongside his novella of similar themes, The Death of Ivan Ilyich.

Kathleen O’Bannon
CCEL Staff
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About Leo Tolstoy

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Picture of Leo Tolstoy
  Born: 1828
Died: 1910
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