Alexander Sekatskiy. Sacrifice and creativity. Vol. 1. No. 1. 2016

Publication Details

Sacrifice and creativity
Title in the language of publication: Жертва и созидание
Alexander Sekatskiy
PhD in Philosophy, Associate Professor of the Institute of Philosophy of the Saint Petersburg State University.
Address: 7/9 Universitetskaya emb., St. Petersburg 199034, Russia.
P. 22–39.
Language: Russian
Document type: Research Article


The article is devoted to the attempt to resolve one of the most important questions of metaphysics and, by the way, the existential paradox: how can sacrifice, being the pure idea of negativity, also be a condition sine qua non of all creativity, worthy of the name?

A brief anthropological investigation suggests that the first human sanctuary is the altar, with the sacred and sacrificial still dwelling in an indissoluble conjunction. The paper examines the relation of the sacrificial principle with the strength of social cohesion gained thereby and with the historical forms of religion and art; an attempt is also made to identify the sacrificial discourse in European metaphysics, where it is often deeply hidden or takes an odd shape. предпринимается попытка выделить жертвенный дискурс в европейской метафизике, где он зачастую глубоко скрыт или принимает причудливые формы.

From a metaphysical perspective the problem of sacrificial crisis is examined, with particular attention paid to sacrifice being accepted or unaccepted (rejected). It turns out that many of the events of history lend themselves to an interpretation in the logic of accepted, rejected or declined sacrifice, and although the results of such interpretations are speculative, they are not without philosophical interest and significance.

In the sacrificial context the rise of European art is also considered that occurred in the Renaissance, thus the ongoing artistic creation gets a new explanation.

In the human world, even in the modern era, there are sacrifice and self-sacrifice: it is owing to this fact that bonds of closeness and true friendship are established — however the right to reject the sacrifice without explanation remains the exclusive right of God and the essential attribute of divinity. Only love shows sometimes such contradictory depths, and therefore God is Love.


Sacrifice, self-sacrifice, ascesis, history, a historic event, rejection, art.


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© Alexander Sekatskiy, 2016

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