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Philosophical Thought

The Reasons of Ineffectiveness of modern Concepts of religious Tolerance

Zhukova Evgeniia Mikhaylovna

Postgraduate student, the department of State-Confessional Relations, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration

119571, Russia, g. Moscow, ul. Vernadskogo, 82, of. 6 korpus

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Abstract: The article examines a number of characteristic features of modern concepts of religious tolerance and its "expanded" version tolerance in general. These concepts now have a noticeable impact on socio-political life. Despite its spread, the concepts of tolerance and the concepts of multiculturalism and pluralism that grew out of them proved unable to solve the serious problems facing the modern international community. The subject of this study is the characteristic features of the concepts of (religious) tolerance. The purpose of the study is to analyze the specifics of the origin of ideas of (religious) tolerance in the works of European thinkers of the XVIIXVIII centuries and to identify a number of features of the corresponding modern socio-political concepts due to this specificity. The article uses: an integrated approach that contributes to the comprehensive disclosure of the problem posed; a causal method that allows us to trace the connection between the features of ideas of (religious) tolerance in the past and certain aspects of relevant modern concepts; methods of generalization and classification. The novelty of the study lies in the fact that one of the goals of religious tolerance in the past has been revealed to level the influence of Christianity (Catholicism) on society. An attempt is made to answer the question of the reasons for the ineffectiveness of the concepts of tolerance, appealing to the historical origins of the underlying ideas, as well as to the modern period of global changes and geopolitical transformations, including the current military-political situation in Ukraine. The results of the study can be used both in the theoretical, purely scientific aspect (religious studies, philosophy, political science), and in practical in the strategic planning of the internal political course of Russia. The result of the study is the establishment of a number of reasons for those trends that are inherent both in the process of theoretical development of these concepts and in the practice of their application. The conclusion is that religious tolerance cannot be the foundation for solving interfaith and state-confessional issues in the world.


tolerance, religious tolerance, multiculturalism, pluralism, religious pluralism, the Age of Enlightenment, globalization, atomized society, liberalism, conflicts

This article is automatically translated. You can find original text of the article here.

The events of the last decades in the world have made many people think about the prospects of promoting the concepts of tolerance, strictly following them in the conditions of extremely complex global processes. The unstable political and economic situation in a number of countries, local armed conflicts, as well as full-scale wars have led to the fact that migrant flows have flooded into prosperous states. The negative reaction of the Western world was not long in coming. From the lips of public and political figures, criticism of the authorities that allowed an uncontrolled increase in the number of migrants began to sound more and more often. Discussions about whose culture is more "backward" or even "barbaric" and thereby threatens liberal freedoms, hinders modernization, hinders the promotion of democratic principles, etc. have become commonplace. In the Western media, voices began to be heard more and more in favor of the fact that there was actually no tolerance in Europe, and modern circumstances only revealed this. Others explain the crisis by the fact that tolerance is losing its position [24; 60; 62; 65, p. 853-854]. R. Weisberg, whose sphere of interests is the Western educational sphere, is confident that tolerance in the form in which it is preached today can lead to civil war [64]. Similar thoughts are expressed by V. Brown, who defines tolerance as an instrument of violence [55].

The question of why these concepts have not become the basis for solving the problems facing modern society is not so simple and requires in-depth analysis. In our opinion, the identification of the features of the idea of tolerance in its origins can partly shed light on this problem. In this article we will turn to the Enlightenment era, its "harbingers" and key figures. Taken together, the views of these philosophers will give us an idea of the "breeding ground" in which the ideas discussed were born. In addition, it will be shown what cultural and political consequences in the XX early XXI centuries led to the initial attitudes of its founders.

First of all, we note that the topic of tolerance (religious tolerance) is discussed very widely and actively. It has been studied and/or continues to be studied by such domestic researchers as D. V. Alekseev, who considers tolerance as a socially destructive phenomenon; I. G. Artsybashev, who pays attention to the value content of religious tolerance; A. E. Zimbuli and V. A. Lectorsky, who distinguish certain types of tolerance; R. R. Valitova, who defines tolerance as a moral virtue of the individual; M. P. Mchedlov, dealing with the problem of defining the boundaries of tolerance; I. V. Ponkin, revealing tolerance as a manifestation of an understated socio-psychological sensitivity of the individual, etc. The topic of tolerance (religious tolerance) is included in the sphere of scientific interests of many foreign researchers, among them V. Brown, who studies tolerance as a means of management, the ability to dominate and justify political aggression; J. Brown. Horton, K. Niederman and M. Walzer, who study the social function of tolerance; U. Kimlika, who traces the links between tolerance and the liberal system, tolerance and multiculturalism; P. King, who perceives tolerance as a tool for restraining emotional reactions, etc.

In the works of various authors, many definitions of tolerance are proposed, its social, political and cultural roles are considered, its psychological function is revealed, its axiological/ontological essence is revealed, etc. At the same time, researchers have a wide range of assessments of the concept of tolerance: some consider it in a positive way as a "cure" for social "ailments", others see it almost exclusively as a destructive phenomenon.

Without limiting ourselves to any one definition of the concept of tolerance and, moreover, without pursuing the task of its exhaustive description, we will focus on several characteristic provisions that are traditionally the "core" of all possible modern variations of the concept of tolerance. Moreover, the focus of our attention will be the connection between the primary attitudes of the authors of the ideas of (religious) tolerance and the features of the corresponding modern concepts.

Modern concepts of tolerance (in relation to representatives of various religions, nationalities, etc.) appeared as a development of ideas of religious tolerance. The founders of the latter were J. Milton (1608-1674) and J. Locke (1632-1704). Being Protestants and waging an irreconcilable struggle against Catholicism, they at the same time advocated religious freedom. However, this freedom was understood by them in a very unusual way: they recognized the right to exist for all religions except Catholicism (J. Milton, J. Locke), paganism (J. Milton), Islam (J. Locke) and atheism (J. Locke) [29, pp. 81-83; 30, p. 38]. The paradox of the situation was that at the time of these thinkers, Protestants, Catholics and those who professed paganism lived mainly on the territory of Europe [30, p. 37]. Thus, on the one hand, J. Milton and J. Locke declared their commitment to religious freedom, and on the other hand, expressed thoughts that contradicted this idea. Yu. F. Samarin also noted that a tragedy had occurred in European countries: Protestantism appeared due to the abuses of Catholicism, but not as an independent religion, but as a denial of Catholicism. According to the philosopher, the tragedy of the situation is not in the actual appearance of another religious trend, but in the fact that its driving force was opposition to another trend, which cannot but lead to trouble [42, pp. 453-457].

The thinkers who welcomed the ideas of religious tolerance include P. Bayle (1647-1706), F. Voltaire (1694-1778) and J. D'Alembert (1717-1783). All of them are representatives of skepticism, although P. Bayle was no stranger to atheism [20, p. 67]. Adjacent to this circle are Sh . Montesquieu (1689-1755) and J. J. Rousseau (1712-1778), who created their own deistic reality, which they opposed both the traditional religious picture of the world and atheism. Finally, we should mention D. Diderot (1713-1784) and P.A. Holbach (1723-1789), who were impressed by atheism, who went further than Protestants, who fought mainly against Catholicism, and opposed the very idea of the existence of God.

Let's take a closer look at the ideological attitudes of J. Locke, F. Voltaire, P. Bayle, D. Diderot, J. J. Rousseau and S. Montesquieu, dealing directly with the topic of this work.

To begin with, let's turn to the idea of J. Locke says that the functions of the state are clearly limited by the so-called Social Contract [28, pp. 317-319]. In his opinion, state systems "were created only to protect some people from deception and violence of others in this world" [39, p. 66], they ensure civil peace and protect human property. Fundamental in his thoughts were ideas about freedom and rights, about property [47]. Accordingly, religious tolerance (as well as tolerance in general), according to J. Locke, was to be determined by a Social contract and create the necessary conditions to ensure the right to freedom and the right to property. Note that Locke's idea of tolerance, according to the observation of many researchers, led to a pragmatic and even indifferent attitude towards religion [14, p. 379; 27, p. 48-49; 30, p. 37; 39, p. 66-67; 53, p. 41].

Unlike J. Locke, another supporter of the idea of religious tolerance F. Voltaire was not indifferent to religion and its institutions. Even in his youth, he was an active participant in the "Temple" society, where it was considered fashionable to mock the church. All the subsequent years of his life, he did not take faith or the church seriously; his "cynical and ironic mind" [11, p. 201] could not perceive the religious sphere differently. When Voltaire was offered (and more than once) to take communion, he invariably refused because he allegedly coughs up blood and fears that it may mix with the blood of Jesus Christ, as well as because of alleged near-death fatigue. It is noteworthy that on the church building in his estate there was an inscription "To God VOLTAIRE", in which the second word was written in large letters. For F. Voltaire's Christianity is the most absurd, bloodthirsty religion, woven from terrible superstitions. For example, he considered the descriptions of the life path of Jesus Christ and various Old Testament prophets, stories from the history of the Jewish people, etc. to be absurd [7, p. 33, 107, 127, 152, 217; 11, pp. 199-201; 13, pp. 107-108]. Such criticism, interspersed with irony and ridicule in the philosopher, ultimately contributed to the de-Christianization of society [25, p. 167], but by no means to the settlement of intra-confessional conflicts and certainly not to reduce the degree of confrontation between society and the Catholic Church. Meanwhile, in the era of F. Voltaire already had a lot of problems in the religious sphere. What the Inquisition alone is worth, which existed in Europe right up to the beginning of the XX century. [46, p. 161-170] Some authors believed that it was religious intolerance that led to the fact that Europe eventually turned into a "patchwork quilt" of individual countries [19, p. 23].

To top it all off, it is worth paying attention to individual statements and actions of F. Voltaire, testifying to his deep personal rejection of the gospel covenants of love, equality and brotherhood. Thus, advocating for education (it was impossible to expect anything else from an outstanding educator), he at the same time believed that not all people should be educated or at least be literate. On the one hand, F. Voltaire opened a school for peasants, on the other hand, admitted that he was afraid of such schools; in his opinion, the development of peasant children should be focused on physical labor. Contrasting himself with the less educated and well-off segments of the population, he wrote: "I cultivate my garden, but it is impossible to do without toads in it, although they do not interfere with listening to the nightingale's singing. The stupidest earth and the stupidest sky are quite enough for the rabble" (cit. according to: [13, p. 34]). In such maxims, the motive of exclusivity can be traced, which runs counter not only to purely Christian humanistic maxims, but even to the attitudes of secular ethics. However, this is not surprising: Voltaire's attitude to man proceeded from the thesis that the defining world order is the feeling of love for oneself; otherwise, that is, if God had arranged creatures to take care of the welfare of others, then life on Earth would be completely different than it is [8, p. 199].

It should be noted here that J. Locke and F. Voltaire had a significant influence on the formation of the ideology of liberalism (from Latin. liberalis free), an indispensable component of which is the formulated concept of religious tolerance in one form or another [13, p. 36]. Both thinkers put the individual and his personal freedom in the foreground. The atomization process was important for F. Voltaire and at a higher level: for example, he considered it necessary to manifest the diversity of religious beliefs (pluralism) and, as a consequence, the simultaneous existence of many sects within the same denomination [13, p. 45, 190; 30, p. 39; 36, p. 204]. With the help of the ideas of plurality (fragmentation), religious tolerance actually began to be used as a tool with which the importance of Catholic ethics was leveled.

P. Beil has ideas of religious tolerance, as well as F. Voltaire, were intertwined with religious skepticism. He doubted the possibility of rational justification of the dogmas of faith and proclaimed the independence of morality from religion, emphasizing that atheists can be no less moral than believers [3, pp. 144-145; 20, pp. 68; 30, p. 39]. D. Diderot, who believed that "pure atheism excludes any religion" [10, p. 70], expressed solidarity with P. Beil's position on the separation of religion and morality and also advocated freedom of thought and religious pluralism [20, p. 68]. It is worth noting that the desire to differentiate the once unified whole with further opposition of its parts (religion vs morality, reason vs faith) is characteristic of the New European philosophy. These tendencies have their roots in medieval scholasticism, from which the idea of the primacy of reason over faith gradually grew. This idea is considered by some authors to be a sign of rationalistic limitation, personal fragmentation [9, p. 19; 44, p. 59-60; 45, p. 125]. Presumably, this stage of rationalization and a kind of intellectual "fragmentation" was historically inevitable, but today, in the era of globalization, synergetics and the search for the synthesis of thinking, these ideas have outlived themselves, since their negative side is the tendency to fragmentation and denial.

Unlike F. Voltaire, J. J. Rousseau did not limit his reasoning to the idea of a plurality of sects. His idea was to "build" a so-called civil religion, whose supporters would resolve any religious issues based on this religion, Social Contract and laws. The provisions of the beliefs welcomed by the state should not contradict civil laws, otherwise the relevant denomination is outlawed and subject to expulsion. Moreover, in the views of J. J. Rousseau, civil religion was ultimately to displace Christianity, which, in his opinion, was absolutely divorced from earthly realities, in other words, the philosopher insisted on the impossibility of applying its postulates in everyday everyday life [6, pp. 100-104; 12; 13, p. 199; 30, p. 40; 39, p. 315-320].

The minds of Enlightenment thinkers were occupied by a kind of cult of regulating the life of citizens ("the spirit of laws"). This trend was vividly expressed in the works of Montesquieu. Speaking from the standpoint of deism, Montesquieu insisted that a person is responsible for his own life and should prefer an earthly existence to a hypothetical posthumous one; at the same time, the thinker rejected the idea of the immortality of the soul, spoke about the absurdity of the provisions of the Christian doctrine [13, p. 119; 23; 32, p. 16].

This "craving for the mundane" found its embodiment in Montesquieu's arguments about trade. It is she and not literature, art, science or technology that is the measure of the level of development of society. Trade, Montesquieu believed, directs people to peace (by no means individuals, namely the masses). Where trade "reigns", justice, virtues, and the desire to sacrifice one's own benefit arise [13, p. 155; 31, p. 405-409]. Only in a world where trade plays the role of the connecting principle of everything, and religious tolerance can manifest itself. However, it seemed to Montesquieu that the intolerance of Christians was gradually receding into the past; and this despite the persecution (burning, charioteering) of Calvinists in France, in the homeland of Montesquieu, which were practiced even during the philosopher's lifetime until the 1760s [13, p. 129; 33, p. 125].

What do we see? Although the origins of modern concepts of religious tolerance were thinkers who adhered to different views representatives of theism (Protestants, deists), atheists or simply skeptics, they all somehow developed their ideas around the concepts of freedom, individualism and pluralism. The latter became a favorable environment for all kinds of schisms and currents within one denomination (in this case, Catholicism), which inevitably led to the loss of the positions of the original creed (Catholic Church), weakening its influence on the masses and, most importantly, did not fundamentally solve the problem of intraconfessional confrontation between different currents, but, on the contrary, only exacerbated it.

At the same time, the systemforming principle for these thinkers was a formal rule - a legal norm. In their works, law and legality actually become the only measure of permissibility and inadmissibility. On the one hand, one can speak (albeit with a stretch) about a certain progressiveness of such an approach in the conditions of Europe of the XVIIXVIII centuries, when an appeal to ethics was unproductive in resolving conflicts that arose on religious grounds. On the other hand, relying solely on the law, without addressing a person (raising the level of his education, morality and general culture) does little in the long term and certainly will not allow to cope with the problem of hostility between representatives of different faiths in the conditions of the XXI century.

As noted above, it is from religious tolerance that the concepts of tolerance in general have now been born and developed. They have become widespread, first of all, in Western European countries and the United States, which (itself) are perceived as an outpost of this ideology. An important event in this area was the appearance of the "Declaration of Principles of Tolerance", adopted by resolution 5.61 of the UNESCO General Conference of 16.11.1995. This document contains the following definition of tolerance "... respect, acceptance and correct understanding of the rich diversity of cultures of our world, our forms of self-expression and ways of expressing human individuality. It is promoted by knowledge, openness, communication and freedom of thought, conscience and beliefs. Tolerance is freedom in diversity. This is not only a moral duty, but also a political and legal need. Tolerance is a virtue that makes peace possible and contributes to the replacement of the culture of war with a culture of peace" (see: Declaration of Principles of Tolerance. Access mode: https://www.un.org/ru/documents/decl_conv/declarations/toleranc.shtml ).

There is a continuity of the "Declaration ..." from the principles proclaimed in the Enlightenment era [1, p. 53; 35, p. 92]: an appeal to the individual and various ways of his self-expression; the assertion of pluralism, freedom, diversity; the assertion of a culture of peace, not a culture of war (without any disclosure of these very vague terms). The text does not talk about ethics (tolerance seems to replace ethics), nor about moral principles, nor about unity, nor about cooperation, nor about humanism. The authors of the document focus on European values, which are often referred to today as "universal" and are the basis of various international documents [1, pp. 50, 53]. The results of the statistical analysis of the vocabulary of "Declaration ..." are indicative: if the words with the same root as "law", "law" and "norm" occur 24 times, with the same root as "politics" and "economy" 9 times, with the same root as "individuality" and "freedom" 7 times, then the words, the same root with the word "morality" are found only 2 times, and the words with the same root with "ethics", "morality", "help", "cooperation", "mercy", "love" are completely absent. It should be noted that there are other definitions of tolerance, but they do not contradict the key provisions of the declaration under discussion, which has been serving as a guideline for relevant socio-political and legislative initiatives for several decades.

The point of view of D. V. Alekseev, who believes that tolerance has organically developed precisely in the Western culture of industrial-market civilization, seems justified. The researcher is convinced that tolerance is a conjunctural ideological technology aimed at organizing a conflictfree "liberal omnivorous" co-existence of cultural contexts of a very dubious nature by centrifugal mixing of the varieties of being. In his opinion, tolerance (and with it pluralism) creates a certain appearance of stability and well-being, limited by a transnational-corporated economy and culture [1, p. 50, 60; 35, p. 92].

The "conflict-free" and "omnivorous" noted by D. V. Alekseev, when applied to the ideological and political struggle, can sometimes (and probably in its extreme form should) degenerate into unscrupulousness and conformism of the lowest quality. In this sense, the figure of S. M. de Talleyrand-Perigord (1754-1838) is noteworthy, who, although he did not stand at the origins of the idea of tolerance, nevertheless embodied its principles in his activity, and became, as it were, the personification of all the negative aspects of this concept. Initially, he was a Roman Catholic bishop, then left the church and advocated revolution, later retired from revolutionary activities and served as Minister of Foreign Affairs under three different regimes in France. He served Napoleon I Bonaparte, but it is believed that he became distant and betrayed the latter. To promote the restoration of the monarchy in France, he arrived in Vienna and became a minister of King Louis XVIII. Speaking of S. M. Talleyrand, usually the sum of qualities is distinguished skepticism, cynicism, opportunism, hedonism, agnosticism, cunning, ambition, dexterity, unscrupulousness, intrigue, hypocrisy. Later his name became a household name. He is credited with saying: "To betray in time means to anticipate" [25, p. 167]. The diplomat separated politics from morality, and language was perceived by him as a means of manipulation. It is no coincidence that the nickname "father of lies" was attached to him [22, pp. 88-89; 25; 48; 51, pp. 179-182; 54, p. 67].

The current socio-political situation in the world can be characterized as catastrophic, and D. V. Alekseev considers the role of the ideology of tolerance in these processes destructive. It (together with pluralism) manifests itself in all spheres of human life, forming a self-enclosed individual consciousness, "scattered", "fragmented" mentality and the nature of society's existence through formal recognition of otherness and the realization of surrogate peacefulness in society [1, p. 60, 69; 26, p. 25; 61, p. 50-76.].

M. P. Mchedlov notes that because of tolerance, the world as a whole is fragmented. Any holistic ideas that allow us to define objective criteria for understanding what is a common good, a common interest, a common goal and a common destiny, for which differences can be overcome, are replaced by relativized ideas about boundless diversity, and often existing separately from ethics and outside of any connection with ethics. These ideas, growing out of the significance and self-sufficiency ("self-worth") of differences, transform the cultural paradigm, the priorities of society and the course of the state [2; 24; 49, pp. 277-278].

Tolerance is often interpreted as the right to be different (meaning the difference in social norms of behavior between different subcultures, majority and minority, "one's own" and "someone else's", etc.) [24, p. 142]. However, in fact, we sometimes have a paradoxical situation, contrary to the basic democratic principles, when the minority sets the rules for the majority [40, p. 68]. For example, the struggle of representatives of the LGBT community for their rights has led to discrimination against heterosexuals and discrediting traditional family values, so it is very logical to assume that attempts to introduce tolerance to homosexual relationships (sexual life, official marriages, adoption of children) into society will inevitably lead to an increase in the number of carriers of these values, reduce fertility and life expectancy [1, pp. 68-69; 56].

Speaking about the concepts of tolerance, one more phenomenon cannot be ignored. In the late XX and early XXI centuries, multiculturalism entered the life of a considerable number of countries, representing a logical continuation of the ideas of tolerance (including religious) and pluralism. Like tolerance, it is closely related to liberalism [49, p. 279; 57, p. 168, 171; 58], and, according to some researchers, it is an offshoot of the latter [21, p. 413-428]. The course of multiculturalism was officially taken in a number of Western (primarily European) states in 1971-1975, and later their number began to grow. Thus, an attempt was made to absolutize tolerance [1, p. 107].

A number of authors see a complementary connection between multiculturalism and the market economy. So S. A. Stroev notes: "Multiculturalism, the ideology of tolerance and political correctness ... are a means of destroying and atomizing society and destroying moral values that do not fit into the format of the market and consumer society. They are financed and implemented by the capitalocratic oligarchy in order to consolidate its power over the atomized society" (cit. according to: [1, p. 47]).

As you know, the task of a market economy is the profitability of production, sale of goods and services, as well as profit-making by market participants. Sometimes in these conditions, "a living person with his happiness and grief ... is displaced from the center of the circle of interests and two abstractions have taken his place: profit and business" [17, p. 131]. For this system, a person is only a source of profit: he is regarded as a consumer, regardless of his religious beliefs, origin, culture, etc. In addition to the process of this "depersonalization", state borders lose their significance: the main "players" of the world process are transnational corporations that destroy or "swallow" local economies and unique economic experience [1, pp. 61-63; 18, p. 9]. As N. N. Zarubina writes, the global economy, formed as a different reality and encompassed the whole world with its influence, "as a whole, was subordinated not to the solution of universal problems, not to the humane goals of improving the lives of all peoples without exception, but to the idea of maximizing the profits of a limited number of global actors. The instrument of this maximization is both the unwinding of senseless consumption in developed countries and the shameless robbery of poor and unprotected countries of the "world periphery"" [15].

The non-viability of multiculturalism is also pointed out by many participants in socio-political discussions. So, T. Sarrazin spoke very sharply about this in his 2010 book "Germany: Selfdestruction" [43]. D. A. Rogozin in 2011 expressed his position on this issue, noting that tolerance and multiculturalism "in European execution" do not contribute to the integration and assimilation of foreigners, but segregation - forced separation people are divided into racial, religious and other groups in everyday life, which will inevitably lead to an "explosion" of the Western world from within [38]. The failure of the multiculturalism policy has been repeatedly stated by A. Merkel [5, pp. 129-130; 52, p. 140]. Similar statements were made by the leaders of other European countries. The beginning of the 2020s was marked by almost continuous conflicts on religious and racial-national grounds in Western countries. In the USA, they manifested themselves in the confrontation of "whites" and "blacks"; France, Germany and other EU countries faced the problem of migrants, which led to conflicts of varying severity between Christians and Muslims (see: "Europe itself ignited this fire." European politician about relations with Russia, the conflict in Ukraine and NATO in the Black Sea. Interview with T. Mariani (12/14/2021) // Lenta.ru . Access mode: https://lenta.ru/articles/2021/12/14/mariani /). If the internal situation in Western countries has changed dramatically in recent decades, then foreign policy has been and has remained fairly stable for many centuries.

A. A. Zinoviev, describing the aspirations of these countries, which are already closer to modernity, to impose democracy (understood by them as the only acceptable one) on other peoples and states, including Russia, insisted that the true goals of this policy are not bringing good, but subjugation and destruction [16]. These thoughts echo the statements of W. Eco, who believed that in an outwardly decent desire to come to other peoples and "instruct" them in what is "good" and what is "bad", lies the justification of colonialism [48, p. 7]. One of the intellectual results of this expansionist policy was the partial reception of the ideas of tolerance and multiculturalism by representatives of the Russian establishment and academic circles.

Today, events are developing so rapidly that we are witnessing tectonic shifts in almost all spheres politics, geopolitics, economics, social and cultural fields. Much of what previously seemed stable and durable is collapsing or being radically transformed. Agreements are leveled, hostility comes to the place of international cooperation, which develops into concrete aggressive actions. Dramatic events around Ukraine are unfolding before our eyes, requiring Russia to take quick and decisive action. Russian Russian culture, which has now led to a large-scale confrontation between two once friendly republics of the single Soviet space, is an effective tool for solving political and economic problems by the "collective West" (led by the United States), one of the ways to counteract the Russian world with the resulting prohibitions of the Russian language and culture and, ultimately, the leveling of influence. Russia's view of the world [4, p. 43]. It would seem that in such a situation, the idea of tolerance should have come in handy, but the thing is that its real functionality and the scope of the final application lie in a different plane. And this is now becoming more and more obvious.

Summing up what has been said, we can conclude that the concepts of religious tolerance (and, accordingly, tolerance in general) originated and formed as a systemic opposition to the Catholic world order, as an instrument of fragmentation of this religion. Among the founders of this idea we see representatives of various, sometimes diametrically opposed worldviews. Moreover, in their worldview there are either obvious signs of intolerance, or a rather skeptical attitude towards religion, or complete indifference to religious doctrines. Tolerance is based on multiplicity, diversity and freedom (bordering on permissiveness [63]), on individualism and various ways of its manifestation. The latter may differ from generally accepted ethical norms, but deviation from legal norms is unacceptable. The law is put at the forefront and plays the role of a litmus test, demonstrating "what is possible" and "what is not." In this sense, it seems unacceptable to identify the concepts of religious tolerance (with its value-ethical dominant) and religious tolerance.

The idea of tolerance, which has taken root in various spheres of society over the past few decades, has become a kind of breeding ground for multiculturalism, which has not only integrated well into the Western liberal-capitalist system, but also occupied an important place in its ideological tools. Together with them, he created the illusion of social stability and harmony in the world, although in reality he became a factor in the further atomization of society, a "time bomb" and led to numerous social miasmas and armed clashes.

Finally, it is important to note that today tolerance positions itself not just as an abstract theoretical model, but as a universal practice, an integral component of the global world. Timely understanding of this important aspect will probably save Russia from a number of mistakes in the process of difficult choice of the vector of sustainable development. Moreover, it has accumulated its own centuries-old experience of building a multi-confessional and multinational state.


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The subject of the study in the article is not explicitly formulated by the author, but in general it can be defined as the evolution of the Western concept of tolerance. The methodology of the study is not completely clear. First of all, it has not been formulated what should be considered tolerance, what is the understanding of this term and what is its conceptual content today in the world (well, or mainly Western, since the article in fact refers specifically to Western interpretations of this concept) socio-political thought. In the middle of the article, however, there is a definition of this term taken from a UNESCO document, but it can hardly be assumed that it is exhaustive and absolute for the entire Western society. Unfortunately, the article does not pay attention at all to the questions of how the average Western man in the street understands this term, what place tolerance occupies in his value system, to what extent the declarative level of tolerance cultivated in Western society corresponds to its real level, determined on the basis of empirical data (for example, materials from sociological surveys). In fact, in this article we are dealing with a bare abstraction called "tolerance", and therefore the search for its origins in the philosophy of the Enlightenment is inconclusive. It is not clear what the meaning of these searches is, what they give to science and society. It seems that a much more fruitful way would be to trace the formation of this concept already in the twentieth century, in order to demonstrate the process of its consolidation as an ideological doctrine of the Western world. Why did this happen, how did it become possible? Unfortunately, the author does not raise these questions in the article and does not answer them. The relevance of the topic is quite high and, perhaps, its justification in the article could be significantly strengthened by references to current political events against the background of the military special operation of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation in Ukraine and the subsequent sanctions against Russia, which affected many ordinary people, athletes, cultural figures, scientists, students, etc. the question of how the principles of tolerance are combined with pressure on Russians, that is, with discrimination based on nationality and language. But this aspect is not touched upon in the article. Scientific novelty has to be characterized as low. No scientific problem has been explicitly formulated. In general terms, there is talk about the existing criticism of the concept of tolerance and the author himself, as can be understood, considers this concept harmful. But this point of view lacks depth of study and persuasiveness, as well as reliance on some specific empirical material. In fact, the author simply discusses speculative constructions, without even trying to compare them with the real processes taking place in society. The style of the article meets the requirements for scientific articles. The structure doesn't seem optimal. As already mentioned, at least some formulation of what tolerance is (and this is the cornerstone term for this article) appears somewhere in the middle of the article, although it would be logical to discuss this issue at the beginning. The bibliography is extensive, consists of 56 items, although it is framed with some violation of editorial requirements. So, in addition to scientific literature, which should only be reflected in the list, there are various kinds of materials that should be referenced in the text. For example, the "Declaration of Principles of Tolerance" or an interview with T. Mariani. At the same time, it is noteworthy that there is no literature in foreign languages, in particular, in English, although, of course, the topic of tolerance in the West is very in demand. Consequently, the bibliography does not fully reflect the historiography of the issues raised in the article, which is a serious drawback. There is practically no appeal to opponents, which may be a consequence of insufficient familiarity with foreign literature. Conclusions: this article in its current form is not of interest to the readership and is not an independent scientific study.

Second Peer Review

Peer reviewers' evaluations remain confidential and are not disclosed to the public. Only external reviews, authorized for publication by the article's author(s), are made public. Typically, these final reviews are conducted after the manuscript's revision. Adhering to our double-blind review policy, the reviewer's identity is kept confidential.
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The reviewed article is devoted to an urgent topic, and its relevance can be traced both at the theoretical level (the very concept of tolerance and its relationship with similar concepts remains insufficiently defined) and at the level of modern ideology and politics, which, it seems, does not even need explanation. A significant place in the presented material is given to the history of the concept, the prerequisites for its origin and evolution, which turns out to be important for demonstrating its significance in the life of modern society. The article as a whole makes a very favorable impression, the author has worked through a large amount of literature, formulated his own attitude to the problems of the functioning of the concept of tolerance in the modern world, presented the most important results of his research in a clear form accessible to a wide range of readers. The research is based on the premise that all forms of tolerance promoted in the modern world arise from religious tolerance, and the author justifies in sufficient detail the legitimacy of accepting this premise. At the same time, a number of points need additional elaboration or clarification. The title of the article is tedious, it does not indicate with a proper degree of certainty the problem field, in fact, any content that somehow intersects with the concept of tolerance can be "summed up" under this name. It is necessary to remove or change the nature of the "literature review" presented in the article, it is very formal, a simple enumeration of modern authors dealing with this topic does not give anything to understand the problem. The presented classification of "historical forms" of tolerance is also objectionable, primarily because it does not meet the well-known criteria of formal logical analysis: neither the unity of the classification criterion is respected, nor the requirement that the members of the division should exclude each other, etc. For example, why can't a "skeptic" or a "deist" be a "Protestant"? In short, the author should think about whether such a classification is necessary at all, or significantly modify it. The most important objection, apparently, is that in the main, historical part of the article, the reader sees something similar to the approach in the presentation of historical and cultural material, which was given the playful name "philosophical zoo": here in this cage Bacon, he said so-and-so, and here in this Descartes, etc. Actually, it does not make sense to simply list all the thinkers of the past, we should try to identify some kind of "single plot" of that story, which could be defined as the history of understanding the phenomenon of tolerance in European (and maybe not only European) culture. If we evaluate the presented text from the point of view of "formal" criteria (stylistics, absence of typos and punctuation errors, etc.), then we can say that it is written quite "cleanly", however, I would like to recommend the author to think about how individual authors should be represented, in this regard, some fragments are not free from flaws ("the anti-globalist politician S. A. Stroev notes...", "as the philosopher N. N. Zarubina writes ....", "the philosopher A. A. Zinoviev, describing...", etc.). It seems that, in general, the article has good publication prospects, it has independent content indicating that that the author has done a lot of work. However, before publication in a scientific journal, it is necessary to take into account at least the most important of the comments made. I recommend sending the article for revision.

Third Peer Review

Peer reviewers' evaluations remain confidential and are not disclosed to the public. Only external reviews, authorized for publication by the article's author(s), are made public. Typically, these final reviews are conducted after the manuscript's revision. Adhering to our double-blind review policy, the reviewer's identity is kept confidential.
The list of publisher reviewers can be found here.

The relevance of the work is due to the need for a philosophical understanding of modern concepts of religious tolerance from the point of view of intellectual trends of postmodernism. The research method is metaanalysis as an integration, generalization and philosophical understanding of the causes of inefficiency of modern concepts of religious tolerance. The scientific novelty of the study, according to the author's plan, which, in my opinion, is not fully realized in the work, consists in substantiating the fact that the concepts of religious tolerance originated and were formed on the basis of Western liberal cultural values, socio-economic needs and interests of European countries, turned out to be unviable in the modern world. The article consists of an introduction, the main part, a conclusion and a list of references, including 64 sources, 11 of them in English. In the introduction, the author rightly draws attention to the fact that in European countries, where migrants from different regions of the world have been actively staying in recent decades, tension is increasing and conflict risks are developing. The current situation, as the author notes, generates criticism of the concepts of tolerance both in the Western media and in scientific publications of European scientists.In the main part of the work, the author raises and examines the question of the reasons why the existing concepts of tolerance did not allow in practice to prevent and resolve the growing contradictions. It is rightly noted that there is no unambiguous understanding of the terms tolerance and religious tolerance in both domestic and foreign scientific discourse. There are a great many, and often contradictory, interpretations of these concepts. In this regard, the author turns to the primary sources, to the works of the Enlightenment era, which became the "harbingers" of the creation of concepts of tolerance and finds paradoxical positions. For example, it is indicated that J. Milton (1608-1674) and J. Locke (1632-1704), being Protestants, waged an irreconcilable struggle against Catholicism. And at the same time they advocated religious freedom: "However, this freedom was understood by them in a very unusual way: they recognized the right to exist for all religions except Catholicism (J. Milton, J. Locke), paganism (J. Milton), Islam (J. Locke) and atheism (J. Locke) J. Milton (1608-1674) and J. Locke (1632-1704)". Based on the results of the analysis of the principles formed in the age of Enlightenment, the author reasonably argues that they formed the basis for the understanding of tolerance presented in the "Declaration of Principles of Tolerance" adopted by resolution 5.61 of the UNESCO General Conference of 11/16/1995. We are talking about the following principles: addressing the individual and the various ways of his self-expression; affirming pluralism, freedom, diversity; affirming a culture of peace, not a culture of war. The author illustrates his position, including through the results of a statistical analysis of the vocabulary of the Declaration. In the course of further analysis, the author of the article associates himself with Russian scientists who are critical of modern concepts of tolerance and practices of its implementation in socio-political life. In particular, the paper presents the position of D. V. Alekseev, "who believes that tolerance has organically developed precisely in the Western culture of industrial-market civilization." And also the thesis of M. P. Mchedlov: "because of tolerance, the world as a whole is fragmented." Based on a critical analysis of the concepts of tolerance, the author considers multiculturalism as a logical continuation and development of the ideas of tolerance. Based on the position of S. A. Stroev, which consists in the fact that multicultualism, the ideology of tolerance and political correctness act as "a means of destroying and atomizing society and destroying moral values that do not fit into the format of the market and consumer society," the author considers these phenomena exclusively in a destructive way. So, the article is written in a competent scientific language, the topic is relevant. The article is recommended for publication.
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