With God On Our Side

One of the most prevalent imageries depicted through the course of these stories is the inclusion of God and religious allusions, but specifically in the context of good and evil. This is especially noticeable when discussion battles, where the writers of the story (supposedly those who survived and flourished after these events) had God backing them and their cause; while the others were backed by evil. This is exemplified in multiple stories, such as on page 22 when the author claims that “While Vladimir was desirous of attacking Iaroslav, the latter sent overseas and imported Varangian reinforcements, since he feared his father’s advance. But God will not give the devil any satisfaction. For when Vladimir fell ill, Boris was with him at the time.” This shows that the author believed that what happened in history occurred because God was backing these results. Similarly, on page 25, “God had let loose the pagans upon us because of our transgressions, the Russian princes fled and the Polovtsians were victorious.” This exhibits both values because it shows the prevalence of religious thinking in the interpretations of the people of the time who were experiencing those events. In terms of power, it showed that the leaders of the time were thought of to have the backing of the Gods, and that they themselves (and their decisions that they made for their population) were blessed to a certain extent. Evidently this altered over time as the populous gained more control of their leadership, but for some time the decisions of the leaders were the only decisions acceptable backed by the Gods.