Shaping of the Ideology of the Russian Statehood in the 16th Century (On the Example of the Ritual of “Donkey Walk”)

Tyumen State University Herald. Humanities Research. Humanitates


Release:

2017, Vol. 3. №3

Title: 
Shaping of the Ideology of the Russian Statehood in the 16th Century (On the Example of the Ritual of “Donkey Walk”)


For citation: Shevchenko M. N. 2017. “Shaping of the Ideology of the Russian Statehood in the 16th Century (On the Example of the Ritual of “Donkey Walk”)”. Tyumen State University Herald. Humanities Research. Humanitates, vol. 3, no 3, pp. 156-169. DOI: 10.21684/2411-197X-2017-3-3-156-169

About the author:

Maksim N. Shevchenko, Cand. Sci. (Hist.), Lecturer, Omsk Theological Seminary of the Omsk Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate); maxsh1978@yandex.ru

Abstract:

The aim of this work is to reveal the mechanisms of formation of the sacral image of the Russian authorities in the context of development ideology on the example of the ritual “donkey walk”. This article examines the evolution of the ritual “donkey walk” in the light of the ceremonial and ritual practices of the Moscow State and the Russian Orthodox Church; the influence of the rite on the process of forming the ideology of power is studied. In this paper we used the historical-genetic and historical-comparative research methods. The author concludes that the ceremony “donkey walk” was performed in Russia in two cases: when placing metropolitans/patriarchs and on the Week of Palm Sunday. Throughout the 16th century the ritual “donkey walk” was not a frozen form. What was happening with it was associated with the shaping of the ideology of the secular and ecclesiastical authorities in Russia, the development of forms of representation of political and religious views, the evolution of Church-State relations. In the context of ideology development, the ceremony of “donkey walk” became a part of court etiquette, which provided a relay for a sacred image of power, rallying society around a monarch and Metropolitan on the basis of the principles of Christian anthropology, views about the parallelism of the heavenly and the earthly hierarchy of the authorities. Through ceremonies based on the biblical stories that formed the close relationship between “sacred” and “secular” tradition and modernity. Rituals similar to “donkey walk” were a kind of cultural marker, indicating the development of Russia in the Wake of Christian teaching about the meaning of history. The interweaving of everyday Chronicles of Moscow State and Church in the fabric of centuries-old Christian record, in the opinion of ideologists of Russian autocracy, was to give fundamentals of Church-State policies and the status of the Russian authorities of the 16th century. The Ritual “donkey walk” has become the personification of the updated views on the nature of power.

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