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What does Leo Tolstoy mean by "God sees the truth but waits"? full analizing about this title

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It is important not to neglect the last two words of the title: "But Waits." 

An important element of the story is that the truth comes out, but only after waiting a long time.  The reader knows from the very beginning that Aksionov is innocent; a clever reader also figures out fairly early that Makar Semyonich must be the real villain.  Justice, however, is not arrived at until the very end of the story, when--years later after the crime--Makar confesses and Aksionov dies a contented man.

The "moral" of the story is debatable.  Is Tolstoy saying that we must have faith that God will eventually bring justice to every situation?  Or is he cynically pointing out that justice sometimes arrives too late?  That is for you, the reader, to decide.

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sgillon | Student

God sees the truth, but waits..

Yes God sees the truth, but waits for the right time to reveal it.  Here God waits till Aksinov becomes an old grey-haired and mature man, with a broad outlook of life, so he can forgive Makar.  If the truth is revealed earlier, Aksinov would have taken revenge on Makar and repeat the same mistake.  Hence, truth does not serve any good,  God waited so that both Aksinov and Makar becaome virtuous at the end.  Indeed there is a purpose for everything HE does.  Here it was to teach Makar the importence of kindness and forgiveness.  

kitlevi46 | Student

God always sees the truth in whatever we do, in whatever we think. So we got the meaning of the 1st part of the title. The dabatable part is the "But waits." For me, God waited for the time that Aksionov will know who really killed the merchant. When he knew that Makar did it, God watched Aksionov on what this man will do. What will be his decision, either to seek revenge or forgive. Aksionov's decision of forgiving Makar truly made the big difference in this story. Think about if Aksionov did the opposing thing, seeked revenge and ruined Makar's life, then he is not so different with Makar. My point is God gave Aksionov this struggle, all of us are given a "struggle". It is up to us what path to take, either a path that makes our earthly decisions or a path that takes us to fully surrender to Him because we believe in His plans for us.


This is just my opinion.

kurdikurdistan | Student

Before beginning to start there is something needs to be mentioned is that this story contains two truths; the truth of being innocent, and the truth of being good person with a tough relationship between both of them.

It, I think, means that God sees the truth that Asikonov in his deepest inside is a good man and one of his faithful people who will dedicate his soul to him but he waited and gave him a slight punishment which was make him spend 26 years experience in prison to figure it out by himself because as we come to know at the early beginning of the story that he is not such a good man:

"Aksionov was a handsome, fair-haired, curly-headed fellow, full of fun, and very fond of singing. When quite a young man he had been given to drink, and was riotous when he had had too much; but after he married he gave up drinking, except now and then."

In the other hand, if the first truth had come out early that he is innocent, that time he wouldn't find the second truth (finding the reality about himself), so with the appearance of second truth, the first one came along but it took very long time, and as they say "after sadness comes happiness" so he will get rewarding in heaven I think.


dondon27 | Student

Basically God sees the truth but waits, means that God gives justice and truth on how it should be fairly given. However the time is not definite, since our sins have different degrees and it will just be forgotten on a span of time depending on how heavy your sins are. for the side of aksyonov it means that justice is not given right away, on the other hand it must be earned. for a young and innocent man like aksyonov he was rewarded of the highest degree of faith and reliance to God.

madhurji | Student

This, I think, means that sometimes, god waits before delivering his justice, not because he wants to hurt you but because the most appropriate punishment that the criminal deserves, and the most appropriate compensation that the victim deserves, can be awarded only after the passage of that time period. Nothing could be more rewarding for Aksionov than the attainment of that highest and most pleasurable state of consciousness in which, the self merges with the cosmos by letting go of its 'ego', and thus becomes omnipotent and omnipresent, and nothing could be more painful a punishment for Makar, than 'flogging' his soul, for the pain he had caused to an innocent fellow being. Any material compensation that god may have given to Aksionov, or any material punishment that he may have given to Makar, would have been 'lesser' than the most optimal ones. Ultimately, Aksionov's interpretation of his 'grey hair' dream comes out to be true, it indeed proves to be the most lucky day of his life.

rescueue | Student

God Sees The Truth But Waits!

God told the merchant's wife not to send him out on that day!

Also He showed her what is the consequence in the dream.

Please do not overlook God!

tipputhyagarajan | Student

In Leo Tolstoy's short story,"God sees the truth but waits",we can see how Ivan was led to a very pious living because of wrong accusation.God gave Ivan two paths to choose -either the path of revolt:fretting and fuming under miserable circumstances or complete surrender to God.Fortunately Ivan took the latter step.I can say that Ivan was more happy in the prison than in the outside world because-

*His wife suspected him.His children forgot him.So he couldn't have lived happily with such a family.Though he was surrounded by criminals they respected him and believed that he was wrongly accused.

*As he was a merchant he would have been bent upon the thoughts of making himself rich and not upon the thoughts of God.But in prison he had internal peace.

*Makar realized his mistake and became a good man only because of Ivan.

Thus we can see that Gd made him choose the path of salvation and internal peace.