Part 8, Chapter 18 Summary
Throughout the entire day, during a variety of conversations in which he uses only the surface part of his mind, and despite the disappointment of not finding the change he expects in himself, Levin is joyfully conscious of the fullness of his heart. It is too wet to go for a walk after the rain, so the entire group spends the rest of the day in the house. There are no more discussions, and after dinner everyone is in a particularly amiable mood.
At first, Katavasov amuses everyone with his original jokes; then Sergey Ivanovitch convinces the professor to tell them all about his findings after studying the common housefly. After tea, Levin asks his brother to explain his views on the future of the “Eastern question,” and he is in such good spirits that he has the entire room enthralled. Kitty is the only one who does not hear it all, for she has gone to give the baby his bath. A few moments after she leaves the room, she sends for her husband.
Levin is curious and rather uneasy about why Kitty has summoned him, as it is something she rarely does. His mind is still busy thinking about Sergey Ivanovitch’s ideas about what it means to have forty million Slavonic men acting in concert with Russia; however, as soon as he finds himself alone in the hall his mind reverts at once to his thoughts of this morning. Suddenly the issues of this world seem quite small to him, and he is back in the same frame of mind he was in earlier that morning.
Before, Levin would have to review the entire train of thought which led him to his epiphany; now he is able to recall the feeling immediately, and his feeling of joy and peace is keener than ever. His thoughts cannot keep pace with his feelings. He looks again at the sky and knows that what he sees beyond the natural is not a deception. One question has bothered him, and he remembers it just before he gets to the nursery. If the chief proof of God...
(The entire section is 539 words.)