The First World War forced the Russian intelligentsia to rethink its values—values that had been constructed in the 19th century. Distancing itself from pacifism and cultural relativism, it began to search for a moral meaning to the war that broke out in 1914—i.e. to defend the war as morally right and having a higher spiritual purpose. Russian philosophers were central to these debates, as they tried to interpret the war, and the relationship between war and peace, from a metaphysical point of view. The paper will look at philosophical, ethical and religious aspects of these debates, and some of the philosophers who participated in them.
The article is concerned with the notions of technology in essays of Ernst and Friedrich Georg Jünger. The special problem of the connection between technology and freedom is discussed in the broader context of the criticism of culture and technocracy discussion in the German intellectual history of the first half of the 20th century.