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Russian cosmism is a philosophical and cultural movement that emerged in Russia in the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries.
Cosmism entailed a broad theory of natural philosophy, combining elements of religion and ethics with a history and philosophy of the origin, evolution, and future existence of the cosmos and humankind. It combined elements from both Eastern and Western philosophic traditions as well as from the Russian Orthodox Church.[ citation needed ]
Cosmism was one of the influences on Proletkult, and after the October Revolution, the term came to be applied to "...the poetry of such writers as Mikhail Gerasimov and Vladimir Kirillov...: emotional paeans to physical labor, machines, and the collective of industrial workers ... organized around the image of the universal 'Proletarian', who strides forth from the earth to conquer planets and stars." [ citation needed ]This form of cosmism, along with the writings of Nikolai Fyodorov, was a strong influence on Andrei Platonov.
Many ideas of the Russian cosmists were later developed by those in the transhumanist movement.Victor Skumin argues that the Culture of Health will play an important role in the creation of a human spiritual society into the Solar System.
The Culture of Health is the basic science about Spiritual Humanity. It studies the perspectives of harmonious development of "Spiritual man" and "Spiritual ethnos" as a conscious creator of the State of Light into the territory of the Solar System" (by Skumin).
Among the major representatives of Russian cosmism was Nikolai Fyodorovich Fyodorov (1828–1903), an advocate of radical life extension by means of scientific methods, human immortality, and resurrection of dead people.
In 1881, Russian revolutionary and rocket pioneer Nikolai Kibalchich proposed an idea of pulsed rocket propulsion by combustion of explosives, which was an early precursor for Project Orion.[ citation needed ]
Konstantin Tsiolkovsky (1857–1935) was among the pioneers of theoretical space exploration and cosmonautics. In 1903, he published Изслѣдованіе міровыхъ пространствъ реактивными приборами (The Exploration of Cosmic Space by Means of Reactive Devices [Rockets]), the first serious scientific work on space travel. Tsiolkovsky believed that colonizing space would lead to the perfection of the human race, with immortality and a carefree existence. He also developed ideas of the "animated atom" (panpsychism), as well as "radiant mankind".[ citation needed ]
Other cosmists included Vladimir Vernadsky (1863–1945), who developed the notion of noosphere, and Alexander Chizhevsky (1897–1964), pioneer of "heliobiology" (study of the sun's effect on biology).A minor planet, 3113 Chizhevskij, discovered by Soviet astronomer Nikolai Stepanovich Chernykh in 1978, is named after him.
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