“ANASTASIA”, the first book of the Ringing Cedars Series, tells the story of entrepreneur Vladimir Megre’s trade trip to the Siberian taiga in 1995, where he witnessed incredible spiritual phenomena connected with sacred ‘ringing cedar’ trees. He spent three days with a woman named Anastasia who shared with him her unique outlook on subjects as diverse as gardening, child-rearing, healing, Nature, sexuality, religion and more.
This wilderness experience transformed Vladimir so deeply that he abandoned his commercial plans and, penniless, went to Moscow to fulfill Anastasia’s request and write a book about the spiritual insights she so generously shared with him. True to her promise this life-changing book, once written, has become an international best-seller and has touched hearts of millions of people world-wide.
Anastasianism (Russian: Анастасианство, Анастасийство, Анастасиизм) or the Ringing Cedars (Звенящие Кедры; also “Jingling Cedars”) is a new religious movement, often classified as New Age, that started in central Russia in 1997 and has since spread across the world. Ringing Cedars’ Anastasians are sometimes categorised by scholars as part of Rodnovery (Slavic Neopaganism), and often as a modern Pagan movement of their own. Anastasianism has also been considered part of the broad spectrum of self-described “Vedic” religions arising in post-Soviet Russia.
The movement is based on the series of ten books entitled The Ringing Cedars of Russia written by Vladimir Megre. The knowledge contained in the books is attributed to a beautiful woman named Anastasia, the embodied form of a deity, who dwells in the Siberian taiga, whom Megre met during one of his trade expeditions. The books have been translated in twenty languages and have sold millions of copies. They offer a holistic worldview, teaching about humanity’s relationship with nature, God and the universe, the creation of the world, the power of thought in modelling reality and the future, a cyclical eschatology, the relationship between men and women, and education. Family, tradition and environmentalism are core values for the Anastasians.
Anastasianism proposes a whole new model of social organisation, that of the “kinship homesteads”, many of which constitute larger “kinship settlements”. The Anastasian movement has become one of the most successful new religious movements in Russia, and from there it has then spread to other Slavic countries, broader Eastern Europe, and communities have also been established in the West. In Russia, Anastasians have faced the hostility of the Russian Orthodox Church.