War and Peace Volume 2, Part 2, Chapter 12 Summary
The two of them head over to Andrei’s father’s estate to see Marya and the baby.
In the carriage Pierre starts in on Andrei again. At first he doesn’t want to tell him about the Masons, but then he decides he’s there to save Andrei’s soul.
He gives a long speech about how the Masons are above religion and are bringing out the best of people, connecting them to a Christian heaven through a spiritual linking chain.
Andrei seems interested.
Pierre asks if he believes in an existence after death, and finally we get the meat of what Andrei’s problem is.
He’s horribly, horribly guilt-ridden over his wife’s death and the fact that he didn’t get a chance to make up with her before she died. For him, this is proof that there’s life after death – because there has to be a way to atone to someone else.
They go inside, but just before they do, Andrei has the same experience of thinking deep thoughts about the infinite sky that he did when he fell wounded in the battle of Austerlitz.