The discussions in Bratya Karamazovy (The Brothers Karamazov) about faith in God, the soul, and bad and good acts take place throughout the story, from beginning to end.
All the main characters take part in those discussions. However, Ivan, the oldest of the Karamazov brothers, has the most important role in the story due to his free thinking.
Ivan’s mind is polluted by atheism; his linear way of thinking does not perceive the world of God.
Feeling separated from others (i.e., other beings), Ivan continuously expresses his anti-divine’s ideas, including full rights for any action without punishment. The youngest of the Karamazov brothers, the devout Alyosha, calls Ivan’s mental statement “hell in the mind” and questions how Ivan can live like that.
Footman Smerdyakov is another “dark” personality in the movie. Looking to accomplish his dream of attaining 3,000 rubles belonging to his master (Ivan’s father), he stumbles upon Ivan’s concept that “you can do whatever you want because there is no God or immortal soul”.
Being a confederate of the Karamazov father, Smerdyakov makes a plan to get the money, but he is too afraid to cross a line – killing his master.
Smerdyakov needs someone who will approve of murder and Ivan, with his high density of consciousness, seems to be the right person for this purpose.
Ivan doesn’t state his approval of Smerdyakov’s plan, but for the footman, a quick glance is enough. What he reads in Ivan’s eyes gives him the green light for murder.
A mental wish for his father’s death leads Ivan to even more pollution of his mind; he approaches the spiritual realm of the darks and meets a demon. Even with a demon, Ivan continues his dispute about the reality of non-materialistic worlds, God and His existence without giving up his disbelief.
The end of the story clarifies how Ivan’s philosophy is wrong.
Unconscious fear of the coming karma and pangs of conscience force Smerdyakov to give away the stolen money and commit suicide. These actions help him reduce the heaviness of the negative karma, which has already started its punishment for the killing of a human.
Ivan, bringing the money to the court, accuses himself of the murder, but is not able to get rid of the demon.
The lesson learnt:
Every action in the physical world follows a mental statement – a thought, which is a product of the mind. A pure mind is a source of pure thoughts, while a polluted mind produces polluted thoughts and, following them, destructive actions.