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The new has been welcomed in America; the old has been revered in Russia.

Communal spirit and togetherness distinguishes Russians from Westerners.

It's mission as the new center of Christianity was to unite the people of the East and West.

Russia has part of its roots in European culture where the ideas of goodness, honor, and freedom are understood as in the West. Russian blood is a mixture of Slavic, Finnish, and Tatar.Kievan Rus had converted to Orthodox Christianity in 988.Men kiss men and show affection, women hold hands while strolling.Recreation is often arranged in groups, often with colleagues they work with. Russians feel free to tell you if you or your child is not dressed warm enough.Pushing and shoving in crowds bring no hard feelings.

In restaurants Russians will not hesitate to join a table with strangers rather than dine alone.

Living for centuries in a very harsh climate explains the Russians' strength, their ability to endure extreme hardship, and their bleak outlook on life. Climate has also contributed to a cautiousness they exhibit.

Russia is a great distance from other centers of civilizations; for example, 3,000 miles from Paris, a month's journey before railroads.

Commerce is by its very nature conducive to compromise.

Nations raised on it instinctively seek a common ground for agreement, that exact point at which the other side might be prepared to make a deal.

Individualism and competitiveness are more common in the West; they are esteemed characteristics.