What Marx REALLY said about Christianity

Jose G. Perez jgperez at SPAMnetzero.net
Fri Dec 22 22:11:41 MST 2000

    Soil Ride has distorted Marx by selective quotation. He has cut Marx off
in mid-sentence, to obscure the essence of what Marx said. He has also
truncated other parts of what Marx wrote without any hint of the omission.

    This is entirely appropriate to Soil Ride's message, although whether
this was intentional is something I have no way of knowing.

    But the fact is there is a very clear POLITICAL agenda behind this
selective quotation.

    "At the root of the Christian faith is the love for God and for
humanity," Ride pontificates. "As history progresses and determines to
liberate itself to the very defintion of liberation, God is indeed
revolutionary involved with the process of liberation of the human race."

    This is PRECISELY the kind of empty religious cant that Marx savaged in
that polemic. Someone Marx identifies as a "Prussian Consistorial
Counsellor" had written a bunch of pious nonsense to COVER UP that
religion is an instrument of CLASS rule.

    Marx quotes the Consistorial Counsellor: "We can save ourselves all this
tedious talk of Communism. If only those who have the vocation for it
develop the social principles of Christianity, then the Communists will soon
fall silent."

    And Marx answered:

    "The social principles of Christianity have now had eighteen hundred
years to be developed, and have no further need of development by Prussian
Consistorial Counsellors.

    "The social principles of Christianity justified the slavery of
antiquity, glorified the serfdom of the Middle Ages and are capable, in case
of need, of defending the oppression of the proletariat, even if with
somewhat doleful grimaces.

    "The social principles of Christianity preach the necessity of a ruling
and of an oppressed class, and for the latter all they have to offer is the
pious wish that the former may be charitable.

    "The social principles of Christianity place the Consistorial
Counsellor's compensation for all infamies in heaven, and thereby justify
the continuation of these infamies on earth.

    "The social principles of Christianity declare all the vile acts of the
oppressors against the oppressed to be either a just punishment for original
sin and other sins, or trials which the Lord, in his infinite wisdom,
ordains for the redeemed.

    "The social principles of Christianity preach cowardice, self contempt,
abasement, submissiveness and humbleness, in sort, all the qualities of the
rabble and the proletariat, which will not permit itself to be treated as
rabble, needs its courage, its self-confidence, its pride and its sense of
independence even more than its bread.

    "The social principles of Christianity are sneaking and hypocritical,
and the proletariat is revolutionary.

    "So much for the social principles of Christianity."

    (Karl Marx, The Communism of the Rheinischer Beobachter, MECW, vol. 6,
page 231.)

    Even while confessing the actual role of Christianity, Ride in the next
sentence takes it back, claiming HIS God is a "revolutionary" and that the
"root of the Christian faith" is "love ... for humanity."

    No, the REAL "root" of the Christian faith (and ALL OTHER religions in
class society) is not this pure, golden "love" for all of "humanity," but in
a base lust for gold, for filthy lucre. As for "love" for humanity, go
preach it to the ruling class and their torturers and assassins. Go preach
it to the Popes and Bishops and Reverends who sit on immense fortunes while
millions of children in the third world are starving.

    As for the rest of it, the divine cuckolding of Joseph, ritual
cannibalism and vampirism, God being his own son, and other "mysteries," it
is a pack of obscurantist nonsense opportunistically patched together from
the myths and legends of scores of other peoples.

     God is not revolutionary. If the all knowing, all powerful, all wise
God of the Christians exists, then I, for one, want no part of him. I am
with the Cuban Indian leader Hatuey, who as he was about to be burned at the
stake, refused to blessings of the Spanish priest, saying that if heaven was
full of people from Spain, then he wanted to go to hell.

    THAT is a real revolutionary attitude. But, of course, Hatuey and his
people were communists.


----- Original Message -----
From: "soil_ride" <soilride at email.msn.com>
To: <marxism at lists.panix.com>
Sent: Friday, December 22, 2000 10:50 PM
Subject: Marx and the Bible

  "The social principles of Christianity preach the need of a dominating
class and an oppressed class. The social principles of Christianity point to
heaven as the compensation for all the crimes that are committed on earth.
The social principles of Christianity explain all the viciousness of
oppressors as a just punishment either for original sin or other sins, or as
trials that the Lord, in infinite wisdom, inflicts on those the Lord has
redeemed. The social principles of Christianity preach cowardice,
self-hatred, servility, submission, humility-- in a word, all the
characteristics of a scoundrel."

    -Karl Marx, excerpt from The Communism of Paper Rheinischer Boebachter,

How could Marx have presented such an image of Christianity?

The other text from Isaiah 65:17-22:

  "For behold I create new heavens and a new earth; and the former things
shall not be remembered and come into mind. [We will have changed reality in
a such a way that no one will remember the past. The result is a global
change of structures.] But be glad and rejoice forever in that which I
create; for behold, I create Jerusalem rejoicing, and her people a joy. I
will rejoice in Jerusalem, and be glad in my people; no more shall be heard
in it the sound of weeping and the cry of distress or an old man who does
not fill out his days. ...They shall build houses and inhabit them; they
shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit. They shall not build and another
inhabit; they shall not plant and another eat; for like the days of a tree
shall the days of my people be, and my chosen shall long enjoy the work of
their hands."

This is the very concrete reality of the kingdom of God. The people will not
work for others but for themselves, the city will be called a "rejoicing"
and her people a "joy".

How could this have transformed into the description that Marx(and any other
philosopher at that) described? Because both statements are true.

At the root of the Christian faith is the love for God and for humanity. As
history progresses and determines to liberate itself to the very defintion
of liberation, God is indeed revolutionary involved with the process of
liberation of the human race.

Marx's detailed descriptions point out the very ugliness of which
Christianity has faltered, that Marx's statements are true to the last drop
and that Christianity has faltered in its process of liberation of man and
succumbed to the process of market expansion of the capitalist system which
exploits man through man against man.

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