Atheism, Materialism, As Premises. "Part 2"

Carrol Cox cbcox at rs6000.cmp.ilstu.edu
Fri Dec 1 06:35:47 MST 1995


    It is 7:30 a.m. & perhaps the machine at ISU will let me type a
few more lines. (C. Cox)

    I left off: "But unlike atheism, it [materialism] cannot be *merely*
an intellectual premise, it must be lived, and that is difficult. This
explains part of the importance of Lenin's MEC. He is not trying to
"prove" materialism, as is seemingly assumed by those whose philosophy
exists strictly within the philosophy seminar, where nothing is real
except that seminar until it is "proved" within it. (Hence some idiot
in Radical America a couple decades back referring to Lenin's "philo-
sophically embarassing" MEC.) Lenin assumed materialism, and attempted
to show that certain philosophical positions were *not* materialist but
idealist. The silent assumption was that the comrades could hold to
such positions only by pretending to themselves that they were "really"
materialist; Lenin showed their idealist thrust (in particular that
all attempts to "combine" idealism and materialism were doomed).

    Next (I'm going by memory here, but I did read the book several times
and carefully about two decades ago) he took up the position of some
comrades that "idealism" was not all that destructive; he shows that
idealism ends in what he called "clericalism" (Aesopian language for
religion of any kind, but especially Christianity.)
......oops, acting up again
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