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|Subject: Marx on god|
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Date Posted: 06:03:15 10/06/05 Thu
If anyone "killed God" I think the blame can best be laid at the door of Marx and Engels. Hindus held that all reality was an illusion (a view which is more or less confirmed by modern physics). Christians believed there was a God in Heaven, a Devil in Hell, and we were more or less trapped "here on Earth", waiting our death and transition to Heaven or Hell. Those who built the cathedrals may well have felt the God they could not see was more important - and real - than the stones with which they worked. We lived in a world buffeted by angels and spirits of one kind or another, with God keeping, always, his personal eye on each of us.
We had been taught that our "consciousness" had been given to us by God. But along comes Marx and says no, all that we are, all that we think and believe, is a reflection of the material world. As the world changes, so does our consciousness. The reason the Old Testament is less bloody in its later books is not because "God has changed" but because human society has changed and so the view of God has changed. The reason the Christian Gospels are so different in their view of God than the God of the Old Testament is, again, because we have changed - not God.
Marx erases God, the Devil, the host of angels, all creatures of superstition and fear. We are reflections of the world in which we grow up. (Part of the "material environment" which shapes us is that seemingly non-material framework of family, culture, class, sex, or race into which we are born - yet Marx says that these, too, have a material basis). To the old question of whether we owe more to genes or to environment, Marx would say "both are material aspects that shape us".
Marxism is clearly an atheist positon. Not agnostic. It is not "uncertain" about God, but emphatically clear that God is no more than a creation of human culture. No wonder Marxists found themselves involved not only in a struggle with the ruling class but with organized religion (which are, after all, at the service of the ruling class). But if materialism destroyed God, leaving us alone on the planet, at the mercy of storms and plagues and famines, without recourse to hope of rescue by spells and prayers, so it also meant that we could shape and change our future. If the material world shaped us and our culture, so, if we transformed the relationship with the means of production, or the mode of production, we would find we had changed the world itself.
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|Re: Marx on god||joel||06:06:01 10/28/05 Fri|
|Re: Marx on god||gdghg||05:09:53 05/06/06 Sat|
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