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Marxist views of religion are inadequate // The Marxist Critique of Religion: Dialectical Materialist Views – The Greanville Post

May 3rd, 2017 · No Comments

The marxist take on religion (despite Engels’ reasonable attempts to update the earlier materialism with an evolutionary view) is almost completely out of date. The origin of religion is actually an unknown, but the evidence of the eonic effect and in that context the Axial Age shows that conventional explanations secular or marxist are off the mark. The question of the material and the spiritual confuses all discussions. We don’t have to reject ‘materialism’ as such to consider the ‘spiritual’ aspect of religion. A consistent world view is lacking on all sides and the muddle created by religionists is even worse than that of reductionist sociology. The issue won’t go away and the nineteenth century views of Engels with the resulting dialectical materialism are no longer viable views for the left. Marxists fall into the trap of negating the ‘soul’ and cannot see that ‘magic’ is not some primitive superstition but an aspect of a species/man with a latent will. The religious mythologies of figures like Jesus have corrupted the original traditions here.

The Marxist Analysis of the Origins of Religion Marxism accepts the dictum of the earlier materialists, derived from Epicurus, that religion originated from the savage’s awe and fear in the face of an inexplicable nature. However, making use of subsequent comparative mythology and its own sociological insight, it has elaborated and expanded upon this observation. ‘All religion… is nothing but the fantastic reflection in men’s minds of those external forces which control their daily life,’ says Engels (On Religion, p.147), ‘a reflection in which the terrestrial forces assume the form of supernatural forces. In the beginnings of history it was the forces of nature which were first so reflected and which in the course of further evolution underwent the most manifold and varied personifications among various peoples.’

Source: The Marxist Critique of Religion: Dialectical Materialist Views – The Greanville Post

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