Lucid Marx

Shining Wisdom,

Shining Wisdom,

Antonio Gramsci (1891-1937) reminds all Marxists of a free and lucid psychological-physical space within which existence and the machinations of life unfold. This is the historical materialism of Marx (and Engels) understood free of any unnatural or ideological constraint, or artificial boundary. In a very real (and unimagined) sense, this reality represents what can be referred to as a ‘spiritual’ state whereby all human beings exist together in an uncontrived and unforced togetherness, that offers the security of group existence (and shared progression), and the flexibility of individual self-determination. As this existential reality is reliant upon the perceptual and cognitive awareness of its presence, it can be termed ‘spiritual’ if spirituality is directly related to the development of the mind, and the enhancing of its functionality. Even the old Soviet Union (1917-1991), in its English translations of Marxist texts, used the term ‘spiritual’ to refer to ‘consciousness’, and in so doing, marked a clear separation between socialist and communist theory, with that of the theology of the established Judeo-Christian tradition that had dominated Europe with its ecclesiastical imaginations for over a thousand years. The body of work recognised as ‘Marxism’ (whether or not Karl Marx himself would have agreed with this description), is in fact an unfolding understanding of the physical world and its functioning, from the point of view of the advanced and evolved conscious mind that is doing the observing and the defining. In this regard, the understanding of Marx resembles the teachings of the Buddha who lived in ancient India. This is because Buddhism is not a religion but a philosophy that includes the expansion of awareness through mind development, and an explanation and critique of the socio-economic situation (i.e. caste function and caste relations) prevalent at the time of the Buddha. Both Men – that is Marx and Buddha – possessed advanced minds that saw through the relative nature of the socio-economic situations of their times, and which further formulated a method for others to follow, so that they might achieve the same level of progressive freedom.

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