Materialism – A Brief Introduction


Materialism is a set of related theories which hold that entitles and processes are composed of – or are reducible to – matter, material forms or physical processes. All events and facts are explainable, actually or in principle, in terms of body, material objects or dynamic material changes or movements. In general, the metaphysical theory of materialism entails the denial of the reality of spiritual beings, consciousness and mental or psychic states or processes, as ontologically distinct form, or independent of material changes or processes. Since it denies the existence of spiritual beings or forces, materialism typically is allied with atheism and agnosticism.’

The English word ‘matter’ has its origins in the Latin words ‘mater’ (i.e. ‘mother’), and ‘materia’ (i.e. ‘all physical things’). As existence is composed of matter, matter is viewed as the foundation of all things. Generally speaking, all matter is said to possess both volume and mass. Within the Chinese language, the concept of ‘matter’ can be expressed using the ideograms ‘物质’ (wu4zhi2). ‘物’ (wu4) is written using the left-hand particle ‘牛’ (nui2) – meaning ‘cow’, ‘bull’, or ‘ox’, and the right-hand particle ‘勿’ (wu4) – originally meaning ‘flag’. When combined together, the ideogram ‘物’ (wu4) literally means ‘matter’, ‘things’, and ‘objects’. ‘质’ (zhi2) is written using the ideogram ‘贝’ (bei4) – meaning a hard sea shell, and the right-hand particle ‘斦’ (yin2) – originally written as ‘two axes’, but also used to refer to a measure of weight equalling around one kilogram (i.e. ‘two catty’). Within Chinese thought, when taken together, the concept of ‘物质’ (wu4zhi2) represents the entirety of existence, or by implication, that physical substance which possesses  (measurable) mass and volume. Ancient India, despite its association with spirituality within popular culture, developed a school of materialist thinking named ‘Lokayata’ (लोकायत) in Sanskrit, which suggests a system of developed thought grounded in the observation (or perception) of the physical world (which is directly accessible to the senses). This school rejected all religious thought that advocated karma and karmic retribution, a belief in ‘invisible’ theistic constructs, and any notion of ‘rebirth’ or ‘reincarnation’. Therefore, the validity of inference and the authority of scripture are firmly rejected. For the Lokayata followers, only that information directly perceived through the senses is real. The Lokayata developed a theory of physical existence that involved four basic elements which combine to generate all of material reality. As a consequence of this thinking, Lokayata is associated with ‘atheism’. The origin of this school is problematic (due to the loss of primary texts), but evidence suggests a date anywhere between 600 – 300 BCE – with the possibility that the ideas associated with this school could be far older.

Whatever the case, the Buddhist Pali suttas mention the Lokayata, which is associated within the tradition of Buddhist commentary, as representing a ‘hard materialism’ (not favoured by the Buddha). However, detailed with the ‘five aggregates’ teaching of the Buddha, it is clear that his system of mind-matter integration is a form of ‘soft materialism’, which recognises a plurality, (but not a duality). This is because the Buddha’s system is premised upon ‘rupa’ (रूप) – or ‘physical matter’, which he defines as particles (paramanu) that flash in and out of existence (similar to the observed behaviour of sub-atomic particles within quantum physics). The Buddha sees the physical world as ‘existing’, but being non-substantial and changeable in nature. This ‘Buddhist’ definition of matter is different to that of the ‘Ucchedavada’ (ဥေစၧဒ) – which the Buddha criticised for assuming a permanent and unchanging physical world – despite the fact that the Buddha agreed with the Ucchedavda that there is no ‘atma’, or permanent soul. The Buddha’s soft materialism deviates away from the hard materialism of the Ucchedavada (which maybe directly linked to the Lokayata), by stressing that karma does function (in a limited, non-theistic sense), and that moral behaviour is required to escape worldly suffering.

Western scholars tend to date the Buddha as living either 563-480 BCE, or 483-400 BCE, whilst within traditional Chinese Buddhism, his date is given as 1028/29-948/49. Obviously, the Buddha’s existence, if dated accurately, would determine the antiquity of the Indian schools of materialism. In ancient Greece, however, the materialist origins of philosophy are said to have developed through the thinking of Democritus (460-370 BCE), who conceived of the universe as being composed of tiny, irreducible atoms unobservable to the naked eye. These atoms operate in a deterministic fashion, and combine to form the various forms associated with physical existence. Epicurus (341-270 BCE) – the student of Democritus, developed this thinking by asserting that every so often atoms ‘swerved’, as a means to explain unusual behaviour or happenings in the physical world. Ancient India developed a theory of materialism, whilst Buddhism developed a theory of the atom, but the (modern) Western world follows the ancient atomic models as devised within the Greek philosophical tradition. Whatever the origin, the doctrine of materialism stands in philosophical opposition to that of ‘idealism’. Idealism is usually understood as advocating that ‘mind’ is primary, and that the physical world exists only as an expression or appearance of that mind. This suggests that the physical world is not truly ‘material’, but rather ‘psychological’, or ‘mental’ in origination and nature. Within the Western philosophical tradition, theistic idealism is associated with Berkley, transcendental idealism of Kant, and the absolute idealism of Hegel. Idealism is often interpreted as being a secular version of theology, and directly related to ‘creationism’, whereby the physical world is viewed as being created by an unseen theistic entity (theology), or ‘projected’ into existence by the agency of mind (idealism), as if by an act of will and/or perception.

Within the subject of ‘philosophy of mind’, the theory of materialism has three distinct definitions, the first two of which represent ‘hard’ materialism, and the third ‘soft’ materialism:

  1. Eliminativism. This theory seeks to ‘eliminate’ entirely any notion of ‘mind’, and all theories of ‘psychology’ from modern science, on the grounds that such notions are the product of misunderstanding, and akin to ‘fairy tales’ that are the product of the residue of religious thinking. How human beings perceive their own minds is viewed as erroneous and the consequence of historical and cultural conditioning. As a consequence, as there is ‘no mind’ in reality, there can be no true experience of ‘raw feelings’ (qualia), or the exercise of intentionality. Theories of psychology are viewed as expressions of out-dated science which need to be abandoned as a necessary means to progress scientific understanding.
  2. Reductionism. In its simplest form, ‘reductionism’ reduces all psychological states to that of easily observable and measurable behaviour (i.e. ‘behavourism’). This reduces mind states to a mode of expression acceptable to modern science. Mind processes might exist as a function of the physical brain, but are viewed as knowable only through the measuring of behaviour. Other than as a producer of behaviour, the mind cannot be directly understood (because although it might generate qualia and intentionality, it does not ‘independently’ exist), and is of no further interest to reductionist.
  3. Irreducibility of mind. Although it might be accepted that ‘mind’ could exist as an apparent independent entity, nevertheless, its existence is so inherently related to matter, that this apparent ‘independence’ is not an issue. The mind is related to matter in a matter far more profound than mere causal independence. This means that the irreducibility of the mind is not a threat to the primacy of the materialist theory. Mind is a product of matter, even if the exact process of the emergence of consciousness from matter is as yet not fully understood.

Karl Marx studied Hegel’s absolute idealism, and understood it (through the work of Feuerbach) to be ‘inverted’ in nature. When turned the right way around, Marx developed the theory of ‘historical materialism’ (which replaced Hegel’s theory of ‘historical idealism’). The theory of historical materialism is ‘scientific’ in nature, and states that it is the economic reality of a society that determines the physical reality of that society. This is an ongoing historical process that does not allow for any ‘divine intervention’ in the affairs of humanity. It is through this materialist theory that Marx explains the historical reasons why it is that the impoverished working class (i.e. proletariat) exists in a subordinated and exploited manner, whilst being dominated by affluent middle class (i.e. bourgeisie), and how it is that this situation contains within itself, the seeds of its own inevitable transformation (through the agency of ‘revolution’). On this point, Marx states ‘In the social production of their life, men enter into definite relations that are indispensable and independent of their will, relations of production which correspond to a definite stage of development of their material productive forces. The sum total of these relations of production constitutes the economic structure of society, the real foundation, on which rises a legal and political superstructure and to which correspond definite forms of social consciousness. The mode of production of material life conditions the social, political and intellectual life process in general. It is not the consciousness of men that determines their being, but, on the contrary, their social being that determines their consciousness.’ (Preface: A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy). Marx goes on to say that at some point in time, the material productive forces if become so strong that they out-grow the current organisation of society, and come into direct conflict with the existing (bourgeois) relations of society. As the workers become aware of their own material and productive powers, they mass organise and initiate an era of social revolution, eventually seizing the means of production, and radically transforming society through the agency of a socialist revolution. This is the playing-out of class antagonisms, and explains why Russian Marxist Georgi Plekhanov further developed this idea (in 1891), by referring to this process as ‘dialectical materialism’. This was developed from the work of Friedrich Engels (found in his book entitled ‘Dialectics of Nature’) whereby Engels uses the term ‘materialist dialectics’ as a means to combat and neutralise ‘idealistic dialectics’. The theory of scientific socialism as developed by Marx and Engels adopts a materialist outlook to explain human society and the human condition, but Marx and Engels rejected two forms of materialism prevalent in the 19th century, namely those of the ‘mechanistic’ and the ‘metaphysical’ variety. Marx rejected the mechanistic view because it suggested nothing could be changed, and he rejected metaphysical view because he recognised the existence and purpose of a human consciousness – even if it is generated from the brain and conditioned by outer circumstances and events. Marx views the immense productive forces of labour as the driving force behind the unfolding of history. The unfolding of the historical process is not a passive or indifferent passing of events, but is a dynamic, directing and transformative force within human affairs. Metaphysical materialism, strictly speaking denies the existence of this dialectical and historical materialism that Marx clearly sees as operating throughout human history, where it has reached a particular intensity after the Industrial Revolution. The concept of ‘dialectics’ within Marxism can also be applied to personal education, and the development of a proletariat mind that is freed of the oppression and limitations of the past, and which is collective in outlook, and thoroughly progressive and scientific in nature. This maybe taken as the use of Hegel’s dialectic of thesis, antitheses and synthesis – reworked to interpret the changes of the material world (through the negation of the negation) rather than the changes of the ‘idealistic’ (or ‘religious’) world.



Communist University in South London (CUiSL)



Ruskin House (Croydon)

Communist Party of Britain

Croydon Communists (Blog)

Venue:  Party Centre, (Top Floor) of Ruskin House, 23 Coombe Road, Croydon CR0 1BD

(Please attend these classes if possible, however, as these classes are preceded by a Branch Meeting, please continue to send apologies to if you cannot attend).

Details Provided By Dr Martin Graham – Branch Secretary:

The Communist University in South London is facilitated by the Croydon (South London) Branch of the Communist Party of Britain (CPB), and is held on the 3rd Thursday of each month (possibly excepting August and December), running from 19hrs – 21hrs (with those participating arriving at least 10 minutes before the start time to ensure ‘promptness’ of schedule). The first 30 minutes is taken-up with Branch Meeting details, followed by 90 minutes of educational discussion and debate focused around a specific topic, interpreted through a Marxist-Leninist dialectical analysis. There are no fees or top-down lecturing, with the discussion delivered in a democratic forum open to everyone who wishes to learn about Marxism, and how to apply it, so as to effect change in the world.



Trumpism: The New Neo-Liberal Mythology


The first and primary rule of the capitalist system is that as a vicious, one-dimensional economic ideology, it will always protect itself, and present itself in the best expedient light. Although justifying capitalist ideology runs through endless cycles of ‘re-invention’ and ‘new’ perspective, the underlying reality of the pathological search for monetary profit and the political power it attracts, remains exactly the same, even if its surface nature twists and turns in its attempt to appear contemporary and relevant.  The simple fact of the matter is that those (as a distinct class) who possess control of the greater part of profit, also possess the decisive balance of political power. This is why, within liberal (capitalist) societies, capitalism can never be ‘voted’ out of power as part of a democratic process, but merely permits the electorate to ‘choose’ (every four or five years) who is to represent and administer the capitalist system in their name. This supposedly ‘democratic’ system ‘ropes’ everybody into the lie that ‘capitalism’ is the ideology of choice for the majority of voters.  In reality, capitalism is the ideology of choice of those in a society that already own the means of production and possess the greater part of the profit, and the corresponding majority of the political power. In other words, regardless of what politicians say to gain your vote, capitalism always wins.  The concept of ‘choice’ within the capitalist system is nothing other than a bourgeois sham.

What does this mean for the recent election of the billionaire Donald Trump to the Presidency of the United States of America?  It means that those who possess the most money within the capitalist system, have access to the greatest amount of political power.  The ‘new’ mythology developing throughout the political spectrum is that Donald Trump’s election is ‘unusual’, or marks some-kind of substantial ‘shift’ in the balance of capitalist power, or ideological emphasis amongst the electorate.  This idea of ‘specialness’ has infiltrated not only the political rightwing (which is to be expected, as Trump for this group, represents something akin to the second-coming of ‘White’, racist Christ), but has also permeated the (Marxist-Leninist) Communist and Socialist left.  This demonstrates the moribund nature of those who refer to themselves as ‘Revolutionaries’, or ‘Marxist-Leninists’, when in fact they are nothing but ‘fetish’ capitalists that use a form of leftist nostalgia to co-operate with the forces of capital, operating under the false flag narrative that the victory of capitalism is inevitable.  Of course, outside of this distorted interpretation of Marxist-Leninism, the Trotskyites have always adhered to this of co-operating with the forces of capitalism..  True Marxist-Leninist critique does not ascribe ‘specialness’ to any capitalist leader, regardless of that leader’s political views.  Capitalism as an ideology, is the enemy of the people it exploits, and all capitalist leaders are, by definition, exploiters of the people.

Capitalism was invented by rich, White Europeans, and has always favoured that class and ethnicity.  Non-Whites are tolerated providing they align themselves with Eurocentric ideology and ‘know’ their subordinate place within it (take the example of President Barak Obama – a Black man – who along with Hilary Clinton, presided over the Nazification of Eastern Europe, and allowed US police to embark upon an epidemic of the murder of unarmed Black men during his term in office).  The election of Donald Trump is not the ‘end’ of the neo-liberal, capitalist system, but rather its dramatic confirmation.  The USA is an institutionally racist country that routinely votes in White racists, or in the case of Barak Obama – an African-American who fully aligns himself with the Eurocentric project.  Why has there been so much ‘mock’ surprise and horror at the election of Donald Trump, when the same country has in the past elected the rightwing (and senile) Ronald Reagan (who reduced life in the real world to films he had once starred in), as well as the father and son Bush team, and of course the corrupt Bill Clinton?  Going back further, there was Harry Truman – a rightwing Christian bigot and architect of the Cold War.  US election history is strewn with examples of White, racist bigots elected to political office.  Making Donald Trump out to be something ‘special’ is the misreading of history, and the misuse of historical materialism.

Such a flawed analysis attempts to elevate Donald Trump to the status of religious martyr – nothing less than a White man standing up for the White race.  This ‘new’mythology suggests that the White race, after centuries of vicious imperialist expansion and colonisation, is ‘re-invented’ as some-how being the victim of its own success.  All of a sudden, the non-White victims of White imperialism are forced to ‘change places’ with their White oppressors without question.  Those whose hands firmly held the whip in the past, re-interpret their own history as being victims of the very whip they once held.  Donald Trump is not special in any historical manner.  He is symptomatic of the ‘inverted’ bourgeois mentality that turns reality upon its head.  White people are not the victims of imperialism, because as a class and an ethnicity, they are the perpetuaters of imperialism.  White people, as a class and an ethnicity, invented and applied ‘racism’ to all non-White peoples.  In the world that Donald Trump inhabits, it is the White race that is ‘beleaguered’ by its own political power and economic success.  The only distinguishing feature about Donald Trump is that he has been open and honest about his racism from start to finish.  This honesty is merely a matter of political expediency, and does not make Donald Trump ‘special’.  Nor does his election mean the end of the neo-liberal establishment – on the contrary – a White racist nation  has elected a White racist billionaire.  The excesses of capitalism cannot be ‘reformed’ out of existence, and the natural division of labour it practises (and the logical development of racism that division entails), cannot be legislated out of existence.  The election of Donald Trump is not an aberration, but rather a confirmation of the racist American system.

Discovering Utopia: Lost Archives of Soviet Design – London (10.9.2016)






Soviet Technological Designs 1960-1980 Exhibition

By Adrian Chan-Wyles (PhD)


Moscow Design Museum – Facebook

The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) covers the time period 1917 – 1991, and marks one of the greatest and progressive epochs in the history of the developmet and evolution of humanity, the world has ever known.  Founded by Lenin (and the Bolshevik Communist Party he led), and inspired by the theory of Scientific Socialism (as developed by Karl Marx and Frederick Engels), the ideology of the USSR sought to uproot and eradicate the ‘inverse’ bourgeois mind-set (that viewed reality the wrong way around), and which was the underlying and guiding principle of a ruthless and predatory capitalism (that split the world into competing classes that saw the proletariat doing all the work in poor conditions, whilst the Bourgeoisie controlled society and took all the profits of this labour for its own benefit).  The Soviet Communist Revolution put an end to society being controlled by theology, (or a historical idealism that assumed that physical matter was created as ‘an act of will’ by a theistic-entity), and replaced it with a progressive proletariat mind-set that saw the human mind used the right way around.  This non-inverted mind-set understood that the physical world was not the consequence of gods creating matter out of thin air, or of talented individuals creating, dissipating or displacing matter simply by choosing to do so, but was rather the clearly observable consequence of a chain of cause and effect events, manifesting in the material world.  Marx referred to this understanding as ‘historical materialism’.


Reality, according to Marx, cannot be reduced to the interior of an individual brain (idealism), operating within a single skull, but is in fact the product of concrete causes leading directly to equally concrete effects manifesting in the physical world, fuelled by dialectical (class) antagonisms (materialism).  When the working class is permanently ‘freed’ from living in the state of oppression, and takes power from the bourgeoisie, (as happened in Russia in 1917), then that class takes over the means and forces of production throughout society, and is ample to start afresh, using the human mind in an entirely ‘new’ and ‘refreshing’ manner to that of the greed-infested and selfish bourgeoisie.  Instead of being hemmed-in by the concerns of exploitative capitalism with its perpetual search for profit, the proletariat mind-set is able to harness the progression of science without ideological constraint, and through the use of an enhanced imagination, seek-out and create new designs for technology that permeate the entirety of society, and which are premised on making life ‘better’ for every citizen.  This is effectively the application of the Communist ideal of ending all suffering and exploitation throughout society through the use of ‘futurism’, or the principle of formulating in theory new ways of doing things (a process unencumbered by convention), and striving to advance science as it exists today, to meet the new ‘imagined’ designs of tomorrow.  Imagination in this progressive sense, is not that associated with theology, but is rather a speculative use of the cause and effect of science (historical materialism), and the theorising without limit of how things could or might develop, given the right or appropriate creative stimulus.


The Moscow Design Museum was founded in 2012 and charged with assembling and preserving a Soviet Era Archive that records Communist technological endeavour in both theory and practice.  This exhibition is currently being held in London at the West Wing of Somerset House, and is comprised of hundreds of black and white, and colour photographs mounted on a lighted background, with videos projected onto the wall featuring subtitled interviews with former Soviet scientists, designers and other innovators of the era.  Usually a single Russian administrator from the Moscow Design Museum over-sees the room, and is tasked with explaining each and every aspect of the exhibition to those attending.  Of course, the USSR was far advanced than its capitalist counter-parts, so much so, that at different times in history between 1960’s and the 1980’s, France and Italy collaborated with a Soviet system both country’s officially opposed, to better the design of products manufactured in the West.  It was implicitly acknowledged that the capitalist system was limited by its need to keep manufacturing prices down, whilst simultaneously attempting to manufacture a product that the exploited masses wanted to consume.


The Soviet system did not suffer from this limitation, but instead created goods and devices that were made entirely with the well-being of the Soviet citizen in mind.  It is interesting to note that many Soviet innovations were ‘integrated’ into Western capitalist designs (making the products immeasurably more sellable), without ever acknowledging (in public) the Soviet contribution, as this would have undermined and contradicted the anti-Soviet rhetoric of the US-inspired ‘Cold War’.  The middle of the room contained cardboard chairs which were lightweight, and yet very strong.  These were developed in the USSR to accommodate large meetings of people – such as government officials – in a manner that did not unnecessarily absorb valuable resources, or descend into the bourgeois excess of pointless self-indulgence or self-aggrandisement.


As modern Russia strives to come to terms with the collapse of the USSR coupled with the continuous anti-Russian racism emanating from the US and the EU, the message is clear – when the mind operates the right way around there exists a natural and advanced science that not only brings order out of chaos, but develops that order beyond the limits of bourgeois hypocrisy.  ACW 11.9.2016





















Be Vigilant Against Those who Denigrate Chinese Communism


Original Chinese Language Article By: Tian Xinming (田心铭)

Source: ‘Red Flag Article’ 2015/19

(Translated by Adrian Chan-Wyles PhD)

Translator’s Note:  This is an English translation of the original political Chinese language text entitled ‘警惕“共产主义虚无缥缈”论’, or ‘Be Vigilant Against the “Communism is an Illusion” Theory’.  I have retained the original Chinese language text to assist historical and political researchers.  This text was published on the Chinese internet in 2015, and concerns (General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party) Xi Jinping’s guidance and advice concerning the correct interpretation and application of Marxist-Leninist thinking in relation to the historical and socio-economic conditions that exist in China. Although there are many such texts like this extant in China, very few exist in the West due to capitalist political bias, and the racist attitudes of the Western bourgeoisie.  This has left an unchallenged and ignorantly defined ‘free interpretive space’ in the West, which has been filled with all kinds of anti-China propaganda and deliberately false political and cultural misinterpretation, alternative commentary, disinformation and non-fact related paradigms.  All this has been to the continued misrepresentation and detriment of Communist China.  This rightwing and racist misrepresentative attitude toward China has been actively assisted by the Trotskyite left, and elements of Eurocentricism hiding-out within the otherwise legitimate Marxist-Leninist movements in the West.  In fact, the anti-Chinese racism that exists in the West is extraordinarily potent and hate-filled.  It is aimed at ALL Chinese people – whether capitalist or Communist – but is particularly virulent in its continued attacks upon Mainland Communist China.  As Xi Jinping points-out, ignorance is a matter of bad education, that is rectified through the application of good education.  This text provides a reliable foundation for the factual reality that China is a Socialist country that is pursuing the Revolutionary path toward Communism as defined by Marx-Engels and Marxist-Leninism.  General Secretary Xi Jinping explains that China is adhering to a ‘minimum’ and ‘maximum’ developmental plan.  Lenin mentions this plan in his 1904 text entitled ‘Two Steps Forward and One Step Back’.  This plan was adopted at the Second Congress of the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party in 1903, and more details can be found in the text entitled the ‘History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (Bolshevik), Short Course (Page 41).  The maximum aspect of this programme deals directly with a working class party achieving a Socialist Revolution, through the over-throw of capitalism and the full and effective establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat, whereas the minimum aspect of this programme covers the immediate aims of the Party, and the policy direction required to achieve the over-throw of capitalism and the establishment Socialism.  This means working towards making life better for the workers within a post-revolutionary society, as it develops toward a Socialist society.  Obviously China has achieved her ‘Socialist’ Revolution, but has not yet achieved a fully ‘Socialistic’ society.  According to General Secretary Xi Jinping, China is in the initial stage of building a Socialist society, and is applying Marxist theory to progress to Socialism as a precursor to the realisation of Communism in China.  This process, according to Marx and Engels, will take a varying length of time depending upon local socio-economic conditions, and the conditions prevailing in various world-wide historical epochs. ACW 16.8.2016

Since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (2012), Xi Jinping (习近平), the General Secretary of Communist Party of China (CPC), has continuously stressed to Members and Leading Party Cadres at all levels of the CPC, that they must be determined to uphold all noble ideals of Communism, and strengthen its presence across the broad masses.  He has also criticised those who have expressed the false notion that ‘Communism is an Illusion’.  In this regard, Xi Jinping has stated:

‘Communism as an ideal, is not as simple as cooking ‘potatoes and roast beef’.  The principles of Communism are not that easy to obtain, and the development of Communism cannot be rushed, as its construction requires a long and drawn-out process that does not immediately exist at your finger-tips.  To think that Communism is an illusion simply because it is not readily observable here and now (in its fully developed state), is a betrayal of the Communist Party and all that it stands for.  Furthermore, such an opinion betrays the true Revolutionary ideals of the past, which must be retained with vigour, from one generation to the next.  The realisation of Communism is the ideal of all true Communists without exception, and its pursuance of this struggle from one generation to the next, represents the upholding of the highest Revolutionary ideals.’

(Xi Jinping: To Jiao Yulu [焦裕禄] – County Party Secretary – 2015, p. 15)

This speech, delivered by General Secretary Xi Jinping, had a strong practical relevance to it.  It inspired the majority of Party Members and Cadres firmly toward the continuing pursuance of the Communist ideal, so that the nation may advance along the road of Socialist development (with Chinese characteristics).

1) Communism is premised Upon the Rational Theory of Scientific Socialism. 

Marxism is the guiding ideology of the Communist Party of China.  The ultimate aim of the Party is to realise Communism (through the study and application of the Scientific Socialism of Marx) – these two aspects are inseparable.  Some have advocated the false ‘Communism is an Illusion’ theory, claiming that this is an observable fact. This is in reality a denial of all Communist ideals, and is an attack on Marxism.  For instance, these people have stated such things as ‘Marxism is utopian’, or ‘Communism is a fiction’, etc.  This misrepresentation of Communist ideals stems from a lack of understanding of Marxism.  To firmly understand the genuine Communism ideals, there must first be an in-depth study of Marxism, so that it is understood that its ideals and beliefs are premised upon scientific theory, and the rational use of the mind.

General Secretary Xi Jinping, stated that Leading Cadres must study deeply the ideals and perspectives, so that the Marxist theory may be mastered in all its profound aspects. For Leading Cadres, he demanded that very high standards should be expected and upheld.  He said:

‘Learn to master Marxist theory as a special skill’, ‘Continue to comprehend, and constantly penetrate through study, so that everything is learned properly, and thought is enlightened’ and ‘Truly devout Marxists are dedicated to developing a deep ideological understanding and sound conviction’. (Ibid., P. 5)

Why should individuals only study the correct Marxist communist ideals? It is because the core ideals of Communism emerge from within the theory of Marxism.  Marxist rational thought is Scientific Socialism (which is also termed Scientific Communism).  Before Karl Marx formulated his theory, the material conditions for the emancipation of the proletariat were not yet present, and therefore notions of Socialism and Communism were only utopic or fantastical in nature (i.e. lacking any scientific basis). In his 1890 Preface to the German Edition of the ‘Communist Manifesto’, Frederick Engels, whilst discussing 1847 (the year that Karl Marx and himself wrote this text), states that Communism ‘was still a rough-hewn, only instinctive and frequently somewhat crude communism’ pursued by the workers.  He continued ‘Yet, it was powerful enough to bring into being two systems of utopian communism — in France, the “Icarian” communists of Cabet, and in Germany that of Weitling.’  (Collected Works of Marx and Engels. Vol. 2, p. 21).  From this observation it can be seen that the workers did not yet possess a scientific theory to guide them.  Marx and Engels created a new scientific world view, and transformed utopic Socialism and Communism from fantasy into a science.  They also created the world’s first Marxist Workers’ Party – known as the Communist League. The drafting of the ‘Communist Manifesto’ was requested by the General Assembly on behalf of the Alliance, as a means to clearly explain and define its political programme.  The publishing of the ‘Communist Manifesto’ was both a sign of the advent of Marxism, and also a sign of the birth of the Communist Party. This fact indicates that the Communist ideal of Marxists, from the outset, was premised entirely upon a scientific theory that drew a line between ‘utopic’ Communism and Socialism, and the Communism of Scientific Socialism.  Marxism is a complete and rigorous scientific system.  Marx provides a comprehensive Communist theory premised upon a rigorous and logical argument. Practical Marxism was born well over a hundred years ago, and millions of people have striven to apply the teachings of Socialism, and transform it from a theory to reality, as it has spread from one country to another.  Of special interest, is the development of Socialism with Chinese characteristics, a process which has not only enriched the content of Marxism, but which has also provided a strong practical example of its efficacy in material reality.

Party Members and Cadres should establish a thorough and conscientious study of the Marxist Communist ideal (as contained in the Classic works of Marx and Engels), as directed by the General Secretary Xi Jinping.  This study should be both honest and sincere.  This study should not be superficial, but deep and profound, as it must be understood how Marx and Engels developed the Communist theory of Scientific Socialism, and how this Socialism is separate and distinct from ‘utopic’ Socialism.  True Scientific Communism can be established in the material world, if the Marxist theory of Scientific Socialism is properly understood.  In 1877, Engels wrote a brief biography of Karl Marx, and in March, 1883, Engels published his ‘Speech at the Grave of Marx’.  Engels clarified that Marx identified two important and fundamental elements of the theory of Scientific Socialism, which were the materialist conception of history, and the special capitalist mode of production that gives rise to bourgeois society.  Engels said that the application of the materialist conception of history, revealed the hitherto hidden concept of capitalist production and profit accumulation through surplus value.  These are the ‘two great discoveries’ of Marx’s life.   ‘Modern Scientific Socialism is based on these two important evidence-based findings.’ ‘Because of these two discoveries, Socialism became a Science.’ (Collected Works of Marx and Engels, Vol. 3, pp. 545,461,546).  These facts demonstrate to us that to establish the Marxist ideal of Communism, the key is to study and master the materialist conception of history and the theory of capitalist production.

Shortly after the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (2012), General Secretary Xi Jinping, in a profound and precise Study Seminar Speech, advised the New Central Committee Members, and Alternate Members that they should ‘uphold the noble ideals of Communism’, through the correct application of historical materialism, and the law of capitalism production. First, it is important to fully understand and master the subject of the materialist concept of history. General Secretary Xi Jinping pointed out:

‘Some comrades think that Communism is unobtainable, and even that it is a matter of ‘faith’ in something that cannot be seen, because their understanding is incomplete. This is a false argument that mistakes the theory of Communist historical materialism with that of historical idealism.  World history is the unfolding of historical materialism, and not that of historical idealism.  This false attitude towards Communism occurs because of a poor and weak understanding of historical materialism, and a sinking into wavering idealism that lacks the scientific understanding to correctly interpret and explain history.’

(Selected Important Documents from the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (2012), p. 116)

Historical materialism is a ‘fundamental’ and key aspect of the theory of Scientific Socialism.

Before the emergence of Marxism, due to historical conditions involving the limitations associated with the exploiting class prejudices, theories within the field of the study of social history had been dominated by idealism.  The power of this idea can be observed influencing even an outstanding materialist in the field of social history, such as Feuerbach, who eventually fell into idealism.  With the development of the machine, there simultaneously emerged on the stage of history, the large-scale industrial proletariat, as an independent political force.  It is exactly the development of this proletariat that inspired the revolutionary thinker Karl Marx to formulate his theory, which included a summation of the outstanding achievements of human civilization, as interpreted through the rubric of historical materialism.  Therefore, the concept of historical materialism ‘Changed the entire manner in which world history was interpreted’, so that ‘For the first time in human existence, the interpretation of history was premised upon its true foundation.’  (Collected Works of Marx and Engels, Vol. 3, p. 457, 459).  Marx convincingly proved that people must first eat, drink, have shelter and clothing, and that first there must be work before there can be a fight for domination, or the pursuance of politics, religion and philosophy.  Therefore, the mode of production of material life (which is defined by its conditions), constitutes the social, developmental process of life.  It is not the consciousness of women and men that determines their existence, but their social existence that determines their social consciousness. The antagonistic (dialectical) forces that exist between the productive forces and relations of production, together with the economic base and superstructure, promote social development and social forms of replacement.  The development of social forms is a process of unfolding natural history, which is intrinsically governed by this general rule. Since Marx formulated this clear and objective scientific theory of social development as a historical necessity, Communism could no longer be viewed as a fantasy, or a utopic matter of wishful thinking.  In fact, historical materialism marks a radical shift in the study of the history of world thought.  This is a matter that all Party Members must study and thoroughly understand.  Through the ‘turning about’ of understanding (in the mind), the entire reality of the world (and its functionality) becomes clear.  Those who think that Communism is unattainable, or a matter of ‘faith’ are mistaken, because they are interpreting Communism from the false perspective of historical idealism, and not from the correct (scientific) perspective of historical materialism.  The foundation of Communism (through which it will be attained) is that of historical materialism.

The two fundamental contradictions within capitalist society will ensure a) its collapse and b) the inevitable victory of Socialism.  General Secretary Xi Jinping said:

‘The observable and verifiable facts have repeatedly confirmed to us, that Marx and Engels’ analysis of the fundamental contradictions of capitalist society, are not obsolete.  Therefore, the study of historical materialism demonstrates that the collapse of capitalism will eventually happen, and that the victory of Socialism is inevitable.  This theory is not outdated for the study of the historical development of society.  The general trend is that of reversal (away from the dominance of capital), but the road to the eventual demise of capitalism is very difficult and arduous at times, meaning that the final victory of Socialism requires a very long historical process.’

(Selected Important Documents from the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (2012), p. 117)

This statement clearly presents the inevitable development (toward Socialism) as being driven by basic contradiction, and demonstrates how Marx revealed the underlying functionality of capitalist society, whilst pointing out the inevitability of the realisation of the Communist ideal in the long-term.

Prior to Marx, economists and sociologists were steeped in idealistic thinking, and defined ‘normal society’ from the perspective of pure fantasy.  Marx abandoned this fictitious ‘generalised notion of society’, and instead dedicated himself to the study of the material conditions of existential capitalist society.  In his ‘Das Kapital’ (Preface to the first edition – Volume 1) he states: ‘I want to study in this book, the capitalist mode of production, the relations of production, relations of exchange, and how these forces interact and transform one another.’  ‘The ultimate goal of this book is to reveal the economic law of motion within modern society.’  (Collected Works of Marx and Engels, Vol. 5, p. 8, 10) Marx devoted his entire life to the study capitalist, a developmental process that was the basis for his writing of ‘Das Kapital’.  He studied a literal mountain of material evidence, and analysed in considerable detail, the functionality of the law of capitalism.  As Lenin pointed out, Marx reveals the development of capitalism in the law, his analysis ‘Is limited to production relations between members of society’, and ‘Marx did not use any of these relations of production factors, for anything other than to illustrate the problem.’ (Collected Works of Lenin topic · On dialectical and historical materialism, page 162).  With this study, Marx thoroughly clarified the relationship between capital and labour, and reveals the fundamental contradiction that exists within capitalism.  Engels pointed out that the forces of production are generally active within society, but that the social products are owned solely by the individual capitalists.  Socialized production and capitalist possession are incompatible, therefore, ‘This is the generation of all the contradictions within modern society. This fundamental contradiction within modern society is the basis of all transformative movement.’ (Collected Works of Marx and Engels, Vol. 3, p. 565).  This explains the basic contradiction of all conflicts within capitalist society.  It is this unstable nature of capitalism which determines its inevitable demise, and the equally inevitable victory of Socialism.  Marx clarified the relationship between capitalists and wage-labourers, as being the main mode of capitalist production, which is succinctly expressed as the exploitative (and antagonistic) relationship between ‘capital’ and ‘labour’.  This means that regardless of how subjectively unique an individual appears to be, or what position within society they occupy, he or she possesses a mind (and body) very much conditioned by the relations of production as they manifest as ‘society’ and ‘social relations’.  It is never a matter of isolated individuals confronting the all-embracing capitalist state, but is rather the confrontation (or ‘antagonisms’) that exist between the social relations within which an individual exists.  Therefore, the inherent contradictions that exist within the exploitative system that is capitalism, possess the transformative power to bring capitalism to an end, and transition productive forces (and social relations) into the state of Socialism.  Thus, in the final demise of capitalism, Socialism will eventually triumph.  This process is not determined by what an individual subjectively decides or wills, but is the direct consequence of the conflict of productive forces and the production of conflicting social relations.  The class antagonisms that exist between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, inevitably lead to confrontation and struggle.  This trend of confrontation and struggle is an observable law of social development within a capitalist society.

The long-term success of the attainment of Communism is never a matter of idealistic or ‘blind’ faith.  Such an attitude demonstrates a complete lack of understanding of the (rational) mechanisms of Scientific Socialism.  Therefore, General Secretary Xi Jinping stressed that ‘The demise of capitalism is inevitable, just as the victory of socialism is inevitable’, while also noting that ‘This must be the product of a very long historical process.’  He emphasised:

‘We must profoundly study the ability of capitalist societies to self-regulate, and rationally engage the Western, developed countries, to understand the objective advantage that the capitalist system produced for a long time, in economic, scientific, technological, and military development.  We must earnestly prepare for two kinds of social systems operating over the long-term, clearly defining the conditions that suggest cooperation, and the conditions that suggest struggle, in all their various aspects.’

(Selected Important Documents from the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (2012), p. 117)

The final victory of Socialism ‘Must be a very long historical process’, is, in itself, the objective law of social development in operation.  Marx states in his ‘(Abstracted) Preface of A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy’ that ‘No social order ever perishes before all the productive forces for which there is room in it have developed; and new, higher relations of production never appear before the material conditions of their existence have matured in the womb of the old society itself.’ (Collected Works of Marx and Engels, Vol. 2, 592).  After the development of the monopoly stage of capitalism, the imperialist era of economic and political development ushered in a period of the imbalance (between economic and political forces), creating the conditions for the first socialist revolutions to break-out.  As Czarist Russia was a weak link in the chain of imperialist countries, it was the first place to successfully achieve a Socialist Revolution, to be later followed by semi feudal and semi colonial countries such as China.  This fact indicates the special circumstances prevalent in these countries which formed the material conditions necessary for Socialism.  On the other hand, capitalism still occupies the dominant position in the contemporary world, particularly after the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the Eastern Bloc countries, which created drastic change.  Economic globalization and the revolution in information technology (as well as other high-tech revolutions) has promoted the development of the productive forces contained within capitalist society.  This has meant that the basic contradictions within capitalist society, to a certain extent, have eased, demonstrating that capitalism can still productively accommodate change, and that its productive forces have not yet been brought fully into play.  Therefore, after quite a long time, the primary stage of socialism must also be more productive to match the development of capitalist countries, in a long-term policy of cooperation and struggle. We must have a deep understanding and be well prepared.  Marx continues in his ‘(Abstracted) Preface of A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy’: ‘The bourgeois relations of production are the last antagonistic form of the social process of production — antagonistic not in the sense of individual antagonisms, but of one arising from the social conditions of life of the individuals; at the same time the productive forces developing in the womb of bourgeois society create the material conditions for the solution of that antagonism. This social formation brings, therefore, the prehistory of society to a close.’  (Collected Works of Marx and Engels, Vol. 2, 592).  This explains how the capitalist means of production, has within it, the seeds of its own demise.  And the inevitable demise of capitalism, the inevitable victory of socialism both “inevitable” unified together, this unity is the development of the objective laws of social performance.  The conditions that will inevitably develop Socialism are directly found within the contradictions that define capitalism – so that the two states are inherently linked – with capitalism forming the former (earlier) stage, and Socialism the later (developed) stage.

The two issues are these; in the long-term, capitalism will wither away due to its own fundamental contradictions, and this withering away of capitalism is due to its contradictions that are observable here and now.  After the international financial crisis in 2008, ‘Das Kapital’ became a bestseller in the Western developed countries, as Marx’s critique of capitalism again attracted worldwide attention.  This is because people have re-engaged the writings of Marx to seek answers to contemporary social issues.  This fact once again proves that Marx’s analysis of the basic contradictions of capitalist society, is not obsolete.  We must recognize that the ideal of communism is both long-term and inevitable.  We must stay united, with a strong strategic focus upon assisting the creation of the conditions that lead to Communism.

2) Unify the Pursuance of Socialism (with Chinese Characteristics), with the Building of Communism

Be vigilant against the so-called ‘Communism is an illusory’ theory.  This false idealism has the potential to erode the progressive thought of Party Members and Cadres, who must instead adhere to correct Communist theory, practice, ideals and material reality.  It must be understood in the clearest terms, that the pursuance of Socialism (with Chinese characteristics), is the highest ideal of unity at this stage, which requires an in-depth understanding of the relationship between Communism and Socialism, so that the ideal of Communism can be eventually achieved.

a) Persist in the correct study of Communist theory and practice, so that the theory and the reality are forever unified. The Constitution of Communist Party of China stipulates that the Probationary Party Member must face the Red Party Flag, and take certain oaths, before being admitted to the Party. The Party Constitution oath states: ‘The struggle to establish Communism is a lifelong endeavour’.  This is why it is inappropriate for Party Members and Cadres to ‘laugh and entertain the false idea that ‘Communism is an illusion’, or that Marxist theory is ineffective, or not dependent on the achieving of Communism.’  Some Party Members and Cadres do not clearly understand the epistemological roots of this fallacy, and therefore confuse the Marxist theory of the acquisition of Communism, making all kinds of errors and mistakes in their assessment and analysis.  Marx and Engels founded Scientific Communism, and from the base-up, emphasised the unity of theory and practice.  In their mature work on historical materialism, entitled ‘The German Ideology’, they criticize Young Hegelians for using ‘shocking words’, but not taking any decisive action in the physical world – the Young Hegelians attacked the outer, superficial expressions of the time, but did not get to the root of the systemic problem.  The historical idealism practised by the Young Hegelians was opposite to the historical materialism advocated by Marx and Engels, who stated: ‘The practice of historical materialism is the correct Communist path that questions all underlying causes and effects extant in the physical world, as a means to make revolution, and change things permanently.’   They also pointed out that: ‘We are called Communists because we want to completely eliminate the extant conditions prevalent in the physical world.’  (Collected Works of Marx and Engels, Vol. 1, p. 527-539).  Obviously, Communism is not only a scientific ideology, but is also an instruction for social practice that carefully guides the development of society toward Communism.  Since the birth of Marxism, there has been a Communist movement that continues to substantially move forward in both its practice and development.  As noted during the 12th National Congress of the Communist Party of China: ‘The spread of Communist ideology has the primary goal of building and achieving Communism in the material world.  This process began with the establishment of the Communist Party of China, and continued through the New Democratic Revolution.  Now this movement in our country is emerging out of the stage of Socialism, into the primary stage of Communism.’  Therefore, the thought and practice of Communism already exists in our everyday experience of life, and it is true to say that Scientific Communism has been subjected to more than one hundred years of practical testing.

There are some people who do not understand the theory of Communism, and who have only an incorrect idealistic interpretation of it.  As they cannot see their mistaken ‘ideal’ manifesting in the material conditions of society, they then think ‘Communism’ is not real.  This is tantamount to denying the validity of all social theory and social function.  Idealist imaginations are not scientific because they are not based upon material research.  Scientific Socialism is a science simply because it is a set of observations premised upon a careful empirical research of society (and its function) as it exists now, as it existed in the past, and as it will exist in the future.  Science is not imagination or speculation, and it is not a ‘faith’ in something non-existent, nor is it premised upon an irrational ‘belief system’ for its efficacy. Individuals who remain unaware of how society ‘evolves’, do not understand the subtle changes that occur from one epoch to another, or even from one generation to another. This is why some ignorant people cannot understand or see the reality of Scientific Communism.  They do not understand that today’s theoretical understanding can become tomorrow’s social reality. This is why it is said that today’s social reality is premised upon the function of theory that might not be apparent in its ‘immediate’ manifestation.  As this is not a matter of belief in the operation of metaphysics within material society, Scientific Communism cannot be said to be ‘non-existent’ (like a god construct), but is entirely visible to individuals living within progressive societies, who have been educated and trained to understand the theories associated with Communism and its development within society.  Ignorance of this theory does not invalidate the theory, or prove that it is not valid.  Ignorance of the efficacy of the Communist theory simply means that misunderstanding or a lack of knowledge exists in the mind of the person who does not yet comprehend.  This is exactly the same situation regarding any subject whereby an individual has a lack of knowledge.  A bias against Communist theory is simply a matter of a lack of appropriate education, nothing more. However, such a biased attitude is often used by the supporters of capitalism as a means to advocate ‘greed’ over the scientific understanding of the Communist theory (outside of China).  One such supporter once declared the ‘end of history’ following the collapse of the USSR.  This was a mistaken (and foolish) ideological attack upon the Marxist theory of historical materialism, which continues to function regardless of any and all social change.

The difference between Scientific Communism and utopic Communist theories, lies not in a ‘seen’ or ‘unseen’ theoretical basis, but rather in whether that theory has been derived from the concrete fact of material existence, or simply from religious imagination.  Communist theory has an objective basis, which is the rational and logical analysis of the material reality of existence within a capitalist society. Lenin said: ‘Marx treated the question of communism in the same way as a naturalist would treat the question of the development of, say, a new biological variety, once he knew that it had originated in such and such a way and was changing in such and such a definite direction.’ (Collected Works of Lenin topic · Marxism’, p. 255-256).  According to Marx, Communism is an inevitable historical development out of capitalism, driven by social forces that function within society.  These basic contradictions not only mean the eventual end of capitalism, but also that capitalism plays a vital role in the establishment of Communism. However, Marx did not make a dogma about what exactly a Communist society would look like, as he had no intention of establishing a prediction about the future. Instead, Marx pointed out certain important characteristics and trends, and avoided speculative fantasy.  In 1881, the Dutch Social Democrats wrote to Marx to ask: ‘If you came to power, in order to ensure the victory of Socialism, what should be the first legislative measures with regard to the correct economic and political direction?’ Marx replied with a stern letter, stating that the question itself was irrelevant because it was premised upon a fantasy.  Marx said: ‘The only answer to this question should be critical of the question itself.’ Because, (he continued) ‘No equation can be solved unless the elements of its solution are involved in its terms.’ (Collected Works of Marx and Engels, Vol. 10, p. 458).  Precisely because of that strict scientific spirit, the Marxist Communists did not fall into fantasy, but advanced step by step, toward the realisation (and practical application) of the Scientific Communist theory.  Prior to the establishment of New China in 1949, no one could envisage the democratic dictatorship of the working people – and yet such an achievement historically unfolded.  Again, no one foresaw the moderate economic success of China in the late 20th century – and yet it historically happened.  The Chinese people must continue this struggle to establish Communism and never give-up on this most important of transformative tasks.  This onward struggles requires the continued building of a moderately prosperous society, as well as a truly democratic, civilized, and harmonious modern Socialist country.  This is how to achieve a great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.  We must all work toward the Communist-inspired ‘China Dream’.  Although this is still just a beautiful ambition, as a nation, the Chinese people are already closer to its realization than at any other time in Chinese history. The goal will be established through the guidance of Marxism – step by step – from the theory into reality.  This is the most powerful proof of the practice of hundreds of millions of Chinese people working together, which will make the achievement of Communism inevitable.

b) Adhere to the theory of the establishment of Communism, which will be achieved through the development of Socialism (with Chinese characteristics).

Two misconceived questions that arise from those who think ‘Communism is an illusion’: 1) ‘Why hasn’t the Communist government confiscated all private property?’, and 2) ‘Why are there Communists in China who are co-owners of private businesses?’ The purpose of these types of misconstrued views, are to undermine the development of Socialism with Chinese characteristics.  This shows a thorough misunderstanding of the theory of Scientific Communism and its application to the development of a ‘Socialist’ society.  Although it is true that some people hold these views because of a lack of genuine understanding, it is equally true that some people deliberately propagate such views to directly attack and do harm to the Chinese Socialist State.  The Marxist theory of radical transformation, is not only one of permanent revolution, but also the continued revolutionary development of a unified society. The achievement of Communism is the highest stage of development pursued by Scientific Communists, which unfolds during different and specific phases of history, and that represent the interests of the overwhelming majority of the people in their struggle.  Therefore, the Programme of the Communist Party of China, carefully recognises each historical stage, and ensures the unity of the people by representing their best developmental interests as a collective.  Mao Zedong (毛泽东) devised the New China Democratic Revolution theory, which placed the revolution in a correct context for Chinese Communists.  This understanding eradicated the ‘left-deviation’ confusion that existed between ‘Democratic Revolution’ and ‘Socialist Revolution’, and specifically pointed out that China’s revolutionary process must be divided into the ‘New China Democratic Revolution’ and the ‘Socialist Revolution’ developmental stages.  This theory proposes a minimum programme and the maximum programme, as a two-part organic structure of guiding principles, designed to ensure the success of the Chinese Revolution. Since beginning in our country to construct Socialism comprehensively overtime, there has necessarily been a thorough analysis of mistakes made, such as the early emphasis upon ‘excessive and inappropriate common ownership’, and other ‘left deviation’ errors.  These mistakes and setbacks have educated us, and caused us to become mature.  The Chinese Communist Party has passed through many stages of difficult exploration, and through careful analysis of prevailing conditions, has clearly recognized that China is in the initial stages of Socialist development. This initial stage of Socialist development directly represents the fundamental realities that currently exist within the country.  Socialism with Chinese characteristics, is the implementation of the minimum programme for building Socialism within China.  It recognises the unique historical and socio-economic conditions that are relevant for the Chinese people here and now, and is a matter of material fact, and not idealistic speculation.

General Secretary Xi Jinping stated that the ultimate realization of the great objective of Communism, must be based on the successful achievement of the Communist Party’s specific objectives at this stage:

‘Socialism with Chinese characteristics is the unification of the Party’s maximum programme and the minimum programme.  The minimum programme of building Socialism with Chinese characteristics, has the objectives of building a modern Socialist country that is prosperous, democratic, civilized and harmonious. The highest ideal of achieving Communism will evolve from the correct establishment at this present time, of Socialism with Chinese characteristics’

(Selected Important Documents from the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (2012), p. 116)

The initial stage of Socialism in China, exists to build the conditions through which Communism can be realised overtime.  Therefore, the initial stage of Socialism in China is an important step toward building Communism that cannot be ignored or negated – as it is a necessary historical stage.   Deng Xiaoping (邓小平) pointed out the relationship between the advanced Communist stage and this initial stage of Socialism in China.  He said that Socialism itself is the primary stage of Communism, and that China – existing as it does within the initial stage of Socialism – is economically underdeveloped.  Every achievement must be planned for, from reality as it exists here and now. This is how careful planning is formulated by taking into account the prevailing conditions.  During the Democratic Revolution, the Chinese Communist Party stated that the objective was to achieve a successful revolution, and build the conditions for the development of Socialism.  Therefore, it was clarified that Communist theory had two separate and distinct objectives to be pursued from the Democratic Revolutionary base; 1) the immediate building of Socialism, and 2) the future realisation of Communism.  When planning for the future, neither of these two stages can be ignored, and each must be clearly achieved.

Despite all of modern China’s achievements, it is important not to lose sight of the prevailing socio-economic conditions.  This forms the material reality that is the basis of Socialist and Communist thinking.  With regards to the achievement of Socialism, China is only in the ‘initial’ stage of its acquisition.  Do not lose sight of the eventual goal of the establishment of Communism, or the essential spirit of the Revolution will be lost.  China will establish Socialism and then Communism once the correct conditions have been produced by the Chinese people through their labour. The Chinese Communist Party is building Socialism with Chinese characteristics because this is exactly what the prevailing national (material) conditions demand at this present time.  This is why General Secretary Xi Jinping said:

‘We must firmly follow the path of building Socialism with Chinese characteristics with conviction, whilst keeping the mind focused on the eventual attainment of Communism.  The Chinese Communist Party will pursue this path with effort and tenacity, so that the initial stage of Socialism, (through the initiation of the minimum programme), will be successfully completed.’

(Selected Important Documents from the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (2012), p. 116)

Therefore, we persist in the initial stage of Socialism with the public ownership system for the main part, supplemented by a number of other ownership systems, all premised upon a basic communal, developmental, economic system.  Therefore, the Party strives to build the initial stage of Socialism, whilst working conscientiously toward Communism.  Those who think that property must be confiscated to achieve the future realisation of Communism, do not understand the prevailing socio-economic situation in China, or the theory of Marxism (and Marxist-Leninism).  We must, therefore, as a nation, remain vigilant against the false propaganda that deliberately misrepresents the Chinese people, the Chinese Communist Party, Chinese Communism, and Socialism with Chinese characteristics.

(Author: Ministry of Education and Social Sciences & Formerly Director of the Development Research Centre)

©opyright: Adrian Chan-Wyles (ShiDaDao) 2016.

Original Chinese Language Source Text:


来源:《红旗文稿》2015/19  作者:田心铭





为什么只有学好马克思主义才能坚定共产主义理想呢?因为共产主义理想是建立在马克思主义的理论基础之上的。马克思主义是以科学社会主义(也可称为科学共产主义)为核心的思想体系。在马克思主义产生之前,由于无产阶级解放的物质条件还没有具备,社会主义和共产主义只能是空想。恩格斯在《共产党宣言》1890年德文版序言中说,当马克思和他在1847年写《共产党宣言》的时候,工人运动中的共产主义还是一种“只是出于本能的、往往有些粗陋的共产主义”,“但它已经强大到足以形成两种空想的共产主义体系:在法国有卡贝的‘伊加利亚’共产主义,在德国有魏特林的共产主义。” (《马克思恩格斯文集》第2卷,第21页)这时工人运动还没有科学理论来指导。马克思和恩格斯创立了新的科学世界观,使社会主义和共产主义从空想变成了科学,同时也创立了世界上第一个马克思主义的工人政党,即共产主义者同盟。《共产党宣言》就是受这个同盟的代表大会委托为它起草的纲领。《共产党宣言》的发表,既是马克思主义问世的标志,同时又是共产党诞生的标志。这一事实表明,共产党人的共产主义理想从一开始就建立在科学理论的基础之上,同空想的社会主义和共产主义划清了界限。












1.坚持理论和实践、理想和现实的统一。中国共产党章程规定,预备党员必须面向党旗进行入党宣誓。党章规定的誓词包括“为共产主义奋斗终身”。某些宣扬“共产主义虚无缥缈”的人嘲笑说:“没有见过共产主义,愣是要为此奋斗终身!” 还有人说,马克思主义把实践当作检验真理的唯一标准,而共产主义没有经过实践检验。在这些观点背后,隐藏着一种把理论和实践、理想和现实割裂开来去看共产主义的思维方法。这种思维方法,也是有些党员干部不能认清“共产主义虚无缥缈”论的谬误的一个认识论根源。




  1. 坚持共产主义远大理想和中国特色社会主义共同理想的统一。某些宣扬“共产主义虚无缥缈”论的人质问:“假如你们真的相信共产主义,为什么不把财产都充公呢?”还有人说:“听说又要搞共产主义了,是不是要共私营企业主的产啊?”散布这样的论调,如果不是无知,就是居心叵测:或者是企图用“激将法”诱导超越阶段的错误,或者是把对共产主义思想的宣传曲解为对私营经济方针政策的改变,蛊惑人心,都是要危害中国特色社会主义事业。





Communist Party of Nepal (Maosim)

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Original Chinese Language Article By:

(Translated by Adrian Chan-Wyles PhD)

Their Red Flag is that of Communism!  Many different Communist factions have joined to form the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist).  Since the dissolution of the Monarchy, the Communist Party has become a dominant force in the governance of Nepal by popular demand.  This Maoist Movement – which has fought the Nepalese State for freedom – and that has ruled Nepal in the past (through democratic vote) continues to be very popular amongst the masses, and advocates the development of the Nepalese people through education and the introduction of modern technology and the internet.  Maoism is viewed as the best method for the Nepalese people to free themselves from tyranny and oppression, through the correct application and interpretation of dialectical and historical materialism.



©opyright: Adrian Chan-Wyles (ShiDaDao) 2016.

Original Chinese Language Source Text:



这就是尼泊尔毛 主义 者的斗争策略和目标



在岩石的共产主义登记在 尼泊尔




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.

Eurocentricism in the British Left


The above Excellent letter appeared in the New Worker newspaper of the New Communist Party of Britain No. 1777, dated 30.5.14, Page 8.  My letter of reply (see below) was published in the New Worker, No. 1778, dated 6.6.14, on Pages 8-9:

Dear Comrades of the NCPB

I write with appreciation for the letter written by Comrade Kumar Sarkar which appeared in the New Worker dated the 30.5.14. This important letter documents the important historical conditions that existed in India during the 18th and 19th century at the development and height of the British imperialist presence. Imperialism, is of course, by default, racist – but comrade Sarkar makes the valid point of ‘Eurocentricism’ within the Communist Party, and how this prevented the full support of the revolutionary forces in India generated through the presence of British capitalism, and how the bourgeois simply forged links with Brahmanic religion. This inevitably has led to the election victory of the racist (and capitalist) BJP.

This letter further demonstrates the actual application of Marxist dialectics and is to be applauded. It sometimes can be, unfortunately, a modern habit of the ‘left’ to decide things ideologically without conveying the method used to arrive at that decision. All individuals can assess the history of their own lives, and the history of the country they live, through the correct application of the analysis of historical materialism. This must not be confused with ‘gross materialism’ which has no connection with the theory of Marx and Engels. Those on the left must learn to think again for themselves as part of the leftwing cause, and not just accept what they are told by ideologues who believe ‘one size fits alls’.

Marx and Engels were born in Europe, but the system of analysis that they developed transcended their own ethnocentric predicament, making the Marxist conception of history and dialectical analysis truly universal. Professor Yang Geng of mainland China, comments in his 2010 book entitled ‘Defense for Marx’, that Marx, through his genius, saw through his own historical conditioning, simultaneously completing, and transcending the entire philosophical project of the West. No individual can intellectually go beyond Marx, because his thinking transcends all contrived systems of thought, which now are understood to exist in a pre-Marxist state of incompletion. The world is not just Europe, and all comrades should strive to forge a truly internationalist paradigm that does not fall into the trap of ethnocentric bias.



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