Orthodox Outlet for Dogmatic Enquiries Events and Society


Marxist practice and Christian Love

V. Bakouros

Christian Love – Part 6

For Marx, the support shown towards the Working Class was not an act of philanthropy or of social justice, only of social necessity. This is why it doesn’t have a moral character, but merely a mechanistic one.

This article is the sixth and last part of the extract from an article by the University teacher V. Bakouros that was published in the magazine “TREETO MAHTI” (December 2004 edition No.128, pages 22-26, with the general title “Socialistic Social Solidarity and Christian Love”).

This article is being re-published, by kind courtesy of the magazine, and will be completed in a series of segmented articles.

It may be widely known, that K. Marx and his descendants wittingly fought against not only organized religion, but religiosity as well, considering them to be displays or indications of historical decadence. They actually theorized that religion was an ideology for the manipulation of the people to the callings of the powers that be. The famous expression “Religion is the opium of the people” that is attributed to Marx but was in fact coined by the atheist theologian V. Bauer, successfully portrays the Marxist perception that we just outlined; however, it doesn’t adequately explain the aggressive policy of Marxist dialectics towards the phenomenon of religion.

To Marx, religion is an ideology; in fact, it is a reactionary-anachronistic ideology. This error in methodology that the Marxist School (Marx, Engels, etc.) pursued is quite possibly attributed to the protestant influences that K. Marx absorbed from the German society and the historical experiences of the theocratic structure –especially of Austria-Hungary- that he had studied in depth.

The term “ideology” in Marxist terminology is used in a derogatory sense, and it implies “a sum of ideas that do not reflect reality, and are used to conceal the historical truth”. According to Marx, ideology as a product of conscience is rescinded by the evolution of history, which is something inevitable, given that it is executed by natural laws. Thus, the natural evolution of society abolishes religion, which –amongst its other ideologies- is the most persistent, because it is the most traditional and is based on the ignorance and the weaknesses of the populus. To the Marxist perception of life, faith (and moreso the Christian faith) is an indication of defeat, an inability to confront life’s difficulties with one’s own means, a resorting to a divine super-ego that covers the shortages of the personal ego. A Marxist has no need of Christian love, because he is assured that the progress of history is governed by positive laws.

The fact that Marxism itself ended up an ideology also, was something that Marx didn’t live to see ( and would have naturally condemned ), because his theory is essentially an interpretation of a “development” that would be realized as a “fact”, regardless of the personal convictions of people, since a person’s conscience is totally subject to historical-natural laws.  That is why it is of no significance if workers are benefited and the rich (for example) are killed; because, in both cases, they are not providing a service to justice, but to the evolution of history. Both these practices are equally laudable, when, through them, the social benefit is promoted – as of course interpreted by the analytical Marxist model.  Personal, moral responsibility is non-existent, since man is obeying an irrefutable law. His obligation is to promote it sooner.

Marx is especially condemnatory towards Christianity, because opposite Islam, it overthrows (or tries to overthrow) in vain according to Marx, the historical course using Christ as a model-figure. Love, as a motive for social intervention, is not only futile for Marx; it is actually harmful. To begin with, it makes the person addicted to intervening in the social flow of affairs, independent of historical laws; moreso, however, because it becomes manifest amongst the unfortunate, who are judged by moral criteria as being unfortunate, and thus contradicting the social Darwinism that Marxism embraces, i.e., in the process whereby the fittest prevails, on the basis of the natural laws that govern the function of society.  This is also the reason that K. Marx was totally opposed to the Hellenic Revolution of 1821.

For Marx, the support shown towards the Working Class was not an act of philanthropy or of social justice, only of social necessity. This is why it doesn’t have a moral character, but merely a mechanistic one. Thus, the cure for poverty is not sought because the socialist world theory foresees mercy, but because poverty as a phenomenon hinders the smooth historical and cultural progress of society.  It is therefore not the moral sense of justice, but necessity that imposes the specific “philanthropic” provisions in the social system that Marxism evangelizes.

According to Marx, the interpretation of historical necessity is dependent on party members, whose gnomon is –naturally- his own theory.  We shouldn’t therefore be surprised, that the most heinous communist leader, Joseph Stalin, was simultaneously the friendliest of all towards the Church. This doesn’t mean he was a believer, (despite the fact that this education was ecclesiastic, as he had graduated from the ecclesiastic college of Tiflis).  When World War II coincided with his rule, the rallying together of the Russian people in order to confront the Nazi onslaught imposed this stance of friendliness, since it was the only way to reinforce the defences of the land of the Soviets.  This same opportunist interpretation imposed on the Communist Revolutionaries during the Civil War in Greece a respect towards the popular religious faith, in order to whet the misunderstanding between the social message of equality in Christian love, and the Marxist practice of a mechanistic, class-less society.


This was the last excerpt taken from the magazine “TREETO MAHTI”, December 2004 edition No. 128, pages 22-26.  Article written by V. Bakouros, with the general title “Socialistic Social Solidarity and Christian Love”.


Translation by A. N.

Greek Text

Article published in English on: 19-10-2005.

Last update: 19-10-2005.