St Lenin

In his latest article, the Rev. Dr. Peter Mullen PhD. illustrates the destructive nature of communism. 

Coming soon to Britain: a communist government under Jeremy Corbyn.

But don’t worry. It’s just fine. Communism should be admired and venerated and we have this on no less an authority than that of the great devotee of Eastern Orthodox Christianity, President Vladimir Putin - who has likened communism to Christianity and Vladimir Lenin’s mausoleum in Moscow’s Red Square to the veneration of the relics of saints. In an interview for the documentary Valaam he said:

Maybe I’ll say something that someone might dislike, but that’s the way I see it. First of all, faith has always accompanied us, becoming stronger every time our country, our people, have been through hard times.

“There were those years of militant atheism when priests were eradicated, churches destroyed, but at the same time a new religion was being created. Communist ideology is very similar to Christianity, in fact: freedom, equality, brotherhood, justice – everything is laid out in the Holy Scripture, it’s all there. And the code of the builder of communism? This is sublimation, it’s just such a primitive excerpt from the Bible, nothing new was invented.

Putin went on to say that Lenin should be venerated as the Christian saints and martyrs are venerated:

“Look, Lenin was put in a mausoleum. How is this different from the relics of saints for Orthodox Christians and just for Christians? When they say that there’s no such tradition in Christianity, well, how come, go to Athos and take a look, there are relics of the saints there, and we have holy relics here.

Well, we know that Putin puts Lenin on a pedestal, but we should also consider what has been said and written about him by historians, biographers and other contemporaries.

According to his biographer James D. White, Lenin treated the writings of Marx and Engels as “holy writ and religious dogma which should not be questioned but believed in.” The historian Volkogonov was in no doubt that Lenin accepted Marxism as “absolute truth” to which he adhered like “a religious fanatic.” Bertrand Russell, who visited the USSR in the 1920s said that Lenin exhibited “unwavering faith – religious faith - in the Marxian gospel.” Another biographer, Christopher Read, did not doubt that Lenin was, “a secular equivalent of theocratic leaders who derive their legitimacy from the perceived truth of their doctrines, not from popular mandates.” He added: “Lenin was a strict atheist and a strong critic of religion who, believing that socialism was inherently atheistic, considered Christian socialism a contradiction in terms.”

Other contemporary reflections on the character of the man and his works describe Lenin as “moody and volatile” and “a thoroughgoing misanthrope.” According to several biographers, Lenin was intolerant of opposition and he often dismissed outright opinions that differed from his own. He was, “Venomous in his critique of others, exhibiting a propensity for mockery, ridicule, and ad hominem attacks on those who disagreed with him. He ignored facts that did not suit his argument, abhorred compromise and very rarely admitted his own errors. He refused to change his opinions, until he rejected them completely, after which he would treat the new view as if it was just as unchangeable.” He “endorsed political violence and exhibited no remorse for those killed for the revolutionary cause.” His “sole criterion of morality was simple: does a certain action advance or hinder the cause of the Revolution?

The Russian-born British historian and commentator Alexander Boot offers a succinct summary of Lenin’s contribution to human well-being: “About a fourth of the roughly 60 million Russians murdered by the Leninists perished on Lenin’s watch (1917-1924). The victims included some 40,000 priests killed in all sorts of imaginative ways, whose description needn’t detain us here. Many of their parishioners shared the same gruesome fate – just because they believed in God. Their churches were desecrated, plundered of liturgical valuables and most of them destroyed – all on Lenin’s direct orders.”

But I am being unfair. I will correct this discrepancy and let Lenin speak for himself:

You cannot do anything without rousing the masses to action. A plenary meeting of the Soviet must be called to decide on mass searches in Petrograd and the goods stations. To carry out these searches, each factory and company must form contingents, not on a voluntary basis: it must be the duty of everyone to take part in these searches under the threat of being deprived of his bread card. We can't expect to get anywhere unless we resort to terrorism: speculators must be shot on the spot. Moreover, bandits must be dealt with just as resolutely: they must be shot on the spot.

“The best way to destroy capitalism is to debauch the currency.

“Liberty is precious – so very precious that it must be carefully rationed.

“The way to crush the bourgeoisie is between the two millstones of taxation and inflation.

“He who talks about freedom of the press halts our headlong course towards socialism.

“Russians are too kind: they lack the ability to apply determined methods of revolutionary terror

We need the real nationwide terror which reinvigorates the country and through which the Great French Revolution achieved glory.”

How acutely perceptive it is therefore of Vladimir Putin to acknowledge Lenin’s saintliness and to call for the veneration of his relics. Clearly, Lenin belongs on the Calendar with St Francis, St Teresa, St Benedict, St Paul and St John; with St Michael the archangel and with Jesus Christ himself.

All views expressed in contributions by named authors are their own and may not reflect the views of The Freedom Association.

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  • commented 2018-01-23 09:51:09 +0000
    From Peter Mullen:

    John continues to make a very fair point against Christianity. I have already agreed that the church sometimes behaved very badly in its treatment of heretics. I would only add by way of explanation that it did so because we are speaking of a time when intelligent men all over Europe believed – and supported their belief by philosophical reasoning – that what one believed was important for one’s life on earth and in eternity

    In other words it was an age in which not all meaning had been drained from the church’s theological profession – as of course it has so drained away today, by the weakness of church leaders and their willingness to accept the new secular dogmas: eg Archbishop Rowan Williams, “The church has a lot of catching up to do with secular mores.”

    Then it ceases to be the church and becomes just another part of the secular elite’s hegemonic culture of entitlement

    But I maintain it was the church’s part in the creation of our great institutions and its part in forming the polity of medieval and Reformation Europe which provided for us a decent set of political liberties

    No prevailing orthodoxy is faultless. Well, if we’re looking for the kind and tolerant results of Enlightenment atheism, let’s start with the French Revolution and the Reign of Terror when Madame Guillotine toured France and people were slaughtered wholesale. (By the way, the Guillotine was administered by “The Committee for Public Safety” I hereby claim this as the first example ever of political correctness!. Or take a look at the great intolerance shown by our politically-correct secular regime today. Try opposing diversity, equality, multiculturalism and homo-marriage and see where it gets you!

    Modern “tolerant” secularists will tolerate only those who agree with them.

    Thank you once again for your kind comments.

    Peter
  • commented 2018-01-22 20:13:24 +0000
    Peter Mullen is gracious, but has his own agenda, of course.
    A “tit for tat” dialogue is to be avoided here but there is a point considered to be essential to any Association which relishes and seeks to enhance our present freedoms of thought and speech.
    My opinion is that our present such freedoms are held with hardly any thanks to “Judaism and Christianity”, as Mullen claims. These disciplines (“faiths”), in their heyday, relished the concept of heresy and frequently barbecued any offenders with alacrity, and support in the Old Testament. It is only with the virtual collapse some time ago of greater Christendom that the growths of atheism and secularism have allowed our present freedoms to flourish. Clearly, the evidence of declining church attendances shows that this process continues, though having some way yet to go.
    One might hope that the Association recognises these aspects in pursuance of its highest aims.
  • commented 2018-01-22 13:27:06 +0000
    From Peter Mullen:

    Dear Mr Hopkins

    Oh I don’t think for a minute that Christians and Jews have clean hands, but on the whole, and I think with the backing of history, I think Judaism and Christianity have produced a better civilisation than anything that could possibly have been created by the appalling (and irrational) Lenin

    Thanks very much for your comment

    Peter
  • commented 2018-01-21 15:55:05 +0000
    The philosophy and actions of Lenin remain (just) within living memory and citizens of modern democracies seem fully justified in condemning the atrocities committed by him and his successors against many sections of Russian populace.
    However, it is specious of Mullen to suggest, as it seems he does, that western religions, including those near to home, have had “clean hands” in ancient and modern historical times.
    Any unblinkered reading of, for instance, the Christian Old Testament gives ample “evidence” that its God is revealed to be vengeful, narrow-minded, bloodthirsty and indifferent to suffering on repeated large scales. It is, truly, a collection of almost uniformly, uncivilised, dreadful texts.
    From this, it is an abomination that our youngsters are enthusiastically exposed to its manifest awfulness before they reach ages of full discretion to accept or reject it and, certainly, required to pledge their allegiances at so-called confirmation, typically in mid-teens.
    To retain credibility, Mullen might consider becoming more discriminating in his preferences.