Tuesday 17 December 2013

Lenin at it's Best

We fully regard civil wars, i.e., wars waged by the oppressed class against the oppressing class, slaves against slave-owners, serfs against land-owners, and wage-workers against the bourgeoisie, as legitimate, progressive and necessary.

Monday 11 November 2013

Basic Strategies for Guerilla Warfare

 The urban guerrilla who correctly carries through his apprenticeship and training must give the greatest possible importance to his method of carrying out actions, for in this he cannot commit the slightest error. Any carelessness in learning tactics and their use invites certain disaster, as experience teaches us every day. Common criminals commit errors frequently because of their tactics, and this is one of the reasons why the urban guerrillas must be so insistently preoccupied with following revolutionary tactics, and not the tactics of bandits. And not only for that reason. There is no urban guerrilla worthy of the name who ignores the revolutionary method of action and fails to practice it rigorously in the planning and execution of his activities.

"The giant is known by his toe." The same can be said of the urban guerrilla, who is known from afar by his correct tactics and his absolute fidelity to principle.
The revolutionary method of carrying out actions is strongly and forcefully based on the knowledge and use of the following elements:

1. investigation and intelligence gathering
2. observation and vigilance
3. reconnaissance, or exploration of the terrain
4. study and timing of routes
5. mapping
6. mechanization
7. careful selection of personnel
8. selection of firepower
9. study and practice in success
10. success
11. use of cover
12. retreat
13. dispersal
14. the liberation or transfer of prisoners
15. the elimination of evidence
l6. the rescue of wounded

Solidarity to the Black Power Movement!

Wednesday 6 November 2013

A Daring Letter to the Principal of Sri venkateswara College, University of Delhi


The Principal

Sri Venkateswara

Benito Juarez Marg

Dhaula Kuan

Sub: Student accommodation and students’ rights

Dear ma’am

With all due respect, I am writing to inform you about the ordeals and the tribulations faced by the students of your college on various grounds right from administrational autonomy and rude behavior of office bearers to lack of even the most basic amenities needed the most by students like ample campus housing, lack of proper drinking water and excessive use of force and guards on student campus and not only will I point out the problems but I will also guide you to the solutions to these problems. Moreover, I would also point to you the consequences should you choose not to heed to my peacefully put solutions for a better and more student friendly campus. In the end, after having created a viable and substantial argument from the perspective of a common student, I would then give your good-self an ultimatum to heed to our demands which would be firm, resolute and absolute. I hope that by the time you reach the end of the letter, you would be so convinced with our issues and agenda that you would be sympathetic to us and give us the proper treatment we so deserve as students of Sri Venkateswara and students of Delhi University.

I would start by pointing to the autocratic nature of the college administration and the hierarchal setup the office bearers who misuse their power for all but students’ welfare and leave no transparency in the working of various aspects of college to students even on their demands. First of all, the counter system of the office is in itself flawed in many ways. The counter system puts pressure on students as students wait in long queues for even the most common work like verification of bus pass forms had the administration not acted so prejudiced and arrogant. We are students, not a bunch of lepers whom you don’t even let inside your office. This is a malpractice that you must eradicate or else the student activists will eradicate it for you. There should at least such amount of official forum between students and administration where a certain level of personal contact or even an emotional one can be possible.

Further, it has also come to notice to certain student activists that a child with disabilities was mistreated by the ICT lab authorities when he went there to avail the username and password for college Wi-Fi. I take it you are well aware that the college internet connectivity is more mine than yours and in fact the whole college is more mine than yours, me being the whole student community here. It is for shame that the college authorities don’t understand this and resort to such fascist sentiments. It has come to notice to certain activists that even though the officials were free and were just lounging around in their ICT office, they said they were busy and the student couldn’t make it out as he was blind. In a way, the officials made a joke on his blindness which is completely unacceptable in a college where there is an active and working Equal Opportunity Cell. This is a direct violation of students’ rights and therefore the administration is liable to action. This is the kind of dictatorial regime the college apparatus of Sri Venkateswara has become and somewhere the student population is to be blamed for all this because we remained silent and let the forces that be take over us our rights, our freedom and our space.

Let me enlighten you with some words about the student population. You might think that ‘student power’ or student mobilization’ are words people use in a speech to make it more rhetorical and fiery. A student is the loneliest person in the world. Students who come from small states or different states will tell you the difficulties of being a student. They are the most miserable, downtrodden and ignored sect of our society, especially here at Delhi University, and more so at Sri Venkateswara. A student from a small city has to cope with many problems than just the course work and the studies in the college and he cannot be called a ‘student’ anymore. When the University ceases to take responsibility of students’ housing and accommodation, food and travel, books and other services, it throws the student into a web of darkness and myriad problems. This is unfair for the student as he is only a student, and he is only supposed to be that way. He is not supposed to be caught in the finance troubles of juggling rent of paying guest accommodation, three-course meal and cost of buying the semester books. As you might know, the University has implemented the Four Year Undergraduate Program Under which there would be four years of undergraduate courses, and under which there was an over-admission of students in almost every course. But the hostel facilities were granted to only one or two students per course. The College authority cannot hide behind the reason of ‘not having enough funds’ because Sri Vekateswara receives bi-annual funding from both Andhra-based TTD committee and Delhi University (Central Govt.). Please understand the compulsion which enabled us to do such extensive research and to go to such extent for our rights. Please try to grasp the fact that we students are humans too, we are a minority too, but there is no Party, no committee, no pressure group for fighting and protecting our rights so we fight our own battles and we take arms to protect our own rights. We take the path of protests and break the barricades of the fascist setup that enslaves us. But we do not do it for our pleasure. We do it just because of the situation you arise, your authority arises and your administration arises. You violate our rights and you expect us to be quiet and then you impose yourself on us even when we are silent.

A great example of your dictatorial stance is the daily appointment of a uniformed guard at the College gate. Let me enlighten you as you may not know properly because your house falls inside the college camps but the guard standing at the gate is dressed in Khaki and enjoys the power that comes with it. I remind you again that the college is a student space and not an LOC border or a terrorist liberated zone where you set up uniformed men. I urge you to stop turning the college campus into a police cantonment.

Actions like these could have been taken silently by students in the past but we have suffered too much now to remain silent. I myself have been at the helm of the ordeals that have cast me now to the path of student activism and fighting for students’ rights. I come from the small town of Andaman and Nicobar and I came to study English literature with aspirations of greatness and ambition but the beasts of real life and the hounds of struggling in a big city gnawed and teethed on my intellectual soul. I was thrown out of my paying guest accommodation because I was contesting for the Delhi University Students’ Union Elections. Consequently, I had to pay a month’s rent for the room in which I stayed for just two days and then I had to pay the full rent, plus the advance and the security deposit for a new room. I was broken, disheartened and totally financially bankrupt. It took me some time to get out of the depression state which I was in.

 Then hidden among the jungles, I find a place of escape, the opium of intellectual mind, Jawaharlal Nehru University and I get more and more engrossed in the campus lifestyle, the witty debates and discussions and the laid out overall environment of a University Campus whose semester fee is just about 200 rupees and the hostel fee is 20 rupees a month and every potential student is given a hostel. Then I analyzed the reason for the establishment of such an idealistic society and this was where I found out about the history of student activism at JNU. The students of JNU are more than aware of their rights and not only are they aware but they are also willing to readily fight whenever their rights are violated. And they don’t stop there. The students there also fight for issues that affect the society in which they live like gender sensitization, minority witch-hunt, fake encounters, peasant revolution and corruption. They have always been at the forefront of activism be it their issues or not, and so they reaped the benefits of their labor.

They have set the example for the next generation of students, us, which you being the educator, the system, could not and they have inspired us to fight for our rights because we have right on our side. They taught us that there is nothing wrong in questioning you vocally, and if need be physically because you are employed because of us and in a way we are your employers. We are the ones whom you should provide the finest service that you never do, not in terms of academic education, or self conduct or basic civil necessities. Let me ask you why there is over a dozen blocks of staff housing when there is not enough housing for students. At least the staff gets a regular salary with which it can afford a lavish house and on the other hand, a student has to spend thousands in college fees, not counting the thousands more on accommodation. This is totally unfair and is a slander of basic students’ rights. Teachers are supposed to be the example for students and here the teachers themselves are money-minded and selfish and the worst part of it is that they are money minded and selfish at the cost of the students.

But now the students are organizing, they are mobilizing. They will not tolerate the lack of housing for their fellow comrades. They will not tolerate the autonomy of college administration and complete opacity in their working. They will not tolerate being shouted at or ignored over by the college staff. They will not tolerate cheap drinking water that is too old to drink just because the maintenance staff is unable to keep a proper water purifier and stabilizing cooler at every floor. They will not tolerate the fascist hierarchy that has been prevailing for long in the college. They will not tolerate the deterioration of any and every student right that is entitled to them, to us, as a part of the Venkateswara student community, as a part of the Delhi University student community.
I have been very respectably and cordially giving you the problems faced by the student community and the solutions that you can opt for that would work towards a mutual benefit but now I must levy upon you the charges, the sentence, the accusation and the ultimatum that we as students, the heartbeat of the education system, the youth and immediate future of the country, and your indirect employers have decided. We would occupy the college ground with every bit of luggage we brought with us as a student because it is the college’s and the University’s combined responsibility to take care of our housing and our belongings which are supposed to be in a college hostel rather than an expensive but worthless paying guest accommodation. We will not vacate the college premises as long as we are not transferred to a college-controlled permanent housing for which we are willing to pay too. This is not just a movement for student accommodation but for every student right that has been incessantly broken down and violated by the whims and fancies of the college authorities. The occupy movement will be convened at an unspecific time if in three days there isn’t a valid assurance for your side. I hope you heed the gravity of the situation, the serious tone of this letter and of the moment and the prime importance of time which you should follow through in your correspondence. This is propaganda of the deed. The whole student community of the college is expected to be a part of this. We have nothing to lose but the chains that enslave us. We have a world to win.

Hoping for a favorable reply from your end.

Yours sincerely


Mobile no: 96503438756

Tuesday 5 November 2013

Philosophy as a revolutionary weapon

1 Can you tell us a little about your personal history? What brought you to Marxist philosophy?

In 1948, when I was 30, I became a teacher of philosophy and joined the PCF. Philosophy was an interest; I was trying to make it my profession. Politics was a passion; I was trying to become a Communist militant.
My interest in philosophy was aroused by materialism and its critical function: for scientific knowledge, against all the mystifications of ideological ‘knowledge’. Against the merely moral denunciation of myths and lies, for their rational and rigorous criticism. My passion for politics was inspired by the revolutionary instinct, intelligence, courage and heroism of the working class in its struggle for socialism. The War and the long years of captivity had brought me into living contact with workers and peasants, and acquainted me with Communist militants.
It was politics which decided everything. Not politics in general: Marxist-Leninist politics.
First I had to find them and understand them. That is always extremely difficult for an intellectual. It was just as difficult in the fifties and sixties, for reasons with which you are familiar: the consequences of the ‘cult’, the Twentieth Congress, then the crisis of the international Communist Movement. Above all, it was not easy to resist the spread of contemporary ‘humanist’ ideology, and bourgeois ideology’s other assaults on Marxism.
Once I had a better understanding of Marxist-Leninist politics, I began to have a passion for philosophy too, for at last I began to understand the great thesis of Marx, Lenin and Gramsci: that philosophy is fundamentally political.
Everything that I have written, at first alone, later in collaboration with younger comrades and friends, revolves, despite the ‘abstraction’ of our essays, around these very concrete questions.

2 Can you be more precise: why is it generally so difficult to be a Communist in philosophy?

To be a Communist in philosophy is to become a partisan and artisan of Marxist-Leninist philosophy: of dialectical materialism.
It is not easy to become a Marxist-Leninist philosopher. Like every ‘intellectual’, a philosophy teacher is a petty bourgeois. When he opens his mouth, it is petty-bourgeois ideology that speaks: its resources and ruses are infinite.
You know what Lenin says about ‘intellectuals’. Individually certain of them may (politically) be declared revolutionaries, and courageous ones. But as a mass, they remain ‘incorrigibly’ petty-bourgeois in ideology. Gorky himself was, for Lenin, who admired his talents, a petty-bourgeois revolutionary. To become ‘ideologists of the working class’ (Lenin), ‘organic intellectuals’ of the proletariat (Gramsci), intellectuals have to carry out a radical revolution in their ideas: a long, painful and difficult re-education. An endless external and internal struggle.
Proletarians have a ‘class instinct’ which helps them on the way to proletarian ‘class positions’. Intellectuals, on the contrary, have a petty-bourgeois class instinct which fiercely resists this transition.
A proletarian class position is more than a mere proletarian ‘class instinct’. It is the consciousness and practice which conform with the objective reality of the proletarian class struggle. Class instinct is subjective and spontaneous. Class position is objective and rational. To arrive at proletarian class positions, the class instinct of proletarians only needs to be educated ; the class instinct of the petty bourgeoisie, and hence of intellectuals, has, on the contrary, to be revolutionized. This education and this revolution are, in the last analysis, determined by proletarian class struggle conducted on the basis of the principles of Marxist-Leninist theory.
As the Communist Manifesto says, knowledge of this theory can help certain intellectuals to go over to working class positions.
Marxist-Leninist theory includes a science (historical materialism) and a philosophy (dialectical materialism).
Marxist-Leninist philosophy is therefore one of the two theoretical weapons indispensable to the class struggle of the proletariat. Communist militants must assimilate and use the principles of the theory: science and philosophy. The proletarian revolution needs militants who are both scientists (historical materialism) and philosophers (dialectical materialism) to assist in the defence and development of theory.
The formation of these philosophers runs up against two great difficulties.
A first – political – difficulty. A professional philosopher who joins the Party remains, ideologically, a petty bourgeois. He must revolutionize his thought in order to occupy a proletarian class position in philosophy.
This political difficulty is ‘determinant in the last instance’.
A second – theoretical – difficulty. We know in what direction and with what principles we must work in order to define this class position in philosophy. But we must develop Marxist philosophy: it is theoretically and politically urgent to do so. Now, this work is vast and difficult. For in Marxist theory, philosophy has lagged behind the science of history.
Today, in our countries, this is the ‘dominant’ difficulty.

3 You therefore distinguish between a science and a philosophy in Marxist theory? As you know, this distinction is often contested today.

I know. But this ‘contestation’ is an old story.
To be extremely schematic, it may be said that, in the history of the Marxist movement, the suppression of this distinction has expressed either a rightist or a leftist deviation. The rightist deviation suppresses philosophy: only science is left (positivism). The leftist deviation suppresses science: only philosophy is left (subjectivism). There are ‘exceptions’ to this (cases of ‘inversion’), but they ‘confirm’ the rule.
The great leaders of the Marxist Workers’ Movement from Marx and Engels to today have always said: these deviations are the result of the influence and domination of bourgeois ideology over Marxism. For their part, they always defended the distinction (science, philosophy), not only for theoretical, but also for vital political reasons. Think of Lenin in Materialism and Empirio-criticism or ‘Left-WingCommunism. His reasons are blindingly obvious.

4 How do you justify this distinction between science and philosophy in Marxist theory?

I shall answer you by formulating a number of provisional and schematic theses.
1. The fusion of Marxist theory and the Workers’ Movement is the most important event in the whole history of the class struggle, i.e. in practically the whole of human history (first effects: the socialist revolutions).
2. Marxist theory (science and philosophy) represents an unprecedented revolution in the history of human knowledge.
3. Marx founded a new science: the science of history. Let me use an image. The sciences we are familiar with have been installed in a number of great ‘continents’. Before Marx, two such continents had been opened up to scientific knowledge: the continent of Mathematics and the continent of Physics. The first by the Greeks (Thales), the second by Galileo. Marx opened up a third continent to scientific knowledge: the continent of History.
4. The opening up of this new continent has induced a revolution in philosophy. That is a law: philosophy is always linked to the sciences.
Philosophy was born (with Plato) at the opening up of the continent of Mathematics. It was transformed (with Descartes) by the opening up of the continent of Physics. Today it is being revolutionized by the opening up of the continent of History by Marx. This revolution is called dialectical materialism.
Transformations of philosophy are always rebounds from great scientific discoveries. Hence in essentials, they arise after the event. That is why philosophy has lagged behind science in Marxist theory. There are other reasons which we all know about. But at present this is the dominant one.

5. As a mass, only proletarian militants have recognized the revolutionary scope of Marx’s scientific 
discovery. Their political practice has been transformed by it.
And here we come to the greatest theoretical scandal in contemporary history.

As a mass, the intellectuals, on the contrary, even those whose ‘professional’ concern it is (specialists in the human sciences, philosophers), have not really recognized, or have refused to recognize, the unprecedented scope of Marx’s scientific discovery, which they have condemned and despised, and which they distort when they do discuss it.
With a few exceptions, they are still ‘dabbling’ in political economy, sociology, ethnology, ‘anthropology’, ‘social psychology’, etc., etc...., even today, one hundred years after Capital, just as some Aristotelian physicists were still ‘dabbling’ in physics, fifty years after Galileo. Their ‘theories’ are ideological anachronisms, rejuvenated with a large dose of intellectual subtleties and ultra-modern mathematical techniques.
But this theoretical scandal is not a scandal at all. It is an effect of the ideological class struggle: for it is bourgeois ideology, bourgeois ‘culture’ which is in power, which exercises ‘hegemony’. As a mass, the intellectuals, including many Communist and Marxist intellectuals, are, with exceptions, dominated in their theories by bourgeois ideology. With exceptions, the same thing happens in the ‘human’ sciences.

6. The same scandalous situation in philosophy. Who has understood the astounding philosophical revolution induced by Marx’s discovery? Only proletarian militants and leaders. As a mass, on the contrary, professional philosophers have not even suspected it. When they mention Marx it is always, with extremely rare exceptions, to attack him, to condemn him, to ‘absorb’ him, to exploit him or to revise him.

Those, like Engels and Lenin, who have defended dialectical materialism, are treated as philosophically insignificant. The real scandal is that certain Marxist philosophers have succumbed to the same infection, in the name of ‘anti-dogmatism’. But here, too, the reason is the same: the effect of the ideological class struggle. For it is bourgeois ideology, bourgeois ‘culture’, which is in power.

7. The crucial tasks of the Communist movement in theory :
– to recognize and know the revolutionary theoretical scope of Marxist-Leninist science and philosophy;
– to struggle against the bourgeois and petty-bourgeois world outlook which always threatens Marxist theory, and which deeply impregnates it today. The general form of this world outlook: Economism (today ‘technocracy’) and its ‘spiritual complement’ Ethical Idealism (today ‘Humanism’). Economism and Ethical Idealism have constituted the basic opposition in the bourgeois world outlook since the origins of the bourgeoisie. The current philosophical form of this world outlook: neo-positivism and its ‘spiritual complement’, existentialist-phenomenological subjectivism. The variant peculiar to the Human Sciences: the ideology called ‘structuralist’;
– to conquer for science the majority of the Human Sciences, above all, the Social Sciences, which, with exceptions, have occupied as imposters the continent of History, the continent whose keys Marx has given us;
– to develop the new science and philosophy with all the necessary rigour and daring, linking them to the requirements and inventions of the practice of revolutionary class struggle.
In theory, the decisive link at present: Marxist-Leninist philosophy.

5 You have said two apparently contradictory or different things : 1. philosophy is basically political ; 2. philosophy is linked to the sciences. How do you conceive this double relationship?

Here again I shall give my answer in the form of schematic and provisional theses.
1. The class positions in confrontation in the class struggle are ‘represented’ in the domain of practical ideologies (religious, ethical, legal, political, aesthetic ideologies) by world outlooks of antagonistic tendencies: in the last instance idealist (bourgeois) and materialist (proletarian). Everyone had a world outlook spontaneously.
2. World outlooks are represented in the domain of theory (science + the ‘theoretical’ ideologies which surround science and scientists) by philosophy. Philosophy represents the class struggle in theory. That is why philosophy is a struggle (Kampf said Kant), and basically a political struggle: a class struggle. Everyone is not a philosopher spontaneously, but everyone may become one.
3. Philosophy exists as soon as the theoretical domain exists: as soon as a science (in the strict sense) exists. Without sciences, no philosophy, only world outlooks. The stake in the battle and the battle-field must be distinguished. The ultimate stake of philosophical struggle is the struggle for hegemony between the two great tendencies in world outlook (materialist and idealist). The main battlefield in this struggle is scientific knowledge: for it or against it. The number-one philosophical battle therefore takes place on the frontier between the scientific and the ideological. There the idealist philosophies which exploit the sciences struggle against the materialist philosophies which serve the sciences. The philosophical struggle is a sector of the class struggle between world outlooks. In the past, materialism has always been dominated by idealism.

4. The science founded by Marx has changed the whole situation in the theoretical domain. It is a new science: the science of history. Therefore, for the first time ever, it has enabled us to know the world outlooks which philosophy represents in theory; it enables us to know philosophy. It provides the means to transform the world outlooks (revolutionary class struggle conducted according to the principles of Marxist theory). Philosophy is therefore doubly revolutionized. Mechanistic materialism, ‘idealistic in history’, becomes dialectical materialism. The balance of forces is reversed: now materialism can dominate idealism in philosophy, and, if the political conditions are realized, it can carry the class struggle for hegemony between world outlooks.
Marxist-Leninist philosophy, or dialectical materialism, represents the proletarian class struggle in theory. In the union of Marxist theory and the Workers’ Movement (the ultimate reality of the union of theory and practice) philosophy ceases, as Marx said, to ‘interpret the world’. It becomes a weapon with which ‘to change it’: revolution.

6 Are these the reasons which have made you say that it is essential to read Capital today?
Yes. It is essential to read and study Capital.
– in order really to understand, in all its scope and all its scientific and philosophical consequences, what proletarian militants have long understood in practice: the revolutionary character of Marxist theory.
– in order to defend that theory against all the bourgeois and petty-bourgeois interpretations, i.e. revisions, which seriously threaten it today: in the first place the opposition Economism/Humanism.
– in order to develop Marxist theory and produce the scientific concepts indispensable to the analysis of the class struggle today, in our countries and elsewhere.
It is essential to read and study Capital. I should add, it is necessary, essential to read and study Lenin, and all the great texts, old and new, to which has been consigned the experience of the class struggle of the international Workers’ Movement. It is essential to study the practical works of the Revolutionary Workers’ Movement in their reality, their problems and their contradictions: their past and, above all, their present history.

In our countries there are immense resources for the revolutionary class struggle today. But they must be sought where they are: in the exploited masses. They will not be ‘discovered’ without close contact with the masses, and without the weapons of Marxist-Leninist theory. The bourgeois ideological notions of ‘industrial society’, ‘neo-capitalism’, ‘new working class’, ‘affluent society’, ‘alienation’ and tutti quanti are anti-scientific and anti-Marxist: built to fight revolutionaries.
I should therefore add one further remark: the most important of all.
In order really to understand what one ‘reads’ and studies in these theoretical, political and historical works, one must directly experience oneself the two realities which determine them through and through: the reality of theoretical practice (science, philosophy) in its concrete life; the reality of the practice of revolutionary class struggle in its concrete life, in close contact with the masses. For if theory enables us to understand the laws of history, it is not intellectuals, nor even theoreticians, it is the masses who make history. It is essential to learn with theory – but at the same time and crucially, it is essential to learn with the masses.

7 You attach a great deal of importance to rigour, including a rigorous vocabulary. Why is that?

A single word sums up the master function of philosophical practice: ‘to draw a dividing line’ between the true ideas and false ideas. Lenin’s words.
But the same word sums up one of the essential operations in the direction of the practice of class struggle: ‘to draw a dividing line’ between the antagonistic classes. Between our class friends and our class enemies.
It is the same word. A theoretical dividing line between true ideas and false ideas. A political dividing line between the people (the proletariat and its allies) and the people’s enemies.
Philosophy represents the people’s class struggle in theory. In return it helps the people to distinguish in theory and in all ideas (political, ethical, aesthetic, etc.) between true ideas and false ideas. In principle, true ideas always serve the people; false ideas always serve the enemies of the people.
Why does philosophy fight over words? The realities of the class struggle are ‘represented’ by ‘ideas’ which are ‘represented’ by words. In scientific and philosophical reasoning, the words (concepts, categories) are ‘instruments’ of knowledge. But in political, ideological and philosophical struggle, the words are also weapons, explosives or tranquillizers and poisons. Occasionally, the whole class struggle may be summed up in the struggle for one word against another word. Certain words struggle amongst themselves as enemies. Other words are the site of an ambiguity: the stake in a decisive but undecided battle.
For example : Communists struggle for the suppression of classes and for a communist society, where, one day, all men will be free and brothers. However, the whole classical Marxist tradition has refused to say that Marxism is a Humanism. Why? Because practically, i.e. in the facts, the word Humanism is exploited by an ideology which uses it to fight, i.e. to kill, another, true, word, and one vital to the proletariat: the class struggle.
For example : revolutionaries know that, in the last instance, everything depends not on techniques, weapons, etc., but on militants, on their class consciousness, their devotion and their courage. However, the whole Marxist tradition has refused to say that it is ‘man’ who makes history. Why? Because practically, i.e. in the facts, this expression is exploited by bourgeois ideology which uses it to fight, i.e. to kill another, true, expression, one vital for the proletariat: it is the masses who make history.
At the same time, philosophy, even in the lengthy works where it is most abstract and difficult, fights over words: against lying words, against ambiguous words; for correct words. It fights over ‘shades of opinion’.
Lenin said: ‘Only short-sighted people can consider factional disputes and a strict differentiation between shades of opinion inopportune or superfluous. The fate of Russian Social-Democracy for very many years to come may depend on the strengthening of one or the other “shade.”’ (What is to be Done?).
The philosophical fight over words is a part of the political fight. Marxist-Leninist philosophy can only complete its abstract, rigorous and systematic theoretical work on condition that it fights both about very ‘scholarly’ words (concept, theory, dialectic, alienation, etc.) and about very simple words (man, masses, people, class struggle).

Wednesday 30 October 2013

The Dead By Jules Valles

The people who today saw our dead pass by will never forgive! Between them and the killers there is an abyss of hatred and fear dug as deep as the enormous pit into which the corpses were lowered.
The very ones who were frightened by the red flags that floated over the black catafalques will remember the ominous burial of April 6, and the men of Versailles, whatever may happen, will live cloaked in a silent and somber reprobation that will follow them, too, to the cemetery – whether they arrive by the glorious route of the Capitol, or arrive mutilated from the Tarpeian rocks!

Not a cry could be heard above that crowd that rolled like a black and silent river on all sides of the hearses, but everywhere could be heard the murmuring of a horrible, deliberate, and threatening pain.
If the men of Versailles had seen this convoy pass by they would have been seized either by a silent fear or an immense regret! On the path followed by the mortuary cart a curse will forever rise up against them – a formless and disarmed revolt, but one that will blow upon their dishonored faces like the sigh of a breeze of death!
The more corpses you pile up, and the more triumphs like this one come your way, the longer will be the lament and the more horribly it will weigh upon this mass grave!
Revolutionary hope remains alive even in our mourning!
But pale mothers could be found there, bowed over cut-off biers that had been guillotined by saws so that the heads of the dead could be seen.

One of these mothers had found her son. Another didn’t know if she recognized hers in a pile of broken, eyeless, toothless flesh that bled black on the white wood!
Twenty of them were laid out like that! Some in the shirts of the poor, frayed and full of holes; others had fine clothes. Plebeian and bourgeois mixed together in the sepulcher as they had been in combat!
Even as we were leaving more arrived in the straw at the bottom of a bus!
Perhaps tomorrow even more will be brought, ten times more!

Nevertheless, the music of the bugles gave chills today! How sad and heart-rending; it seemed to sound for the living as well as the dead!
Père Lachaise is a cemetery, but Paris is a tomb where they’ll be buried alive if they’re victorious, and which will refuse their cadavers if they are defeated!
Tonight the bayonets glistened hard and somber under the gray sky, and there were flashes of terrible sadness in the tearless eyes!

Monday 28 October 2013

Long Live the Heroic Peasants in Naxalbari!

The social system that exists in India is semi-feudal and semi-colonial. So the democratic revolution in this country means agrarian revolution. All the problems of India are related to this one task. On this question of agrarian revolution there has been difference of opinion in Marxist circles from the beginning of this century and among Marxists the struggle between the two policies-the one revolutionary and the other counter-revolutionary-continues. The Mensheviks side-tracked the question of State power and searched for a solution in municipalization. Lenin declared a crusade against it and said that it was not possible to solve the problem by side-tracking the question of State power. He showed that however progressive the legislation framed by one might be, the present State structure could not implement it. The condition of the peasant will remain the same. That was why he said that only the democratic State of workers and peasants, led by the working class, could solve this problem. Only the other day even the Soviet Party writer, Yudin, while criticizing Nehru's Basic Approach, said that Nehru had not till then been able to solve the peasant problem. He challenged Nehru to show, in practice, how this problem could be solved in a peaceful way and added that Nehru would fail to do so. History has proved that, far from solving this problem, Nehru was not able even to bring about an iota of change.

After the twentieth congress of the Soviet party, the door to revisionism was opened wide and, as a result, the Soviet State has been transformed from a Socialist State into a capitalist State. By making the theory of peaceful transition to socialism-adopted at that twentieth congress-their basic guiding principle, the revisionists of our country are shouting loudly that the peasants' struggle for land is a struggle for realization of economic demands and that it is adventurism to talk of the State machinery. What strange similarity between the words of Dange and Basavapunnia!

What strange cooperation between Biswanath Mukherji and Harekrishna Konar! This is not accidental since its source is one and that is the Menshevik counter-revolutionary ideology. That is why the cunning rulers of the Soviet State have repeatedly declared that it is only by using fertilizers, improved seeds and agricultural implements that India's food problem can be solved. It is in this manner that they are coming forward to save India's reactionary ruling clique; they are concealing from the masses the basic and effective way of solving India's food, unemployment, poverty and other problems. This is because the Soviet State is today collaborating with British-American imperialists and has been turned into a State which exploits the masses of India. With the help of the native bourgeoisie the Soviet Union is also trying to invest capital in our country. In the sphere of trade and commerce with our country it has come to enjoy special facilities. That is why the arguments of the reactionary ruling clique are pouring out from the mouths of its spokesmen in a continuous flow and at an uninterrupted speed. That is why, as a collaborator of Britain and the U.S.A.,the Soviet State also is our enemy and it is by taking shelter under their wings that the reactionary Government of India weighs like a corpse upon the shoulders of the masses. But even then Naxalbari has been created and hundreds of Naxalbaris are smouldering. This is because on the soil of India the revolutionary peasantry is heir to the heroic revolutionary peasants of great Telengana. The then Party leadership betrayed the heroic peasant struggle of Telengana and it did so by using the name of great Stalin. Many of those who are occupying the positions of Party leaders today were a party to the act of betrayal on that day! On bent knees, we will have to take lessons from those heroes of Telengana, not only to have strength to carry the red banner of revolt but also to have faith in the international revolutionary authority. What boundless respect they had for the international leadership-the name of Stalin made them place their lives fearlessly at the disposal of the reactionary government of India. In all ages and in all climes this revolutionary loyalty is necessary for organizing revolutions. We must learn from the experience of the heroes of Telengana: we must take the mask off the face of those who oppose Marxism-Leninism by using the name of Stalin. We will have to snatch from their hands the Red Flag dyed with the blood of hundreds of workers and peasants. The traitors have, by touching that Flag with their hands, stained it.
Naxalbari lives and will live. This is because it is based on invincible Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tsetung Thought. We know that as we move forward we shall face many obstacles, many difficulties, many acts of betrayal and there will be many setbacks. But Naxalbari will not die because the bright sunlight of Chairman Mao's Thought has fallen on it like a blessing. When Naxalbari receives congratulations from the heroes in the rubber plantations of Malaya who have been engaged in struggle for 20 years, when congratulations are sent by Japanese comrades who have been fighting against the revisionist leadership of their own Party, when such congratulations come from the Australian revolutionaries, when the comrades of the armed forces of great China send their greetings, we feel the significance of that immortal call, "Workers of the World, Unite", we have a feeling of oneness and our conviction becomes more strong and firm that we have our dear relations in all lands. Naxalbari has not died and it will never die.

Sunday 27 October 2013

We are All Assassins by Sartre

In November 1956 Fernand Yveton, member of the Combattants de la Libération, deposes a bomb in the power station at Hama. A sabotage attempt that can in no way be taken for an act of terrorism: expert testimony proved that it was a question of a time bomb, carefully set so that the explosion couldn’t occur before the departure of the personnel. It didn’t matter; Yveton is captured, he receives the death sentence, grace is refused and he is executed. There can be no hesitation about this: this man declared and proved he wanted to cause the death of no one; they wanted his death and they got it. Intimidation was necessary, was it not? That and, as an imbecile said the other day, “to show the terrible face of an irritated France.” How pure and certain of one’s purity one must be in order to render this archangelic justice. And even if one were to concede for a minute that this absurd war has a meaning, do we not see what these French soldiers and civilians must demand of themselves if they hope to justify the atrocious rigor of this condemnation?

A short while later came the trial of the “accomplices,” Jacqueline and Abdelkader Guerroudj. He is a political leader who ensured the liaison between the Combattants de la Libérationand the leadership of the FLN. She is a petite bourgeoise from the “metropolis” who wanted to take her share of the risks because she approved of her husband’s undertaking. She entered the movement well after him and her direct chiefs charged her, in November 1956, with giving Yveton the instruments for his future sabotage. She obeyed because she was guaranteed that the explosion wouldn’t cost any human lives.

For those who know the logic of military tribunals the sentence was not in doubt: since they had killed Yveton, and since the Guerroudj couple were his accomplices, they had to either go back on their decision or kill them as well. These predictions have since been confirmed. The government commissioner demanded the head of the accused, almost off-handedly. He obtained it. The complicity of the Guerroudjs in the Yveton affair wasn’t established? So what? In Algiers our justice prefers to shock the world with the severity of its sentences rather than by the quality of the proofs that support them.

Will they carry logic so far as to execute the Guerroudjs? As far as refusing presidential grace? If it was permitted to speak to the highest functionary of the Fourth Republic I would respectfully have him observe that we are no longer in the good old days of 1956. Since the Guerroudj trial an incident took place, a simple hitch to be sure, but which should nevertheless have some influence on our way of rendering justice, especially military justice: Sakiet. There were bombs at Sakiet, just as at the power station of Hama. Only they weren’t time bombs. And those responsible weren’t stupid enough to limit their operation to a simple deterioration of materiel. For at Sakiet as well the operation had been carefully chosen: it was that of the market. It’s true that Yveton’s only objective was to plunge a city into darkness. The objective of our planes was to plunge a village into death. If we had wanted to preserve our archangelic rigor we would perhaps have had to find the guilty and – who knows? – judge them. But no; M. Gaillard “covered” it. With what thick veil or impenetrable fog did he hope to “cover” the ruins of Sakiet? This I don’t know. But the operation didn’t succeed: the whole world saw the stones smoking in the sun. The only thing is that M. Gaillard is us; he is France. When from the height of his tribune he made the august gesture of covering it, he involved us all. Our foreign friends, as their press enjoys telling us every day, are beginning to seriously ask themselves if we haven’t become mad dogs. And here is the question we could humbly ask the first functionary of our great Republic: is it quite opportune to execute the Guerroudj couple? Would it not be in our interest to slacken our haughty severity a bit? A country whose government proudly takes credit for what M. Mauriac so accurately called the other day a “massacre of the poor,” is it truly qualified to have its representatives apply in its name the death penalty to a man whose sole role was that of ensuring the political liaison between a communist group and the FLN? To a woman who, participating in a sabotage operation, took all the necessary precautions so that the operation cause neither dead nor wounded? This has to be repeated every day to the imbeciles who want to frighten the universe by showing it “France’s terrible face.” France frightens no one; it no longer even has the means to intimidate: it’s beginning to horrify, and that is all. If it were ever to happen, the execution of the Guerroudjs, no one will see or admire our archangelic inflexibility; they’ll simply think that we have committed yet another crime.

Saturday 26 October 2013

Comrade by Maxim Gorky

All in that city was strange, incomprehensible. Churches in great number pointed their many tinted steeples toward the sky, in gleaming colours; but the walls and the chimneys of the factories rose still higher, and the temples were crushed between the massive façades of commercial houses, like marvellous flowers sprung up among the ruins, out of the dust. And when the bells called the faithful to prayer, their brazen sounds, sliding along the iron roofs, vanished, leaving no traces in the narrow gaps which separated the houses.

They were always large, and sometimes beautiful, these dwellings. Deformed people, ciphers, ran about like grey mice in the tortuous streets from morning till evening; and their eyes, full of covetousness, looked for bread or for some distraction; other men, placed at the crossways, watched with a vigilant and ferocious air, that the weak should, without murmuring, submit themselves to the strong. The strong were the rich; everyone believed that money alone gives power and liberty. All wanted power because all were slaves. The luxury of the rich begot the envy and hate of the poor; no one knew any finer music than the ring of gold; that is why each was the enemy of his neighbour, and cruelty reigned master.
Sometimes the sun shone over the city, but the life therein was always wan, and the people like shadows. At night they lit a mass of joyous lights; and then famishing women went out to the streets to sell their caresses to the highest bidder. Everywhere floated an odour of victuals, and the sullen and voracious look of the people grew. Over the city hovered a groan of misery, stifled, without strength to make itself heard.

Every one led an irksome, unquiet life; a general hostility was the rule. A few citizens only considered themselves just, but these were the most cruel, and their ferocity provoked that of the herd. All wanted to live; and no one knew or could follow freely the pathway of his desires; like an insatiable monster, the present enveloped in its powerful and vigorous arms the man who marched toward the future, and in that slimy embrace sapped away his strength. Full of anguish and perplexity, the man paused, powerless before the hideous aspect of this life; with its thousands of eyes, infinitely sad in their expression, it looked into his heart, asking him for it knew not what – and then the radiant images of the future died in his soul; a groan out of the powerless of the man mingled in the discordant chorus of lamentations and tears from poor human creatures tormented by life.
Tedium and inquietude reigned everywhere, and sometimes terror. And the dull and sober city, the stone buildings atrociously lined one against the other, shutting in the temples, were for men a prison, rebuffing the rays of the sun. And the music of life was smothered by the cry of suffering and rage, by the whisper of dissimulated hate, by the threatening bark of cruelty, by the voluptuous cry of violence.

In the sullen agitation caused by trial and suffering, in the feverish struggle of misery, in the vile slime of egotism, in the subsoils of the houses wherein vegetated Poverty, the creator of riches, solitary dreamers full of faith in Man, strangers to all, prophets of seditions, moved about like sparks issued from some far-off hearthstone of justice. Secretly they brought into these wretched holes tiny fertile seeds of a doctrine simple and grand – and sometimes rudely, with lightnings in their eyes, and sometimes mild and tender, they sowed this clear and burning truth in the sombre hearts of these slaves, transformed into mute, blind instruments by the strength of the rapacious, by the will of the cruel. And these sullen beings, these oppressed ones, listened without much belief to the music of the new words – the music for which their hearts had long been waiting. Little by little they lifted up their heads, and tore the meshes of the web of lies wherewith their oppressors had enwound them. In their existence, made up of silent and contained rage, in their hearts envenomed by numberless wrongs, in their consciences encumbered by the dupings of the wisdom of the strong, in this dark and laborious life, all penetrated with the bitterness of humiliation, had resounded a simple word:
It was not a new word; they had heard it and pronounced it themselves; but until then it had seemed to them void of sense, like all other words dulled by usage, and which one may forget without losing anything. But now this word, strong and clear, had another sound; a soul was singing in it – the facets of it shone brilliant as a diamond. The wretched accepted this word, and at first uttered it gently, cradling it in their hearts like a mother rocking her new-born child and admiring it. And the more they searched the luminous soul of the word, the more fascinating it seemed to them.
“Comrade,” said they.
And they felt that this word had come to unite the whole world, to lift all men up to the summits of liberty and bind with new ties, the strong ties of mutual respect, respect for the liberties of others in the name of one’s own liberty.
When this word had engraved itself upon the hearts of the slaves, they ceased to he slaves; and one day they announced their transformation to the city in this great human formula:
I will not.

Then life was suspended, for it is they who are the motor force of life, they and no other. The water supply stopped, the fire went out, the city was plunged in darkness. The masters began to tremble like children. Fear invaded the hearts of the oppressors. Suffocating in the fumes of their own dejection, disconcerted and terrified by the strength of the revolt, they dissimulated the rage which they felt against it.

The phantom of famine rose up before them, and their children wailed plaintively in the darkness. The houses and the temples, enveloped in shadow, melted into an inanimate chaos of iron and stone; a menacing silence filled the streets with a clamminess as of death; life ceased, for the force which created it had become conscious of itself; and enslaved humanity had found the magic and invincible word to express its will; it had enfranchised itself from the yoke; with its own eyes it had seen its might – the might of the creator.

These days were days of anguish to the rulers, to those who considered themselves the masters of life; each night was as long as thousands of nights, so thick was the gloom, so timidly shone the few fires scattered through the city. And then the monster city, created by the centuries, gorged with human blood, showed itself in all its shameful weakness; it was but a pitiable mass of stone and wood. The blind windows of the houses looked upon the street with a cold and sullen air, and out on the highway marched with valiant step the real masters of life. They, too, were hungry, more than the others, perhaps; but they were used to it, and the suffering of their bodies was not so sharp as the suffering of the old masters of life; it did not extinguish the fire in their souls. They glowed with the consciousness of their own strength, the presentiment of victory sparkled in their eyes. They went about in the streets of the city which had been their narrow and sombre prison, wherein they had been overwhelmed with contempt, wherein their souls had been loaded with abuse, and they saw the great importance of their work, and thus was unveiled to them the sacred right they had to become the masters of life, its creators and its law-givers.
And the life-giving word of union presented itself to them with a new face, with a blinding clearness:
There among lying words it rang out boldly, as the joyous harbinger of the time to come, of a new life open to all in the future – far or near? They felt that it depended upon them whether they advanced towards liberty or themselves deferred its coming.
The prostitute who, but the evening before, was but a hungry beast, sadly waiting on the muddy pavement to be accosted by someone who would buy her caresses, the prostitute, too, heard this word, but was undecided whether to repeat it. A man the like of whom she had never seen till then approached her, laid his hand upon her shoulder and said to her in an affectionate tone, “Comrade.” And she gave a little embarrassed smile, ready to cry with the joy her wounded heart experienced for the first time. Tears of pure gaiety shone in her eyes, which, the night before, had looked at the world with the stupid and insolent expression of a starving animal. In all the streets of the city the outcasts celebrated the triumph of their reunion with the great family of workers of the entire world; and the dead eyes of the houses looked on with an air more and more cold and menacing.

The beggar to whom but the night before an obol was thrown, price of the compassion of the well-fed, the beggar also, heard this word; and it was the first alms which aroused a feeling of gratitude in his poor heart gnawed by misery.
A coachman, a great big fellow whose patrons struck him that their blows might be transmitted to his thin-flanked, weary horse; this man, imbruted by the noise of wheels upon the pavement, said, smiling, to a passer by: “Well, comrade!” He was frightened at his own words. He took the reins in his hands, ready to start, and looked at the passer by, the joyous smile not yet effaced from his big face. The other cast a friendly glance at him and answered, shaking his head: “Thanks, comrade; I will go on foot; I am not going far.”
“Ah, the fine fellow!” exclaimed the coachman enthusiastically; he stirred in his seat, winking his eyes gaily, and started off somewhere with a great clatter.
The people went in groups crowded together on the pavements, and the great word destined to unite the world burst out more and more often among them, like a spark: “Comrade.” A policeman, bearded, fierce, and filled with the consciousness of his own importance, approached the crowd surrounding an old orator at the corner of a street, and, after having listened to the discourse, he said slowly: “Assemblages are interdicted ... disperse.” ... And after a moment’s silence, lowering his eyes, he added, in a lower tone, “Comrades.”

The pride of young combatants was depicted in the faces of those who carried the word in their hearts, who had given it flesh and blood and the appeal to union; one felt that the strength they so generously poured into this living word was indestructible, inexhaustible.
Here and there blind troops of armed men, dressed in grey, gathered and formed ranks in silence; it was the fury of the oppressors preparing to repulse the wave of justice.
And in the narrow streets of the immense city, between the cold and silent walls raised by the hands of ignored creators, the noble belief in man and in fraternity grew and ripened.
“Comrade.” – Sometimes in one corner, sometimes in another, the fire burst out. Soon this fire would become the conflagration destined to enkindle the earth with the ardent sentiment of kinship, uniting all its peoples; destined to consume and reduce to ashes the rage, hate, and cruelty by which we are mutilated; the conflagration which will embrace all hearts, melt them into one – the heart of the world, the heart of beings noble and just – into one united family of workers.
In the streets of the dead city, created by slaves, in the streets of the city where cruelty reigned, faith in humanity and in victory over self and over the evil of the world, grew and ripened. And in the vague chaos of a dull and troubled existence, a simple word, profound as the heart, shone like a star, like a light guiding toward the future: Comrade!


Hegelian Dialectics

Hegel's System of Knowledge

Tuesday 22 October 2013

Charu Mazumder to the Students and Youth Revolutionaries

AFTER the death of the great Marxist-Leninist, Stalin, the Soviet revisionist renegade clique usurped the leadership of the state, party and the army and established a bourgeois dictatorship in the Soviet Union, the land of the Great October Socialist Revolution. This revisionist renegade clique has become the leader and focal point of the revisionists of the world. Naturally, after the establishment of bourgeois dictatorship, they have become the No. 1 accomplice of the imperialists; particularly, they have advanced far along the road of collaboration with the U.S. imperialists. This is because U.S. imperialism is today the leader of the imperialist camp, and is pursuing even more fiercely and widely the aggressive policies of the German, Italian and Japanese imperialists. The traitorous leaders of the Soviet Union are supporting these aggressive activities and even use Lenin's name to belittle them and are themselves carrying on colonial exploitation with various imperialist powers and, in particular, with U.S. imperialism. By acting in this way, the leaders of the Soviet state and party have turned into enemies of all liberation struggles of the world, enemies of the great Socialist China, enemies of communism and even of the Soviet people. In India also they are acting as No. 1 accomplice of U.S. imperialism and are directing the state power and exploiting the people of India. As in various other parts of the world, they are allies of the reactionaries in India and support them. That is why India's liberation struggle can win victory only by fighting against the guns of the Soviet revisionists and by hitting out at the Soviet revisionists' state power. This explains why the Dange clique and the neo-revisionist leadership have, by their actions, joined the Indian reactionary clique and have turned into enemies of all democratic movements. They consciously and zealously support the bourgeois and imperialist propaganda.

It is because of these world developments that the thought of Chairman Mao has emerged as the only Marxism-Leninism, Marxism-Leninism which he has greatly developed and enriched through the great proletarian cultural revolution. This is why the world has entered today into the era of Mao Tse-tung's thought. Therefore, the thought of Chairman Mao can be called Marxism of the era of the total collapse of imperialism.
So, the political task of the student and youth workers is to study this new and developed Marxism, the thought of Chairman Mao, and put it into practice. He who shuns this task can never acquire the knowledge about the principles of Marxism. They must, therefore, study the Quotations of Chairman Mao Tse-tung. As Chairman Mao has said, there can only be one criterion by which we should judge whether a youth or a student is a revolutionary. This criterion is whether or not he is willing to integrate himself with the broad masses of workers and peasants, does so in practice and carries on mass work.

The Quotations of People's War published by the Central Committee of the great Communist Party of China is now available with us, a Bengali translation of which has also been published. This book is meant for revolutionary workers and peasants. We should make this our propaganda and agitation material. Whether a worker is revolutionary or not will be judged on the basis of the number of workers and peasants to whom he has read out and explained this book.
We have seen how good agitators in the student movement, how even students who fought in the barricade over some student demand or political issue, subsequently sat for the I.A.S. examination and became administrators, that is, went over to the enemy camp. As Chairman Mao teaches us, only those students and youth who can integrate themselves with the masses of peasants and workers are revolutionaries; those who cannot are at first non-revolutionaries and may in some cases join the counter-revolutionary camp afterwards.

This is a lesson which we get not only from China but from every country in the world. From my own experience I can say that unless the revolutionaries in the towns and cities undertake this task, they will eventually become demoralized and degenerate.
The political organization of the youth and the students must necessarily be a Red Guard organization, and they should undertake the task of spreading the Quotations of Chairman Mao as widely as possible in different areas.

Monday 21 October 2013

All Things Are Nothing to Me By Max Stirner

I've set my cause on nothing
[Ich hab’ mein’ Sach’ auf nichts gestellt]

What is not supposed to be my concern [Sache] ! First and foremost, the good cause [Sache], then God’s cause, the cause of mankind, of truth, of freedom, of humanity, of justice; further, the cause of my people, my prince, my fatherland; finally, even the cause of Mind, and a thousand other causes. Only my cause is never to be my concern. “Shame on the egoist who thinks only of himself!”
Let us look and see, then, how they manage their concerns – they for whose cause we are to labour, devote ourselves, and grow enthusiastic.

You have much profound information to give about God, and have for thousands of years “searched the depths of the Godhead,” and looked into its heart, so that you can doubtless tell us how God himself attends to “God’s cause,” which we are called to serve. And you do not conceal the Lord’s doings, either. Now, what is his cause? Has he, as is demanded of us, made an alien cause, the cause of truth or love, his own? You are shocked by this misunderstanding, and you instruct us that God’s cause is indeed the cause of truth and love, but that this cause cannot be called alien to him, because God is himself truth and love; you are shocked by the assumption that God could be like us poor worms in furthering an alien cause as his own. “Should God take up the cause of truth if he were not himself truth?” He cares only for his cause, but, because he is all in all, therefore all is his cause! But we, we are not all in all, and our cause is altogether little and contemptible; therefore we must “serve a higher cause.” – Now it is clear, God cares only for what is his, busies himself only with himself, thinks only of himself, and has only himself before his eyes; woe to all that is not well pleasing to him. He serves no higher person, and satisfies only himself. His cause is – a purely egoistic cause.
How is it with mankind, whose cause we are to make our own? Is its cause that of another, and does mankind serve a higher cause? No, mankind looks only at itself, mankind will promote the interests of mankind only, mankind is its own cause. That it may develop, it causes nations and individuals to wear themselves out in its service, and, when they have accomplished what mankind needs, it throws them on the dung-heap of history in gratitude. Is not mankind’s cause – a purely egoistic cause?
I have no need to take up each thing that wants to throw its cause on us and show that it is occupied only with itself, not with us, only with its good, not with ours. Look at the rest for yourselves. Do truth, freedom, humanity, justice, desire anything else than that you grow enthusiastic and serve them?

They all have an admirable time of it when they receive zealous homage. Just observe the nation that is defended by devoted patriots. The patriots fall in bloody battle or in the fight with hunger and want; what does the nation care for that? By the manure of their corpses the nation comes to “its bloom"! The individuals have died “for the great cause of the nation,” and the nation sends some words of thanks after them and – has the profit of it. I call that a paying kind of egoism.
But only look at that Sultan who cares so lovingly for his people. Is he not pure unselfishness itself, and does he not hourly sacrifice himself for his people? Oh, yes, for “his people.” Just try it; show yourself not as his, but as your own; for breaking away from his egoism you will take a trip to jail. The Sultan has set his cause on nothing but himself; he is to himself all in all, he is to himself the only one, and tolerates nobody who would dare not to be one of “his people.”
And will you not learn by these brilliant examples that the egoist gets on best? I for my part take a lesson from them, and propose, instead of further unselfishly serving those great egoists, rather to be the egoist myself.

God and mankind have concerned themselves for nothing, for nothing but themselves. Let me then likewise concern myself for myself, who am equally with God the nothing of all others, who am my all, who am the only one [Der Einzige].
If God, if mankind, as you affirm, have substance enough in themselves to be all in all to themselves, then I feel that I shall still less lack that, and that I shall have no complaint to make of my “emptiness.” I am not nothing in the sense of emptiness, but I am the creative nothing [das schöpferiche Nichts], the nothing out of which I myself as creator create everything.
Away, then, with every concern that is not altogether my concern! You think at least the “good cause” must be my concern? What’s good, what’s bad? Why, I myself am my concern, and I am neither good nor bad. Neither has meaning for me. The divine is God’s concern; the human, man’s. My concern is neither the divine nor the human, not the true, good, just, free, etc., but solely what is mine [das Meinige] , and it is not a general one, but is – unique [einzig], as I am unique.
Nothing is more to me than myself!

Sunday 20 October 2013

Critique on the Four Year Undergraduate Program of Delhi University

The student referendum, with all its magnanimity of participation has made one fact crystal clear that the FYUP has been the bane of existence for the first ear students since its institutionalization and so a whopping 10,519 students voted against FYUP out of 11,556 which constitutes roughly 91% of the total votes. If we critically analyze the issue of FYUP, strip it naked and examine its private parts, we might find something very unwanted, hideous, grotesque, and outright repulsive. I won’t waste the ink in my pen and the matter in my hawking vile comments on FYUP, its course structure, its financial burden caused by the additional courses especially on those who pay double the rent of college hostel by staying at paying guest accommodation just because DU is not able to provide ample housing facilities to all its students, its worthless foundation courses or the anarchy it has created with the introduction of the applied and foundation courses and the irregularities in both infrastructure and time table.

I will go knee-deep into this muck of FYUP and discuss the orifice from where the grime of filth is ebbing out. Getting to the root base of this problem, we can as well put aside the Vice Chancellor’s claim of broadening the higher education horizon on a more ‘international’ basis as the Guardian; a British newspaper cites the FYUP as ‘a broken attempt at Americanization of India’s higher education system.

The fact of the matter is that this Four Year Program, in the long run, will actually deteriorate the reputation of the University so much so that the individual colleges would want total autonomy to save themselves from the embarrassment of the dissent in higher education and so the most prestigious Ivy League University in India would fall asunder paving way for privatization of the biggest and most booming sector, education. There is also the question raised on the newly issued books for foundation courses which are all published through private publishing houses even though DU is a central govt. university and so the books for the foundation courses could have been published availing subsidy by the NCERT but the VC and his lackeys brought the whole notion of privatization even in this context and entered into a coalition with the book mafia ensuring more money goes into their own pockets.

If we look more and more comprehensively into the apparent realities of FYUP and develop a critique, there are no bounds to the monetary profit that the VC and the DU administration gains through the implementation of the FYUP along with the foundation courses and all that a student gains is misery, bad education and an unsecure future, all thanks to the visionary and the avant-garde thinking of the most respected Mr. Dinesh Singh who very cunningly had avoided much student agitation by including the Congress student-hand in the students’ union panel judging the FYUP that would obviously support what the Party says with a blind eye to safeguard their own interest and make their own future political career while the future of DU with a dawn of this kind of corporate takeover is much like the state of Sanskrit Tols and Perso-Arabic Madrassas at the sawn of East India Company with its notion of ‘enlightenment’ which was imposed in that era and is imposed mow. In the end, things will fall apart if the students fail to see beyond the ‘Fucha fests’ and college parties and just look at the bare facts that would affect every single student of Delhi University at all possible levels with a painful sting if we fail to unite against the demise of the education provided in our University because finally we are the ones who will be at the receiving end of the FYUP after four years and I take it that all of us wouldn’t want to end up on the wrong side thinking we made a wrong choice and ended up in the wrong path because a revolt in our university will change the course of education of the whole nation as there has been much talk of establishing FYUP as the general norm for every single govt. university in India. It is time to fight for our right to a proper education and a prosperous future that is becoming and fit enough for the status of Delhi University. The time calls for us to struggle to study!