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Dugin urged Eurasian youth read Leninism 'magically, Eurasianly, eschatologically and geopolitically'

M. B. Medovarov "To the traditionalist reading of Leninism"

Russian Orthodoxy is communist,
and Russian communism is Orthodox.
All the troubles in the history of Russia happened
from the discord between Orthodoxy and communism.
As soon as they realize their
deep unity, Russia will rise up,
will regain its former greatness.
V.B. Mikushevich, "New Plato,
or Resurrection in the Third Rome

As you know, if it was quite natural for the "right" classics of the first half of the 20th century to consider the communist system and the Marxist-Leninist doctrine itself as a radical form of anti-traditional ideology - and no one can reproach them - then the further course of history led to a natural reasssment of the socialist project, which covered up to a third of the globe in the past century. That's why neo-Eurasianism openly admits that the Soviet system was less modernist and more archaic than Western liberalism. A.G. Dugin wrote: "I thought "Leninism" is the name of anti-traditional hypnosis. I just wasn't in the West, and I couldn't imagine that without any Leninism, humanity could go much lower... I recognized in Soviet society a paroxystic attempt to defend some of the foundations of traditional society against Western liberal-capitalist entropy. It is impossible to call the "traditional" Marxist model in a normal sense, but in comparison with the liberal model it has incomparably more features of traditional society"[i].

This has already become a common place, but usually we are talking only about the victory of the Russian "structure" over the Marxist "kerigma", as well as the role of Stalin as a restorer of many features of traditional society in Russia. The question is much less often asked whether it's only the "structure"? Did the very doctrine of Marxism-Leninism contain elements long before 1917 that were fundamentally incompatible with the spirit of Modern and Enlightenment, the successors of which the Communists sincerely considered themselves? We have to leave aside the consideration of Marx and Engels themselves for the time being, although one mention of the figure of W. Morris, their prominent travel companion and at the same time without five minutes of a traditionalist, would be enough for serious reflection on this topic. In the meantime, let's turn to the figure of V.I. Lenin. A.G. Dugin urged to read Leninism "magically, Eurasianly, eschatologically and geopolitically"[ii]. Unfortunately, this has not yet been done, although there are works that are close to this in some aspects.


But first of all, we would like to turn directly to the clearly underestimated dispute of V.I. Lenin and A.A. Bogdanov in 1908 - 1910. As you know, "Materialism and Empiriocriticism" is in fact, the only philosophical work of Lenin. Bogdanov's answer called "Faith and Science" is much less known. If we consider these two works from the point of view of the traditional worldview, you will find extremely curious moments.

Both opponents were Bolsheviks, Marxists, and feuded with G.E. Plekhanov and Mensheviks. Their economic and political views at the time of the dispute were absolutely the same. Both Lenin and Bogdanov were certainly hostile to such traditional foundations as the monarchy, the Church and especially the people's religiosity. It is curious that they accused each other in almost the same terms of "popovshchina", "fideism" and belief in the lesh and housewives. The more interesting is that the philosophical dispute about makhism made them irreconcilable opponents. To understand the reason for this, it is necessary to answer two questions: what was Lenin's main target in "Materialism and Empiriocriticism" and what Bogdanov considered the main one in Lenin's position. It would seem that the answer to the first question is obvious: Lenin fiercely criticized the Mahists and in general representatives of the "second positivism" of the turn of the XIX-XX centuries from the standpoint of materialism. However, this answer, in fact, does not explain anything and is even simply incorrect. Although Lenin branded the views of Mach, Avenarius, Bogdanov, Bazarov and others with "popovshchina", they themselves had the least tendency to justify historical churches and objective idealism. Remaining positivists, they denied any ontological issues as "metaphysics", in particular, accusing Hegel's dialecticism of mysticism, and many of Marx simply for recognizing the existence of the outside world itself. Lenin gives many indicative quotes in this regard. "Metaphysics is the recognition of objective reality outside the person: spiritualists converge with the Kantians and yumists in such reproaches of materialism," he explains[iii].

It can hardly be accidental that the ideas of empirical criticism and close directions in the early 20th century spread among Western and Russian Social Democrats, especially since it happened under the slogan of greater scientificity. However, this imaginary-non-partisan science turned out to be bourgeois-liberal, which Lenin demonstrated in dozens of examples. Despite all the difference between representatives of empiriocriticism, neo-kantianism (which gave rise to the so-called "ethical socialism" in Germany) and, for example, American pragmatism, they were all united by the recognition of the primacy of the subjective sensory experience of individuals and their totality. In fact, we are talking about a special case of the basic intuition that underlies the entire Western philosophy of modern times, believing first of all in its own self, and then in the existence of the outside world. From Cartesian cogitoergosumk KantuiFihte, and then through machism and pragmatism to postmodernism - this is the road on which the individual I of Western man grew to the whole Universe, making the world an illusion, a set of sensations, a picture in a frame (according to Heidegger). Hence the paradox: any person of traditional societies, not spoiled by post-renaissance philosophy, who believes that the world, being is present before and before himself, the empirical individual, is declared a "naive realist", "metaphysicist" and "mystic", while completely unnatural philosophical constructions are brought to normal. Thus, the main trend of the Western philosophy of the last centuries is subjective idealism, to the limit - solipsism. Starting with the denial of the generally binding traditional metaphysics in favor of the willfulness of the empirical ego, the modern world could come to nothing but solipsism. And here the main watershed passes between subjective and objective idealism, between Hume, Kant, Fichte and Mach, on the one hand, and Plato, Schelling and Hegel, on the other.

As for materialism, as noted, in particular, V.F. Earn and A.F. Losev, the mechanistic materialism of the 18th-19th centuries was only a secondary branch of the Enlightenment, one of the types of philosophical justification of liberal individualism (especially in Locke, Lametri, Diderot), while dialectical materialism is much closer to Hegel's objective idealism, and ultimately to traditional metaphysics. Thus, the main enemy of the traditional worldview is not materialistic teachings, inevitably inconsistent and internally contradictory, especially since it itself can rather be called "sacred materialism", but subjective idealism is the true philosophical base and support of all Modernity, the entire "Enlightenment project". In fact, the ideas of Western philosophers of the XIX-XX centuries, even allegedly "conservative", with such exceptions as Schelling and Heidegger, are purely bourgeois-liberal. Their "protection" of religion, when it is declared a private matter, and therefore permissible (as the German Social Democrats, for example, did in the end - on the basis of the same neo-Kantianism), is absolutely opposite to the traditional worldview, for which only one metaphysics can be true and generally mandatory.

This was brilliantly noticed by A.F. Losev, who wrote: "The first more or less vivid philosophical example of godlessness is, of course, not French materialists. These salon atheists, pompous talkers and gentlemen are a completely harmless creature, not dangerous at all and not afraid of anyone. From the first whip, such small charlatanism is cured to the ground. The believer Descartes and the transcendentalist Kant are much more godless. The whip will not do anything about this godlessness, and if it does, it is only externally and insignificant. Descartes and Kant are the godlessness of thought. That's why, and you have to refute it first of all in thought. <...> Kant... and therefore was one of the brightest exponents of European Satanism of the 17th-18th centuries."[iv].

But this characteristic of the confrontation of the two lines in philosophy can also be applied to the controversy of Lenin and Bogdanov. In fact, in the fundamental dispute about the primacy of the subject and subjective experience in relation to the world, the "materialist" and Marxist Lenin is on the same side with objective idealists, and the "materialist" and Marxist Bogdanov are on the same side with subjective idealists. Again, let's emphasize that Lenin fires almost all his arrows against the solipsist trend of Western philosophy, but which of the traditionalists will not agree with this criticism? What is worth one amazing in accuracy formulation: "But Ernst Mach actually walks naked, because if he does not recognize that the "sensual content" is the objective, regardless of us, existing, reality, then he has one "naked abstract" Self, certainly a large and italic written I = "crazy piano, imagining that it alone exists in the world". If the "sensual content" of our sensations is not the outside world, then nothing exists except this naked I, engaged in empty "philosophical" twists"[v]. Naked, however, not only Mach walks here, but the entire main line of Western philosophy. Lenin cites the indicative opinions of the popular philosophers at that time: "The immediate basis of all this is the spiritual (solypstistic) connection, the central point of which is the individual self (the individual world of representations) with his body. The rest of the world is unthinkable without this I, and I am unthinkable without the rest of the world" (R. Schubert-Zoldern); "Either materialism or solipsism" (R. Willie)[vi]. Regarding the last statement, of course, Lenin slied: he could not help but know that objective idealism is no worse than "materialism" recognizes the existence of the world without any observing empirical individual... But it is impossible not to agree with the following statement: "The "naive realism" of every healthy person who has not visited a madhouse or in science with idealist philosophers is that things, the environment, the world exist regardless of our feeling, from our consciousness, from our self and from the person in general" [vii].

Not limited to the general criticism of the solipsist tendency, Lenin concretized the enemy: it is Kant with his statement about the unknowability of things-in-himself. It came to the point that Lenin declared it shameful for Marxists to refer to Kant, which caused bewilderment of Bogdanov, who recalled that Lenin himself sometimes quoted the Königsberg philosopher. However, the author of "Materialism and Empiriocriticism" emphasized that he criticizes Kant "on the left", and the mahists, who generally deny the existence of things-in-self, - "on the right." But if you look at it, it will be more accurate to call the first position right (as more realistic), and the second - the left. "The very idea of "transcense", i.e. the fundamental line between the phenomenon and the thing in itself, is the nonsense idea of agnostics (including the Yumists and Kantians) and idealists... From the point of view of the same Kantian and Yumist "school wisdom" ... any recognition of the objective reality given to us in the experience is an illegal "transcense," Lenin wrote[viii]. However, if you formulate it a little more precisely, it will become clear that the line of these "agnostics and idealists" is a continuation of the Varlaamism of the XIV century, and therefore, the fight against them in the most unexpected way turned out to be a continuation of Palamism... Unexpectedly, it turned out that at the beginning of the XX century the Russian nameslavs and the atheist Lenin converged in defending the "transcense" against the prevailing philosophical currents. It is important that Lenin also paid attention to the criticism of the Kantian-Machist view of space and time as only subjective forms of organization of sensual experience[ix].

Lenin's target was not only the "pillar of anger of the God-opposed" Kant, but also subjective, "naked" idealism in general, thinking "thought" without a substrate and denying the very existence of economic and social patterns that allegedly humiliate the free will of man[x]. Indeed, it will not be superfluous to recall that all the main arguments of "idealists" in philosophy, both a hundred years ago and now, are aimed at denying determinism and justifying militant voluntarism, the notorious destructive "freedom" (criticism of "historicism" K. Popper is perhaps the most odious and demonstrative example). After all, traditional metaphysics, in its recognition of the laws that are objective and independent of the subject's perception, here, paradoxically again converges with "dialectical materialism". A striking example is the attitude to the laws of nature. Lenin wrote: "The connection (Verknüpfung) is either in things as the "objective law of nature" (which Mach strongly rejects), or is a subjective principle of description." "There is much more sense in the statement that man gives laws to nature than in the reverse statement that nature gives laws to man," the Makhists claimed after the Kantians[xi]. This point of view, which understands laws as an eistemological construction created by people to describe the world, remains dominant in Western philosophy to this day. On the contrary, Lenin's recognition of the existence of objective, independent of human consciousness physical and mathematical laws of nature puts him on a par with the metaphysics of ancient religions, with a two-thousand-year platonic tradition and with all medieval Christian philosophy, at least such a neighborhood was unpleasant to him.

Finally, an important part of Lenin's pathos falls on defending the thesis about the principled achievability of objective and absolute truth, in contrast to the relativism of empirical critics and Bogdanov and their understanding of the "objectivity" of truth only as intersubjectivity, i.e. universal significance. "Subjective belief, not objective truth (Gewißheit) is the only achievable goal of any science," emphasized, for example, G. Kleinpeter with a direct reference to Kant[xii]. How is it similar to the statements of religious modernists of all types about the subjectivity of religious feeling - the statements branded by Julius Evola and Fr. Pavel Florensky! Of course, the Leninist understanding of absolute and objective truth is very different from that that exists in Orthodox, neoplatonic and traditional metaphysics in general. However, it is important that "dialectical materialism" recognizes the possibility that all varieties of "idealistic" (subjectivist, solipsist) philosophy deny. That's why Lenin is almost closer and at least more indulgent to the frank "reactionaries" than to the "machist confused". About such representatives of the middle, liberal line in philosophy, he wrote: "The non-partisan people in philosophy are as hopeless dumbasses as in politics... Non-partisanship in philosophy is only a despicably covered lackey to idealism and fideism" [xiii]. Here, of course, it should be clarified: not before objective, but before subjective idealism - the philosophy of the "autonomous" bourgeois-liberal individual...


So far, it has been more about individual elements in the philosophy of dialectical materialism, bringing it closer to the traditional worldview in opposition to revival-enlightenment subjective idealism. But it is almost more important, not that, but as Lenin wrote in "Materialism and Empiricritism," the very style of his thinking, his arguments (and curses) in polemics. This is what Bogdanov first of all drew attention to, who not accidentally titled his answer "Faith and Science."

Bogdanov's main thesis - and one cannot but agree with him - was that for Lenin Marxism is a subject of religious faith, even a cult, and his thinking is authoritarian in its essence. "Religious thinking is inextricably linked with authoritarian labor relations (leadership - execution or power - submission), from them arose and reflects them. It is characterized by the creation of powerful fetishes and the demand from people of submission, obedience to them... Religious thinking is authoritarian... Religious thinking, at least the object of his faith was "dialectics"... is satisfied only by the unity of verbal formulas... Conservatism of authoritarian thinking is always and everywhere the same in essence," Bogdanov explains[xiv]. Therefore, any disagreement on philosophical issues in the Marxist camp for Lenin was a heresy subject to anathema. The above-mentioned example is characteristic, when it turned out that repeating Kant's words for a Marxist, according to Lenin, is an "unpleasant incident".

Even more surprising is the ensights of Bogdanov, who see in "Materialism and Empiriocriticism" the features that objectively kin Lenin to "reaction" philosophers, even against his desire, seem even. "As for the wording B. Ilyin - absolute nature is expressed in absolute truth, embodying in a number of relative truths that form a gradation of approach to the absolute - then this is a Schellingian formulation," Bogdanov points out indignantly, but for us it looks exactly as a positive recommendation - it is no coincidence that Engels called Schelling "a philosopher in Christ" ... Lenin's passion for the search and affirmation of absolute truth, as well as his unequivocal ban on any research methodology, except Marxist (a ban that became mandatory in the Soviet Union), Bogdanov compared with the philosophy of V.S. Solovyova and N.A. Berdyaev, as well as with medieval Christian metaphysics: "A few years ago, natural science "defended" against me. Berdyaev, now V. does it. Ilyin, both under the banner of the "absolute"... One of the main ideas of Catholicism - "absolute and eternal truth" - he has preserved intact, and protects with true religious diligence"[xv]. Let's remember this unexpected comparison of Leninism with Russian religious philosophy - it will emerge in the future. In general, for Bogdanov, as for the modern man, nothing absolute, and even more so absolute and eternal truth, can exist. Absolute truth, good and beauty for Bogdanov, as well as for some Popper - words from the "reactionary" lexicon.

Bogdanov's second target is realism in the sense of trust in the collective human experience, as discussed above. After all, many thousands of years of experience of mankind is the strongest argument in favor of traditional society and traditional worldview. And although Lenin, of course, denied the existence of the leshy and brownies, trying to attribute it to Bogdanov, he ricocheted this accusation to him. And it should be admitted that Bogdanov was right, pointing out that if we develop the Leninist line, we will certainly come to faith in mermaids and leshs, and to the denial of the heliocentric system of Copernicus[xvi]. Remember this detail, which will be mentioned again below.

Bogdanov's final verdict is so bright and accurate that it makes sense to cite its most important fragments: "A sharp, anti-religious tone, attributing to the hostile side of aspirations for "popovshchina" - and deeply religious thinking, with the cult of "absolute" ... Imagine a man who, thinking religiously, formally accepted the doctrine, deeply hostile to any "fideism". Then he is in-1), creates a cult of his anti-religiousness, which in itself would not be so bad; but at the same time he, - in-2), - all sorts of views with which he does not agree, or does not understand, will consider as the ideas of a hostile sect, as a hostile religion... After a long, unsuccessful struggle, the old world resorted to the last means: he created a vampire in the outward image and likeness of his enemy, and sent him to fight against a young life. The name of this ghost is "absolute Marxism"... In this case, the "absolute" is embodied in the ideas ever and anywhere expressed by Marx and Engels. These are the prophets of absolute truth. And it is quite clear that, as prophets, they should not, cannot say anything wrong"[xvii]. It is difficult to disagree with this conclusion in fact (the same thing was meant by the neo-Kantian F.A. Stepun, who called Lenin "a believer of science"); it is another thing that the assessment of this fact from the point of view of traditionalism should be, on the contrary, positive.

So, not only the Russian "structure" influenced the Marxist "kerigma", creating an archaeomodern hybrid in the Stalinist era, but also the consciousness of Lenin himself was much more archaic than even that of his associates in the revolutionary camp. For Chernov, Struve, even for the Marxists Bogdanov and Bazarov, Marx's teachings was only a good theory that can be criticized and reworked; for Martov and Plekhanov - already a subject of faith, but faith is orthodox, not daring to depart from the letter of the German original. Lenin, on the other hand, brought new tones and new trends to the subject of his fanatical devotion, which largely predetermined his political victory. It is the features of Lenin's philosophy that Bogdanov (also a Bolshevik!) branded as authoritarian and religious in fact, later gave the reason N.A. Klyuev to write about the "Kerzhen spirit."

How aware of this problem? There are only a few works devoted to the similarity of the traditional, archaic-mythological worldview with Leninism - especially in the period after the triumph of the Leninist version of the "diamat" in the 20s over the so-called "mechanists", "tectology" of Bogdanov and the "theory of balance" N.I. Bukharina. We can call the anonymous afterword of some liberals from philosophy to "History of Western Philosophy" by B. Russell, who compared the Leninist statement about the uniqueness of Marxist methodology with the hymns of the Rig Veda, as well as a very remarkable article by such an irreconcilable supporter of the rationalist "kerigma" and a hater of the Russian folk "structure" as V.K. Kantor, who characterizes Bolshevik ideology as a Russian pagan magical cult, essentially related to Orthodox nameslavism (and Orthodoxy for Kantor is also "paganism") [xviii]. But now it is better to point out three specific examples of the striking synch of Soviet Marxism with traditional objective and idealistic philosophizing, more precisely, with the Platonic tradition.


The first example is the doctrine of social formations Fr. Pavel Florensky (which is characteristic, who did not accept February, but accepted October). He did not leave special works on Marxism and did not consider it necessary to use the new Soviet terminology, but his objective proximity to the Marxist-Leninist doctrine of formations was highlighted in detail by S.V. Chesnokov[xix]. Florensky, as you know, taught about the alternation of "authoritarian" and "liberal" formations that roughly correspond to the "ideal" and "sensual" cultures of Pitirim Sorokin. The primitive communal system, feudalism and socialism are examples of "authoritarian" formations, which are characterized, among other things, by the lack of private property, the emphasis on ontological problems in philosophy. "Liberal" or "renaisssant" formations, such as the trade system of Phoenicia, Ancient Greece and the capitalist West, are characterized by political and ideological pluralism, individualism, which determines the role of private property and episteological bias in philosophy. The latter means the subjective-idealistic, solipsist line against which Florensky (but also Lenin) fought all his life.

Florensky defined his own views as "ideal-realism" or "sacred materialism." "Now economic materialism is a matter of the past. He was replaced by the sacred theory," he noted in the same 1923, in which he wrote about the magical meaning of the name Vladimir for the rulers... And in this he simply brought to a logical end those trends that already in 1909 opposed Lenin to the entire world social-democracy, which followed the Machists or neo-Kantians (Bolshevik-Makhist V.A. Bazarov directly called Lenin's philosophy "sacral materialism"!). And can there be a striking coincidence by chance: Bogdanov's predictions that Leninism developed to the limit would lead to the denial of Copernicus's theory and to the belief in the leshs came true literally when in the 20s Florensky openly confessed both the first (returning to the geocentric system in "Imas in Geometry") and the second (showing that it is possible to deny the existence of the forest only on the basis of individualistic cantianism)? Therefore, the words of S.V. are quite fair. Chesnokova: "It seems that the mathematician Florensky with the same absolutely mathematical sequence developed Marx's main theses to the last conclusions." Especially since the bulk of Soviet Marxists did not understand much about this philosophy at all...

It must be said that this desire of "dialectical materialism" to go beyond its own limits, only forcibly restrained by the Soviet regime, did not escape the attention of even such a moderately moderate emigrant philosopher as N.O. Lossky, who wrote in 1934: "Dialectical materialism, when talking about matter or nature as primary reality, generously endows it with qualities and abilities, but it has no right to call it matter. He gives himself the visibility of materialism partly with his terminology, partly by his inconsistent connection with some remnants of the dogmas of genuine materialism, partly through inconsermations and ambiguities... In free thinkers, dialectical materialism would quickly be reborn into some complex system of ideal realism"[xx]. Only such a rebirth was possible, of course, not to Lenin himself, much less to the notary Leninists, but to a few supporters of traditional metaphysics who digested the "diamat"... In part, this rethinking is still a matter of the future.

The most striking example of the synthesis of Marxism-Leninism with objective-idealistic, namely neoplatonic, dialectics, was, of course, A.F. Losev (Andronik Inok). It is well known that after returning from the White Sea Canal, he only "began to use the language of Marxism" without changing his previous beliefs. But in recent years, the question has also been rightly raised that there was something in Marxism itself that made possible its fruitful, albeit strange, use by the greatest Russian philosopher of the XX century.

Already several researchers - like extreme liberals-Westerners N. Prat iS.S. Averintsev, and the ideologist of the so-called "red Eurasianism" R.R. Vakhitov - noted that Losev's very style was initially close to the Bolshevik, with all the cardinal difference in the content of their texts. We can add that the Losev manner of argumentation (and swearing) is also surprisingly similar to the Leninist one. Of paramount importance is the tendency to deduce all the political, social, ideological and economic features of a particular culture or historical period from a single principle - a certain "symbol" of Losev, or, for example, Spengler, and from industrial relations ("primary cell of society") in Marxism. "Losev's thought, precisely as a thought, beyond all circumstances, was obsessed with the imperative of rigid, inexorable unity, according to the law of which the smallest features of the "holistic face" and "worldview style" should be dialectically derived from some original principle; to be derived with the measure of obligation, coercion, which is normal in Euclidean geometry," wrote Averintsev [xxi].

This "monistic style", or "broading of oracles", by the way, has always been hated by liberals, in the very discipline of thought who see the frightened "fascism", and it is no coincidence that Popper in his "Open Society and its enemies" included Hegel, Spengler, Toynbee and Marx (although the latter with reservations) as "oracles" along with Heraclitus, Plato and Aristotle. Indeed, the "monistic" style of thinking, not so pronounced in Marx and Engels themselves, has reached the highest development in Leninism. That is why in the 20s Losev, who in the 20s derived (on the model of Spengler) ancient slavery from the basic "bodily" intuition of the ancient Greeks, in the post-war period it was just as easy to turn over this formula and derive the features of Platonism from the fact of slavery. It was enough for those who understood this to understand what Losev really meant - because the structure of his reasoning, notes N. Prat, remained the same [xxii].

Interestingly, Losev, who remembered the prophecies of K.N. Leontief on socialism as a new feudalism and about the "communist secret adviser" who listened to reports on the observance of the people's posts, already in 1918 noted with satisfaction that the path of violence will inevitably lead the Bolsheviks to monarchism: "Socialism is only possible under monarchism... This, sorry, is religion and ontology"[xxiii]. In his prose of the 30s, there is also a clear approval of the practice of Soviet construction - with all his contempt for the "toxic waste" of Soviet philosophy, according to the mark of the characteristics of A.G. Dugina. "In Losev's legacy there are also openly anti-communist and anti-Soviet maxims... but there are also attempts to reveal the conservative meaning of Soviet civilization... and even direct statements about the inevitability of the victory of collectivist values... all over the world... It is difficult to agree that Losev's "Marxist inserts" were a simple disguise, "Potemkin villages" or a hidden mockery, "ironic Marxism..." writes R.R. Vakhitov[xxiv]. He is etoed by N. Prat: "He [Losev] allows himself to boldly attack the ideology of communism, but can he be called a genuine opponent of communist totalitarianism? In fact, he fully approves of his methods, although he condemns his ideology.

After easily mastering the main works of Marx, Engels and Lenin after the camp, Losev quickly realized that he was a much more consistent Marxist than the confused Marxists themselves and even than Lenin himself, and that he was able to move "dialectical materialism" (eclectic and ridiculous in itself) towards "sacral materialism". The reasons for Losev's position were largely because from his early years to the last days of his life he felt the deepest hatred of the bourgeoisie, liberal individualism and capitalism. The language of Soviet Marxism allowed Losev not to even mask this hatred in the works of different years - although the enemy of the entire Modern project was, of course, on the right, not on the left... Therefore, he directly called himself more Marxist than Marxists, stating that atheism and materialism as such are a bourgeois worldview, and therefore consistent communists should abandon them... Therefore, he, in the end, to the question of the rector of the Moscow State Pedagogical Institute: "Do you still believe in God?" - he replied: "Lenin claimed that the absolute truth exists." Thus, Bogdanov and Bazarov's fears about the authoritarian and religious nature of Lenin's doctrine about the achievability of objective and absolute truth came true...

Let's point out two more most indicative cases when Losev had the opportunity to openly speak out about the similarity of objective-idealistic metaphysics with Marxism. Once he had a chance to reflect on how Vladimir Solovyov would have reated to the victorious dialectical materialism: "If he imagine a miracle that before the full development of Marxism-Leninism in Russia, Solovyov already knew him, then inevitably follows: (1) he could not criticize the dialectical method (since dialectics is the basis of Solovyov's philosophy), but could only approve it; (2) - he could not dispute the theory aimed at criticizing capitalism and the foretold of its death, because the philosopher himself deeply felt the doom and short-livedness of the entire Western, bourgeois-capitalist culture; and, finally, (3) he himself foresaw the onset of a new era after unprecedented world disasters. The only thing that Solovyov would sharply object to in Marxist-Leninist theory, if he really had any acquaintance with him, is against the materialistic understanding of all historical processes and the possibility of a radical socialist revolution... Solovyov could also find positive things in the materialist theory, which we now unconditionally consider alien to him. Let's remember, for example, his thoughts on the high role of matter, his poems addressed to the Lady of the Earth. Again, the same "sacred matter" that the Kantians and Machists were so afraid of! However, it is unlikely that Losev was right here about Solovyov himself - his liberal and humanistic prejudices were too strong, and he spoke disdainful of Marx. But Losev is certainly right that the logically consistent development of the Solovyov guidelines of absolute truth, good and beauty really could not but lead to the bond of the "Solovyovs" of Florensky and Losev with Marxism-Leninism (even if contrary to the desire of Solovyov himself, if he were alive), which Bogdanov, already quoted by us, felt brilliantly in 1910.

The second point we would like to draw attention to here concerns the Marxist interpretation of Platonism. It is no secret that in the state Soviet textbooks of philosophy repeated the old liberal characteristics of Plato's theory of ideas as allegedly hypostatic general concepts (according to E. Zeller). Losev, being in the denial of bourgeois-liberal theories much more consistent than the Marxists themselves, pointed (skillfully using Lenin's statement that intelligent idealism is much better than stupid, i.e. mechanistic, materialism) to the fundamental similarity of Platonism (especially neoplatonism, which received the "vaccination" of Aristotle) with Marxism in the question of unity and interconnection of the material and the ideal - in contrast to all types of anti-traditional subjectivism prevailing in the West, for which, in fact, both the material and the spiritual world is an illusion or the offspring of the thinking individual. R.R. Vakhitov writes: "Marxism gives the usual, maybe not in all its aspects acceptable to the Platonist, but still the answer to the question is central to any version of Platonism... is the question of the unity of the material and the ideal. Marxist reasoning that ideas cannot be explained through ideas alone, they are a reflection of the process of reproduction of real, material life - what is it like a non-specific and completely unconscious development of Plato's dialectics of one and another, matter and ideas from... "Parmenis" and Aristotelian criticism of the separate existence of the ideal?"[ xxv].

This fundamentally important moment, completely independently of Losev, was developed by another philosopher who was formed already in the post-war period, but by some miracle really learned to think contrary to the "toxic waste" producers surrounding him. It's about E.V. Ilyenkov (1924 - 1979), who most thoroughly and deeply substantiated the kinship of Platon's and Lenin's doctrine of the ideal as existing objectively, and not in the heads of individual autonomous individuals, as his opponents, led by D.I. believed. Dubrovsky, in fact, are liberals who mimicized Marxism. To attempts to smuggle philosophical liberalism, Ilyenkov was no less irreconcilable than Losev and Lenin himself. "Ilyenkov was absolutely right when he pointed out that the psychophysiological interpretation of the ideal, which reduces it to the generation of the individual psyche and body, is no other, and the bourgeois interpretation, alien to Marxism and Soviet philosophy," notes R.R. Vakhitov[xxvi]. Instead of the old, derogatory Zeller interpretation of Platonism, which persisted in Soviet textbooks, Ilyenko proposed a fundamentally new one: in his opinion, "Plato - nothing less, almost two thousand years before Marx, discovered public consciousness and depicted it in the form of his supercosmic, supersensual world of eternal, divine ideas."

Ilyenkov has students and just followers, among whom we would like to name the recently deceased Novosibirsk philosopher A.E. Sokolov (1945 - 2009), who in his works synthesized Ilyenkov's legacy with Russian name and critically overestimated Engels' legacy. We dare to say that the untimely deceased Professor Sokolov came close to the traditionalist doctrine of the origin of man and language.


Let's sum up. The main thing that made possible the composition of Marxism-Leninism with traditional objective-idealistic metaphysics is the principled authoritarianism and monistic nature of their style, their orientation towards comprehension, or rather the revelation of absolute truth, as well as the anti-bourgeoisism and anti-individualism inherent in both - in other words, all the main features of "authoritarian", "ideational" (according to P. Sorokin) or "medieval" stages in the development of society. R.R. Vakhitov writes: "According to the true, Orthodox Christianity, a person is all the more a person in the Christian sense, the less he is an individual in the bourgeois sense. The path to the heights of the individual as the Image of God lies through humility, self-restraint, rejection of titanic-liberal freedom. On the contrary, emancipation, the acquisition of self-godied, godless freedom, the transformation into a liberal individual means the destruction of the true personality. That's what Marxism and Orthodoxy echo each other: man is not self-valued here and there, he is only an image, in one case of society, in another - of God" [xxvii].

Of course, in the specific conditions of the Russian archaeomodern, this band could not but take clearly ugly forms. And yet we can say that the extremes of Leninism and Orthodox proto-traditionalism of Florensky and Losev converged in a common denial of the spirit of Modern and the Enlightenment project, as the Makhists foreseed. "Marxism more radically denies religion and traditional values than liberalism... But that's why the transition from Marxism to Orthodoxy is easier than from liberalism to Orthodoxy. For a person who is already accustomed to seeing in himself not the center of the universe, but the center of social forces, the microsociety, an obedient agent of historical law, it is easier to recognize himself as the image of God and the executor of the Divine Providence," points out R.R. Vakhitov, comparing such a transition with a sharp and paradoxical transition from a tyrannical policy to a seemingly opposite Platonic ideal state. Vakhitov also draws attention to the factual side of the matter: "Only philosophers who were Marxists switched to indigenous, harsh and majestic church Orthodoxy, and not just passed, but really churched, many even became priests and died a martyr's death for their faith. As for liberals of the Western, European model like Milyukov, for them Orthodoxy remained an ethnographic phenomenon, which they tolerated only because of their belonging to Russian culture. If they were more consistent and radical, they would prefer pink, general humanist Protestantism to Orthodoxy. Maybe there is something about Marxism that favors the conversion to church and orthodox Christianity and what is completely non-existent in liberalism? And perhaps it is thanks to this - no, not a coincidence: there are too many deep differences between Byzantine-Moscow Orthodoxy and German "scientific socialism"! - but the attraction of opposites, there was such a passionate struggle between them" [xxviii].

And yet - isn't Vakhitov's conclusion that "Marxism, in its essence, was and remains the most impressive and profound attempt to overcome liberal anthropocentrism within the framework of Western secular culture too idealized and "smoothed"... Marxism is a legitimate ally of the Orthodox philosophy of unity in the fight against the modern expansion of Anglo-Saxon liberal currents (and, above all, positivism) into the Russian philosophical space, which threatens to end the unique face of the Russian intellectual tradition" [xxix]? It is impossible to deny the damage that the Bolshevik rule has done to Russia in general and Russian thought in particular. The catastrophe of urbanization and the destruction of shrines are the same facts as the fact that Florensky was shot through the fault of the Soviet authorities, Losev was blind in the camp, and Ilyenkov was brought to suicide in "stagnant" times. "No regime tolerates being fully understood and thought through. And in general, no one and nothing in the world likes it. And the philosopher just wants to understand everything," said the character of the Losev story...[xxx]

But we can also remember the obvious material damage caused to the Russian people by repeated Mongol invasions during the XIII century. Nevertheless, as the Eurasian P.N. wrote. Savitsky, "the happiness of Russia is great, that at the moment when, due to internal decay, it was supposed to fall, it went to the Tatars, and no one else" [xxxi]. After all, with the European or, for example, Turkish conquest, Russia could then simply not survive. Therefore, we can say: Russia's happiness is that at the time of disintegration and decay by the autumn of 1917, it went to Lenin with his "Materialism and Empiriocriticism" and to no one else (including among the Bolsheviks themselves). And isn't there any perverted, but symbolism in the fact that if we consider the leader of the Bolsheviks as a philosopher, then until 2006 he was the only philosopher who had monuments in Russia? After all, as the same R.R. noted. Vakhitov, "let's imagine that in the USSR would be the state philosophy of positivism - not such a hypothetical case, let's remember that this was the case in Brazil - what would the dialectist Losev do then? After all, Marxism allows at least to set philosophical problems, to talk about the dialectics of essence and phenomenon, about the hierarchy and unity of the universe, about the phenomenon of the ideal, but for positivism all this is nothing more than a pseudo-problem..."[xxxii].

So, after all, "there is in Lenin the Kerzhen spirit, the hegumensky shout in the decrees," although it must be honestly admitted that not only Kerzhensky and that Leninism itself is, of course, not traditional metaphysics and not what we need. "Dialectical materialism" was nothing more and no less than a chance that could or not be used. The experience of recent years shows that modern orthodox Marxists-Leninists cannot and do not want to be allies of Eurasianism and traditionalism and quite often take the side of Russia's enemies. And this means that only the experience of Leninism, reinterpreted and reworked almost beyond recognition in the spirit of traditionalist metaphysics, can and should be useful to us.


[i] Dugin A.G. Lenin is a red avatar of anger //

[ii] Ibid.

[iii] Lenin V.I. (Ilyin V.) Materialism and empirical criticism. Any ed. Foreword; Instead of introduction; sections 1.1, 2.1, 5.4.

[iv] Losev A.F. Additions to the "Dialectics of the Myth" // Losev A.F. The dialectics of myth. M., 2001. S. 262.

[v] Lenin V.I. Decree. op. Section 1.1.

[vi] Ibid. Sections 1.4, 4.3.

[vii] Ibid. Section 1.3

[vii] Ibid. Sections 2.3, 3.3.

[ix] Ibid. Section 3.5.

[x] Ibid. Section 5.3, 6.1.

[xi] Ibid. Sections 3.3, 3.4.

[xii] Ibid. Sections 2.4, 3.3, 4.4.

[xiii] Ibid. Sections 5.5, 6.5.

[xiv] Bogdanov A.A. Faith and Science (On the book V. Ilyina "Materialism and Empiriocriticism") // Bogdanov A.A. The fall of the great fetishism (Modern crisis of ideology). M., 1910. Sections 1, 8, 13.

[xv] Ibid. Sections 5, 6, 15.

[xvi] Ibid. Section 3.

[xvii] Ibid. Sections 7, 24, 25.

[xviii] Kantor V.K. Florensky, Stepun and Bolshevik nameslavy // On the way to the synthetic unity of European culture: Philosophical and theological heritage of P.A. Florensky and modernity. Moscow, 2006.

[xix] Chesnokov S.V. Creative overcoming of Marxism //

[xx] Lossky N.O. Dialectical materialism in the USSR. Paris, 1934. S. 66.

[xxi] Averintsev S.S. "Worldview style": approaches to the phenomenon of Losev // Questions of philosophy. 1993. №9.

[xxii] Prat N. Losev and totalitarianism // Forum of Contemporary Eastern European History and Culture. 2005. №2.

[xxiii] Losev A.F. I'm exiled to the 20th century... Vol.2. M., 2002. S. 468–469.

[xxiv] Vakhitov R.R. Losev and Marxism //

[xxv] Ibid.

[xxvi] Vakhitov R.R. Platonism in the mirror of Soviet Marxism (E.V. Ilyenkov about Plato's "ideas") //

[xxvii] Vakhitov R.R. Marxism and Orthodox philosophy: the attraction of opposites //

[xxviii] Ibid.

[xxix] Ibid.

[xxx] Taho-Godi A.A. Losev. M., 2007. S. 192.

[xxxi] Savitsky P.N. Steppe and sedenity // On the paths. Approval of Eurasians. Kn.2. Berlin, 1922.