A Non-Marxist’s Marx

MarxKarl Marx (1818-1883)

May 5 is Karl Marx’s Birthday.
In USA, practically nobody knows Marx, outside of the academia. In India, corporate powers have done their best to ridicule this great philosopher. And in this era of Post-Truth or Post-Rationalism, curiosity, let alone studied admiration, is a thing of the past.
Communists in power, through their inefficient, violent and corrupt administrations, have also contributed greatly to people’s misunderstanding. Joseph Stalin is an example. Stalin in Soviet Union had undone what the Bolshevik Revolution achieved, under the leadership of Lenin. The Gang of Four and Deng Xiaoping had undone what Mao achieved in China.
Even though I am not a Marxist, on many of his analyses, I feel as if he is speaking on my behalf. Media would not want us to know about them.
Marx Quote #1. — “You are horrified at our intending to do away with private property. But in your existing society, private property is already done away with for nine-tenths of the population; its existence for the few is solely due to its non-existence in the hands of those nine-tenths.” (From “The Communist Manifesto,” 1848).
Marx Quote #2. — “In every stock[market] swindle every one knows that some time or other the crash must come, but every one hopes that it may fall on the head of his neighbor, after he himself has caught the shower of gold and placed it in safety.” (From “Capital: Critique of Political Economy,” 1867).
Marx Quote #3. — “If the laborer consumes his disposable time for himself, he robs the capitalist.” (From “Capital”).
Marx Quote #4. — “Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions…” (From the “Introduction to the Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right,” 1843).
Marx Quote #5. — “If anything is certain, it is that I myself am not a Marxist.” (Quoted by Friedrich Engels, in a letter to Eduard Bernstein, 1882).
VERY ENLIGHTENING.
Know this great man who revolutionized human history, on behalf of the have-nots. Labor unions, anti-war movements, feminist movements — all the progressive struggles can find their recent roots in the philosophies of Marx and Engels.
In the 19th century, in the era of European enlightenment, Marx, Darwin and Freud were perhaps the three most notable personalities. We owe so much to them.
Sincerely,
Partha Banerjee
Brooklyn, New York
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It Rains. My Memories Mushroom.

Mushroom3Rain has a lot to do with my memories. My pleasant memories.

I promised to my family, friends and well-wishers that I’d be writing about some of my most wonderful memories — to pull myself out of this depressing time with the global war, economic tyranny, worker deaths and all. We need to talk about the good times God has blessed us with, and not just the horrid times Satan has thrown at us.

Karl Marx, Engels and Hegel and such philosophers would perhaps call this continuous conflict between the good and the bad as proof of dialectical materialism, but even without being a Marxist, I can definitely vouch that they are right: this lifelong conflict between God’s paintbrush and Satan’s smudge is that dialectics — of materialism or not. It could well be a fierce fight between spirituality of the soul and dark devilish doom.

Robert Louis Stevenson many years ago showed us how in the human mind, such a major fight goes on between Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. He made the hideous Hyde the ultimate victor. I’m not so sure I want to look at life that way, even though we have an ever-increasing, zillion reasons to want to believe that is the case, especially with the rise of a new, tyrannical Roman Empire.

Even though I express pessimism from time to time, I simply do not want to leave this world with the hideous Hyde having that horrendous howl.

So, when it rains, I especially reminisce my pleasant memories. It works as therapy no clinical psychologist can buy.

Having come from Bengal, where monsoon has always mushroomed our famed poetry, rain automatically turns on my memory switch. I read poetry. Think poetry. Translate poetry. Sing my favorite monsoon songs of Tagore and Nazrul Islam.Mushroom2

And then, more pleasant memories well up. Memories rush in like a pleasant, soul-soothing, mind-drenching rain shower.

Memories spring up like monsoon mushrooms sprouting randomly, in all unpredictable corners. From all unpredictable facets of life.

Pleasant memories bring back life. Wonderful memories kill off death, destruction and doom.

My Dr. Jekyll emerges as the ultimate victor.

Let’s share our beautiful memories.

Sincerely Writing,

Partha

(Writing from Chicago today. It’s raining here.)

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