In the era of scientific and technological progress, which is repeatedly causing more and more attacks on religious, mystical, idealistic world, the last argument in defense of religion is the assertion that religion teaches good that only she carries the weight of moral ideals, that without religion society will freak slide into the abyss of Vice and moral degradation. The emphasis is on the following thesis: religion is the basis of a certain eternal human morality. Even argue that the Communists, who struggled with religion, allegedly were forced to recognize the value of moral and ethical attitudes of Christianity, veiled very sloppy about these settings in “the Moral code of the Builder of communism.” The so-called “Communists” in the person of Mr. Zyuganov even recognize it. So.
Will look for a start, what is morality. Morality is a way of orientation in the system of social relations, and it directly depends on what kind of system of relations (relations of ownership, interaction, distribution and exchange) puts forward the society. The desire of individuals, not the dictates of the deity, and the specific production practices specific human society is the basis of formation of a particular moral system.
For example, a narrow industrial relations of the tribal system was based on the fact that the only person of your kind can be perceived. All the others not related to race, are the enemies. They are not subject to any moral principles, they act as hostile forces of the world, such as wild animals or natural disasters.
The slave system that destroyed the closed Patriarchal community, brought to life another morality. Now in the category of “bad people” were put only one public class – the class of slaves, for whom even the most enlightened figures of the era did not recognize the right to be called human beings. A slave was a “talking tool”, a live thing, the property of the master.
The transition to feudalism was reflected in the concept of universal equality, but with one caveat. All people are equal before God, but here on earth, they must comply with them established the same hierarchy of relations of personal dependence. Attempt to exit this system was perceived as an attack on the divine will.
The capitalist mode of production, with its economic system of entrepreneurship and free competition, broke the hierarchical morality of the feudal middle ages, giving man a free will, independent and formally equal rights.
Thus, we see that even the perception of the person changed depending on which system of production prevailed in the society. Otherwise it could not be. For if in the heyday of slavery was recognized as “human” status of a slave, it would undermine the very system of exploitation of slave labor. If the feudal system recognized the free will of the farmer (primary producer), this would undermine the system of enslavement and feudal dependence. If the young capitalism refused to consider man as the center of the world and put public interests above individual interests, this would lead to the cessation of development of the capitalist economy and, consequently, the decline of the whole economy. That is, morality that sanctifies and justifies that system of social and economic relations that exists in this moment. The transition to a new economic system entails the establishment of a new morality meets the new relations of production, interaction, distribution and so on.
“Therefore, there is no “eternal”, “universal” morality?” – the reader will ask. Not quite.
The course of historical development shows that man is man only as a result of interaction with other people. Only the preservation of human society as a whole guarantees individuals the possibility of human existence. In the absence of society and social production, people would never be able to emerge from brutal savagery. With the destruction of society, destruction of social production (in fact, the foundations of the society), would have ended and the history of man.
The necessity of preservation and development of society as such and corresponds to the so-called “universal morality”, passing a red thread through the history of mankind. Features of such a universal morality are, for example, different expressions of empathy (compassion, solidarity, the protection of the weak, help the patient), which in the framework of biological evolution and social development are key to the preservation of society and, thus, save the human species. And at each new, higher stage of human development, that human morality is revealed increasingly.
“Out,” — concluded the reader — “religion is indeed the bearer of “universal morality”?”. No, it is not so.
In a society divided into antagonistic classes, there is no single “universal” morality. All morality is the moral power of the moment class, which, betraying their own class interests for the interests of the whole society, inculcates in the masses a morality that supports and reproduces the socio-economic system, which is the basis of economic and political domination of this class. So, the class morality of the slaveholders were dominant for all classes of slave society. In particular, for a class of slaves who meekly endured the operation, convinced of its utter moral justice. Feudal lords exploited the peasants were firmly convinced of the rightness of their position. Workers of capitalist enterprises also try to assure the fairness of the system, where a very enterprising and talented people (the owner of the means of production) in the framework of free contract fairly allocates the labor is less diligent, and less talented people (workers).
Religion is organically linked with the exploiting classes, it sanctifies oppression and comforting the oppressed in the name of peace of the oppressor. And it also is one of powerful tools the plantation society of the morality of the ruling class, issued by religious leaders for “universal,” “eternal morality”.
For example, let’s consider the notorious Christian 10 commandments, being the assurances of priests and fanatics, “universal” moral beacon for all times.
On closer examination it turns out that the first 4 commandments (I’m your Lord, do not make yourself an idol do not take the name of God in vain, honor the Sabbath) is generally irrelevant to morality have not. These are the rules of a religious cult, not relationships between people.
The fifth commandment (honor your father and mother), while it refers to moral precepts, but has a distinct class character. The essence of this rule is to perpetuate the “law of the fathers,” conservation mode of operation (at the time of creation of the slave, and then applied to the feudal and capitalist oppression).
8th, 9th and 10th commandment (do not steal, do not bear false witness, thou shalt not covet the house/wife/slave/livestock middle) definitely govern the relationship of private property antagonistic class (and therefore transient, temporary). And, tellingly, “the wife” is mentioned on a par with a slave, cattle and a house that tells about the degree of humanity in the Judeo-Christian God, the woman considers the same property, like cattle.
Only a sixth (do not kill), and, at a stretch, the seventh (thou shalt not commit adultery) the commandments can really be classified as “universal”.
In the Islamic Surah “the Night journey” there are 10 verses, similar to the Judeo-Christian Decalogue, in which the same “universal morality” is inferior to the commandments governing moral and ethical behavior in antagonistic class society (only two of the verse, — thou shalt not kill children and do not commit adultery, correspond to an “eternal morality”).
Basic Buddhist code of Pancasila (“the Five sacred commandments”) in the same way, along with the “universal human requirements” (not to kill and not to commit adultery) raises ethical requirements relevant class society (the rejection of theft, fraud and drunkenness).
What conclusion can be here to do?
The class character of a particular system of morality does not exclude the presence of elements of human morality. It is impossible to consider class morality as a closed sphere, independent of other moral systems. On the contrary, class and human morality are in close dialectical relation, and the more progressive class, the wider it is the development of the whole society, the more morality it presents the universal elements. And Vice versa: the more the interests of the class conflict with the interests of the development of the whole society, the less human elements contains such a class morality.
Replacement of some other moral systems does not happen automatically. The crisis of the mode of production unable to meet the needs of society, brings to life the birth of a new oppositional morality of the oppressed classes, aimed at destroying obsolete relations and the formation of new relationships. In the framework of the class struggle a new morality becomes a tool of transformation of the world, the ideological basis of the formation of a new mode of production.
So, feudal morality, to recognize human equality and respect for the work, was far more progressive than the moral of dilapidated slave system, a man who despised the work and considered him an inheritance only “bad people”-slaves. Bourgeois morality, which blew the stationary system of hierarchical subordination and freeing private initiative from class-corporate chains, was much more progressive than the outmoded feudal morality, which became a brake of development of human society. Today, when capitalist production that gave rise to bourgeois morality, does not meet the requirements of social development, in the depths of production comes a new, more progressive morality – a revolutionary morality of the proletariat.
Proletarian morality, formed in the course of practical activity of the working class and the strengthening within him of the class struggle, contains much more elements of universal morality, than any other moral concept of the past. Reactionaries, ideologues of a decaying capitalist system, understand it and trying to delay his death struggle with the new morality.
For example, as mentioned in the beginning, they claim that “the Moral code of the Builder of communism”, expressing in General terms the main moral and ethical attitudes of the proletariat, written off the Bible, because the Communists are not able to give the public any new moral guidelines other than those already contained in the religious Scriptures. Therefore, the Communist idea is useless to society. It brings only destruction and chaos, and then returns to what what was trying to lead the society – religious “universal” norms. So, the conclusion about the irrelevance of the Communist revolution suggests itself.
It is easy to see that, taking the moral precepts of universal plan formulated by the mankind for past history (which indeed are present in virtually all religions), the reactionaries don’t notice other universal principles first manifested in the revolutionary morality of the proletariat. Principles which are contrary to the class morality of the oppressors, designed to keep the masses in line and maintain the system of exploitation. Principles which have no analogies in the religious Scriptures, because these principles undermine the very system of exploitation that are key to the existence of any religion.
So, instead of religious fatalism and a passive adaptation to an unjust world, proletarian morality preaches active transformation of reality on the basis of studying of laws of development. Instead of trusting in the wisdom of the deity, which in due time will destroy evil, proletarian morality requires intolerance of injustice and all social ills. Instead of self-abasement of the person of the proletarian morality preaches faith in their own strength and sense of personal dignity of the worker. Instead of the militant individualism of absolutely any religion, which provides solely for personal salvation, proletarian morality extols collectivism as the key to the liberation and development of society and, ultimately, of each person separately. Instead pseudohuman, through false “universal love” proletarian morality of hatred for the conscious and active enemies of society.
Thus, no Communist “plagiarism” moral religious principles of the question. On the contrary, the revolutionary proletarian morality of the broader reveals universal moments, leaving behind all sorts of religious nonsense of the past centuries. This is due to the fact that the proletariat, in contrast to the exploiting classes of the past, needs neither hypocrisy nor self-deception nor in a mystical justification of their struggle. The proletariat is not intended to become a new exploiting class, deluding the masses with mystical nonsense. The proletariat honest with myself and with society, he explicitly States about the necessity of the liberation of humanity, about the need to destroy the division of society into classes as such (including the elimination of the proletarian class), and for this practical tasks of the working class requires a strictly scientific approach, requires liberation of morality from illusions, prejudices and preconceptions of the past, hindering community development requires the formation of real, not imaginary values of life.
Of course, proletarian morality is not “universal”, because in a class society, as has been said, no single universal morality cannot be and speeches. However, proletarian morality is preceded by the formation of a truly human morality, since the proletariat appears as the last class in history, the logic of which is designed to destroy the classes.
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