The bible of modern community activists—Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals—contains a surprising yet highly illustrative dedication, a paean to Satan. And as unorthodox as this move might seem, it is actually a Marxist trope to dedicate oneself to the Devil. In fact, many early socialists did this before Alinsky was born. And the depth of seriousness and feeling is not to be doubted. Satan is highly regarded by some socialists. For example, Time magazine reports one socialist exclaiming:
“I thank Satan,” exclaimed the Socialist delegate, “that I have lived to see the day when the great popular masses united. I beg Satan to give me six months more, so that I shall see the Front in operation.” The author of this sardonic invocation was bent, shriveled old Comrade Corradetti, a devout diabolist from Benevento; he was addressing the 26th National Congress of the Italian Socialist Party in Rome’s new Cinema Astoria.Could Karl Marx and other foundational socialists, like Proudhon and Bakunin, have had a soft-spot for Lucifer? Would it even make sense to suggest anti-religious, godless persons could still salute Satan? This article is a brief investigation into whether socialism has any claim to fame as an ideology of not just atheists, but even diabolically minded people.
I. History of Socialism
The earliest socialists were radicals who sought to overturn the established order. The essential idea motivating socialism was a rejection of private property. This is perhaps the greatest claim in the history of leftism, the idea that private property is taken from the poor, by definition. Or, quoting Pierre-Joseph Proudhon—“Property is Theft.” New World Encyclopedia describes the rise of early socialism,
The term “socialism” was first used in the context of early nineteenth-century western European social critics as mass society was beginning to develop with the modern bureaucratic state and the mass production of goods through industrialization. The ideas were rooted in doctrines and social experiments associated with British and French thinkers. These theorists advocated reforms such as the equal distribution of wealth and the transformation of society into small communities in which private property was to be abolished.
II. Foundations of SocialismHighly influential political scientist Eric Voegelin describes the medieval foundations of early socialism. He states that Joachim of Flora, a rogue priest, created the archetype society which all future socialist writers would cite. Joachim broke history into three parts—the times of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Joachim’s influence on socialism cannot be overestimated. Marx ended his revolution with benevolent Anarchy, where the State fades away and all people live in harmony, sharing everything and fighting over nothing, in a communist paradise. This is an exact humanistic replica of Joachim’s paradise on earth created after the Church fades away and all humans interact directly with God.
Such writers as Frenchman Saint-Simon and his lieutenant—the deranged August Comte—moved this dream from being a religious paradise to wholly secular, devoted to science. Marx, highly influenced by these French socialists, accepted their take on Joachim’s Kingdom of God on earth, and made his third-period into an anti-religious, godless heaven. And from there comes the inevitable anti-Christian maneuver to salute Satan for rejecting God and founding his own kingdom upon the embers of the Garden of Eden.
III. Satan & SocialismIt might seem absurd to the average person that the founders of socialism and Marxism—which ostentatiously discarded religion, in the most dramatic manner possible, would invoke Satan. After all, the idea of a devil is hardly intelligible without an accompanying God to animate the story.
Yet, seen from another angle, Satan is a perfect symbol of the mission of socialism, Marxism and Fascism—to remake the world of mankind without any reference to God. Further, in reading Saul Alinsky’s dedication to his book, we are not observing a bizarre anomaly, but instead a well-established early socialist fixture—the rebellion of creation against God.
A. Socialist Satan-BoostersA few highly influential early socialist writers shall suffice in understanding the stunning pro-Satan tissue from which socialism arose.
1. Mikhail Bakunin: We Must Awaken the DevilMikhail Aleksandrovich Bakunin (1814-1876) , founder of Russian Nihilism, was born in Tvar, 150 miles northwest of Moscow. He joined the army, then left to pursue a degree in philosophy. He described Marx’s beloved Hegelian political theory as the “Algebra of Revolution.” Bakunin hated religion, saying “Socialists recognize each other by the words, ‘In the name of the one to whom a great wrong has been done’...”. He was determined to change the world through radical politics. Says one writer,
Bakunin was a highly prolific theorist and feared agitator who spent his life running from the authorities. He was prosecuted in absentia and sentenced to Siberian hard labor. Bakunin was deported from France to Russia and made a surprise confession to Tsar Nicholas I. Bakunin admitted, “There was in my character a radical defect; Love for the fantastic, for out-of-the-way, unheard of adventure, for undertakings which open up an infinite horizon and whose end no man can foresee.”Bakunin’s Confession was no exaggeration, he really did have a colossal problem with authority figures—starting with God. Examine the following quotes he delivers on the topic:
The idea of God implies the abdication of human reason and justice; it is the most decisive negation of human liberty and necessarily ends in the enslavement of mankind both in theory and practice…Unless, then, we desire the enslavement and degradation of mankind…we may not, must not make the slightest concession to God. He who desires to worship God must harbour no childish illusions about the matter, but bravely renounce his liberty and humanity. (Federalism, Socialism, and Anti-Theologism)From his book God and the State, we have the following anti-religious gems:
Jehovah, of all the gods adored by men, was certainly the most jealous, the most vain, the most ferocious, the most unjust, the most bloodthirsty, the most despotic, and the most hostile to human dignity and liberty.And Bakunin also wrote this:
The Evil One is the satanic revolt against divine authority, revolt in which we see the fecund germ of all human emancipation, the revolution. Socialists recognize each other by the words “In the name of the one to whom a great wrong has been done.” Satan [is] the eternal rebel, the first freethinker and the emancipator of worlds. He makes man ashamed of his bestial ignorance and obedience; he emancipates him, stamps upon his brow the seal of liberty and humanity, in urging him to disobey and eat of the fruit of knowledge.
In this revolution we will have to awaken the Devil in the people, to stir up the basest passions. Our mission is to destroy, not to edify. The passion of destruction is a creative passion.
2. Pierre Joseph Proudhon: Come, Satan, Come…Considered the “Father of Anarchism,” Proudhon was a French thinker who lived from 1809-1865. Born to humble circumstances, Proudhon became a well-known French social theorist by the 1840s. Anarchy is technically the absence of law, but also the idealized final phase of Marxism. Proudhon taught “anarchy is order” and borrowed J.J. Rousseau’s belief that man in his natural state is good, but institutions are bad. One writer describes him,
Proudhon was the leading left intellectual in France or for that matter, all of Europe, far surpassing Marx’s notoriety or Bakunin’s. He was among the inventors of socialism, along with Marx, Bakunin, Engles, etc. Of these, Proudhon had the profoundest effect upon the workers’ movement in the 19th century.And like many post-French Revolutionary Parisians, Proudhon was of a decidedly anti-clerical bent. He vigorously opposed the Church, and even went so far as to write panegyrics to Satan. The following quotes are from his writings, which begins with this horrific broadside launched against God:
And for my part I say: The first duty of man, on becoming intelligent and free, is to continually hunt the idea of God out of his mind and conscience. For God, if he exists, is essentially hostile to our nature, and we do not depend at all upon his authority. We arrive at knowledge in spite of him, at comfort in spite of him, at society in spite of him; every step we take in advance is a victory in which we crush Divinity. I shall purify myself, idealize my being, and become the chief of creation, the equal of God. By what right should God still say to me: Be holy, for I am holy? Lying spirit, I will answer him, imbecile God, your reign is over; look to the beasts for other victims. For God is stupidity and cowardice; God is hypocrisy and falsehood; God is tyranny and misery; God is evil.Proudhon was not content to simply anathematize God, but also heaped up praise for Satan:
Come, Satan, come, thou the calumniated of priests and of kings! Let me embrace thee, let me press thee to my bosom! Long is it that I have known thee, and long hast thou known me! Thy works, O blessed one of my heart! not always are they beautiful and good; but they alone give a meaning to the universe, and save it from absurdity. What would man be without thee? A beast.While some explain the preceding passage as a simple literary allusion used to make a point, one could fairly answer that it simply does not matter whether Proudhon was a biblical literalist, or symbolist. Because he clearly rejects God’s essence and embraces that of Satan. In doing so, he discards what is arguably the best to embrace the spirit of rebellion, chaos, ultra-humanism, and revolution. Now who will defend his philosophy, even there is no real worship there?
3. Karl Marx: With Satan I Have Struck My DealThe anti-religious and devil saluting done by Karl Marx has been noted previously in the essay Socialism’s God—Karl Marx: Was He Stupid, Insane…or Possessed? Many instances are cited in this article. But a few examples of his notorious statements are needed to prove the point. Pastor Richard Wurmbrand‘s Marx and Satan is a book claiming Marx was an unambiguous follower of the devil. After a nominally Christian childhood, Karl Marx spent formative years of his life writing anti-God screeds, including encomiums dedicated to the devil. In a poem called “The Player,” Marx wrote:
The hellish vapors rise and fill the brain,Karl’s father knew of his son’s fixation on Satan and it worried him. His father wrote in a letter: “Only if your heart remains pure and beats humanly and if¬†no demon is able to alienate your heart from better feelings, only then will I be happy.” Marx was close friends with Satan-praising people. Karl admitted in his writings his goal was power, not helping people. Fifth. Marx and all the other socialists admitted to hating God and religion. Finally, virtually all of Marxism is the total opposite of the Bible.
Till I go mad and my heart is utterly changed.
See this sword? The prince of darkness sold it to me.
For me he beats the time and gives the signs.
Ever more boldly I play the dance of death.
Says one writer, “Marx wrote in The Communist Manifesto that his aim was the abolition not only of all religions, but also of all morals, which would make everything permissible.”
Consider the craziness of Marx’s comments, in his poem “The Pale Maiden”:
Thus heaven I’ve forfeited,
I know it full well.
My soul, once true to God,
Is chosen for hell.
IV. Marxism v. the Ten CommandmentsA. Fascinatingly, Marxism, socialism, Fascism, communism and all leftist ideologies completely reject all Ten Commandments, as listed in Exodus 20. Consider:
- ”You shall have no other gods before Me.” Since Marxism rejects religion and God Himself, everything therefore comes before God.
- ”You shall not make yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything in heaven or earth.” Communist countries are famous for creating huge personality cults which included ever-present pictures and posters of the current leader, a godlike-man.
- ”You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.” As seen in this article, communists specialized in insulting God and religion.
- ”Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.” There were no holy days in communist countries, and the people were routinely overworked, often to death. Further, real churches were destroyed, so none worshiped God there Sundays.
- ”Honor your father and your mother.” Families had no rights under the communist law and the State took the role of Fathers. Further, families were turned against one another by the need to gain by informing on each other.
- ”You shall not murder.” At least 150 million innocent people were murdered last century by communist regimes.
- ”You shall not commit adultery.” The right to reproduce was owned by the State, which could dissolve marriage at will. Further, Marxist ethics are non-existent. So all things were acceptable.
- ”You shall not steal.” The entire economic system of Marxism and socialism is based upon theft.
- ”You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.” One of the accepted ways of getting ahead in Marxist countries was lying about your neighbors to the authorities.
- ”You shall not covet your neighbor’s things.” Socialism is based upon coveting other people’s stuff and nothing else.
ConclusionSaul Alinsky’s book Rules for Radicals, A Practical Primer for Realistic Radicals, contains this bizarre dedication:
Lest we forget at least an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical: from all our legends, mythology, and history (and who is to know where mythology leaves off and history begins—or which is which), the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom—Lucifer.But now we can see that instead of this sentiment being a strange anomaly, it actually fits into exactly the history of socialism. This in turn can only mean that Marxism fits within an atheistic and even satanic view of the world. We can illustrate this by quoting Christ’s description of Satan in John 8:44:
You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.In John 10:10, Christ also said of Satan, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
If stealing, killing and destroying represents Satan on earth, then socialism must be devilish because that is all Marxists seem to understand once they get in power. Satan must have loved the old USSR, but he’s currently making a move to establish Russia in America.