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Author Topic:   Hitler, Evolution, and Christianity
robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 106 of 146 (218123)
06-19-2005 8:12 PM
Reply to: Message 105 by ringo
06-19-2005 6:03 PM


Re: Hitler's "Christianity"
Who said Hitler was a Christian? My position is that Hitler abused Christianity just as he abused science. He certainly didn't act like a Christian, but he didn't act like he knew anything about science either.

Jar said it, not you. He was basing it on quotes he got from Hitler's speeches. I had doubts.

What concerns me is that you seem to de-emphasize Christianity and over-emphasize science as Hitler's tool. I don't think the common people at that time had the knowledge or interest in science for it to have been an effective tool.

Hitler used Christianity sometimes, but I think that mostly he used the idea that "Jewish Marxism" and "Jewish democracy" were destroying the country. Whenever he used Christianity, it was a bizarre sort of idea, like that Jesus died to save the world from Jewish finance.

He appealed to racist ideas--that the Aryan race was superior but was being tricked by inferior races. His nationalism was racist in nature.

So, no, he did not use "science" per se. But at the bottom of Nazi ideology is this "survival of the fittest" idea--applied to races.

I think that identifying as precisely as possible the main ideas of Nazi ideology is important not merely from the standpoint of purely historical curiosity (although there's nothing wrong with that), but also from the standpoint of current and future politics. This sort of thing could arise again, and it may look like something quite different from Nazism but will actually be the same thing.

There are dangers in religion.

But there are also dangers in science (I mean the misuse of science).

I still think that the first half of the 20th century was the high point in the prestige of science.

This message has been edited by robinrohan, 06-19-2005 07:14 PM


This message is a reply to:
 Message 105 by ringo, posted 06-19-2005 6:03 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 108 by ringo, posted 06-19-2005 11:18 PM robinrohan has responded

  
robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 107 of 146 (218138)
06-19-2005 9:53 PM


What Hitler planned to do to Christianity
He was planning to exterminate it:

The evil that's gnawing our vitals is our priests, of both creeds. I can't at present give them the answer they've been asking for, but it will cost them nothing to wait. It's all written down in my big book. The time will come when I'll settle my account with them, and I'll go straight to the point. I don't know which should be considered the more dangerous : the minister of religion who play-acts at patriotism, or the man who openly opposes the State. The fact remains that it's their manœuvres that have led me to my decision. They've only got to keep at it, they'll hear from me, all right. I shan't let myself be hampered by juridical scruples. Only necessity has legal force. In less than ten years from now, things will have quite another look, I can promise them. We shan't be able to go on evading the religious problem much longer. If anyone thinks it's really essential to build the life of human society on a foundation of lies, well, in my estimation, such a society is not worth preserving. If, on the other hand, one believes that truth is the indispensable foundation, then conscience bids one intervene in the name of truth, and exterminate the lie.

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 16333
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 108 of 146 (218145)
06-19-2005 11:18 PM
Reply to: Message 106 by robinrohan
06-19-2005 8:12 PM


Re: Hitler's "Christianity"
robinrohan writes:

Jar said it, not you.

I doubt that jar is more easily "duped" than I am. :)


People who think they have all the answers usually don't understand the questions.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 106 by robinrohan, posted 06-19-2005 8:12 PM robinrohan has responded

Replies to this message:
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 109 of 146 (218148)
06-19-2005 11:41 PM
Reply to: Message 108 by ringo
06-19-2005 11:18 PM


Re: Hitler's "Christianity"
I doubt that jar is more easily "duped" than I am.

Well, apparently he was.

(I've edited this. My remarks were improper).

This message has been edited by robinrohan, 06-20-2005 09:34 AM


This message is a reply to:
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 110 of 146 (218424)
06-21-2005 1:04 PM


Darwinism and Marxism
I think there is a link here as well, but it is not nearly so crude and obvious as Hitler's use of natural selection. The link lies in the idea of "dialectical materialism":

On 16th January, 1861, Marx wrote to Lassalle: "Darwin’s book is very important and serves me as a natural scientific basis for the class struggle in history. One has to put up with the crude English method of development, of course. Despite all deficiencies, not only is the death-blow dealt here for the first time to ‘teleology’ in the natural sciences but its rational meaning is empirically explained."

I don't quite get this (yet), but it seems from this that Marx certainly thought there was a link.

This message has been edited by robinrohan, 06-21-2005 12:04 PM

This message has been edited by robinrohan, 06-21-2005 12:09 PM


Replies to this message:
 Message 112 by cmanteuf, posted 06-21-2005 4:19 PM robinrohan has responded

  
robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 111 of 146 (218445)
06-21-2005 3:51 PM


Science is King
As regards the prestige of science in the first part of the 20th century, I ran across the idea that people "fastened upon Marx's convoluted and half-baked theories because of the new turn-of-the-century faith in science as the answer to every problem, including human ones" (11).

That's exactly what I'm referring to.

Also this:

Marx was seen, and saw himself, as "the Darwin of society": as the originator of a historical science to match Darwin's biological science. He provided his certainties in terms of proven theory. The contrast between his own and Darwin's methods is very striking, and indeed, Marx saw this himself--referring rather patronizingly to Darwin's "crude English empiricism."

Robert Conquest, "Reflections on a Ravaged Century," quoted in Robert Harvey's "A Short History of Communism," St. Martin's, 2004.

This message has been edited by robinrohan, 06-21-2005 02:52 PM


Replies to this message:
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cmanteuf
Member (Idle past 4870 days)
Posts: 92
From: Virginia, USA
Joined: 11-08-2004


Message 112 of 146 (218452)
06-21-2005 4:19 PM
Reply to: Message 110 by robinrohan
06-21-2005 1:04 PM


Re: Darwinism and Marxism
Note that the Marxists-Leninists themselves preferred Lamarckian to Darwinian principles.

The idea was that Lamarckian inheritance showed a way to create the New Soviet Man. Trofim Lysenko provided a biological explanation for the creation of the New Soviet Man- if they simply worked hard enough at the creation of the New Soviet State, then the New Soviet Man to live in the New Soviet State would come into being. All that was necessary was personal will-power to live your life in the proper Marxist-Leninist way[1]. You see, the unguided nature of Darwinian principles bothered the Communist theoriticians; they much preferred the directed, guided Lamarckian inheritance to the random mutation-natural selection that Darwin offered. They could control Lamarckian principles, they couldn't RMNS.

Why did the theoreticians and not the scientists make the decision? In 1929 Stalin gave a speech announcing that in the future the apparatchiks would control science- it would not be left to the scientists but vetted for its political and philosophical agreement with Marxist-Leninist theory. By 1935 Lysenko had gained control of the Soviet agricultural and biological apparatuses. During the life of Stalin he crushed all opposition to his politically proper but scientifically invalid ideas. At least one of his scientific opponents was killed by the NKVD during the Great Purges of the late 1930's and early 1940's. In 1948 he gave a famous speech denouncing Mendel's theories as reactionary. Lysenko maintained his grip on Soviet biology until ~1965, when the tide finally turned and the scientific reputation of Lysenko was destroyed. But Soviet biology and genetics never recovered from the disastrous 30 year interlude in the land of politically-controlled science.

Just a point to make on this topic,

Chris

[1]: This was one of the many justifications that the Soviet State offered when they shipped undesireables (the Parasites, in the jargon of the day) to Siberia- it was a quarentine to keep them from reproducing their degenerate ways in the next generation. Obviously many other justifications existed, and the biological one was not the reason for the Purges, but it is a reminder of the way that people twist science to support their ideological goals.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 110 by robinrohan, posted 06-21-2005 1:04 PM robinrohan has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 116 by robinrohan, posted 06-22-2005 9:19 AM cmanteuf has responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 16333
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 113 of 146 (218470)
06-21-2005 5:08 PM
Reply to: Message 111 by robinrohan
06-21-2005 3:51 PM


Re: Science is King
It seems to me that you are talking about science being held in high esteem by the intelligentsia. But Hitler appealed to the common man, the uneducated masses. They knew little about science and cared less.

Religion was a more effective tool for controlling them.


People who think they have all the answers usually don't understand the questions.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 111 by robinrohan, posted 06-21-2005 3:51 PM robinrohan has responded

Replies to this message:
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 114 of 146 (218509)
06-21-2005 7:33 PM
Reply to: Message 113 by ringo
06-21-2005 5:08 PM


Re: Science is King
it is a reminder of the way that people twist science to support their ideological goals.

Exactly.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 113 by ringo, posted 06-21-2005 5:08 PM ringo has not yet responded

  
robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 115 of 146 (218542)
06-21-2005 10:58 PM
Reply to: Message 113 by ringo
06-21-2005 5:08 PM


Re: Science is King
It seems to me that you are talking about science being held in high esteem by the intelligentsia. But Hitler appealed to the common man, the uneducated masses. They knew little about science and cared less.

You don't have to know about something to be impressed by it. If something gains a great aura of prestige--as Science did--then anything that attaches its name to it will be enhanced, even if the attachment is false. It is like endorsements in advertising.

But Nazism and the rise of communism are different, since Hitler was voted in (more or less), and communism came about through revolution.

So Hitler did have to appeal for votes, and he used mostly, as far as I can tell, racist arguments ("Jewish Marxism," "Jewish democracy", etc). He also used Christianity.

But you can't say that about the communists. None of that Christianity for them. It was supposed to be "scientific" ideas that composed their platform. That gave it great appeal, along, of course, with the sense of injustice against the poor that was going to be fixed--probably the most important element.


This message is a reply to:
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 116 of 146 (218640)
06-22-2005 9:19 AM
Reply to: Message 112 by cmanteuf
06-21-2005 4:19 PM


Re: Darwinism and Marxism
"Darwin’s book is very important and serves me as a natural scientific basis for the class struggle in history. One has to put up with the crude English method of development, of course. Despite all deficiencies, not only is the death-blow dealt here for the first time to ‘teleology’ in the natural sciences but its rational meaning is empirically explained."

I'm still trying to figure out what this comment by Marx means. It seems to mean that Darwin did away with the idea of purposeful design in nature ("teleology"), and this, says Marx, is a "scientific basis for the class struggle in history." How so? Is he saying that the lack of design in the animal kingdom corresponds to a lack of design in human society--so there's no reason why human society can't be designed anyway we see fit?

Also Marx says somewhere,"Darwin did not know what a bitter satire about humanity, and his own countrymen in particular, he was writing when he showed that free competition, the struggle for existence which the economists hold up as the highest achievement in history, was the normal condition of the animal kingdom. Only a conscious organization of social production, in which production and distribution are planned, can lift human society above the rest of the animal kingdom . . ." (qtd. in Isaiah Berlin, "Marx," 4th ed, 102-03).

In other words, the "struggle for existence" applies to the animal kingdom but need not apply to human society (just the opposite of Hitlerism). Socialism can do away with this struggle for existence.

This sounds very different from the Marxist-Leninist ideas you describe.

This message has been edited by robinrohan, 06-22-2005 08:23 AM


This message is a reply to:
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 117 of 146 (218662)
06-22-2005 12:28 PM


Why Marxism is atheistic
You begin with Hegel but you reject his idea of "Absolute Spirit" as something totally without evidence. However, you keep his notion of a dynamic dialectics in history, which can be "proven" by references to historical events.

Along comes Darwin, who shows us that there is no design in nature--and thus no Designer.

This reinforces the idea of the materialistic part of dialecticial materialism. Everything is physical; therefore, what people struggle for are physical things.

Because we are all in a struggle for physical things, all notions of morality and legality must be jettisoned as sentimental illusions created by the upper classes, which are brainwashed into the poor.

Religious belief is one of these illusions.

Since ideas about individual worth and treating people kindly and so forth are mere sentiments, the only standard we have is the necessary progress of history. This we call "scientific morality." Are you in tune with the unfolding events of history, or are you not? If not, you can be labelled as useless and destructive to the dynamic process of socialization.

As a result of such ideas, untold millions were tortured, starved, or executed.

There are 3 (not 2) categories:

1. the scientific
2. the irrational secular
3. the religious

Since the first half of the century, there has been a backlash against science. The problem is that science is being confused with these irrational secular systems--confused because they were referred to as "scientific" by their proponents.

To call an irrational secular system, such as Nazism or communism, "religious," is very misleading. Some wish to do this to blame religion and thus keep science free of guilt. Science is free of guilt, but this type of labelling is as misleading as calling an irrational secular system scientific.

An irrational secular system is neither religious nor scientific.

Such are the dangers of secularism.

This message has been edited by robinrohan, 06-22-2005 11:29 AM

This message has been edited by robinrohan, 06-22-2005 11:50 AM

This message has been edited by robinrohan, 06-22-2005 12:05 PM


Replies to this message:
 Message 118 by ringo, posted 06-22-2005 3:31 PM robinrohan has responded
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ringo
Member
Posts: 16333
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 118 of 146 (218706)
06-22-2005 3:31 PM
Reply to: Message 117 by robinrohan
06-22-2005 12:28 PM


Re: Why Marxism is atheistic
Now, are you going to explain what Marxism has to do with the topic?

Or has this become a general Darwin-bashing thread?


People who think they have all the answers usually don't understand the questions.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 117 by robinrohan, posted 06-22-2005 12:28 PM robinrohan has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 119 by robinrohan, posted 06-22-2005 3:40 PM ringo has responded

  
robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 119 of 146 (218708)
06-22-2005 3:40 PM
Reply to: Message 118 by ringo
06-22-2005 3:31 PM


Re: Why Marxism is atheistic
The general topic is "the misuse of scientific ideas."

Hitlerism was one example, Marxism another.

I'm not bashing Darwin or Darwinism; I'm bashing the misuse of scientific ideas.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 118 by ringo, posted 06-22-2005 3:31 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 120 by ringo, posted 06-22-2005 3:50 PM robinrohan has responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 16333
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 120 of 146 (218711)
06-22-2005 3:50 PM
Reply to: Message 119 by robinrohan
06-22-2005 3:40 PM


Re: Why Marxism is atheistic
Pardon me. I was going too much by the title. I had to go back and reread the OP. :)

Pardon me also for being particularly thick, but I still don't see where Hitler's racism was derived from science, or where anybody would have cared if it was.


People who think they have all the answers usually don't understand the questions.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 119 by robinrohan, posted 06-22-2005 3:40 PM robinrohan has responded

Replies to this message:
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