Karl Marx lived from 1818-1883. The question addressed today is whether Marx accidentally created the most inefficient and murderous set of beliefs in history, or if something more dreadful was at work in his mind and heart.
The crux is whether Marx simply gave up belief in God, or more darkly—decided to cast his lot with Satan against Yahweh, in spite of the implications?
Surprisingly, Marx made a large number of statements seemingly in support of the Devil, judgment and hell. But the reader can decide themselves the question of this essay—whether Marx was stupid, crazed or diabolical.
Considering Karl Marx’s character, in Paul Johnson’s illuminating book Intellectuals, he is described as a natural rebel who fought with his conservative, capitalist father. In later years Johnson describes the shambolic life shared with his wife Jennie, and how continual poverty bore down on their family, exacting a mighty toll. Marx is described as extremely unkempt and unclean, with filthy skin continually suffering boils and carbuncles from its unhygienic state.
According to Johnson, a fellow revolutionary named Karl Heinzen described the perpetually angry Marx’s repulsive appearance:
He found Marx “intolerably dirty,” a “cross between a cat and an ape,” with “disheveled coal-black hair and dirty yellow complexion.” It was said impossible to say whether his clothes were mud-colored or just filthy.
Interestingly, Marx was a hypocrite in several ways. First, he held a family servant as essentially an indentured slave in his home, never paying her. For someone who based his life’s work on liberating the poor and victimized, this is shocking. Second, he had a son with this domestic servant whom he never acknowledged, despite them living in attached quarters. Third, he lived off his friend Engel’s wealth taken from the factories he’d inherited from his father. So he was completely supported by capitalist largess which was said to not exist.
Was Karl Marx stupid? Whether Marx was lacking in intellect can be easily deduced. He graduated with his PhD at 24, an early age, so he could not have lacked raw intelligence. Johnson describes him as a good, not great scholar, who graduated from a lesser university, and doesn’t seem to have been talented enough to pick up a teaching post.
Johnson describes his intellectual character:
But in a deeper sense he was not really a scholar and not a scientist at all. He was not interested in finding the truth but in proclaiming it. There were three strands in Marx: the poet, the journalist and the moralist. Each was important. Together, and in combination with his enormous will, they made him a formidable writer and seer. But there was nothing scientific about him; indeed, in all that matters he was anti-scientific.
Johnson claims his great gift was in “polemical (argumentative) journalism” and that he had a real gift for creating memorable, poetic images to suit his arguments, although he was a relentless borrower of others ideas and phrases. For example, his entire worldview is lifted almost whole from Hegel, although he does adapt it to extreme atheism. But all of his work exhibits intellectual dishonesty, if not outright fraud, whether purposeful or the results of mere rabid bias, according to Johnson.
Again, we ask was Karl Marx crazy or clinically insane? What are the criteria of insanity? According to Merriam-Webster’s dictionary, Insanity is:
There simply appears to be no record that Marx was so unbalanced that he had to be institutionalized. But he was a manic person, prone to violent fits, who was also obsessed with violence. But we will have to give him a pass here.
1. Religious & Secular Possession
We can, without irony, describe someone as “possessed” even if no God exists, and therefore no Satan, existed either. How? Because a person can be taken over by extremely negative and even ungodly beliefs, and therefore “possessed” by these, while refusing wholesome ideals.
But what is “possession” in the classical, biblical sense? One writer gives these details:
Mark 5:1-20 is the definitive passage on demon possession and its effects in the Bible:
Devils want to be near dead human bodies or tombs; They can make a person unreasonable or immune to sensible persuasion; They cause sadistic and masochistic behavior; They know they deserve torment and dread it; They can cause animals to kill themselves.
Of course, if possession occurs, whether Karl Marx was possessed is impossible to know for certain. But, there are some things that might cause open-minded people to believe he could have been under Satan’s malign influence. Consider these:
Karl Marx could be a devil-follower for these reasons:
Marx’s beliefs caused the following results across the world when applied:
In the beginning, Karl Marx was a devout Christian, but he fell away from these beliefs after leaving childhood, around 18, according to Wurmbrand in a book called Marx & Satan His own father became concerned as Karl morphed from a happy child into a furious and violence loving revolutionary.
1. Marx’s Father
Karl Marx had a tempestuous relationship with his father, who seems to have realized the enormous struggle raging inside young Karl between darkness and light. He wrote to Karl, “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,” according to Wurmbrand.
2. Marx’s Devil Obsessed Friends
Karl Marx closest associates were obsessed with Satan, as opposed to God. These included Moses Hess, George Jung, Heinreich Heine and Mikhal Bakunin. Wurmband says these men and others initiated Marx into Satanism. Bakunin wrote this statement (reminiscent of Marxist Saul Alinsky’s dedication of his book to Satan),
The Evil One is the satanic revolt against divine authority, revolt in which we see the fecund germ of all human emancipations, the revolution. Socialists recognise 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.
Bakunin, a huge influence on Marx, also says this about the socialist revolution:
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.
Another fellow socialist Proudon wrote:
We reach knowledge in spite of him, we reach society in spite of him. Every step forward is a victory in which we overcome the Divine. We reach knowledge in spite of him, we reach society in spite of him. Every step forward is a victory in which we overcome the Divine. Come, Satan, slandered by the small and by kings. God is stupidity and cowardice; God is hypocrisy and falsehood; God is tyranny and poverty; God is evil. Where humanity bows before an altar, humanity, the slave of kings and priests, will be condemned… I swear, God, with my hand stretched out towards the heavens, that you are nothing more than the executioner of my reason, the sceptre of my conscience… God is essentially anticivilized, antiliberal, antihuman.
And Heine, whom Marx had a very close and warm relationship with, says this:
I called the devil and he came,
His face with wonder I must scan;
He is not ugly, he is not lame.
He is a delightful, charming man.
3. Marx’s Autobiographical Poetry
Consider the following words Karl wrote in various works regarding Satan. He stated: “A curtain had fallen. My holy of holies was rent asunder and new gods had to be installed.”
Writes Wurmbrand of Marx’s biographers’ view of his poems and fables:
There can be very little doubt that those interminable stories were autobiographical. He had the Devil’s view of the world, and the Devil’s malignity. Sometimes he seemed to know that he was accomplishing works of evil.
Consider these quotes taken from several poems addressed to Hegel, Marx’s most important influence:
Because I discovered the highest,
And because I discovered the deepest through meditation,
I am great like God,
I clothe myself in darkness like Him.
Marx’s love of poetry was turned towards apocalyptic imagery and scenes of death. For example, in his published poem “Der Spielmann” (“The Fiddler”), he makes a pact with the Devil:
That art God neither wants nor wists,
It leaps to the brain from Hell’s black mists.
Till heart’s bewitched, till senses reel:
With Satan I have struck my deal.
In another poem, In his poem “The Pale Maiden” Marx proclaims:
Thus heaven I’ve forfeited,
I know it full well.
My soul, once true to God,
Is chosen for hell.
Wurmbrand examines the issue of Marx and Satan in great detail. In fact, Marx was not just a disbeliever in God, but he literally claimed he would take God’s place. In one poem Marx writes,
With disdain I will throw my gauntlet
Full in the face of the world,
And see the collapse of this pygmy giant
Whose fall will not stifle my ardour.
Then will I wander godlike and victorious
Through the ruins of the world
And, giving my words an active force,
I will feel equal to the Creator.
Marx also published a poem called Invocation to One in Despair? Which contains the following lines:
So a god has snatched from me my all
In the curse and rack of destiny.
All his worlds are gone beyond recall!
Nothing but revenge is left to me!
I shall build my throne high overhead,
Cold, tremendous shall its summit be.
Marx also wrote a strange play called Oulanem with a chilling prophecy of Marxism’s future application:
If there is a Something which devours,
I’ll leap within it, though I bring the world to ruins—
The world which bulks between me and the abyss
I will smash to pieces with my enduring curses….
We may have no direct admission by Karl Marx that he was a Satanist. But, if his poems are a statement of his beliefs, perhaps we do. From one angle, how could Marx NOT be a devil worshipper when all his acts created the worst, most ungodly outcomes on a regular basis? The main issue here is Marx was a very strange, sick and possibly demon-obsessed person who willingly chose to follow the darkest path known to man. Normally, the worst people are associated with Satan. With the impact of Marx’s writings we should not follow his ideals, nor elect leaders who do, either.
Kelly O’Connell is an author and attorney. He was born on the West Coast, raised in Las Vegas, and matriculated from the University of Oregon. After laboring for the Reformed Church in Galway, Ireland, he returned to America and attended law school in Virginia, where he earned a JD and a Master’s degree in Government. He spent a stint working as a researcher and writer of academic articles at a Miami law school, focusing on ancient law and society. He has also been employed as a university Speech & Debate professor. He then returned West and worked as an assistant district attorney. Kelly is now is a private practitioner with a small law practice in New Mexico. Kelly is now host of a daily, Monday to Friday talk show at AM KOBE called AM Las Cruces w/Kelly O’Connell
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