Hegel, Heraclitus and Marxs Dialectic

The philosophy of Chairman Mao
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You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. In the epigraph, inter alia, from Hegel—from his History of Philosophy —that there is not a single proposition of Heraclitus that he would not have adopted in his Logic. The difference with respect to Marx: In Marx there is a mass of new material , and what interests him is only the move- ment forward from Hegel and Feuer- bach further , from idealistic to mate- rialistic dialectics. In Lassalle there is a rehash of Hegel on the particular theme selected: essentially transcribing from He- gel with respect to quotations from Hera- clitus and about Heraclitus.

I, pp. This chapter is sheer plagiarism, slavish repe- tition of Hegel concerning Heraclitus! Here too and still more in the historical part there is a mass of erudition, but it is eru- dition of the lowest kind: the exercise set was to seek out the Hegelian element in Heraclitus.

Marx in went from Hegel to Feuerbach, and further beyond Feuer- bach to historical and dialectical mate- rialism. Lassalle in began Preface, p. III , in resumed, and in August Preface, p. Some chapters of the second part are interesting and not without use solely for the translations of fragments from Her- aclitus and for the popularisation of He- gel, but that does not do away with all the above-mentioned defects. In this connection, Lassalle writes about value Wert p. But all the same NB that this was written in a book that appeared in , the preface being dated August In note 3 on p.

Since Lassalle here speaks vaguely of moderne Entdeckungen auf diesem Gebiet [10] —the theory of value and money, it can be assumed that he has precisely in mind conversations with Marx and letters from him.

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New York: Plenum. In the fight for the emancipation of the working class, Marxism also wages a relentless war against capitalism and its ideology, which defends and justifies its system of exploitation, the "market economy". ENW EndNote. Marx compared the social revolution to an old mole burrowing busily beneath the ground, invisible for long periods, but steadily undermining the old order and later emerging into the light in a sudden overturn. Later, the dialectical approach is extended to Nature etc. Every individual is in one way or another a universal.

On pp. A neg- ative and merely negative conclusion from dialectics.

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Lassalle in this work has no sense of moderation, absolutely drowning Heraclitus in He- gel. It is a pity. It is strange that, in rehashing the religious philosophy of Heraclitus, Las- salle does not once quote or mention Feuerbach! That of an idealist Hegelian?

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A clear misrep- resentation as Hegelian! Reading He- gel into Heraclitus.

A mass of details on the exter- nal connection between Heracli- tus and Persian theology, Ormazd- Ahriman, [15] and the theory of mag- ic, etc. Time is the pure unity of Being and not-Be- ing, etc.!

Introduction

Plato in the Theaetetus is al- leged to express the Heraclitean philosophy when he says:. He insists especially on the idealism of Heraclitus p. Popper applied this paradox to two types of freedom — physical and economic.

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Unconstrained physical freedom is the freedom of the bully to harm the weak. But eventually, that bully will come up against a stronger bully, and that bully too will encounter another, and so on. Unrestrained economic power can bring the same result, in the economic sphere. Popper argued that the state could build institutions to provide this protection through legal means. Marx however considered politics and the legal system to be the handmaidens of the ruling class.

Prophecy & The Paradox of Freedom

He held that bourgeois political systems denied substantial freedom to workers and the poor. Although they were couched in the language of justice and freedom, this was mere window dressing.

It cannot be eliminated by merely legal means. This is how feudalism gave birth to capitalism. Capitalism, in turn, contains the seeds of its own destruction. Those seeds are found in the conditions of production.

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In Capital , Marx claimed there would be an increasing concentration of wealth in ever fewer hands, and a corresponding increase in misery among the growing working class. This trend would then bring about the second step, containing two results. Finally, in a third step, the workers would emerge as victors over the owners, and establish what Marx called the dictatorship of the proletariat. For Marx this dictatorship is necessary to defend against a counter-revolution and to bring about the classless society.

Marx thought this historical process inevitable. This is the historicism that Popper found dangerous, and this is where he separates himself from Marx. And this is precisely what has happened. The economic system described and criticized by Marx has everywhere ceased to exist.

In fact, most Western countries have established checks and balances of legal frameworks to limit the power of the state as well as the absolute freedom of the market. There is no history of mankind; there is only an indefinite number of histories… And one of these is the history of political power. This is elevated into the history of the world. But this I hold is an offence against every decent conception of mankind… For the history of power politics is nothing but the history of international crime and mass murder. Marx was the last of the great holistic system builders.

We should take care to leave it at that, and not to replace his with another great system. I would like to make two comments in closing.

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First, I think Popper, who died in , would be alarmed by the recent rise of extreme nationalism in Europe and the United States, and would also lament the widening gap between the rich and the poor. Both could prompt a resurgence of Marxism or other authoritarianisms — an emergence that Popper would counter with more piecemeal social engineering. Finally, an observation regarding Hegel and Marx.

Modern philosophers sometimes seek support from the early Greeks to give their theories the sheen of ancient wisdom. Hegel and Marx both found their sage in Heraclitus. But Heraclitus differed from these two historicists on one absolutely crucial point: he offered no prophecy, no exalted culmination of history. Chris Christensen is a delivery driver in Portland, Oregon, where he studies philosophy and takes lessons in algebra from his wife, Bobbie.