“Communism/Marxism is intrinsically perverse…”

05-05-2024Weekly ReflectionFr. Leonard F. Villa

Encyclical Letter On Atheistic Communism

A bedrock principle of Catholic social teaching is the obligation to “work for the common good.” The common good is defined as “the sum total of social conditions which allow people, either as groups or as individuals, to reach their fulfillment more fully and more easily.” Compendium of Catholic Social Doctrine #164

Enlightened by the radiance of the biblical message, the Church considers the family as the first natural society, with underived rights that are proper to it, and places it at the center of social life. Relegating the family “to a subordinate or secondary role, excluding it from its rightful position in society, would be to inflict grave harm on the authentic growth of society as a whole.” The family is a divine institution that stands at the foundation of life of the human person as the prototype of every social order. Compendium of Catholic Social Doctrine #211

Communism/Marxism is the Enemy of Humanity and the Common Good

Pope Pius XI wrote to the entire Church in 1937 the following teachings on atheistic communism/marxism: See to it, Venerable Brethren, that the Faithful do not allow themselves to be deceived! Communism is intrinsically perverse, (emphasis added) and no one who would save Christian civilization may collaborate with it in any undertaking whatsoever. Those who permit themselves to be deceived into lending their aid towards the triumph of Communism in their own country, will be the first to fall victims of their error. And the greater the antiquity and grandeur of the Christian civilization in the regions where Communism successfully penetrates, so much more devastating will be the hatred displayed by the godless. Pope Pius XI, encyclical letter Divini Redemptoris, On Atheistic Communism
(NOTE: The highlighted phrase “intrinsically perverse” is the translation of the phrase in the official Latin text: “…Communismus cum intrinsecus sit pravus…” (emphasis added) The adjective “pravus” has these meanings: perverse, bad, irregular, improper, wrong, vicious. “Intrinsecus” means within, internally.)

The Pope explains why communism is intrinsically perverse:

-According to this doctrine there is in the world only one reality, matter, the blind forces of which evolve into plant, animal and man. Even human society is nothing but a phenomenon and form of matter, evolving in the same way.
In such a doctrine, as is evident, there is no room for the idea of God; there is no difference between matter and spirit, between soul and body; there is neither survival of the soul after death nor any hope in a future life. Communism endeavors to sharpen the antagonisms which arise between the various classes of society. Thus the class struggle with its consequent violent hate and destruction takes on the aspects of a crusade for the progress of humanity. On the other hand, all other forces whatever, as long as they resist such systematic violence, must be annihilated as hostile to the human race.

-Communism, moreover, strips man of his liberty, robs human personality of all its dignity, and removes all the moral restraints that check the eruptions of blind impulse. There is no recognition of any right of the individual in his relations to the collectivity; no natural right is accorded to human personality, which is a mere cog-wheel in the Communist system. In man's relations with other individuals, besides, Communists hold the principle of absolute equality, rejecting all hierarchy and divinely-constituted authority, including the authority of parents.
What men call authority and subordination is derived from the community as its first and only font. Nor is the individual granted any property rights over material goods or the means of production, for inasmuch as these are the source of further wealth, their possession would give one man power over another. Precisely on this score, all forms of private property must be eradicated, for they are at the origin of all economic enslavement.

-Refusing to human life any sacred or spiritual character, such a doctrine logically makes of marriage and the family a purely artificial and civil institution, the outcome of a specific economic system. There exists no matrimonial bond of a juridico-moral nature that is not subject to the whim of the individual or of the collectivity. Naturally, therefore, the notion of an indissoluble marriage-tie is driven away. Communism is particularly characterized by the rejection of any link that binds woman to the family and the home, and her emancipation is proclaimed as a basic principle. She is withdrawn from the family and the care of her children, to be thrust instead into public life and collective production under the same conditions as man. The care of home and children then devolves upon the collectivity. Finally, the right of education is denied to parents, for it is conceived as the exclusive prerogative of the community, in whose name and by whose mandate alone parents may exercise this right. What would be the condition of a human society based on such materialistic tenets? 

Change of Tactics: Marxism of the Culture
The United States has successfully confronted Marxist attempts to derail it from its historic path of liberty and order. The multifaceted effort to defeat the enemy, generally referred to as the Cold War, concentrated many of the best minds in the country. In 1991, when the Soviet Union dissolved, many Americans and others around the globe justifiably believed that communism had been defeated. However, American Marxists, making use of the complacency that victory often produces, have gained more influence than ever before. Cloaking their goals under the pretense of social justice, they now seek to dismantle the foundations of the American republic by rewriting history; reintroducing racism; creating privileged classes; and determining what can be said in public discourse, the military, and houses of worship. Unless Marxist thought is defeated again, today’s cultural Marxists will achieve what the Soviet Union never could: the subjugation of the United States to a totalitarian, soul-destroying ideology. The Heritage Foundation Report: How Cultural Marxism Threatens the United States

An observer of the American scene notes the following:
Many Americans are familiar with political correctness, yet may not be familiar with its origins in cultural Marxist theory. While classical Marxism argued that capitalism and the class structure it created must be overthrown because it is oppressive to workers, cultural Marxism argues that it is not economics that creates oppression but rather the nuclear family, traditional morality and concepts of race, gender and sexual identity. These are the chains of tyranny which must be broken by revolution. These are the narratives which are paraded endlessly in our education system. They are not natural or accidental. They have been constructed by intellectuals and academics, who have had a radical agenda to transform the nation, and benefit themselves in the process.
The strategy of Marxists is always to cultivate a victimized group and then convince its members that solidarity is required against the oppressors. This creates resentment and hatred and is how Marxist ideologies fulfill their revolutionary objectives. The cultural Marxism that our societies are infected with is a particularly Western phenomenon. After the Russian Revolution of 1917, Marxists in Europe believed that the dictatorship of the proletariat was at hand. They were wrong. The revolution failed to spread. In despair, and in one of Mussolini’s prisons, a young Italian socialist Antonio Gramsci wrote that the problem was the Christian bedrock of Western European cultures. He encouraged Marxists to develop a fifth column inside these countries to destroy the foundations of Western cultures. Only then would international socialism be achievable. Marxism is always cloaked in high-sounding utopian rhetoric. This is a ruse. What cultural Marxists seek has nothing to do with true diversity, social harmony or universal tolerance. They don’t want the races getting along. They seek power. The solution for the perceived injustices that Cultural Marxists have manufactured is radical social engineering.

The power to carry out this social engineering must be given, of course, to a politically-correct elite determined to remake society along ideological lines. This is why cultural Marxists always seek to enter government, academe or influential positions in the media. In the process of remaking society, unsurprisingly, these Cultural Marxists gain enormous wealth, status and power. This is how careers and fortunes are made in the industry of grievance. It is also why Marxism is so appealing to the ambitious and unscrupulous. Marxism proved over the twentieth century that it is the deadliest and most destructive belief system on the planet. It has a body count beyond measure and has left a trail of brokenness, suffering and desolation wherever it has taken hold. Marxist ideology destroyed the traditional civilizations of Europe and Asia until they renounced it in the 1990’s. It is in the West that it has lived on in hybrid form, gnawing away at the fabric of our societies. That fabric will not hold forever. (All emphasis was added)