From Faust to Frankenstein

12 юли, 2012 | Публикувано в: Articles | Автор: Сергей Герджиков
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Serghey Gherdjikov

Sofia University


Project of life and world

What meaning do I put in the „communism phenomenon“? It is the utmost broad set of mental forms that have given life to the texts, actions and events on the argumentation, planning and realization of communism. This set is varied and homogenous like a multitude of „family resemblance“ forms (Wittgenstein). I endeavor to cover those of them which are most strongly represented and can be idealized as „pure types“.

Communism is understandable as a phenomenon of the Western civilization. It. is foreign to the mentality and practices of the Middle and Far East. We may be tempted to describe communism as being a Russian phenomenon, for instance (bolshevism), and this is done mainly by Russian historians an philosophers, like Geller-Nekritch or Nikolai Berdiaev. Bolshevism is a historic mega fact, though it does not carry an understanding of the mental form of communism as a project. No mixing of the rationalistic western engineering phenomena with the eastern traditional societies should appear (Weber).

My explanation begins with a genetic statement. Communism is rooted in the logos as an archetype. The vision of the world as a logos – objective order that can be presented in words and figures, contains also the vision of the world as a technology, i.e. the demiurgical vision of a „world“ or a „better world“, completely different from ours, that can be created by Man, by use of world’s laws – its logos.

Communism reached a dead lock and collapsed before it was implemented according to its design. Something more – the communist project realization brought about a huge destruction. Why didn’t communism success? Is it possible for another such a project to survive? The major supportive thesis statement of the study is that such a project is inconsistent because the demiurgical vision of „world creation“ is false. The world (‘1man~~’s life-world“) is not inexhaustible in logos and is not object to technology. The realities compatible with it, like „freedom“, „man“, justice“ are not technological ones. Life is not an artefact.


The Plato’s state is wholesome, perfect, ideal and represents a sensible projection of the justice idea that lives in ‘a better world, the world of ideas (Plato, Republic). Society is organized in a holon where each person and action finds its functional place.  Charles Fourier proclaims the „human breeding” in harmony, thanks to the radical acquirement of human reason, the discovery of the „four phases of history“ (Fourier, 7’he New World). For Karl Marx the world must not be simply explained, but changed (Marx, Theses about Feuerbach). Communism is a „real human history“ that replaces the current „pre-history“ (Marx, Manuscrjpts from 1844). People create their history in compliance with its laws. They make the „jump from the kingdom of necessity to the kingdom of freedom“ (Marx, German Ideology).

Communist ideology, expressed rather radically in “Manifest of the Communist Party“, envisions a total revolution un which basic values of Western civilisation are rejected as „class determined“ and new ones, including a new „person“ status – the „bourgeois person“ eliminated – are approved. A project o2 a communist revolution implemented by means of expropriation and replacement of the parliamentary order with dictatorship, is in the „Manifest“. The revolutionaries in the Lenin party an the communists in the rest of the world apply exactly that project when they implement the „new world“, „new life“ and „new

Communism is a giant experiment of the Western reason, born from a very old set of mind and understanding of – the world – the ancient „logos“ and „idea“. The world is ordered in a certain manner (logos) and is pierced with laws. These laws are knowledgeable and expressible in words and figures (logos). Reality can be changed on the basis of this notion (tecnu). Consequently, the world is not a boundless and undefined reality, transparent and technological sphere. In the West only reality is taken for initially logic and profoundly transparent. To this the belief of the western man is added, inherited from tae Renaissance and weakened today, that Reason is able to build our world.

The difference between living creation and non-living artifact is erased, and the human form standing at the basis of creation and the artefacts is invisible, thus seeming to be the limit of technology as well. The „logos“ does not recognise the boundary between  over the world and the man without limits. The logos becomes a universal principle of order, thus eliminating all differences and oppositions between knowledge and secret, knowledgeable and unknowledgeable, achievable and unachievable. If the Universe is ordered by means of logos, then it is entirely achievable in and through logos – speech, science, action. Consequently, the world can be designed or at least reconstructed and changed. Such is the general mental form of „demiurgical intention”.

The world escapes the explanation and control and thus provokes the demiurgical adjustment to a world project design. Life is not just. People are not equal. This causes an extreme effort on the part of the Western man to take control over the life and the world, in concordance with the logos archetype and demiurgical adjustment.. Such is the general mental form of the utopian project in the Western civilisation. The term „rationalistic Utopia“ is widely spread, and where else, if not in the West, rationalism is a quality of a whole civilisation? Max Weber differentiates between the Western rationalistic society and „rationalistic control“ , and the Eastern and pre-modern „traditional“ and „charismatic“ society and control (Weber, Sociology of Control). This type of project is impossible for the East where the world, definable in words, is empty and merges into instability, and the unborn and the undisappearing absolute is out of the logic and language access, out of the „logos“ (Suzuki, Essays on Zen Buddhism). Such a beginning naturally cannot be subjected to technology, at least not in the Western sense.

The Ancient and especially the Modem West, develops by means  contemporary liberal democracy are not demiurgical. They are not the fruits of global plans for world restructure; on the contrary, they are based on the recognition of „irreversible“ human rights: life, freedom, dignity, property, in an unquestionable world \\ (Locke, Second Treatise on Government”. Parliaments, separation of powers, private property and its legal guarantees, ship transport and the science itself – all these have emerged through accumulation of the human ideas results and practices in the context of acknowledgement of human reality as be4ring self-value in the Christian spirit. All these acquirements appeared without a general scheme, like an unfocused net of local projects and spontaneous creative acts (Hayek, The Road to Slavery).

In contrast to this spontaneous order, called by August Hayek  „extended order“, communism, in all the countries where it won place, with no exclusion has followed the transparent, planned and scenario of the epoch’s scale. Such a type of vision is outlined by Marx in „Theses about Feuerbach“, „German Ideology“, „The Manifest“, „Critics on the Gots Programme“, and by Engels in „Development of Socialism from Utopia to Science“, „Feuerbach and the End of the German Classic Philosophy“, „Anti-During“. With no exception, the Lenin Doctrine about the revolution and proletariat dictatorship has been followed in „The State and the the Revolution“, again supporting Marx, the Communist party and the power monopoly project. The results achieved have also been similar.

But what shall we say about „capitalism“? Is it not a logos project? Does it not design a world? Tile Western capitalism is rational as a state and as economic processes (Max Weber). But rationality concerns only the institutions and not the social life control  (August Hayek). Capitalism or liberal democracy are not technologies over life, but over non-living structures – the state institutions, laws, market rules. Till now, no one in the liberal democracy intends to build an envisioned social system of life, using the forces of the whole society. What is done is to establish  important distinction is made by the Western scholars of totalitarianism. For them, totalitarianism is Utopian engineering  (Popper) that differs from the gradual one by its scale and lack of criticism, and not by its attitude to life (Popper, The Open Society and its Enemies). Francis Fukuyama, for instance, regards the  valid for the totalitarianism as well (Fukuyama, The End of History and the Last Man).

The communist project can be regarded entirely rationally and critically, like the other human projects. It is (though borderline) a mental and active experiment aiming at a radical change of the world, and if it creates the new world, the new human life and new human form, and at a higher level of life -„happiness, welfare, freedom“ – then the understanding about the unachievable world and human form that correlates to it will be false. And if it leads to destruction of a human or a world form, then it is false, weak and lifeless. in such a case chaos will conquer a new space of peoples’ life. The rational project locks the spontaneous motions of life towards wholeness and expansion.

If it is possible to create cities and states, cannons and machines, theories and poems, philosophy and religion, then why should it be impossible to create a whole world for the human being? What is impermissible here?

It is one thing to build cities, to write poems and create is entirely different thing to breath, laugh, pain, enjoy, i.e. to naturally live. Can we design our life the way we design the artefacts? Because each creation is a definition in itself and thus – a distinction in a living context that remains undefined. When we define the „world as a whole“, do we mean that we rationally envelop and control it?

Such an intention and practice is inconsistent because of the life form itself When people intend to create a new lift, new society and new man, they set a task which fulfillment cannot be achieved, that goes beyond the limits of human form, „transcends“ and falls into absolute impossibility. Life is wrongfully rendered as an object of technology, of design. It is identified as an artifact.

Naturally enough, such a mistake is hard to see. When I describe it here, I feel the insecurity of making a distinction between „world’s design “ and the ordinary and epochal human deeds. Is it true that a new theory design or a social revolution will not create a world? Still, the answer is no. The linguistic structure world design“ is ontologically inconsistent in my explanation.

Life is a forward motion of the living form against the chaos and to the re-synthesis. It „emerges“ from the ocean of chaos using its own activity, and exactly that is the world and nothing more. (In physics this is the structure against entropy of open Systems). Life is a motion of preservation and expansion of life. It possesses a teleological form, the form of ‘enteleceia“. Life is vigorous as far as it succeeds to compensate its spontaneous disintegration. This life has a redefined form and that is the living form, like man for instance.

Man does not choose the human form and does not design it. The life-world of the man is not designed the way the human beings design their machines, i.e. it is not subject to ethnology. It is discovered by the born man, shaped to human and cultural form. This world is preserved, expanded and lost in the death. Human consciousness is a moment of human life and it lives in the same direction, re-synthesizing itself against its own loss. Man cannot subject its human form to a distant realization and objectivation. In order to do this, he must somehow step out of it, get to know it and exercise his influence upon it. But this means to go out of the world, the only world that belongs to him as a man – the human  all of them, as far as they possess a human form, do not refer to a „transcendent“ intention and practice of a iteration of this for. When the man designs machines, writes poems and creates science and religion, he does not simply change his form, but only projects it an expands the horizons of his life-world.