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Is Soviet Style of Anti Religious Propaganda back in Fashion? Part 3

May 4, 2010

Is Soviet Style of Anti Religious Propaganda back in Fashion? Part 3

The Living Church:

At the forefront of the Communist anti religious propaganda was the magazine called The Godless which was later renamed ‘The Militant Godless,’ as if militancy was an important addition. Later the magazine was renamed ‘The Rationalist’ (as if being a militantly atheist was rational). No one actually knows how popular the magazine was because it was state produced and distributed. Destroying religion was still a major goal of the communist party with the full support of its founders like Lenin, Stalin and Trotsky. Yet head on destruction and executions were not enough to remove their arch enemy. Ironically the ridding of the great opiate of the masses was actually creating martyrs to inspire its members to hang in there. So a plan was hatched to infiltrate the Russian Orthodox Church and bring it down from within.


The plan was called the ‘Living Church’ and was designed to split the Russian Orthodox Church along lines of decent. This usually took the form of liberal verses orthodox; young verses old and various other wedge issues. The hope was that by fermenting a schism the Russian Orthodox Church would collapse in the same way an empire would if it was split. Yet by the time Stalin came to power it was obvious that this religion thing had more lives than a cat and schism never eventuated. By 1946 the Living Church was disbanded and the winner in the conflict was certainly the Russian Orthodox Church who managed heal all its major divisions in the process.


Now before people start wondering why we are going over this ancient history it perhaps worth noting that many of these tactics lasted until the collapse of the Soviet Union and do have some relationship to modern methods of anti religious rhetoric. You need only look at a Cuban poster with Jesus hanging a rifle over his shoulder to see how far this usurping of religious credentials was used to push a political agenda. You can also look at the way that some atheists become instant theologians when it suits them.


Echoes of Past Policies:

In the mid seventies a movement called ‘Revolution Theology’ was being promoted. In many cases it was an attempt to marry the teachings of Marxism with Christianity and thereby justify armed revolution. In other cases it was little more than moral relativism where the poor had a right to use violence but the rich did not. In China similarities to the Living Church policy can be found in Tibet. When the latest Dalai Lama was nominated the Communist government immediately took that small boy into custody. They then presented their own candidate as the ‘True Dalai Lama’. In Tibet it is still forbidden to keep images of the current Dalai Lama. Religious persecution, still takes place in China with a main focus being the Falung Jung. Despite religion being protected by their constitution there is still the hurdle of having to be a registered religion. China set up ‘The Patriotic Catholic Church’ as a legal entity but the ‘Roman Catholic Church’ is still banned. Communism may be ‘a jealous god that cannot stand any rival ideologies before it’ but Communists were not idiots and did know that if you control the commanders in chief, a religion it will become little more than their puppet. (That is the theory anyway.)

Cuban Poster depicting Christ with rifle slung over his shoulder


Who is watching the New Saviors:

We are looking at what is essentially the conflict of two major belief systems theism and atheism, both of which rely upon faith to exist. Atheism, despite its ‘No More Faith’ declarations, does have to believe its own ideologies and philosophies or it becomes pure chaos. Once the ideology forms (its faith), the agenda of its new world vision needs to be stipulated. Hatchet jobs are an old tested tactic used by people who have trouble convincing others to adopt their faith with rational arguments. The demonization process engaged by the Soviets did bear fruit in the form of religious persecution, mass arrests and executions. The issue of ‘freedom of religion’ to people like Marx, Nietzsche, Hitchens or Dawkins is the question that is begging to be answered. Freedom of religion? What is it? Do people have a right to freedom of conscience and religion? Or is it just a case that the sooner that it is forcibly wiped from the planet the better? As we have experienced in the past when propaganda is not totally effective there is always a bloodier plan B? What is their plan B?


Final Thoughts:

There is an active little ball of spite called Jack Chick who does not hesitate to share his hate around in the form of cartoons. He also has a list of quotes from biblical text with his personal interpretation on them. He has a list of enemies and states in no uncertain terms that he wants them all to go to Hell and burn forever in a lake of fire. The language and demonizing rhetoric he uses towards his own enemies is not that much different than those of the former Soviet Union Propagandist and the Modern Militant Atheism. Yet Chick is written off as crank whilst ferocious Anti Religious Zealots
unfairly demand level of respect that they do not deserve. Why should we respect their bigotries, misquotes, misinformation, lies, exaggerations, demonization and propaganda as being any more respectable than Jack Chick’s cartoons? Why should people respect someone who does not respect them?

Jack Chick has many enemies but some reason they appear to be the same enemies but so do the New Atheists.


Jack Chick is rightly viewed as a nut case but Hitchens is not.

In conclusion I will return to my original question. Is Soviet Style Anti Religious Propaganda back in fashion? I would have to conclude that for this year perhaps it is.


However fashions change and next year there may be another fad where those with deep seated insecurities and inner hates can invest their emotions. Maybe they will adopt a spiritual veneer in order to resurrect the old Soviet policy of the ‘Living Church’ and try to bring down their enemies from within. Who knows? Fashions change and once this new fashion of bitter hatred becomes tiresome and depressing (as it will) there will always be another fad to take its place.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. ionzone permalink
    May 9, 2010 10:04 am

    Very interesting article, but by:

    “Jack Chick has many enemies but some reason they appear to be the same enemies but so do the New Atheists.”

    Do you mean….?

    “Jack Chick has many enemies, but for some reason they appear to be the same enemies as those of the New Atheists.”

    Sorry, I don’t usually try to correct people!


    • May 9, 2010 10:32 am


      Thanks for your comment.

      I usually spend about 20-30 minutes popping these out. So I do not consider them to be high art. Just a few of my private thoughts. Hence the proof reding phase is often too short for comfort.

      So I take no offence at your correction. It does read clearer. then my orginal machine ‘gun style’ of typing.


  2. ionzone permalink
    May 10, 2010 6:38 am

    Sorry, it’s just I get somewhat told off for your occasional typos in debates. 😛


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