By Dimitry Pospielovsky
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Additional info for A History of Marxist-Leninist Atheism and Soviet Antireligious Policies: Volume 1 of A History of Soviet Atheism in Theory and Practice, and the Believer
People had to spend hour upon hour in queues to purchase tickets to university auditoria or concert halls where the debates took place. According to the descriptions by religious authors, the debates often began in an atmosphere of hostility towards the Christian apologists, because a large part of the audience invariably consisted of Bolshevik and Komsomol activists brought to the hall in an organized fashion, but most often ended in applause for the religious speakers (particularly of the calibre of those men- tioned above) who showed deeper conviction and greater erudition than their party-line atheistic opponents.
15 Logically Trotsky's simplistic view tallied with Lenin's epithet for religion as 'a moonshine' or Marx's 'opium for the Antireligious Policies, 1917-41 33 people'. This notion, however, allows religion to be written off as a subordinate class phenomenon which would pass away mechanically with the passing away of certain classes. Trotsky shows a particular contempt for Orthodoxy, which he sees only as a series of rituals- an attitude shared by Hitler's ideological adviser Alfred Rosenberg some years later.
Being deeply embittered by the endurance of the phenomenon of faith, they made the tactical move of proclaiming religion as the cause and not merely the symptom of social problems. Thus present-day religious practices became the scapegoat of the Soviet ideological machine, they became the only readily admissible reason for the failure of the complete re-education of the masses. The course of events did not quite follow the patterns predicted by the founders of Communism. In the analysis to follow, we will review historically the sequence of measures and policies that emerged from the concrete interpretations of the Marxist-Leninist legacy.
A History of Marxist-Leninist Atheism and Soviet Antireligious Policies: Volume 1 of A History of Soviet Atheism in Theory and Practice, and the Believer by Dimitry Pospielovsky