V. I.   Lenin



Published: First published in 1924. Sent from Geneva to the Isle of Capri (Italy). Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1974, Moscow, Volume 34, page 393.
Translated: Clemens Dutt
Transcription\Markup: D. Moros
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2005). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.
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April 16, 1908

Dear Al. M.,

Today I received your letter and hasten to reply. It is useless and harmful for me to come: I cannot and will not talk to people who are preaching the union of scientific socialism and religion. The time for notebooks[1] is past. It’s no use arguing, and it’s stupid to jangle one’s nerves for nothing. Philosophy must be separated from Party (factional) affairs: the decision of the Bolshevik Centre [2] makes this obligatory.

I have already sent to be printed the most formal declaration of war.[3] There is no longer any room for diplomacy here—of course, I am speaking of diplomacy not in the bad sense, but in the good sense of the word.

Good” diplomacy on your part, dear A. M. (if you, too, have not come to believe in God), should consist in separating our joint (i.e., including myself) affairs from philosophy.

A talk on other matter than philosophy won’t come off now: it would be unnatural. Incidentally, if these other matters, not philosophical, but Proletary matters, for example, really demand talks just now, and at your place, I could come (I don’t know whether I shall find the money: there are difficulties at present), but I repeat: only on condition that I do not speak about philosophy or religion.

And I definitely intend coming to have a talk with you when I am free and through with my work.

All the very best.

Best regards to M. F.: she is not for God, by any chance, is she?


[1] Notebooks”—“Notes of an Ordinary Marxist on Philosophy”— was written by Lenin in 1906 in connection with Bogdanov’s book Empirio-monism (Issue III). Lenin deals with these “Notes” in greater detail in his letter to Gorky dated February 25, 1908^^(see Vol. 13 of this edition)^^.

[2] The Bolshevik Centre was elected by the Bolshevik group of the Fifth (London) Congress of the R.S.D.L.P. in 1907.

[3] Lenin is referring to his article “Marxism and Revisionism” published in the symposium Karl Marx—1818–1883, in which he stated for the first time in print that he would shortly write a number of articles or a separate book against the neo-Humist and neo-Berkeleyan revisionists—Bogdanov, Bazarov and others^^(see Vol. 15, pp. 29–39, of this edition)^^.

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