V. I.   Lenin



Published: First published in 1930. Sent from Paris to Davos (Switzerland). Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1974, Moscow, Volume 34, pages 417-418.
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.

April 7, 1910

Dear Comrade M.,

I am sending you the resolution of our local Plekhanovites, or, rather, the pro-Party Mensheviks.[1] If it is true that with you in Davos the pro-Party elements preponderate among the Mensheviks, it is extremely important that they should respond immediately, rally together one way or another and come out openly. Obviously, Bolsheviks should be very cautious in giving such advice to Mensheviks, for even among the Plekhanovites there is no accusation more terrible, horrible and intolerable than that of “aiding the Bolsheviks” or of working “for the Bolsheviks”, etc.

In the present confused situation there are, in my opinion, only two ways out: either back to our own Bolshevik faction, or a determined fight together with the Plekhanovites for the Party and against the Golos people. The second alternative is the more desirable, but, it does not depend on us. So long as it is possible, we shall do all we can for the second way out. Only after trying out all possibilities, all means for the second way out, shall we return to the first one.

I am very glad that your acquaintance with pragmatism has begun to turn you away from Machism. In Russia now they are intensively translating all this “latest” philosophical muck: Petzoldt and Co., the pragmatists, etc. This is good: when our people in Russia, especially the Russian workers, see the teachers of our Bogdanov and Co., au naturel—they will quickly turn away from both teachers and pupils.

To regard truth as an instrument of cognition means, in effect, to go over to agnosticism, i. e., to abandon materialism. In this and in everything fundamental, the pragmatists, Machists, empirio-monists are birds of a feather.

With warm greetings and wishing you a speedy and lasting recovery.

N. Lenin


[1] Pro-Party Mensheviks—a small group of Mensheviks headed by Plekhanov, who broke away from the Menshevik liquidators and came out against liquidationism in 1908–12. The resolution here referred to was adopted by the pro-Party Mensheviks   (in Paris) on April 4, 1910, concerning the necessity of closing down the liquidator newspaper Golos Sotsial-Demokrata in accordance with the decsion of the January 1910 Plenum of the C.C. of the R.S.D.L.P.

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