There have been a number of books published in recent decades, including “Marx at the Millennium,” which challenge the assertion that Marx founded an ideology called “dialectical materialism.” In this article, Cyril goes a step further, in challenging the idea that Marx was a “materialist,” or any kind of philosopher.
Source: “Marx and Materialism” was written for “Marx Myths and Legends” by Cyril Smith in September 2004, and rights remain with the author, as per Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives Licence 2.0.
Marx states in the 1844 Manuscripts that he is not an atheist; for Marx, to positively assert that God does not exist is childish. “Man makes religion, religion does not make man. ... The struggle against religion is, therefore, indirectly the struggle against that world whose spiritual aroma is religion. Religious suffering is, at one and the same time, the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering.” Likewise, political economy cannot be abolished other than by abolishing the world of which it is the “aroma.” In this article, Cyril Smith explores Marx’s attitude towards criticism of religion – “the prerequisite of all criticism.”
Source: “Karl Marx and Religion” was written for “Marx Myths and Legends” by Cyril Smith in March 2005, and rights remain with the author, as per Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives Licence 2.0.
Cyril attended meetings of the Communist Party while a student at University College London in 1947, but was repelled what he saw as double-talk, lies and sectarianism. He then joined the Revolutionary Communist Party, and was a Trotskyist up until supporting the expulsion of Gerry Healy from the WRP in 1985. Cyril subsequently embarked on a thoroughgoing re-examination of his understanding of Marxism, culminating in “Marx at the Millennium,” published by Pluto Press in 1996. This work sought to strip the layers of interpretation and distortion covering the work of Karl Marx, and highlighted the need for a fresh study of Marx's writing. “Karl Marx and the Future of the Human,” was published by Lexington in 2004. Cyril taught statistics at the London School of Economics for many years until his retirement in the early 1990s and has given talks and written numerous magazine articles on themes relating to science, philosophy, economics and communism.
See also: How the ‘Marxists’ Buried Marx and The Origins of ‘Marxism’, from Marx at the Millennium, Cyril Smith 1998.