Why does communist ideology defy religion?

Why are communist states (e.g. USSR, China) so much against religion?

  1. The main founders of Russian communism have openly stated that Marxism and religion are "incompatible". For Marxism has that Lines of behavior declared, which are opposed to Orthodox Christianity, the most popular religion in Russia.
  2. At least Marxism, as it was understood by the Russian Bolsheviks, was a dogmatic, not scientific belief and therefore a direct competitor to many world religions of this time.
  3. The Russian Orthodox Church was established during World War II adopted by the KGB when it turned out that Marxist ideology was insufficient to control the masses.

First, a note on terminology.
In the following, the quotations mistakenly (or intentionally) mix two terms: Marxism (an ideology) and Communism / socialism (a ruling regime or some kind of government). The question also contains this flaw. Communism (a regime) cannot oppose religion in general, but Marxism (an ideology) can.

Nikolai Bukharin , one of the key ideologues of Russian communism and prolific author of "revolutionary theory", wrote in his book The ABC of Communism (1919):

Chapter 11: Communism and Religion
§ 89. Why religion and communism are incompatible

Many weak-kneed communists argue: “Religion does not prevent me from being a communist.I believe in both God and communism.My belief in God does not prevent me from fighting for the cause of the proletarian revolution. '

This line of thought is radically wrong.Religion and communism are theoretically and practically incompatible.

In practice it is communism no less than in theory incompatible with religious belief .The Communist Party's tactics dictate certain party's members Behaviors .The moral code of every religion prescribes a certain behavior for believers in the same way.

- marxists.org

As I mention in another answer, Marxism is an ideology of class rule. The proletariat is said to be the "master class" while others are "lower".

However, the majority of the proletarians were unfamiliar with Marxist ideology. There was also no aim of teaching them the details of Marxism. Consequently believed the vast majority of them simply that Marxism is right without knowing any depth of the Marxist ideas, just as they believed in Christianity in Tsarist Russia while sincerely thinking that Jesus Christ was a Russian, let alone the deeper aspect of Christianity.

So there was no place for two competing ideologies that were equivalent to each other in most respects as understood by the vast majority of the population.

However, in the 1940s, the Stalin regime decided that the suppression of religion was ineffective:

After the Nazi attack on the Soviet Union in 1941 Joseph Stalin enlivened the Russian Orthodox Church, to step up patriotic support for the war effort. - Wikipedia

In the last years of the "Soviet Union",

" Not a single candidate for the office of bishop or other high-level office, let alone because a member of the Holy Synod, was appointed by the Central Committee of the CPSU and the KGB confirmed " - Wikipedia

Nowadays the KGB officer's code name "Mikhailov" is supposedly the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church.


Good answer, but why do you often start your answers with "TL; DR"? What does that mean?


They usually said that Marxism was scientific

Byte buster

@Bregalad TL; DR stands for "Too Long; Didn't Read". I've used it to mean, "Here's a short answer if you don't want to read the full one, which is really long."


@ Bytebuster Wow. Why don't you just say "summary" or something?

Byte buster

@Bregalad Well because "summary" doesn't take an indirect excuse for writing a long answer that could probably be scaled down without losing its content and someone might think I'm too lazy to bother. :-)