Volume 39, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 2542-6583
  • E-ISSN: 2590-3268



This article analyses the nature of atheism in Soviet communist ideology. Soviet atheism is not only a philosophical negation of theism, it is also a far broader rejection of religious values. In giving atheism a firm basis in Soviet ideology, Lenin has played a far more important role than Marx. He also has made communist atheism distinctive from all other forms of atheism in history. The main features of this atheism are the political motivation, the self-understanding as the only true and scientific atheism, the categorical character and the confessional expression in a system of antireligious propaganda. The nature of Soviet ideological atheism becomes evident when compared with the original marxian atheism, with the atheism of 19th century Russian revolutionaries, the atheism of the Jacobines and the ‘bourgeois’ atheism in Western philosophy. Finally, Soviet atheism is compared with modern Western agnosticism. It is concluded that Soviet atheism is an inverted ‘theology’, a dogmatic anti-theology which, however, is less scientific than modern theology.


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