The Enlightenment's Crusade Against Reason

by Linda de Hoyos

Printed in The American Almanac, February 8, 1993

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November 1989 saw one of the greatest moments in the history of the 20th century--the knocking down of the Berlin Wall dividing Germany. With the Wall, the communist tyranny that had ruled Eastern Europe and Russia for 70 years came crashing down. The overturning of communism was caused by the ``dictatorship of the proletariat's'' own economic implosion, and the persistent striving of the peoples of Eastern Europe and Russia toward hope and human dignity. As in the democracy movement of Tiananmen Square in Beijing earlier that year, Beethoven's ``Ode to Joy'' rang in the hoped-for era of human freedom.

Yet, in the brief three years since the fall of the Berlin Wall, it can be safely said that humanity has let this grand opportunity for the advancement of humanity slip through its fingers. In 1990, the American statesman Lyndon LaRouche, writing from his jail cell in the United States where he has been illegally imprisoned, proposed an infrastructural development program for Central Europe--the ``productive triangle''--to upgrade Europe's industrial productivity as the springboard for rescuing Eastern Europe and Russia from the ruinous effects of communist economic imbecility.

Instead of the LaRouche productive triangle, the peoples of Eastern Europe and Russia have been treated to three years of rapacious looting and economic rape by the ``victorious'' forces of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Anglo-American oligarchy. Instead of economic freedom, Eastern Europe and Russia have been forced to submit to unemployment, homelessnesss, criminal mafias, and hunger, all under the banner of ``free enterprise.'' In more than one state, the despair of economic and political chaos has caused the bloody breakup of nations, while the West complacently watches.

Already the anti-Western backlash is gaining momentum.

The reasons for the failure of the 1989 revolution lie not in the greed of Western bankers nor in the physical defenselessness of the East. The root cause is philosophical: the intellectual hegemony of the doctrines of free trade and British liberalism over the continent of Europe and the United States. That domination--otherwise known under the rubric of the Enlightenment--was the cause of another failed revolution--the French Revolution of 1789.

In the latter half of the eighteenth century, Europe faced the collapse of the feudal system, along with the downfall of the Amsterdam-based financial system of the time--much as the world faces the collapse of the Versailles System today. The American Revolution of 1776 against Great Britain opened a new vista of opportunities for humanity with the creation of a constitutional republic, a republic dedicated to safeguarding for each individual the rights of ``life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.''

But the attempt to bring this revolution back into Europe was shipwrecked in France and the events of the French Revolution. The seizure of the Bastille by the rabble of Paris in 1789 sparked a paroxysm of civil violence and war that finally led through Napoleon to the 1815 Congress of Vienna and the beginnings of the imperial Versailles System and the cultural dark age we know today.

Writing from Germany during the early period of the Revolution, Friedrich Schiller (1759-1804), the great poet of freedom, decried the Jacobin fury seizing France:

``The attempt of the French people to gain possession of the rights of man and to win political freedom has only shown its incapacity and unworthiness, and has swept back along with it a considerable part of Europe into barbarism and serfdom.... In the lower classes we see only lawless instincts which hasten to their bestial satisfaction now that the restraints of society are removed. So it was not moral control, but external coercion, which hitherto held them back. So they were not free men, as they declared, oppressed by the state! When civilization degenerates, it falls lower than barbarism can ever reach, for the latter can only become a beast, while the former lapses into the devil.''

What Is the Enlightenment?

For this tragic turn of events, we have to thank the so-called French Enlightenment which swept France through the span of the eighteeth century. What is ``the Enlightenment?'' The German philosopher Immanuel Kant (1724-1804), who, in contrast to Schiller, considered the French Revolution the crowning event of his life, provides an answer:

``Enlightenment is man's emergence from his self-imposed tutelage. Tutelage is the inability to use one's own understanding without another's guidance. This tutelage is self-imposed if its cause lies not in lack of understanding but in indecision and lack of courage to use one's own mind without another's guidance. Dare to know! Have the courage to use one's own understanding! is therefore the motto of the Enlightenment.... If it is only given freedom, enlightenment is inevitable.... We [do] live in an age of Enlightenment. We have some obvious indications that the field of working toward the goal of religious truth is now being opened.''

In point of fact, as we shall demonstrate, the goal of the Enlightenment was not ``religious truth,'' but the severance of man from God.

Its motto was reason, but in the name of challenging what it called the superstition of religion, the Enlightenment acted to destroy science.

In the name of freedom, it established the preconditions for terror and tyranny.

For these achievements, we have principally to thank two people, Francois Arouet--a.k.a. Voltaire (1694-1778) and Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778). Under the tutelage of the British Royal Society, Voltaire took on the first challenge, and Rousseau can definitely be credited for achievement of the second.

The world would have been a far different place if the ideas of the universal mind of Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716) had won hegemony in eighteenth-century France--as opposed to the oligarchical nihilism of the Enlightenment. The question posed then is the same facing humanity today: What will replace the crumbling ancien regime? Just as the oligarchy fears the ideas of LaRouche today to the point that he has been given a virtual life sentence in jail, so the oligarchy recognized in Leibniz's ideas a threat that could bring about a new renaissance and take humanity forward in building the City of God on earth.

It is no exaggeration to say that the major impulse of the Enlightenment was the mission to expunge Leibniz's work and influence from Europe. The success of these efforts, led by the Aristotelians of the British Royal Society, brought about the result of which Leibniz had feared. In his 1704 answer to John Locke, the New Essays on Human Understanding, Leibniz warned of the consequences of

``beliefs that go against the providence of a perfectly good, wise, and just God, or against that immortality of souls which lays them open to the operations of justice.... I even find that somewhat similar opinions, by stealing gradually into the minds of men of high station who rule the rest and on whom affairs depend, and by slithering into fashionable books, are inclining everything toward the universal revolution with which Europe is threatened, and are completing the destruction of what still remains in the world of the generous Greeks and Romans who placed love of country and of the public good, and the welfare of future generations before fortune and even before life.''

British Royal Society in Action

Even before Voltaire launched his 50-year-long tirade against Leibniz, the British Royal Society mafia had sprung into action to counter and, where possible, suppress Leibniz's work. Specifically, the British Aristotelians were concerned that Leibniz had emerged in France at the end of the seventeenth century as the major challenger to and victor over the philosophy of Rene Descartes. The danger was that Leibniz would replace Descartes as the hegemonic world view in France. The British Royal Society was determined that the discarded Rosicrucian would be supplanted instead by what Leibniz called the ``occult physics'' of Isaac Newton.

The cases of Newton's plagiarism of Leibniz's calculus and the controversy between Leibniz and Newton's defender Samuel Clark are well known. From Holland, Leibniz was also challenged by Pierre Bayle, editor of the foremost philosophical journal of the time, the Nouvelles de la Republique des Lettres. It was Bayle's attempt to revive Manichaeanism which prompted Leibniz to write The Theodicy, which was published in 1710. With the exception of The Monadology, published in 1720, no major works of Leibniz were published until 1765, when New Essays was finally issued. Even today, thousands of pages of Leibniz's writings lie moldering in archives, yet to see the light of day.

As Leibniz explained in The Theodicy, he felt compelled to answer the ``Dictionary of M. Bayle, wherein religion and reason appear as adversaries, and where M. Bayle wishes to silence reason after having made it speak too loud: which he calls the triumph of faith.''

A French Huguenot who settled in Holland, then the publishing clearinghouse for philosophy and science, Pierre Bayle was a top agent of the British Royal Society, operating under the explicit orders of Henri Justel, another French Huguenot and Royal Society operative who had first brought Bayle to England. At the top, this nexus was directed by the faction of English Deists, led by the notorious Earl of Shaftesbury and the aristocrat Anthony Collins who maintained that ``these larger powers and larger weaknesses [of man] which are of the same kind with the powers and weaknesses of sheep, cannot contain liberty in them.''

Bayle had been established in Rotterdam by the British Royal Society and knew of the whereabouts of every French Huguenot, who, like himself, had left France after the 1685 Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. In this setting, Bayle recruited directly for the British Royal Society. One such recruit was Pierre Desmaizeaux, who later became Bayle's biographer and whom Bayle forwarded to the British Royal Society, where he became a deployable of such Royal Society kingpins as Joseph Addison and Richard Steele. This grouping ran the literary mafia of Europe. All the iconoclasts of the Enlightenment, Rousseau, Montesquieu, d'Holbach, Boulainvilliers, were published out of Geneva, Amsterdam, and London--but not Paris--centers controlled by the British Royal Society literary mafia. Bayle appears to have been the intellectual godfather of such heralds of British liberalism as John Locke, as Locke wrote to one British Royal Society agent in Holland, ``Please find out what Bayle thinks of my book.''

British Royal Society agent Bayle was the direct intellectual godfather of Francois Arouet--Voltaire. From his first trip to Holland in 1713 and then to Britain in 1726, the young Voltaire, educated in debauchery by the secret Temple of Taste and already rumored to have slept with an English count, was picked up by the circles that had deployed Bayle to raise the cudgels of the buggery faction of science against Leibniz.

To accomplish this, Voltaire simply plagiarized Bayle's writings--especially Bayle's attacks on Christianity--over the entire span of his overly long career. Voltaire had most of Bayle's books in his own library and many volumes of Bayle's Nouvelles Lettres. The epicurean Voltaire feasted on Bayle's diatribes against the Holy Trinity, against Saint Augustine, and against God. Both Voltaire and Bayle agreed: ``God is the author of all sin.''

Necessity of God for Science

Leibniz's Confession of Nature perhaps offers the quickest route to get to the heart of the philosophical conflict between Leibniz and the Enlightenment. In the first part of this Confession of Nature, Leibniz offers his proof that ``corporeal phenomena cannot be explained without an incorporeal principle, that is God.'' In the outset of this short piece, Leibniz states that, according to the tradition of Galileo, Francis Bacon, Gassendi, Descartes, Hobbes, and Digby, ``in explaining corporeal phenomena, we must not unnecessarily resort to God, or to any other incorporeal thing, form, or quality, but that, insofar as can be done, everything should be derived from the nature of the body and its primary qualities--magnitude, figure, and motion. But what if I should demonstrate that the origin of these very primary qualities themselves cannot be found in the essence of the body?''

Everything is fine as long as science limits itself to a simple measurement of a body in space--an activity with which Voltaire was very preoccupied in his middle years. The problem arises when the scientist asks why the body ``fills this space and not another; for example, why it should be three feet long rather than two, or square rather than round. This cannot be explained by the nature of the bodies themselves, since the matter is indeterminate as to any definite figure, whether square or round.'' For the scientist who refuses to resort to an incorporeal cause, there can be only two answers. Either the body has been this way since eternity, or it has been made square by the impact of another body. ``Eternity'' is no answer, since the body could have been round for eternity also. If the answer is ``the impact of another body,'' there remains the question of why it should have had any determinate figure before such motion acted upon it. This question can then be asked again and again, backwards to infinity. ``Therefore, it appears that the reason for a certain figure and magnitude in bodies can never be found in the nature of these bodies themselves.''

Leibniz demonstrates the same in regard to the firmness and cohesion of bodies, concluding that:

``since we have demonstrated that bodies cannot have a determinate figure, quantity, or motion, without an incorporeal being, it readily becomes apparent that this incorporeal being is one for all, because of the harmony of things among themselves, especially since bodies are moved not individually by this incorporeal being but by each other. But no reason can be given why this incorporeal being chooses one magnitude, figure, and motion rather than another, unless he is intelligent and wise with regard to the beauty of things and powerful with regard to their obedience to their command. Therefore such an incorporeal being be a mind ruling the whole world, that is, God.''

Since, as Leibniz also said, ``Mind is not a part, but an image of divinity, a representation of the universe,'' the resort to the incorporeal principle in corporeal phenomena is not a statement that therefore the laws of the universe are unknowable. To the contrary, science is the acceptance of God's invitation to man to know His mind, to discover the laws of the universe, to participate in the ongoing creation and perfectability of the universe through ever-more perfect knowledge of God's mind. Leibniz's principle of sufficient reason, principle of pre-established harmony, and principle of least action are pathways for such exploration.

Voltaire's Hatred of God

It was against this central idea that Voltaire railed. In the first instance, Voltaire insisted that any incorporeal substance must be banished from the physical world. Metaphysics is ruled out of order. Writing in 1741, Voltaire asserts that the British Royal Society would
``not hesitate to pronounce that in equal times two and two is four: because in truth, when everything is weighed, that is what it amounts to. Frankly Leibniz is come but to embroil the sciences. His sufficient reason, his continuity, his fullness, his monads, etc., are the germs of a confusion.''

Voltaire incorporated his objections to Leibniz's metaphysics in his 1741 Elements of Newton's Philosophy. Like the Jansenist Antoine Arnauld who corresponded with Leibniz, Voltaire insisted that scientific inquiry must proceed to examine only the thing-in-itself rather than its process of coming-into-being, and also insisted upon Newton's idea of absolute time and space. However, even in this work, his most significant as the British Royal Society's popularizer of Newton in France, Voltaire makes no attempt to actually refute Leibniz but insinuates only that Leibniz must be insane, a kook, an extremist or charlatan.

``Even if it were possible that God had done everything Leibniz imagines, would it be necessary to believe in Him based on a simple possibility? What has he proved by all his new efforts? That he has a very great genius.''

Voltaire's Elements of Newton's Philosophy is, happily, little read today. It is noteworthy that the great popularizer of Newton had not one book of Newton's in his vast personal library. Although Voltaire claimed that Newton's other great defender and opponent of Leibniz, Samuel Clarke, was ``my teacher,'' his closer mentor was Pierre Louis Moreau de Maupertuis, the teacher of Madame du Chatelet, Voltaire's aristocratic mistress. In 1732, Voltaire wrote Maupertuis, who was a leader of the French Academy of Sciences, ``You have cleared away my doubts with the most luminous clarity; behold me a Newtonian of your kind.''

Newton was indeed at the center of the ideology of freemasonry, which had been brought over to France from England by British Royal Society member Desaguliers, and in which such Enlightenment luminaries as Montesquieu and Voltaire were prominent members. Desaguliers had created an elaborate structure of freemasonic ritual and formula with Newton as the key to understanding. Freemasonry was the overtly political arm of the British Royal Society's operation to destroy Leibniz and republicanism on the continent.

It is this freemasonic ideology which then emerged at the center of the Jacobin reign of terror in France in 1793. The Committee of Public Safety, led by Maximilian Robespierre, sought to replace Christianity with its own state ``Cult of the Supreme Being,'' and was drawing up designs to construct a monument to Newton in Paris. The Committee of Public Safety issued an edict which declared that ``I. The French people recognizes the existence of the Supreme Being and the immortality of the soul; and II. It recognizes the worship worthy of the Supreme Being consists in the practice of the duties of man.'' What are these duties? ``To detest bad faith and despotism, and to punish tyrants and traitors.''

Even Robespierre, striking Newton's proclamation that ``I have no need of hypothesis,'' proclaimed that statecraft must follow the Voltaire-Newtonian prescription. In his most famous speech delivered to the French Assembly, the master of the guillotine declared:

``Ah! what does it matter to you, legislators, by what varied hypotheses, certain philosophers explain the phenomenon of nature? You may hand over all these subjects to their everlasting discussions: it is neither as metaphysicians nor as theologians that you have to consider them. In the eyes of the legislator, truth is all that is useful and of practical good to the world.''

Voltaire's library points to his own role as a conspirator of the British-instigated nobles' rebellion against the king, which provided the spark for the Revolution of 1789. Voltaire's library is full of books like Essays on the Nobility of France, History of the Ancient Governments of France, History of the French Parlements, and histories of Rome. The preoccupation with pagan Rome was central to the Jacobin Terror itself, as Robespierre's younger comrade St. Juste proclaimed: ``The world has been empty since the Romans, and is filled only with their memory, which is now our prophecy of freedom.''

Voltaire the Gnostic

Voltaire's most famous work, his 1759 Candide, was dedicated to heaping abuse on Leibniz, who is portrayed in this banal novella as the pathetic Dr. Pangloss. To each of the horrid misfortunes that befall the naive hero Candide, Dr. Pangloss merely reiterates that Candide must not forget that this is the best of all possible worlds--in a dishonest attempt to turn Leibniz's concept of the process of perfectability in the universe, into a slogan for fatalism.

But Voltaire's own anti-Christian beliefs are exposed in his 1756 short piece, Plato's Dream, where he embraces the ancient gnostic doctrine of the universe. In this exercise, Voltaire not only peddles the complete separation of the material and spiritual world, but upholds the gnostic doctrine that all material reality is inherently evil. The corollary to this doctrine, of course, is that man is thereby excused from all compunctions to be moral, since he is a helpless victim trapped in an evil universe not of his own making. This doctrine was likely the source of Voltaire's world view since as early as 1711, when he was introduced into the Temple of Taste, a secret society of debauchees who then forwarded him to England for further indoctrination in buggery.

Voltaire asserts in Plato's Dream that the ``Eternal Geometrician'' gave the evil divinity Demogorgon--the ruler of the netherworld in ancient mythology--``a bit of mud that is called Earth'' to arrange as he saw fit. After fashioning what Demogorgon considered a ``masterpiece,'' the evil god was surprised to find himself coming under attack by the other genies attendant to the Great Demiurge, Demiurge also being a specific gnostic subordinate deity who creates the material universe. With his characteristic adolescent wit, Voltaire has the genies say:

``Your onions and artichokes are very good things; but I don't see what your idea was in covering the earth with so many venemous plants, unless you had the intention of poisoning the inhabitants.... [you only have] four or five kinds of men; it is true that you have given this last animal what you call reason; but in all conscience, that reason of his is too ridiculous and comes too close to madness. Moreover, it appears to me that you set no great store by that two-footed animal, since you have given him so many enemies and so little defense, so many maladies and so few remedies, so many passions and so little wisdom. Apparently you do not want many of those animals to remain on earth...."
Demogorgon blushed: he fully sensed that there was moral evil and physical evil in the work he had done, but,'' says Voltaire in a swipe at Leibniz's Theodicy, ``he maintained that there was more good than evil.''

At this point in the dream, the genies rage in a battle of polemics against each other over who had made the best planet, until the ``eternal Demiurge'' silences them, saying

``You have made some things good and some bad, because you have much intelligence and because you are imperfect; your works will last only a few hundreds of millions of years, after which, having learned more, you will do it better; it belongs to me alone to make things perfect and immortal.''

The moral of the tale, being that both the material universe and God are evil--and not good, as Leibniz states.

Is it therefore surprising to find that, having consigned the entire material universe to evil, that Voltaire, the great purveyor of Enlightenment, should also believe in the occult? In 1715-1716, Leibniz had corresponded with Samuel Clark, the defender of Newton whom Voltaire claimed as his own teacher. Leibniz had directly attacked what he called the ``occult quality'' of Newton's concept of ``attraction at a distance.''

``What does he mean when he [Newton] will have the sun to attract the globe of the earth through an empty space? Is it God himself that performs it? But this would be a miracle, if ever there was any,''
Leibniz argues, stating that God's miracles are for the purposes of grace only. ``And if it is not miraculous, it is false,'' he states. ``It is a chimerical thing, a scholastic occult quality.''

In this way, Leibniz indicts the buggery faction of science, to which Voltaire pleads ``Guilty, as charged.''

Writing in 1774, Voltaire declares that

``we have mocked occult qualities too long. We ought to laugh at those who do not believe in them. Let us repeat a hundred times that every principle, every original source of any work whatever of the Great Demiurge is occult and hidden from mortals.''

Is this the ``religious truth'' that Immanuel Kant's Great Enlightenment is striving toward?

To be sure, the Enlightenment crusade against organized religion did constitute the plotting of the kind of ``revolution'' that Leibniz feared, as Voltaire's crony, the Baron Paul d'Holbach proclaimed: ``Religion, by inspiring fear of an invisible tyrant, has made us subservient to kings.''

Voltaire blamed the success of Christianity over the millennia on its incorporation of Platonic ideas. The association of Christianity with Platonism was so explicit in eighteeth-century France, that even the future Jacobin Maximilian Robespierre wrote a treatise called Three Impostors, in which he excoriated Moses, Mohammad, and Jesus Christ, designating Christ as Plato in disguise.

Voltaire fulminated on his own hatred of Christ in the play Mahomet, which, although treating the founder of Islam, was received by its audience as an attack on Christ. The following quote gives an idea of Voltaire's incendiary tone against religion, echoed later in the ravings of the French Terror's Marat, Danton, and Sainte Juste. Mahomet is explaining to a friend how he will organize his following:

``Prejudice, my friend, is the common man's king.... I intend to take advantage of the people's credulity ... upon the debris of the world let us raise Arabia. We need a new cult, we need new power, we need a new god for the blind world.... beneath one king, beneath one god, I come to unite it, for, to make it illustrious, we first must enslave it.... By the right that a vast intelligence, one firm in its purpose, has over the gross minds of the vulgar mob.... We must please the mob.... We must deliberate what best will serve my interests, my hatred, my love, my unworthy love, which despite my efforts, drags me along in chains; and religion to which all must submit, and necessity, the mother of all evil.... He who dares think was not born to believe me!''

Rousseau's Hatred of Man

Given, as Leibniz said, that ``Mind is but an image of divinity, a representation of the universe,'' it is but a short distance from Voltaire's hatred of God, to Jean-Jacques Rousseau's hatred of man. The issue of which should be the true object of hatred even became an open conflict between Voltaire and Rousseau in 1755, when an earthquake leveled the city of Lisbon. Voltaire, in his famous poem on the theme, blamed that ``author of all sin, God,'' while Rousseau pinned the blame on man. ``Note that nature did not assemble 20,000 houses of six or seven stories, and that if the inhabitants of that great city had been more evenly dispersed and more lightly lodged, the damages would have been less, perhaps nothing.''

The Swiss-born Rousseau served as the Swiss ambassador's secretary in Venice before hitting Paris, as the deployable agent of the Swiss faction in France, led by Finance Minister Jacques Necker, whose daughter became the famous patron of degenerate romanticism, Madame de Stael. Rousseau was one of the world's first greenies. His book Emile, or On Education, is a declaration of war against civilization. Rousseau even goes so far as to castigate man for disrupting the food chain!:

``God makes all things good; man meddles with them and they become evil. He forces the soil to yield the products of another, one tree to bear another's fruit. He mutilates his dog, his horse, and his slave. He destroys and defaces all things; he loves all that is deformed and monstrous; he will have nothing as nature made it, not even man himself, who must learn his paces like a saddle horse and be shaped to his master's taste like the trees in his garden.''

Rousseau would have us believe, according to his Confessions, that as a young man, he had sat down under a tree as if in a trance and had woken up to find tears streaming down his face and the realization that all civilization is the enemy of the ``natural man.'' The experience occurred when Rousseau was on his way to visit Diderot in prison, and Rousseau describes his realization: ``Oh, if I could have written one-fourth of what I had seen and felt under that tree with what clarity I should have revealed all the contradictions of the social system! With what force I would have exposed all the abuses of our institutions! With what ease I should have shown that man is naturally good, and that it is through these institutions alone that men become bad. All I have been able to retain of those swarms of great truths that enlightened me under that tree has been scattered feebly in Discourse on Inequality and Education.

Presaging Dostoevsky's idea that only the idiot is close to God, Rousseau admits in his Discourses on Inequality that the ``faculty of self-improvement''--that divine spark of human creativity and reason--``is that faculty which absolutely distinguishes man from the beasts,'' but adds that ``this is precisely the faculty that is the source of all man's misfortunes.''

Rousseau's goal, however, is not the nurturing of the ``natural man.'' Given his oligarchical masters in Paris and Venice, his aim is to use the idea of ``natural man'' to justify the harshest dictatorship. As Rousseau explains in Emile:

``The natural man lives for himself; he is the unit, the whole, dependent only on himself and on his like.''
The state is required to suppress the ``natural man''--his instincts and desires--just as Hobbes might suggest, to ensure the public order.
``The citizen is but the numerator of a fraction, whose value depends on its denominator; his value depends upon the whole, that is, on the community. Good social institutions are those best fitted to make a man unnatural, to exchange his independence for dependence, to merge the unit in the group, so that he no longer regards himself as one, but as a part of the whole, and is only conscious of the common life.''

This is the Social Contract, the perfect blueprint for the Spartan state, or any other totalitarian state, be it fascist or communist. ``The general will alone,'' Rousseau writes in his The Social Contract, ``can direct the forces of the state in accordance with that end which the state has been established to achieve''--a common good which Rousseau however leaves without content. Nor does Rousseau provide any formula for determining who shall determine what the ``general will'' should be.

In an apologia for the Terror to come, Rousseau continues:

``There is often a great difference between the will of all and the general will; the general will studies only the common interest and is indeed no more than the sum of individual desires. But if we take away from these same wills, the pluses and minuses which cancel each other out, the sum of the difference is the general will.''

Instead of the purpose of government being the fostering of the conditions for the fullest realization of the creative potential of each individual citizen, in Rousseau's utopia, the individual's identity is annihilated in service to the state. Therefore, as Schiller must have been aware, Rousseau's choice of the best state is Sparta. In The Social Contract, he holds up as an example of finest citizenship the Spartan mother who had five sons in the army. When she asked a slave to tell her news of the recent battle, he answered trembling, ``Your five sons are slain,'' to which she replied: ``Vile slave, was that what I asked thee?'' Upon hearing that Sparta had won the victory, she ran to the temple to offer thanks. ``That was a citizen,'' says Rousseau.

Further, Rousseau posits that the totalitarian state must become the only source of identity for the individual. He writes:

``Whoever ventures on the enterprise of setting up a people must be ready, shall we say, to change human nature, to transform each individual, who by himself is entirely complete and solitary into a part of a much greater whole, from which that same individual will then receive, in a sense, his life and being. The founder of nations must weaken the structure of man in order to fortify it, to replace the physical and independent existence we have all received from nature with a moral and communal existence. In a word, each man must be stripped of his own powers, and given powers which are external to him, and which he cannot use without the help of others. The nearer men's natural powers are to extinction or annihilation, and the stronger and more lasting their acquired powers, the stronger and more perfect the social institution. So much so, that if each citizen can do nothing whatever except through cooperation with others, and if the acquired power of the whole is equal to, or greater than, the sume of the natural powers of each of the individuals, then we can say that law-making has reached the highest point of perfection.''

Rousseau the Maoist

Nothing could be further from the spirit of the American Constitution and the concept of man's participation in the continuing process of perfection of the universe than this attempt to justify the totalitarian state, which is based on an abstract notion of the ``common good.'' Yet, Rousseau is taught in high schools throughout the country as the intellectual progenitor of the American Republic.

On the contrary, his ideas are the intellectual godfather of both fascism and communism. His ``social contract'' is the true model for the ``dictatorship of the proletariat,'' which strips each individual of his inalienable rights in the name of the ``class war'' and egalitarianism in distribution. Rousseau writes: ``The right of any individual over his estate is always subordinate to the right of the community over everything; for without this there would be neither strength in the social bond nor effective force in the exercise of sovereignty.''

Likewise, Rousseau's economic ideas have been most closely carried out in the Maoist state during the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, which in turn are the model for the genocidal Pol Pot of Cambodia and the Sendero Luminoso of Peru. In the Peruvian and Cambodian cases, the intellectual credibility accredited to the evil Rousseau is the source of the shaping input of the Sorbonne University into the Pol Pot-Sendero Luminoso terrorists.

Rousseau's advice for a newly independent island of Corsica, for example, could have been printed in Mao's Little Red Book: ``The laws should give every inducement to the people to remain on the land and not come into the cities. Agriculture makes for individual character and national health; trade, commerce, and finance opened the doors to all sorts of chicanery and should be discouraged by the state. All travel should be on foot or beast. Early marriage and large families are to be rewarded; men unmarried by the age of forty should lose their citizenship. Private property should be reduced, state property increased. I should wish to see the state the sole owner, the indvidual taking a share of the common property only in proportion to his services. If necessary the population should be conscripted to till the lands of the state. The government should control all education and all public morality.''

If Voltaire's tirades against God and king were the intellectual currency of the nobles who launched the early days of the French Revolution, Rousseau's ideas were the fuel of the Jacobin terror. How else could Danton's Committee of Public Safety sentence to death the chemist and friend of America Antoine Lavoisier with the words: ``The Revolution has no need of science!''

Rousseau's ``natural man'' was of course a hoax, which is not surprising. Rousseau was not too natural himself, having thrown up to a dozen of his infant children into orphanages as soon as they were born.

The ``natural man'' to which he sings a paean is not the French peasant, but the sans coulottes leader Marat, who had no problem finding refuge in London whenever he came under scrutiny in Paris and who led the Jacobin slaughters in Paris. ``I am the anger, the just anger of the people,'' Marat proclaimed, ``and that is why they listen to me and believe in me. These cries of alarm and of fury that you take for empty words are the most naive and most sincere expressions of the passions that devour my soul.''

In the standard Jacobin justification for barbaric criminality from Franz Fanon to Sendero Luminoso and Pol Pot, Marat declares that

``When a man lacks everything he has the right to take what others have in superfluity. Rather than starve, he is justified in cutting another's throat, and devouring the palpitating flesh.''

This enragé was Rousseau's true ``natural man.'' As the Committee of Public Safety stated in its ``Report on Principles of Political Morality'' in 1794, ``The principle of the republic is to influence the people through use of reason, and to influence our enemies by use of terror. The government of revolution is the despotism of liberty against tyranny.''

In this way, by the end of the eighteenth century, the French Revolution proved the reality of the ideas of Voltaire and Rousseau's Enlightenment. With the fall of Robespierre's Committee of Public Safety, the same terrorists who had worked for Marat led the White Counter-Terror, as France lurched toward the dictatorship of Napoleon.

The Enlightenment had largely succeeded in clearing the scene of the legacy of Platonic statecraft and republicanism that had been carried forward by Leibniz. The Enlightenment's assault on Christianity in the name of ``reason'' had made hatred the emotional fuel of the ``revolution.'' The concept of imago viva Dei, man made in the living image of God, had been swept aside and replaced with Rousseau's ``natural man.''

By the end of the century, Leibniz's ideas had been so expunged from intellectual consciousness that Immanuel Kant could write the Critique of Pure Reason claiming to revive metaphysics as the Queen of Sciences--this time on a purely Aristotelian basis. From the standpoint of Kant's Aristotelian categories, man's creative process of mind and God are both equally unknowable. Truth is reduced to pragmatism: ``all that is useful and of practical good to the world.''

The creation of republics in Eastern Europe and Russia today, after the revolution against the communist descendants of Rousseau will require the defeat of the Enlightenment in the West and a new philosophical renaissance centered on the concept of imago viva dei.


``The root cause of the failure of the 1989 revolution is philosophical: the intellectual hegemony of the doctrines of free trade and British liberalism over Europe and the United States.''

``That domination--otherwise known under the rubric of the Enlightenment--was the cause of another failed revolution--the French Revolution of 1789.''

EIRNS/Chris Lewis
German patriots throng to the Reichstag in Berlin, capital of a reunited Germany, on October 3, 1989.

Prints and Photographs Division/Library of Congress
French mobs storm the Bastille on July 14, 1789.

``For the achievements of the Enlightenment, we have principally to thank two people, Francois Arouet--a.k.a. Voltaire (1694-1778) and Jean Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778).''

``The world would have been a far different place if the ideas of the universal mind of Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716) had won hegemony in eighteeth-century France--as opposed to the oligarchical nihilism of the Enlightenment.''

Prints and Photographs Division/Library of Congress
Immanuel Kant
Francois de Voltaire
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Issac Newton
Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz

``The attempt to bring the American Revolution back into Europe was shipwrecked in France and the events of the French Revolution.''

``Rousseau's ideas were the fuel of the Jacobin terror. How else could Danton's Committee of Public Safety sentence to death the chemist and friend of America Antoine Lavoisier with the words: `The Revolution has no need of science!'|''

Prints and Photographs Division/Library of Congress
Revolutionaries on the barricades of Paris in 1789.

A contemporary caricature of the reign of terror carried out against France's scientists and artists by the Revolution.

A scene in the French Estates General during the French Revolution.

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The preceding article is a rough version of the article that appeared in The American Almanac. It is made available here with the permission of The New Federalist Newspaper. Any use of, or quotations from, this article must attribute them to The New Federalist, and The American Almanac.

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