Taking the Mystery Out of Dialectical Materialism

from Comrades of Satanic Reds

Dialectical Materialism (Diamat) is the official philosophy or analytical method of the Satanic Reds. The Dark Tradition itself is Dialectical.

The philosophical system explained here, Dialectical Materialism, or "Diamat" for short, is far from dogmatic. It is not the same as Mechanistic Materialism at all.

What is dialectical materialism (Diamat)?

First, let's explain what it is not:

"Dialectical" in this sense, does not refer to the "Dialectical Method" of debating, though what comes from thesis and antithesis in a sincere debate can often result in a synthesis of thought; new ideas that are neither of the first two at odds with each other. It does not mean a person's language dialect, either.

Materialism in this sense does not refer to greed or the common meaning that spiritual people put to it such as, "You are so materialistic." It means matter and energy, the material nature of reality itself and the constant changing and constant interaction of what is in our reality.

The term appears to have been first used ca. 1891 by G. V, Plekhanov, who is known as the "father of Russian Marxism." In just about anything one reads about the intellectuals who influenced and governed the Soviet Union, students are confronted with this daunting term, without ever being given a concise and coherent explanation for what it means. They are left with vagaries, which ultimately coalesce into the notion that, "Oh, it's just a lot of confused, dogmatic, obsolete philosophical junk of little value. Nobody needs it, and nobody seems to agree on exactly what it says or means anyway." They think it's some kind of double-talk.

Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. For over three-quarters of a century, there was great agreement among intellectuals as to what Diamat meant, it was quite clear, and considered invaluable to science. In the higher sense, it is almost like using the knowledge of the Dark Force and how that is infused into Nature, to evaluate and analyze material Nature, all of the reality we live in - and evaluate/analyze it on a very mundane or scientific level to understand complexification of things and relations of things caused by the unceasing changes. By saying it is mundane does not mean it is easy. On the contrary. It is a lot harder to understand it in this precise way than it is to feel it, like a Magician would feel it. Any animal can feel it. But not any animal except some human beings can apply it to abstract analysis. Applying it to economics is extremely abstract and difficult to grasp for most people, including professors. We are going to try our best to explain it and make it as simple as possible.

Diamat consists of two parts, the material nature of reality, and the dialectical nature of reality. The "materialism" part is readily understood, i.e. that the real world consists only of matter/energy. This is never explained, but there is no need to, because just about everyone understands what this means, whether or not one agrees with it or wishes to quibble with it.

It is the dialectical nature of reality that is unfortunately omitted and considered puzzling. This is because it has been "over the heads" of a large majority of the critics of it. The dialectical nature of reality is not as easy to understand as the idea of material nature of reality, but that does not mean it is incoherent.

Dialectics is a method of thinking and interpreting the world of both nature and society. It is a way of looking at the universe, which sets out from the axiom that everything is in a constant state of change and flux. But not only that. Dialectics explains that change and motion involve contradiction and can only take place through contradictions. So instead of a smooth, uninterrupted line of progress, we have a line which is interrupted by sudden and explosive periods in which slow, accumulated changes (quantitative change) undergoes a rapid acceleration, in which quantity is transformed into quality. Dialectics is the logic of contradiction.

When we first contemplate the world around us, we see an immense and amazingly complex series of phenomena, an intricate web of seemingly endless change, cause and effect, action and reaction. We look for laws which can separate the general from the particular, the accidental from the necessary, and enable us to understand the forces that give rise to the phenomena which confront us.

In the words of the English physicist and philosopher David Bohm: "In nature nothing remains constant. Everything is in a perpetual state of transformation, motion, and change. However, we discover that nothing simply surges up out of nothing without having antecedents that existed before. Likewise, nothing ever disappears without a trace, in the sense that it gives rise to absolutely nothing existing at later times. This general characteristic of the world can be expressed in terms of a principle which summarizes an enormous domain of different kinds of experience and which has never yet been contradicted in any observation or experiment, scientific or otherwise; namely, everything comes from other things and gives rise to other things."

The fundamental proposition of the Dark Tradition is that there is a Hidden "force" or Something permeating all of matter/energy (Nature) that motivates it on to constantly change. (See Dark Force, Entropy, and end to this argument in DarkTradition section of our website.) The fundamental proposition of dialectics is that everything (matter/energy) is in a constant process of change, motion and development. Even when it appears to us that nothing is happening, in reality, matter is always changing. Molecules, atoms and subatomic particles are constantly changing place, always on the move. Dialectics is thus an essentially dynamic interpretation of the phenomena and processes which occur at all levels of both organic and inorganic matter.

"To our eyes, our crude eyes, nothing is changing," notes the American physicist Richard P. Feynman, "but if we could see it a billion times magnified, we would see that from its own point of view it is always changing: molecules are leaving the surface, molecules are coming back."

Everything is in a constant state of motion, from neutrinos to super-clusters. The earth itself is constantly moving, rotating around the sun once a year, and rotating on its own axis once a day. The sun, in turn, revolves on its axis once in 26 days and, together with all the other stars in our galaxy, travels once around the galaxy in 230 million years. It is probable that still larger structures (clusters of galaxies) also have some kind of overall rotational motion. This seems to be a characteristic of matter right down to the atomic level. Inside the atom, electrons rotate around the nucleus at enormous speeds.

The electron possesses a quality known as intrinsic spin. It is as if it rotates around its own axis at a fixed rate and cannot be stopped or changed except by destroying the electron as such. If the spin of the electron is increased, it so drastically alters its properties that it results in a qualitative change, producing a completely different particle. The quantity known as angular momentum - the combined measure of the mass, size and speed of the rotating system - is used to measure the spin of elementary particles. The principle of spin quantization is fundamental at the subatomic level but also exists in the macroscopic world. However, its effect is so infinitesimal that it can be taken for granted. The world of subatomic particles is in a state of constant movement and ferment, in which nothing is ever the same as itself. Particles are constantly changing into their opposites, so that it is impossible even to assert their identity at any given moment of time. Neutrons change into protons, and protons into neutrons in a ceaseless exchange of identity.

As said before, that the material world is "dialectical" does not have anything to do with language dialects nor with the dialectical method of teaching, such as appears in Socratic dialogues, and in those modern classrooms wherein teachers believe that the best way to instruct young students in certain difficult fields of study like history and sociology is to spend most of their class time verbally "interacting" with them.

When a Red says reality is dialectical, he means something very different: that matter, and thought, which is derivative from matter, are never static, but are always in a state of flux, moving according to the three principle laws of the dialectic, which are:

Law #1, the Law of the Transformation of Quantity into Quality;

Law #2, the Law of the Mutual Penetration of Opposites;

Law #3 the Law of the Negation of the Negation.

If these laws sound abstract, they are. They are very abstract and over most people's heads but they don't have to be. They involve what some logicians call "third [at least] order concepts," i.e. the laws are statements about concepts which are about narrower second order concepts which are, in turn, about the most basic or first order concepts. Of course, if a person doesn't understand the concrete reality that is being thought of in the larger or more abstract sense, they aren't going to understand Diamat. These laws are explained below, and are apt to sound rigid and static. On the contrary, Diamat is what modern philosophers call a "process philosophy."

Let us mention also that in the Diamat, the word quantity means "how much" but the word quality means a peculiar and essential feature, an inherent feature or property. It doesn't mean "high or low quality merchandise," or anything subjective.

Law #1, Law of the Transformation of Quantity into Quality, is what primarily distinguishes Diamat from other kinds of materialism, such as "mechanistic materialism." Diamat sets great store on the idea that accumulated changes in the quantity of something can reach a threshold after which additional accumulation results in a dramatic change in quality. It is not the same as quality changing quality: example being if one adds cherry flavoring to a cola, the result is a cherry-coke, like "Dr. Pepper." To a sensitive palate, even a small amount of cherry changes the drink. This is a case wherein a change in quality - not quantity - results in a change of quality. Nothing surprising there. You have simply added something with a new quality, cherry flavor, to something else, cola flavor, and the result is a new, enjoyable blend wherein the new quality, cherry flavor, is evident. A more sophisticated example of a change of quality changing a quality would be where a geneticist replaces one nucleotide in a gene with another (there are four: adenine, guanine, thymine, and cytosine). By doing so, the geneticist may get a completely different organism. By adding a new quality, i.e. a new chemical with different qualities than the one he replaces, he gets a new kind of organism, qualitatively different from the original, perhaps one that cannot even live or one that can't even mate with the original if it does live.

But the Law of Transformation of Quantity into Quality says something more profound. Engels gave a very unusual but simple example of this from the Egyptian campaign of Napoleon's cavalry against the Mameluke horseman. When a small number of Mameluke horsemen battled a small number of Napoleon's cavalry, the Mamelukes always won, even if outnumbered. But if a large number of Napoleon's cavalry fought a large number of Mamelukes, the French always won, even if the French were outnumbered. For example, two Mamelukes would defeat four French cavalry. But 1505 Mameluke riders would lose to 1012 French cavalry. This was based on historical facts. Keep adding a single horseman to each side in a battle, and the accumulated, gradual, uniform changes eventually resulted in dramatic qualitative changes in what occurred on the battlefield, and even reversed the outcome. Engels did not think this was a mystery. He knew why this happened: because the French were more skilled in large cavalry maneuvers than the Mamelukes, and because the Mamelukes were raised on horseback, some riding almost as soon as they could run. There is no puzzle or obscurantism here: just a good example of significant qualitative changes resulting from the uniform quantitative change of gradually adding horsemen to each side, one at a time. Each additional horseman is artificially presumed to be the exact equal of his peers. If a horseman were added to one side who was far better than all his brethren, which, realistically, often happened as a star fighter rode into battle, a reversal of outcome is not surprising at all. This would not be an illustration of the transformation of quantity into quality. The participation or addition of a single fighting champion would be an illustration of the transformation of *quality* into a new quality or qualities. One could quibble with this and state that "skill" is a quality: the French were more skilled in large cavalry maneuvers. But this skill only becomes evident when a certain quantity of horsemen are involved. There are also assumptions being made when they assume each horseman on each side is the equal of the other, so this might not be a perfect example of quantity changing quanlity.

A second better example is the spectrum of colors of the rainbow. As the wavelength of light is minutely and gradually shortened, which is a purely quantitative change, the color of light changes from red to orange, through yellow, green, blue, indigo, to violet, in that order. Vivid qualitative change of color results alters sufficient quantitative reductions of wavelength. Again, a quibble can be made here about light not being any specific color unless it interacts with matter, or the color of it being subjective and based on human perceptions - and such facts can lead to confusion preventing a person from grasping quantity changing quality. However, wave length of light is objective: take x-rays. Due to the (quantity) wave length, x-rays can penetrate the body. Not all light can do this. The change in what the light itself can actually do, is determined by the length (measurement of a quantity) of the wave. X-rays are qualitatively different from visible light rays.

A third and best example: the periodic table of chemical elements. Each element on the table is succeeded by the element that has only one additional proton in the atom's nucleus, or, equivalently, one additional electron in its "shell" (around the atom). In this case, it is not necessary for the quantitative changes to accumulate before a distinct qualitative change appears. Everytime one additional proton-election pair is incorporated into an atom's structure, a completely new element with radically new chemical and physical properties immediately appears. Multitudes of qualitative changes occur with each step. For example, oxygen has eight protons and eight electrons. Oxygen is necessary for human respiration ("breathing"). Add only one additional proton-electron pair, and the result is a completely new element, fluorine, which causes immediately and often permanent lung damage the moment it is breathed - possibly instant death. In the same way, if one removes a single proton-election pair from oxygen, the result is the element nitrogen, which one can breath - except that one would pass out, suffocate, and die in less than a few minutes breathing inside a chamber containing only nitrogen gas. This is a quantitative change different from the qualitative change that occurs by adding a charge that changes oxygen into fluorine.

This is not the same thing as oxygen (O2) changing to ozone (O3) which would be quantity changing quantity since you are only adding more oxygen to oxygen making it like super oxygen. (These are molecular bonds, not bonding the nucleus of atoms). This can be confusing due to the use, in English, of the word "quality" to mean something better or worse. Here is another example of quantity changing quantity which results in a better "quality" computer (different meaning of the word quality): Person (A) has a 28k modem, person (B) has a 56k modem. The "quality" of person (B)'s modem is better because of the quantity of data it is able to transfer. The movement of the quantity is producing more quantity of information; but in terms of the product and user, it is of a better "quality." This is not the same use of the word "quality" that Diamat is using, when we say Quantity changed Quality. Thus, this can be confusing. Quality, in Diamat, means a difference in actual kind itself. It does not mean "better or worse of the same kind."

Some of the most recent investigations related to chaos theory have centered on the critical point where a series of small variations produces a massive change of state. (In the modern terminology, this is called "the edge of chaos.") The work of the Danish-born physicist Per Bak and others on "self-organized criticality" used precisely the example of a sand-heap to illustrate profound processes which occur at many levels of nature and which correspond precisely to the law of the transformation of quantity into quality.

One of the examples of this is that of a pile of sand. We drop grains of sand one by one on a flat surface. The experiment has been conducted many times, both with real sand heaped on tables, and in computer simulations. For a time they will just pile up on top of each other until they make a little pyramid. Once this point is reached, any additional grains will either find a resting place on the pile, or will unbalance one side of it just enough to cause some of the other grains to fall in an avalanche. Depending on how the other grains are poised, the avalanche could be very small, or devastating, dragging a large number of grains with it. When the pile reaches this critical point, even a single grain would be capable of dramatically affecting everything around it. This seemingly trivial example provides an excellent "edge-of-chaos model," with a wide range of applications, from earthquakes to evolution; from stock exchange crises to wars.

According to Per Bak, the phenomenon can be given a mathematical expression, according to which the average frequency of a given size of avalanche is inversely proportional to some power of its size. He also points out that this "power-law" behavior is extremely common in nature, as in the critical mass of plutonium, at which the chain-reaction is on the point of running away into a nuclear explosion. At the sub-critical level, the chain-reaction within the plutonium mass will die out, whereas a supercritical mass will explode. A similar phenomenon can be seen in earthquakes, where the rocks on two sides of a fault in the earth’s crust reach a point where they are ready to slip past each other. The fault experiences a series of little slips and bigger slips, which maintain the tension at the critical point for some time until it finally collapses into an earthquake.

Although the proponents of chaos theory seem unaware of it, these examples are all cases of the law of the transformation of quantity into quality.

Similar processes can be seen in phenomena as varied as the weather, DNA molecules, and the mind itself. The quality of liquidity is well known on the basis of our daily experience where, for instance, water can be changed in quality to ice and steam by changing the temperature or water. In physics, too, the behavior of liquids is well understood and perfectly predictable up to a point. The laws of motion of fluids (gases and liquids) clearly distinguish between smooth laminar flow, which is well defined and predictable, and turbulent flow, which can be expressed, at best, approximately. The movement of water around a pier in a river can be accurately predicted from the normal equations for fluids, provided it is moving slowly. Even if we increase the speed of the flow, causing eddies and vortices, we can still predict their behavior. But if the speed is increased beyond a certain point, it becomes impossible to predict where the eddies will form, or, indeed, to say anything about the behavior of the water at all. It has become chaotic.

To the unintelligent or uneducated, these things might be difficult to grasp. To others, a revelation. But why should it be such a big deal for intellectuals and the well-educated? Because for centuries, ever since the time of the Holy Roman Empire, the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle's ideas were officially made the chief ingredients in a European's education. Aristotle listed ten classes of things, or "categories," he called them, which were all abstract ideas like substance, relation, place, time, action, state, etc. Two of them were quality and quantity. Aristotle taught that these categories had nothing in common, so comparisons between them could not be made. The Marxists said that his was a great mistake, and proceeded to make such comparisons, such as describing relations between quantity and quality. They were not the first to do this since esotericists did it long before them, but the Marxists were the first materialists to do so, and did it the clearest. Most surprising of all, perhaps, was a non-Marxist, Albert Einstein, working out mathematical relationships between space ("place") and time that are very considerable at velocities near the speed of light. At the speed of light itself, space and time become indistinguishable. Two of Aristotles so-called uncomparable categories, "place" and "time" not only invite comparison, but are identical at the speed of light.

Here is another reason #1 is such a "big deal." Evolution is a prime example of how accumulated gradual changes result in the appearance of new species (whether or not this is how evolution really happens all the time). The Law of the Transformation of Quantity into Quality leads to the idea that there are different levels of organization (today called "complexity") in different areas of science. At these different levels, the accumulation of increased organization of matter results in completely new qualities and phenomena (what are today called "emergent" qualities). Dialectical Materialists, as materialists, involve no spirit or vital forces, but are purely material; they'd also view what we call the Dark Force as something purely material (see article: "Dark Force, Entropy, an end to this argument" on our website in the Dark Tradition section). Such a system as Diamat enables the true scientist to avoid the fallacy of transferring the laws of biology to the study of human affairs, of the fallacy of attempting to substitute, in known biological formula, species with nations, races, classes, etc.

One might say that the First Law of Diamat is a fundamental Law of our universe. In an absolute sense with nothing subjective about it, and without going into the subject of hydrogen clouds, nuclear fission of hydrogen atoms and/or gravity, let's jump to a time earlier on in the universe when there were only 2 elements, hydrogen and helium, with first generation stars being the only kinds of stars that existed. Here is Quantity: atoms that make hydrogen and helium only have 1 or 2 protons inside the nucleus of the single atom and 1 or 2 electrons, respectively. That's the atomic number of hydrogen and helium and here is the main point we wish to show: with only that, with only those stars and those elements, only certain qualities exist, only certain kinds of things, certain interactions and certain conditions are possible. In other words, you can't have carbon based life forms like animals or plants. With the change in QUANTITY, for instance, atoms with a lot more than just 2 protons-electrons like we have now, we have a drastic change in QUALITY, not only of what exists, but what CAN exist, and the kinds of things that exist, and that can interact.

The First Law of Diamat is that QUANTITY changes QUALITY - and this is very specific and very hard for most to understand because people mix up what is quantity changing quantity, quality changing quality - and quantity changing quality. There are many examples of quantity changing quantity, or quality changing quality. But quantity changing quality is not that easy to show examples of: The classic example, one that might even show that this law is a basic law of the universe is that by changing the QUANTITY of protons in specific, single atoms, you drastically change the QUALITY of what a thing IS. Like, gold has a different QUANTITY of protons than oxygen or silver has. The QUALITY is different due to that. It is not as if helium (2 protons) is "part hydrogen," or "hydrogen plus something else because helium has 2 protons inside the atom." It's not like "helium is hydrogen plus hygrogen." NO: the quantity of protons changes the THING ITSELF, what it fundamentally IS. Helium, in otherwords, is HELIUM - a thing in itself.

Law #2, Law of the Mutual Penetration of Opposites above is sometimes also called the Law of the Struggle of Opposites. This is where most Reds get the term "contradictions" from. It is very much like Taoism with its Yin/Yang diagram. It says that there are no absolute opposites. The Marxists rather completely adopted this idea from Hegel, while repudiating his idealism in favor of materialism. Every opposite is supposed to contain some germ or aspect of its contrary, for example, the way property owed to a creditor is negative to a debtor, but positive to a creditor. Yet it is also negative to the creditor because it is something he has not yet received, "owed" to him, and positive to the debtor, because it weighs heavily upon him as something he must produce. The names "positive" and "negative" could easily be switched between debtor and creditor. Hegelians, before the Marxists, gave numerous, sometimes glib and erroneous examples of this, such as that there are no positive electric forces without negative ones (even today, it is not known if this is true). The validity of this idea, (aside from verbal tricks or "sagely observations and wise sayings" that there is no life without death so the two are mutually dependent, which is certainly involved in this idea) is that the oppositions inherent in reality are what create motion, whether it is the interaction of debtor and creditor in society and history, or interaction of protons and electrons that causes them to form atoms and thereby the fundamental chemical elements.

In his interesting book on the mathematics of chaos, Ian Stewart points out that the difference between the gods Shiva and Vishnu is not the simplistic and dualist antagonism between "good and evil," but that the two principles of harmony and discord together underlie the whole of existence. Similarly: coagula and solve shown on arms of the Goat of Mendes.

"In the same way," he writes, "mathematicians are beginning to view order and chaos as two distinct manifestations of an underlying determinism. And neither exists in isolation. The typical system can exist in a variety of states, some ordered, some chaotic. Instead of two opposed polarities, there is a continuous spectrum. As harmony and discord combine in musical beauty, so order and chaos combine in mathematical beauty."

In Heraclitus, all this was perhaps an inspired guess. Now this hypothesis has been confirmed by a huge amount of examples. The unity of opposites lies at the heart of the atom, and the entire universe is made up of molecules, atoms, and subatomic particles. This was well put by R. P. Feynman: "All things, even ourselves, are made of fine-grained, enormously strongly interacting plus and minus parts, all neatly balanced out."

The question is: how does it happen that a plus and a minus are "neatly balanced out?" This is a contradictory idea! In arithmetic, a plus and a minus do not "balance out"; they negate each other. Modern physics has uncovered the forces which lie at the heart of the atom. Why do the contradictory forces of electrons and protons not cancel each other out? Why do atoms not merely fly apart? The current explanation refers to the "strong force" which holds the atom together. But the fact remains that the unity of opposites lies at the basis of all reality.

Within the nucleus of an atom, there are two opposing forces, attraction and repulsion. On the one hand, there are electrical repulsions which, if unrestrained, would violently tear the nucleus apart. On the other hand, there are powerful forces of attraction which bind the nuclear particles to each other. This force of attraction, however, has its limits, beyond which it is unable to hold things together. The forces of attraction, unlike repulsion, have a very short reach. In a small nucleus they can keep the forces of disruption in check. But in a large nucleus, the forces of repulsion cannot be easily dominated. Beyond a certain quantitative critical point, the bond is broken and a qualitative leap occurs. Like an enlarged drop of water, it is on the verge of breaking apart. When an extra neutron is added to the nucleus, the disruptive tendency increases rapidly. The nucleus breaks up, forming two smaller nuclei, which fly apart violently, releasing a vast amount of energy. This is what occurs in nuclear fission. However, analogous processes may be seen at many different levels of nature. Water falling on a polished surface will break up into a complex pattern of droplets. This is because two opposing forces are at work: gravity, which tries to spread out the water in a flat film spread over the whole surface, and surface tension, the attraction of one water molecule to another, which tries to pull the liquid together, forming compact globules.

This universal phenomenon of the unity of opposites is, in reality, the motor-force of all motion and development in nature. It is the reason why it is not necessary to introduce the concept of external impulse to explain movement and change which was the fundamental weakness of all mechanistic theories. Movement, which itself involves a contradiction, is only possible as a result of the conflicting tendencies and inner tensions which lie at the heart of all forms of matter.

The opposing tendencies can exist in a state of uneasy equilibrium for long periods of time, until some change, even a small quantitative change, destroys the equilibrium and gives rise to a critical state which can produce a qualitative transformation. In 1936, Bohr compared the structure of the nucleus to a drop of liquid, for example, a raindrop hanging from a leaf. Here the force of gravity struggles with that of surface tension striving to keep the water molecules together. The addition of just a few more molecules to the liquid renders it unstable. The enlarged droplet begins to shudder, the surface tension is no longer able to hold the mass to the leaf and the whole thing falls.

The "mutual penetration of opposites" can be seen in the yin/yang symbol, light penetrates darkness, darkness penetrates light and both are needed to each exist, while they ultimately contradict each other. They oppose and rely on each other to exist. This opposition or contradictoriness and the reliance on each other of these opposing things causes a constant interaction and change. This can lead to:

Law #3, the negation of the negation, the Third law, which means, that when one negates the other, it also negates itself - and this leads to The Synthesis - a real change into something that is not half one and half the other, but something entirely new.

Thus the second law of Diamat is intimately connected to the third law of Diamat, the Law of the Negation of the Negation. By "negating" each other dynamically, electrons and protons form atoms in which they achieve a "synthesis." The synthesis is called the negation of the negation or sometimes the "second negation," the "first negation" being that between electron and proton. In the synthesis, a new or more complex entity replaces, succeeds, or modifies the original pair that were (and still are) in dynamic opposition. The synthesis is superior because it becomes the new object. A harmony is even reached in the atom between the two original opposites. Syntheses were viewed as succeeding the original opposites in time.

Another way to view the Three Laws of Diamat is in this extremely ordinary example of joy: the lovers! Sperm and egg. The many sperms and egg attract and repel - both at the same time. Here is Law Two: one sperm and the ova merge into each other (sometimes), and what results from that merger is neither sperm nor egg. Both need each other to make the synthesis into a zygote which is neither sperm nor egg. Now, here is Law Three: when it's a zygote, the negation of the negation has occurred since sperm and egg are both negated and the new thing, the zygote now exists. The zygote can never return to being a sperm and/or an egg. Now Law One happens where QUANTITY changing QUALITY comes into the situation: the quantity of cells, 1 dividing into 2, then into 4, then into 8, etc. - changes the quality of the cells because at first, during these first quantitative multiplications of cells, all the cells are all undifferentiated. Then after a certain quantity is reached, like a critical mass. differentiation of the cells occurs - which is the most important thing in developmental biology.

Then, it's time for a joke: the baby is born and the QUANTITY of bills you need to pay to raise it for a QUANTITY of 18 years, affects the QUALITY of your life. :)

Thus Diamat can be concisely stated in a semi-modern form as follows: the world consists solely of matter/energy in an interconnected whole which is greater than the sum of its parts (Law #1). The world exists independent of man and his mind (materialism). It is always in flux, matter and mind both having an intrinsic or internal impetus to move (needing no "god," "soul," or "prime mover" to create it or get it going) due to #2, as opposites struggle and then coalesce to synthesize new things at higher levels of organization #3. (Please see the article "Dark Force, Entropy, and end to this argument.") To say that this flux and organization obeys laws is a misnomer, because all such "laws" are just regularities, new and different ones appearing at different levels of complexity (#1 again), e.g. in the material things studied by sociology vs. those studied by chemistry. To all of this, dialectical materialists often add and adhere to the additional, independent assumptions that mankind will never know all there is to know, that knowledge is relative, and that what is known is intimately connected with one's actual work, practice, and changes effected on material things rather than on some sort of pure cognition or mental insight.

In the very practical sense: Diamat is the revolutionary arm of the Proletariat.

Who are the Proletarians? The working class, plain and simple. The ones who do the actual production of the things we like and enjoy in life, and who make the necessities of life so often taken for granted. Of course, the "upper class," snobbish types will be Idealists (as opposed to Realists) because they are in the clouds somewhere, the realities of life never really approaching them, but it is the Proletariat that makes this possible for them, the Dialectical Materialists who understand the practical things.

What happens in society and culture is mirrored in philosophy. The Idealist depends on the Materialist for the stuff he needs to live, just as the entire Idealist philosophy depends on the Materialist for it's existence. Quantity changes quality puts it all into clear perspective. Quality is being changed, and quantity is DOING the changing! This is of paramount importance.

Matter/energy is in constant motion, unceasing movement. Opposition strengthens for sure, but this opposition arises from the same source as that being opposed. There is the negation. It is nature contradicting itself, therefore, quality is not be the fundamental essence, but a quantity of matter/energy is.

Satan, in one sense, means Opposition. But the fact that everything already has an opposite means that everything can be termed "Satan" in the sense that everything opposes something (it's opposite). Quality is one side of something, because there is another side with an opposing quality and both sides strengthen each other. Quantity, however, is beyond or outside of this in the sense that there has to BE something to start with. QUALITY springs out of quantity, not the other way around.

The Idealist believes that consciousness produces matter, or in short that quality is first, then quantity. This is why it is usually said that the Western world (though not all of it) is like a "house upside-down." Our Pentacle shows this as it is supposed to be, the bottom point is Rooted in material quantity, the Big Bang that starts everything moving and becoming, and from this issues the opposing forces that interact with each other to make all the different patterns and shapes.

Quality can also be purely relative to the situation. Example: To a dehydrated person, water is of extreme saving quality, it is very important; but to a drowning person, water has a different kind of quality, a kind that opposes the first kind (dehydrated). On one hand water is saving a person's life, on the other hand it is killing a person. Then, in between these two extremes, there is just WATER. Not good, not bad, just water.

What method did Marx use in his book Capital? He did not "impose the laws of dialectics upon economics" but derived the laws of dialectics from a long and painstaking study of all aspects of the economic process. He did not put forward an arbitrary schema and then proceed to make the facts fit into it but set out to uncover the laws of motion of capitalist production through a careful examination of the phenomenon itself. In his Preface to the Critique of Political Economy, Marx explains his method:

"I am omitting a general introduction which I had jotted down because on closer reflection any anticipation of results still to be proved appears to me to be objectionable, and the reader who on the whole desires to follow me must be resolved to ascend from the particular to the general."

Capital represented a breakthrough, not only in the field of economics, but for social science in general. It has a direct relevance to the kind of discussions which are taking place among scientists at the present time. When Marx was alive, this discussion had already begun. At that time, scientists were obsessed with the idea of taking things apart and examining them in detail. This method is now referred to as "reductionism," although Marx and Engels, who were highly critical of it, called it the "metaphysical method." The mechanistic materialists dominated physics for 150 years. Only now is the reaction against reductionism gathering steam. A new generation of scientists is setting itself the task of overcoming this heritage, and moving on to the formulation of new principles, in place of the old approximations.

It was thanks to Marx that the reductionist tendency in economics was routed in the middle of the last century. After Capital, such an approach was unthinkable. The "Robinson Crusoe" method of explaining political economy ("imagine two people on a desert island…") occasionally resurfaces in bad school text-books and vulgar attempts at popularization, but cannot be taken seriously. Economic crises and revolutions do not take place between two individuals on a desert island! Marx analyses the capitalist economy, not as the sum-total of individual acts of exchange, but as a complex system, dominated by laws of its own which are as powerful as the laws of nature. In the same way, physicists are now discussing the idea of complexity, in the sense of a system in which the whole is not just a collection of elementary parts. Of course, it is useful to know, where possible, the laws which govern each individual part, but the complex system will be governed by new laws which are not merely extensions of the previous ones. This is precisely the method of Marx’s Capital—the method of Diamat.

Marx begins his work with an analysis of the basic cell of capitalist economy, the commodity. From this he explains how all the contradictions of capitalist society arise. Reductionism treats things like whole and part, particular and universal as mutually incompatible and exclusive, whereas they are completely inseparable, and interpenetrate and determine each other. In the first volume of Capital, Marx explains the twofold nature of commodities, as use-values and exchange-values. Most people see commodities exclusively as use-values, concrete, useful objects for the satisfaction of human wants. Use-values have always been produced in every type of human society.

However, capitalist society does strange things to use-values. It converts them into exchange-value, goods which are produced not directly for consumption, but for sale. Every commodity thus has two faces: the familiar face of a use-value, and the mysterious, hidden face of an exchange-value. The former, use-value, is directly linked to the physical properties of a particular commodity (we wear a shirt, drink coffee, drive a car, etc.). But exchange value cannot be seen, worn or eaten. It has no material being whatsoever. Yet it is the essential nature of a commodity under capitalism! The ultimate expression of exchange-value is money, the universal equivalent, through which all commodities express their value. These little strips of green paper have no relation whatever to shirts, coffee or cars as such. They cannot be eaten, worn or driven. Yet such is the power they contain, and so universally is this recognized, that people will kill for them.

The dual nature of the commodity expresses the central contradiction of capitalist society: the conflict between wage-labor and capital. The worker thinks he sells his labor to the employer, but in fact what he sells is his labor power, which the capitalist uses as he sees fit. The surplus value thus extracted is the unpaid labor of the working class, the source of the accumulation of capital. It is this unpaid labor which maintains all the non-working members of society, through rent, interest, profits and taxation. The class struggle is really the struggle for the division of this surplus value.

Marx did not invent the idea of surplus value, which was known to previous economists like Adam Smith and Ricardo. But, by disclosing the central contradiction involved in it, he completely revolutionized political economy.

Marx’s predecessors had discovered the existence of surplus value, but its real character remained shrouded in obscurity. By subjecting all previous theories, beginning with Ricardo, to a searching analysis, Marx discovered the real, contradictory nature of value. He examined all the relations of capitalist society, starting with the simplest form of commodity production and exchange, and following the process through all its manifold transformations, pursuing a strictly dialectical method.

Marx showed the relation between commodities and money, and was the first one to provide an exhaustive analysis of money. He showed how money is transformed into capital, demonstrating how this change is brought about through the buying and selling of labor power. This fundamental distinction between labor and labor power was the key that unlocked the mysteries of surplus value, a problem that Ricardo had been unable to solve. By establishing the difference between constant and variable capital, Marx was able to trace the entire process of the formation of capital in detail, and thus explain it, which none of his predecessors were able to do.

The amount of literature written on Diamat exceeds the summary given here by a hundred billion fold because nothing said here is really simple and indubitable. In other words, there is a whole lot here to legitimately "quibble" about. It is only hoped only that this will be a short statement of what Diamat says for readers who hear the term bandied about, especially in the usual negative manner as if it is an antiquated, useless, nonsensical, dogmatic philosophy. Trust us, heh, Mega Corporations definitely do not want you to understand the difference between labor and labor power!

When Stalin, Mitin and some others after Lenin discovered the facts about entropy, as did Bogdanov before them, they really regarded Diamat as an ontological law, not just a way to explain economics and relations of labor and classes. That is, Diamat can explain the whole of WHAT IS. That's the Dark Tradition.

"Panta rhei, oudei menei."
"Everything flows and nothing stays."

Suggested reading: Das Kapital ("Capital") by Karl Marx

A question: since the universe can be proven to exist and made up of "stuff" and the interaction of "stuff," and due to quantitative changes we end up with qualitative changes in the "stuff"; when exactly did the quality to be aware come into existence? That is, how did inorganic "stuff" become organic and aware of itself? Or more specifically, when did "stuff" aquire the ability to "choose to go here, rather than there" based not on the mechanics of attraction and repulsion, but on Will? Man is definitely not the only animal that does this and to think that, is a great error.

Answer: according to the Dark Tradition, All Things are aware - their awareness is just very alien compared to ours.

Awesome: Another thing that is peculiar is this: the exact amount of "stuff" (matter/energy) that existed at the beginning of the universe is the same amount of "stuff" (matter/energy) that exists now: it's just reshuffled into much more complex forms. It is constantly being reshuffled and, as this happens, there is one thing that does increase and never decreases - as it if is an arrow that goes one way: Entropy.

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