Decoding the Principles of the Universe
Zhang Hongbao’s Tianhua Philosophy
Major Points of My Political Views (Excerption)
One of the reasons Zhonggong as an organization and I as an individual are subject to political persecution by the Chinese Communists is related to the fact that the Kilin Culture that I promoted is fundamentally antagonistic to the Marxist theory. In China, any person with a view different from Marxism is regarded as a political alien, indiscriminately exposed to swift political persecution.
The major differences between the Kilin culture and Marxism can be summed up in the following aspects.
（1）The Kilin culture has pointed out that the basic theories of Marxism are inconsistent, self-contradictory, and unscientific.
After over twenty years of continuous study and research, I found Marxism revealing itself to be a system with mutually contradictory components, a melange characterized with a fundamental inconsistency between the system’s basic philosophical theory (dialectical materialism) and its specific theories (scientific socialism and historical materialism). Evidently, a theoretical system that is incoherent and self-contradictory, cannot claim itself to be scientific.
Marxism has three components: Marxist philosophy, Marxist political economics, and scientific socialism. Among them, Marxist philosophy has been put forward as the theoretical foundation for the entire theory. Marxist philosophy consists of dialectical materialism and historical materialism. The essence of dialectical materialism is composed of the three basic laws that govern the movement of the matter and the three basic categories of dialectics.
The three basic laws include the unity of opposites, the negation of negation, and the inter-conversion of quality and quantity. Upheld as the guideline for viewing the world, conducting research, and handling practical problems, these three basic laws are regarded by Marxists as their worldview and methodology. But the problem originates here, in the very discrepancy between the first two laws, on the one hand, and the theories of “scientific socialism” and “historical materialism.” The law of the unity of opposites predicates that everything divides into two, that the two sides of a contradiction coexist in the unity of that very contradiction, that the existence of each side is the prerequisite of the existence of the other, and that if one side ceases to exist, the other side, whose existence is contingent on the existence of the former, will expire too. The Communist Manifesto, co-authored by Marx and Engels, blatantly advances the slogan―“Completely eliminate the private ownership,” claiming that the goal of the scientific socialism is the establishment of the Communist Society characterized by public ownership.
Whereas, according to the law of “the unity of opposites,” public ownership and private ownership ought to coexist in the unity of the contradiction called ownership structure. If the private ownership has been completely eliminated, how can it be possible that the other side of the contradiction, the public ownership, which takes the existence of the private ownership as the prerequisite of its being, continues to exist? What remains incomprehensible is the very fact that, for more than a century, this theory, crippled with inconsistency and self-contradiction, has led numerous people to sacrifice themselves for the communist utopia of public ownership. In view of the fact that the law of “the unity of opposites” is the most fundamental among the three laws, it is equally incomprehensible that the founder of Marxism could have erred in laying out the very goal of the communist struggle―the establishment of the Communist Society.
Next, let’s take a close look at the law of “the negation of negation.”
This law predicates that everything develops in accordance with the law of motion, which is characterized with an undulating, forward movement, or a spiraling, upward mode. The human experience of the past few thousands years has proven the validity of the trajectory of movement prescribed by this law. When he described the path of development of human society, however, Marx expectedly came up with a stepped curve. From Marxist historical perspective, the human society can be divided into five stages. The first stage is primitive society; the second, slave society; the third, feudal society; the fourth, capitalist society; and the fifth, communist society. According to the Marxist historical view, human society will advance, step by step, along this upward curve until its reaches the highest stage of human social development―the communist society, which is apparently a perfect human society. But Marx forgot a major premise: the trajectory of things’ movement should be in an undulating (forward), or spiraling (upward) mode, not along a stepped curve. Could this have been Marx’s negligence? It is not likely. The main reason can traced to the fact that Marx did not discover these three basic laws, and his failure to fully comprehend Feuerbach’s “materialism” and Hegel’s three basic laws and “dialectics” explains why his own theory is inconsistent, self-contradictory, and full of discrepancies. A theoretical system without a solid foundation will certainly crumble in a real test.
（2）“The Law of Yin and Yang as the Root of Each Other” deprives the Communist Public Ownership of its Theoretical Foothold.
In the past few decades, the critique of the Marxist theory of ownership has been limited to arguments based on empirical evidence. I attempt to expose the absurdity of the Marxist ownership theory from the angle of philosophical principles and from the perspective of the laws of development.
In 1992, based on an in-depth research I had conducted on the traditional Chinese philosophical concept―“the principle of Yin an Yang,” I advanced the view that “the law of movement between the Yin and Yang properties of matters is one of the basic universal laws.” The law predicates that everything in the universe can be classified into two major groups: matter of Yin and matter of Yang. These two groups are inter-related, inter-restrained and inter-dependent. Yin cannot exist without Yang, and vice versa. Each has the other as the prerequisite of its existence. Their opposition constitutes the very condition of their existence. I further pointed out that the difference between the theory of “Yin and Yang” and the law of “unity of opposites” consists in the recognition of the fact that everything not only divides into two, but more importantly, after the division, each of the two sides contains its own Yin and Yang as the intrinsic properties of its own system, the properties that are subject, in their turn, to the governance of the law of motion between Yin and Yang. Things in accordance with this law will thrive and prosper, while those against it will become extinct.
In the ownership structure of human society, the private ownership can be regarded as Yin, while the public ownership can be classified as Yang. Since Yin and Yang are inter-related and inter-dependent, with one’s existence as the prerequisite of the other’s existence, it is only natural that if one ceases to exist, it opposite cannot survive either.
If all social wealth is under public ownership and evenly distributed to each member regardless of his or her contribution to the society, without a mechanism of competition, then people will lose their incentives, their creative power and enthusiasm for production will be thwarted, and the society’s productivity will suffer as a result, causing social vices of various kinds to emerge. The collapse of former Soviet Union and the Socialist Block has testified to the invalidity of the theory and system of totalitarian public ownership. At the other end of the spectrum, if social wealth is under total private ownership, with no accumulated savings at the national or collective level, then the national interest and public enterprises will suffer, leading to prevalence of egocentric concepts and behaviors. Human society, therefore, should take care of both individual and community interests by allowing both public and private ownership to coexist in mutual dependency. A balanced ownership structure is conducive to a harmonious development of the society, to the ultimate benefit of humanity. In this sense, the ownership theory proposed in The Communist Manifesto, with its political objective to “completely eliminate private ownership,” has brought disasters to the mankind because it is antagonistic to the law of “Yin and Yang” that governs the development of the human and natural world.
（3）“The Dialectics of Mind and Matter” Broke into a Forbidden Zone of the Communist Party’s Ideology and Shaken the Philosophical Foundation of Marxism.
Which is primary, matter or mind? This philosophical topic has been the focus of debates in the philosophical circles for centuries, dividing philosophers into two major camps: the materialists and the idealists. This debate in the philosophical circles originally had little to do with common people. The communist party, however, has always regarded philosophy as part of ideology and introduced ideology into the political battlefield. A simple philosophical topic has been transformed in Mainland China into a political criterion for distinguishing revolutionaries from reactionaries. Whoever accepts the thesis that “matter is primary” is thereby a thorough materialist and a revolutionary; whoever refuses to accept this thesis is thereby an idealist, a reactionary, a counter-revolutionary. This rule of political terror has continued in China for several decades and remains a forbidden zone in the fields of ideology, philosophy and politics.
Around 1987, taking advantage of a brief period of relaxation, or ideological emancipation, brought about by China’s opening up and reform, I proposed the theory of “the dialectics of mind and matter.” This theory predicates that both mind and matter are objective existences, the only difference between them residing in the fact that one is in covert existence while the other is overt; one is in virtual existence while the other is substantial. The two existences are mutually convertible under certain circumstances; i.e. mind can be transformed into matter, and matter into mind. It is meaningless to ask which of them is primary.
“The dialectics of mind and matter,” as a theory independent from either one of the two philosophical camps, a theory that has escapes the restraining dichotomy of materialism and idealism, brought a breath of fresh air into China’s depressing theoretical circles. Of course, I knew very well at that time that I would have to pay a heavy price for “trespassing” into this forbidden zone.
（4） “The Law of Inhibition and Generation of the Five Elements,” from the Perspective of the Universal Law of Development, Critiques the Irrationality of the Power Structure of Totalitarian Autocracy and Affirms America’s Tripartite Political Structure.
The “June 4th” Movement in the contemporary Chinese history was bought to a tragic conclusion in the cacophony produced by the tanks of the Chinese communist autocracy rolling over the demonstrators’ bodies, but the search for truth and the pursuit of democracy and liberty will not thereby be brought to an end. In their efforts to identify the root of China’s illness, more and more people with vision begin to penetrate the surface phenomena in order to reach the fundamental causes. Searching for effective medicines compatible with the country’s specific situation, they begin to compare different political systems. They begin to contemplate why in China to be an official you have to be venal, why an unscrupulous decision reached by a tiny minority can result in the carnage of thousands of unarmed students and civilians, why China’s advance toward democracy is so painfully slow, why mainland China’s human right condition has always been in recession. Searching and comparing, people have gradually shifted their attention to political systems. And they have come up with the conclusion: corruption originates in the system.
The United States is a republic with a political system that ensures the existence of a government of the people, by the people, for the people. Its government structure consists of three major branches: the legislative, the judiciary, and the executive, each branch having its own specific responsibilities and power, forming a stable tripartite structure of balance and check. This tripartite structure, through mutual constraints and surveillance, prevents any individual or group from enjoying unlimited power or hegemony. The operation of this system has resulted in the preservation of democracy and liberty, the maintenance of national strength and people’s affluence, as well as political stability.
How about China? The Communist Party provides leadership for everything there. Its 50 years of practice has enabled people to interpret the word “leadership” to mean “possession.” Acting upon their mentality, or in accordance with their concept of governing, they treat the People’s Republic as a land under the rule of a feudal dynasty, the party’s leader should enjoy “everlasting longevity,” and their “impregnable country should last for ten thousand years.” Therefore, the Party provides leadership for the enactment of the constitution, for the two Congresses (the People’s Congress and the People’s Political Consultation Conference), for the armed forces, for the economy, for the cadres and officials… Hence the formation of one-party autocracy. The absence of “check and balance” within the power organization and governing structure inevitably leads to totalitarianism, and unrestricted power certainly causes systematic venality and regular corruption. The operation of this system has resulted in a totalitarian autocracy, poverty and backwardness, as well as an extremely volatile situation for the country and its people.
A question remains to be answered. Why can a tripartite governmental organizational structure ensure the implementation of a democratic system?
I found that, Thousands of years ago, Chinese traditional theory about “the inhibition and generation of the five elements” offered a thorough explication of the principle of check and balance. Moreover, it configured for the mankind a prototype of dynamics and change that is universally applicable, pointing out the law and principle of perpetual dynamics and equilibrium in movement.
According to the traditional concept of “five elements,” everything in the universe is born as a result of the intercourse between Yin and Yang, and things can be categorized into five major categories: earth, metal, water, wood and fire. There exist inter-promoting and inter-checking relationships among these elements. The inter-promoting relationships include the following: earth promotes metal; metal promotes water; water promotes wood; wood promotes fire; fire promotes earth. The inter-restrictive relationships include the following: metal restricts wood; wood restricts earth; earth restricts water; water restricts fire; fire restricts metal. If things are coordinated in accordance with the law of inter-promotion, prosperity will ensue; on the contrary, if we put things together under the law of inter-restriction, decadence and decline will follow. Dialectically, restriction resides within promotion, and promotion resides within restriction. If we pay attention to this principle in our activities and take advantage of stable structures (such as the triangular and pentagon), we will be able to create a well-balanced situation conducive to a harmonious development. Otherwise, there will instability and things will move in the direction contrary to our desire.
In 1993, I named the theory of “the generation and inhibition of the five elements” as the second universal law of development (or prototype of movement) and criticized, from this philosophical perspective, the irrationality of the power structure of totalitarian dictatorship. Later, also from the perspective of this universal law of movement, I went on to affirm the political system of a tripartite structure. I pointed out that, to further stabilize the social structure, we should add, upon the foundation of “check and balance” within the government’s organizational structure, two essential elements―the supervision of news media and the involvement of religion, to form a well-balanced, pentagon structure.
In mainland China, where people are deprived of the freedom of faith, when results of the kind of research I’m conducting ended up in the hands of the government and the police, they inevitably became important evidence for persecution launched against me and those who share my beliefs.
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