Words spoken with affection and the best of intentions…


I discovered an interesting entry at Wikipedia today (emphases are mine):

The Juche Idea … is a political thesis formed by Kim Il-sung that states that the masses of DPR Korea are the masters of the country’s development.

Unlike orthodox Marxist–Leninists (or communists in general for that matter), which places material forces as the driving force of historical progress, North Korea considers human beings as the driving force in history. It is summarized as “popular masses are placed in the center of everything, and the leader is the center of the masses.” Juche, North Korea states, is a “man-centered ideology” in which the “man is the master of everything and decides everything.” Unlike man in orthodox communist thought, in which man’s decisions are inextricably linked to his/hers relations to the means of production (concept referred to as “relations of production”), in Juche thought man is independent and decides everything. Just like Marxist–Leninist thought, Juche believes history is law-governed”, but that … “the popular masses are the drivers of history”. However, for the masses to be successful, they need a “Great Leader”. In this sense it also breaks with traditional Marxism–Leninism, which argues that the popular masses (on the basis of its relations to production) will lead, in North Korea the popular masses can only bring change through a Great Leader. This theory helped Kim Il-sung establish a unitary, one-man rule over North Korea.

The theory turns the “Great Leader” into an absolutist, supreme leader. The working class is not to think for themselves, but instead to think through the “Great Leader”. The “Great Leader” is the “topbrain” of the working class, meaning that he is the only legitimate representative of the working class. Class struggle can only be realized through the “Great Leader”, and difficult tasks in general and revolutionary changes can only be introduced through, and by, the “Great Leader”. … The “Great Leader” is also a flawless human being, who never commits mistakes, who is always benevolent and always rules for the masses. The leader is incorruptible. For the “Great Leader” system to function, a unitary ideological system has to be in place. In North Korea that unitary ideological system is known as the “Ten Principles for a Monolithic Ideological System”. Unlike the Joseon Dynasty where there was a huge gap between the upper and lower classes, North Korea had adopted a unified social mass, also known as the gathered-together “people”.

kim il sung solSmile for the camera!

About The Codgitator (a cadgertator)

Catholic convert. Quasi-Zorbatic. Freelance interpreter, translator, and web marketer. Former ESL teacher in Taiwan (2003-2012) and former public high school teacher (2012-2014). Married father of three. Multilingual, would-be scholar, and fairly consistent fitness monkey. My research interests include: the interface of religion and science, the history and philosophy of science and technology, ancient and medieval philosophy, and cognitive neuroscience. Please pray for me.
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