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Reform and Opening up Demonstrate the Strong Vitality of Marxism

In Commemoration of the 40th Anniversary of Reform and Opening up

Submit Time:27-08-2018 | Zoom In | Zoom Out

Author:Bao Xinjian | Source:People’s Daily (July 30, 2018)

Abstract:

This year marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Marx, and also the 40th anniversary of reform and opening up. Comrade Xi Jinping pointed out: “The destiny of Marxism has long been closely linked with that of the Communist Party of China, the Chinese people and the Chinese nation.” China's reform and opening up is a great social reform under the guidance of Marxism. The great achievements obtained in reform and opening up have fully proved that Marxism is a scientific theory, a theory of the people, a practical theory, and a continuously developing open theory, fully demonstrating the strong vitality of Marxism. In the new era, deepening reform in an all-round way, continuing opening up, and building a modern socialist country in all aspects will surely make Marxism in contemporary China and Marxism in the 21st century more powerful and persuasive with the power of the truth.  

Reform and opening-up have fully proved that Marxism is a scientific theory 

Marx is generally recognized as the “The Greatest thinker of the millennium”. The reason why Marxism has become the glorious thought to promote the development of human society and realizing the emancipation of human beings is firstly because of the scientific nature of Marxism. Marxism has profoundly revealed the universal law of the development of nature, human society and human thinking, and pointed out the direction for the development and progress of human society. The fundamental reason for the great achievements of China's 40 years reform and opening-up lies in always following the laws revealed by Marxism.  

Marxism believes that the productive forces and the relations of production, the economic foundation and superstructure interact and restrict each other, dominating the whole process of social development. This is an objective law. The historic decision of reform and opening-up made at the Third Session of the 11th Central Committee is to stimulate the vitality of social productive forces by adjusting the relations of production, and adapt to the development requirements of economic foundation by improving the superstructure, so as to make socialist modernization more in line with objective laws. In fact, the process of reform and opening up is one in which the Chinese people, led by the Communist Party of China, constantly explore, understand and apply the law in the practice of social reform. In scientifically answering the questions what is socialism and how should we build socialism, the questions what kind of a party we should build and how should we build it, and further the questions what development we will realize and how should we develop, our Party, in the course of Sinicizing Marxism, has formed the Deng Xiaoping Theory, the Important Thought of Three Represents and the Scientific Outlook on Development, continually deepening the cognition of the laws of ruling by Communist Party, of socialist construction and of the development of human society.  

After the 18th National Congress of the CPC, socialism with Chinese characteristics entered a new era. To advance the great social and self-revolution led by the Party in the new era, it is necessary to answer systematically what kind of socialism with Chinese characteristics should be adhered to and developed in the new era, and how to uphold and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics, which is an important subject of the times. It is in the course of systematically answering this major subject of the times that the Xi Jinping’s Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era has been formed. The Xi Jinping’s Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era has adhered to the stand, viewpoint and method Marxism, and to the dialectical materialism and historical materialism, further deepening the laws of ruling by Communist Party, of socialist construction and of the development of human society, promoting the historic change in the undertaking of the Party and the nation, and demonstrating the scientific nature of Marxism of the contemporary China and of the 21st century. In his important speech at the conference commemorating the bicentenary of Marx's birth, Comrade Xi Jinping expounded profoundly on the important tasks of learning Marx, learning and practicing Marxism in the new era in nine aspects. These nine aspects have summarized on the main content of Marxism, embodying our Party's deep understanding of the scientific truth of Marxism. To continue to hold high the great banner of Marxism and open up new horizons of socialism with Chinese characteristics, we must earnestly study and practice these nine aspects.  

Reform and opening-up have fully proved that Marxism is a theory of the people 

The people are the creators of history, which is the fundamental starting point of historical materialism and the essence of Marxist theory. Comrade Xi Jinping pointed out, “Marxism is extensive and profound, which, in the final analysis, means to seek liberation for the mankind.” The reason why Marxism has the influence crossing countries and times is that it is rooted in people and points out the right way of human beings to advance history by the people. Marxism is the theory of the people, and its affinity to the people has been fully demonstrated in China's reform and opening-up.  

Over the past 40 years of reform and opening-up, we have accumulated many successful experiences. One of the most valuable experiences is to respect the initiative of the people, give play to their principal role, and constantly enhance their sense of gain, happiness and security. Whether our people support, agree, like or approve it should be made the fundamental basis for us to formulate policies, and the fundamental criterion to judge the correctness of reform measures. Comrade Deng Xiaoping pointed out that many of the things in rural reform were created at the grassroots level, and we made improvement on them as the guidance for the whole country. Comrade Xi Jinping pointed out that every breakthrough and development in the knowledge and practice of reform and opening-up, the emergence and development of every new thing in reform and opening-up, and the creation and accumulation of experience in every aspect of reform and opening-up all come from the practice and wisdom of hundreds of millions of people. During the reform and opening-up, our Party has always adhered to the unification of the Party's leadership over reform and opening-up and respecting the initiative of the people, and upheld the principle that development is for the people and depends on the people, and the fruits of development are shared by the people. Over the past 40 years, the reform and opening-up has made remarkable achievements despite all kinds of difficulties and setbacks, and one of the mysteries is that our Party has always adhered to the people-orientation of Marxism and always put the people at the top of its mind.  

Comrade Xi Jinping stressed that: “the heavier tasks of reform, development and stability, the more we should strengthen and improve the leadership of the Party, keep the Party's flesh-and-blood ties with the people, be good at by putting forward and implementing the correct lines and policies to lead the people to go forward, at perfecting the policy propositions from the practical creation and development requirement of the people, so that the fruits of reform and development can better and more fairly benefit all our people, and continue to consolidate the mass foundation for deepening the reform and opening-up.” As the socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era, the Party Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core has clearly proposed to commit to a people-centered approach, which profoundly embodies the fundamental purpose of our Party to serve the people wholeheartedly, fully demonstrating the people-orientation of Marxism. The commitment to our people-centered philosophy is one of the basic strategies in upholding and developing socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era. To commit to a people-centered approach in deepening reform in an all-round way, we need to always rely on the people as the forces for reform, firmly break down the institutional and mechanism malpractices and the hedge of fixed interests, stimulate the creativity and development vigor of the whole society, meet the growing expectation of the people for a better life, and endeavor to promote the overall development of human being, the all-round progress of society and common prosperity of the people.  

Reform and opening-up have fully proved that Marxism is a theory of practice 

Marxism is not the learning in a study. Practicality is the distinguishing feature of Marxism from other theories. Marx pointed out that “all social life is practical in essence” “philosophers only interpret the world in different ways, but the problem is changing the world.” Marxism has provided a powerful ideological weapon for China's revolution, construction and reform, and enabled China, an ancient Oriental country, to create a development miracle unprecedented in human history. The 40 years of reform and opening-up is a vivid demonstration of the practicality of Marxism, which fully proves that Marxism is a theory of practice.  

The Communist Party of China adheres to Marxism, not for the sake of prattling about general principle, but for the purpose of understanding and transforming the world, seeking happiness for the Chinese people, rejuvenation for the Chinese nation and great harmony for the world, therefore we must fully realize its practicality. The discussion on the criterion of truth 40 years ago made ideological preparation for the reform and opening-up. The Third Session of the 11th Central Committee re-established the ideological line of seeking truth from facts. To seek truth from facts means putting practice first and to test and develop truth through practice. This is an important magic weapon for the Communist Party of China to carry out reform and opening-up and open up the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics. It is precisely because of adhering to the practicality of Marxism that our Party has closely combined the basic principles of scientific socialism with China's basic national conditions, historical and cultural traditions, and the requirements of the times. It keeps exploring and summarizing in practice and constantly pushes forward the great practice of socialism with Chinese characteristics. The great changes in Chinese society since the reform and opening-up are the great achievements made by the Communist Party of China in leading the Chinese people to understand and transform the world under the guidance of Marxism.  

Since the 18th National Congress of the CPC, Comrade Xi Jinping has repeatedly stressed that “empty talk is harmful to the country and only solid work thrives the country”. As the socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era, every step and aspect of development of socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era should be explored, promoted and completed in the practice of reform and opening-up. In the new era, the principal contradiction facing Chinese society has evolved. What we now face is the contradiction between unbalanced and inadequate development and the people's ever-growing needs for a better life. We should further implement the practicality of Marxism, keep abreast of the changes in the principal contradiction facing Chinese society, and meet the growing needs of the people for a better life. Efforts will be made to solve the problem of unbalanced and inadequate development through comprehensively deepening reform, to win new victories of the socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era.  

Reform and opening-up have fully proved that Marxism is a constantly developing open theory 

Engels pointed out: “the theoretical thinking of each era, including that of our era, is a product of history, and it has completely different forms and also completely different contents in different times.” Marxism is indefectible after one hundred years of vicissitudes, still shining the light of truth, because fundamentally Marxism is an open theory keeping on developing, always standing at the front of the times, with distinctive epochal character, can continuously solve subjects raised by the development of the times, and develop in response to the changing times. As Comrade Xi Jinping pointed out, “a history of Marxism is one of constant development by Marx, Engels and their successors along with the development of the times, practices and cognition, and a history of enriching itself by constantly absorbing all outstanding ideological and cultural achievements in human history.” The reform and opening-up in China have fully proved that Marxism is a constantly developing open theory, always standing at the front of the times.  

Forty years ago, the Third Session of the 11th Central Committee made the historic decision of reform and opening-up. One of the important reasons the Communist was able to lead the Chinese people on the path of reform and opening-up is that our Party has gained a profound insight into the changes of the times and realized a great theoretical awakening. Comrade Deng Xiaoping pointed out: “we must catch up with the times, this is the goal of reform.” In order to catch up with the times, we should not only base ourselves on books, and we should not be rigid and superstitious. Instead, we should emancipate our minds and seek truth from facts. The process of opening up the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics through reform and opening-up is also a process of advancing the sinicization of Marxism with the times. Reform and opening-up is a profound answer given by the Communist Party of China to a series of issues concerning the times based on China's reality and the characteristics of the times. Since then, China has made great strides to catch up with the times and realized the great leap-forward of the Chinese nation from standing up to prosperity. Just as Comrade Xi Jinping pointed out, “Reform and opening-up are the source of vitality for the development and progress of contemporary China, an important magic weapon for our Party and people to make great strides to catch up with the pace of the times, and the only way to uphold and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics.” 

As the socialism with Chinese characteristics enters a new era, the Chinese nation has achieved a tremendous transformation – it has grown rich, and become strong. The new trend and the new features of the times require us to answer and solve the new problems in an in-depth way. The Xi Jinping’s Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, as the latest achievement in adapting Marxism to conditions in China, has systematically answered the major issue of the times: what kind of socialism with Chinese characteristics should be adhered to and developed in the new era, and how to uphold and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics. To uphold Marxism in the new era, we must thoroughly study and carry out the Xi Jinping’s Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, to respond effectively to the major challenges, resist major risks, overcome major resistance, dissolve major contradiction, and solve big problems, continue to win great victory of socialism with Chinese characteristics of the new era, and further demonstrate the strong vitality of Marxism.  

(Author: Vice president of Chinese Association of Political Science, and honorary president of the School of Political Science and Law, Jinan University)


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