One year after Vladimir Lenin died, and three years after Sanger wrote The Pivot of Civilization, Adolph Hitler wrote Mein Kampf from a German prison. Like Lenin and Sanger, Hitler’s worldview was in large part shaped by the fallout of the Enlightenment. We must remember that despite the rhetoric of liberty and democracy during the Enlightenment, the events in France showed us that if God is pushed out of the picture, bloodshed, brute force, and terror soon crush any hope of true liberty. The Enlightenment dream was murdered in France, despite its hope for liberty, because it adopted a philosophical base that not only denied that there was a God, but also actively sought to extinguish any trace of Christianity from society.
In any case, the worldview vision that Hitler laid out in Mein Kampf did not seek to root itself in any kind of traditional Christian faith. Rather, it was yet another step down the inevitable path that Enlightenment thinkers like Rousseau and Voltaire laid down years before. One case easily draw clear connections between the philosophy of Rousseau and Voltaire in the 18th century, the philosophy of Marx in the 19th century, and “hybrid” thinkers like Lenin, Sanger, and Hitler in the early 20th century, who were deeply indebted to Rousseau, Voltaire, and Marx, and then added their new form of Social Darwinism into a truly hideous and evil philosophical worldview.
What Hitler advocated was national socialism. Call it fascism if you want, but the name “national socialism” makes it clear what it was: a nationalized form of the international socialism of Marx, Lenin, and the Communists. The international socialism of the USSR advocated a dictatorship of the proletariat that would restructure all of society on a global scale until the last vestiges of class were annihilated. Hitler’s National Socialism advocated the exact same thing, with one caveat: the goal wasn’t to get rid of classes on a global scale; the goal was to get rid of all non-Aryan races within the borders of the German empire. Other than that, both consisted of a dictatorship that oversaw every aspect of society, and was dedicated to achieving his socialist goals no matter the cost. Hitler even got his idea for his concentration camps from the USSR’s use of the gulag.
Science and Racial Purity
The over-riding motivation in Hitler’s philosophy was obviously racial purity—it was eugenic to the core. It was taking Darwin’s biological theory of evolution and applying it to human beings. Hitler himself wrote: “Man must realize that a fundamental law of necessity reigns throughout the realm of Nature and that his existence is subject to the law of eternal struggle.” Rudolf Hess said, “National Socialism is nothing but applied biology.”
Like Sanger, Hitler envisioned (and later enacted) the Nazi regime forcibly sterilizing masses of “unfit” people that could harm the breeding stock of the Aryan race. But sterilization was too slow for Hitler, so he ended up murdering scores of handicapped and retarded children. In addition, he also targeted other undesirable racial groups, most obviously the Jews.
Also like Sanger (as well as George Bernard Shaw), Hitler did not view his racial program as wrong—in fact, he viewed it as ultimately the moral thing to do for the human race. Along with Sanger (Marx for that matter), Hitler claimed his program was first and foremost “scientific”—and somehow that mere fact made is supposedly “moral.” And so, Hitler used Darwin’s theory of evolution as a justification for his treatment of what he considered “undesirable human beings.”
Hitler also borrowed a little bit from Marx. But whereas Marx saw capitalism and the bourgeoisie as the enemies of mankind, Hitler pointed to the underlying force behind these things, and used the Jews as scapegoats. If Marx claimed economics was the key, Hitler claimed it was race. Capitalism wasn’t the problem—Jewish-run capitalism was the problem! Therefore, Hitler wanted to rid the world of Jews, just like Marx wanted to rid the world of the bourgeoisie. And whereas Marx then envisioned the proletariat taking over the wheels of industry and power (well, a “dictatorship” of the proletariat actually), Hitler envisioned himself—the Fuhrer, the embodiment of the Germanic people and the Aryan race—as taking over the wheels of industry and power.
Hitler, Plato’s Philsopher-King, and a Hatred for Christianity
On this point, it is interesting to note that Hitler had read his Plato. In fact, Hitler saw himself as a perfect example of Plato’s “philosopher-king.” So you name it—Darwin, Marx, the Eugenic movement, even Plato—Hitler used it to serve his own ends and vision. But there was one other thing Hitler used—something that in and of itself, Hitler despised and (like Marx) wanted to crush—Christianity.
Unlike Marx and Lenin, who saw religion as the opiate of the people, Hitler rooted his eugenic/nationalistic philosophy within a religious veneer. On this point, Hitler and the Communists differed on only one thing: the Communists claimed atheism, all the while engaging in a propaganda blitz that elevated men like Lenin and Stalin to god-like, mythic figures. Hitler was not so disingenuous: he wanted religion, so he intentionally portrayed himself as Germany’s messiah, and the Nazi’s purposely stole Christian ceremonies and rituals and re-fashioned them within the Nazi religious worldview. As Benjamin Wiker states in his Ten Books That Screwed Up the World:
“In order to galvanize the German people, Hitler realized that he needed to place before them a new Weltanschauung, or religio-political ideal, ‘an entirely new spiritual order of things’ that could defeat the existing commercial-cosmopolitan worldview of liberalism sapping Germany of its strength. It was precisely the ‘lack of a definite and uniformly accepted Weltanschauung and the general uncertainty of outlook consequent on that lack’ that had caused the Second Reich’s ‘final collapse’” (158).
Hitler the Machavellian, (Not the Christian)
In this regard, Hitler enacted the very type of thing that men like Machiavelli had long since called for: the use of religion to serve the political purposes of the ruler. Nazism was a conglomeration of a wide range of things like Darwinian evolution, Marxist socialism, Nietzsche’s celebration of the German spirit, Plato’s “philosopher-king,” the Eugenic movement, and even Richard Wagner’s mystical revival of Norse mythology.
This needs to be made clear, in order to put an end to the ludicrous claim that Hitler was a Christian. He was a modern-day Machiavelli who was able to take over the state churches in Germany to serve his ends; he was anything but Christian.
Some like to point to the fact that he was baptized into the Catholic church as a baby. They also like to point to some of his quotes, like, “We tolerate no one in our ranks who attacks the ideas of Christianity. Our movement is Christian.” This quote, though, was from 1928. In fact, I’ll venture to say that any quote you can find by Hitler that spoke positively of Christianity came from before he took power. This is important to realize because of the Machiavellian Hitler was: he claimed that Nazism embraced Christianity in order to gain power.
The fact is, though, once Hitler took power, he turned on Christianity. He persecuted any Christian who defied him—Dietrich Bonhoeffer died in a Nazi concentration camp. Fellow pastor of the Confessing Church, Walter Luthi, gave a number of sermons (that are now in a book entitled, Daniel Speaks to the Church) in which he warned his fellow Germans that in Hitler was another manifestation of the beast of Daniel 7.
And indeed, he was. Joseph Goebbels said in 1939, “The Fuhrer is deeply religious, though completely anti-Christian. He view Christianity as a symptom of decay. Rightly so. It is a branch of the Jewish race. Both Judaism and Christianity in the end will be destroyed.” And in 1941, Hitler himself said, “The heaviest blow that ever struck humanity was the coming of Christianity.”
Once he gained power, Hitler revived pagan rites and Nordic festivals, and intentionally co-opted various Christian rituals and re-made them in the image of Nazism. For example, the Nazis held a procession once a year to commemorate the 16 Nazis who had been shot and killed when Hitler first tried to take power in a coup in 1923: it was called “The Procession of the 16 Immortals.” It essentially was a rip off of the Easter procession and the stations of the cross. Along the procession, there were stations that honored the “martyrdom” of these 16 men.
If you want to learn more about the Occult background of Hitler and Nazism, let me suggest the following Discovery Channel video: The Occult Conspiracy. But what I want to emphasize about Hitler and Nazism is that, far from Christian, Hitler was decidedly anti-Christian. And what he put in the place of Christ was a tortured ideology that was a conglomeration of socialism, eugenics, and paganism/Norse mythology.
Hitler put himself in the place of Christ. German school children would sing a song of allegiance to Hitler that said, “Adolph Hitler is our savior and our hero. He is the noblest being in the whole wide world. For Hitler we live. For Hitler we die. Hitler is our lord.” (You can see this in the Occult Conspiracy video, beginning at 38:30).
That “lord” shared an ideology similar to that of the USSR, and took to their logical conclusions the very eugenic measures that figures like Margaret Sanger and playwright George Bernard Shaw yearned for. Nothing can be more chilling.