A decade before his untimely death, Ali Hussin wrote
The Theory of Infinite Struggle[edit | edit source]
Historically, people have had a tendency to put aside ideas offered to them that seem simple or obvious. We think that if theory is not so complicated that we have to hide in the cellar, confused, and ponder it for three or four days then it can't be sound theory. Then when we leave the cellar we're not sure if it's the theory we thought about that we agree with, or some other theory we made up while trying to understand. Or maybe we just get so weary of thinking about it we half-heartedly agree with whatever the theory says.
The theory of infinite struggle is simple and obvious, but should never be put aside. It is theory composed of anarchist, socialist and communist ideas that have been expressed and re-evaluated for over a century. The anarchist community has most clearly come to grips with the idea that struggle is an infinite process. Now lets' get to the theory.
If you were told that there is only one way to look at a tree, you would say that is ridiculous. When you look at a tree from the north, you of course miss the views from the south, east and west. Not to mention the view from above, or the view you get by lying on the ground underneath the tree's branches. Now do we have it all? No, we're totally missing the view from underground which shows us the tree's root system, which is usually as big as the tree itself. Then finally we must look at the tree with our extended peripheral vision. What did the seed look like? How was the seed planted? What will it look like in ten years? The viewpoints of our tree are unlimited.
What does our tree have to do with the theory of infinite struggle? We must approach our theory as we looked at the tree, with multiple viewpoints and an extended peripheral view.
Infinite Struggle Simply Stated[edit | edit source]
So long as human beings exist, engaged in the process of producing, sharing and distributing the necessities of our survival, the basis for corruption, opportunitism and elitism among humans will also exist. This will translate into oppression such as sexism, racism, and classism that we will always need to fight against. The idea that struggle has an infinite aspect to it is necessary to carry out long-term change in the world, in harmony with the naturally occurring development of the earth.
The ways we can create change in the world carry infinite possibilities at every moment in the process. And the struggle is infinite because it will continue throughout the existence of humanity. Until we come to grips with the idea that we ourselves and all human beings in the future will have to fight our whole lives against corruption, opportunism and elitism, we will carry illusions into the struggle that weaken the movement and set people up for failure.
How many times have we heard someone say, "after the Revolution, things will be better because we will be running the government," or "we will have bigger and better factories," et cetera, et cetera, as if everything will be peachy once the Revolution happens. But a revolution does not negate the need for struggle. A revolution is a rupture with the old way. Once that rupture has happened we will have bigger and better opportunities to set up new ways of producing and sharing what we need through cooperation. Revolution will never take away the need for struggle, it just removes many of the obstacles and impediments that slow or block our transformation of the world. People say, "I am hoping the Revolution happens in my lifetime," and then get disillusioned because they were led to believe that the point of activism was the Revolution and if it doesn't happen in their lifetime their efforts are wasted. The Revolution will strengthen and accelerate our political efforts, but every action we do before the Revolution is as crucial as the actions during it and after it.
It is key to understanding the infinite struggle to know that what you do tomorrow morning is as important as what you do the morning of the Revolution we are moving toward - which is as important as what your descendants will do on any given morning 500 years from now after the Revolution has taken place. This is because without your participation in the class struggle and the ecological struggle in the context of infinite struggle we cannot hope to take on the enemies that have created the dangerous situation we live in.
Our other alternative is to give up, disillusioned, and accept that these enemies are killing children all over the world as they rip us off and poison and destroy the planet. But there is no need for passive acceptance.
It is through the building of mass movements, anarchist communities, collectives, cooperatives, federations and communes that we will take direct action and massive action against the opportunists, the capitalists, their state, their property and everything else bad they have created. And "after the Revolution," we need not let their state restore itself. Nor can we allow any benevolent group of reformists or revolutionaries to convince us that they can change society using the shell of what is currently the state. No one will give the earth back to us or to future generations of our children. It is the brave and dedicated who understand that the struggle is infinite and it is a part of our earth walk to fight to take back the earth. This fight will continue always, even after the revolutions that occur.
- Infinite struggle is symbolized by an infinity symbol of two contiguous curves, on Black and one Red. Anarchist colors were chosen because we believe that anarchist ideas are key to making revolutionary change although, like everything else in our movement, they need much development.
Written for Earthwalk by Ali Hussin
To order copies of The Theory of Infinite Struggle, for infinite struggle patches, and for more information, contact Earthwalk at 7088 Lisbon Street, Detroit, MI 48209.