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Quotations from Mao Tse-tung

28. COMMUNISTS

A Communist should have largeness of mind and he should be staunch and active, looking upon the interests of the revolution as his very life and subordinating his personal interests to those of the revolution; always and everywhere he should adhere to principle and wage a tireless struggle against all incorrect ideas and actions, so as to consolidate the collective life of the Party and strengthen the ties between the Party and the masses; he should be more concerned about the Party and the masses than about any private person, and more concerned about others than about himself. Only thus can he be considered a Communist.

"Combat Liberalism" (September 7, 1937), Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 33.*

Every comrade must be brought to understand that the supreme test of the words and deeds of a Communist is whether they conform with the highest interests and enjoy the support of the overwhelming majority of the people.

"On Coalition Government" (April 24, 1945), Selected Works, Vol. III, pp. 316.*

At no time and in no circumstances should a Communist place his personal interests first; he should subordinate them to the interests of the nation and of the masses. Hence, selfishness, slacking, corruption, seeking the limelight, and so on, are most contemptible, while selflessness, working with all one's energy, whole-hearted devotion to public duty, and quiet hard work will command respect.

"The Role of the Chinese Communist Party in the National War" (October 1938), Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 198.

Communists must be ready at all times to stand up for the truth, because truth is in the interests of the people; Communists must be ready at all times to correct their mistakes, because mistakes are against the interests of the people.

"On Coalition Government" (April 24, 1945), Selected Works, Vol. III, pp. 315.

Communists must always go into the whys and wherefores of anything, use their own heads and carefully think over whether or not it corresponds to reality and is really well founded; on no account should they follow blindly and encourage slavishness.

"Rectify the Party's Style of Work" (February 1, 1942), Selected Works, Vol. III, pp. 49-50.

We should encourage comrades to take the interests of the whole into account. Every Party member, every branch of work, every statement and every action must proceed from the interests of the whole Party; it is absolutely impermissible to violate this principle.

Ibid., p. 44.

Communists should set an example in being practical as well as far-sighted. For only by being practical can they fulfil the appointed tasks, and only far-sightedness can prevent them from losing their bearings in the march forward.

"The Role of the Chinese Communist Party in the National War" (October 1938), Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 198.

Communists should be the most far-sighted, the most self-sacrificing, the most resolute, and the least prejudiced in sizing up situations, and should rely on the majority of the masses and win their support.

"The Tasks of the Chinese Communist Party in the Period of Resistance to Japan" (May 3, 1937), Selected Works, Vol. I, p. 274.*

Communists should therefore set an example in study; at all times they should be pupils of the masses as well as their teachers.

"The Role of the Chinese Communist Party in the National War" (October 1938), Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 198.*

Every Communist working in the mass movements should be a friend of the masses and not a boss over them, an indefatigable teacher and not a bureacratic politician.

Ibid. *

Communists must never separate themselves from the majority of the people or neglect them by leading only a few progressive contingents in an isolated and rash advance, but must take care to forge close links between the progressive elements and the broad masses. This is what is meant by thinking in terms of the majority.

Ibid., p. 201.*

We Communists are like seeds and the people are like the soil. Wherever we go, we must unite with the people, take root and blossom among them.

"On the Chungking Negotiations" (October 17, 1945), Selected Works, Vol. IV, p. 58.

We Communists must be able to integrate ourselves with the masses in all things. If our Party members spend their whole lives sitting indoors and never go out to face the world and brave the storm, what good will they be to the Chinese people? None at all, and we do not need such people as Party members. We Communists ought to face the world and brave the storm, the great world of mass struggle and the mighty storm of mass struggle.

"Get Organized!" (November 29, 1943), Selected Works, Vol. III, p. 158.

The exemplary vanguard role of the Communists is of vital importance. Communists in the Eighth Route and New Fourth Armies should set an example in fighting bravely, carrying out orders, observing discipline, doing political work and fostering internal unity and solidarity.

"The Role of the Chinese Communist Party in the National War" (October 1938), Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 197.*

A Communist must never be opinionated or domineering, thinking that he is good in everything while others are good in nothing; he must never shut himself up in his little room, or brag and boast and lord it over others.

"Speech at the Assembly of Representatives of the Shensi-Kansu-Ningsia Border Region" (November 21, 1941), Selected Works, Vol. III, p. 33.*

Communists must listen attentively to the views of people outside the Party and let them have their say. If what they say is right, we ought to welcome it, and we should learn from their strong points; if it is wrong, we should let them finish what they are saying and then patiently explain things to them.

Ibid.

The attitude of Communists towards any person who has made mistakes in his work should be one of persuasion in order to help him change and start afresh and not one of exclusion, unless he is incorrigible.

"The Role of the Chinese Communist Party in the National War" (October 1938), Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 198.

As for people who are politically backward, Communists should not slight or despise them, but should befriend them, unite with them, convince them and encourage them to go forward.

Ibid.


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