Schizophrenia is defined in one way as ‘a situation, state of mind, etc. in which widely conflicting opinions, ideas, or practices coexist, often resulting in indecision, vacillation, wavering, etc.’ In African society the co-existence of the mutually conflicting principles animating the traditional African, Islamic and Euro-Christian thought and practice systems is an uneasy one. In this respect, if these principles are not streamlined through the incorporation of the last two sets into the first, African society will experience pains inflicted by a dangerous spread of schizophrenia. This is at once Kwame Nkrumah’s statement of the African tragedy and its resolution.
The resolution of this tragedy is an instantiation, that is, a particular application, of the set of principles which Nkrumah calls philosophical consciencism. As a philosophy, this latter is a general statement applicable to any country, especially colonies and newly independent as well as developing countries. Its resolution of the African tragedy does not confine it to the resolution of such tragedies. The resolution of problems emanating from any and all infractions on the principle of humanist egalitarianism as well as the promotion of that principle is its permanent cause. It eschews dogmatism as it expresses itself with constants and variables; that is, for example, while it upholds the principle of humanist egalitarianism as a constant cause it upholds communalism, socialism as well as communism as variable causes. The variables are instantiations of the constant.
In its statement, philosophical consciencism expresses itself at the metaphysical, ethical, epistemological and political levels. The treatment of it at such levels is the treatment of the metaphysical, epistemological, ethical and political theories that it enunciates. Under these headlines, therefore, we discuss the statement of philosophical consciencism. Its metaphysics investigates ultimate reality while in epistemology it takes us through the origins, validity and limits of knowledge. With regard to its ethics we have a statement on the nature of morality and judgement while its political theories characterize the nature of the State. It must be stated beforehand that the elaboration of some of these theories will necessarily take us back to the previous chapter since the material in chapter four is quite scanty – this being the result of Kwame Nkrumah’s practice of making assumptions that the reader already knows; in this instance, he has already discussed some of these issues and may be repeating himself if he goes back to them. But we need no such assumptions here if we are to present philosophical consciencism as a full statement – risking repetetion. We gather all the pieces.
Starting then with the statement of its metaphysical world view, let us consider what, initially, is involved in its definition of ‘matter’ in general terms. We will follow this up with detailed explanations of the particular terms in the statement. At page 79 in the second paragraph, it asserts that matter is a plenum of antithetic forces with an absolute and independent existence. A ‘plenum’ is here rendered as a gathering or a meeting point or a complex of those forces. The forces are antithetic in the sense that they are opposites. Each is opposed to the other. This implies tension in matter. At page 84 paragraph 2 the assertion that matter is a plenum of antithetic forces with an absolute and independent existence is elaborated on a step further thus: matter is a plenum of antithetic forces with an absolute and independent existence bearing the capacity for spontaneous self-motion. So that matter is understood here not only as a gathering or a complex of opposites living a complete (absolute) and independent existence but also that it does not require anything to put it in motion in the first place since it has the ability to move by itself. This self-motion is provided by the tension between its opposites. See page 90, the first paragraph. Hence, the elaboration of the definition comes to this: matter is a plenum of antithetic forces in tension with an absolute and independent existence bearing the capacity for spontaneous self-motion. On the basis of this assertion Nkrumah says that philosophical consciencism is deeply materialist.
But the definition does not end there. Among philosophical materialists, there are those who assert the sole reality of matter and those who assert the primary reality of matter. In the assertion of the sole reality of matter no other category of being (existence) is deemed to exist apart from matter. But in the assertion of the primary reality of matter there is an acknowledgement that in addition to matter some other category also exists. This other category is either reducible to matter or ultimately derived from matter as an aspect/property/quality of it. See paragraph 3 of page 84. In the last paragraph of page 87, philosophical consciencism asserts that qualities are generated by matter. This is an assertion of the primary reality of matter. Hence, again, the elaboration of the definition of matter comes to this: matter is a plenum of antithetic forces in tension with an absolute and independent primary existence bearing the capacity for spontaneous self-motion. This is how philosophical consciencism sees and explains ultimate reality in its metaphysics. From here, Kwame Nkrumah defends it against possible objections.
Let us start with the question of matter being endowed with powers of self-motion. The objection raised against philosophical materialism is that unlike mind matter is inert. By this that objection means that matter is incapable of intellectual action, neither thinking, perceiving nor feeling. In fact, matter is said in this respect to be ‘stupid’ – not in the sense that it is slow-witted but rather that it does not have any wit at all. The objection does not only deny matter of this intellectual capability, this mental activity, but also denies it of physical activity or motion. In this latter denial, the objection apparently finds support in Isaac Newton’s scientific denial of the physical activity of matter. According to him, in his first law of motion6, a body (matter) continues in a straight line unless some external force makes an impact on or pushes it. That is, matter has inertia – dead weight.
In his answer to this objection Nkrumah first of all observes that what is meant by ‘inert’ is different from what is meant by ‘inertia’. There is the need to distinguish the two from each other. Newton defined ‘inertia’ axiomatically while the objection differently defined ‘inert’ intellectually. Let us explain. To define a term axiomatically is to clearly explain its meaning with the use of axioms (which are statements that are generally believed to be obvious or true). Nkrumah says that Newton’s definition of ‘inertia’ in his first law of motion is an example of an axiomatically defined term. In that definition it is obvious that a body moving along a straight line continues in that line unless something else pushes it off. In other words, we do not require any evidence to believe what is axiomatically stated. It is not so with what the objection did. With it, there is a search in ‘matter’ for an intellectual parallel to physical motion. The result is not obvious and subject to debate. Hence, the ‘inertia’ of Newton is not the same as the objection’s ‘inertness’: whereas ‘inertia’ for its definition requires axioms ‘inertness’ requires some demonstration for its definition. The difference must be clear.
This preliminary response removes the basis upon which the objection sought to stand; that is, the asserted parallel status of ‘inertness’ with ‘inertia’. That parallel is false. Nkrumah now delves deep into the claim of matter being inert. He sees the objection contradicting itself with its denial of matter’s physical and mental activity. He cites John Locke’s The Essay on Human Understanding as one source of such contradiction. Locke denied therein that matter is active. But in his theory of perception he talked of corpuscles traveling from a perceived object to our appropriate organ of sense in order that we should be able to see, feel, taste, hear or, in a word, perceive it. These corpuscles, he said, detach themselves from the object in which they inhere or of which they are parts and strike our specific sense organs in the fashion of some sort of radiative bombardment. In all this, Locke did not claim that this activity of matter is induced (caused) but said that it is original or natural to matter. So that he portrayed matter as being active. He contradicted himself. In Newton’s case, he conveniently kept silent over the source of the original motion of bodies. But self-motion is implied by those who conceive the universe in terms of an original super-atom which burst asunder due to its own multiplied internal stresses which got to a pitch.
Revealing as these exposures of contradiction in the objection might be they are only to be seen as being combative but not yet constructive. In his constructive elucidation of the endowment of matter with the powers of self-motion Kwame Nkrumah initiates his discussion on the claim of ‘inertness’ with a discourse on motion. There are two major conceptions of motion: it is either a change in relation or a change in property. As a change in relation motion is either linear or rotary, he says. In linear motion an object changes position in relation to other objects in a locality. For example, object ‘A’ stands at a distance of one hundred metres from object ‘B’ in a given locality. It then changes its position and now stands at a distance of two hundred metres from object ‘B’. It is said that by this change of position ‘A’ has moved. Let us consider this other example where ‘B’ revolves asymmetrically (irregularly) around ‘A’. In this case, ‘A’ might be thought of as not having moved. But what difference does it make since in this case too there is a change in position in accordance with the irregularity of change in position of ‘B’ in its relation to ‘A’? In both cases, the respective distances are the same. Thus, the latter case cannot constitute (be) an objection to the former; both of them have identity in meaning.
Regarding change in properties, Nkrumah is implicit in one respect and explicit in the other. At page 80 where he identifies alteration of properties as one of the two broad categories of motion he does not explicitly explain what is involved in this kind of motion. We need to read between the lines to know this. And reading between the lines and subsequent paragraphs we see him talking about two forms of change in properties. Let us illustrate the first in the following way. When we say that ‘Ngozi has no sister’ we are asserting ‘no sister’ or better still ‘non sister’ as a property of Ngozi. In other words, ‘non sister’ is the predicate of the subject ‘Ngozi’. If Ngozi’s mother gives birth to a baby girl we will then say that ‘Ngozi has a sister’. Here, ‘a sister’ becomes the predicate or property of the subject ‘Ngozi’. What has happened now is a change of property: from ‘non-sister’ to ‘a sister’. This kind of change has nothing to with Ngozi’s body itself. It does not also involve Ngozi’s change of positions. In a certain sense this change is also relational. The illustration of the second form of change or alteration of properties involves a change in Ngozi’s body itself. In this case we are talking about change in Ngozi’s body but not in relation to any other body; that is, we are now talking about the kind of change that involves an object’s change of colour from red to non-red, for instance. The first form of change of properties, signifying change in relation, and linear-rotary change in relation, where change in position is involved, are not implied when we talk of self-motion, Nkrumah says. Self-motion has to do with the object or body itself but not in its relation to any other object or body. In this instance, the object generates qualities/properties by itself as when it changes colour.
Self-motion is asserted in terms of internal activity, activity within the object but not in terms of external pressures on the object. That is why Nkrumah says, by way of an example, that those who conceive the universe in terms of an original super-atom which multiplied internal stresses to such a pitch as to burst asunder imply that matter has this power of self-motion as they never suggest that this primordial (original) building-up of internal stresses was due to some external forces. He also cites radiation and wave mechanics of quantum theory as clear examples of the original powers of self-motion of matter. The spontaneity of emissions in radiation is the main consideration here. Yes, there is no discernment of a direct phenomenon of radiation or corpuscular motion by any of our known five senses as against the observable phenomena of seeing apples thrown to go up and feathers blown to make them air-borne: but ignorance (limitation of knowledge) in respect of what is involved in radiation cannot be the determination of what is possible (what can be).
But there are those who claim that the spontaneous activity of matter is due to some Spirit or Soul (as different from mind) hiding in it. Nkrumah suggests that even if this were so it cannot be said that in every case of spontaneous motion in phenomena we must presume the presence of some Spirit. This claim does not only easily strengthen and defend the case for vitalism and various forms of occultism but also raises the issue of deliberateness, purpose, or intention. It was thought, Nkrumah says, that spontaneous motion could only be deliberate, with purpose – implying intention and that it was supposed to be the attribute of some, not all, living things. Within this context, since matter was considered to be non-living, it was denied the capability of deliberateness, purpose or intention. No form of spontaneity could, therefore, be ascribed to it. Depending on where one stands on the considerations of the spontaneous emission of particles of matter and Newton’s silence as to the source of the original motion of bodies one can either embrace a thorough-going animism by way of infusing non-living matter with a profusion (plethora) of Spirits or correctly reject the now groundless denial of the capacity of matter for self-motion, Nkrumah says.
We stated above that self-motion has to do with the object itself but not in its relation with other objects. It might therefore appear contradictory to say that matter is capable of self-motion both in the sense of change of relation and in the sense of change of property, as Nkrumah does in the first paragraph of page 84. No, Sir/Madam. We easily remember that he complains that Newton does not tell us anything about the source of the original motion of bodies: we are not told why bodies move the way they do although we are told why they keep moving the way they do. By focusing our attention on the source, Nkrumah does not deny change of relation but rather enhances our understanding as to why this change of relation is possible. In its movement from one position to the other as well as in its change of one property to the other, the object is so propelled by its own internal exertions. By these internal exertions or stresses dialectical change is made possible. What does this mean?
Please, turn to paragraph one of page 90. Here, Nkrumah categorically states that without self-motion there could be no dialectical change; dialectical change would be impossible. He says that by dialectical change he means the emergence of a third factor from the tension between two factors. He classifies these factors into what he calls logical types. Matter as a factor, for example, belongs to one logical type while the properties and qualities that matter generates belong to another logical type on a higher plain. Properties generated by previous properties belong to a still higher logical type. This classification does not relate to any scale of value or, if you like, a scale of importance to determine which of these factors is more important. It only indicates the sequence in the generation of types. And in this generation of types, factors at the same level of generation undergo such internal tension that produces the higher or next logical type. Hence, tension within matter produces qualities and properties. The tension in ice produces water and the tension in water produces vapour, for another example. We shall come back to this in our discussion of the epistemology of consciencism.
At this point, after this consideration of self-motion, let us consider the assertion of matter as a ‘plenum of antithetic forces’. First, what are ‘forces’? Nkrumah gives us what he means by ‘forces’ here. In the first few sentences that open up page 90 we are told that ‘force’ is not a description of a particle of matter or something that the particle wears. Force is internal to the particle and it is the way in which particles exist. What does this mean? Does it mean that particle is force? If we opt for this then that will amount to a collapse of the predicate into the subject? Are force and particle different entities in the statement ‘Force is internal to the particle’? What of ‘Force is the way in which particles exist’? Let us consider a statement like ‘Ice is a way in which water exists’. We do not by this assert the existence of two different entities such that given the same quantity of water if we have it in its ice state we can at the time have it in its state of water, do we? By that although water is not ice we do not say that there is an implication of two existences when we say that ‘Ice is a way in which water exists’. If we do not then similarly we are not to presume that the similar assertion that ‘Force is the way in which particles exist’ infers two existences. The apparent problem is only one of idiom where force is said to be internal to particle. At page 83, Nkrumah encounters Thales similarly.
A ‘plenum’ is ordinarily understood as ‘a meeting for all members of a particular group’. Here, a plenum of forces would mean the massing up of forces which therefore gather at a point to constitute a whole. A plenum of forces would thus mean a mass of forces or a convergence of forces. Nkrumah says in the last paragraph of page 97 that philosophical consciencism agrees with the traditional African standpoint that everything that exists, exists as a complex of forces. The assertion of matter as a plenum of forces is therefore an assertion of matter as a complex of forces. In consciencism, therefore, a ‘plenum’ means something more than a ‘convergence’. It is a complex. The forces, furthermore, are in a relationship of tension with each other. Hence, the statement that ‘matter is a plenum of forces in tension’ is appropriately understood as ‘matter is a complex of forces in tension’.
It is this tension that holds matter together. It is not, as a particular tension, however, permanent as the relative balance that it occasions between and among the forces gets upset and is replaced by a new type of balance which creates its own tension to hold matter together. Forces in tension, according to consciencism, are essential to whatever exists; to this extent, tension is permanent in its generality. The placid or serene appearance of matter only disguises the tension of forces underlying that appearance, so says Nkrumah at page 99 in the third paragraph. The forces in tension are the source of the original power of self-motion that matter is endowed with. It is this endowment that enables matter to initiate qualitative and substantial changes and hence make dialectical changes possible. But if ‘forces in tension’ are the source of the self-motion of matter the source of the tension is located in the opposition of the forces to each other. To render this opposition philosophically we say that the forces are antithetic to each other. Hence, we have ‘a plenum of opposing forces in tension’ or ‘a complex of opposing forces in tension’ or ‘a plenum of antithetic forces in tension’. They carry the same meaning.
At the political-historical level, if we might illustrate this, Ghanaian society exhibits a tension between what we might generally categorize as the Nkrumaist and Danquaist forces. The opposition of these forces creates a particular tension in society. Out of this tension political transformations have taken place and continue to unfold. The Ghanaian society of today is different from what it was in the colonial days. The appearance of a serene or peaceful society that attracts foreign investors to it disguises this tension between the said political forces. At a certain level, these changes that have taken place in Ghanaian society are initiated by these forces internal to it. Charges of some of these forces having collaborated with foreign powers to effect certain changes confirm that the changes were, in the first place, initiated by the local forces. This suggests the society as being in self-motion occasioned by local political forces in tension. But since self-motion does not preclude change of relation the continued presence of the long hand of foreign powers in the affairs of the country cannot be discounted but considered as operational only at the level of secondary and not primary activity. Neo-colonialism is possible only when some local forces allow foreign powers to influence them. The decision is the former’s. (Remember that Kwame Nkrumah does not dispute the principle of the participation of one object in the other object or objects and vice versa. He endorses it at the fundamental level in the conception of socialism. He does not explicitly employ it in Consciencism in the relations between nations. It is only implicit in it. But in Africa Must Unite he applies it at the secondary level of foreign relations where a nation could solicit for foreign investment for mutual benefit without compromising the nation’s independence.)
This brings us to the issue of the ‘primary existence’ of matter. What, again, does this mean? In its simplest terms the primary existence of matter means that matter does not depend on anything conceivable for its existence. It is not derived from anything else nor is it reducible to any such thing. This might be said to be a negative definition as it is all stated in negatives. Its positive statement might be rendered in this way: matter is the basis from which all other categories of being (existence) are derived and to which they are reducible. The implications of this are far reaching. One, it is implied that the human mind, as far as it is asserted as a category of being, is derived from matter. Two, it is implied that spiritual beings like God and Satan, as far as they are asserted as categories of being, are emergent from matter. Three, it is implied that space, to the extent that it is real, derives its properties from those of matter. But in order that matter is asserted as a primary category it must be absolute and independent. This is why Nkrumah says at page 88, paragraph 2 that if space were absolute and independent matter could not with respect to it be primary. Philosophical consciencism, he states categorically, asserts the primary reality of matter. See the same paragraph.
In his categorical assertion of matter as a primary reality, Nkrumah rejects the assertion of the sole reality of matter by those whom he describes as extreme materialists. By this he does not only explicitly say that the assertion of the sole reality of matter is atheistic but also that, with it, dialectical change becomes impossible. It is only by the assertion of the primary reality of matter that dialectical change is possible. Here, the actual dispute is with respect to the solution of the mind-body problem which Nkrumah explains in the following way: if one says that there are only two types of substances, matter and mind, and furthermore allows interaction between them, then the question arises how there can be interaction between substances that are so disparate. He says that the problem is solved by the extreme materialists with the assertion that there is, in fact, no mind but only matter. In the same way, idealists solve it with the assertion that there is, in fact, no matter but mind. Consciencism, on the other hand, accepts the challenge and accepts that there is, in fact, this interaction of mind and body (matter). The interaction, it holds, is demonstrated in the possibility of categorial conversion.
This acceptance of the interaction of mind and body might seem to suggest that its implied acceptance of mind and body (matter) as realities makes consciencism a dualist philosophy. Nkrumah rather holds it up as a monist philosophy. He makes the point with striking a distinction between Descartes’ dualism which involves a parallelism whereby the interaction is false (denied) and his monist position whereby the interaction is explained by way of categorial conversion. Descartes claims that when the body is damaged the consequent pain is the grief that the soul (mind) feels. Here, parallel events take place such that the first occurs in the body and the second occurs in mind which takes notice of the first event. Nkrumah objects to this as an interaction with the assertion that unless we find knowledge to be painful the mind could not be said to grieve upon taking notice of the damage. Descartes does not say that the body affects the mind but that the mind feels sympathy for (commiserates with) the body. No interaction, in fact.
On Nkrumah’s part he explains that consciencism has no room for mere parallelism. Qualities, for it, are generated by matter. Given any particular quality we have a certain arrangement or order (disposition) of matter that gives rise to it. We have illustrated how an increase in the oxygen component in carbon monoxide gives rise to the qualitatively different compound carbon dioxide. Quality is a surrogate (representative) for a certain disposition of matter. Colour, for instance, is tied to the appropriate or particular (characteristic) wave-length. It is the visual surrogate of a wave-length. It is not the wave-length itself. In its general formulation, consciencism asserts that sensations and perceptions are sensory surrogates of quantitative dispositions of matter. This is the same as saying that natural properties or whatever property is discernible by way of one sense or more are just sensory representatives (surrogates) of some quantitative arrangements (dispositions) of matter. See pages 87 to 88. The connection between the two categories of matter and qualities/properties (mind) is tight, ensuring their interaction and debunking any notion of parallelism. Hence, consciencism cannot be accused of dualism. It stands at one with monism.
The metaphysics of philosophical consciencism thus projects a world outlook by which ultimate reality is asserted to be matter with its laws of motion that enable it to generate other categories of being (existence). Matter carries the definition, consequently, as a plenum of antithetic forces in tension with an absolute and independent primary existence bearing the capacity for spontaneous self-motion. Being materialist, consciencism stands up to all possible objections that philosophical idealism, when raised against it, cannot consistently answer. For instance, only philosophical consciencism is capable of giving us a natural explanation of the apparently difficult concept of God. By its implication of the objective materiality of God it makes phrases like ‘the mind of God’ meaningful as against the idealist position that renders that phrase a tautology. Since philosophical idealism does not recognize the objective materiality of God and rather asserts it as ‘Mind’ that phrase, for it, strictly translates as ‘the mind of Mind’ – an unabashed and unforgivable tautology. In order that man might metaphorically be the image of God the two categories must ultimately be of the same substance.
Kwame Nkrumah derives this metaphysical position of consciencism from the traditional African standpoint. We feel obliged to quote the last paragraph of page 97 for its simple and straight-forward statement to this effect:
‘The traditional African standpoint, of course, accepts the absolute and independent idea of matter. If one takes the philosophy of the African, one finds that in it the absolute and independent existence of matter is accepted. Further, matter is not just dead weight, but alive with forces in tension. Indeed, for the African, everything that exists, exists as a complex of forces in tension. In holding force in tension to be essential to whatever exists, he is, like Thales and like philosophical consciencists, endowing matter with an original power of self-motion, they were endowing it with what matter would need to initiate qualitative and substantial changes.’
For exhibiting this power and superiority over philosophical idealism and other forms of philosophical materialism, Nkrumah says that the African experience must be the base that must accommodate the Euro-Christian and Islamic presence; that is, the latter experiences must be reduced to the African experience to resolve the tension in the relations between these three segments that threatens the African conscience with schizophrenia. This requires the interpretation of the Euro-Christian and Islamic presence in terms of the principles of traditional African society and, therefore, of consciencism. This involves a reductionism that will necessarily mean some loss as processes of conversion necessitate the loss of some mass. See paragraph 2 of page 89.
This loss of mass in the dialectical process of conversion needs to be explained to finalize this discourse on consciencist metaphysics. Let us look at that paragraph. The thought here is extremely profound. Kwame Nkrumah says that the categories derived from matter are not ghosts (apparitions). They are real in the sense that their derivation by way of the conversion of matter shows a certain loss of mass of matter. That is, conversion leads to a loss of mass of the initial matter. He cites Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity in support. According to him, it follows from that Theory that every chemical change from simpler substances to more complex ones whereby new properties emerge involves the loss of mass. In the process of the chemical change, although the entire amount (mass) of matter is converted it is only a part of it that is converted into new properties with the rest being lost as heat. The new properties constitute a higher logical type which really exist and are, therefore, not empty apparitions. He puts it this way from the first paragraph of page 89:
‘… if the conversion from one category to another category is not to represent a mere apparition … then such a conversion must represent a variation in the mass of its initial matter. The conversion is produced by a dialectical process, and if it is from a lower logical type to a higher logical type, it involves loss of mass…. (I)f higher categories are only surrogates of quantitative processes of matter, they are still not empty apparitions, but are quite real.’
If we might illustrate this in social terms it means that the conversion of the conflicting principles that animate the Euro-Christian, Islamic and traditional African segments of modern society to one that eliminates the conflict will not only produce a qualitatively different and harmonious society without such conflicts but also lead to a loss of some of the features of these three segments of African society.
Matter is thus a plenum of antithetic forces in tension with an absolute and independent primary existence bearing the capacity for spontaneous self-motion. It renews itself through a dialectical process of developing new properties as it eliminates old ones. By this, everything is in constant change.
Let us now turn to the epistemology of philosophical consciencism. If metaphysics seeks to determine the nature of ultimate reality, epistemology seeks to investigate the origins, validity and the limits of our knowledge. Nkrumaist or consciencist epistemology does not only determine the origin, validity and limits of knowledge but also connects this knowledge with action. At page 90, paragraph 3, Nkrumah states the first part of this assertion as a concern with the nature of knowledge and its types as well as the avenues by which the mind gets access to them. Hence, we expect to find in consciencism definite statements as to, one, the nature of knowledge, two, the types of knowledge, and, three, the avenues by which the mind gets access to these types of knowledge. For the most part, however, we cannot find such definite statements. They are implied. In the first instance, the nature of knowledge is implied in paragraph 2 of page 92 as the reflection of unfolding matter. This reflection is expressed in terms of concepts. Thus, knowledge is a conceptual image of unfolding nature. Thus, again, with nature being in constant change so is knowledge undergoing a constant change.
Rationalists like Spinoza also assert knowledge as a conceptual image of nature but they see it as a blue-print; that is, as that from which or according to which nature is formed. As such they say that the order and connection of ideas is the same as the order and connection of nature. Consciencism does not dispute that the order and connection of ideas is the same as the order and connection of nature. To assert that this means that our knowledge is a blue-print for nature, however, is mistaken as it places nature in a straight-jacket and as such rather than nature (matter) being conceived as a primary reality it is projected as a secondary phenomenon. Consciencism rather asserts that just as knowledge reflects nature so also does nature reflect knowledge. At page 92 in the last paragraph it asserts that instead of the rationalists seeing knowledge as a blue-print they should rather assert the mutual reflection between knowledge and nature, of course with nature being the primary reality. Once nature gives rise to knowledge, knowledge also intervenes in nature through action to transform it. We would come back presently to deal with the connection between knowledge and action.
Let us here proceed to consider the view of consciencism on the limits of knowledge. Consciencism is uncomfortable with the identification of the limits of our knowledge with what can be. See page 82. To do that abandons the absolute and independent primary reality of matter bearing the powers of spontaneous self-motion. It is not even compatible with science and research. Matter unfolds. As it unfolds the mind acquires knowledge of it. Knowledge, through action, then acts on matter. Through this interaction new knowledge of developed matter is generated. Clearly then, knowledge always lags behind the development of matter; hence, the need for research to update knowledge. To suggest that the limits of knowledge are identical with what can be is to overlook this fact of knowledge rather always being identical with what has been. The very act of discovery presupposes the enrichment of knowledge after the fact or event. (At pages 166-167 of Africa Must Unite , Kwame Nkrumah’s book to which Consciencism stands as its abstraction, Nkrumah writes clearly that ‘The economic theories that have emanated from people have been erected out of experience … They were not evolved as guide in advance of economic development, but were the result of analysis of that development after the event. Even Lenin’s theory of imperialism issued from his study of the growth of capitalism and its monopolistic expansion.’ Emphasis added.) It is also known that although many wills are exercised on the basis of knowledge to produce an event the resultant is always what nobody willed. It is all as if an independent force produced the event; this being a very powerful testimony to the fact of matter’s powers of spontaneous self-motion. Society develops upon the exercised wills of individuals and groups armed with their knowledge, but it always develops in a way that none of them envisioned.
This brings us to the types of knowledge that consciencism identifies. Strategically, it identifies types of being (existence) with logical types. At page 90, paragraph 3, Nkrumah says that types of being are logical types. With logical types, we have a statement, then a statement about the statement, then a statement about the statement about the statement. Each of these statements is a logical type, lower or higher. Material objects, thus, belong to one logical type; general terms, which can be applied in description only to material objects, form a higher logical type: and general terms, which can be applied in description to general terms of the first group, form yet a higher logical type. Let us try an illustration of each of these. One, let us take a mango fruit and say ‘This is a mango’; it is of the first or primary logical type. Two, let us say that ‘The mango is ripe’; being ripe is of the secondary logical type and placed higher than the mango. Three, let us say that ‘The ripe mango is rotten’; being rotten is of the tertiary logical type. Now, we observe that ‘ripe’ is a general term used to describe mature fruits that are ready to be eaten. We then observe that ‘rotten’ is a general term used to describe the state of ripeness of fruits. These suggest a scale of being of a mango, a material object; that is, they indicate the different forms or levels of existence of the mango, the material object. Nkrumah explains that a scale of being is not to be understood as a scale of value. It is a scale of logical types. That is, a statement is made ‘This is a mango’. It is then followed by the statement ‘The mango is ripe’ which amounts to a statement on ‘This is a mango’. This second statement is also followed by the third statement ‘The ripe mango is rotten’ which amounts to a statement on ‘The mango is ripe’. Hence, we have a statement, a statement on the statement and then a statement on the statement on the statement. These statements are called logical types on a scale of highs and lows.
We can observe that in the example above we are talking about a material object and its properties. Consciencism asserts that the material object and its properties respectively belong to different logical types. Just in the same way, material objects (matter) and mind belong to different logical types. That they belong to different logical types can also be seen from the fact that certain couplings (combinations) of them produce such special absurdities that Nkrumah calls categorial absurdities. A categorial absurdity arises when terms that should not be combined are combined. For instance, in the proposition ‘The number two is red’ we see that the combination of ‘two’ and ‘red’ produces an obvious meaninglessness – an absurdity. This is because they belong to different logical types such that they are at least two steps away from each other on the scale of highs and lows. That is to say that where, on the scale, two terms are, at least, two steps apart they cannot be coupled (combined). To avoid such categorial absurdities only terms that are of the same logical type or close to each other (proximate types) can be combined. See pages 90 – 91.
There is a practical significance of recognizing logical types. For instance, with the recognition of logical types it becomes possible to conduct mental research by way of neural research; it becomes possible to investigate the nature of mind by way of investigating the nature and functioning of brain. Research into the nature of one category is made possible in terms of research into another category. Mind and the mental are not subject to experimental exposure; there is no direct way of conducting any experiment on them. We have seen that philosophical consciencism understands mind as a surrogate of matter. In the first paragraph of page 91, Nkrumah states that there is nothing which is incapable of translation, without residue, to propositions about items whose surrogates they are. What is the meaning of this? It means that propositions about anything that is a surrogate (like mind) of an item (like matter) can be completely reduced to propositions (statements) about the item. With this meaning in mind, consider this direct quote from paragraph 3 of the same page: … as mind is not subject to experimental exposure, if all propositions about mind are in principle translatable without residue to propositions about the nervous system, which is subject to experimental exposure, then a great deal of mental research can be done in terms of neural research. In fact, philosophical consciencism makes this kind of research possible.
Consciencist epistemology, this far, has stated its positions on the nature of knowledge, which it asserts as a reflection (an image) of unfolding matter. On the limits of knowledge, which it bases on the fact of knowledge being a reflection of unfolding matter, it asserts that knowledge lags behind the unfolding (development) of matter and therefore cannot be identified with what can be. It is identified with what has been. Finally, it conceives the types of knowledge as logical types on a scale of highs and lows. It is at this point that consciencism connects knowledge with action. In the light of his constant assertion of a social contention in philosophy it should not be surprising that Kwame Nkrumah would connect knowledge with action. But he does not, out of such anxiety, just declare the need for action. He provides the philosophical basis of action. At page 92, in the last sentence of paragraph 1, he states that when philosophy, that is, knowledge, restricts itself as a reflection of matter it also establishes a direct connection between itself and action. At page 93 in the first sentence, knowledge is asserted as the direct objective basis of an intervention in nature. Kwame Nkrumah then explains that the connection between knowledge and action is not mechanistic. What does this mean? It means that the kind of action that knowledge occasions is not automatic; knowledge does not lead to a specific action. The kind of action taken on the basis of knowledge is subjected to ethical influence and comment. If we might put it in other words, ethics mediate between knowledge and action. Hence, given some particular knowledge different people take different actions depending on the ethical choices that they make.
This is where consciencism comes to discuss its position on ethics. Beginning from paragraph 1 of page 93, Nkrumah is swift to make it clear that we cannot expect from consciencism a closed set of ethical rules or, if you like, a set of ethical rules which must apply in any society and at any time. This is so because of its metaphysical view of matter whereby matter is seen as inexorably undergoing dialectical evolution or change. Consciencism cannot freeze its ethical rules with changelessness. In saying this, it means that ethical rules keep changing in response to changing conditions of life. It, however, strikes a difference between ethical rules and ethical principles and shows how they relate to each other such that the rules depend on the principles. Ethical rules might change while ethical principles remain unchanged. Ethical rules are formulated on the basis of ethical principles. Like by-laws, which are particular applications of statutes, ethical rules are particular applications of ethical principles. Just as by-laws might be changed due to a change in the conditions that they are meant to regulate without a change of the statutes on which they were formulated or enacted so also might ethical rules be changed due to a change in the conditions that they are meant to regulate without a change of the ethical principles on the basis of which they were sanctioned.
Lest this might be misunderstood to suggest that ethical principles, on their part, do not change, Nkrumah explains that they also change; but that such a change constitutes a revolution. This type of change involves a total change of ethics whereby the principles as well as the rules change. When consciencism refers to change in ethics it refers to one that involves both ethical rules and ethical principles. At page 95, paragraph 3 Nkrumah is again swift to point out that at times ethical (moral) rules are changed so startlingly that an impression is created of a revolution in ethics. That is no revolution. The change must affect the principles of ethics for any serious talk about revolution to make sense. It is for this reason that Nkrumah says that for a capitalist society to become a socialist one it must have changed its ethics. Apart from this, he cites an example that might be quite illusive. He says that in our study of the psychology of delinquency we might come by some results that might diminish our disgust towards delinquents. In such situations, we might re-classify delinquent acts while the moral or ethical rules relating to those acts remain, not waived. So that when the media becomes awash with claims of a revolution in the Middle East, a consciencist focuses on what ethical principles have changed.
This brings us to the ethical principles of consciencism. In the last but one paragraph of page 95, Kwame Nkrumah makes a statement of the cardinal ethical principle that is fundamental to consciencist ethics. According to this very important ethical principle, man is treated as an end in himself and not merely as a means to an end. In consciencist ethics, therefore, man is projected as an end in himself and not a tool for the realization of an end. Man is the end itself. This cardinal ethical principle is fundamental to the socialist or humanist conception of man and derived from the materialist viewpoint by way of the egalitarianism that is asserted to be the social reflection of materialism. That is to say that, according to Kwame Nkrumah, the said cardinal ethical principle is immediately derived from egalitarianism and ultimately from materialism out of which egalitarianism emerged.
At page 96, paragraph 2, it is asserted that it is the basic unity of matter which gives rise to egalitarianism. Man is basically one because all men have the same basis and are the products of the same evolution. This is the nature of man. Philosophical consciencism founds its ethics on this philosophical idea of the nature of man. That is to say that the cardinal ethical principle of consciencism is founded on a philosophical idea of the nature of man. Kant, according to Nkrumah, described this as ethics based on anthropology. While Kant disapproved of basing ethics on anthropology, Nkrumah states that this is exactly what philosophical consciencism does, without apologies. He defends his position in a response to David Hume. According to David Hume, ethical philosophy, such as philosophical consciencism’s, begins with statements of fact (for instance, those of a study like anthropology) and suddenly seeks to base statements of appraisal on them. David Hume regrets that no explanation is given for making such an inference (derivation). The nature of the problem is this: if you say that ‘This is a mango’ (a fact) how do you come to say that ‘This mango is good’ (an appraisal)? Or, which is the same thing: if you say that ‘Man is one’ (a fact) how do you come to say that ‘Man being one is good’ (an appraisal)?
But Nkrumah offers an explanation. He says that if man is basically one and if action is truly (objectively) attentive to this fact then action must be guided by principles so as to make it (the action) conform to this fact and prevent it from taking a course that might suggest that man is rather basically different. Let us closely scrutinize the structure of the argument in the following way and simplify it thus:
1. If man is one then action must conform to maintain man
2. Man is one.
3. Therefore, action must conform to maintain man as one.
There was difficulty on our part to determine the kind of argument that this one was. We were sure that it was a type of the deductive but the ‘must’ in the premise made it difficult to do so. So we submitted the question ‘What kind of argument is this?’ to Yahoo! Answers to be helped out. Two important responses were received. The first by Neshy said: ‘This argument is attempting to be deductive (i.e. trying to deduct a conclusion from a premise). However it is weak as no reasons are provided for the premise to be believed in, and the conclusion is self-evident.’ Clearly, Neshy has problems with it. He would want to have reasons why he should believe that ‘If man is one then action must conform to maintain man as one’. Let us consider his objection. In case we say that ‘If a woman’s husband is one then the woman’s action must conform to maintain husband as one’. To avoid varied interpretations rendered of this conditional statement let us say that the intended meaning is that if in a particular society a woman is allowed only one husband then her action (behaviour) must conform to maintain a single husband and not behave as if she has more than one husband.
Given this specific understanding would we need to give reasons for saying that ‘If a woman’s husband is one then the woman’s action must conform to maintain the husband as one’? We hazard to assert the affirmative and for these reasons. One, we need to convince Neshy that in the said society it is a fact that a woman is allowed only one husband; that is to say that the statement ‘A woman’s husband is one’, in the first half of the conditional, is true; that is, it has the truth value T, as logic would put it. Two, we also need to convince him that in the said society it is a fact that a woman conforms to maintain only one husband; that is to say that the statement ‘The woman’s action must conform to maintain the husband as one’, in the other half of the conditional, is true – has the truth value T. The logical principle of material implication rules that where both statements in a conditional are true the entire conditional is true. In fact, according to the second response we received from Yahoo! Answer, this kind of argument ‘is called a circle silliquey and is a very common literary device.’
Our initial problem with ‘must’ in the conditional is resolved when we understand that philosophical consciencism does not, in saying that ‘If man is one then action must conform to maintain man as one’, claim to be making an original prescription for ethical conduct. It tells us that it is adopting an ethical practice emanating from traditional African humanist egalitarianism whereby as a member of society one must treat man as one but not as if originally one man physiologically and socially differs from any other man. The ‘must’ involved here is not a logical ‘must’ but one of a command in traditional African society. In so doing, philosophical consciencism, in the first instance, only describes what pertains in traditional African society and then, and only and then, does it call for its adoption. We might see that the latter action is one of a secondary prescription that only endorses the original prescription whereby on the basis of traditional Africa’s conception of the nature of man as one a command was made for man to be treated as such. In its description of the ethical principle of traditional Africa and its adoption of it we see in philosophical consciencism a descriptive-prescriptive act of the second order.
David Hume might still not be satisfied because his problem is with the first order which carries the original prescription. Specifically, he is concerned with a command that is not logically, that is, by logical necessity, implied by the fact that man is one. If the command were logically necessary then a command of an opposite nature would not be capable of being implied by the same fact. That is, it is also possible to say that ‘If man is one then action must differentiate man’. This would mean that although man is one, for the good of society, man must be differentiated. An expanded version of the conditional would be ‘If man is one then, for the good of society, action must differentiate man’. In fact, the previous conditional ‘If man is one then action must conform to maintain man as one’ actually says ‘If man is one then, for the good of society, action must conform to maintain man as one’. Now, just as we observed that both statements in this conditional are true in traditional Africa so also can we observe that the two statements in the other conditional are true in capitalist America.
Hence, two opposite conditionals with the same premise that ‘man is one’ are, on the strength of the logical principle of material implication, both true. This is one paradox of material implication. The absurdity of this situation shows why David Hume is so concerned. And Kwame Nkrumah is aware of this problem when, at page 34 in paragraph 2, he observes that: The assertion of the fundamental equality and brotherhood of man does not automatically issue in socialism; and at page 49 he affirms that: … individualism may lead to capitalism or it may lead to socialism. That is, the same premise can have different implications. Hence, whereas David Hume is concerned with an unproblematic logical derivation it is not so with Nkrumah who is concerned with making an ethical choice. Consciencism might appeal to the controversial circle silliquey literary device to make a case for the logical status of its cardinal ethical principle. The fact still remains that ethical choices are not applications in logic. Hence, Western illogicalities in Middle East and other regional political affairs are replete in contemporary history.
Whence, therefore, are ethical choices made? On what basis are they made? In a word, they emanate from social interests. In mediating between knowledge and action, ethics prejudice action in service of a particular social interest; either a national interest against a foreign interest or a class interest against another class interest or an individual interest against another such interest etc. In this respect, the cardinal ethical principle of consciencism that treats man as an end in himself and not as a tool to an end is directed against exploitation in all of its forms, foreign and domestic, in service of the national interest. It is this ethical principle that influences action to impact on the environment for the creation of a non-exploitative society. It is, in this respect, the national interest that forms the basis of this ethical choice against exploitation to create a society in which man is treated as an end and not merely as a means. Kwame Nkrumah says that with the acceptance of this ethical principle the need arises for the creation of institutions to regulate the behaviour and actions of a large variety of people in society for the conservation of that principle. This is where ethics, he says at page 98, transits to politics. For, politics create those institutions. It is from this stage that philosophical consciencism enunciates its political theory. Let us get to it.
The conservation of the fundamental ethical principle of the initial worthiness of each individual is the aim of institutions created to regulate the behaviour and actions of the plurality of men in society. To this effect, philosophical consciencism adumbrates (that is, outlines) a political theory and a social-political practice to ensure, together, the effectiveness of cardinal ethical principles. The application of the cardinal ethical principle that treats man as an end and not a means predisposes consciencism to seek to prevent the emergence or solidifying of classes in African society. The existence of classes, whereby one class of individuals is subjected to another class of individuals that exploits it, is contrary to the cardinal ethical principle of consciencism. It is on the basis of this ethical foundation that consciencism builds its political theory and social-political practice. See paragraphs 1 and 2 of page 98. In what follows, we treat the text in a way that distinctly makes explicit what is involved in the political theory and what is also involved in the social-political practice.
First, we begin with the political theory. The political theory of consciencism abstracts from the colonial situation. Based on the metaphysical conception of matter as a plenum of forces, consciencist political theory asserts that the impression of final and acquiescent subjugation of the colonial people disguises a tension of forces. A change in the relation of these social forces obliterates this impression. Those social forces are dynamic. They seek and tend to establish this or that social condition. See paragraph 3, page 99. One set of such social forces may dominate the other set(s) of social forces; or the latter may dominate the former; or an unstable equilibrium is formed. See the first lines of page 100. To make their dynamic nature clear, consciencist political theory categorizes them as positive action and negative action. These are abstractions grounded in social reality. Positive action represents the set of social forces that seek social justice through the elimination of oligarchic exploitation and oppression. On the other hand, negative action correspondingly represents the set of social forces tending to prolong colonial subjugation and exploitation. Go back to page 99, paragraph 3.
Consciencist political theory defines the colonial situation as one dominated by negative action, as understood. Negative action still dominates where the colonial people achieve only a semblance of true independence, it asserts. In this latter instance, colonialism gives in to neo-colonialism which is a guise adopted by negative action. Neo-colonialism is, in fact, colonialism playing possum; that is, pretending to be dead or asleep. See paragraph 1 of page 100. In the first paragraph of page 101, the political theory explains that when the colonialist country sees the advance of positive action it adopts a policy to contain it and thereby check this advance and limit it. It is this policy of containment, applied when negative action is assured that it is impossible to pursue its preferred choice of rolling back the drive of positive action, which produces neo-colonialism since the colonial country (exercising positive action) accepts this containment as second best. By this policy of containment, the colonialist country seeks to divert positive action into channels which are harmless to it. It abandons violence but imparts a deceptive (universalist) turn of mind to negative forces in the colonial territory which latter forces masquerade in sheep’s clothing, join the clamour for independence and are accepted in good faith by the people. From the inside, these negative forces seek to thwart the people’s aspirations.
But the people are not deceived forever as they see through the negative forces and turn away from them. At that stage, the colonial power is left with no option but to acknowledge the independence of the people. This does not mean that the colonial power leaves the newly independent country alone to work out its own destiny. It rather foments discontent and disunity in the erstwhile colonial country and on the basis of the chaos that results it then constitutes itself as the conscience and will of the people if not their voice and arm. (Look at the West in Libya – 2011). This then reverses the situation to the status quo where political decisions lose their focus on the welfare of the people in favour of the well-being and security of the erstwhile colonial power and the clique of local negative forces. Wherever the true independence of a people is perverted to subordinate their interests to those of a foreign power, though the sovereignty of the people is acknowledged, a neo-colonial situation is created. It is a situation whereby the people are exploited with greater serenity and comfort. As a result, neo-colonialism is a greater danger than colonialism.
Consciencist political theory explains that under colonialism, which is crude and overt, the people are united with their leaders by a common purpose. Under neo-colonialism, the people are divided from their leaders who neglect them after the people had put them in power. Such leaders incautiously become instruments of oppression on behalf of the neo-colonialists. See page 102 from up to paragraph 3.
On the basis of this political theory, which describes the tendencies in colonial and neo- colonial situations, a set of prescriptions is made for social-political action to be taken in favour of positive action. Remember that positive action involves those forces that seek social justice at the expense of oligarchic exploitation and suppression. Positive action is therefore directed at the dismantling of the oligarchic structure of society whereby a small group of people, relative to the rest of the mass of the people, controls the country and its resources to benefit itself. Consciencist political theory, in its prescriptive aspect, maps out a series of organizational principles for dismantling the oligarchic state structure and reconstruction of society. Basic among these principles is that which asserts that the people are the backbone of positive action. See paragraph 2 of page 103 for this. All other principles are then derived from this basic organizational principle. Thus, at paragraph 2 of page 100, the principle of the mass party armed with its instruments of education to back positive action is stated. On the heels of this latter principle is the principle of a people’s parliamentary democracy with a one-party system. The political theory defends this principle on the grounds that the multiple-party parliamentary system is a ruse for the perpetuation and cover-up of the inherent struggle between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have-nots’. Under the multiple-system, the parties are controlled by sections of the same group of oligarchs sharing the same exploitative ethical principle, so to speak. With it, the people’s aspirations are checked and contained.
In addition to these organizational principles, consciencist political theory maps out a series of political principles to guide positive action against the oligarchy. Here, again, a basic political principle, from which all other political principles are derived, is stated. By this basic political principle, positive action derives its authenticity from the needs and nature of the liberated territory; that is to say that positive action must always have reference to the needs and nature of the people. To have the people as the backbone of positive action, the basic political principle is saying that action begins and ends with addressing the needs of the people. This is the political principle of self reference. It is fundamental to all Nkrumaist social-political practice. And this practice issues in political, economic, social and cultural forms. Kwame Nkrumah says at the early part of page 103 that unless the political principle of self-reference is religiously maintained we might as well welcome with open arms the very foe we have sought to destroy at the cost of terrible suffering.
Immediately attendant upon the principle of self-reference is the derivative principle which states that political decisions and the course of political action must never be entrusted to a foreign country, especially one with great economic interests in the African continent. Nkrumah says that it is easier for the proverbial camel to pass through the needle’s eye with its hump and all than for an erstwhile colonial power to give sound and honest advice of a political nature. To allow this, he adds, amounts to handing back our independence to the oppressor on a silver platter. We could call this the political principle of self-reliance. Violation of this principle by way of dangerous flirtations with neo-colonialism constitutes an insult to the people whose efforts routed colonialism in the first instance, Nkrumah concludes on the principle. See page 102 paragraph 4.
The political principle of catalysis states that knowledge-based political intervention in social evolution speeds up and must be applied to speed up social evolution for an economy of time, life and talent. According to the enunciation of this principle, social evolution, like natural evolution, without the aid of knowledge-based intervention is a wasteful process in terms of time, life and talent. When political action aims at speeding up social evolution it assumes the nature of a catalyst. In the urgency of the African situation, the decolonization process requires speeding up if Africa is to catch up with and excel the rest of the world. This in turn requires knowledge of the laws of social development. Scientific knowledge, required for man’s intervention in the natural process to benefit man, is a must for social evolution as well. Without this positive action on the basis of the political principle of catalysis a colonial territory is doomed to creep in its petty pace from day to day towards the attainment of a sham independence that turns to dust… The objective analysis of the situation which it seeks to change begins the process of positive action; it is the beginning of the application of the political principle of catalysis. See page 104 paragraphs 1-3.
Consciencist political theory also outlines a political principle of alliances. By this principle, positive action must align with and marshal all the forces of progress to confront the negative forces while bearing in mind the need to nip fragmentation of it in the bud. All progressive forces are defined in regard to specific purposes. In this respect, some forces of progress tend to aid the realization of a particular purpose like the destruction of colonialism but become reactionary in respect of some other purpose like the construction of a socialist state in replacement of the colonial state. The principle of alliances urges that since the marshalling of such forces creates points of weaknesses along which the unity of positive action might disintegrate this possible disintegration must be anticipated and a way found to contain the diverse tendencies within the movement. Since the said tendencies are anticipated from the inception of the movement it appears implied that the dominance of the forces committed to the long term aim of recreating a society in which man is considered as one and treated as an end and not merely as a means will be assured by any method of containment found for the purpose. Positive action must be relentless in its application of this principle beyond the struggle against colonialism into the period of national reconstruction when the contradictory tendencies ripen. See pages 104-105.
It is this need to handle the contradictory tendencies in resistance to neo-colonialism in the era of national reconstruction that begets the political principle of ideology. The ideology is the searchlight under which every fact affecting the people’s life can be assessed and judged to expose the detrimental aspirations and sleights of hand of neo-colonialism on a regular basis, constantly. This ideology is socialist in form and content. Its metaphysical basis is traced to Nkrumah’s critical appreciation of the Anaxagoras conception of the mutual participation of objects in each other as we saw in chapter two. Consciencism states clearly at page 105, paragraph 3 that ‘In order that this ideology should be comprehensive, in order that it should light up every aspect of the life of our people, in order that it should affect the total interest of our society, establishing a continuity with our past, it must be socialist in form and in content and be embraced by a mass party’.
These are the words of Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah.
[Since new forms of society emerge from but are not imposed on the old a process of evolution and revolution is always involved. It is the task of the revolutionary to discern the evolutionary moments of the newly emerging and progressive trend so as to promote its development and dominance over the old and dying trend. The decisive moment, the revolutionary moment, is when the final act is undertaken to formally assert and constitutionalize the predominance of the new and the demise of the old. Evolution is thus involved in the revolutionary process as its initial stage.]