A day with a philosopher.

Yesterday, I came face to face with Lenin for 30 rubles (1 US$) only. One of my colleagues expected to find him in a Cathedral-type of mausoleum, just like the Taj Majal, considering his role in the Russian government. Instead, we found him in a basement with stingy lighting, probably for dramatic effect, and no traces of unnecessary decoration in the room. It was very plain and simple, but I expected that from a Russian government man. It was all basic design, very formal, serious and direct to the point.

Russians can be dead serious people kind of people. The Russian guards seemed to push the visitors to keep the flow going inside the building. So when an old lady caused the queue to get crowded, my friend was scared for her that the guards would beat her up. (Westerners have this crazy impressions of Russia.) He almost laughed when the guards carefully assisted the old lady down the steps.

Anyway, I just wanted to say that that was a very affordable access to a very significant figure in history, politics, economics and philosophy. We had to pay 8US$ for a cup of hot chocolate that was gone in four sips.

Vladimir Lenin was a huge Russian political figure who produced the idea of Leninism. Leninism theorizes that only political revolution led by professional revolutionaries (as agents of the proletariat) can overthrow capitalism. Then it would be possible to establish a dictatorship of the proletariat government within a democratic system.

The building where Lenin lies, unstirring.

His frozen remains reminded me a lot of former Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos. Both men I highly admire.

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