J. Sztumski (red.), "Społeczeństwo polskie w procesie demokratycznych przeobrażeń" (S. 52-76). Katowice : Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Śląskiego
The principal problem matter considered here is the influence of philosophy on the genesis, existence and decline of one of the specific variants of political power — totalitarian power. Basing on a brief analysis of the basic historical controversies shaping the relation between philosophy and politics (realism versus nominalism,
ideology versus Utopia, collectivism versus individualism, conservatism versus progressiveness) the author endeavours to demonstrate the scope, mechanism and direction of action of human thought on social reality. Historical models serve merely as illustrations in the attempt to diagnose the contemporary situation,
without which it is difficult to imagine the possibility of a definitive rooting out of the totalitarian threat — still very real despite certain optimistic symptoms appearing at the turn of the ninteen eighties and nineties.
The critical evaluation put forward here of the arguments formulated by various philosophical orientations, struggling in contemporary times to offer a new political shape for our world, leads to the conclusion that what is needed is an alternative philosophy, which with an unbiassed exposure of the dogmatic intentions
of the opposing sides will be able to construct a synthesis of the most valuable elements from the past conjoined with creative thinking about the future, a compromise between the positive aspects of belief in the unquestioned rightness of basic moral norm and the ideas of tolerance resulting from the principle of relativism,
linking the fieree criticism of Utopia with the constructive conservatism of ideology, and finally a radical understanding of freedom as the contradiction of both extreme individualism and collectivism. Ultimate success for such a way of thought, containing a real and permanent break with totalitarianism would require,
however, a raising of the overall intellectual and moral level of the society of the future — without this it is impossible to envisage effective elucidation and defusing of all the imaginary causes of controversies and conflicts.