Monday, July 4, 2011

Thomas Hobbes - Leviathan

Men are asocial by nature. They only move towards what they desire and away from what they fear. Their two greatest fears are death and the loss of possessions. The three main factors of discord among men are egoism, mistrust and the desire of glory.

Imagine there were no laws acting on us, no State to impose fear and force us to obey (aka State of Nature). Everyone would fight each other to death for their possessions. Under such conditions, we can't acquire wealth. We can't even assure our own safety!


But we aren't idiots. We give away our power to stomp on others in order to live in community, to guarantee our safety (Social Contract). The sum of all those powers, given away by all the people in a nation, is called State. The State must impose fear onto us so we all follow the rules. However, since this is a contract, the State must also respect the citizens.

12 comments:

  1. It's crazy how we managed to establish such a system in the first place

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  2. i love this analysis, moar of this!

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  3. Yeah this is all pretty true, life without laws would bring out the worst in people

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  4. Thats a pretty good reading

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  5. well, that's quite a simplified and scholastic view of Hobbes, but yes it's what he actually said.

    :D

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  6. Pretty good post man, these enlightenment thoughts are as important today as they have ever been. Followed!

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  7. Very interesting summarization :P It's scary but true!

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  8. Leviathan was very ahead of its age, for sure.

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  9. great post, society is awesome

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  10. Gives me something to think about.

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  11. Great intelligent posts, I follow :)

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