Essay On Hobbes State Of Nature

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In the state of nature Hobbes describes a condition in which mankind is completely free. He claims everyone would have the right to anything. There are no duties binding people and no one would have any obligations. In this environment everyone is a judge of good and evil, there would be neither set rules nor guidelines. With these rights in place Hobbes deems it could only result in such bloody chaos. His descriptions of the state of war are very colourful. Hobbes believes human beings are driven by their passions, which are continuous, and people will seek to satisfy these passions. He sees humans seeking ‘power after power’ and this has no end, only in death, “so that in the first place, I put for a general inclination of all mankind, a perpetual and restless desire for power after power, that ceaseth only in death”. In the state of nature Hobbes depicts mankind to be selfish, riotous and have relentless ambitions. It’s…show more content…
According to Hobbes the most fundamental natural law is to seek peace, “every man should endeavour peace, as farre as he has hope of obtaining it”. Peace in the state of nature cannot be obtained and it is out of this fear that we may begin to look favourably on adapting some form of society. Hobbes describes nineteen laws of nature that would naturally form the framework of a society. The idea of the social contract is developed, “the mutual transferring of rights”. This refers to man relinquishing some of his former rights in order to achieve peace and the golden rule, put into the negative, “do not do onto others what you would not have them do onto you”. Why is peace the highest good for Hobbes? Why not justice or honour? For Hobbes peace is a means of life. Sometimes Hobbes may be seen to write as a scientist but other times as a moralist for whom the laws of nature states that we are forbidden to do anything destructive of life (Smith S.,
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