Lao Tzu And Machiavelli Analysis

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A good country is first and foremost a stable country, in that it is not struck by physical or economic ruin and warfare and anything that would otherwise be devastating towards the peace and welfare of its people. Ideally in a stable country, citizens should be able to live their individual lives without much fear or concern about the country’s welfare and without interference from its government and officials. Many countries fit this criteria, or claim to. Lao Tzu advises the Master to “practice not doing, and everything will fall into place”. Throughout Tao-te Ching, Lao Tzu promotes inaction and a very passive form of governing in accordance to the Tao. As one ceases control, everything will fall into its rightful place. In the perfect…show more content…
Machiavelli emphasises the importance of being armed, which is a stark contrast to Lao Tzu’s idea of an effective ruler abandoning all arms and violence. According to Machiavelli, familiarising oneself with military matters keeps not only the ruler and his power safe, but also his country. A ruler should constantly be alert and anticipate attack so that he may be well prepared for when an enemy should strike. Will this then guarantee the safety and stability of a country? As controversial as Machiavelli’s rhetoric may be, this is undoubtedly the more practical method, and it is clear that it is one that is still applied today. As evidence, even at a time where warfare is not as prevalent as it was before, almost every country in the world, even those at peace have their own military forces. Suppose a country does not, and relies purely on the trust that all humans from all corners of the world must be good, the lack of anticipation for foreign attack will render said country vulnerable and therefore unstable. Any simple form of oncoming attack on a completely unarmed state would prove devastating. Lao Tzu’s version of a behind-the-scenes leader who does not establish laws and governs with the trust that all people will be good will surely fail. Even if his country is fortunate enough not to…show more content…
To lead a country and citizens to greatness is no easy feat, especially when failure carries great risk and and sometimes irreversible consequences. Governing a country requires much thought and strategy and is something a leader should constantly work at to improve in order to succeed. I strongly believe that careful planning and execution, as well as being moderate but firm are the ways one should adapt as opposed to allowing things to take its own course with hardly any control at all as per Lao Tzu’s suggestion to be a great leader. Despite controversy and much discussion on Machiavelli’s ideas, I find that he provides a practical guide to statecraft, albeit somewhat forceful and may come off as cruel to some people. A strong, firm, but not overpowering authority will successfully defend his country from external forces and at the same time keep internal affairs in harmony. He thinks ahead and instead of concentrating on one aspect of his government works towards the greater good for all. If one is able to succeed in cultivating these above qualities they would contribute greatly to the better good of the world and to a better future for both their countries and
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