He therefore could build upon the cogito to eventually build the world that is of true existence. The idea that Descartes exists as a thinking being ensures that he will be unable to doubt his thoughts and consequently believe that his philosophy is correct. Be that as it may, the cogito certainly has its weaknesses. An objection that would be considered one of the weakest points in the cogito is that it is limited to the ‘I’. The only thing that Descartes view on this reveals is that of his own mind.
Then who is the right one? Well, if we were obliged to choose one of them, my suggestion would be for Aristotle, even though Hobbes makes definite, original and precise statements and observations on the manner and attitude of human’s nature. Why I do not prefer Hobbes is that he fails to notice and discern the natural and particular goodness of nature of man. Let’s examine Aristotle’s standpoints, then Hobbes’, and make a finish with comparative
In Leviathan, Hobbes was the original author to suggest that humans are prepared to do terrible things, when there are no consequences. Hobbes paints the picture of a world in a “State of Nature,” which is referring to before governments controlled people, and before people had set customs and tradition. In saying this, he is implying that people are naturally evil, and that without a strong, central government to enforce rules, people are prepared to do horrendous things for their own personal gain. Thomas Hobbes doesn’t mean that people are evil directly, though. He means that several factors of human nature combine and mix to create something that is ignorant, arrogant and greedy.
Thomas Hobbes a 17th century philosopher who is best known for his political philosophy. The idea that nature is competitive, where morality only appears when we enter into society and it is backed up by the power of the sovereign. Hobbes define human nature as sensational because sensation is the source of all of our thoughts. We seek out pleasant experience and we avoid unpleasant experiences. For example death is an unpleasant experience where people are fearful losing their lives.
Hobbes argues that men are created generally equal, and it is from this equality that flows distrust, as from equality in being “ariseth equality of hope in the attaining of ends. And therefore if any two men desire the same thing, which nevertheless they cannot both enjoy, they become enemies.” From distrust “there is no way for any man to secure himself, so reasonable, as anticipation” and thus flows the essential belief in a brutal state of nature, that is a state of war of all against all. Hobbes believes this state of war occurs not only during times of battle, but when “men live without a common power to keep them all in awe.” Hobbes believes that in this state of war, among other things, “there is no place for industry; because the fruit thereof is uncertain; and consequently no culture of the earth; no navigation, nor use of the commodities that may be imported by sea; no commodious building...” Hobbes then advances the framework by making the logical leap that in such a state, of war footing and actual war, “nothing can be unjust.” As “where there is no common power, there is no law: where no law, no injustice.” Finally, a state of nature results in a “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short” human existence, and it is from this ultimately greatest evil, that a Leviathan is thought to be justified within Hobbesian political theory, and men, equal and free
Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Thomas Hobbes, two titans of the Enlightenment, work within similar intellectual frameworks in their seminal writings. Hobbes, in Leviathan, postulates a “state of nature” before society developed, using it as a tool to analyze the emergence of governing institutions. Rousseau borrows this conceit in Discourse on Inequality, tracing the development of man from a primitive state to modern society. Hobbes contends that man is equal in conflict during the state of nature and then remains equal under government due to the ruler’s monopoly on authority. Rousseau, meanwhile, believes that man is equal in harmony in the state of nature and then unequal in developed society.
Boethius examines different factors that prompt people to desire fame throughout The Consolation of Philosophy. The passage selected focuses on fame, which is aimed towards providing a realistic view of the disadvantages of celebrity. Although the common fear of human insignificance can drive people to chase after fame and focus on the finite, greater happiness will be found in this life and the next when they transcend what is worldly and look to everlasting life. Preceding the passage, Boethius establishes the mortality of human nature by using the example that any man can die of a bite from a tiny fly (dCP2m7). This dialogue establishes that all people die, no matter their stature or wealth, bridging the way for one to conclude that the
Hence, if every private individual was to be his own judge of what is good and evil, debates and disputes would arise concerning what the sovereign has decreed regarding actions in the prior regards. The commonwealth would thus be distracted and weakened by everyone’s own personal judgement of whether the sovereign is right or wrong, and whether to obey the laws or not. Thirdly, Hobbes contends that if the individuals in the commonwealth hold the mistaken belief that one’s individual conscience (morality) should always take precedence over civil duty, thus by being their own moral judge of what is good and evil in their sense, could prove the sovereign to ruin. He claims that our conscience and judgment is the same thing, thus if our judgments were impaired so too can our conscience be incorrect in what we establish for ourselves. Hence, the law is the public conscience by which the commonwealth must adhere
Thomas Hobbes is very much aware of the importance attached to the Summum Bonum in the works of the ancient philosophers, however, he insists that the “end we are to consider, that the Felicity of this life, consisteth not in the repose of a mind satisfied. For there is no such Finis ultimus, nor Summum Bonum, as is spoken of in the Books of the old Morall Philosophers. Nor can a man live, whose desires are at an end...Felicity is a continual progresses of the desire.” So for Hobbes, there is no greatest good worth striving for, nor is there hope of attaining joy. Rather, the “desire of all mankind, [is] a perpetuall and restlesse desire of Power after power, that ceaseth onely in Death.” Taking this into consideration, it may be said that in Hobbes’s philosophy there is no room for an ultimate end in life, rather, life is a constant state of acquiring more in which there is no hope for a felicity in life or repose of the
In this paper, I present my own interpretation of how Descartes, in his Meditations (1), tries to answer the question whether it is possible to build firm foundations for indubitable knowledge. The kind of knowledge he seeks is one we can achieve without doubt. In Descartes’ epistemology, we can claim to know something certainly only if there is no possible doubt for our proposition. The proof of the existence of God as an ultimately perfect and benevolent being is central to achieving this certainty. I will first present his foundationalist view and his general methodology.