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Understanding Thomas Hobbes Paradox

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The Hobbes Paradox

The state of nature in accordance to human kind is man’s most primal needs. The brutish ways of sentient beings who need to satisfy their urge for food, violence, and sex are implemented out of necessity. The quandries of the human race start with why we have the urges we do, and end with how we can harness them. Thomas Hobbes was a political philosopher who believed all people at their core were selfish beings who enjoyed competition and winning. Strangely enough, Hobbes’ beliefs on people living for solely their own personal gain did not interfere with his belief that people can also cooperate in the right scenario. Hobbes’ philosophy entailed man needing a governing body to prevent them running wild and acting freely on pur instinct, and in turn he supported government and authority.

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The real awareness of self comes with morality, and Hobbes believed that there could be no enforced moral code without a government body. People would run rampant with no rules to abide by, and a society acting on primal needs can be incredibly dangerous and barbaric. To escape the calamity of an archaic civilization, people must evolve and work together to ensure proper laws are consistently respected and obeyed. Thomas Hobbes in essence believed that people are inherently bad, and with this notion he came up with the solution of people forming government to decisively figure out what can be accepted as ‘right’ and ‘wrong’. There is a moral compass created when a group can objectively state what is allowed and what isn’t. Hobbes believed that man had trouble deciding what choices to make as primal needs will always lead one down the most selfish route. The ideal utopia would consist of a governing body who eventually adapts to judging sitations so reasonably and objectively that there are never any hostile situations between anyone. When a society can trust its governing body in terms of safety and the infrastrcuture of well being, that is when a golden age is reached.

In being a political philosopher, Thomas Hobbes touches on moral issues and the original sin of man. The vices, wrongdoing, and so called ‘sins’ of man all root from primal need. Hobbes believed in a system that would help people escape their natural, unevolved insticts and that platform was government. To escape the state of nature that creates primal beasts out of man, people must cooperate and embrace each other’s knowledge to expand understanding. People can work together under the right circumstances, and throw away each other’s differences to appease logic and suppress chaos. It is not an impossibility for a person to become self sufficient without appeasing the barbarism of primal necessity, but having an authoritative body to look up to for guidance would surely expedite the process. Free choice is within the heart and soul of every man, but Hobbes believed we are all pre-disposed to a neanderthal way of thinking and living. Whether Hobbes was correct or not, government is still a necessity to keep society grounded. Authority is not a bad thing when respect is reciprocated.

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