Hobbes Leviathan Research Paper

Decent Essays
Hobbes, Leviathan

In the first several chapters of Leviathan, Hobbes puts forth a theory about how human’s sense things and how that process leads to imagination, dreams and trains of thought. He believes that the things we understand in our thoughts come from objects outside of ourselves; pressing on the senses (102). He believes that our senses are literally moved, and this motion in turn moves the brain and produces our imaginations and understanding. He claims that even things like color are motion in an object which causes motion in us; and that motion is what gives the perception of color. Hobbes takes issue with the philosophy of his day, which is Aristotelian. His theory is put forth against the idea that objects send visible waves and sound waves and the like (102). He goes on to speak about how objects in motion stay in motion and objects at rest stay at rest. Objects are always moving and it is this motion that Hobbes thinks eventually comes in contact with our senses, and moves them in turn. Since the senses have been moved, they will continue to move until something stops them. This continued motion, even after the external object is no
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Philosophy is no longer inner speculation and reasoning, but mere physics; a huge working mechanism caused by motion. This, in turn, seems to lead to the implication that everything a person thinks they know is subjective; having been produced by some local object. His theory also runs into the area of theology. He claims that "No man can have in his mind an Image of infinite magnitude; nor conceive infinite swiftness, infinite time, or infinite force, or infinite power” (103). whenever we talk of something being infinite because we cannot perceive its end. Since there are things that we have not been moved by, we give those ideas the name God. Yet everything we perceive is merely based on some object that at one time or another has moved us and is still moving within
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