Summary Of Natural State Of War By Thomas Hobbs

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Why is there a potential state of war among men

The concept that all men are continuously in a state of war amongst each other, forwarded by British philosopher Thomas Hobbs, is based on his opinions regarding mankind being reduced to their natural state. In reaching this pessimistic judgement regarding human nature, Hobbs is able to rationalise his assertions by evaluating how Humans would hypothetically operate within a society that is not governed by a sovereign uniting power.

In order to comprehend how Hobbs obtained this conclusion it is essential to understand the authors view on the physical and psychological aspects of the individual. By reviewing the natural state of the individual Hobbs is able to asserts that mankind …show more content…

He argues that each individual has a subjective moral code that is derived from their own personal desires. Rather then individuals adhering to a similar notion of justice based on consensus and rationality, they will construe their moral values to align with their passion. As individual morality is relative to their own desires this is bound to create a sense of anarchy and conflict within a society that lacks a state as man’s passions are able to run wild. Hobbs in combining this individualistic morality along with the general conclusion regarding the rule of nature, highlights that their will inevitably be conflict the demand for resources by humans will continuously outweigh the necessary supply. . As humans are guided by their own virtues which is based on passion rather then rationality, there idea of what defines self preservation are misconstrued. Therefore their is a substantial incompatible imbalance between these two notions as an individual is able to justify any decision (killing another person) on the basis of achieving his own desires. This mindset of Hobbes is further compounded when reviewing the context of the author, who developed his concepts during a time of great civil …show more content…

As there is no underlying universal moral code that may dictate men in there natural state on how to compete for scarce resources this would result in significantly upheaval. Therefore Hobbs believes that the combination of mankind seeking the right of self preservation which is guided by their own unique moral compass and their equality in the ability to kill each other will inevitably lead to an indefinite state of war. It is this fundamental view of human nature that provides a platform and justification for Hobbs endorsement of an all powerful sovereign state and his famous social contract

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