Political Philosophers Essay

530 words - 2 pages

Edmund Burke had traditional conservative views. He said that because of the profound tendencytoward irrational behaviour on the part of humans, guidance and direction from traditionalauthorities is needed in order for society to enjoy peace and stability.He argued that traditional authorities should pass on long-standing moral teachings through thefamily, religious institutions, and governmental laws; and insisted that compliance with traditionalmorality is more important than individual liberty. In other words, people should not have thefreedom to violate moral precepts.Thomas Paine's own faith was centred in the belief of an eternally existing God and of a universegoverned by law, while his religion was summarised in his famous sentence: My country is theworld, and my religion is to do good. As his religion transcended the formal professions of any cultor sect, he refused to accept the creed of any church. "My mind is my church" he said, "andchurches are but human inventions, set up to enslave mankind and monopolise power and profit."Due to these beliefs he was called an infidel, even though he believed in God.French philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau believed that ancient conceptions of human nature wereincorrect and a barrier to human happiness. Human beings were born good. What makes them badis an artificial, corrupt and depraved society. If human beings at birth were given freedom fromsociety's corrupt influences, they would grow up to be good, noble, unselfish, cooperative, andpossess all other human virtues.Thomas Hobbes depicted human nature as violent and warlike in his 17th century work...

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