Free Essay on Philosophers: Thomas Hobbes and Rene Descartes

Published: 2022-06-10
Free Essay on Philosophers: Thomas Hobbes and Rene Descartes
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Philosophers
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1114 words
10 min read

Thomas Hobbes and Rene Descartes greatly contributed to the development of political philosophy. They advocate for the development of the community by applying the science of man. According to their respective philosophies, the science of man depends on nature of man. Construction of society occurs depending on how man works. According to Rene Descartes, human beings occur in the form of two different substances; the mind and the physical stuff. Descartes focused on Cartesian dualism as a philosophy fundamental in the construction of community. Thomas Hobbes, an English philosopher, focused on materialism and was against dualism. Descartes also observes that he only exists as long as he thinks. He believes that one can also acquire knowledge through the senses and not necessarily the mind. However, the senses can deceive according to Descartes. Thomas Hobbes provides the primary principles of political philosophy and provides knowledge on sovereignty, justice and citizenship. He believes that political science that is systematic enables the construction of a stable, productive and peaceful society. According to Hobbes, politics should primarily satisfy moral and basic needs rather than organize society around different contentious principles. Thomas Hobbes and Rene Descartes, therefore, exhibit some similarities and differences in their political philosophies.

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Both Thomas Hobbes and Rene Descartes philosophies focus on the determination of the truth about human life. The philosophies seek to determine how humans exist in the community. Both Hobbes and Descartes are rationalists who failed to trust their respective senses. According to them, senses cover up the reality and deceive people about the truth. They both believe that truth only occurs because of rational arguments and reason. Hobbes incorporates politics and nature in his philosophy. He agrees with Descartes argument about deceiving God. Both Descartes and Hobbes treat into consciousness to solve the aspect of deception. According to Hobbes, God it is not easy to comprehend God. He also states incomprehensible elements of nature. Descartes, unlike Hobbes, focuses on the aspects of deceiving God to illustrate the significance of science. Hobbes illustrates science without including the aspects of deceiving God. Hobbes philosophy is sustainable and instructive of life of human beings.

Hobbes focused on materialism as a political philosophy and argued against the Cartesian dualism. According to Hobbes, politics should create a government that focuses on mutual consent. He also believes that politics should guarantee equality among the members of the society, which forms the basis of the modern politics. Hobbes illustrates the science of political good. According to Hobbes, the basic motions of human beings consist of speech and passion. He develops an assumption that all human beings are equal and deserve equal treatment in the society. Individuals possess natural right to own different materials in the society. Hobbes postulates in his philosophy that individuals can equally seek power, resources, and opportunities. According to Hobbes, the state of political nature is equal ion both the mental and physical capacity. Every person has a right to acquire good things that satisfy their respective interests. According to Hobbes philosophy on materialism, human beings seek to control and dominate others around them in an attempt to acquire materials. They also dominate others to prevent them from equally acquiring resources and opportunities. Others are very unhappy with other people's progress and only feel satisfied when they acquire a superiority over others in the society.

Unlike Descartes' Cartesian dualism, Hobbes argues that desire for glory, competition, and distrust are the primary factors that control the society. He argues that war exists between individuals in the society in the form of competition for materials. Life becomes poor, solitary, short, nasty and brutish because of the lack of collaboration among people in the society. The primary need of every man is to preserve goods and their lives. However, he also states that all humans fear violence and would easily advocate and actively participate in the eradication of conflict and violence in the community. The Hobbes psychology revolves around the human desire to protect them from death. The social construct is a key pillar in the Hobbesian psychology. Individuals seek peace with each other and advocates for equality and understanding in the community. According to Hobbes, the natural laws control the community and govern people's behaviors and interaction with others. According to the theory, human beings believe in justice.

Nevertheless, the Cartesian dualism, unlike Hobbes materialism, focuses on the material body and immaterial mind as very distinct substances. Descartes believes that body and mind are very distinct substances. The Descartes meditations on philosophy are crucial in illustrating the difference between the two distinct substances making the world; mind and physical body. They refer to different entities and exhibit different meanings. Descartes also believes that one only attains knowledge through the process of rational thought and critical reasoning. He believes that factors such as an individual's feeling, imagining and willing significantly affect how people interact in the society. Descartes states that mind is the tool for thinking while the body is the physical stuff that enables humans achieves their goals.

Hobbes argues against Descartes theory because both the body and mind greatly interact. According to Descartes, body and mind are different and does not depend on each other to properly function. For example, one would feel the pain when boiling water pours on the hand. It would lead to a voluntary emotion of moving the hand. Descartes argues that human body can operate without the soul since they are separate entities. Descartes considers bodies as a machine that operates using different segments. According to Hobbes materialism, human beings consist primarily of the physical body. According to Hobbes, energy and matter are more important to humanity than souls and spirit. It is the physical processes of the body that that triggers the decisions we make as human beings. Freewill is a fundamental element of the human community. Human freely chooses their behaviors in the society band could reject both environmental and biological influences at will.

Hobbes and Descartes played an integral in the development of philosophy. The philosophies focus on the difference between the mind and physical body. They also illustrate the significance of the existence of God and the development of laws that govern the society. According to the two philosophers, Descartes and Hobbes, the science of man plays a significant role in the development of the society. They depict the relationship between consciousness and matter, which is a fundamental aspect of the human relationship in the society. They influenced the global understanding of philosophy. The philosophies are vital and help in understanding the world. It helps in understanding the relationship between people in the society. It also helps in understanding how and why people behave differently in the community.

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