Comparison of Hobbes and Al-Farabi

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Reading Response 4 Sarah Zou
Sep. 23.2012
LBST 1B11 Comparison of Hobbes and Al-Farabi
Human nature was one of the most controversial topics now and then. In two of the world’s greatest philosophers’ essay, they discussed their own perception of human nature. Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679), England’s political philosopher, who discussed his view on the degeneration of human nature in his book, Leviathan, which depicted the natural state of humanity as nasty and brutish. His point of view came across many similarities as Al- Farabi (870- 950 CE) an Arab Scientist and philosopher during the Golden Age of Islam. With a group of philosopher, Al- Farabi created synthesis on Aristotelian thought and Muslin theology. His subject of interests varies from music to sociological and political issues. In his, On the Perfect State, he compared political state as a body, which the most important part of heart was the ruler. From both Hobbes and Al-Farabis’ perspective they both argued, in order to maintain a civil society, a form of ruling system was more than necessary. Hobbes suggested that the nature of men were equal, because everyone has different strengths that others may not posses. Al-Farabi supported this point by saying that human is not naturally perfect, they needed to be provided, and contribute to the needs of society with their strength in order to achieve perfection. And because of this equality, Hobbes stated, men needed to compete against each other or became enemies to achieve their goals. Therefore no one can be trusted because their interests might conflict and become enemies. So it was unclear that how powerful one must become to be always secured. However this theory contradicts...
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