Summary of ‘Self Love’ by Thomas Hobbes
Thomas Hobbes opens with the idea that all animals live within two sets of perpetual motion. The first being the inborn nature of animals to breath, the pulse and course of blood, the acquiring of nutrition and the exertion that follows, his vital motions. The second animal motions are voluntary, to speak, move and go. These voluntary motions are fueled by ones thought and imagination and are not always apparent to us. Essentially, Hobbes is saying that our thoughts propel us into motion or “endeavor.” When endeavor draws us toward something it is the cause of “appetite” or “desire”, what it is pushing us from something it is “aversion.” Appetites and aversions are both inborn and learned, but are certainly not constant or permanent . It is the nature of man to change, and with said change comes new aversions and desires. Hobbes’s egoistic approach is that each man is essentially selfish in the belief that what is desirable to him is good and what is less than that is evil, the definitions of which are not absolute and only relate to who uses them. Hobbes then goes on to say that all men are equal in many ways. They are equal in their inclination for power and the need to satisfy his constant desires for more. Hobbes said that “Nature made man equal in the faculties of the body.” (pg. 46) While one man may be more physically able, another may be more intelligent, and that the physical differences between them do not neccisarily make one more vulnerable than the other as the weaker one may be able to outwit the stronger of the two while the stronger of the two can very well overpower the smarter one. In this way, all men are equal. Hobbes also states that all men are equal in their vanity and in the idea that they themselves are above any other. “ For such is the nature of men, that howsoever they may acknowledge many others to be witty or more eloquent of more learned; yet they will hardly believe there be many so...
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