Human Nature as Competitive

Topics: Mind, Human, Thought Pages: 2 (458 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Thomas Hobbes believes that humans are born equal. He means the bodies and minds of newborn people are of equal ability. One person sometimes becomes stronger in body or quicker in mind than another. When one becomes stronger in body, the person can claim he is better than another is. This causes other people around him to become threatened and jealous by the stronger person. People are more equal when it come to wisdom of the mind, because almost all people think they have more wisdom than the common people do. "They will hardly believe there be many so wise as themselves (201)." Because people basically have equality of ability, they all have hope of attaining what they want and dream of. The conflict comes when two men want the same thing, which they both cannot have. They become enemies and they seek to destroy or subdue the other. Some examples of this are two families that want to purchase the same house. They try to subdue each other by raising the amount they are willing to pay for the house, even if it is more than they were planning on spending. Every person thinks their companion should value them and when the person undervalues them, they will do whatever it takes to be as valued as they would like to be. There are three principle causes of quarrel in the nature of man. They are competition, diffidence (or distrust), and glory. In human nature, competition is for gain, diffidence is for safety, and glory is for reputation. It is the competitive human nature that renders people apt to invade and destroy one another. The reading gives and example of a man who arms himself when taking a journey, locks his doors when he goes to sleep, and locks his chest even when he's home. He is trying to protect himself from others competing against him for what he has. The reading give another example of how governments and leaders have their weapons pointed at the enemy at all times and how leaders continually spy on their neighbors. This is true...
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