Hobbeism or Hobbesian Thought is the political philosophy of the 17th century British philosopher Thomas Hobbes, who assumes that people are sufficiently similar in their mental and physical attributes that no one is invulnerable nor can expect to be able to dominate the others. Hobbes assumes that people generally “shun death”, and that the desire to preserve their own lives is very strong in most people and because of that they created the institution of the State.
Hobbesism believes that the natural state of the world, before states were created was miserable and dangerous. It was a war of everyone against everyone and life in it was solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short. This is caused by the fact that all humans are naturally egoist. But Hobbesism believes that humans have also another innate characteristic which is the sense of self-preservation or the survival instinct. This sense of self-preservation is the reason why humans were able to escape the natural state of the world by creating the social contract and the institution of the state and laws.
Hobbesism believes that to escape the natural state, humans driven by their survival instinct created the Social Contract. The Social Contract meant that individuals gave up their individual freedom and gave power to the sovereign state that rules over them. This action can be explained by Game Theory, while an individual may give up their own freedoms, they do that under the assumption that other members of society will do that too. This means that everyone looses their freedom but also everyone is stopped from hurting other people. The Social Contract bound the society and created the institution of the State in the same act, this means that in Hobbesian Thought Society and State are synonymous. The State itself is like a mythical monster Leviathan that devoured individuals and incorporated them into itself.
According to Hobbesism the ultimate role of the state is to provide their citizens with security and preventing the egoist excesses of people that would abuse their freedom to hurt others. Hobbesism sees Absolute Monarchism as the perfect form of government where the state has enough power to protect their subjects. Importantly Hobbesism believes that a good ruler will never become a tyrant. Wise monarch should always give their subjects enough freedom for them to prosper but also cut them down if they try to abuse that freedom. What might be surprising to some, Hobbesism does allow for circumstances where rebellion and abolishment of power is justified. If the state fails to do its most important duty, that is - give security to their citizens and protect them from outside enemies and crime. When state is unable to fulfill its basic duty people are completely justified to rise in rebellion and take action against their ruler.
Hobbesism is a pessimistic ball, believing humans are inherently evil creatures, this leads him to become a sort of control freak that wants to put everything in precise order and is easily angered when people don't listen to his orders. Alternatively Hobbesism can be portrayed as a sea monster that triest to devour everyone in sight.
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- Dengism - My modern incarnation.
- Misanthropy - Humans are bastards, as they will always be divided fighting for what shouldn't be fought for.
- Absolute Monarchism - A powerful monarch will be able to provide security to their subjects.
- Authoritarian Capitalism - People should have enough freedom to prosper but not enough to threaten security.
- Noocracy - A wise leader shall guide the folk and protect them
- Anti-Anarchism - We shall escape from the natural state by establishing the government
- Juche - A brutal government is better than the state of nature, but I'm not so sure about the socialist rubbish and worship of dead leaders...
- Totalitarianism - I think you might taking it a little too far.
- Jacobinism - Rousseau challenged my ideas but your republic ended up as a Leviathan.
- INGSOC - Do you know what you're doing?
- Libertarianism - Too much freedom is dangerous!
- Anarchy - You would like us to come back to the terrible natural state?!
- Anti-Authoritarianism - You prefer the natural state?
- Classical Liberalism - Oh you're challenging me?!
- Egoism - Everything wrong with humanity is because of you and you're proud of it?
- Leviathan by Thomas Hobbes
- Thomas Hobbes
- Hobbes’s Moral and Political Philosophy
- Hobbes Was Right, TV Tropes