Individual Freedom In John Stuart Mill's On Liberty

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John Stuart Mill says we all have a right to individual freedom, which gives us the freedom to express our thoughts and opinions without getting punished for it, as long as our opinions don’t interfere with someone else’s individual freedom. A good example of this concept comes from Zechariah Chafee, Jr. who says “Your right to swing your arms ends just where the other man’s nose begins.” One of John Stuart Mill’s principles was that of individual freedom, which he speaks of in On Liberty. As we use our own thought to base our feelings of concepts and ideas, we are utilising our individual freedom. The freedom no one can take from us is the liberty to think as we would like. Expressing those thoughts, however, is a different story, for not everyone in this world is as free to express as they are to think without certain consequences. Our thoughts are the beginning of everything: from a simple thought grows an idea. It’s like having a seed to a plant and knowing what will grow of it, but not how it will affect those around it. In his …show more content…

By pushing one another to do better and to live a more virtuous life, we are heading towards the greater good. One must have individual freedom in order to rationalize what the greatest amount of good is for the greater number of people. John Stuart Mill states that “If human beings are to live, rather than die—to flourish, rather than stagnate—they need to use their own minds to support their own lives.” In this, he is saying that if we are not flourishing by expressing your own thoughts, then we are stagnate and not growing. If we are stagnate and not willing to think about problems, and ideas, then we are not contributing to society. Not contributing to society can stagnate it, since no one else can think exactly like we ourselves may be able

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