The Authority of Man

633 Words3 Pages
Man has authority over every other species on earth. What is authority and what is it made up of? Lonergan answers this in his piece, “Dialectic of Authority.” His analysis of power includes its definition and its requirements. He explains how it comes about and the efforts people must go through to achieve it, both in a community and as individuals. He also ties it to the transcendental precepts. According to Lonergan, authority can be defined as “legitimate power.” The definitions and attributes of power and legitimacy must be discussed in order to truly grasp the concept of authority. This legitimate power can only be harvested when applied to the transcendental precepts. These are to be attentive, be intelligent, be responsible, and be reasonable. These will be discussed after a reflection upon power and legitimacy. Humans must cooperate together in order to achieve power. This cooperation can happen in two instances. The first is the cooperation of humans from generation to generation. If humans did not do this, we would be in the same state that we were when we first existed as primitive beings. North Koreans today serve as a good example. Little to no media leaves or enters North Korea making the people inside very weak. They do not have any cooperation with the rest of the world and therefore yield very little to no power. All power that exists today is the result of the buildup, growth, and incorporation of power from previous generations. The second instance is cooperation at any time and any place. Today cooperation yields great results. They say two brains are better than one. An individual cannot achieve as much as a group can achieve and the same applies to one group and multiple groups. The more people that work... ... middle of paper ... ... due to privilege. This might make people who are living under illegitimate and unauthentic power rise up and contest the ruling party. The people can have another nature too. If the people have illegitimate intentions, they will support illegitimate rule and vice versa. Authority is a complex and important attribute of the philosophy of knowledge. It allows for systems to be formed and gives rise and has given rise to many great civilizations. Its source is in the legitimate power of community and cooperation between individuals and groups. Authenticity decides whether power is legitimate and can have a great impact on the way authorities function in terms of happy or unhappy citizens. Finally, authority is attributed with the transcendental precepts in the sense that the authority must carry out actions that are attentive, intelligent, reasonable, and responsible.

More about The Authority of Man

Open Document