Immanuel Kant And Thomas Hobbes Essay

Immanuel Kant And Thomas Hobbes Essay

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Throughout the ages there have been many impactful theorists that have brought forward ideologies on way to live, to communicate, and to think. Immanuel Kant and Thomas Hobbes are two philosophers who have produced profound thought provoking theories on how mankind should comprehend and conceive ideas. Kant talks about an enlightened age, where people must disregard guidance from others and learn to become independent thinkers. Contrarily, Hobbes discusses a world where a higher authority makes the decisions and thinks for the people. Together, these two philosophers are both enlightened thinkers, however, their beliefs on the minds of the public and how decisions ought to be made differ greatly.
In Kant’s, An Answer to the Question “What is Enlightenment”, he brings forth an ideology that everyone must think for themselves and that people must learn to let go of the ever present reliance on the church. Kant refers to this ideology as enlightenment, which he defines as, “… a man’s emergence from his self-incurred immaturity. Immaturity is the inability to use one’s own understanding without the guidance of another” Kant([1784]2008). This immaturity, as Kant concludes later in his writing, is what holds mankind back from truly becoming free people with free minds. Kant wishes for people to see that being mature is the only way to live as remaining immature is abnormal. Ignorance to becoming mature will never make a man a critical thinker and he will remain under the influence of the church. Kant believes that people lack the courage to think for themselves and that laziness and cowardice are a result of immaturity (1784[2008]). Becoming enlightened and becoming a critical thinker is challenging and requires a considerable a...


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...ions on their own is not something I would agree with. I would like to believe, much like Kant, that people have a right to their own thoughts, that people should take advantage of their abilities and enlighten themselves rather than constantly having a dependence on one or more people. Enforcing laws that the public has no say in, and having an elected sovereign who disregards any input whatsoever from the people is no way to live in my opinion. It takes away the life of a community, takes away the freedom and rights of all the people. There should be a genuine, normal process in which people can grow out of their immature roles and take on the decisions of an enlightened figure without the guidance of another. I believe that Kant justifies his statements more effectively in this comparison, and his theory is more compatible than that of Hobbes in a modern society.

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