Thomas Hobbes

Thomas Hobbes
Birth 1588
Death 1678

English political philosopher and deist. He saw religion as the fruit of fear, ignorance and wild imagination, which the government needs in order to coerce people. He came up with the ‘social contract theory’. This states that the fact that everyone is fundamentally equal leads to a ‘war of all against all’ (‘bellum omnium contra omnes’). The only way to avoid this is by entering a social contract, i.e. voluntarily compromising your rights for the good of the state. According to Hobbes, morality is based on social obligations rather than religious dogma.

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