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"The state of nature has|
a law of nature to govern it,
which obliges every one:
and reason, which is that law,
teaches all mankind, who will but consult it,
that being all equal and independent,
no one ought to harm another in his life,
health, liberty, or possessions..."
John Locke grew up in Pensford, England|
and attended Westminster School.
was an Oxford student of medicine and philosophy.
Later Locke became member of the Royal Society.
Lord Ashley asked him to be his personal physician.
In London, Locke resumed his medical studies and met Thomas Sydenham whose influence can be seen in Locke's natural philosophical thinking Essay
"Concerning Human Understanding"
1632 - 1704
born in Wrington, Somerset
close to Bristol
His father was a country lawyer
and clerk for the
justice of peace
Birthplace John Locke
Many Americans understand the importance of Locke's thinking for American constitutionalism.
The "law of nature" interpreted by Locke was embraced in Colonial America and the separation of church and state embraced in the Constitution. The Founding Fathers looked to Locke as the source of many of their ideas.|
Locke advocated separation of the state from the church and extension of religious toleration. Locke's political writings were an enormous influence on America's founders in the preservation of liberty and the establishment of representative government. Locke's contributions to American Liberty can clearly be seen interwoven in the US colonial Declarations of Rights, paraphrased in the US Declaration of Independence, and incorporated into the US Constitution and Bill of Rights.
The Declaration is born of the extensively studied and widely taught Treatises On Civil Government by John Locke. There Locke reasoned the very purpose of forming civil government is the protection of property, and that "life, liberty, and property (pursuit of happiness)" are not three separate rights
but intrinsically one great and inalienable right he called "property"
which begins with the life of the individual,
then his liberty which is essential to his productivity,
followed by the right to enjoy the fruits of his labors without fear that the government will confiscate his property.
These inalienable rights are from God and legitimate government has no authority to take them away but is chartered in fact to preserve and protect liberty.
Locke's ideas have still a philosophical and active influence on securing toleration. Locke's governmental reasoning influenced the US Founding Fathers and the establishment of American liberty.
Applications of John Locke's governmental philosophy fit to America's situation today. One could think the United States today are following many of the absolutist political ideas of Rousseau rather than the truly liberating ones of John Locke, which are so important to a free people.|
Americans are not being taught anymore the treasures entrusted to them in their heritage and particularly in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.
John Locke's First Treatise of Government demolished the idea of absolute monarchy, called monarchy an arbitrary rule by men, not law.
The Second Treatise provided a blueprint for a system of government with a written constitution that would ensure the citizen's "life, liberty, and property."
Documents of rights directly influenced by Lockean governmental philosophy:
The Virginia Declaration of Rights was strongly influenced by the writings of John Locke, later became a blue print for the US Bill of Rights.
The US Declaration of Independence includes Locke's words almost verbatim and gives the philosophical foundation for the US Constitution
What is the Lockean Law of Nature? |
An obligation to preserve oneself and,
when one's own life "comes not in competition," one ought,
"as much as he can, to preserve the rest of mankind"
and not interfere in others' rights to life, liberty, or property.
"What is an idea?
Idea is the object of thinking." John Locke - essay concerning Human Understanding 1689.
Think about: A lot of the freedom Americans have faced in their country is based on the thoughts of many enlightened men
John Locke has lived over 3 centuries ago!
"Education begins the gentleman, but reading, good company and reflection must finish him."
"The improvement of understanding is for two ends:
first, our own increase of knowledge;
secondly, to enable us to deliver that knowledge to others."
Outdated education is the most pervasive threat to the Earth today.|
We have tried to give you a little glimpse of one of the early philosophers of England.
He kind of started the "Age of Enlightenment", a time when knowledge and understanding was highest priority.
"Responsibility is born when the love, the feeling of responsibility for others
grows stronger than the love for yourself."
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All of these philosophers came to the conclusion that there must be a universal law,
Laws of Nature which provide mankind with guidance, and guarantee their personal freedoms. Every law is referenced fundamentally to reason. One could say that for every law reason is essential, it needs to be detected and exposed. But reason can only be explained by an already existing law, a law that provides direction.|
This is what we call the "law of nature" - the “lex naturalis” or the unwritten law, dictating the rules of Nature in its whole. It is therefore nothing subsequent; it is also not an invention; it is a part of all life.
Peter Bonenberger, president of
Bear Springs Blossom Nature Conservation: Avatar of the laws of Nature
Think about if you want to follow us in shouting out loud: Sapere Aude!
Education is the best provisionfor old age!
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