John locke law and liberty

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john locke law and liberty

Second Treatise of Government Quotes by John Locke

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Positive and Negative Liberty (Isaiah Berlin - Two Concepts of Liberty)

In , John Locke wrote that "the end of law is not to abolish or restrain, but to but he situated property as one of three key goals of government: life, liberty.

John Locke and Political Hebraism

John Locke — is among the most influential political philosophers of the modern period. In the Two Treatises of Government , he defended the claim that men are by nature free and equal against claims that God had made all people naturally subject to a monarch. He argued that people have rights, such as the right to life, liberty, and property, that have a foundation independent of the laws of any particular society. Locke used the claim that men are naturally free and equal as part of the justification for understanding legitimate political government as the result of a social contract where people in the state of nature conditionally transfer some of their rights to the government in order to better ensure the stable, comfortable enjoyment of their lives, liberty, and property. Since governments exist by the consent of the people in order to protect the rights of the people and promote the public good, governments that fail to do so can be resisted and replaced with new governments. Locke is thus also important for his defense of the right of revolution. Locke also defends the principle of majority rule and the separation of legislative and executive powers.

Of course, Hebrew Scripture forms but a part of Christian Scripture, so that Locke would not but have taken the Old Testament to be every bit as divinely revealed as the New Testament. However, it is still puzzling just why he should have drawn so much more heavily on Old Testament sources than he did on New Testament ones, especially in respect of illustrating quite universally applicable theses about the law of nature. Anyone who reads the Two Treatises of Government , alert to their religious and theological character, will find it quite striking how much is made of Old Testament sources and how little of any teaching or doctrine from the Christian Gospels and Epistles. But they are well in the background, and their specific teachings are not appealed to at all. By contrast the Old Testament is all over the Two Treatises.

Natural rights and legal rights are two types of rights. Natural rights are those that are not dependent on the laws or customs of any particular culture or government, and so are universal and inalienable they cannot be repealed by human laws, though one can forfeit their enforcement through one's actions, such as by violating someone else's rights. Legal rights are those bestowed onto a person by a given legal system they can be modified, repealed, and restrained by human laws. The concept of natural law is related to the concept of natural rights. Natural law first appeared in ancient Greek philosophy , [1] and was referred to by Roman philosopher Cicero.

First, John Locke argues that natural law is rational: created beings capable of laws, where there is no law, there is no freedom: for liberty is.
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John Locke. 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… and when his own preservation comes not in competition, ought he, as much as he can, to preserve the rest of mankind, and may not, unless it be to do justice on an offender, take away, or impair the life, or what tends to the preservation of the life, the liberty, health, limb, or goods of another. But though this be a state of liberty, yet it is not a state of licence: though man in that state have an uncontroulable liberty to dispose of his person or possessions, yet he has not liberty to destroy himself, or so much as any creature in his possession, but where some nobler use than its bare preservation calls for it. Every one, as he is bound to preserve himself, and not to quit his station wilfully, so by the like reason, when his own preservation comes not in competition, ought he, as much as he can, to preserve the rest of mankind, and may not, unless it be to do justice on an offender, take away, or impair the life, or what tends to the preservation of the life, the liberty, health, limb, or goods of another. And if any one in the state of nature may punish another for any evil he has [] done, every one may do so: for in that state of perfect equality, where naturally there is no superiority or jurisdiction of one over another, what any may do in prosecution of that law, every one must needs have a right to do.

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  4. Harry T. says:

    The natural law concept existed long before Locke as a that when Locke emphasized the right to life, liberty.

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