Social, Economic and Political Thought Part I Notes (Plato, Aristotle, St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, Machiavelli)

November 2, 2017 | Author: simplyhue | Category: Thomas Aquinas, The Prince, Reason, Plato, Socrates
Share Embed Donate

Short Description

Notes from my Soc Sci II class on Plato, Aristotle, St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, Machiavelli, The Republic, Socrat...


Soc Sci II – Social, Economic and Political Thought Part I Exam (Plato, Aristotle, St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, Machiavelli) *the Ionians (group of Greeks) were the ones who rejected popular mythology as an explanation of things around them - also called “natural philosophers” - revolutionary ~we need to investigate to find out where we came from - they were the first ones to answer “rationally”

1. *opens with Cephalus (he was dying, reminiscing life, for afterlife) talking to Socrates; asked if his soul will fare well – Socrates answered if he tells the truth and pays his debt, then he lived a just life; Socrates used the myth of the dagger and the deranged Virtue – it should always be the same and present under any circumstances, otherwise it is a preference

Thales – answered that everything comes from water Anaximander – thought of “dimension;” when something disappears, it just goes back to “the boundless” Anaximenes – basic substance is the air

2. Polemarchus (son of Cephalus) -justice is helping your friends & harming your enemies -question is how do you know who your friends are; is it even right to harm another person?

Pythagoreans Philosophers a. Pharmenides – believe that change is the only thing constant; everything is an illusion; arguing that there is reality beyond what your senses pick up; difference between TRUTH and APPEARANCE came into picture; also differences between REASON and SENSES; there‟s no actual and permanent change

3. Thrasymachus (Sophist) -breaks into the discussion -“just” or “right” means nothing but “what is to the interest of the stronger party” -question is: How do you know what your interest is all the time? –Even if you‟re the stronger party, it does not necessary mean that you are right. -point of Socrates: When you‟re in power, don‟t use it for your interest profession vs. trade -ex. doctor „coz you either want to get rich or to undertand/help -“by-product” of profession *since Thrasymachus is losing the argument, he changed the topic majority of the people seek: more wealth, more power, more pleasure -Socrates says that you should let your desires control you; you‟re truly a happy man if you‟re not a slave of your desires

b.Heraclitus – he agrees with Pharmenides that the only permanent thing is change but believed that what the senses pick up is true c. Empedocles – original captain planet; everything around us is composed of 4 elements: air, fire, water, earth; also added that these elements come together because of love and separate because of strife; also reasoned out the senses ~ the fire in the tree recognizes the fire in your eyes d. Democritus – everything is made-up of atoms SOPHISTS * group of foreign philosophers, prominent, they were the ones who taught young men and served as ambassadors) *the meaning is “wise mean;” skilled craftsmen *they were skeptics about truth because everything is relative for them *forte is rhetoric or the art of public speaking *Socrates never like Sophists *didn‟t care whether they‟re right or wrong because at the end of the day, to convince people was their goal *thought grammar, arithmetic astronomy *believed that man is the measure of everything *did not believe in universal truth

SOCRATES (born 470 BC) *represented a new way of thinking *first philosopher to shift focus from the nature to the individual *had the greatest influence to the European thought *never wrote a single “dialogue” *can be likened to Jesus (“parang si Jesus lang”-Ma‟am) *he‟s ugly, with bulging eyes and big nose *used the art of discourses – he asked questions in order to come up with a generalization *inductive reasoning *accdg. to Aristotle, he‟s like a midwife since he lets you come up with the conclusion with the answers you give *he appeared to be ignorant becaused he asked questions *”mob mentality” was prevalent even before *the only one who told the Athenians to not to go to war (Peloponnesian War) *was blamed for the Athens‟ loss^ & they believed he‟s introducing new god *but Socrates said that ~you shoud thank me because I was right, so the judge got mad and he was condemned through poison intake * “A real philosopher knows that he knows very little” *for him, continuous insight, questioning is good since you have reason, so use that *emphasized that we cannot know anything if we do not acknowledge that we know nothing *discussed how you should nurture yourself as a human being *when you‟re stuck at knowing what‟s right or wrong, you don‟t consult your environment &/or your peers, but you look into your reasoning *don‟t consult the norms of society, consult your reason GREECE *composed of city-states *Social classes: slaves, Metics (traders), citizens (members of the city entitled to political life except women) *Difference bet. city-states then & now: politics was really part of people‟s lives, they only talked about the affairs of the state

PLATO (427 – 347 B.C.) – THE REPUBLIC -morality, education, eugenics, best type of political system 1. See it as a treaty on justice 2. Seen as a guide to appease the soul 2. Gives what is the ideal/how the society should be

4. Adeimatus and Glaucon -Adeimatus: society-children are taught to be honest and just; dishonesty pays a lot than being honest; sevice -Glaucon: justice started as a convention; ok or desirable to do wrong things as long as no one sees it; Myths of Gyges – laws, midway bet. the best & the worst things; justice is necessary, not desirable; justice is compromise of the weak accdg. to Socrates, State: individual & refreet(?) justice in state Plato: Principles of Justice 1. Division of Labor -fulfilling the potential of the individual -helping the community -“luxurious state” (having extras) State: promote the good life – farmers; auxiliaries, philosopher kings (guardians) -Republic –imaginary state Justice – virtue 1st Principle – division of labor (social classes based on merit – what you are capable of, what you can do) -if you‟re basic needs are fulfilled, you will have other needssecurity (auxiliaries) and leaders (philosopher kings) [aux. & phi.k = guardians] -there is aristocracy since for Plato leaders are born not made Myth of the Metal – gold, silver, bronze/iron soul -it tells us that we all came from mother earth -we may come from the same origin but we have differences (skills) -technically, there is equality in determining if where you will “be.” So how will you know? through education Guardians – not allowed to own anything, communal (but not communism), should not enjoy any luxuries *goal of the city-state is to achieve the greatest possible happiness for the community as a whole *justice (in the state) as a virtue requires: wisdom, courage and temperance 1. Wisdom: (for the philosopher kings only) doing what is right from wrong, use of knowledge 2. Courage: knowing what to fear & not to fear (auxiliaries) 3. Temperance: moderation, restraint, everyone should have it Soul is consists of: (justice in the individual) 1. Reason 2. Appetite (the strongest) 3. Spirit – the one that pushes you to do the right thing *reason and spirit must come together to control the appetite *Plato believes that this is attainable through school -- the dialogue focused on the importance of education 3 waves of opposition (reforms needed to rehabilitate the city-state) 1. equality bet. men & women – women should be educated too 2. abolish property & family of the guardians 3. philosophers must be kings – power and wisdom must be tied together

Education of the Guardians 1. Starts with elementary education -up to 18 yrs. old -focus on: gymnastics (body) & music (soul; disciplines passion, brings impulses under control) -includes reading poetries except Homer‟s & other mythical gods -> presence of violence = censorship 2. Followed by compulsory 2 yrs. education -gymnastics & military service -there will be 1st selection: the “chosen few” will pursue higher education (2nd selection: study mathematics; for 10 yrs.) -at age 30, it will be determined whether you‟re a philosopher king or auxiliary 3. Additioanal 5 yrs. to the chosen ones (3rd selection) -study philosophy & morality -if not selected (to be philo. king) = adviser 4 Levels of Cognition: 1. Imagination – archaedia (?) - everybody has this for Plato - believe in the shadows (that it‟s real) 2. Belief – tistis (?) -able to distinguish/differentiate the shadow & the object -you are able to have a correct opinion -this is still in the world of appearances since you “see” it (sense of sight is used) *in order to go to the 3rd & 4th stage, you need a bridge and that is education (you‟ll be able to go beyond the senses  intelligible world: 3rd & 4th) 3. Level of Thought – dianola (?) -if you think in mathematical terms (through diagrams & models) -even if they‟re representations, you don‟t really see it but you understand -abstract reality: there‟s a world of forms beyond what we see -what makes thing a thing is not because of appearances but functions (ex. chair) 4. Intelligence -you now have dialectal inquiry -you question/subject them to inquiry; you verify -you produce new knowledge through verifying the assumptions/hypotheses -it‟s not that you don‟t have a trust (your friends will never test your loyalty/trust) Allegory of the Cave -people were chained inside a cave watching shadows -one person found himself able to move, he explored the cave, went outside uphill, dazzled by the sun; he went back to the cave since he sympathized with the remaining people & tried to free them, they didn‟t believe him *it depicts the life of Socrates (philosopher king) -being a king is given by nature (reason why that person was suddenly able to move) -the climbing uphill was the 35 yrs. of education -outside was the way of the philosopher king -the reaction of the people to that person was the same reaction of Athens to Socrates

ARISTOTLE (348 – 322 B.C.) – POLITICS *I was absent for two meetings (or one?). Dang =( Points: *Human beings are social beings: we always relate to others, someone alone is not normal in a broad sense *Human beings are also political beings: if you combine two entities, there‟s always the relationship of the dominant & the less dominant (associations  authority) *Since human beings are the only ones with reason, we would know what is good & bad, therefore we‟re the only ones with sense of justice (there‟s a concept of moral being)  so you are obligated to participate in the polis – to do what is good *If you are to choose a leader, don‟t based it on looks but based it on goodness *natural life is life of justice, so you have to be part of the polis for you to be called a human being Why justice? – you are responsible to fulfill your purpose *flourish as a human being – ideal; self-development

-if you follow the law good man – exercises his virtue, has absolute goodness; not necessarily a good citizen *being a good man & a good citizen is impossible *it is only within the state that you will develop ethical values (being a good citizen is translated; in every associations there will always be the one/s who will rule) *what differentiates the state is the form of ruling -household rule is natural for Aristotle (man & woman) -the difference of political rule is it‟s not natural since there is consent involve (therefore there is rational persuasion) *humans can only develop rationally if he involves in political activities Friendship – “philia” (mutual) -you need something from them (lowest king) -you see something in common (pleasure) -you see something in them you don‟t have (you want to emulate) *polis is held together by mutual economic advantages & “friendship” *whatever the virtues the polis have, that‟s the same virtues that will develop among its citizens Classification of Political Constitution Who should rule? (the answer is “distributive justice”) 2 arguments: 1. ruling part – for who are you ruling? *ideal: ruling for “others” (interest of his subject = common good) *x: ruling for themselves (own interest) 2. Aside for whom, identify how many are the members Types of Constitutions # of rulers 1 monarchy Others (good)


few aristocracy



many Polity (best/ideal) *statesmanship is practiced here; also the virtues Democracy (perverted)

-Citizen -somebody born on that place, with parents that have connections -defined by holding public offices *problem: when can you say that a decision is an act of state & not just an act of one person/leader *constitution depends on the nature of governing class/elite (able/to impose/enforce its values on society) *Aristotle focused on oligarchy and democracy *for him, revolution is if the existing constitution is replaced (way of life) *basis of leadership is not on the members alone Bases who will be the leader: 1. wealth 2. nobility of birth 3. goodness of character *the state must encourage to an end – goodness *the polis must pursue goodness & just *Aristotle is a realist – he analyzed first what was happening, the good & the bad, then gave solutions *Plato is an idealist Friendship in the Constitutions 1. Kingship/Monarchy – father & son 2. Aristocracy – husband & wife 3. Tyranny – master & slave 4. Democracy – distorted friendship *no such thing as absolute equality - elementary associations

*obligations of the state: to make sure there is enough resources, provide basic needs & security *polis makes it possible for human beings to live a good life *the moral laws of the different states are the concept of “political justice” *Aristotle used the state since for him you will see justice in the state unlike Plato that only discussed the state because of his concept of justice *whatever your nature is, you have to flourish that ex. slave – he should flourish himself as the perfect slave What is a good citizen? -varies on what society you‟re living in -for Aristotle, a good citizen is not necessarily a good man -be a productive member of the society

Polity – the best constitution - a truly happy life is a life of goodness - here you will get the mean (middle) of goodness - you should get the rulers from the middle class - the mean is always the best because it is attainable for everyone

ST. AUGUSTINE (354 – 430) – THE CITY OF GOD *background: 2 opposing power: senate & army * polis – in a decline during Aristotle‟s time *Roman Empire – in a decline during St. Augustine‟s -why the fall? 410 A.D., the rise of Christianity was the star of the fall *413 – 426 A.D. duration of writing the book

1st Ten Books: City of God -about defense of Christianity against the allegations -apology of Christianity for Christianity

*the state has positive functions; that you do not need to die; humans can still realize their nature, even while engaging in politics *St. Thomas Christianized Aristotle, help the Church to be more grounded

3 Points: 1. Christianity like the pagan religions is teaching the same things – same virtues. -not just about Christianity, also about the other religions -Christianity does not hinder community/state service 2. It is not the rise of Christianity that cause the fall of the Roman Empire but the decadence of pagan religions -the pagans were no longer giving what is due to their gods -pagan gods are jealous gods 3. Rome was no longer a city when it fell -Rome was no longer just -Background of Christianity -rise = interest to Jesus ( a Jew) -different from the Greek & Roman gods & goddesses -at that time, they believed that the world is about to end, so they preach the good news that through Christianity they will be saved -since those who attend the honoring of the emperor are declining, they blamed it to Christianity -Christianity did not acknowledge the divinity of the empire -all the bad things happening to the empire, Christianity was blamed (during Nero‟s time) -200-300 A.D. Roman Empire – there was government reconstruction; Rome was divided into Latin & Greek (Western & Eastern Part) -Constantine constructed a new capital – Constantinople (now Istanbul); somehow Christianity was “protected;” Constantine was baptized when he was about to die (considered the 1st Christian Emperor) -last emperor Augustus (Western part left) -529 A.D. Roman Catholic Church officially closed the Academy -Edict of Milan: came as Christianity -chaos is everywhere during that time so everyone turn to the church (burning of the Academy was symbolic; monopoly of knowledge) -since Christianity has gotten big, there was internal conflict -Nicene Creed: 381 A.D.; summary of what you should believe in

Human Nature *What makes you human?  reason *cultivate reason – ultimate indicator of humanness *how do we realize our nature? -we can only be rational by being with other rational beings; through social interactions (predisposed to live with one another) Nature-purpose, potential, end-point (Aristotle: human nature is something we aspire to develop) Human Beings are: St. Thomas Aristotle *Social animal; also political *human beings are political animal *at first social then becomes political *unnatural for humans to rule over one *not unnatural another *humans by nature are social (we are not self-sufficient) *the state is natural Ways of Democracy: elections, draw lots, rotation -*the Church was panicking since there‟s conflict bet. faith & reason (you need reason) *what St. Thomas did: claim in faith + claim in law = synthesis *he was trying to reconcile reason & revelation *Theology due to St. Thomas *Christianity needed Plato to be born, but needed Aristotle to survive

*City of God has 22 books; 1st ten books: defense of Christianity 2nd Half *Accdg. to God, if you will love Him, it‟s because of your own will – free will *first rebellion of humans: disobedience; eating of the forbidden fruit; weakness was introduced – original sin -rebellion against their status; infected everyone – we became arrogant, self-centered *human nature = sinful *therefore, St. Augustine believes that we‟re always in a predicament: predispose to do wrong/commit sin *because of original sin, we find it difficult to do what is right; 3 results: 1. Political Dominion (State) – rule of men over men *but helps not to commit sin (state laws) *also considered as partial remedy 2. Private Property 3. Slavery *no one is exempt from punishment that God gave to those who are bad *the only way to be saved is through God Doctrine of Pre-Destination -controversial; God as omnipotent -God already knows where you are going: hell or heaven City of God – heavenly city city of man – earthly city *How do you know where you belong? Even if you know it‟s hard. – Community of followers of God & worshippers End of City of God: enjoy eternal life & peace w/ God End of city of man: you do what you want even though you sin; glory for man: earthly peace *difference is vices & virtues *what excludes for becoming members of city of God is sin *there is no city of God on earth – not even the Church *for St. Augustine, the government/the state is not natural, it‟s a product of sin, only made since humans are inclined to sin; function is antithesis to its origin *for him, don‟t engage in politics *I was absent the next meeting =(

ST. THOMAS AQUINAS (1224 – 1274) – Summa Theologica and On Kingship *Summa Theologica – law

*for Aristotle, happiness is living a life of virtue *for St. Thomas, happiness is salvation of the soul *there is no conflict bet. philosophy & reason, supplementary to each other *if for St. Augustine, state is to prevent us to sin, state exists to scare us so it‟s unnatural; against in man ruling one another; state is a monster; monastic life *but for St. Thomas, the state is natural even if we‟re all angels; so even if Adam & Eve did not commit sin, we still need the state since accident happens; even if your intentions are good, it may still harm other people as long as human interacts; state is empowering; not every time monastic life *Aristotle – everything that‟s natural is good Functions of State: 1. To provide for external & internal peace & order -Why does it have to come from the state? = to have even (equal) peace & security, not just the elites etc. 2. To promote the moral well-being of the citizen -only as far as it can be done through laws -your law will make the kind of citizens you want -back-up by sanctions -carrot & stick approach 3. To ensure that there‟s an adequate supply of material necessities -not doted so the citizens won‟t be dependent *if done & have the 3, potentials & virtues will be realized (you‟re responsible for your citizen & fellow) *for St. Thomas, society, government 7 law can all help in human development *secular authority is not a threat, it has + advantages *the state exist to provide the environment for the life that is founded to cultivate relationship with God Why due law is important? -intended to attain the common good (welfare of the entire community) What is law? - an order based on right reason for the common good, made by those in charge of the community, promulgated, backed by a system of sanctions 4 Types of Laws (to show there‟s no conflict bet. reason & faith) 1. Eternal Law -made by the creator; doctrine of the pre-destination understood only by God; created to rule the universe; for everything -we cannot understand this since this is beyond human reason (divine reason) 2. Natural Law -kind of law humans can perceive -because we are given reason, we can perceive orders by God through nature -the right reason of man -based on participation of eternal law in rationality of man -assumption is that it can guide human beings, society & political order (since human has the capacity to grasp truth from nature through reason; but still what we perceive have differences sue to different experiences) 3. Divine Law -10 commandments -directs human beings to our supernatural ends - reconciles the conflicting laws human have 4. Human Law -adopted the natural & divine law

-trying to apply & enforce natural law -important since it addresses particular problems the human beings experienced -practical application of natural & divine law -tries to direct our human actions -if it does not conform the natural & eternal law, it si distorted/perverted *importance of human development: you can help your fellowmen *the state exists to provide the conditions for good life ON KINGSHIP *functions of state & what your leader should be *believes that the best kind of government is monarchy why? – if you emulate God, that could be good -worst kind of government is tyranny – violates all types of law -still subjected to the priests since they know the laws & rules) -aim is to attain peace -one individual is much more capable of ruling than 2 or 3, why: divine universe – there is only one ruler) -monarchy is the best but hard to implement since it has the tendency to become tyrant

2. citizen army – recruit army from your own citizens; loyalty since they identify with the prince (assumption) 3. ? (I fell asleep -_-) 2. you must have the ability to fight as a man & as a beast *as a man – follow the rules; not always efficient *as a beast – physical ability; be like the lion (feared by all) & fox (witty & cunning) *learn to use force & fraud 3. the possession of the apparent possession of good qualities *to actually possess them is a disadvantage *only appear to be benevolent, not necessary to have it

*Aristotle: double capacity – knows to follow & knows to rule (copied by St. Thomas)

4. it’s better to be feared than to be loved, if you can’t have both *why? love is a weak bond that can be easily broken if it‟s not to your interest *fear, it is not founded on any self-interest; founded on apprehension of punishment; always work *caution if you‟re feared, make sure you are not hated; the moment you become hated, people will revolt prevent by: do not touch their property, includes women; don‟t increase taxes without their consent

*”right to resist” – doctrine of tyrannicide -worst of tyrant – kill by a representative of the people (sense of legitimacy & for the common good) -if humans can‟t get rid of the tyrant: God will make sure & pray for the tyrant

why do you need the people? *the elites know everything about you *the people are busy, easily swayed by appearances *easily sway the majority; they do not ask a lot of things

*state is independent from the church (spiritual matters)

5. you should be good at timing *give punishments immediately & give benefits gradually

Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527)– The Prince

6. virtu vs. fortuna *fortuna: either bad or good; you cannot rely on things you can‟t control *virtu: good qualities – strength, power, honor; can predict the outcome, control

*Machiavelli was talking only about the leader as a ruler of the state; first realist, saw the world the way it was; cunning, ruthless, deceiving; *politics – currency is power *The Prince – a pamphlet; handbook on practical knowledge of statecraft *so revolutionary & shocking *M. was modern thinker at that time; objectively approach the state – scientific approach to statecraft *managing the state could be learned *state is not art; it‟s simple to lead – look at the history, look at the stories, emulate, done *if you are a student of politics, if you want to be a good leader, look at history *M.‟s view of human nature: predictable, we are all ego-centric, self-interested; selfish, undependable, cowardly, deceivable 1st part: how different parts of the state can be governed; all city-states are only of 2 kinds: 1. The Republics – people themselves/representatives are leaders 2. Principalities – ruler is the prince; tools needed to govern it: an army & virtu (?) – skills as a person rather than good fortune 3 types of municipalities: 1. old – the prince/ruler is a descendant of the previous (inherit); easiest to govern; tells you that the system works; maintain 2. new – most difficult; you conquered them; 2 options: either remove/kill all people on that area, or you colonized them (put your own people to „interbreed”); inflict all cruelties, be the worst but over time give them benefits 3. mixed – you are a new prince, conquer a new state; hard to maintain; the act of you becoming a prince already offended them; do you have the same language/culture? maintain in 2 steps: 1. kill the family of existing ruler. why? so nobody will revenge on you 2. shouldn‟t change the laws or taxes.. thinking? doesn‟‟t matter who the prince is, comfort is there *what if different language/culture? – colonized them, treat as new (no. 2^) *Machiavelli doesn‟t make politics with ethics; governments are judged based on power *end of state: to acquire, maintain & expand political power *epitome of separation of church and state *M was amoral – a person who does not based on ethical conduct *politics is governed by conflict; politics vs. ethics “The end justifies the means” *talking about politics *if a ruler contrives to empower the state, then the means he used will be judged *if the state‟s power is protected, the mean is justified *as long as the interest of the state is promoted, whatever the action taken will be justified Qualities how to be a successful prince: 1. concentrate on the study of war 3 types of army: 1. mercenaries – work for you as long as you pay them; their loyalty is not to you

View more...


Copyright ©2017 KUPDF Inc.