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Soul Body and Augustines and Machiavellis Views on Human Nature Machiavelli insists that he sees men as they really are rather than we might wish men to be XV p 62 Augustine also depicts how men actually live in the City of God How are Augustines and Machiavellis understandings of human nature similar to and different from each other How does these differences affect their political philosophy Augustine and Machiavelli are similar in their pessimistic views toward human nature looking at human self-love and self-interested full of evil cruelty betrayal violence and war Yet the two views are different fundamentally Augustine thinks that men are not evil by nature but by their choice of disobedience to God but Machiavelli believes that men are naturally sinful For Augustine love of self rather than God is driven by soul by placing self ahead of God By contrast Machiavelli thinks that evil is maintained by self-interest which is due to the insatiable lust of body However They both acknowledge that moral obligations do exist in human beings Because of their different views of the cause of evil Augustine and Machiavelli achieve their peace in different ways In order to compare the philosophy of the two thinkers we need to examine their views Augustine claims that no one is evil by nature p 590 because all people are created by God in His own image and God is by no means evil nor will He make anything evil One is evil because of some fault namely living according to man instead of God Moreover contrary to many classical philosophical thoughts Augustine thinks that of the two parts of self soul and body p 206 soul is the cause of evil It is not the flesh of body that makes people sin but souls placing of the flesh over the divine God In the Garden of Eden Adam and Eve live in abundance but still betray God When they place
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