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The Commonwealth and the Need for a Sovereign The natural state of men according to Hobbes is that condition which is called war and such a war as is of every man against every man Leviathan chpt 13 sect 8 In the Leviathan Hobbes clearly presents an image of man that consists of misery chaos and anarchy He believes that if the society of men is not controlled by a common power to keep them all in awe Leviathan chpt 13 sect 8 the natural passions of men dictate the way of life And thus since a sense of justice injustice order and obedience rely on the implementation of an organized rule it follows that if society is going to succeed the need for a Commonwealth is necessary Not only does Hobbes deem it necessary that there exists a Commonwealth but there must also exist a Sovereign to rule over it and be the representative voice of all those who are his subjects In this essay I will first explain why it is that Hobbes subscribes to the notion that a commonwealth requires a sovereign and furthermore why Hobbes gives a multitude of characteristics that sovereignty possesses Self preservation is one of the most natural instincts of man With close observation it can be observed that the actions of all men are based upon this one basic principle survival It is therefore evident that to ensure preservation promote liberty and to ultimately escape from the condition of war there must be a common power to hold men in awe in other words men must live within a commonwealth However it is not merely enough to prescribe simply a commonwealth for survival but there also must be a visible singular power to further control the passions that strive to control mens lives Without this central power which Hobbes calls the sovereign the laws of nature justice equity modesty and mercy which are opposite from
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