Is man born to be competitive and destructive or do we start out with a blank slate when we are born? I believe that we are born with a blank slate and we are eventually formed by our surroundings as well as our life experiences. Although I can still see where Hobbes can think that everyone is born to be competitive, but destructive I cannot see. While people are growing up they should be able to make their personality how they want it, they don’t have to become destructive or competitive right away they can become whoever they want to be.
With reading both of these excerpts over and over again, I am more on the side with Locke’s idea of the blank slate. I just believe that not everyone is born to be destructive. I personally think that Hobbes and Locke have two different ideas, in the excerpt of Hobbes’ book Leviathan, Hobbes says that man by nature is competitive and destructive and needs a sole ruler to keep them in check. While in John Locke’s excerpt from Of Ideas he displays his idea of nurture through sensation and reflection. Hobbes uses the idea of nature in his excerpt and Locke uses the idea of nurture in his excerpt.
So they are battling between the ideas of nature versus nurture. In Hobbes idea of nature he says that men are born to be competitive and destructive, and as they grow up they become even more competitive and destructive. While in Locke’s excerpt he uses the idea of nurture, which is where you adapt to your environment, or your built into your environment. In Hobbes excerpt he uses competition, war, destruction, conflict and a few other examples to show the idea of nature. He kind of says that everybody has their own way to fight; like the strong have their strength and the weak could have some special skills to defeat the strong.
Locke says in his book Of Ideas that “ all ideas come for sensation or reflection” (126). The sensations we use are sight, smell, touch, and through your hearing. And through reflection, when you reflect on the good and bad things that happen throughout your and the people around you life. Hopefully after reading both of these excerpts you have decided which one you agree with more. But for me there really isn’t a question. I believe Locke’s idea is more reasonable than Hobbes mainly, like I stated above, because you start with a blank slate and you form it the way you want it to be, your not forced to be competitive or destructive.