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Rock, Paper, Scissors, HOBBES

October 6, 2010

In discussion class this week we played rock, paper, scissors shoot to imitate Hobbes’ “state of nature.”  Before playing, most of the students in the class didn’t imagine what would occur during this game, and what it would show us.  Before the game started we listed the necessary components of Hobbes’ state of nature, and the different options that we can use during the process of the game.  We learned that this included, fight, negotiate, or the improbable option of running away.  Would Hobbes’ state of nature be a realistic way of living?  How did we act during this process?

This process taught us several new aspects in Hobbes’ state of nature.  While performing this activity, it was evident that there was no security in this state of living.  His sense of state of nature had too many faults, and the lack of security made everyone uneasy.  Imagine living in a world, where resources were always being stolen, and there was no definitive source of food every night.  Every night is a struggle in this world, and this struggle for survival was perpetual.  This struggle eventually lead to the idea that everyone fought in a sense to be the “top dog.”  Although this places a target on the person with the most resources, it would be a constant intense competition to have the most resources and food.   Everyone was equal, and everyone pursued the same objective of survival, thus creating and even more chaotic state to live in.

Hobbes’ state of nature as previously showed is an unbearable place to live in.  After demonstrated by the exercise in class, the lack of security plus the distrust between the people is no way to live.  The combination of fear and struggle for survival describes this state, and that is no way to live ones life.  In conclusion, Hobbes’ has some interesting points, and fear is inevitable in someone’s life; however, living in our current society is way more realistic and beneficiary to the citizens than living in Hobbes’ state of nature.

  1. jaclburr permalink
    October 6, 2010 5:23 PM

    I agree. There are certainly many situations where people find themselves in a “state of nature”, as there have been countless examples throughout time. Yet, this is an uncomfortable and unstable way to live, and would undoubtedly lead to unhappiness in people’s lives. I suppose this gives rise to the reasons people exit the state of nature,after all!

  2. Jorge Rodriguez-Larrain permalink
    October 6, 2010 5:31 PM

    Although I agree with most of the article, I think that it’s important to note that the activity of the discussion did not fully show the real state of nature, this is because there are many factors that will affect the state of nature and these factors couldn’t have been represented in the activity. But it did clarify the main idea of Hobbes’s state of nature, which is not a pleasant condition, this way Hobbes’s suggests that we want to abandon the state of nature by mutual contracts and authorization.

  3. Taylor Fields permalink
    October 7, 2010 1:31 PM

    First I won this activity. So that was awesome.You state ‘Hobbes’ state of nature as previously showed is an unbearable place to live in. ‘ and coming from the perspective of the victor (again, awesome) I would have to agree. When I had every index card everybody wanted to challenge me- I had no serenity, no peace. I found my self in a ball on the floor hiding from my competitors. I inevitably had to accept a challenge, and accidentally dropped my cards. Everyone flocked and stole. Hobbes state of nature is miserable for everyone, the poor, middle, and upper class. The poor are always desperate, the middle are always worried, the upper are always bothered. Hobbes state of nature is an unbearable place to live because there is never peace of mind and there is never security, always competition.

  4. Andrew Berman permalink
    October 8, 2010 2:39 PM

    ‘Hobbes’ state of nature as previously showed is an unbearable place to live in.’ I think that this quote was the purpose of the exercise. Within the first two minutes of the exercise I ‘committed suicide’ and sat out the rest of the game. I was overwhelmed of how selfish people acted and how everyone was out to get each other. People were stealing from each other not caring if that was the other persons only ‘food’. That game made me realize why there is a necessity for law and order.

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