Burke and his beliefs; in line with or against Rousseau?
When dealing with issues present in Burke’s reading, one may ask the question of what is Burke’s underlying belief. What is it that Burke is trying to get across and how is he trying to do so? Burke focuses on conservatism, on the meaning behind tradition and the need to go back to religious roots. When reading Burke, one can realize the stark difference between the opinion of Rousseau and of his own. Rousseau believes that everything changes through time and that one needs to govern and achieve order through adaptive behavior. Burke believes that even though time passes and new things occur, one needs to go back to the words of God and follow what is morally considered acceptable. Burke’s beliefs truly point to the idea of respecting history and the institutions that everything is founded based on. While Burke respects tradition, he also acknowledges modern change and evolution. He believes that a change in a man and a change within a society happen through the process of change along with the tradition of old. When he addresses the wisdom of individuals, he accredits the knowledge held within a person to the innate tradition held within. While some may believe that Burke and Rousseau are in complete opposition, some question whether they are in some ways similar.