Social Philosophy

Thomas Hobbes (Wikimedia Commonns)

Social philosophy is about the relationship between the individual human being and his society. If the essence of man consists of love, as both science and metaphy-sics teach us (see above), then this anthropological observation has consequences not only for wisdom-oriented psychology and ethics, but also for the society in which we live. After all, that society is formed of people who have a certain image of themselves and others. Since Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) the image of man as an egoistic and therefore ruthless creature (homo homini lupus) has dominated. This wild beast can only be kept in check by means of rules and laws. In business, but also in many other sectors of society, competition plays a crucial role, confirming the image of a warring man. In films, where brute force often dominates, you see this lovelessness return. Everyday life, too, is often characterized by harshness and unscrupulousness. In short, today’s society is permeated with fear, distrust and aggression.

On the other hand, you can also foundation a society on the two philosophical foundations of the maieutics school. To begin with, this has the effect of honestly acknowledging the finitude of life (experience of doubt). The proper response to this, however, does not consist of selfishness (survival of the fittest), political repression, and blind lust for power, for these in fact only reinforce finitude. Rather, the right reaction consists of loving oneself, one’s neighbor and nature (totality experience). This reaction breaks through egoism and brings us back to our true being and thus to our primal principle. As a result, a totally different society will emerge. If this happens globally, as universal theology aims to do, then a totally different world will emerge.

A world that seemed utopian until then will transform into reality. Religious wars and other conflicts will cease permanently. Feelings of meaninglessness (nihilism) give way to accep-tance, contentment, and deep joy. With this basic attitude, one approaches one’s fellow man, nature and the entire planet with compassion. Values like truth and justice are highly res-pected, for they confirm the love for ourselves and for the other. Political oppositions melt away like snow in the sun, because loving warmth is the absolute criterion. Talents fully develop, leading to joy for the individual and maximum service to society. Every human being is valued without exception and receives amply what he or she needs, both physically and mentally. This eliminates the need for money or power; at most, there is an efficient division of labour. Thus humanity fulfils its potential for spiritual growth: it has finally reached social maturity.

Social philosophy can further explore and elaborate this new vision in all the areas men-tioned.