Declaration of Independence Enlightened Thought Essay
How it works
The Declaration of Independence is a document declaring the colonies’ freedom from Britain; however, it was not an original work, many of the thoughts were just being used from the English philosopher John Locke. Some of the theories that John Locke created, Thomas Jefferson used, in the Declaration of Independence, such as the ideas of natural rights, how to run the government, and identifying the basis of government. In many ways the Declaration of Independence seems as if it is using ideas that belonged to John Locke, lots of the ideas that Jefferson wrote originated directly from John Locke’s ideas on government. These ideas weren’t taken on accident, they were an enlightened thought based off the Locke’s theories of government and freedoms.
One way that the Declaration of Independence took from John Locke’s ideas on government, is the thought that everyone deserves rights and that cannot be taken away from the governed. Also under the topic of natural rights the Declaration of Independence says “…unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” This line is very close to John Locke’s theory that everyone is entitled to life, liberty, and property. It is no coincidence that these ideas are so closely linked, it is because the Declaration of Independence is an enlightened thought based on John Locke’s ideas on government.
How it works
Thomas Jefferson, the writer of the Declaration of Independence, was a man of enlightened thoughts, he knew John Locke’s theories on government. Therefore, the Declaration of Independence was somewhat taken from John Locke’s theories and ideas of how government should be conducted. John Locke believed that the government should be used for the governed people’s convenience. Throughout the Declaration of Independence, it makes it clear that “…Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed…”. John Locke’s theory was almost identical to this quote, taken directly from the Declaration of Independence.
Some people believe that the Declaration of Independence is an original work written by Thomas Jefferson. Although, some ideas are the same, it could be a coincidence; or Thomas Jefferson simply had the same ideas that philosopher John Locke created. Both men believed that people were born with natural rights and that the government should be at the convenience of the governed. Those ideas were originally thought of by John Locke in the 1600s, and the Declaration of Independence was written with some similar ideas about 1000 years later. However, this does not mean that the ideas had been copied, it simply means that the two men shared ideas of how government should be run.
The Declaration of Independence is a document declaring our breaking free from Britain. Although some believe the document was an original work, it is actually full enlightened thoughts that existed prior to the document. John Locke was an English philosopher who had many theories of natural rights and how government should be run. Throughout the Declaration of Independence, John Locke’s theories are restated many times, including his ideas of the governed should have control of the government and that everyone is entitled to life, liberty, and property.