Abstraction in its main sense is a conceptual process where general rules and concepts are derived from the usage and classification of specific examples, literal signifiers, first principles, or other methods. "An abstraction" is the outcome of this process—a concept that acts as a super-categorical noun for all subordinate concepts, connects any related concepts as a group, field, or category. Conceptual abstractions may be formed by filtering the information content of a concept or an observable phenomenon, selecting only the aspects which are relevant for a particular subjectively valued purpose. For example, abstracting a leather soccer ball to the more general idea of a ball selects only the information on general ball attributes and behavior, but not eliminating, the other phenomenal and cognitive characteristics of that particular ball. In a type–token distinction, a type is more abstract than its tokens. Abstraction in its secondary use is a material process, discussed in the themes below.
Thinking in abstractions is considered by anthropologists and sociologists to be one of the key traits in modern human behaviour, believed to have developed between 50,000 and 100,000 years ago. Its development is to have been connected with the development of human language, which appears to both involve and facilitate abstract thinking. Abstraction involves induction of ideas or the synthesis of particular facts into one general theory about something, it is the opposite of specification, the analysis or breaking-down of a general idea or abstraction into concrete facts. Abstraction can be illustrated with Francis Bacon's Novum Organum, a book of modern scientific philosophy written in the late Elizabethan era of England to encourage modern thinkers to collect specific facts before making any generalizations. Bacon used and promoted induction as an abstraction tool, it countered the ancient deductive-thinking approach that had dominated the intellectual world since the times of Greek philosophers like Thales and Aristotle.
Thales believed that everything in the universe comes from water. He deduced or specified from a general idea, "everything is water", to the specific forms of water such as ice, snow and rivers. Modern scientists can use the opposite approach of abstraction, or going from particular facts collected into one general idea, such as the motion of the planets; when determining that the sun is the center of our solar system, scientists had to utilize thousands of measurements to conclude that Mars moves in an elliptical orbit about the sun, or to assemble multiple specific facts into the law of falling bodies. An abstraction can be seen as a compression process, mapping multiple different pieces of constituent data to a single piece of abstract data; this conceptual scheme emphasizes the inherent equality of both constituent and abstract data, thus avoiding problems arising from the distinction between "abstract" and "concrete". In this sense the process of abstraction entails the identification of similarities between objects, the process of associating these objects with an abstraction.
For example, picture 1 below illustrates the concrete relationship "Cat sits on Mat". Chains of abstractions can be construed, moving from neural impulses arising from sensory perception to basic abstractions such as color or shape, to experiential abstractions such as a specific cat, to semantic abstractions such as the "idea" of a CAT, to classes of objects such as "mammals" and categories such as "object" as opposed to "action". For example, graph 1 below expresses the abstraction "agent sits on location"; this conceptual scheme entails no specific hierarchical taxonomy, only a progressive exclusion of detail. Non-existent things in any particular place and time are seen as abstract. By contrast, instances, or members, of such an abstract thing might exist in many different places and times; those abstract things are said to be multiply instantiated, in the sense of picture 1, picture 2, etc. shown below. It is not sufficient, however, to define abstract ideas as those that can be instantiated and to define abstraction as the movement in the opposite direction to instantiation.
Doing so would make the concepts "cat" and "telephone" abstract ideas since despite their varying appearances, a particular cat or a particular telephone is an instance of the concept "cat" or the concept "telephone". Although the concepts "cat" and "telephone" are abstractions, they are not abstract in the sense of the objects in graph 1 below. We might look at other graphs, in a progression from cat to mammal to animal, see that animal is more abstract than mammal. Confusingly, some philosophies refer to tropes as abstract particulars—e.g. The particular redness of a particular apple is an abstract particular; this is similar to qualia and sumbebekos. Still retaining the primary meaning of'abstrere' or'to draw away from', the abstraction of money, for example, works by drawing away from the particular value of things allowing incommensurate objects to be compared. Karl Marx's writing on the commodity abstraction recognizes a parallel process; the state
Age of Enlightenment
The Age of Enlightenment was an intellectual and philosophical movement that dominated the world of ideas in Europe during the 18th century, the "Century of Philosophy". Some consider Descartes' 1637 statement "I think" to have sparked the period. Others cite the publication of Isaac Newton's Principia Mathematica. French historians traditionally date the Enlightenment from 1715 to 1789, from the beginning of the reign of Louis XV until the French Revolution. Most end it with the turn of the 19th century. Philosophers and scientists of the period circulated their ideas through meetings at scientific academies, Masonic lodges, literary salons, coffeehouses and in printed books and pamphlets; the ideas of the Enlightenment undermined the authority of the monarchy and the Church and paved the way for the political revolutions of the 18th and 19th centuries. A variety of 19th-century movements, including liberalism and neo-classicism, trace their intellectual heritage to the Enlightenment; the Enlightenment included a range of ideas centered on reason as the primary source of knowledge and advanced ideals such as liberty, toleration, constitutional government and separation of church and state.
In France, the central doctrines of the Enlightenment philosophers were individual liberty and religious tolerance, in opposition to an absolute monarchy and the fixed dogmas of the Roman Catholic Church. The Enlightenment was marked by an emphasis on the scientific method and reductionism, along with increased questioning of religious orthodoxy—an attitude captured by the phrase Sapere aude; the Age of Enlightenment was preceded by and associated with the scientific revolution. Earlier philosophers whose work influenced the Enlightenment included Bacon, Descartes and Spinoza; the major figures of the Enlightenment included Beccaria, Hume, Montesquieu, Adam Smith, Voltaire. Some European rulers, including Catherine II of Russia, Joseph II of Austria and Frederick II of Prussia, tried to apply Enlightenment thought on religious and political tolerance, which became known as enlightened absolutism. Benjamin Franklin visited Europe and contributed to the scientific and political debates there and brought the newest ideas back to Philadelphia.
Thomas Jefferson followed European ideas and incorporated some of the ideals of the Enlightenment into the Declaration of Independence. One of his peers, James Madison, incorporated these ideals into the United States Constitution during its framing in 1787; the most influential publication of the Enlightenment was the Encyclopédie. Published between 1751 and 1772 in thirty-five volumes, it was compiled by Diderot, d'Alembert and a team of 150 scientists and philosophers, it helped spread the ideas of the Enlightenment across Europe and beyond. Other landmark publications were Voltaire's Dictionnaire Letters on the English; the ideas of the Enlightenment played a major role in inspiring the French Revolution, which began in 1789. After the Revolution, the Enlightenment was followed by the intellectual movement known as Romanticism. René Descartes' rationalist philosophy laid the foundation for enlightenment thinking, his attempt to construct the sciences on a secure metaphysical foundation was not as successful as his method of doubt applied in philosophic areas leading to a dualistic doctrine of mind and matter.
His skepticism was refined by John Locke's Essay Concerning Human Understanding and David Hume's writings in the 1740s. His dualism was challenged by Spinoza's uncompromising assertion of the unity of matter in his Tractatus and Ethics; these laid down two distinct lines of Enlightenment thought: first, the moderate variety, following Descartes and Christian Wolff, which sought accommodation between reform and the traditional systems of power and faith, second, the radical enlightenment, inspired by the philosophy of Spinoza, advocating democracy, individual liberty, freedom of expression and eradication of religious authority. The moderate variety tended to be deistic, whereas the radical tendency separated the basis of morality from theology. Both lines of thought were opposed by a conservative Counter-Enlightenment, which sought a return to faith. In the mid-18th century, Paris became the center of an explosion of philosophic and scientific activity challenging traditional doctrines and dogmas.
The philosophic movement was led by Voltaire and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, who argued for a society based upon reason as in ancient Greece rather than faith and Catholic doctrine, for a new civil order based on natural law, for science based on experiments and observation. The political philosopher Montesquieu introduced the idea of a separation of powers in a government, a concept, enthusiastically adopted by the authors of the United States Constitution. While the Philosophes of the French Enlightenment were not revolutionaries and many were members of the nobility, their ideas played an important part in undermining the legitimacy of the Old Regime and shaping the French Revolution. Francis Hutcheson, a moral philosopher, described the utilitarian and consequentialist principle that virtue is that which provides, in his words, "the greatest happiness for the greatest numbers". Much of what is incorporated in the scientific method
In Christian theology, universal reconciliation is the doctrine that all sinful and alienated human souls—because of divine love and mercy—will be reconciled to God. The doctrine has been rejected by Christian religion, which holds to the doctrine of special salvation that only some members of humanity will enter heaven, but it has received support from many prestigious Christian thinkers as well as many groups of Christians; the Bible itself has a variety of verses. Universal salvation may be related to the perception of a problem of Hell, standing opposed to ideas such as endless conscious torment in Hell, but may include a period of finite punishment similar to a state of purgatory. Believers in universal reconciliation may support the view that while there may be a real "Hell" of some kind, it is neither a place of endless suffering nor a place where the spirits of human beings are ultimately'annihilated' after enduring the just amount of divine retribution; the concept of reconciliation is related to the concept of salvation—i.e.
Salvation from spiritual and physical death—such that the term "universal salvation" is functionally equivalent. Universalists espouse various theological beliefs concerning the process or state of salvation, but all adhere to the view that salvation history concludes with the reconciliation of the entire human race to God. Many adherents assert that the suffering and crucifixion of Jesus Christ constitute the mechanism that provides redemption for all humanity and atonement for all sins. Unitarian Universalism is a religious movement which emerged in part from the Universalist Church, but it no longer holds any official doctrinal positions, being a non-creedal faith. Universal reconciliation, remains a popular viewpoint among many congregations and individual believers including many that have not at all associated with said church. An alternative to universal reconciliation is the doctrine of annihilationism in combination with Christian conditionalism; some Christian leaders, such as influential theologian Martin Luther, have hypothesized other concepts such as'soul death'.
As one bishop and professor of philosophy has put it, "In the final analysis, the question of salvation is always an inquiry into the balancing of human free will with God's mercy and forgiveness." The Bible itself has, as referred to before, a variety of verses on the subject that appear to be contradictory if not given additional reader interpretation. Influential theologians Emil Brunner and J. A. T. Robinson argue that these verses can be put into two distinct categories: damnation for some or eventual reconciliation for all; the mixed message about the afterlife described in the Bible has been commented on by scholars as early as 1917. Some sections of the Old Testament appear to argue that no afterlife exists for the good and just, with the Book of Ecclesiastes telling the faithful: "The dead know nothing, they have no reward and the memory of them are lost". The traditional view held by Christian organized religion comes from a variety of Biblical citations, it is stated in John 3:36, "Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them."
2 Thessalonians 1:8-9 declares, "Those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus, they will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might."The Gospel of Luke statement by Jesus about salvation being a "narrow" doorway is quoted, with Luke 13:23-25 reading: "Someone asked him,'Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?' He said to them,'Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to.' Once the owner of the house gets up and closes the door, you will stand outside knocking and pleading,'Sir, open the door for us.' But he will answer,'I don’t know you or where you come from.'" Books of the Bible argued to support the idea of full reconciliation include the First Epistle to the Corinthians. The sections of 1 Corinthians 15:22, "As all die in Adam, so all will be made alive in Christ", 1 Corinthians 15:28, "God will be all in all", are cited.
Verses that seem to contradict the tradition of complete damnation and come up in arguments include Lamentations 3:31-33, "For no one is cast off by the Lord forever. Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love", 1 Timothy 4:10, "We have put our hope in the living God, the Savior of all people, of those who believe."As well, the Epistle to the Colossians receives attention, with Colossians 1:17-20 reading: "He is before all things, in Him all things hold together. And He is the head of the body, the church. For God was pleased to have all His fullness dwell in Him, through Him to reconcile to Himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through His blood, shed on the cross." Broadly speaking, most historical advocates of Christian universalism throughout the years did so from the perspective of accepting the traditional Biblical canon as divinely inspired and without transcription error but rejecting strict Biblical l
Science of Mind was established in 1927 by Ernest Holmes and is a spiritual and metaphysical religious movement within the New Thought movement. In general, the term "Science of Mind" applies to the teachings, while the term "Religious Science" applies to the organizations. However, adherents use the terms interchangeably. In his book, The Science of Mind, Ernest Holmes stated "Religious Science is a correlation of laws of science, opinions of philosophy, revelations of religion applied to human needs and the aspirations of man." He stated that Religious Science/Science of Mind is not based on any "authority" of established beliefs, but rather on "what it can accomplish" for the people who practice it. Today the International Centers for Spiritual Living, the United Centers for Spiritual Living and Global Religious Science Ministries are the main denominations promoting Religious Science. Ernest Holmes did not intend for RS/SOM to be a "church", but rather a teaching institution. In that spirit, many member "churches" have traditionally referred to themselves as "centers."
The mental healing work of Phineas Quimby was a source of inspiration to much of the New Thought movement, including RS/SOM. Ernest Holmes was strongly influenced by Emma Curtis Hopkins, a former student of Christian Science her "Scientific Christian Mental Practice", a direct precursor to Holmes' "Spiritual Mind Treatment", by the writings of Judge Thomas Troward and Ralph Waldo Emerson, as he developed his own synthesis, which became known as Religious Science or Science of Mind. In 1926 Holmes published The Science of Mind, which references the teachings of Jesus Christ the Bible and Buddha. Holmes established the Institute for Religious School of Philosophy in Los Angeles; this organization would become the Church of Religious Science. Holmes had studied another New Thought teaching, Divine Science, he was an ordained Divine Science Minister, he saw humans as being "open at the top"—that is, open to evolutionary improvement of consciousness in all areas of life. The concepts of "Open at the Top" and "New Thought" have inspired RS/SOM organizations and their teachings to evolve over the years.
As stated in the book New Thought: A Practical American Spirituality, "New Thought still is evolving. Many believe it might be the quintessential spirituality for the next millennium." His teachings attracted famous celebrities of his time including Cecil B. DeMille, Peggy Lee, Cary Grant; the RS/SOM teaching incorporates idealistic and panentheistic philosophies. RS/SOM teaches that all beings are expressions of and part of Infinite Intelligence known as Spirit, Christ Consciousness, or God, it teaches that, because God is all there is in the universe, its power can be used by all humans to the extent that they recognize and align themselves with Its presence. Ernest Holmes said "God is not... a person, but a Universal Presence... in our own soul operating through our own consciousness."The Introduction to "The Science of Mind" text describes "The Thing Itself", "The Way It Works," "What It Does," and "How to Use It." Although Holmes was criticized for not focusing much on love, he did say that "Love rules through Law." and "Love points the way and Law makes the way possible."
The "Law of Cause and Effect" states that every action has a consequence — creative, destructive, or neutral. It can be described as Jesus Christ stated "You reap what you sow" and "The bread you cast upon the water, comes back to you"; the Law of Attraction is one aspect of that Law. It differs from the Hindu definition of karma in that it is not related to reincarnation and that it happens in this life. Personal responsibility is a major tenet of RS/SOM. RS/SOM teaches that people can achieve more fulfilling lives through the practice called Spiritual Mind Treatment, or Affirmative Prayer. Spiritual Mind Treatment is a step-by-step process, in which one states the desired outcome as if it has happened. In that way, it differs from traditional prayer, since it does not ask an entity separate from itself to act, it declares human partnership with Infinite Intelligence to achieve success. Treatment is to be stated as personal, positive and present; the goal is to gain clarity in thinking that guides action to be consistent with the desired outcome.
The Treatment is believed to set off a new chain of causation in Mind that leads one to act according to the good for which one is treating. Spiritual Mind Treatment, as taught in RS/SOM centers, contains five steps: Recognition, Realization and Release; some adherents of RS/SOM use supplemental meditation techniques, including "Visioning". Religious Science credo, adapted from Ernest Holmes "What I Believe": We believe in God, the living Spirit Almighty; this One is not absorbed by Its creation. The manifest universe is the body of God. We believe in the individualization of the Spirit in Us, that all people are individualizations of the One Spirit. We believe in the eternality, the immortality, the continui
A referent is a person or thing to which a name – a linguistic expression or other symbol – refers. For example, in the sentence Mary saw me, the referent of the word Mary is the particular person called Mary, being spoken of, while the referent of the word me is the person uttering the sentence. Two expressions which have the same referent are said to be co-referential. In the sentence John had his dog with him, for instance, the noun John and the pronoun him are co-referential, since they both refer to the same person; the word'referent' may be considered to derive from the Latin referentem, the present participle of the verb referre. It is defined in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary as "one, referred to. A subsequent meaning is "a word referring to another"; the next meaning, which appears to stand in opposition to the previous meaning, as well as to the meaning implied by the etymology, is nonetheless the one which has gained currency: "that to which something has reference". This sense is first recorded in Richards' The Meaning of Meaning.
In logic, the word referent is sometimes used to denote one of the two objects participating in a relation, the other being called the relatum. In fields such as semantics and the theory of reference, a distinction is made between a referent and a reference. Reference is a relationship in which a sign signifies something; the referent may be an actual person or object, or may be something more abstract, such as a set of actions. Reference and referents were considered at length in the 1923 book The Meaning of Meaning by the Cambridge scholars C. K. Ogden and I. A. Richards. Ogden has pointed out that reference is a psychological process, that referents themselves may be psychological – existing in the imagination of the referrer, not in the real world. For further ideas related to this observation, see failure to refer. Considerations of the possible arrangement of expressions which may be co-referential – having the same referent – have been undertaken by linguists engaged in the study of syntax since Noam Chomsky's launch of Government and Binding Theory in the 1980s.
The subject of binding is concerned with the possible syntactic positions of co-referential noun phrases and pronouns. Attempts are made to explain phenomena such as that illustrated by the following pair of sentences: Before she dried off, Mary was wet, she dried off. In the first sentence and Mary may have the same referent, but in the second they cannot. More details of these considerations can be found in the articles on GBT and binding linked to above. Considerations of references and their referents are sometimes of importance in computing and programming. References play a role in the Perl programming language, for example, the ref function is used to obtain the type of the referent of an object. Referring expression Language-game Private language argument The dictionary definition of referent at Wiktionary
Church of Divine Science
The Church of Divine Science is a religious movement within the wider New Thought movement. The group was formalized in San Francisco in the 1880s under Malinda Cramer. "In March 1888 Cramer and her husband Frank chartered the'Home College of Spiritual Science'. Two months Cramer changed the name of her school to the'Home College of Divine Science'." during the dramatic growth of the New Thought Movement in the United States. The church's official founders were Malinda Cramer and Nona L. Brooks, with Fannie Brooks James, Alethea Brooks Small and Kate Bingham playing decisive roles. Both Phineas Quimby and Emma Curtis Hopkins, noted New Thought leader of the day, were direct influences. Nona Brooks was introduced to Hopkins's teachings through a student of Hopkins in Colorado; this student was most Kate Bingham, who lived in Pueblo and was the second wife of Frank Bingham, a noted rancher. Kate Bingham had been exposed to the tenets of Christian Science on a trip she had made to Chicago in the 1870s.
A doctor in Pueblo had told a pregnant Kate. Kate went East to have her pregnancy terminated, there being no doctors in Colorado who could perform the operation at that time. While on the train to Chicago, Kate met a Christian Scientist who told her she would be able to give birth if she properly prepared her mind and spirit. In the end, Kate had the child at the home of her Christian Scientist friend; when Kate returned home from her trip, she spoke about Christian Science to some of her friends, including Nona Brooks, the women began to have weekly meetings at 318 West 9th Street in Pueblo, the winter home of the family which owned the Hopkins-Bingham ranch. The women consciously set about to adapt Christian Science philosophy to what they felt was a more pragmatic application of the Divine Spirit. For instance, Divine Science, instead of relying on prayer and positive thinking, permitted the consultation of medical professionals. After the San Francisco earthquake of 1906 and the death of Malinda Cramer, the headquarters moved back to Colorado, establishing its headquarters in Denver to move the base of its operations to Pueblo.
Divine Science defines itself as "an organized teaching pertaining to God and the manifestation of God in Creation." It holds that its foundation truth is "that limitless Being, God, is Good, is present everywhere, is the All of everything." It defines God as "pure Spirit, changeless, manifesting in and as all Creation, yet transcending Creation" and that evil is therefore neither necessary nor permanent and has no reality within itself, but has existence only so long as human beings support it by believing in it. Like other New Thought churches, Divine Science considers healing important, emulates the work of Jesus Christ, who in the New Testament cures many people; the Denver Church's founder, Nona Brooks, stated, "The whole of Divine Science is the practice of the Presence of God. Truth comes through the Bible, Affirmative prayer and meditation and the practice of the presence of God here and now." After its foundation in 1888, by 1918 there were Divine Science churches in Denver, Los Angeles, Boston, Spokane, Saint Louis and New York.
By 1925 churches had opened in Los Angeles, San Diego, Topeka, Washington D. C. Cleveland and Iowa. Today, Divine Science has churches in Denver, Washington D. C. Greater St. Louis, Virginia, San Antonio, Pueblo, San Jose and other locations. According to published data, there were 7,000 members in 1935 and 7,107 in 1953, but subsequent figures are not available. In recent years, Divine Science, with few site-based churches, has expanded its presence through cyber-ministries and e-mail ministries. Northwoods Resources in Wisconsin provides many materials online. In addition, "Symphony of Love" in Santa Fe issues a weekly e-mail lesson free of charge, has an international outreach. Symphony of Love is a group member of the Divine Science Federation, the denominational headquarters, the INTA: International New Thought Alliance. In addition, there is a Web-based ministry in New York State focusing on the teachings and legacy of Emmet Fox, a Divine Science minister who preached at the First Church of Divine Science in New York City.
His became the largest church audience in the U. S. during the Depression, held weekly services for 5,500 at the New York Hippodrome until 1938, after that at Carnegie Hall. Many New Thought leaders have been associated with Divine Science, including Charles Fillmore and Myrtle Fillmore founders of Unity Church, Ernest Holmes and Fenwicke Holmes, both of whom were ordained Divine Science ministers who would go on to found Religious Science; the much younger Christian Church International and its Arnulf Seminary of Theology are deeply influenced by the New Thought movement, its theology is much similar to the one of the Church of Divine Science. International Divine Science Association Bainbridge, William Sims. "Religion and science". Futures. 36: 1009–1023. Doi:10.1016/j.futures.2004.02.003. ISSN 0016-3287. OCLC 198488307. Hanegraaff, Wouter. New Age Religion and Western Culture: Esotericism in the Mirror of Secular Thought. Studies in the history of religions, vol. 72. Leiden, Netherlands: Brill Publishers.
ISBN 978-90-04-10696-3. OCLC 35229227. Holmes, Ernest. Living the Science of Mind. Marina del Rey, CA: DeVorss & Co. ISBN 978-0-87516-627-8. OCLC 23177601. Lucas, Phillip. "The Association for Research and Enlightenment: Saved by the New Age". In Timothy Miller. America's Alternative Re
Natural and legal rights
Natural and legal rights are two types of rights. Natural rights are those that are not dependent on the laws or customs of any particular culture or government, so are universal and inalienable Legal rights are those bestowed onto a person by a given legal system; the concept of natural law is related to the concept of natural rights. Natural law first appeared in ancient Greek philosophy, was referred to by Roman philosopher Cicero, it was subsequently alluded to in the Bible, developed in the Middle Ages by Catholic philosophers such as Albert the Great and his pupil Thomas Aquinas. During the Age of Enlightenment, the concept of natural laws was used to challenge the divine right of kings, became an alternative justification for the establishment of a social contract, positive law, government – and thus legal rights – in the form of classical republicanism. Conversely, the concept of natural rights is used by others to challenge the legitimacy of all such establishments; the idea of human rights is closely related to that of natural rights: some acknowledge no difference between the two, regarding them as synonymous, while others choose to keep the terms separate to eliminate association with some features traditionally associated with natural rights.
Natural rights, in particular, are considered beyond the authority of any government or international body to dismiss. The 1948 United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights is an important legal instrument enshrining one conception of natural rights into international soft law. Natural rights were traditionally viewed as negative rights, whereas human rights comprise positive rights. On a natural rights conception of human rights, the two terms may not be synonymous; the proposition that animals have natural rights is one that gained the interest of philosophers and legal scholars in the 20th century and into the 21st. The idea that certain rights are natural or inalienable has a history dating back at least to the Stoics of late Antiquity and Catholic law of the early Middle Ages, descending through the Protestant Reformation and the Age of Enlightenment to today; the existence of natural rights has been asserted by different individuals on different premises, such as a priori philosophical reasoning or religious principles.
For example, Immanuel Kant claimed to derive natural rights through reason alone. The United States Declaration of Independence, meanwhile, is based upon the "self-evident" truth that "all men are … endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights". Different philosophers and statesmen have designed different lists of what they believe to be natural rights. H. L. A. Hart argued that if there are any rights at all, there must be the right to liberty, for all the others would depend upon this. T. H. Green argued that “if there are such things as rights at all there must be a right to life and liberty, or, to put it more properly to free life.” John Locke emphasized "life and property" as primary. However, despite Locke's influential defense of the right of revolution, Thomas Jefferson substituted "pursuit of happiness" in place of "property" in the United States Declaration of Independence. Stephen Kinzer, a veteran journalist for The New York Times and the author of the book All The Shah's Men, writes in the latter that: The Zoroastrian religion taught Iranians that citizens have an inalienable right to enlightened leadership and that the duty of subjects is not to obey wise kings but to rise up against those who are wicked.
Leaders are seen as representative of God on earth, but they deserve allegiance only as long as they have farr, a kind of divine blessing that they must earn by moral behavior. The Stoics held. Seneca the Younger wrote: It is a mistake to imagine that slavery pervades a man's whole being. Of fundamental importance to the development of the idea of natural rights was the emergence of the idea of natural human equality; as the historian A. J. Carlyle notes: "There is no change in political theory so startling in its completeness as the change from the theory of Aristotle to the philosophical view represented by Cicero and Seneca.... We think that this cannot be better exemplified than with regard to the theory of the equality of human nature." Charles H. McIlwain observes that "the idea of the equality of men is the profoundest contribution of the Stoics to political thought" and that "its greatest influence is in the changed conception of law that in part resulted from it." Cicero argues in De Legibus that "we are born for Justice, that right is based, not upon opinions, but upon Nature."
One of the first Western thinkers to develop the contemporary idea of natural rights was French theologian Jean Gerson, whose 1402 treatise De Vita Spirituali Animae is considered one of the first attempts to develop what would come to be called modern natural rights theory. Centuries the Stoic doctrine that the "inner part cannot be delivered into bondage" re-emerged in the Reformation doctrine of liberty of conscience. Martin Luther wrote: Furthermore, every man is responsible for his own faith, he must see it for hi