Political Philosophy of Niccolo Machiavelli

The History of Political Philosophy has shown a very tiring journey. Beginning in the Classical, Middle, Enlightenment, to Modern periods, of course, each period has its own character. In its realization it is true that political studies are not only completed in the area of ​​public issues, government structures or periodic election campaigns, but also include the aspirations, goals, beliefs and values ​​of Humans. He will always relate to theory, practice, philosophical skills, and technical.

It was Niccolo Machiavelli, an Enlightenment philosopher, thinker Florentin who was famous for his work and ideas. For more than 14 years, he was the Secretary of State, but did not last long. The reason is that political dynamics are not easily resolved and are increasingly burning. The impact resulted in political divisions within Italy in parts of Rome, Milan, Venice.

Machiavelli’s monumental works are The Prince and Discourse , as a result of his thinking. Through his works, it is undeniable that a Hitler was able to read The Prince , or Napoleon Bonaparte, who barely left his work to be used as his sleeping pillow. Even Benito Mussolini made Machiavelli’s work as a guide to his authority.

Therefore it is very necessary in political studies to expose the ideas of these Florentin country thinkers. In this case the author would like to invite to re-translate the Point of View from Machiavelli’s political philosophy, especially those that lie behind it and contribute its ideas to the world at large.

The Enlightenment was an age of progress marked by the discovery of an eastern compass, a printing press, gunpowder; Vasco Da Gama traveled the world and when Columbus discovered the American island. Whereas socially and culturally, the epiphany was marked by the spirit of secularism and left attention to ontology, metaphysics and ethics. 2

A completely new methodology was introduced by Machiavelli, which seeks to remove the ethical context from political realities and ignore ethical goals. He studied politics solely for the purpose of feasibility of the practices of power institutions. He does not care about morality and political actions, but leads to deviations from human goals. He prefers ways that can and should be studied scientifically without including good and bad as the goal. 3Thus it is very different from the earlier philosophers who were inclined to follow Plato’s speculative method which put forward the Ethical Purpose of Happiness. In addition, Machiavelli then criticized statesmen for how they should act, as proven approaches to achieving and maintaining power should be studied and analyzed carefully, these actions must then be used by the authorities.

For Machiavelli, psychologically humans are basically inclined to the evil in their minds. He will do when he has the chance. Humans are ungrateful, cunning liars, very avoiding danger, and are jealous of the results achieved by others. Therefore they are overwhelmed by power, lust and greed. So in a power, if the king wants to keep it, the legitimacy of his power must use two methods. First, through law; and secondis the animal’s way. Humans must use animal characters. Humans must study foxes and lions. The logical implication from Machiavelli’s view is clear, placing human actions on two characters in the same degree, namely placing the rational side of humans to serve animal principles in such a way that reason becomes an instrument solely for outward desires.

Often the Machiavelli concept that is known by many is the purpose of justifying all means (The End Justifies The Means). Indeed according to his view, the political idea to be achieved is happiness. However the State is obliged to give prosperity to its people. It is true that this Florentine thinker aspires for the good of the Italian people. Whatever the method in politics will be justified even though it does not heed the Morals. For him, a ruler is not obliged to discuss whether his actions are morally appropriate or whether there are ethical limits that may be violated. Everything is free from Moral burden. The king can mobilize all his energy for empirical decisions, so then the only limitation is that he must use it for the right purpose (general good as Machiavelli has defined it).

As for the contribution of Machiavelli’s thought in relations with the State as an organization of power. First , Power and the State should be separated from morality and God. Second , power as an objective is not an instrument to maintain the values ​​of morality and religion.

Third , good rulers are those who pursue glory and wealth because both are necessities possessed by the authorities. Fourth , power is the raison d’entre of the State, that is, the State as a symbol of the highest political power that is all-encompassing. Nevertheless Machiavelli made the State of power not the State of law.

Fifth , in maintaining power after being captured, Machiavelli provided two ways, namely destroying the old ruling family and colonizing, and establishing good relations with the nearest neighboring country (the way that had been done by the Roman nation). Sixth , with power obtained through cruel means, it should be accompanied by sympathetic actions (imaging) or affection for the people, so that the people give trust and dependence to him.

Seventh , in The Prince , that a ruler needs to learn commendable qualities. He must dare to do cruel, cruel, treasonous and cruel actions as long as it is for the good of the country and its power. Eighth , the authorities must use animal methods in dealing with their political opponents. A ruler can model the temperament of a lion who bluffs at one time and a fox temperament that cannot be trapped at another time. Machiavelli also advocated the ruler to become a Chiron , a creature and bodied horse in Greek mythology. Ninth, a ruler who has a clear attitude whether as an enemy or as a friend will be more valued than being neutral. 5

Thus the idea of ​​Niccollo Machiavelli’s political philosophy. His realistic analysis of The Prince provides a re-enlightenment about politics. To this day, it will be a longer story if it is able to annul what is really happening in the structure of the largest society (the State) to the smallest, society and family.

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