Home >> Sociology of Law >> Greek Philosophy

greek philosophy

  • The natural law philosophy dominated in Greece during 5th B.C. This theory suggests that societies must constantly evolve with the social structures.
  • Their writings acted as a catalyst for bringing about transformation of the old prevailing legal system.
  • Mooted for universal order governing all men and the inalienable rights of the individuals.
  • Law is construed as higher moral law order, righteousness and salvation
  • The philosophy of morality, justice, ethics, right reason, good conduct, equality, liberty, freedom, social justice, democracy has its derivation from here
  • Natural law also developed through Stoic Rome philosophy of Cicero that dealt with personal ethics

Theological Influence of Natural Law

  • St Augustine- 4th century AD - His writings state that government became a necessary tool to restrain men from doing evil through the fear of punishment.
  • St. Thomas Aquinas wrote and his 13th Century AD writings

Focused on Dominance of church and these writings were moulded to the Church's needs. To him there are only 4 laws - Divine Law, eternal law, law of nature and Human Law.

obligation to conscience

harmonisation of God's enactments with human deeds

God dictates and humans follow

if not, sin.