Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Hobbes on Politics and Religion$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Laurens van Apeldoorn and Robin Douglass

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198803409

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198803409.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 15 December 2018

Tolerance as a Dimension of Hobbes’s Absolutism

Tolerance as a Dimension of Hobbes’s Absolutism

Chapter:
(p.63) 4 Tolerance as a Dimension of Hobbes’s Absolutism
Source:
Hobbes on Politics and Religion
Author(s):

Franck Lessay

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198803409.003.0005

The sovereign’s unlimited power, including in religious matters, was a logical consequence of Hobbes’s politics. Yet this chapter argues that by making civil peace the criterion by which public doctrines must be appraised, instead of intrinsic truth or the citizens’ salvation, Hobbes restricted the sovereign’s mission in the field of religion to a secular preoccupation, thus legitimizing a policy of non-interference with theological debates. Besides, Hobbes’s ecclesiology tended to transform the church into a mere function of the state, while a comprehensive structure like the Church of England appeared to Hobbes as the best adapted for allowing maximum individual autonomy in terms of belief. By a striking paradox, this chapter concludes, it was as ‘supreme pastor’ that the sovereign could assume full independence from religious concerns and implement a policy of religious toleration oriented towards peace between contending faiths.

Keywords:   belief, church, conscience, peace, salvation, sovereignty, Thomas Hobbes, toleration

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .