Natural law

The development of natural law is attributed to the Stoics. This is a bust of Zeno of Citium, a stoic

Natural law is the idea that there are forms of law that exist by themselves. Unlike other forms of law (called positive laws) that have been agreed on by society, such laws would be given to all, and would not be possible to do without. Such rights are called natural. In modern times, human rights are often seen as coming from natural law, but the idea goes back to Ancient Greece.

Natural law is often founded on the following:

  • God, who created natural law with creating the world
  • Logos, an idea from philosophy; this is interpreted to be divine law
  • Part of natural law inside human beings (called Self-knowledge, sometimes conscience)
  • Certain laws that can be deduced from the natural sciences
  • Nature itself
  • Reason

Important philosophers who developed natural law include Aristotle, Plato, Seneca the Younger, Thomas Aquinas, and Immanuel Kant. People who criticized this approach include Jeremy Bentham and Hans Kelsen.

  • related pages

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Other Languages
Alemannisch: Naturrecht
العربية: حق طبيعي
asturianu: Derechu natural
català: Dret natural
dansk: Naturret
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Ελληνικά: Φυσικό Δίκαιο
English: Natural law
español: Derecho natural
Esperanto: Jurnaturalismo
français: Droit naturel
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한국어: 자연법
Bahasa Indonesia: Hukum kodrat
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íslenska: Náttúruréttur
italiano: Giusnaturalismo
עברית: משפט הטבע
қазақша: Табиғи құқық
Latina: Ius naturale
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日本語: 自然法
norsk: Naturrett
norsk nynorsk: Naturrett
polski: Prawo natury
português: Direito natural
română: Drept natural
slovenčina: Prirodzené právo
slovenščina: Naravno pravo
српски / srpski: Prirodno pravo
svenska: Naturrätt
Türkçe: Doğal hukuk
українська: Природне право
Tiếng Việt: Luật tự nhiên
中文: 自然法