Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

Search:

Or browse the dictionary by selecting a letter!
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

STATE OF NATURE

The mythical condition of human beings before they were affected by civilization. This condition was idealized by many philosophers, e.g., Jean Jacques Rousseau, as a norm of what the human situation would be except for the corrupting influence of human education and society. It was used by some (e.g., John Locke) as an argument for humanity's original rights to liberty and equality, and by others (e.g., Thomas Hobbes) as proof for the need of a state to control the social instincts of human beings.

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Famous actors bring the New Testament to dramatic life in this audio Bible 4 hours ago
Preparing for the Jubilee of Mercy 6 hours ago
Final Liturgical Year volume for 2014-2015 now available August 31
Church Fathers: The Third Century and the School of Alexandria August 29
Every Aspect of the Catholic Thing August 28

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: welcome with compassion those who have remarried outside the Church CWN - August 5
Pope Francis: SSPX priests will licitly and validly absolve sins during Jubilee of Mercy CWN - 17 hours ago