We all dream of the perfect state where all the wrongs embodied
in our countries would be no more? Thomas More in an unmatched deftness
conceives of the perfect state of utopia in some cases reflecting Plato’s
Republic blow by blow and tempered with Plutarch’s account of Spartan life
under Lycurgus as something to aspire to out of the dystopic and banana states
of recent times.
Utopia is crimeless.
The societies of the time imposed barbarous punishments on those imputed
to have committed crimes as a deterrent. Too great a punishment for so simple a
crime is counter-productive in achieving the desired effects on the public. In
the nations around Utopia the impoverished and disenfranchised public resorts
to stealing to put food on the table while in Utopia the diagnosis is
forestalled by egalitarianism in all spheres of life. Utopia sees to it that
everybody is applied to work eliminating such blemishes as the class of
noblemen and keeping to the barest minimum the magistrates, priests and princes.
In so doing the society eliminates a bloated government and proportion of
people who depend on others; the egalitarianism that forms the stuff of
The state doesn’t maintain a standing army that is otherwise
a yoke on taxpayers of any nation. The so called necessary evils of a state.
Both men and women are trained in the martial arts that when need so arises the
citizens might defend the interests of their nation with women who feel so
allowed to fight alongside their men. However the society is disposed to hire
mercenaries from other nation who fight on its behalf and greatly rewarded and
in so doing are bound to be killed in war by which the disgruntled elements of
human society are eliminated.
Gluttony and unchecked accumulation of wealth are checked by
the fact nobody is allowed to own property. Men seeing that they are never
short of the necessities of life do not see the need to accumulate. There is no
mode of payment of goods from merchants. One simply goes and picks what they
need from the merchants without paying and only in quantities they need for
their families. Those found guilty of theft make retribution to the owner and
not state or prince and punishment consists of working for the public without
or minimal pay.
Court poets and sycophants find no habitation in Utopia and
the Utopian prince doesn’t preoccupy himself with the conquering of additional
kingdoms as of administering justly the one at hand. It truly is a coming of
philosophers to the throne as espoused by Plato; laws are few, lawyers do not
exist since the citizenry is taught the common law, and the socio-demographics
are such that no particular city gets overpopulated. Town dwellers alternate
their abodes with the country dwellers regularly and family draw lots to decide
on the houses they’ll stay in. a unit of thirty families get to choose the
local magistrate who administers their day to day affairs. The magistrates in
turn get to chose by secret ballot the prince who can only be removed from
office when suspected of a plot to place the people under tyranny. The society
only allows marriage of males over twenty-two and women over eighteen years
old. A notable thing is that the bride and groom are to view each other nude
before committing to marriage in order to see if the other has blemish of any
sort since divorce is frowned upon.
Perhaps one of the greatest stumbling blocks to humankind
unity-religious differences-are set aside by law. Each man’s right to belong to
a unique religion is respected absolutely and as such the society is highly
cohesive. Class difference is unheard of. The very things that cultivate this
are eliminated. Gold and silver and all the precious stones are held invaluable
in this society; man’s basal avarice is thus crippled. The only pleasures the
utopian’s delight in are what they call the true pleasures of the mind and of
the body with those of the mind considered superior; these are chiefly fencing
the mind with enlightenment.
Critics might argue that Utopia embodies a mass produced
society and even some might argue that it contains communistic principles that
might not ride well with the capitalistic societies we have today. However the
commonwealth of utopia has some principles one would like to see applied in the
states we have today.