Genghis Khan - Sustaining Existence
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Genghis Khan has fascinated scholars for centuries, and the Mongol empire he initiated had a profound effect on Asia and Europe. His conquests were unique in history, but his motivations were common to all men. The Secret History of the Mongols offers universal insights by viewing through the lens of philosophical anthropology – an approach both existential and historical asking the question, “What is man?” My initial approach was to ask, “what would Thomas Hobbes think of Genghis Khan, and would that author of Leviathan revise his ideas?” My conclusion is that he would have to alter some ideas, not because they were erroneous, but rather because they were incomplete. The simple question of this endeavor is, “How was Genghis Khan able to survive to old age despite multiple life threats described in the Secret History?” An answer is found in exploring the concept of security, which I define as prolonging life, postponing death. A narrative is provided by the Secret History, but application of the philosophical anthropology approach suggests elements of life protection to form a framework of analysis – a framework which I offer as Anthrocentric Security Theory. The Theory postulates that humans, desiring to live as long as possible, progress through three to four Strata-of-Being, developing increasingly complex platforms for improving life security, culminating in States and civil societies. The biography of Genghis Khan illustrates how one man secured his life at three levels of Being.
- Robert Bedeski