Natural law

If we look at the word natural right, we see clearly that it is formed by two different words. The word right comes from the Latin "directum" and could be translated as the things "that are in accordance with the law" and it is also everything that allows us to develop different justice statements that constitute institutions organizations and norms that regulate a society. The second term that makes up the word is natural, and as its name indicates, it is related to everything that is linked to nature. The term natural actually has many different meanings and could perfectly refer to such things as the essence of a being, to the set of physical phenomena or the set of elements that we can find within the earthly world or, to the quality of something, among other things. Then, we can say that natural law is the set of norms and rules that men establish on behalf of our consciousness.

What is natural law?

Natural law is the set of rules, norms and situations that human beings deduce or establish from their own consciousness and are those that are determined as a type of justice at a given moment in history, changing depending on the life stage in which a society is living.

Characteristics of the natural law

Natural rights are inalienable and universal because no person can deprive another of the enjoyment of them and at the same time, nobody can make the decision to set them aside and not put them into practice.

Natural law history

Natural right has been seen as an indispensable issue in Western thought and was more popularly known as natural law. Facts can be observed dating back to mythology and philosophy of thought in Ancient Greece. Men like Homer and Hesiod, Plato and Aristotle used and believed in natural law. During Middle Age, there were two different periods of law, the patristic, which was the doctrine of the church, and the scholastic, which was taught by St. Thomas Aquinas, who also supported natural law. Ancient men, even went so far as to declare that natural law could exist even if God did not. During the seventeenth century, rationalism was brought to an end with the creation of the Kant Rational Law School. Basically, natural law has its origin in the ancient Roman Empire when jurists began to assert the existence of a superior being. Cicero was in charge of perfecting the concept and established it as a higher order of immutable origin that sought to make men act correctly through his commandments, keeping them away from evil.


The basic principles of natural law are two and are based on the human being’s nature and on the set of realities in which adequate social coexistence develops. One of the main principles of natural law is human life right that arises from the moment of conception until the process of natural death arrives. Life is not a property that belongs to state but is a gift that comes from God. Another important principle is the duty to always seek the truth, which is considered as the foundation of people’s maturation and must be through it, seek the truth at all times avoiding the ideological manipulation that comes from the mass media. Freedom is an important principle, which cannot be said to be absolute because it has some limits. Justice, manifested in the way in which we give to each one what corresponds to him and the solidarity that we must have with the people who need it most.

Natural law classification

Natural law is classified into two types of rights. The natural ontological law is catalogued as the science that studies the human being; and the natural deontological law, which is the science that is based on the study of the being but based on an inculcated system of values.


Written by Gabriela Briceño V.

How to cite this article?

Briceño V., Gabriela. (2019). Natural law. Recovered on 24 February, 2024, de Euston96:

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