2/01/2019

Disadvantages of a person in a high position: According to Bacon.


The essay of Great Place' contains miscellaneous
reflections on the means and methods of attaining great place and its
nature and expectations. A very large part of it deals with the
disadvantages and pitfalls of the position of high authority. Francis
Bacon shades a very practical and rational light on them.
Bacon opens the essay Of Great Place with the focal
disadvantages of men in high position. They are servants of three
things. They are servants of the sovereign or state, of fame and of
their post. They have to obey and carry out the order of the state or government to satisfy the highest authority in the country. They must
serve to maintain their fame and safeguard any adverse criticism or
infamy by others. They have to retain their high position at the cost
of their own freedom. They cannot but contribute most of their time
in service of their post and cannot, therefore, have free time for their
private lives. There is a paradox involved in achieving a great place.
Men in high post exercises power and authority over others but they
do not have power over themselves. Thus they lose their personal
liberty.


According to Bacon high places can be secured by hard work and
constant effort but it may sometimes involve mean practices which
are inconvenience for the men of honour. The man comes to the post
of honour and prestige after suffering plenty of insults and
humiliations. After achieving this position he is involved in more
hard work because the office imposes a heavy responsibility and
demands constant work. The idea of sacrificing dignity for the sake of
attaining high place is Machiavellian in nature. The expression An
rising to great place is by a winding stair refers to crooked methods
or roundabout ways of attaining great place. Since it needs to employ
cunning and duplicity to achieve a high position, it throws a lurid
dness of Elizabethan statesmanship when
corruption and intrigue prevailed everywhere.

Attaining high place does not bring respite to the aspirant. He
risks downfall due to the displeasure of the supreme authority or for
falling out of favour: The standing is slippery'. The loss of power and
influence, which is the ultimate drawback of attaining high post, may
be either permanent or temporary, but in both the cases it would
cause great suffering and misery to the person concerned. Besides,
another disadvantage is that a man is reluctant to give up his high
office even when he becomes old and sick. To cling to high office
when it is right and proper to retire is to invite the scorn of others.


The most important disadvantage of the persons in high place is
that they are not really happy because they have too many cares and
worries. But for their power and influence, others think that they must
be quite happy. They live on the opinions of others. They must accept
the opinions of others to be happy. On the other hand, they are too
hand with their duties that they can spare no time to think of their
physical or spiritual well being. They remain stranger to themselves.


The essay 'Of Great Place, therefore, catalogues a long list of
disadvantages of high place. The only advantage which high posts
have is that they give men power to do good deeds. By doing good
alone can a man get an easy conscience and a peaceful soul.

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