The Orient In ancient India, the antecedents of politics can be traced back to the Rig-Veda, Samhitas, Brahmanas, the Mahabharata and Buddhist Pali Canon . Chanakya (c. 350-275 BC) was a political thinker in Takshashila. Chanakya wrote the Arthashastra, a treatise on political thought, economics and social order, which can be considered a precursor to Machiavelli's The Prince. It discusses monetary and fiscal policies, welfare, international relations, and war strategies in detail, among other topics. The Manusmriti, dated to about two centuries after the time of Chanakya is another important political treatise of ancient India. Ancient China was home to several competing schools of political thought, most of which arose in the Spring and Autumn Period. These included Mohism (a utilitarian philosophy),Taoism, Legalism (a school of though based on the supremacy of the state), and Confucianism, which became the dominant political philosophy in China during the Imperial Period. Confucian political ideas also deeply influenced and were expounded upon by scholars in Korea and Japan. In Persia, works such as the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam and Epic of Kings by Ferdowsi provided evidence of political analysis, while the Middle Eastern Aristotelians such as Avicennaand later Maimonides and Averroes, continued Aristotle's tradition of analysis and empiricism, writing commentaries on Aristotle's works. Averroe did not have at hand a text of Aristotle'sPolitics, so he wrote a commentary on Plato's Republic instead. The Renaissance During the Italian Renaissance, Machiavelli established the emphasis of modern political science on direct empirical observation of political institutions and actors. For Machiavelli, nothing seems to be too good nor too evil if it helps to attain and preserve political power. Machiavelli shatters political illusions, reveals the harsh reality of politics and could be considered the father of the politics model. Later, the expansion of the scientific paradigm during the Enlightenment further pushed the study of politics beyond normative determinations. Like Machiavelli, Thomas Hobbes, well-known for his theory of the social contract, believed that a strong central power, such as a monarchy, was necessary to rule the innate selfishness of the individual but neither of them believed in the divine right of kings. John Locke, on the other hand, who gave us Two Treatises of Government and who did not believe in the divine right of kings either, sided with Aquinas and stood against both Machiavelli and Hobbes by accepting Aristotle's dictum that man seeks to be happy in a state of social harmony as a social animal. Unlike Aquinas' preponderant view on the salvation of the soul from original sin, Locke believed man comes into this world with a mind that is basically tabula rasa. According to Locke, an absolute ruler as proposed by Hobbes is unnecessary, for natural law is based on reason and equality, seeking peace and survival for man. The Enlightenment Religion would no longer play a dominant role in politics. There would be separation of church and state. Principles similar to those that dominated the material sciences could be applied to society as a whole, originating the social sciences. Politics could be studied in a laboratory as it were, the social milieu. In 1787, Alexander Hamilton wrote: "...The science of politics like most other sciences has received great improvement." (The Federalist Papers Number 9 and 51). Both the marquis d'Argenson and the abb de Saint-Pierre described politics as a science; d'Argenson was a philosopher and de Saint-Pierre an allied reformer of the enlightenment. Other important figures in American politics who participated in the Enlightenment were Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson.