Cooper 1999 chs 14, 15 ; Hitz 2011; Kahn 1981; Milgram 1987; Nehamas 2010; Pakaluk 1998; Pangle 2003; Price 1989 chs 4—7 ; Rogers 1994; Schollmeier 1994; Sherman 1987; Stern-Gillet 1995; Walker 2014; Whiting 1991. At the same time, Aristotle makes it clear that in order to be happy one must possess others goods as well—such goods as friends, wealth, and power. He believed that virtue lies in the attainment of happiness or goodness. Consider someone who loves to wrestle, for example. One of Plato's central points is that it is a great advantage to establish a hierarchical ordering of the elements in one's soul; and he shows how the traditional virtues can be interpreted to foster or express the proper relation between reason and less rational elements of the psyche. There has to be a deep concern for the ethical and political.
Play, physical training, music, debate, and the study of science and philosophy were to all have their place in the forming of body, mind and soul. The pleasure of recovering from an illness, for example, is bad without qualification—meaning that it is not one of the pleasures one would ideally choose, if one could completely control one's circumstances. These are precisely the questions that were asked in antiquity by the Stoics, and they came to the conclusion that such common emotions as anger and fear are always inappropriate. His intention in Book I of the Ethics is to indicate in a general way why the virtues are important; why particular virtues—courage, justice, and the like—are components of happiness is something we should be able to better understand only at a later point. At first, Aristotle leaves open the first of these two possibilities. However, there can be no doubting his significance. He says, not that happiness is virtue, but that it is virtuous activity.
The soul is analyzed into a connected series of capacities: the nutritive soul is responsible for growth and reproduction, the locomotive soul for motion, the perceptive soul for perception, and so on. A craft product, when well designed and produced by a good craftsman, is not merely useful, but also has such elements as balance, proportion and harmony—for these are properties that help make it useful. The young person learning to acquire the virtues must develop a love of doing what is kalon and a strong aversion to its opposite—the aischron, the shameful and ugly. His point is simply that although some pleasures may be good, they are not worth choosing when they interfere with other activities that are far better. How about some quotes that depict the real ethnocentric, misogynist and despotic Aristotle, the mediocre philosopher who taught Alexander to murder Barbarians because they needed to be slaves.
Accordingly, it would not serve Aristotle's purpose to consider virtuous activity in isolation from all other goods. Human Nature and Society Aristotle discusses human nature and society in works like Nicomachean Ethics and Politics. In raising this question—what is the good? Hence it is a goal and not a temporary state. No citizen, he says, belongs to himself; all belong to the city 1337a28—9. Human happiness does not consist in every kind of pleasure, but it does consist in one kind of pleasure—the pleasure felt by a human being who engages in theoretical activity and thereby imitates the pleasurable thinking of god.
Since man is a rational animal, human happiness depends on the exercise of his reason. What Aristotle owes us, then, is an account of these traditional qualities that explains why they must play a central role in any well-lived life. To be adequately equipped to live a life of thought and discussion, one will need practical wisdom, temperance, justice, and the other ethical virtues. There is no reason to attribute this extreme form of egoism to Aristotle. Aristotle does not deny that when we take pleasure in an activity we get better at it, but when he says that pleasure completes an activity by supervening on it, like the bloom that accompanies those who have achieved the highest point of physical beauty, his point is that the activity complemented by pleasure is already perfect, and the pleasure that accompanies it is a bonus that serves no further purpose. Aristotle implies that all other political activities have the same feature, although perhaps to a smaller degree.
A classic overview by one of Aristotle's most prominent English translators, in print since 1923. The rest of this Book is a discussion of the various kinds of intellectual virtues: theoretical wisdom, science epistêmê , intuitive understanding nous , practical wisdom, and craft expertise. Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics 2004 , ed. The pleasure of drawing, for example, requires both the development of drawing ability and an object of attention that is worth drawing. Since activities differ with respect to goodness and badness, some being worth choosing, others worth avoiding, and others neither, the same is true of pleasures as well. Aristotle conceives of ethical theory as a field distinct from the theoretical sciences.
Friendship is a single soul dwelling in two bodies. But what is not inevitable is that our early experience will be rich enough to provide an adequate basis for worthwhile ethical reflection; that is why we need to have been brought up well. The Purpose of Ethics Aristotle is known for his study of politics and government as well as his ideas on ethics. First, there is the thesis that every virtue is a state that lies between two vices, one of excess and the other of deficiency. Three Lives Compared In Book I Aristotle says that three kinds of lives are thought to be especially attractive: one is devoted to pleasure, a second to politics, and a third to knowledge and understanding 1095b17—19.
The purpose of the state is to educate the people -- to make them virtuous. Basically, he says, the idea of virtue is ''all things in moderation. The goodness of a being depended upon the extent to which that being achieved its highest potential. I write a lot about happiness and am very intrigued by Aristotle and his teachings. Ethical virtue is fully developed only when it is combined with practical wisdom 1144b14—17. For he thinks that this kind of friendship can exist only when one spends a great deal of time with the other person, participating in joint activities and engaging in mutually beneficial behavior; and one cannot cooperate on these close terms with every member of the political community.
Preliminaries Aristotle wrote two ethical treatises: the Nicomachean Ethics and the Eudemian Ethics. Addressing the moral skeptic, after all, is the project Plato undertook in the Republic: in Book I he rehearses an argument to show that justice is not really a virtue, and the remainder of this work is an attempt to rebut this thesis. Courage, for example, is a mean regarding the feeling of fear, between the deficiency of rashness too little fear and the excess of cowardice too much fear. Were someone to combine both careers, practicing politics at certain times and engaged in philosophical discussion at other times as Plato's philosopher-kings do , he would lead a life better than that of Aristotle's politician, but worse than that of Aristotle's philosopher. The cause of this deficiency lies not in some impairment in their capacity to reason—for we are assuming that they are normal in this respect—but in the training of their passions.