Aristotle's Ethics

High School ・Political Science ・MLA

In book four: Aristotle's discussion on the code of moral absolutes

 In book four, Aristotle seems to dwell on the code of moral absolutes. He concentrates on describing what it means for an individual to excel in virtue. Unlike Kant, Aristotle’s ethical system is perceived to be casuistry. Aristotle’s discussion is mostly based on situational ethics in which the right choice depends on various circumstances. The casuistry ethics is teleological in nature. In other words, the virtue for human beings functions to fulfill the primary purpose of human life. Aristotle’s discussion entails virtues that act as guiding principles that guide individuals in determining their behaviors and conducts.  Aristotle confirms that virtue is not a matter of acting as per the set rules but rather the habit of acting in view of what is right.

In book eight: Aristotle's classification of friendship

 In book eight, Aristotle focuses mainly on the nature as well as the purpose of friendship. Aristotle manages to classify friendship into three major categories based on relationship. The first category of friendship is based on usefulness. In discussing this category, Aristotle seems to be focusing on business or commercial relationship. This kind of friendship is least durable. The second category of friendship is based on pleasure. This type of friendship tends to vary in degrees of nobility as well as stability depending on the character of the individuals involved. The last category of friendship is based on virtue. This is the most preferable type of friendship. In this case, every individual work towards the good and benefit of the other person.

In book nine: Aristotle's emphasis on the importance of having friends

 In book nine, Aristotle emphasizes the importance of having friends. The discussion regarding friendship shows the value of friends in one's life. It is clear that a person is incomplete despite having fame, virtue, and wealth without having people they call friends. According to Aristotle, friendship is a necessary factor for a good and healthy life. Friendship is merely not a superficial exchange of gifts, but rather something deep and unique that requires commitment, responsibility, and honesty. Aristotle emphasizes on true friendship, which requires one to do things that do not put the other person in danger. True friendship is mostly based on virtues such as honesty, trust, loyalty as well as respect.

In book ten: Aristotle's determination of the ultimate good for humankind

 Aristotle uses the ideas in book ten to complete the logic in the entire book. He focuses on determining the ultimate good for humankind by evaluating individual's highest capacities. According to Aristotle, the happiness of a man depends on the individual's purpose in life. If a person finds pleasure in what they are doing, they would automatically lead a happy life. In that case, human beings' function and purpose must be in alignment with the practical life of the rational part of man. Therefore, Aristotle confirms that happiness of any individual depends on the action of the rational part of human being. The ultimate good of a person should be exhibited in the performance of one's duties and responsibilities. An individual must consistently do good to lead a happy life. Additionally, it is necessarily important for one to have external prosperity like wealth, children, food, shelter as well as the freedom to live a happy life completely. It is also important to note that individuals continuously face challenges but must always remain focus and apply the life virtues that assist in making sound decisions.

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