nicomachean ethics

nicomachean ethics - Aristotle Nicomachean Ethics Book 2...

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Aristotle: Nicomachean Ethics Book 2 – focuses on how you acquire virtue – “not simply to know virtue, but to be good.” o Ethics is not a theoretical study, it is a practical study. o Chapter 1 Virtue – both intellectual and moral Intellectual o Makes use of the theoretical part of the soul Moral o Uses the calculative and the appetitive part of the soul o Formed by habit o We are by nature equipped with the ability to receive them, and habit brings this ability to completion and fulfillment. They aren’t like senses (we are born with them) But its not against our nature to acquire these moral virtues and to be good We are born morally neutral Virtues o Moral Virtues courage, temperance (moderation), liberality (moderation in giving and taking money), magnificence (correctly dealing with great wealth or power), pride (claiming what is due to you), gentleness (moderation with respect to anger), agreeableness, truthfulness, and wit. Parts of the soul Theoretical – Rational (unchanging and necessary) o Directly involved with reason Calculative – Rational (change and variation) o Use this part of the soul to figure out how you ought to behave in an unfamiliar situation. o Directly involved in reason. Appetites – Non-Rational o Desires for eating, drinking, sex o Can listen to reason or not Vegetative – Non-Rational o Involuntary functions of the body Learn by doing things
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We become just by performing just actions, becom e courageous by practicing courage, and become temperate by practicing temperate actions. Just like a builder learns to build by building. Practicing these actions incorrectly, however, can lead to vice Once you have a good habit developed in you, it is easier to be virtuous o Chapter 2 o Chapter 4 “Virtuous action and virtue” If you practice just actions, aren’t you already just? Not just performed in a certain kind – need something more to be just The agent has certain characteristics as he performs the act o Must know what he is doing o Must choose to act the way he does and choose it for its own sake o Act must spring from a firm and unchangeable character Act must be appropriate to the circumstance o Chapter 6 Mean and median are absolute in some circumstances (like with arithmetic – objective) and sometimes is relative (like in terms of eating a certain amount – subjective). Virtue involves choice, and involves the mean relative to us Some vices will be associated with both excess and deficiency in moods and actions A virtue is a mean between a vice of excess and a vice of deficiency o Generosity is the mean between wastefulness and stinginess Not every action nor every emotion admits of a mean Things are already extremes – adultery, murder, theft There is no right way to do these things (its always wrong) Book 3 o Chapter 3 Deliberation – not about the end, but it’s about the means to
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This note was uploaded on 04/23/2009 for the course PL/TH PL090/TH09 taught by Professor Dechiara during the Fall '07 term at BC.

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nicomachean ethics - Aristotle Nicomachean Ethics Book 2...

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