aristotle philo essay - Sarah Benton Intro to Philo(F Prof...

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Sarah Benton Intro to Philo. (F) Prof. Ostaric 10/9/2009 Paper 1 2. Aristotle writes that “it is hard work to be excellent. For in each case it is hard work to find the intermediate; for instance, not everyone, but only one who knows , finds the midpoint in a circle. So also getting angry, or giving and spending money, is easy and everyone can do it; but giving it to the right person, in the right amount, at the right time, for the right end, and in the right way is no longer easy, nor can everyone do it. Hence, doing these things well is rare, praiseworthy, and fine” (1109a25-30) [my emphasis, L.O.] (1) Explain how virtue for Aristotle is a mean between two extremes and how achieving virtuous character somehow presupposes virtues of thought. (2) Illustrate your explanation via two Aristotelian virtues. (The choice of the virtues is entirely up to you). (3) Do you agree or disagree with Aristotle? Give reasons for your position. In his philosophic work, Nicomachean Ethics , the philosopher Aristotle’s views on virtue and the virtuous character of a human being are explained through examples, such as virtues of character or thought. This philosopher, a student of Plato, challenged his teacher and the previously established ideas of philosophy, and proposed his own thoughts on what he called the greatest of goods, happiness. Most of his works were comprised of ideas and thoughts on how to obtain true happiness in life. One of his ideas to lead to happiness was to lead a virtuous life. According to the philosopher, in rational adult thinkers (excluding children and animals), virtue presupposes decision and deliberation, and must be wished. Aristotle describes the idea of virtue as a “mean” between the two extremes of excess and deficiency. This means that each specific virtue he outlines, both of character and of thought, has its own extremes, helping the reader discern how to live a virtuous life. Some of the different virtues the philosopher describes include the character virtues of bravery, temperance, generosity, magnificence and magnanimity. This essay will mainly focus on the major differences between several of these character virtues, along with the greater difference between the classifications of
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aristotle philo essay - Sarah Benton Intro to Philo(F Prof...

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