Aristotle and the Good Life

Topics: Meaning of life, Ethics, Nicomachean Ethics Pages: 2 (669 words) Published: August 4, 2008
According to Aristotle the good life is the happy life, as happiness is an end in itself. He also believes that all actions aim at the good and that the good is happiness. I believe ‘some’ of Aristotle’s views on the good life are correct but I believe sometimes we can sacrifice our own happiness for someone else’s happiness and the people that don’t have the power to reason do have souls and they are still as human as everybody else. In order to make my point I will first have to explain Aristotle’s claims of what a good life is and then I will give my opinion.

Aristotle believes the happy life is the good life for the reason that he thinks happiness is the only thing we value for its own sake, and happiness is not a means to any other things as it is an end in it self. Aristotle invites the fact that if we have happiness, we don’t need any other things making it an intrinsic value. In contrast things such as money or power are extrinsic valuables as they are all means to an end, for example money to buy something you want. I believe this view on the good life is plausible because if somebody is happy all the time, they would not be worried about anything and they would be living a good life.

Aristotle rejects other dominant views of what happiness is. He says happiness is not a life of pleasure, power, material wealth (being rich) or honour. He believes these things are not valued for their own sake. They are all means to attaining something else. I believe the rejection of these other views of what happiness are correct also, for example, Honour is also dependent on other people bestowing it on you whereas happiness should be something you can get your self.

Aristotle believes Happiness is a life devoted to performing our human function excellently or in accordance with virtue, the word virtue meaning the excellence of something. Aristotle describes his views by stating that everything has a specific function that only it can do, and that the...
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