Aristotle argued that the goal of human beings is happiness, and that we achieve happiness when we fulfill our function. Therefore, it is necessary to determine what our function is. The function of a thing, or its telos, is what it alone can do, or what it can do best. Like the function of the eye is to see, Aristotle declared the human being as the "rational animal" whose function is to reason. Thus, according to Aristotle, a happy life for human beings is a life governed by reason.
Aristotle believed that a person who has difficulty behaving ethically is morally imperfect. His ideal person practices the "golden mean of moderation." He believed that this moral virtue, of which happiness comes from, is a matter of avoiding extremes in behavior and finding the mean between them. Aristotle conceives happiness not primarily as an exercise of virtue in private or with friends, but as... [continues]
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