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Morals and Ethics

By | March 2002
Page 1 of 3
Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, and Nietzsche all had their own ideas for which one could reach happiness in his/her life. All have similarities in there reasoning except Nietzshe, who contradicts the others entirely. Plato states that to understand virtue is happiness. In turn virtue suffices for happiness and is necessary. Also he intuits that human reasoning prevails over spirited element or a person?s appetite. Aristotle?s arguments relate with Plato, but he builds more to it and finds his own answers. He agrees that all people desire happiness and virtue is necessary for happiness. In same mind with Plato, Aristotle says happiness comes from perfecting our minds and characters. Unlike Plato, Aristotle questions and concludes that virtue does not suffice happiness. His definition of happiness is the activity of the soul in accordance with the most perfect virtue. He believes one must be active and make full use of his/her rational capacities to function well. This perfecting of ones character was Aristotle?s key to happiness. Augustine shares with that of Plato and Aristotle that virtue is necessary, but he disagrees that is all of what is needed. He denies that the perfection of one?s character suffices for virtue or happiness. His revelation is that the chief good is happiness. Being the highest good, it cannot be attained in one?s physical life. Brought forth is the balance of the natural realm and the supernatural realm. This consists of the Cardinal Virtues and the Faith Virtues. This means to follow and to love God. To Augustine, achieving salvation is the highest good, therefore happiness. Nietzshe shares nothing in common with the other three philosophers. He states that perfection doesn?t come from being morally good nor through religion; rather from self-mastery and free exercise of ones creative powers. His virtues(Master Morality) consist of pride, self-assertion, power, cruelty, honor, rank, and nobility. The Faith Values of...

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