Preview

Analysis Of Aristotle's Beliefs On How To Live A Good Life

Good Essays
Open Document
Open Document
933 Words
Grammar
Grammar
Plagiarism
Plagiarism
Writing
Writing
Score
Score
Analysis Of Aristotle's Beliefs On How To Live A Good Life
Though Aristotle does not explicitly speak of meaning, he surely considered the reality of impartial values and meaning. While his primary concern was on the happiness gained by accounting for these values, he does not say that the happy life means the meaningful. However, we can infer that he thought that the good life and the meaningful life are equals. Therefore, Aristotle’s plan in order to live a good life is understandable, and is a guide to a meaningful life.
Aristotle’s beliefs on living a good life start with careful deliberation of the ends and the means. Suppose I want a laptop--the laptop is my goal, purpose, or end. I can do various things to get the laptop--such as earn, steal, borrow, or save. These things are known as my means. The means I decide to use depends on which is more convenient and which leads to the most benefits. Contemplating about the end goal that we are pursuing, and the means we use to reach that goal is practical thinking. However, this type of thinking does not come to fruition, until purposeful action occurs; which is acting with some purpose, goal, or end in mind. This purposeful action is compared differently with thoughtless action, which is an action with no purpose
…show more content…
This includes practicing good habits. Aristotle defines these good habits as virtues. There are intellectual virtues which pertain to the mind, and moral virtues based on the regular inclination to choose rightly. Aristotle values moral virtue specifically, because it plays an important part in living a good life. This is because if we make bad choices, it will not only cause us inconvenience, but the inability to live well. These choices of ours determine our ability to live well, and the development of good habits allows us to freely make decisions that can improve our

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Powerful Essays

    The Importance of Ethics

    • 3331 Words
    • 16 Pages

    Aristotle taught an ethical doctrine of the "golden mean," or of "moderation." He believed it was good to seek balance between too much and too little, and that the result would be moderation, the ethical ideal. Aristotle believed the following elements were required to live a whole human life characterized by maximum living.…

    • 3331 Words
    • 16 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Virtue ethics is a theory used to make moral decisions. It does not rely on religion, society or culture; it only depends on the individuals themselves. Aristotle is the main philosopher of Virtue Ethic. Aristotle’s writings have been read more or less continuously since ancient times, and his ethical treatises continue to influence philosophers working today.…

    • 705 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Aristotle accepts the individual choices and experiences of people and was more concerned with virtue ethics. He doesn't have an idea of free will. Along with Socrates, Aristotle believes that someone may know what the best outcome is and still do wrong, but draws the line between happiness and moral virtue. This includes depression and unhappiness. The world has moral meaning. He explains that moral virtue does not mean the end of life. His theory is that happiness is the end of life, which comes together with reason. Virtue is a state of personality that has to do with someone’s choice.…

    • 101 Words
    • 1 Page
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    If Aristotle is claiming that a life of contemplation is the best life, he is essentially claiming that a life of philosophy is the best kind of life. Not only is it the the happiest life, it is the kind of life that is dearest to the gods. I cannot help but think he is somewhat trying to depict that philosophers exist perhaps closest to the gods. A philosopher is the ultimate contemplator, and so based on Aristotle’s claims, it appears as though the life of a philosopher is, in fact, the final action for human happiness. If this is the case, it makes me question the underlying purpose of Aristotle’s ethical views on contemplation as the ultimate tool to human happiness. Is he merely trying to get us all to turn to philosophy? Could this be, in some way, his strategy of painting philosophy as a way of life, perhaps some type of conviction? I am sure there are many arguments that can point to the falsity of my claim, but I still think it’s important to flag Aristotle’s need to constantly tie in philosophy with the nature of…

    • 487 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    The Aim of Man

    • 699 Words
    • 3 Pages

    Aristotle starts off in his essay explaining the definitions of Good, Primacy of Statecraft and the study of Ethics. He defines good as where all things are to be aimed, for example health. He then defines Statecraft as citizens of a state, a country, and of the world need to do good for their own good but more importantly for the good of the state. He also characterizes various types of good. Finally, the definition on study of Ethics. This talks about the pure excellence of justice that involves the disagreements and agreements of uncertainty and certainty. Aristotle also talks about happiness and where a certain point can be overlooked and how arguments can be led from first principles. First principles came about in a variety of ways: by induction, direct perception, and habituation. The question then leads to where the sources of happiness come from but a result of virtue of learning or some kind of training. Because the virtue of learning and the some kind of training is rewarded by a blessing that is generally shared but with the exception of the virtue being stunted. Aristotle concludes his essay by examining the most human element, the soul, and its relationship to virtue. Aristotle’s definition of happiness is, “Happiness is a certain activity of the soul in accordance with perfect virtue”.…

    • 699 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Aristotle and Happiness

    • 355 Words
    • 2 Pages

    1. According to the text a full functioning completely happy person will be mentally, physically, spiritually, financially, professionally, creatively, and socially healthy & well rounded individual. Happiness involves being really alive and not just existing. Aristotle believes that a person should work hard doing what they love, they also shouldn’t devote their lives to acquiring riches since riches don’t provide happiness. One should also reject fame and public success to become happy as self sufficiency is believed to provide happiness. Happiness is a process starting from infancy. A happy life is a life where spiritual, physical and social needs are met under reason and moderation. I think Aristotle recipe of happiness involves a person making a conscience decision to do the right thing in all aspects of their life. I think the happiness he refers to is obtained by living a healthy life, being in tune with our psyche, having a career that we enjoy, having friends and family to love, and having enough riches to support ourselves without gloating about them.…

    • 355 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Aristotle

    • 980 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Aristotle believes that there is only one goal, one ultimate end for every individual—that is eudaimonia, translated as happiness, not as a feeling but happiness as the highest human good or a life full of activity. He claims that a person should live a way of life distinct from the lives of animals, where they only live for the sake of living or pleasure.1 As human beings, people should use their power of speech to communicate and make rational decisions within a polity, striving to live their lives up to their full potential and to their full capacity for a happy life.2 The life of politics, the via activa, is thus the key to the chief good or the best life for humans; however, the life of action must be of certain type of quality, in accordance with reason, since different actions may lead to the good or the bad life. In other words, a person’s actions must be in line with arête, with virtue or excellence.3…

    • 980 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Aristotle states that everything that a man does is for an end purpose. He defines happiness as actions in accordance with reason. If humans live out their lives to their full potential and live according to reason and with virtues, than they can obtain happiness. In today’s world, many think that happiness is got from money, success, and fame. Many people believe that these things are essential for happiness. Aristotle suggests, it is what we do in our life, not what we gain from our life, like money or success, which gives us happiness. He argues that happiness does not occur instantly. In our world today, we want to feel happiness instantly. However, Aristotle does not rely on this idea. He believes that happiness comes over time and the things that happen in short lived moments do not truly make us happy, but that the activities or virtues, we engage in over time give us happiness in the end. He contends that by achieving certain virtues, it leads to happiness in the long run, not in an instantaneous moment. In our society today, Aristotle’s ideas on happiness would not be useful. In Aristotle’s perfect world, everyone would be virtuous and happy. Unfortunately, that is not how our society works today. Aristotle’s ideas are inaccurate because many people gain happiness out of doing unvirtuous actions. For example, Hitler gained some sort of happiness out of murdering Jews.…

    • 555 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    It is clear that Aristotle thinks happiness is what every human desires. He defines happiness as the highest good (Ethics 1095a), which by definition every person pursues as an ultimate end (1094a). Furthermore, he says that happiness can only be achieved through fulfillment of our characteristic activity, which is the thing that something does which makes it be that thing; for example, the characteristic activity of a flute-player is playing the flute. The good of anything with a characteristic activity is to perform that activity well (1097b). The characteristic activity of a human, says Aristotle, is a life concerned with reason (1098a), or more specifically, the activity of a soul concerned with reason. Therefore, the good of a human is to perform this activity well; that is, to live a life in accordance with virtue. Because this is a good of the soul, and goods of the soul are the best type of good (1098b), and because achieving the good of a human is the ultimate goal of being a human, Aristotle says that a life in accordance with…

    • 1551 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    In this section I will explain Aristotle’s definition of eudaimonia and its relationship to happiness, morality and the virtues. Aristotle defines eudaimonia in the first book of the Nicomachean Ethics as “virtuous activity in accordance with reason” and that this is the highest good for human beings. For Aristotle, eudaimonia can be translated into a “human life of flourishing” since it occurs throughout a person’s life. This lifelong happiness is complete and sufficient in itself, meaning that a person lives it as an end in itself and not for anything else beyond it. An important aspect of reaching our own eudaimonia is to function well as human beings. Aristotle presents his concept of the human function by stating that what makes human function so distinct is not just to obtain nutrition and to grow because that aspect of life is shared with plants and it is also not perception because that is something shared with animals. Our ultimate human function therefore is reason and not just reason alone but to act in accordance to reason.…

    • 1773 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    aristole and kant

    • 734 Words
    • 3 Pages

    Aristotle’s main argument is that happiness is the ultimate goal for humans., “Happiness depends on ourselves, more than anybody else.” Aristotle states that the end goal for all human activities is happiness. He also states that as happiness is achieved, it occurs over the course of a lifetime; like friends, wealth, and knowledge.…

    • 734 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Aristotle believed that we as humans have natural obligations that provide happiness. Happiness consists of pleasure and the capacity to develop reasoning.…

    • 1095 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Aristotle and Virtue

    • 495 Words
    • 2 Pages

    Aristotle believes that we need virtue, both of thought and of character, to achieve that completeness leading to happiness. This is the function: activity in the soul in accord with virtue, where soul is defined as what is in us that carries out our characteristic activity. Aristotle is right in believing we need virtue.…

    • 495 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    In Nicomachean Ethics Aristotle makes the case for the fulfillment of Eudimonea, the greatest happiness and good that a person can achieve. He states that there are 3 ways in which creatures, human specifically go about trying to fulfill Eudimonea. The first is through pleasure, be it sensual, tactile or mental. Through this basic ingredient me experience such things as food, games, and science fiction novels. The 2nd part of Aristotle’s Eudimonea is honor and recognition, be it recognition from friends, or from an achievement. This also represents political achievements as Aristotle claimed that through service to others you strengthened you self. The third, final and most important aspect of Eudimonea is reflection. Being able to subject you own beliefs and experiences to rigorous self examination and reinterpretation. This is the key part of Aristotle’s teachings, being able to take your pleasures and recognition and reflect and glean from them. One thing that Aristotle is very clear on is that to achieve these objectives one must have been subjected to the proper society when growing up, a society steeped in order. A lawless or anarchic society would not meet the base prerequisites for this objective to be fulfilled.…

    • 439 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Aristotle argues that everything we do is for some purpose and all our actions aim at some goal or end. We naturally aim at the good or in other words, “that at which all things aim.” The final end is to be happy which is also considered to be the highest good.…

    • 1347 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Good Essays