Like Plato, Aristotle believed that the benefit of the policy exceeds the benefit of the individual, it's not the whole must exist for the part, but for the sake of the whole. "I wish, of course, the benefit of one person, but beautiful and divine good of the people and the states." Regarding the purpose, benefit and happiness, there are three basic lifestyles. People are the most rude and vulgar seek pleasures, like cattle, other are worthy and active, eager as a boon to Honor (τιμή). This is a higher purpose than pleasure, but it cannot be called completely perfect. In fact, the conceited depends on the recognition of others, and good - it's still something inherent and inalienable. Finally, the last way of life is the contemplative life. Aristotle also mentions life moneymaker, but wealth cannot be ended in itself, because it is always there for the sake of something else. Talking about the good and the good that Aristotle could not do without a critical analysis of the Platonic doctrine of the idea of good. The general idea of the good cannot exist, because the benefit is defined in a variety of categories (essentially, qualities and attitudes), and for them the general idea does not exist. Further, if there was one common idea of the good, then there would be a science of the idea. But science, talking about the good, according to Aristotle, a lot, in fact determine what a timely manner and that there is no (good for the category of time), to be able to battle the art of war, and for the disease - the art of the physician.
In addition, the eternity of Plato's good does not add to it with respect to other benefits anything significant, because, says Aristotle, the eternal white thing is not whiter than temporary. Even if we assume the existence of such benefits at all, still it cannot be anyone to carry out in their practice. Finally, even if there is a benefit, it will not help to carry out specific goals and benefits in various arts and crafts. What good doctor or a carpenter, if he knows the Platonic idea of the good of all. What is good for man was made? It is contained in a certain activity, inherent in man as such as a carpenter designed for specific activities and results of such activities, as well as people. This activity can be an activity of nutrition and growth, feelings, for it is not what distinguishes man from other living beings. Such activities will be "active life having judgment being", and to do well. The basic definition of happiness, which is given by Aristotle, is that it is activity of the soul in accordance with virtue, and if a few virtues, then according to the most perfect of them, and for all human life. Therefore, cannot be happy either animal or child, because they do not have the judgment and cannot be guided by them to perform virtuous deeds. This definition is consistent, according to Aristotle, with traditional Greek division of goods to external, relating to the body and related to the soul; because it is spiritual benefits are benefits in the proper sense.
Aristotle's understanding of happiness is fast, he emphasizes that happiness is a certain activity of the soul. You cannot be happy without carrying out the relevant activities while at rest or during sleep. Activities in accordance with the virtues opposite just rude and external pleasures, but pleasure it. It carries a pleasure in itself, and natural and not artificial or unnatural. Although happiness is - activity of the soul, for it nevertheless needs and external benefits and favorable circumstances, since it is impossible to carry out great deeds, not having any means. "For scarcely happy ugly in appearance, evil origin, single and childless," - says Aristotle. Can destroy what happiness are all kinds of ups and downs? Aristotle answers this question in accordance with common sense. Aggravated misfortune happened to the man, of course, were not allowed to call it blissful. But since nothing can get him to commit unspeakable acts, he will not, and quite unfortunate. Can not deprive a person of happiness and misfortune happening to his family. Since the definition of happiness is related to the concept of virtue, Aristotle turns to the virtues. In order to clarify the nature of the virtues it is necessary to know that the soul is divided on three parts. The lowest part of a plant, it acts mainly during sleep, when a person cannot perform any virtuous deeds. This part has nothing to do with virtue. In the rest of the shower still visible two parts: one part having a judgment, and the appetitive part, which may act contrary to the rational part, but it may obey a reasonable and consistent with the part. It is the last two parts are responsible for the good life. Virtues are divided into accordance with these parts on the mental (διανοητικού) and on the virtues of character, and character (ήθικαί). To the thinking include wisdom, intelligence and judgment, the moral - generosity and prudence. Mental training acquired virtues, moral - through habit. Virtues exist in us by nature, but not contrary to nature, the habit of virtue, according to Aristotle, is natural.
You cannot become virtuous, without committing any acts, we acquire the appropriate warehouse moral character, only exercising or not exercising moral act. In the spirit of the Greek sense of proportion Aristotle defines the nature of the virtues of character. For these virtues are destructive excess and deficiency, and beneficial - having middle. Cannot be virtuous nor a coward, just afraid nor reckless heart of oak is going to take any risk. As nutritional destructive and overeating, and malnutrition, as well as in the moral life of destructive extremes, and the middle is good. However, we are not talking about an abstract middle, the middle at all. Aristotle points out that it is important for the virtues of a particular middle, which is the midpoint in this particular case. Achieve this mid - something very complicated, easy to miss the goal, and go directly to the target, i.e. in the middle, is not easy. " And to be angry for any available, as well as simply and hand and squander the money, but to spend on what you want, as long as you need, when, and how in order to be capable not just, and it is not just. "Therefore, with respect to excess and lack of virtue - it's the middle (μεσότης), and about the benefits of virtue - is the pinnacle (άκρότης). However, not every act and every passion may have as a good middle between excess and lack. In fornication, theft and homicide cannot be an appropriate means, these acts are bad as such. Thus, the coordinates of the moral virtues can be called a surplus, and the lack of middle and extremes as opposed to themselves, and the middle. By nature, we are prone to some of the extremes, so it is necessary to reach the middle carried away by the opposite side. So, if someone on the nature of a coward, then, to reach the middle, he has to become more reckless and bold. Then it reaches the courage, excellence and true middle ground between these two extremes.
Moral virtues are mainly related to pleasure and pain, so basic definition of this virtue would be the following: a virtue - is the ability to do well in all that relates to pleasure and pain, and depravity - is its opposite. And not just in the act, the seemingly moral, would be those actually. For such an act is required to commit to the following conditions: it must be conscious; it should be selected intentionally and for the sake of action, it must be sure and steady. Aristotle defines virtue as a moral abutment (storage) of the soul, that is. E. As that, which is why we are right or wrong own passions? The most important ethical issue is the question of arbitrary (κούσιον) and involuntary (άκούσιον), on the choice of (προαίρεσις) and will (βουλή), knockdown in the third book, "Nicomachean Ethics." "Servitude" or "violent" and "involuntary", "what is happening is not voluntarily anyone» (άκούσιον) is such a thing, the source of which is beyond the doer of activities, and the figure itself does not contribute to this act. There are also mixed actions, when a person performs a certain act under duress. Without these circumstances, he would never have done, so this act cannot be called arbitrary, occurred at his behest. But since all the power here present certain choices; such an act cannot be called involuntary and violent.
Another important definition of involuntary is that it is done out of ignorance. Ignorance becomes critical in the case where it refers to the condition and purpose for this action. Thus, in the case of ignorance purpose of the action is the action would be involuntary, for doing something that people did not know what the result will his act. Within the region of arbitrary Aristotle distinguishes the sphere of conscious choice (προαίρεσις). Indeed, any wider than a conscious choice, because, according to Aristotle, children and animals arrive randomly, but not consciously choosing. Conscious choice is characterized by the following features. It is inherent only to those beings that possess reasoning. He never connected with the impossible. Although it can be a lot to be impossible, such as immortality, it cannot be selected. Therefore, conscious choice to be only those things that are considered to depend on who chooses. Conscious choice unlike desire does not deal with the goal, but the means to that goal. We cannot say that "I choose health or happiness," but "I wish you health or happiness, and choose such a means to achieve this goal." Conscious choice and different from the opinions as opinions may be about the eternal and impossible, and the choice - not, moreover, the choice is determined in terms of the virtuous and the vicious, not true and false, as an opinion. It is possible to make a true opinion about what is good, but do not select it, and the opposite effect of perversity. Thus, the ethical choice is already in terms of what is arbitrary, and proceeds the solution is (προβεβουλευμένον), because it is associated with reasoning and thinking. If the ethical choice is defined by the concept of solutions becomes necessary to understand the latter. First of all, "the decision is made that depends on us and carried out in his actions." You can not take any decision on the space nor the proportionality diagonal, or the discovery of the treasure, and so on. D.
We make decisions that depend on us, and not always the same. In addition, "there are solutions that usually take place in a certain way, but whose outcome is not clear, and what lies uncertainty." Solution, as the choice does not concern the goals, but means to an end, but the decision is preceded by conscious choice. "The object and purpose of the election decision is the same, only the object of choice in advance is strictly defined, for consciously choosing what is approved by decision." Thus, the "object of conscious choice is the subject of the decision, striving to circumstances beyond our control; Indeed, deciding, we make your judgment and then coordinate our efforts with the decision. "If so, and the actions of the virtues associated with the means, then virtue and vice is up to us, and you cannot be good or bad against their will. If a person can perform only evil deeds cannot act virtuously, this means that in it from the constant repetition of perverse acts have formed a vicious disposition or way of the soul, which makes him act accordingly.
But the fact that a person has developed a disposition to blame himself, his arbitrary actions, which cumulatively led it to this warehouse. To become virtuous from the vicious, if at all possible, is not enough desire, you need to perform virtuous deeds, which can lead to the formation of a virtuous way of life of the soul. In addition to the virtues of character or nature, which are peculiar to the irrational part of the soul, Aristotle analyzes and mental virtues that belong to that part of the soul, which has a mind. This part also takes the division into two types: on the scientific or the cognitive (έπιστημονικόν) and the reasoning or to calculate (λογιστικόν). The first focused on the eternal, immutable and necessary things that exist, and the second - that can be changed. Both parts seek the truth, but the scientific part is aimed at truth as such, reason - the truth, which implies actions and consistent with the right desire. Soul attains truth through five things: art, science, prudence, wisdom and intelligence. It is they who are responsible for the mental virtues. The hallmark of science, Aristotle believes its focus on the eternal and necessary and its method is a proof. Art as a kind of creativity is directed to what may be different, with the aim of understanding, "as there is something of the things that may or may not be, and whose origin in the Creator." Thus, the art of true judgment is involved, aiming at the creation. Discretion is neither a science nor an art. It is not a science, because it may be the beginning and the other, that is. E. They do not admit the evidence, it is not art, because the judgment is not aimed at the creation of creative, and actions. She - a true sacrament judgment warehouse or property of the soul, aimed at the implementation of actions for good or evil to humans. Discretion, of course, is run by the part of the soul, possessing judgment, which is aimed at what could it be otherwise, because human actions are not necessary. Mind - an ability that does not prove anything, but knows very beginnings of that which is eternal and necessary. Wisdom may prove and know the beginning. It is, according to Aristotle, as if the main science. Wisdom, which says Aristotle, is not the conventional wisdom; the last judgment is much closer.
You can be wise, that is connoisseur of the most valuable and divine things, but devoid of practical intelligence. Thus, the art and judgment belong to the lowest, and the knowledge, wisdom and intelligence - the higher part of the soul, possessing judgment. On the basis of the doctrine of virtues, Aristotle comes to the most important topic of ethics, the doctrine of happiness. Happiness - it's not something given, not a warehouse of the soul, but the activity that deserves the election itself, i.e. such that looking for its own sake. Happiness cannot be fun, for entertainment - this is rest and idleness, and happiness - activities and activities in accordance with the highest virtue, that is virtues of the highest part of the soul. As the highest part of the soul - the mind, happiness - is a smart contemplation. Contemplative activity as opposed to our actions can not be anything broken, it delivers the greatest pleasure, she is self-sufficient, as a wise man, secured all necessary not need anybody for your contemplation. Just love it for its own sake, even a virtuous deeds can bring some benefit in addition to himself. Contemplation exceed government and military virtues, because it does not deprive a man of leisure and not elected for the sake of something else. This activity is contemplative we should rather be called not human, but divine. People will live in contemplation, not because he is a man, but because there is something divine. And this part is the man himself, so we cannot confine ourselves to death and the human, political, military and economic matters, it is necessary to achieve happiness and to seek divine "to rise to immortality." Second, a lower form of a happy life is a life according to the judgment and moral virtues. It is also fine, but inferior to the first. The contemplative and wise, because he is a man and lives together with others, must also perform actions according to moral virtue and have a need for the necessary things, but still his life is far superior to the life of the person performing the moral virtue without contemplation.
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Adler, Mortimer J. Aristotle for Everybody. New York: Macmillan. A popular exposition for the general reader (1987).
Cohen, S. Marc; Matthews, Gareth B, eds. On Aristotle's Categories. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. ISBN 0-8014-2688-X. (1991)
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