Nicomachean Ethics Chapter 1 Analysis

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Nicomachean Ethics, by Aristotle, is based on the Socratic question of how men should best live. In these excerpts, Aristotle describes a close linkage between virtue and happiness. In Chapter 1 Aristotle discuss that every action and every pursuit is aimed at some sort of good. Also, most aims are intermediate in that societies’ aims are made so that higher aims seem conceivable. In Book 1 Chapter 2 he states, “Since happiness is an activity of soul in accordance with perfect virtue…” In this quote, Aristotle describes happiness as an activity rather than a state of being. Meaning that happiness only comes with perfect virtue, acting with high moral standard. Virtue is a problem of individual morality. Aristotle, in Book 1, introduces the meaning of “human virtue.” Human virtue does not involve the physical state of the body but, that of the soul. Having human virtue thus means having “human happiness,” soulful happiness. However, Aristotle…show more content…
They both bring about good and excellence but are acquired in different ways. In Book 2 Chapter 1, Aristotle describes that intellectual virtue is not required to be a morally good person. Intellectual virtue is desired because it describes why one should have moral virtue to live a happy prosperous life. Moral virtue, as implied, is described as personal characteristics that bring positive outcomes (happiness and prosperity). Aristotle explains in Book 2 Chapter 1 neither one or obtained at birth. Intellectual virtue grows by being taught and moral virtue is a type of habit, or ethos. Nothing “by nature can form a habit contrary to its nature.” To me, this means that Aristotle believed that humans were not naturally born with moral virtue; they must practice it and behave with moral virtue to form that habit. We learn by doing! Evidence of this is also found when Aristotle states, (we) “are made perfect by habit,” and “we become just by doing just

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