Aristotle proposes that eudaimonia is the most intrinsically valuable. Eudaimonia is defined as happiness, or well-being. Happiness is probably the best English word to translate eudaimonia, the term also has relations with fulfillment, success, and flourishing. A person who is eudaimon is not just merely enjoying life but is relishing life by living magnificently. One’s reputation and success, different than one’s emotional welfare, can be affected after death, which makes Aristotle’s discussion of eudaimonia after death significantly more relevant.
In this essay, I will be discussing Aristotle’s conception of the “good life” which he outlined in the Nicomachean Ethics. As we will see, the “good life” for man according to Aristotle is one where we perform the particular activity which is distinctly ours and guides us towards eudaimonia – sometimes translated as ‘happiness’ or ‘well-being’. He shows us how the other conflicting depictions of the ‘good life’ are misguided, and how we should aim for a life of reason. First, however, I will discuss briefly what Aristotle meant by the term ‘good’ and then move on to how he arrived at the conclusion on human happiness. Aristotle believes that the ‘good life’ for a particular organism depends on what that organism is and the conditions it requires
Aristotle filled Nicomachean Ethics cover to cover with claims pertaining to happiness, virtue, friendship, and similar concepts. One claim states that happiness is choice worthy in its own right and self-sufficient, as “it is the end of the things achievable in action” (I.7, 1097b). Another claims finds that happiness requires external goods (I.8, 1099b). The purpose of this paper is to create a complete comprehension of these claims before responding to them. Comprehending Aristotle’s Happiness Aristotle’s claim begins with the introduction of the complete—or possibly final or perfect—good.
By experiencing the same emotion of audience is sort of ‘cleansing of the soul’ can through communication of emotion in the work of art. Just the soul is superior to the body, so is the rational part of the soul superior to the irrational part. Philosophy is good in itself because it good for what they can bring us, but others are good in themselves. The fact that it is worthwhile without bringing us anything extra means that it is one of the very highest good in soul not that it is useless. Clearly, the exhortation to philosophy was a passionate argument for dedicating one’s life to philosophy
If we follow this line of thinking there must be a superordinate good that all actions ultimately seek. Aristotle sums this up writing, “Suppose, then, that the things achievable by action have some end that we wish for because of itself… Clearly, this end will be good, that is to say, the best good” (1094a 18-22). Moreover, the existence of a superordinate good does beg the question, of what exactly this good is; the next premise of Aristotle’s argument addresses this very question. As put by Aristotle, “Now happiness, more than anything else, seems complete without qualification. For we always choose it because of itself’ (1097a 37-1097b
Instead of focusing on consequences, deontological ethics focus on duties and obligation: things we ought to do regardless of the consequences. While utilitarian ethics focuses on producing the greatest happiness for the greatest number, deontological ethics focuses on what makes us worthy of happiness. For Kant, as for the Stocis and other who emphasize duty, we are worthy of happiness only when we do our duty. As Kant explained, morality “is not properly the doctrine of how we are to make ourselves happy but of how we are to become worthy of happiness.” For Kant, morality is not a “doctrine of happiness” or set of instructions on how to become happy. Rather, morality is the “rational condition of happiness”
This paper explores the similarities and differences in Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics and John Stuart Mill’s Utilitarianism to coin a position in whether or not happiness is the ultimate end that human society aspires to acquire. In a critique of both the works, the paper adopts the Aristotelian thought citing that actions of human aims to fulfill goodness, which arguably is the happiness, one that arises from virtues practiced out of habit. Both the philosophers weigh in heavily on the role of happiness in the day to day lifestyles of humans. Adopting a sharp critic to the conventional principles of utility, Mill recognizes that happiness, as opposed to pleasure has a wider space in human attainments. He goes in deeper to explore the levels of pleasure
Aristotle’s moral philosophy called virtue ethics and based on his theory of the golden mean. He wrote about this in his book called Nicomachean Ethics, in which he explains the origin, nature and development of virtues, which are necessary to obtains life’s ultimate goal of happiness. He tries to show that ethical virtues are no different from skilled laborers; these workers know how to avoid excess and deficiencies to make the right product. This is how he describes virtue as the mean between the extremes of excess and deficiency. The mean is what will directly provide each individual with happiness.
In the Nicomachean Ethics Aristotle raised a question «How a human can achieve the real happiness?», which was the key issue in this work. First of all, we should to understand why he started to solve this problem. For 2300 years people suppose, that the real happiness includes the tangible wealth, honor and satisfaction of pleasure. But Aristotle argues, that the wealth makes us try accomplishing more and more goals, the honor doesn 't show real personality traits and excessive satisfaction needs influence badly people. Therefore, Aristotle developed the theory of happiness, which is studied nowadays.
He believes that happiness is achieved through a life full of virtue as well as the expansion of reason and the ability of greater wisdom. This is why we take various actions, to ensure enough outer goods to obtain health, leisure time and the ability to have virtue in our lifespan. Furthermore, another point Aristotle emphasizes, is that moral virtue is located somewhere between extremes and deficiency. That’s where the Greek saying “παν μετρον αριστον” comes from, meaning everything is good but don’t over or under do it. Keep everything in moderation, except virtue.
Like Bentham and Epicurean, Mill thinks that the Greatest Happiness Principle ought to be the foundation of our societies. The Greatest Happiness Principle is having most people in a society feeling the greatest amount of happiness (Pg. 88). However, unlike Bentham and Epicurean, Mill believes that the Greatest Happiness Principle should include quality with quantity (Pg. 91).
A good person will necessarily be happy because every positive means results in a positive end. The main goal for every action is happiness. Every man desires happiness and therefore they will do good to attain it. According to Aristotle, happiness comes from the inside and is an activity that is based on choices. If a person is not happy, that means he failed to choose the right path or decision.