Nicomachean Ethics: Aristotle's Related To Happiness

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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. As Aristotle notes that each practice and action may have its own immediate good, he finds that the complete good is “for the sake of which the other things are done” (I.7, 1097a). For example, medicine’s immediate good is health, but health is ultimately for
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Food is necessary for a happy life, but to seek pleasure in food can cause unrest. Many external goods—such as wealth or housing—follow this pattern, leading Aristotle to suggest finding pleasure only in virtuous actions as they “both please lovers of the fine and are pleasant in their own right” (I.8, 1099a). In this way, Aristotle limits the use of external goods to appeasing human needs. Friendship—another external good—deserves special consideration. It is practiced virtuously in the form of complete friendship, where “they wish goods to each other for each other’s own sake” (VIII.3, 1156b). As this friendship is strong in its own right—and not for the sake of mere pleasure or utility—it is stable. “Further, good people’s life together allows the cultivation of virtue” (IX.9, 1170a). A complete friendship satisfies the need for companionship while also creating virtuous pleasure and encouraging virtuous action.
Criticizing Aristotle’s
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