Virtual Child

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By ariana8
Words 869
Pages 4
Ancient Greek Philosophy
Fall 2010

Thesis 4
Happiness is formally defined as the complete and sufficient good for a human being. This implies that it is desired for itself, not desired for the sake of anything else, satisfies all desire and has no evil mixed in with it. Yet, there are many different views of what sorts of life satisfy this formal definition. Aristotle specifically mentions the life of gratification, the life of money-making, the life of action, and the philosophical life, moreover, the life of contemplation or study. Although he has no patience for a life that is solely based on one’s materialistic possessions, he believes that it is morally proper for humans to seek after material possessions to provide for their sustenance. However, supporting one’s life through material possessions makes the attainment of happiness possible. There are several ways in which Aristotle approaches the question of what happiness consists of.
First, Aristotle notes that flourishing for plants and animals consists in their functioning well according to their natures. So one question we should ask is this: What is the proper or peculiar function of a human being? The function of man, something unique to him, is “an activity of soul which follows or implies a rational principle” (Nicomachean Ethics, Part 7, Line 29). Aristotle writes, “Human good turns out to be activity of soul in accordance with virtue, and if there is more than one virtue, in accordance with the best and most complete” (Nicomachean Ethics, Part 7, Line 33). This means that the active use of reason is man’s special function. This is not simply the use of reason, but the “excellent use of reason” which is virtuous activity (Nicomachean Ethics, Part 7, Line 32). This is the end toward which all other goals are directed and human fulfillment, happiness and, since it is based in this human…...

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