Aristotle And Jean Jacques Rousseau And Rousseau On The Origin Of Inequality

979 Words May 3rd, 2016 4 Pages
People such as Buddhist monks devote their lives to the search for virtue through isolation and meditation. Others believe that just simply living your life as a generous person and practicing self-preservation is virtuous. These two different, yet similar ideas of virtuous living came from the two philosophers known as Aristotle and Jean-Jacques Rousseau and their works in the Nicomachean Ethics and Discourse on The Origin of Inequality. Aristotle believed that the individual had to meet multiple qualifications in order to truly be virtuous; rather than Rousseau who thought a virtuous person simply needed to preserve their own life and have the virtue pity, or defined by him as your natural impulses. While they both disagree on whether impulse or habit is the key to becoming virtuous or even what virtue is, they agree that we pursue the virtuous life in order to avoid pain. Jean-Jacques Rousseau in The Origin of Inequality talks briefly about a savage man in the state of nature and what makes him virtuous. Rousseau said, “Qualities that can harm an individual’s preservation ‘vices’ in him and those than can contribute to its ‘virtues.’ In that case it would be necessary to call the one who least resists the simple impulses of nature the most virtuous,”(35). When reading this, one can clearly see Rousseau depicts the virtuous person being the savage man who gives into his impulses. He believes that man should only fulfill his natural impulses of sex, sleep, and food in…

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