Essay Aristotle On Friendship

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Aristotle wrote on many subjects in his lifetime but one of the virtues that he examines more extensively is friendship. Aristotle believes that there are three different kinds of friendship: utility, pleasure, and virtuous friendships. He also argues that a real friendship should be highly valued because it is a complete virtue and he believes it to be greater than honor and justice. Aristotle suggests that human’s love of utility and pleasure is the only reason why the first two types of friendships exist. Aristotle also argues that humans only set up these types of relationships for personal gain. But when he speaks of the virtuous friendships, Aristotle states that it is one of the greatest attainments one can achieve.
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They are all merely acquaintances but in some way or another, they may give you something you want or say something you need to hear; they are benefitting you and that is why you maintain a relationship with them. Then again, the moment you decide you hate McDonald’s because Big Macs make you fat, for instance, this would end your utility friendship with the McDonald’s lady because she no longer obtains anything you desire. The ability to easily lose one’s utility friendship is what closely relates it to the friendship of pleasure.
Aristotle describes the basic terms of what he refers to as the friendship of pleasure. In this type of friendship, an individual is seeking something from which they can derive pleasure. Aristotle believes that this sort of relationship is built on love and passion, which constantly changes. Similarly to utility friendships, Aristotle shows that friendships of pleasure are unstable and can abruptly change. He argues that people “quickly become friends and quickly stop” and “love and stop loving quickly”. If this is the case and people are merely running around chasing what they enjoy at the moment, this type of friendship will be frail and has the potential to fall apart quickly. This friendship is based off of the pleasure or the fun you receive by being around the person you are
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