Aristotle 's Portrayal Of Friendship

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You have two close friends, while one is alive the other dead, but your relationship with both of them work to develop your virtuous character. While in Nicomachean Ethics Aristotle 's depiction of friendship is a lively one, they show affection and their own virtuous character translates to our own. In contrast, Seneca 's On The Shortness Of Life suggests that we should seek friends of virtue with the dead because they possess the ability to always be with us and guide us with their own knowledge of life. While Aristotle and Seneca would rather choose one form of friendship over the other, we can denounce the notion that we must pick one of these two friends when we can have both because these two types of relationships work together to…show more content…
“But friendship seems to consist more in giving than in receiving affection” (213). Friendship in itself is virtuous and when you obtain a true friend not only is establishing the relationship itself seeking virtue but obtaining it as well. This is made evident when Aristotle tells us this, “. . .friendship; for it is a kind of virtue, or implies virtue, and it is also necessary for living” (200). However, for a true friendship to be good, the two bodies of the friendship must be good individually in order to obtain virtue through the relationship. “Only the friendship of those who are good, and similar in their goodness, is perfect. For these people, each alike wish good for the other qua good. . .” (205). Good people are friends because they are both good and seek out goodness in their own lives and do this through their friends. “The good are friends for each other’s sake because their bond is goodness” (208). By befriending good people, you are able to absorb the other person 's goodness, which in turn leads to your own virtue and your virtue only adds to the other 's. “For when a good man becomes a friend to another he becomes that other’s good; so each loves his own good, and repays what he receives by wishing the good of the other…” (209).
Another interesting point that Aristotle discusses is this notion that we see ourselves in our friends and this not only leads us to them

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