Aristotle 's Views On Friendship

1357 Words6 Pages
It is well known that Aristotle attaches importance to friendship within his ethical reflections. It suffices to recall that the Nicomachean Ethics, the most representative of the ethical works of Aristotle, contains two complete books, books VIII and IX, dedicated to friendship. This means that the theme of friendship is given a much wider space than other fundamental ethical issues. However, this breadth in his explanations is not something casual, but rather responds to Aristotle’s belief that friendship is something particularly valuable and we would say that is something unique in the life of human beings. Friendship, in fact, is an incentive, among others, for a happy life is --in Aristotle’s words-- "as necessary for life" as necessary for a happy life itself. Therefore, Aristotle says, "For no one would choose to live without friends even if he had all the other goods” (Nicomachean Ethics VIII 1155a, pp. 119). Moreover, besides necessary, friendship is something noble, something beautiful, for it is a virtue, or it involves virtue. Ultimately, since human being is a social animal, which naturally tends to coexistence with other human beings, friendship is the fullest realization of sociability and more fulfilling way of living. Aristotle a little further on states that there are three kinds of friendship; friendships for utility, pleasure and complete friendship. The first two, friendship of utility and pleasure, I will say they are directly selfish because,
Open Document