Epicurus Vs Aristotle

Decent Essays
What’s the one thing everyone wants to achieve in life and is the ultimate end for every action people do? Philosophers from almost every generation are trying to figure out what that is, some even referring to it as “the good”. But what is “the good”? Epicurus would argue that “the good” is simply pleasure, honor, and glory; however, that is not the ultimate end for every action people do. According to Aristotle, the ultimate end that every action seeks is happiness and that’s “the good” everyone desires. The idea of happiness being the ultimate end, is superior to Epicurus’s idea of pleasure, honor, and glory, due to the fact that all those things are intended to bring forth some form of happiness. Therefore, happiness must be what everyone…show more content…
The soul also plays a key role in happiness as well, more specifically an active soul. But what is an active soul exactly? According to Aristotle, “the function of man is an activity of soul which follows or implies a rational principle”. There are two forms of a rational principle with one referring to “exercising thought”, and the other to “being obedient”. Meaning, that an active soul refers to the ability to reason and to have self-control to resist certain pleasures. This in turn would assist in leading to happiness due to the fact that activity of the soul is “the function” or purpose of man. It’s human nature to want to perform your function well, so by developing an active soul it will help to achieve happiness. This is no different from an athlete who performs well in a game. The idea of doing well at something, especially something that is believed to be your purpose, evokes a sense of accomplishment and allows for happiness to flourish. In addition, the higher activity of the soul makes it easier to perform virtuous actions. Since virtues like patience and wisdom require a certain level of obedience and reasonable thinking, having an active soul can be an assistance when practicing the virtues. Therefore, when an active soul is paired with the practice of the virtues it makes for complete…show more content…
Through its self-sufficiency, its relationship to virtue, and how having an active soul plays a parts in becoming happy. All these ideas when combined create a complete understanding of happiness and express the important role happiness has in making a life worth living. Not only that, but the journey toward happiness through the virtues and an active soul help to develop peoples character making them a better person overall. Happiness after all is “the good” that philosophers have been trying to discover and it becomes more evident after studying happiness in more depth. As has been noted, happiness is the end for every action people do, whether it be though pleasure or virtue, in the end the main thing all people desire is
Get Access