Excessive fearlessness and exceeding confidence, nor exceeding fear and lack of confidence (deficiency), does not make a courageous man. Aristotle talks about the courageous person, and that person acts with the awareness of the concept of honor and expresses it in a manner that is proportionate, knowing exactly what to really fear. Many different things can be frightening; one must decipher these things the greater fear from the lesser for the sake of the beautiful. (Aristotle 49, Sachs) To correctly aim at what is beautiful, one actively achieves moral virtue. The beautiful is the purest form of beauty and Aristotle states that beautiful action comes from a beautiful character and aims at beauty. Virtue aims at enduring fears and feeling confident with respect to rationality. Aristotle claims that the courageous man may fear things that not everyone feels the need to fear, but he will endure and overcome these fears and feel rationally confident.
Socrates declares that there is no one to teach people about wisdom and virtues. His conversation with Callias explains that no one can teach wisdom and virtue as there is no one that has mastered wisdom and virtue. Human beings are fallible creatures, morality, ethics and virtues are not always primarily considered in the multitude of decisions and actions that are performed every day. Humans are imperfect individuals, bound by no definitive moral code that is enforceable under any circumstance. Humans are creatures of free will and with free will comes evil and righteousness simultaneously. No one can teach a human being to always be righteous, kind, caring and generous. Socrates declares that there is no one capable of teaching all of these virtues because humans are all imperfect individuals but through inner evaluation humans can constantly strive to get closer to perfection.
An Exposition of Aristotelian Virtues In his Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle explores virtues as necessary conditions for being happy. A virtuous person is a person with a disposition toward virtuous actions and who derives pleasure from behaving virtuously. Aristotle distinguishes between two types of human virtue: virtues of thought and virtues of character. Virtues of thought are acquired through learning and include virtues like wisdom and prudence; virtues of character include bravery and charity, which are acquired by habituation and require external goods to develop. As a consequence, not all people can acquire virtues of character because not all people have the external goods and resources required to develop that disposition.
Intelligence, wit, judgment, and the other talents of the mind, however they may be named, or courage, resolution, perseverance, as qualities of temperament, are undoubtedly good and desirable in many respects; but these gifts of nature may also become extremely bad and mischievous if the will which is to make use of them, and which, therefore, constitutes what is called character, is not good.
* 20-21 List 5 parallels between moral and intellectual virtues. ---Cultivating the virtues is a developmental process extending through a lifetime/ Growth in the virtues is not automatic/ We are not alone on our efforts to become morally and intellectually virtuous people/ our careers as a moral and intellectual agents are enveloped in a community context/ We must work to sustain our gains in the moral and intellectual life, since regression is a real possibility/ Growing in intellectual virtue requires that we grow in moral virtues, and vice versa.---
Next, I will show the 4 kinds of persons that Aristotle believes exist, they’re the virtuous, strong-willed, vicious, and weak-willed persons. The first person is the virtuous person, Aristotle believes that a virtuous person is a person that behaves in a highly well-mannered way. A virtuous person knows how to act as a mean within the deficiency (too little) and excess (too much). “Hence virtue is a sort of medial condition because it is able to aim at and hit the mean.” (2.6 1106b27-1106b28) The virtuous person often does things through habit and continuous practice rather than having someone teach them because it can’t be taught. “From this, it is also clear that none of the virtues of character comes about in you naturally, since nothing natural can be habituated to be otherwise.” (2.1 1103a18-1103a19) Virtuous persons don’t let things overcome who they truly are, meaning their attitudes are at an even level when it comes to pleasures and pains. Virtuous persons can’t let things get the best of them, which is why the mean is so important because it gives balance and clear judgement.
To also be just in killing himself, Paul must possess the virtue of courage. Socrates explains that courage is knowing what to
For example, one thing Machiavelli mentions is that it is necessary for a Prince to appear “merciful, faithful, humane, trustworthy, and religious,” to his subjects. However, Machiavelli believes that actually having those qualities is irrelevant, as long as it looks like he is to his people. Socrates would not approve of this sort of deception of the population. When Socrates discusses wisdom and his quest for knowledge, he talks about how when he talked to both the poets and the craftsmen, they thought themselves knowledgeable in many aspects that they were not, which led him to conclude that true wisdom is knowing the limitations of knowledge. This common theme for Socrates, the acknowledgement of one’s shortcomings, is diametrically opposed to Machiavelli’s version of a Prince, who appears virtuous regardless of how accurate that is. Because of this, Socrates would not agree with Machiavelli on what makes a good Prince.
Secondly, a man named Socrates had a different way to think about what characteristics a virtuous man should hold. Socrates had
Justice is the advantage of the stronger according to Thrasymachus. He even goes a step farther to say that injustice is stronger and freer than justice, yet justice is the advantage of the stronger. Socrates shows that justice is in the receiver of it, not the provider. According to Socrates, a just man will be the healthier and happier man because he is wiser.
Socrates responds to Thrasymachus’ argument that justice is what is advantageous for the stronger by saying that justice is actually what is advantageous for the weaker. He gives an example of a horse trainer. The horse trainer is obviously the superior of the two and in charge of the horse but it does what is advantageous to the horse not himself. The same goes for a doctor who does what is good for his patients and a captain does what is advantageous for his sailors.
Socrates believed the possession of virtue was a highly valued characteristic. Although Socrates gives no clear definition of virtue it can be inferred that he is referring to the moral responsibility to do the right thing despite your own personal interest. According to Socrates, an ideal leader should be virtuous in their decisions in order to create a society founded on justice. To Machiavelli it is more important to act like you
1. What does Solomon say about virtue or moral courage that might apply here? Solomon’s philosophy about virtue or moral courage that might apply here would be toughness. Solomon argues that “toughness is a proper sense of purpose, insulated against
When talking about happiness and goodness, there must be an important quality present. According to Aristotle, people need to practice balance and moderation in their every day lives. Achieving this middle ground, or mean, translates into being virtuous in Aristotle’s mind. If virtue is present, so is its opposite vise. For every virtue, there are two vices. One vice is excessive while the other is deficiency. Courage works as a great example because it is virtuous. The excessive vise is recklessness and the
b. Those with less wisdom (fools) who still choose to endure a situation are courageous. Socrates asks Nicias to revise his statement to include the idea that knowledge entails the past, present, and future. This is necessary because fear and hope only regards the future goods and evils whereas knowledge itself regards the good and evils at all times and that knowledge is the same at all times. Therefore it is not necessary to single out a particular time regarding knowledge. By doing this, he also manages to clarify what fear and hope means so that everyone is on the same page. Additionally, they can eventually connect courage to virtue through the revised definition since that is what courage is claimed to be a part of. I believe this is necessary because you cannot come to the ultimate conclusion of courage being a part of virtue without first seeing aspects of both in the