Essay Aristotle and Ethical Egoism

821 Words May 14th, 2013 4 Pages
Every person is born into this world with the opportunity to grow and realize his or her true potential. Aristotle believes that this is something everyone should work to achieve. No one intentionally wants to fail at being a human being and so people do whatever they can to continue to flourish. Aristotle’s philosophy favors ethical egoism because he believes that everything people do is in order to secure their own happiness in the end. According to Aristotle, human’s have two sides, an animal side and a side of reason. If we only indulged in our animal side, we would never accomplish our ultimate goal of happiness. While engaging in the pleasures of what the animal a part of us wants, we help neither others nor ourselves. In order …show more content…
Aristotle also says, “For while it is satisfactory to acquire and preserve the good even for an individual, it is finer and more divine to acquire and preserve it for people and for cities,” (Aristotle pg. 2). If people lived life only to please their own wants and needs, we would ultimately fall to our animal side. Our happiness cannot come from only appeasing our own pleasure, because if it did, we would never be successful. A person’s life would be dictated by chasing pleasures rather than living by logic and reason to accomplish goals. Through helping others and working towards the success of communities and societies, not only will life for others improve, but also everyone who preserved the good for those communities will have a much-improved quality of life. As people flourish their actions towards others and the common good continues to bring them closer to happiness, something Aristotle believes isn’t achieved until old age. People are “good” so they can enjoy happiness and the results of theirs and others virtuous choices.
Aristotle says, “It is right, then, to say that a person comes to be just from doing just actions and temperate from doing temperate action; for no one has the least prospect of becoming good from failing to do them” (Aristotle pg. 22). There are those out there who are just and virtuous in

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