Aristotle's The Nicomachean Ethics By Aristotle
In Aristotle’s discussion of the goods we seek, he rather quickly disregards pleasure as a possible highest good. In Bk. 1. Chap. 5, Aristotle even states that a person who has chosen a life dependent on pleasure has chosen a life for grazing animals (1095b20-21). In life, grazing animals only seek to reach satisfaction from eating and then resting. By saying this, Aristotle means that by only seeking pleasure, a person is seeking no more than what a cow …show more content…
Although a political life seeking honor is a life for more “cultivated people” rather than the “vulgar” people seeking pleasure, it is still an end not worthy of being the highest due to the superficiality. When people seek honor, they seek being seen as honorable by other people more than feeling honorable themselves. That is why politicians focus on trying to do things to improve their image rather than just simply being themselves. In order to be the highest good for human beings, that good must be fully internal and that is where honor fails. We do not achieve honor by ourselves and we can lose honor easily as opposed to virtue. In addition, Aristotle states that in trying to achieve honor, people are also trying to believe that they are virtuous or excellent. Regardless of if they really are or not, by gaining these opinions from other people, they are able to “convince themselves that they are good” (1095b28). This in itself shows that honor cannot be the highest good because honor is being used in order to gain another good.
In my view, I completely agree with Aristotle’s statements against honor because I cannot deny the fact that when people seek honor, they seek to be honored by other people. If people solely sought honor just for their own self, instead of seeking honor, that person would be seeking integrity and being virtuous, a completely different thing than the thing being sought after when Aristotle talks about