The Characteristics Of Aristotle's Virtue Ethics

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Aristotle’s Virtue Ethics People seek to live well and to be treated well. In order for people to live well and flourish, it requires a good moral character. A good moral character fostered during early development that into adulthood becomes second nature. A moral character that becomes second nature through repeated actions described as having virtuous moral traits. Virtue Ethics that Aristotle describes as “a trait of character manifested in habitual action.” (Rachels EMP 161) Virtues such as courage, generosity, honesty, and loyalty to family and friends that Aristotle believed help to answer the question “What traits make someone a good person?” (Rachels EMP 159)
Virtuous Traits and the Golden Mean Those virtuous traits that people
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Virtue ethics provides moral motivation based on positive characteristics people find desirable to posses such as patience, kindness, and compassion. Virtue ethics also brings to light how all relationships between people cannot be impartial as people are devoted to family and friends they share close personal relationships with. Although virtue ethics provides guidance of attributes that are considered appealing, a limitation of virtue ethics is that it does not tell people when to apply good virtues. (Rachels EMP 173) This is where a person relies upon reason and wisdom as there will be times when anger, although not necessarily considered a good moral virtue, will be appropriate so long as one does not lose self control. In addition, virtue ethics does not address moral conflicts that can arise such as being honest even when it will injure another person’s feelings. (Rachels EMP 173) It’s up to the individual to decide which moral virtues take precedence in one’s life as well as having the knowledge to understand the effect one’s moral character will have on their life and the lives of others. There are no hard or fast rules for people to follow in order to be a good virtuous person and to live well. Aristotle asks the question, “What is a good man?” and his answer is “an activity of the soul in conformity with virtue.” (qtd Rachels EMP …show more content…
As it mentions in Rachels, “They portray the moral agent as someone who listens to reason, figures out the right thing to do, and does it.” (qtd Rachels EMP 158) Having a good moral foundation while growing up that continues throughout one’s life in addition to taking care of ourselves as well as considering others, and avoiding destructive and negative vices while choosing the mean or middle ground when acting based upon good moral virtues seems to be what defines a person as good and how people can live

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