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Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics

Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics is centered on the concept of virtue ethics, which can be approached from different perspectives depending on one’s philosophical precepts. Aristotle advances the view that ethics should be contextualized based on whether an action is informed by the pursuit of excellence. The judgment on whether one acted ethically must be dependent on the motive and level of brilliance shown. However, the actor’s pursuit of happiness should precede all other aspects that a particular society may consider in gauging moral values, a view informed the Aristotelian philosophy that happiness is the sole ultimate end.

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People do not agree on the constituents of happiness, as what makes one person happy may not work for everyone else. The pursuit of compromise about happiness culminates in the concept of moral ethics, which refers to what a particular society considers as an acceptable code of conduct. Nevertheless, Aristotle’s Nicomachean ethics is a commendable attempt, although the philosophy is still imprecise because of the diversity in happiness variables. Essentially, Aristotle’s concept of moral ethics is founded on the view that people acquire different moral perspectives through practice rather than instruction and reasoning. Virtue requires one to have a positive perception of both pain and pleasure, as these are inevitable experiences. Bias towards either of the two extremes can easily lead to a compromised ethical and moral orientation.

In overview, Aristotle’s concept of Nicomachean ethics is based on the philosophical view that happiness is the only justifiable ultimate end that people pursue. The determination of what to consider as morally and ethically right should depend on the performer’s brilliance. Hence, the desire for excellence should serve as the primary drive for morals and ethics, as virtue dictates that humans should strive for exemplary performance in being good people.

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