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The Nicomachean Ethics
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Aristotle > NE Book I

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message 1: by Lia (new) - added it

Lia | 522 comments Mod
This is just a holding tank for random quotes from the primary text (NE) that caught my attention as potentially significant, or puzzling.


message 2: by Lia (new) - added it

Lia | 522 comments Mod
1.2 even if the good is the same for an individual and for a city, that of a city is evidently a greater and, at any rate, a more complete good to acquire and preserve. For while it should content us to acquire and preserve this for an individual alone, it is nobler and more divine to do so for a nation and city. And so |10| our method of inquiry seeks the good of these things, since it is a sort of politics.

Ari is investigating what is good for individual, nation, AND city. (And? Or?)

NE seems to be a subset of Politics

So … like … “good” of/ for individual as city-dwelling nationalistic political animal?


message 3: by Lia (new) - added it

Lia | 522 comments Mod
1.13 Since happiness is some activity of the soul in accord with |5| complete virtue, we must investigate virtue, since maybe that way we will also get a better theoretical grasp on happiness.

Happiness IS AN ACTIVITY and not a status, HOLY SHIT.

The mover is “the soul”, a good soul acts in such way that it is in accord with
1 Complete
2 Virtue

Not just any virtue, but complete virtue, so not just one of the items, but all of them in some kind of balance.

And that’s the reason Ari investigates Virtue, in order to reverse-engineer “happiness”/ “soul"


message 4: by Lia (new) - added it

Lia | 522 comments Mod
1.13 It seems too that someone who is truly a politician will have worked most on virtue, since he wishes to make the citizens good and obedient to the laws.

As opposed to a “true Scotsman,” for example =_=

The job of a politician is to make the citizens
1 good, and
2 obedient to the laws

But we are trying to figure out what is good … help, I’m caught in a loop.

Ari is really trying to work with "the city” here, not seeing that Polis-Philosopher tension that killed Socrates and amused Aristophanes.

I think many of the “anti-Aristotelian” camp modernists (and maybe philosophers in the 20th century) were essentially against that counsel to “obey.” I.e. Aristotle is objectionable because “rebellion” became respectable in [a certain period of] the modern world.


message 5: by Lia (new) - added it

Lia | 522 comments Mod
1.13 By “human virtue,” though, we mean not that of the body but that of the soul; and happiness, we say, is an activity of the soul.

Interesting that Ari singles out “human” and “not body but soul” — again, not a dichotomy, but in fact tripartite: body, beast, soul.

reminds me of how Homer kept comparing his characters to (or morphing them into) varieties of animals. Pigs, lions, boars, geese, hawks… Maybe seeing humans as part of a continuum in the animal kingdom, but with slightly different proportion of akrasia/ deliberate choice, is older than Aristotle.


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