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PHL 201 - week 11 (april 1st).docx

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PHL 201
James Cunningham

PHL 201 Monday April 1 st  Rational Being – Aristotle believed that Human beings were rational animals  He believed that we were different form God, because we are animals and God is not o God is not a kid, animals yawn- animals yawn o Animals are born, grow old, then die o Human being are the most rational animals o Excellent human - Virtue governs all of our actions – acting reasonably in all cases o Most self –sufficient – able to take care of yourself o Why is it good to be self-sufficient? – you don’t have to depends on anyone else. If one depends on anyone else, you cannot do what you want o If you’re self-sufficient, you can do whatever you want o The greatest impediment to freedom is lack of ability o What is it about being able that makes you freer ? – the world is made for those who are able, they’re not at mercy as much a others o EX: someone is very able with respect to the Piano; if you’re able, you can do things people unable can’t; lets suppose both want to play piano, the able person can, the other can’t. The ability of the person who can is free; the other person is not free o Unreliable – o Oppressors – “the evil”- they’ll do what you want but harm you in the process o Kind –  An excellent life is one that is self-sufficient  Diversions – toys, shopping, drinking, dances etc o Problem - We would still be relying on others (for the toys) o We are like the poor – we need to be diverted, distracted o Sally Horsefall – she wants praise and honour, not diversions because she was born with them o Your life is in pursuit of honour – how does that make you less self-sufficient ? – you need a cheering audience, giving you honour, but sometimes you get “boo-ed” or might get tired of them o Alternative – live a life of virtue; happiness depends on having a virtuous character  What is it that’s hard to change? The habits, which is the expression of your character; if this is source of happiness, then you won’t want to change  If you were to lose an arm – if you are virtuous, you will be more resourceful- you will handle misfortune better  A mark on your character – o You start to do something badly, you practice to get better at doing things badly o You start to do good things at young age, builds good character, by imitating virtuous actions; you’re bad at it at first, then after about 6 months, it seems odd to not be doing it – it has become part of your character o Becomes a habit – you can do something without being forced, which means you will do it over the long term, which will make you more virtuous, which gives proficiency o You are not virtuous if you don’t love it o An evil person will do virtuous things, but only if he is forced, but will stop as soon as he doesn’t have to anymore o Proficiency – love o Ethos – ethics – study of o Where do you practice these virtues?  Courage  pleasure of saving your friends of mortal danger; EX: soldiering  Justice  about treating people fairly; EX: politics, by being a citizen  Wisdom  knowing the value of things; EX: learn it in study  Temperance  learn to treat them as they need to be treated; EX : learn this as a parent TUESDAY  Ethos – good ethics  You require virtues for the love of them  A person who loves virtue  to be virtuous o This person is more likely to do it; we are more likely to do what we love then do what we don’t love o If you are virtuous, you will do virtuous things o If you want your children to be virtuous, you’re going to teach them good habits, by demonstrating, model good behaviour, requi
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