According to Aristotle, how is it that being a good person will also lead to happiness?

Essay by hot_dranUniversity, Bachelor'sA, December 2003

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"Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony."

- Mahatma Gandhi


"Happiness depends upon ourselves."

- Aristotle

In Nichomachean Ethics, Aristotle argues the highest end is the human good, and claims that the highest end pursued in action is happiness. Also, Aristotle claims that happiness is achieved only by living a virtuous life - "our definition is in harmony with those who say that happiness is virtue, or a particular virtue; because an activity in accordance with virtue implies virtue. Indeed, we may go further and assert that anyone who does not delight in fine actions is not even a good man." The virtuous life is full of reasoning for the good. Good is complete and most choice worthy. It is the human good that expresses virtue.

I agree with Aristotle in his theory that our use of reason is good for us because happiness is the ultimate end and reason is the only way of attaining this happiness.

Happiness is an important aspect of Aristotle's philosophy because for him it was an activity of the soul which attained a high level of excellence cultivated over the span of a complete life that accords with virtue. The notion of virtue for Aristotle was anything that makes something good. The good is the result of what someone rationally aims for. If someone performs a job or a task that it is meant to do and does it well then it has good virtue. It is precisely the ability to use reason that sets humans apart from the other animals. According to Aristotle, human virtue means virtue of the soul and not the body, just like human happiness means happiness of the soul. Virtue of humans also will be the...