Of Aristotle’s Ethics, the passage that I enjoyed reading about most was the one on page 359 about the possession and use of virtue. The discussion begins with “IT matters quite a bit whether we suppose that the best good consists in possessing or in using, i.e., in a state or in an activity <that actualizes the state>. For while someone may be in a state that achieves no good, if, for instance, he is asleep or inactive in some other way, this cannot be true of the activity; for it will necessarily do actions and do well in them…. the fine and good people who act correctly win the prize.”
This passage explains which is more important, possessing a virtue or actually using it. The best is to actually use the virtue since if someone is just sitting their possessing a virtue, it doesn’t do any good. Its like having a vase for flower but not putting any flowers in it. The vase just sits there and is not used to its fullest potential.
The reason why this passage really caught my attention, is that I think it is very applicable in our own lives. I think there’s a bigger meaning behind it. For me, this passage conveyed to me, that we all have virtues in us, but we need to start activating them more. For all we know, one of us in this very room could be the next Nobel Prize Winner, or set a new record, be the best at what their future job is, etc. There are so many opportunities for all of us. I think we need to realize what we are all good at, or have virtues for, and start acting on them. We need to use the talents we possess.