During chapter three of book two of Aristotle’s Ethics, he looks at what virtue of character is concerned with. After much discussion, it is determined that this kind of virtue deals primarily with pleasures and pains. This would coincide with my beliefs as character deals with both the bad and the good.
Aristotle goes on to provide several reasons as to why virtue of character is concerned with pleasures and pains. One reason is that pleasure causes us to do base actions and pain to not take part in the fine actions. This would mean that we as children would get a full rounded education growing up. He also states that every action we will ever do implies some kind of pleasure or pain so this would then mean that the virtue of character would have to do the same. The soul’s state is affected by whatever bad or good action we choose, so depending on the action it either brings it happiness or agony.
This claim caught my attention as it almost stated something very basic, but at the same time can appear so complex. Of course every action is going to bring either a positive or negative reaction, yet we do not stop to think why this is the case. With Aristotle’s theory we can say that this is in pursuit of excellence of character. This virtue is one that is going to take a lot of time to develop as no one can become excellent with their character in one day. It takes many years to accomplish this goal. In a way, this claim reaffirmed my belief that every action we choose is because of the potential gain or loss as a result.