Analysis Of Nicomachean Ethics By Aristotle

1601 Words7 Pages
Jeremiah W. McCarthy
Prof. Hernandez
POSI 3332-002
October 20, 2015
Nicomachean Ethics Justice is the major issue of discussion in Nicomachean Ethics by Aristotle. Justice according to Aristotle means fairness or lawfulness. Laws help people behave virtuously. As a result, a just person who is defined as lawful by law is virtuous. However, virtue and justice are not the same. While virtue deals with a person’s moral state, justice deals with a person’s relation to other people. Justice can be divided into universal and particular justice. While universal justice refers to the state of an individual who is generally fair and lawful, particular justice is the pursuit of one’s personal gains such as honor, safety, and money resulting to loss
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However, there are times in which even though guiding the lives of people, legal justice can contradict natural justice. A good example is when the legal law in place allows a seller to sell his products at excessively high prices or a lender to collect more interest. This makes such agreements to be against nature and according to Aristotle, they should be prohibited. For Aristotle, the law makers should try as much as possible to align polis into a natural condition by using the correct constitution and laws (Aristotle and Reeve 265).
In the most appropriate polis, there are two peaks of ethical virtues that exist. These are the greatness of soul and universal or general justice. Aristotle argues that these two virtues include all other virtues. However, the two are in different as well. Greatness of soul is the aspect of complete ethical virtue that results to complete perfection of a person in himself. On the other hand, justice is the aspect of complete ethical virtue that is based on the perfection of a person in relation to other people as ordered in the political community (Aristotle and Reeve

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