He differentiates between genuine friendships and then two other forms based on pleasure, and common usefulness. Genuine friendship is something that will not dissolve, whereas the two other forms needs utility and pleasure to be involved in order to last. A genuine friendship takes place amongst two good men, “each wishes good for each other, and is also good themselves”. Aristotle continues to say, “And it is those who wish the good of their friends for the friends’ sake that are most truly friends, because each loves the other for what he is, and not for any incidental quality” (Aristotle 1976: 263). Genuine friendship is a type of virtue, or involves virtue, and it is very essential for a good life.
This is where the aspect of utility in friendship becomes a reality. Therefore, a complete friend falls into the categories of utility and pleasure. The difference is that they know how to balance the two and also reciprocate for their friends to get a similar share. The state factor in friendship is very important. The people who form the friendship can have a good or bad state.
Under Aristotle’s definition, the people you work with would be considered your friends, because you maintain a relationship based on your usefulness to one another. However, the relationship between coworkers rarely continues outside of work, and so cannot be considered friendship. Aristotle’s theory of three types of friendship is acceptable as a working definition of what friendship is, but the depth and complexity of emotion contained in friendship goes beyond his definition. Works Cited Aristotle. Nicomachean Ethics.
In Aristotle’s The Nicomachean Ethics, he explicates the basic principles of friendship. However, he does not only explain friendship between two people. Aristotle delves further into the topic and sheds light on “intrapersonal” friendship – friendship with oneself. Although this idea of comprehending the relationship people have with their own selves might seem intricate and hard to understand, Aristotle applies the same principles of interpersonal friendship to the kind of friendship people have with themselves. By distinguishing which type of friendship internal friendship belongs to, defining what a friend is, and attributing that definition to both good men and bad men, Aristotle relates friendship to self-love.
Although, some may not agree with Cicero and may even prefer Aristotle’s views that he has about friendship; if what he says is true then why on earth would you want someone to do something for you just because they can get something in return? It’s wrong! It simply amoral from my own point of view. I believe in doing well without looking for a reward in return. Life is much better that way.
Richard White's Friendship and Commitment In this paper, I will examine the duties of friendship. I will look at arguments in favor of the view that there are special moral duties involved in friendship, but will ultimately reject this view. I will then explain what role I see friendship having in morality even without these duties. In Richard White’s article “Friendship and Commitment”, White argues that friendship is an “inherently moral activity” (81). He argues that part of being a friend is having certain obligations, like being helpful or emotionally available.
Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics discusses virtue as a disposition to act in a manner that is a mean between excess and deficiency. In the following, friendship will be shown to be a virtue by explaining the different kinds of friendship. Beginning by understanding what a virtue is for Aristotle will show that friendship is a desirable state of character and help prove it is a virtue. By contemplating the value of friendship and it’s importance to the moral good of human action, the paper will show that friendship is a virtue. Reflecting upon these topics will finally point to the fact that friendship is a virtue.
These three types of friendships include: Utility, pleasure, and Goodness or virtuous friendship. Aristotle believes that friendship is something that is extremely important to have and should be held above many things. Friendship Utility is unlike the friendships of pleasure or goodness because as Aristotle puts it is “for the old” he explains that friendship Utility is a friendship that two people may have where they only communicate with one another for self-benefit or to gain something for one’s self. These two people are not likely to live with each other and at times may not even be nice to th... ... middle of paper ... ...ip and they lack what it takes for a real friendship to flourish. Aristotle talks about how “cities are built around friendships” and believe this to be so true because friendships can mature into such greater things.
Of course, it’s not always a good idea to judge friends in a detached way, or to doubt a friendship just because you can’t easily identify its rewards. The closest friends like each other for who they are in themselves, not for what they deliver. In fact, Aristotle made the point that it is better to give than to receive in friendship. Aristotle also believed that friendship can only arise indirectly, like happiness. It comes with living what he called a good life, including strong personal values such as honesty, character and passion.
In Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics, he distinguishes three types of friendships; utility, pleasure, and complete, of which corresponds to a particular type of good either coming from or residing in the friend. Aristotle states that friendships of utility and pleasure are defective, and that a complete friendship is the closest to perfection. Throughout all of the friendships each individual must be aware of the purpose of the relationship. In addition, friendship improves virtues such as modesty, and as a result enhances eudemonia. A utility friendship is defined by the fondness of one towards usefulness of their friend, and the action of giving usefulness in return.