Aristotle 's Views On Morality And Politics

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The Ancient-Modern debate focuses on the true definition of happiness and how one can fully attain it. It’s main principles encompass the following: The relationship between morality and politics, the purpose of politics, technical activity/necessary knowledge that one beholds, and human nature. According to the ancient view morality and virtue play the central role in ones conduct of their political and private affairs, and both Socrates’ and Boethius’ view is that in order to be an effective ruler one must be morally good; Plato believed that Philosophers were worthy rulers as well. While the modern view separates morality from politics and claims that there is no correlation between the two. Unlike Boethius, Machiavelli states that a person does not and should not be moral in order to be a ruler and if they are moral and righteous they will fail at being a successful leader. In The Consolation of Philosophy, Boethius’ notion of human nature is derived from “lady Philosophy”(not an actual/physical being) in his time of suffering and as a reminder. His perception of human nature is that: 1) we are all mortal, in other words, life is formulated with birth and death is eminent for every living being. 2) Humans are rational creatures and retain humanity and therefore should aim to be moral. 2) Reason is a special faculty, unique to only human beings that connects them to some truth about their own nature and essential concepts; these concepts are universal, timeless, and changeless. Also sensation, beauty, relationships, and possession all pass and die, they do not possess permanence. The only thing that remains with you is your reason. A grave philosophical error that is a source for supreme suffering for human beings is forg... ... middle of paper ... ...fluenced and manipulated to benefit a person is contrasting to Boethius’ view. Machiavelli believes that Lady Fortuna can be controlled and used for one’s needs. Unlike Boethius’ theory of Lady Fortuna having the ability to just spin the wheel, Machiavelli believes that she is in control of the wheel. Also instead of fortune seducing us with it’s false happiness, Machiavelli mentions that Lady Fortuna herself can be seduced to obtain what you please, in his case, glory. Machiavelli also has a modern perspective of nature itself, which is to exploit it for one’s own advantage. Machiavelli provides his readers with the analogy that fortune is a woman and desires to be chased by those that are willing and ambitious. While Boethius states that fortune gives out and takes back, Machiavelli counters his notion by saying that a human being should conquer what they please.
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