Divine and human happiness in nicomachean ethics

Philosophical Review 117 (1):49-75 (2008)
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Abstract

presents a puzzle as to whether Aristotle views morally virtuous activity as happiness, as book 1 seems to indicate, or philosophical contemplation as happiness, as book 10 seems to indicate. The most influential attempts to resolve this issue have been either monistic or inclusivist. According to the monists, happiness consists exclusively of contemplation. According to the inclusivists, contemplation is one constituent of happiness, but morally virtuous activity is another. In this essay I will examine influential defenses of monism. Finding these accounts superior to inclusivism, but still deficient, I will present and defend a dualistic account of happiness in which two different types of happiness, one divine and one human, are present in Nicomachean Ethics. When Aristotle commends contemplation as a happiness that humans can attain, he is careful to specify that this activity corresponds to a capacity (nous) that is not, properly speaking, human, even though humans can exercise it. Contemplation, the divine good, is the highest good that humans can obtain, but it is not the characteristic human good. The characteristic human good corresponds to the specifically and merely human function, which is an activity of the compound of human reason and emotions.

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Citations of this work

Aristotle on Divine and Human Contemplation.Bryan Reece - 2020 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 7:131–160.
Complete Virtue and the Definition of Happiness in Aristotle.Xinkai Hu - 2020 - Frontiers of Philosophy in China 15 (2):293-314.
Intelecto agente, motor inmóvil y Dios en Aristóteles.René Farieta - 2019 - Areté. Revista de Filosofía 31 (1):35-76.

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References found in this work

Aristotle on the Human Good.Richard Kraut - 1989 - Princeton University Press.
Aristotle on Eudaimonia.J. L. Ackrill - 1980 - In Amélie Rorty (ed.), Essays on Aristotle’s Ethics. University of California Press. pp. 15-34.
Aristotle on eudaimonia.J. L. Ackrill - 1975 - London: Oxford University Press.
Aristotle’s Ethical Theory.William Francis Ross Hardie - 1968 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press.
Aristotle on the Human Good.Richard KRAUT - 1989 - Ethics 101 (2):382-391.

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