Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Summary: Aristotle / Nicomachean Ethics Book 8: Friendship

Aristotle - Ethics Book Eight - Friendship.

Friendship for Aristotle is a good virtue , and it is necessary for our lives. It binds citizens of the state together, as it is similar to unity. In a country where citizens are friends there is no need for justice.

In book 8 of Nicomachean Ethics Aristotle lists three types of friendships:

Beneficial friendship - liking each other because of the benefit they give each other - for what is good for themselves, and not for who they are.
Friendship for pleasure - for what pleases themselves.
According to Aristotle these are types of friendships which are random, temporary, and premature when there is a change in the situation. Friendship for pleasure is better than friendship for good. Because happy people do not need helpful friends, but pleasant ones do.

Perfect friendship - friendship of good and similar people in terms of good virtue. Liking each other in and of themselves. And just want to get on well with each other. This friendship is rare and eternal, which is built over time.
According to Aristotle, perfect friendship is the property of good people. And she's also a good friend. Perfect friendship is true, by choice and it helps to achieve happiness. Friendship for Aristotle is equality because of the desire to do good and show affection. It is impossible to be friends of a large number of people at the same time.

Those in power will choose for themselves friends who are helpful and friends who are pleasant, but not good people who are both, since a good virtue should be in a proper status, and those in power do not have a good virtue. Aristotle argues that equal friendship is not possible between people of different classes, but is based on right.

According to Aristotle the nature of equality in friendship is different from the nature of equality in justice. Rightly according to what a person deserves, and in friendship absolute equality. Love should be given and received according to the middle index, that is, the desire to learn a balance.

In every partnership there is justice and friendship. Aristotle believes that man avoids doing injustice to his friends and wants to do good to them. The political partnership was created out of benefit, with justice at the forefront of legislators' minds. In regimes, friendship involves the degree of justice that exists in the country. In proper regimes there is friendship to a degree that decreases according to the good of the regime. According to Aristotle in deviations from the proper regimes there is almost no friendship in existence, because there is really no justice. In a dictatorial regime there is no friendship between the ruler and his subjects, due to the inequality, and the action for the benefit of the dictator and not of the people, as in slavery and lordship. Relationship between ruler and controlled as body to mind. The degree of friendship in the country increases in relation to the nature of the regime.