Single Idea 5138

[catalogued under 23. Ethics / C. Virtue Theory / 4. External Goods / a. External goods]

Full Idea

It seems clear that happiness needs the addition of external goods, for it is difficult if not impossible to do fine deeds without any resources; many can only be done by the help of friends, or wealth, or political influence.

Gist of Idea

The fine deeds required for happiness need external resources, like friends or wealth


Aristotle (Nicomachean Ethics [c.334 BCE], 1099a32)

Book Reference

Aristotle: 'Ethics (Nicomachean)', ed/tr. ThomsonJ A K/TredennickH [Penguin 1976], p.79

A Reaction

One should ask what fine deeds can be done without external resources, and also what corruptions of virtue result from the pursuit of external goods (esp. political influence!). Aristotle wants to DO good, where Stoics want to BE good.