Aristotle on Friendship: “Nicomachean Ethics

What is the value of friendship?

In the reading Aristotle’s main point is that friendship is a virtue meaning that friendship is a quality considered morally good desirable in a person. Aristotle then mentions, “ For without friends no one would choose to live.” (1.1.). I disagree with his statement because people can live good successful lives without friends.

Aristotle breaks down friendship into three types which are: utility, pleasure, and virtuous. A utility friendship is the use of a friendship in a beneficial way. An example would be: Bob is helping me study for my chemistry test so I can pass. The next friendship is pleasure. The pleasure friendship is the type of friendship that a person would be using the person to feel good leaving the other reciprocates with nothing. An example would be: I’m asking Bob to go to a party with me but Bob has a lot of homework and I tell Bob “You’re always doing homework take a day off and have some fun.” The only person that is benefiting would be me and not Bob. The last type of friendship is the virtuous friendship. Aristotle claims that this is the best type of friendship. An example of this would be: Bob helps me with my chemistry homework and in return I help him with his math homework. This friendship is the reciprocal friendship. “I scratch your back, you scratch my back.”

In reading Aristotle’s beliefs on friendship and the different categories of it, I come to realize that the virtuous friendship is the most desirable friendship. It is the friendship that is both beneficial for both people. A quote that I found interesting that suits this is ”A perfect friendship is the friendship of men who are good, and alike in virtue for these wish well alike to each other good, and they are good themselves.” (3.1.) I think this quote best suits it because within the best friendship both participants have a lot of commonalities and are good to each other. 

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2 thoughts on “Aristotle on Friendship: “Nicomachean Ethics

  1. Pingback: Thank you | Unspeakable

  2. Friendship is very important to everyone and it is basically a sense of connection with someone. There is a lot things friendship should be accounted for. A friend should always support you and not use you as a sense of pleasure.

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