Our discussion throughout the last week has largely been based in selections from Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics. Specifically, we spent time discussing "actions" and how these define a person, or, make a person who he/she is. Taurean raised a great question about forgiveness--Is it possible to forgive actions while still "keeping them in mind" or do we need to "forget" that the action in question ever took place? We also discussed Stanley "Tookie" Williams and his actions, both as a founder of the Crips and as an author/activist working against gang violence in the United States. This raised questions about the possibility of one to be forgiven or "redeemed" for any act, even murder or assault.
But consider the following passage from the Nicomachean Ethics: "we become just by doing just actions, temperate by doing temperate actions, brave by doing brave actions" (1103b). Here Aristotle is putting an emphasis on action as defining "what" or "who" a person is (How do I know if I am brave? If I act bravely I am brave). Now that we have thought about this in class--what do you think? What is most important in defining "what" or "who" a person is? Their actions? Or, perhaps the intentions that guide actions are more significant? Perhaps neither of these is right and we need to look at another aspect of a person to define "who" or "what" they are?