Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Taking Stock of the Good Life


How time flies by--here we are 8 weeks into the class! What a great time it has been! And, I wonder, are we any closer to determining what it means to live "the good life"? We definitely have had some great discussions while exploring this question. Along the way every person in class has offered up some potential clues to the solution of our problem. Class members have argued for the importance of friendship, family, education, virtues (such as bravery, loyalty, and honesty), forgiveness, pleasure, money....(the list goes on).

So, it is safe to say that we are all deep into the philosophical question of the good life. What I want to do now, then, is take some time to reflect on the different philosophers we have read and their answers to this question. Specifically, which philosopher's idea of the good life do you agree with most and why? For example, Aristotle locates the good life in happiness coming from virtuous actions; Ayn Rand locates the good life in pursuing one's own rational self-interest, or, being "selfish"; John Stuart Mill locates the good life in the Greatest-happiness principle--we are living a good life for him if we are promoting pleasure and preventing pain for the majority of people in our society. Our job is to reflect on these different answers to our question and try to determine which works best.

20 comments:

  1. I agree with Aristotle all the way. Hands Down.

    Ayn Rand's being selfish, and persuing only one's interst could never be right.

    Yes first to comment In yo face Tia

    peace out and never walk in fear

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  2. i agree with aristotle because i think you are happy thru virtuist things. when you friends are close to you it makes you feel wanted and you are then happy. so aristotle has my vote on what a good life is

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  3. I agree with Aristotle on his views of the good life. The good life consist of being virtuous and not altruistic. One must look for the well being of him/herself as well as others. I believe Aristotle knew what the good life was and enjoyed it himself.

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  4. Aristotle because he actually breaks down what a good life is and plus there are several points in which i agreed with him. However with the other philosophers i disagreed a lot..

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  5. Nakia Brunson-I fully agree with Aristotle with no doubt in my mind. I strongly agree with him when he says that it determines how just or unjust one has lived their life to see if their life was a good or life or not.

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  6. I agree With Ayn Rand because I relate alot to how she explains what a good life is. I have done things on my own for quite a while. being selfish benefits me more than sharing because it makes me happy. I don't have to ask anyone one for much because I know how to get it on my own. With me being selfish, I don't have to worry about having to share with those who don't need "it" as bad as I do. I believe that being interested in yourself is important. It helps you to become independent. If no one can make you happy, at least you can make yourself happy.

    K. Martin

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  7. I agree with Aristotle completely because his idea of a good life follows my way of living now. Ayn Rand's selfish principles are to overrated and does involve helping someone else for them and not for yourself. Mill's view is to open. He does not belive in being selfish sometimes. How can you help some one else and you are not ok or you cannot help yourself



    JaQuisha Gray

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  8. I really agree with Aristotle's point of view. In the Nicomachean Ethics book he describes being virtuous as a part of the good life. To truly be a virtuous person the actions are done knowingly and not because they are forced to do such actions.

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  9. i agree with aristotle, because i beleive that a good life is being a virtuist person and having someone to bring pleasure to you as friends or as a couple.the good life is being happy and having pleasure.

    rondarius johnson

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  10. I agree with Ayn Rand; being selfish to better one's self isn't so selfish to me.Often times thats how one gets ahead in life. Not ony that but your intentions on being selfish also makes a difference.
    You only are given one life so live it to the best of your ability and control the things in which you are capable of!

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  11. I agree with Aristotle. In order to live a good life you must do the right actions within reasoning.

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  12. i agree with Aristotle's way of a good life, becasue i don't think being selfish is having a good life, i don't think getting credit for something or useing someone is apart of a good life, all of those things don't always turn out the way you want them to turn out. This is why i really agree with Aristotle i think i live by his way of a good life

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  13. I AGREE WITH ARISTOTLE AND I DISAGREE WITHAYN RAND BECAUSE SHE IS BEINF VERY SELFISH. ONE DOES NEED VIRTUOUS THINGS TO HAVE A GOOD LIFE AND TO BENEFIT FROM OTHERS AND ONLY WORRY ABOUT YOUSELF IS NOT RIGHT.

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  14. I AGREE WITH ARISTOTLE AND ALSO DISAGREE WITH AYN RAND BECAUSE SHE IS VERY SELFISH

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  15. I AGREE WITH ARISTOLE ON HIS VIEW OF THE GOOD LIFE. THE GOOD IS BEING VIRTOUS. ONE MUST TAKE IN THIS WORD OF ARISTOTLE AND BELIEVE IN IT.

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  16. I agree with all the philosophers. They are neither really wrong or right.You can have a good life whatever way you choose to have.Autumn

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  17. I agree with john stewart mill and aristotle but i do not agree with ayn rand. I agree with them simply because i act in the ways in which they approve, but ayn rand is just a little too selfish for me.

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  18. I agree with aristotle because he if truly living a virtuous life through a good virtuous character. Ayn Rand is selfish and only looking for some thing to please herself.

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