Meno’s third definition: Virtue is the desire to have and the ability to acquire fine and beautiful things. Socrates’ response: Everyone desires what they think is good (an idea one encounters in many of Plato’s dialogues).
What is virtue according to Nicomachean Ethics? what is virtue according to aristotle.

How does Meno first define virtue?

Meno first attempts to define virtue by specifying its different types–that of a man, a wife, and so on. Socrates replies that merely specifying these different types does not tell us what virtue itself is. … To illustrate the kind of definition he is seeking, Socrates discusses the analogies of shape and color.

What does Socrates say about virtue in Meno?

Socrates remarks that Meno makes many out of one, like somebody who breaks a plate. Meno proposes that virtue is the desire for good things and the power to get them. Socrates points out that this raises a second problem—many people do not recognize evil.

What is virtue and can it be taught Meno?

Socrates proposes the following hypothesis: if virtue is a kind of knowledge, then it can be taught (and if it is not, it cannot). The next point to consider, then, is whether or not virtue is a kind of knowledge.

Where does Socrates define virtue?

Based upon first-hand knowledge of the Greek texts, my thesis is as follows: man’s virtue, according to Socrates, is wisdom (skill or knowledge-how) to act effectively or correctly in a given situ- ation, grounded in and based upon absolutely certain knowledge (intellec- tual knowledge-that) .

What are the three definitions of virtue?

Meno provides three definitions for virtue during the course of the dialogue: (1) He lists instances of virtuous conduct for men, women, children and so on. … (2) The ability to rule over people is the virtue common to all [73d]. (3) Virtue is to desire beautiful things and have the power to acquire them [77b].

What is the Meno paradox?

An Objection to Inquiry The argument known as “Meno’s Paradox” can be reformulated as follows: If you know what you’re looking for, inquiry is unnecessary. If you don’t know what you’re looking for, inquiry is impossible. Therefore, inquiry is either unnecessary or impossible.

What definitions of virtue does Meno offer and why does Socrates reject each one?

Socrates again rejects the definition that Meno offers on the basis that virtue remains the same in all human beings whether their role is to rule over others, as in the case of masters, or to obey others, as in the case of children and slaves. … He gives Meno definitions of shape (76a) and color (76d).

What is Plato's definition of virtue?

Like most other ancient philosophers, Plato maintains a virtue-based eudaemonistic conception of ethics. That is to say, happiness or well-being (eudaimonia) is the highest aim of moral thought and conduct, and the virtues (aretê: ‘excellence’) are the requisite skills and dispositions needed to attain it.

Who is Anytus in Meno?

Anytus is Meno’s guest when he comes to Athens, and is even present for part of Meno’s discussion with Socrates about the nature of virtue. At one point, Socrates calls Anytus forth and asks him if he can identify a person who teaches virtue.

How is virtue taught?

Moral virtue is learned by repetition; intellec- tual virtue can be taught and is the appropriate concern of the schools. Moral virtue is acquired, if it is acquired at all, at a very early age.

What does virtue mean in philosophy?

A virtue is thought to be a good character trait. … Aristotle thought you had to act for good ends in order to be virtuous. Virtue ethicists think that there is no need for moral rules. Driver thinks that virtues are character traits that result in good consequences, which is a unique position.

Is virtue inborn or acquired?

Virtues are acquired character traits; they are not inborn or learned through reason. Unlike intellectual or physical characteristics, moral virtues are habits we acquire by practicing them and emulating exceptionally virtuous people or especially virtuous actions.

Where does Plato talk about virtue?

Plato provides his account of virtue in two different works, the Protagoras and the Republic. In the Protagoras Plato, through Socrates, argues that virtue is knowledge. The argument begins with the premise that everyone wants what he or she believes to be good.

Is virtue knowledge Plato?

He suggests that virtue is a kind of knowledge, similar to the expertise involved in a craft; and he suggests that the five virtues (wisdom, temperance, courage, justice and piety) form a unity. …

Can virtue be taught according to Plato?

Plato presents Socrates’ views on the question whether virtue is knowledge and whether it can be taught in several dialogues, most notably in Meno. In this dialogue, Socrates makes many different arguments on the subject of virtue. … Plato’s answer is that virtue cannot be taught.

Is Meno a person?

Meno, a prominent Thessalian who is visiting Athens, is a member of this class. Meno’s semi-foreign status aids Socrates (and Plato) in the dialogue, allowing for eyewitness accounts that Socrates himself could not give.

Why are the virtues important?

Virtues are important because they are the basic qualities necessary for our well being and happiness. By recognizing the importance of virtues, in our lives, it will lead to better communication, understanding and acceptance between us and our fellow man.

What are the 3 most important virtues?

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. Because of this reference, a group of seven attributes is sometimes listed by adding the four cardinal virtues (prudence, temperance, fortitude, justice) and three theological virtues (faith, hope, charity).

Who taught Meno?

He was a student of Socrates and later taught Aristotle. He founded the Academy, an academic program which many consider to be the first Western university. Plato wrote many philosophical texts—at least 25. He dedicated his life to learning and teaching and is hailed as one of the founders of Western philosophy.

Is Meno a philosopher?

Dramatic Setting. The Meno is a philosophical fiction, based on real people who took part in important historical events. Plato wrote it probably about 385 B.C.E., and placed it dramatically in 402 B.C.E.

What kind of question is Meno asking?

The Meno is probably one of Plato’s earliest dialogues, with the conversation dateable to about 402 BCE. The dialogue begins with Meno asking Socrates whether virtue can be taught, and this question (along with the more fundamental question of what virtue is) occupies the two men for the entirety of the text.

What is virtue according to Aristotle?

Aristotle explains what virtues are in some detail. They are dispositions to choose good actions and passions, informed by moral knowledge of several sorts, and motivated both by a desire for characteristic goods and by a desire to perform virtuous acts for their own sake.

How does Aristotle define virtue?

Aristotle defines moral virtue as a disposition to behave in the right manner and as a mean between extremes of deficiency and excess, which are vices. We learn moral virtue primarily through habit and practice rather than through reasoning and instruction.

What does the virtue unity mean?

virtues form a unity only in the sense that someone who possesses any. one of the individual virtues must possess each the others as well. Other commentators have argued that Socrates believes that the individual virtues form a unity in the much stronger sense that they are really one and the same thing.

Was Aristotle a sophist?

As a paid tutor to Alexander the Great, Aristotle could be accused of being a sophist. … However, despite the opposition from philosophers Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, it is clear that sophists had a vast influence on a number of spheres, including the growth of knowledge and on ethical-political theory.

Why does Anytus hate Socrates?

Meletus’ motivation in bringing charges against Socrates is a matter of considerable debate. It may have sprung either from his religious fanaticism or his anger over Socrates’s association with the Thirty Tyrants. It is also possible that he was to some degree upset with the low opinion of Socrates for poets.

Was Critias a Spartan general?

Critias, son of Callaeschrus, an Athenian philosopher, rhetorician, poet, historian, and political leader, was best known for his leading role in the pro-Spartan government of the Thirty (404-403 BC).

Are we born with virtue?

Our character traits can be good, bad or somewhere in between. They can be admirable or not. The admirable character traits, the marks of perfection in character, are called virtues, their opposites are vices. … Character traits are not innate–we were not born with them.

Where do we learn virtue?

How does a person develop virtues? Virtues are developed through learning and through practice. As the ancient philosopher Aristotle suggested, a person can improve his or her character by practicing self-discipline, while a good character can be corrupted by repeated self-indulgence.

Are virtues teachable?

Therefore, Socrates says, since some of the most virtuous gentlemen of Athens failed to teach their children virtue, “virtue can certainly not be taught” (94e). … Therefore, since virtue cannot be taught, it cannot be a kind of knowledge since knowledge is teachable.

What is the meaning of virtue in physics?

Virtue means with respect or with reference of. Examples: By virtue of speed means due to speed. potential energy possessed by a body by virtue of its configuration is known as elastic potential energy.

What is the greatest virtue?

The dictionary defines kindness as ‘the virtue of showing love’ and the qualities of having a sympathetic, affectionate, warmhearted and considerate nature.

Is virtue theory normative?

Virtue ethics is currently one of three major approaches in normative ethics. It may, initially, be identified as the one that emphasizes the virtues, or moral character, in contrast to the approach that emphasizes duties or rules (deontology) or that emphasizes the consequences of actions (consequentialism).

How is virtue ethics vague?

Some argue virtue ethics is overly vague in guiding actions. They say its principles aren’t specific enough to help us overcome difficult ethical conundrums. … A virtue ethicist might refuse to do what will benefit the most people if it doesn’t position them as the good guy.

Can virtues be relative to culture and time?

There’s very little in human societies that isn’t relative to their time, place, and prevailing circumstances. Eternal virtues, then, would be relative to eternal or near-eternal (immutable) conditions of human existence.

Is justice a virtue Aristotle?

Since virtue can be said to be a specific individual character, Aristotle also defines the virtue of justice as the character of justice, with which citizens act justly and desire to do what is just.

Is justice a virtue?

Justice is one of the four cardinal virtues in classical European philosophy and Roman Catholicism. … It is a cardinal virtue, which is to say that it is “pivotal”, because it regulates all such relationships, and is sometimes deemed the most important of the cardinal virtues.

How is virtue described according to Socrates in Plato's The Republic?

In books II and Iv of Plato’s Republic, Socrates introduces and describes the four chief virtues needed for justice to thrive in a polis He presents them as Courage, Moderation, Justice and Wisdom. … Courage, the first of the virtues, is arguably in decline.