The golden mean | ethic in a pandemic world

 

Chapter 8 speaks to Aristotle’s philosophy as including a “mean between extremes” (p. 158). Remember mathematically, the mean refers to the middle or halfway point of a range of numbers. Aristotle’s oft overlooked and terribly underappreciated point of the Golden Mean may indeed be a guide to the near paradoxical (contradictory) aspects of the ethical dilemmas found in the Pandemic World.

According to Aristotle’s Ethical Doctrine of the Mean, when ethical values are projected well, they are able to strike a balance, making them advantageous.

Aristotle noted that, in nature, most things tended toward the mean (middle). Trees of a type grew to approximately the same size, as did species. Predatory animals kill just enough to survive and raise their young. Prey animals do not overpopulate an area’s ability to survive their grazing. Remember the word “ecosystem” from grade school? Ecosystems maintain a healthy balance by finding a middle road.

Perhaps people can as well.

Aristotle’s Concept of the Golden Mean

Deficiency (-)

BALANCE

Excess (+)

cowardice

stinginess/miserliness

sloth

humility

secrecy

moroseness

quarrelsomeness

self-indulgence

apathy

indecisiveness

COURAGE

GENEROSITY

AMBITION

MODESTY

HONESTY

GOOD HUMOR

FRIENDSHIP

TEMPERANCE

COMPOSURE

SELF CONTROL

rashness

extravagance

greed

pride

loquacity

absurdity

flattery

insensibility

irritability

impulsiveness

Determine your Golden Mean.

Include the following aspects in the assignment:

·  Create a simple chart as shown above

·  Develop a list of five characteristics that you feel fall into the deficiency or excess columns

·  Find your balance trait

·  Briefly, write how you may develop your balance trait

·  Use synonym and antonym lists to assist you. Try to avoid those listed. Consider first which traits you think are faults and work from there

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