THE GOOD FOR MAN
Subject Matter and End of Moral Philosophy: Diversity of Ends
Chapter 1 PRELIMINARY NOTIONS I. FIRST ARISTOTLE SHOWS WHAT HE INTENDS TO DO. — 1 to 7 A. He presents in advance certain things necessary to explain his intention. 1. HE SHOWS HOW IT IS NECESSARY TO START WITH THE END. a. He states... that all human things are ordered to an end. i. He states his intention. — 8 πᾶσα τέχνη καὶ πᾶσα μέθοδος, ὁμοίως δὲ πρᾶξίς τε καὶ προαίρεσις, ἀγαθοῦ τινὸς ἐφίεσθαι δοκεῖ· All arts and all teaching, and similarly every act and every choice seem to have the attainment of some good as their object. — ii. He explains his purpose. — 9-10 διὸ καλῶς ἀπεφήναντο τἀγαθόν, οὗ πάντ' ἐφίεται. For this reason it has correctly been proclaimed that good is what all desire. b. He shows that there can be a number of ends. — 12-13 διαφορὰ δέ τις φαίνεται τῶν τελῶν· τὰ μὲν γάρ εἰσιν ἐνέργειαι, τὰ δὲ παρ' αὐτὰς ἔργα τινά. Now a certain diversity of ends is apparent, for some are operations while others are works outside the operations. c. He makes a comparison among ends. — 14 ὧν δ' εἰσὶ τέλη τινὰ παρὰ τὰς πράξεις, ἐν τούτοις βελτίω πέφυκε τῶν ἐνεργειῶν τὰ ἔργα. If the ends are works then the works are better than the operations. 2. HE COMPARES HABITS AND ACTS WITH THE END. a. He shows that different things are ordered to different ends. — 15 πολλῶν δὲ πράξεων οὐσῶν καὶ τεχνῶν καὶ ἐπιστημῶν πολλὰ γίνεται καὶ τὰ τέλη· ἰατρικῆς μὲν γὰρ ὑγίεια, ναυπηγικῆς δὲ πλοῖον, στρατηγικῆς δὲ νίκη, οἰκονομικῆς δὲ πλοῦτος. Since there are many operations and arts and sciences there must also be different ends for each of them. Thus the end of medical art is health; of shipbuilding, navigation; of strategy, victory; of domestic economy, riches. b. He arranges the order of habits among themselves. — 16 ὅσαι δ' εἰσὶ τῶν τοιούτων ὑπὸ μίαν τινὰ δύναμιν, καθάπερ ὑπὸ τὴν ἱππικὴν χαλινοποιικὴ καὶ ὅσαι ἄλλαι τῶν ἱππικῶν ὀργάνων εἰσίν, αὕτη δὲ καὶ πᾶσα πολεμικὴ πρᾶξις ὑπὸ τὴν στρατηγικήν, κατὰ τὸν αὐτὸν δὴ τρόπον ἄλλαι ὑφ' ἑτέρας· In all such skills a subordination of one to another is found. For instance, the art of bridle-making is subordinated to the art of riding as also are the arts which make riding equipment. The art of riding in turn, and all military operations, come under strategy. In a similar way other arts are subordinated to still others. c. He lays down the order of ends. — 17 ἐν ἁπάσαις δὲ τὰ τῶν ἀρχιτεκτονικῶν τέλη πάντων ἐστὶν αἱρετώτερα τῶν ὑπ' αὐτά· τούτων γὰρ χάριν κἀκεῖνα διώκεται. It follows then that in all these, architectonic ends are more desirable than the ends subordinated to them. The reason is that men seek the latter for the sake of the former. d. He shows that it makes no difference whether the end is a product or an operation. — 18 διαφέρει δ' οὐδὲν τὰς ἐνεργείας αὐτὰς εἶναι τὰ τέλη τῶν πράξεων ἢ παρὰ ταύτας ἄλλο τι, καθάπερ ἐπὶ τῶν λεχθεισῶν ἐπιστημῶν. It does not matter whether the ends are operations themselves or something other than the operations as in the skills mentioned above.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Sicut philosophus dicit in principio metaphysicae, sapientis est ordinare. Cuius ratio est, quia sapientia est potissima perfectio rationis, cuius proprium est cognoscere ordinem. Nam etsi vires sensitivae cognoscant res aliquas absolute, ordinem tamen unius rei ad aliam cognoscere est solius intellectus aut rationis. Invenitur autem duplex ordo in rebus. Unus quidem partium alicuius totius seu alicuius multitudinis adinvicem, sicut partes domus ad invicem ordinantur; alius autem est ordo rerum in finem. Et hic ordo est principalior, quam primus. Nam, ut philosophus dicit in XI metaphysicae, ordo partium exercitus adinvicem, est propter ordinem totius exercitus ad ducem. Ordo autem quadrupliciter ad rationem comparatur. Est enim quidam ordo quem ratio non facit, sed solum considerat, sicut est ordo rerum naturalium. Alius autem est ordo, quem ratio considerando facit in proprio actu, puta cum ordinat conceptus suos adinvicem, et signa conceptuum, quae sunt voces significativae; tertius autem est ordo quem ratio considerando facit in operationibus voluntatis. Quartus autem est ordo quem ratio considerando facit in exterioribus rebus, quarum ipsa est causa, sicut in arca et domo. 1. As the Philosopher says in the beginning of the Metaphysics (Bk. 1, Ch. 2, 982 a 18; St. Th. 2, 41-42), it is the business of the wise man to order. The reason for this is that wisdom is the most powerful perfection of reason whose characteristic is to know order. Even if the sensitive powers know some things absolutely, nevertheless to know the order of one thing to another is exclusively the work of intellect or reason. Now a twofold order is found in things. One kind is that of parts of a totality, that is, a group, among themselves, as the parts of a house are mutually ordered to each other. The second order is that of things to an end. This order is of greater importance than the first. For, as the Philosopher says in the eleventh book of the Metaphysics (Bk. XII, Ch. 10, 1075 a 15; St. Th. Bk. XII, Lect. 12, 2629-2631), the order of the parts of an army among themselves exists because of the order of the whole army to the commander. Now order is related to reason in a fourfold way. There is one order that reason does not establish but only beholds, such is the order of things in nature. There is a second order that reason establishes in its own act of consideration, for example, when it arranges its concepts among themselves, and the signs of concept as well, because words express the meanings of the concepts. There is a third order that reason in deliberating establishes in the operations of the will. There is a fourth order that reason in planning establishes in the external things which it causes, such as a chest and a house. Et quia consideratio rationis per habitum scientiae perficitur, secundum hos diversos ordines quos proprie ratio considerat, sunt diversae scientiae. Nam ad philosophiam naturalem pertinet considerare ordinem rerum quem ratio humana considerat sed non facit; ita quod sub naturali philosophia comprehendamus et mathematicam et metaphysicam. Ordo autem quem ratio considerando facit in proprio actu, pertinet ad rationalem philosophiam, cuius est considerare ordinem partium orationis adinvicem, et ordinem principiorum in conclusiones; ordo autem actionum voluntariarum pertinet ad considerationem moralis philosophiae. Ordo autem quem ratio considerando facit in rebus exterioribus constitutis per rationem humanam, pertinet ad artes mechanicas. 2. Because the operation of reason is perfected by habit, according to the different modes of order that reason considers in particular, a differentiation of sciences arises. The function of natural philosophy is to consider the order of things that human reason considers but does not establish—understand that with natural philosophy here we also include metaphysics. The order that reason makes in its own act of consideration pertains to rational philosophy (logic), which properly considers the order of the parts of verbal expression with one another and the order of principles to one another and to their conclusions. The order of voluntary actions pertains to the consideration of moral philosophy. The order that reason in planning establishes in external things arranged by human reason pertains to the mechanical arts. Sic igitur moralis philosophiae, circa quam versatur praesens intentio, proprium est considerare operationes humanas, secundum quod sunt ordinatae adinvicem et ad finem. Accordingly it is proper to moral philosophy, to which our attention is at present directed, to consider human operations insofar as they are ordered one another and to an end. Dico autem operationes humanas, quae procedunt a voluntate hominis secundum ordinem rationis. Nam si quae operationes in homine inveniuntur, quae non subiacent voluntati et rationi, non dicuntur proprie humanae, sed naturales, sicut patet de operationibus animae vegetabilis, quae nullo modo cadunt sub consideratione moralis philosophiae. Sicut igitur subiectum philosophiae naturalis est motus, vel res mobilis, ita etiam subiectum moralis philosophiae est operatio humana ordinata in finem, vel etiam homo prout est voluntarie agens propter finem. 3. I am talking about human operations, those springing from man’s will following the order of reason. But if some operations are found in man that are not subject to the will and reason, they are not properly called human but natural, as, clearly appears in operations of the vegetative soul. These in no way fall under the consideration of moral philosophy. As the subject of natural philosophy is motion, or mobile being, so the subject of moral philosophy is human action ordered to an end, or even man, as he is an agent voluntarily acting for an end. Sciendum est autem, quod quia homo naturaliter est animal sociale, utpote qui indiget ad suam vitam multis, quae sibi ipse solus praeparare non potest; consequens est, quod homo naturaliter sit pars alicuius multitudinis, per quam praestetur sibi auxilium ad bene vivendum. Quo quidem auxilio indiget ad duo. Primo quidem ad ea quae sunt vitae necessaria, sine quibus praesens vita transigi non potest: et ad hoc auxiliatur homini domestica multitudo, cuius est pars. Nam quilibet homo a parentibus habet generationem et nutrimentum et disciplinam et similiter etiam singuli, qui sunt partes domesticae familiae, seinvicem iuvant ad necessaria vitae. Alio modo iuvatur homo a multitudine, cuius est pars, ad vitae sufficientiam perfectam; scilicet ut homo non solum vivat, sed et bene vivat, habens omnia quae sibi sufficiunt ad vitam: et sic homini auxiliatur multitudo civilis, cuius ipse est pars, non solum quantum ad corporalia, prout scilicet in civitate sunt multa artificia, ad quae una domus sufficere non potest, sed etiam quantum ad moralia; inquantum scilicet per publicam potestatem coercentur insolentes iuvenes metu poenae, quos paterna monitio corrigere non valet. 4. It must be understood that, because man is by nature a social animal, needing many things to live which he cannot get for himself if alone, he naturally is a part of a group that furnishes him help to live well. He needs this help for two reasons. First, to have what is necessary for life, without which he cannot live the present life; an for this, man is helped by the domestic group of which he is a part. For every man is indebted to his parents for his generation and his nourishment and instruction. Likewise individuals, who are members of the family, help one another to procure the necessities of life. In another way, man receives help from the group of which he is a part, to have a perfect sufficiency for life; namely, that man may not only live but live well, having everything sufficient for living; and in this way man is helped by the civic group, of which he is a member, not only in regard to bodily needs—as certainly in the state there are many crafts which a single household cannot provide—but also in regard to right conduct, inasmuch as public authority restrains with fear of punishment delinquent young men whom paternal admonition is not able to correct. Sciendum est autem, quod hoc totum, quod est civilis multitudo, vel domestica familia habet solam ordinis unitatem, secundum quam non est aliquid simpliciter unum; et ideo pars huius totius potest habere operationem, quae non est operatio totius, sicut miles in exercitu habet operationem quae non est totius exercitus. Habet nihilominus et ipsum totum aliquam operationem, quae non est propria alicuius partium, sed totius, puta conflictus totius exercitus. Et tractus navis est operatio multitudinis trahentium navem. Est autem aliud totum quod habet unitatem non solum ordine, sed compositione, aut colligatione, vel etiam continuitate, secundum quam unitatem est aliquid unum simpliciter; et ideo nulla est operatio partis, quae non sit totius. In continuis enim idem est motus totius et partis; et similiter in compositis, vel colligatis, operatio partis principaliter est totius; et ideo oportet, quod ad eamdem scientiam pertineat consideratio talis totius et partis eius. Non autem ad eamdem scientiam pertinet considerare totum quod habet solam ordinis unitatem, et partes ipsius. 5. It must be known moreover that the whole which the political group or the family constitutes has only a unity of order, for it is not something absolutely one. A part of this whole, therefore, can have an operation that is not the operation of the whole, as a soldier in an army has an activity that does not belong to the whole army. However, this whole does have an operation that is not proper to its parts but to the whole—for example, an assault of the entire army. Likewise the movement of a boat is a combined operation of the crew rowing the boat. There is also a kind of whole that has not only a unity of order but of composition, or of conjunction, or even of continuity, and according to this unity a thing is one absolutely; and therefore there is no operation of the part that does not belong to the whole. For in things all of one piece the motion of the whole and of the part is the same. Similarly in composites and in conjoined things, the operation of a part is principally that of the whole. For this reason it is necessary that such a consideration of both the whole and its parts should belong to the same science. It does not, however, pertain to the same science to consider the whole, which has solely the unity of order, and the parts of this whole. Et inde est, quod moralis philosophia in tres partes dividitur. Quarum prima considerat operationes unius hominis ordinatas ad finem, quae vocatur monastica. Secunda autem considerat operationes multitudinis domesticae, quae vocatur oeconomica. Tertia autem considerat operationes multitudinis civilis, quae vocatur politica. 6. Thus it is that moral philosophy is divided into three parts. The first of these, which is called individual (monastic) ethics, considers an individual’s operations as ordered to an end. The second, called domestic ethics, considers the operations of the domestic group. The third, called political science, considers the operations of the civic group. Incipiens igitur Aristoteles tradere moralem philosophiam a prima sui parte in hoc libro, qui dicitur Ethicorum, idest Moralium, praemittit prooemium, in quo tria facit. Primo enim ostendit de quo est intentio. Secundo modum tractandi, ibi, dicetur autem utique sufficienter et cetera. Tertio qualis debeat esse auditor huius scientiae, ibi: unusquisque autem bene iudicat et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo praemittit quaedam, quae sunt necessaria ad propositum ostendendum. Secundo manifestat propositum, ibi, si utique est aliquis finis et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo enim proponit necessitatem finis; secundo habitudinem humanorum actuum ad finem, ibi: multis autem operationibus et cetera. Circa primum tria facit. Primo proponit, quod omnia humana ordinantur ad finem; secundo ostendit diversitatem finium, ibi, differentia vero finium etc.; tertio ponit comparationem finium adinvicem, ibi, quorum autem sunt fines et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo proponit quod intendit. Secundo manifestat propositum, ibi, ideo bene enunciaverunt et cetera. 7. Thus Aristotle as he begins the treatment of moral philosophy in the first part of this book called Ethics, or morals, first gives an introduction in which he does three things. First  he shows what he intends to do. Second [Lect. 3, II], at “Our study will be etc.” (B.1094 b 13), he determines the manner of treatment. Third [III] in the same lecture, at “Now every man etc.” (B.1094 b 29), he explains what manner of person the student of this science ought to be. In regard to the initial point he does two things. First [A] he presents in advance certain things necessary to explain his intention. Second [Lect. 2, B], at “If our actions etc.” (B.1094 a 19), he manifests his intention. In regard to the first he does two things. Initially  he shows how it is necessary to start with the end. Then , at “Since there are many etc.,” he compares habits and acts with the end. On the first point he does three things. He states initially [1, a] that all human beings are ordered to an end. Next [1, b], at “Now a certain diversity etc.,” he shows that there can be a number of ends. Last [ 1, c], at “If the ends are works etc.,” he makes a comparison among ends. In regard to the first point he does two things. He states his intention [i]; and then, at “For this reason etc.” [ii], he explains his purpose. Circa primum, considerandum est, quod duo sunt principia humanorum actuum, scilicet intellectus seu ratio, et appetitus, quae sunt principia moventia, ut dicitur in tertio de anima. In intellectu autem vel ratione consideratur speculativum et practicum. In appetitu autem rationali consideratur electio et executio. Omnia autem ista ordinantur ad aliquod bonum sicut in finem; nam verum est finis speculationis. 8. In regard to the first we should consider that there are two principles of human acts, namely, the intellect or reason and the appetite, which are active principles as explained in the third book De Anima (Ch. XI, 434 a5a22; St. Th. Lect. 16, 840-846). The intellect or reason considers both the speculative and the practical. The rational appetite is concerned with choice and execution. Now all these are ordered to some good as to their end, for truth is the end of speculation. Quantum ergo ad intellectum speculativum ponit doctrinam per quam transfunditur scientia a magistro in discipulum. Quantum vero ad intellectum practicum ponit artem, quae est recta ratio factibilium, ut habetur in VI huius; quantum vero ad actum intellectus appetitivi ponitur electio. Quantum vero ad executionem ponitur actus. Non facit autem mentionem de prudentia, quae est in ratione practica sicut et ars, quia per prudentiam proprie dirigitur electio. Dicit ergo quod singulum horum manifeste appetit quoddam bonum tamquam finem. Therefore, in the speculative intellect he includes teaching by which science is conveyed from teacher to student, while in the practical intellect he locates art which is right reason applied to things to be made, as is stated in the sixth book of this work (1153). He indicates that the act of the appetitive intellect is choice, and that execution is “actus.” He does not mention prudence, which is in the practical reason together with art, because choice is properly directed by prudence. He says therefore that each of these faculties obviously seeks some good as an end. Deinde cum dicit: ideo bene enuntiaverunt etc., manifestat propositum per diffinitionem boni. Circa quod considerandum est, quod bonum numeratur inter prima: adeo quod secundum Platonicos, bonum est prius ente. Sed secundum rei veritatem bonum cum ente convertitur. Prima autem non possunt notificari per aliqua priora, sed notificantur per posteriora, sicut causae per proprios effectus. Cum autem bonum proprie sit motivum appetitus, describitur bonum per motum appetitus, sicut solet manifestari vis motiva per motum. Et ideo dicit, quod philosophi bene enunciaverunt, bonum esse id quod omnia appetunt. 9. Then [ii], at “For this reason,” he manifests his intention by the effect of good. In regard to this we should bear in mind that good is enumerated among the primary entities to such a degree—according to the Platonists—that good is prior to being. But, in reality, good is convertible with being. Now primary things cannot be understood by anything anterior to them, but by something consequent, as causes are understood through their proper effects. But since good properly is the moving principle of the appetite, good is described as movement of the appetite, just as motive power is usually manifested through motion. For this reason he says that the philosophers have rightly declared that good is what all desire. Nec est instantia de quibusdam, qui appetunt malum. Quia non appetunt malum nisi sub ratione boni, in quantum scilicet aestimant illud esse bonum, et sic intentio eorum per se fertur ad bonum, sed per accidens cadit supra malum. 10. There is no problem from the fact that some men desire evil. For they desire evil only under the aspect of good, that is, insofar as they think it good. Hence their intention primarily aims at the good and only incidentally touches on the evil. Quod autem dicit quod omnia appetunt, non est intelligendum solum de habentibus cognitionem, quae apprehendunt bonum, sed etiam de rebus carentibus cognitione, quae naturali appetitu tendunt in bonum, non quasi cognoscant bonum, sed quia ab aliquo cognoscente moventur ad bonum, scilicet ex ordinatione divini intellectus: ad modum quo sagitta tendit ad signum ex directione sagittantis. Ipsum autem tendere in bonum, est appetere bonum, unde et actum dixit appetere bonum in quantum tendit in bonum. Non autem est unum bonum in quod omnia tendunt, ut infra dicetur. Et ideo non describitur hic aliquod unum bonum, sed bonum communiter sumptum. Quia autem nihil est bonum, nisi inquantum est quaedam similitudo et participatio summi boni, ipsum summum bonum quodammodo appetitur in quolibet bono et sic potest dici quod unum bonum est, quod omnia appetunt. 11. The saying “... what all desire” is to be understood not only of those who knowingly seek good but also of beings lacking knowledge. These things by a natural desire tend to good, not as knowing the good, but because they are moved to it by something cognitive, that is, under the direction of the divine intellect in the way an arrow speeds towards a target by the aim of the archer. This very tendency to good is the desiring of good. Hence, he says, all beings desire good insofar as they tend to good. But there is not one good to which all tend; this will be explained later (58-59; 108-109). Therefore he does not single out here a particular good but rather discusses good in general. However, because nothing is good except insofar as it is a likeness and participation of the highest good, the highest good itself is in some way desired in every particular good. Thus it can be said that the true good is what all desire. Deinde cum dicit: differentia vero quaedam etc., ostendit differentiam finium. Circa quod considerandum est, quod finale bonum in quod tendit appetitus uniuscuiusque est ultima perfectio eius. Prima autem perfectio se habet per modum formae. Secunda autem per modum operationis. Et ideo oportet hanc esse differentiam finium quod quidam fines sint ipsae operationes, quidam vero sint ipsa opera, id est opera quaedam praeter operationes. 12. Then [i, b], at “Now a certain diversity,” he indicates that there is a diversity of ends. In this we must keep in mind that the final good, to which the inclination of each thing tends, is its ultimate perfection. Now the first perfection is possessed after the manner of a form, but the second perfection by way of an operation. Consequently, there must be this diversity of ends: some are operations and others are the objects achieved, that is, the products which exist apart from the operations. Ad cuius evidentiam considerandum est, quod duplex est operatio, ut dicitur in IX metaphysicae: una quae manet in ipso operante, sicut videre, velle et intelligere: et huiusmodi operatio proprie dicitur actio; alia autem est operatio transiens in exteriorem materiam, quae proprie dicitur factio; et haec est duplex: quandoque enim aliquis exteriorem materiam assumit solum ad usum, sicut equum ad equitandum, et cytharam ad cytharizandum. Quandoque autem assumit materiam exteriorem ut mutet eam in aliquam formam, sicut cum artifex facit lectum aut domum. Prima igitur et secunda harum operationum non habent aliquid operatum quod sit finis, sed utraque earum est finis; prima tamen nobilior est quam secunda: inquantum manet in ipso operante. Tertia vero operatio est sicut generatio quaedam, cuius finis est res generata. Et ideo in operationibus tertii generis ipsa operata sunt fines. 13. For evidence of this we must consider that activity is of two kinds, as noted in the ninth book of the Metaphysics (Ch. 8, 1050 a 23; St. Th. lect. 8, 1862-1865). One, which remains in the agent himself, as seeing, wishing and understanding, is an operation of the type properly called “action.” The other is an operation passing over into external matter and is properly called “making.” Sometimes a person accepts external matter only for use, as a horse for riding and a zither for playing, and at other times he takes external matter to change it into some other form, as when a carpenter constructs a house or a bed. Accordingly, the first and second of these operations do not have any product which is their term, but each of them is an end. The first, however, is more excellent than the second, inasmuch as it remains in the agent himself. But the third operation is a kind of generation whose term is a thing produced. So, in operations of the third type, the things done are the ends. Deinde cum dicit: quorum autem sunt fines etc., ponit tertium; dicens, quod in quibuscumque operata, quae sunt praeter operationes, sunt fines, oportet quod in his operata sint meliora operationibus: sicut res generata est melior generatione. Nam finis est potior his quae sunt ad finem. Nam ea quae sunt in finem habent rationem boni ex ordine in finem. 14. Then [ i, c ], at “If the ends,” he presents the third type, saying that whenever the products which are extrinsic to the activities are ends, the things produced necessarily are better than the operations that brought them to be, as the thing generated is better than the generative action. The end is more important than the means—in fact, the means have goodness from their relation to the end. Deinde cum dicit: multis autem operationibus etc., agit de comparatione habituum et actuum ad finem. Et circa hoc quatuor facit. Primo manifestat, quod diversa ordinantur ad diversos fines. Et dicit, quod cum multae sint operationes, et artes et doctrinae, necesse est quod earum sint diversi fines. Quia fines, et ea quae sunt ad finem sunt proportionalia. Quod quidem manifestat per hoc, quod artis medicinalis finis est sanitas, navifactivae vero navigatio, militaris autem victoria, oeconomicae vero, idest dispensativae domus, divitiae, quod quidem dicit secundum multorum opinionem. Ipse autem probat in primo politicae, quod divitiae non sunt finis oeconomicae, sed instrumenta. 15. Then , at “Since there are many operations,” he compares habits and acts with the end. In this matter he does four things. First [2, a] he shows that different things are ordered to different ends. He says that, since there are many operations and arts and sciences, there must be different ends for each of them, for the ends and the means are proportional. This he shows by saying that the end of medical art is health; of shipbuilding, navigation; of strategy, victory; and of domestic economy or managing a household, riches. He accepts this last example on the opinion of the majority of men, for he himself proves in the first book of the Politics (Ch. 3-4, 1253 b 12-1254 a; St. Th. Lect. 2, 46-51; Ch. 9-11, 1256 b 40-1259 a 36; St. Th. Lect. 7-9, 71-100) that riches are not the end of domestic economy but the instruments thereof. Secundo ibi: quaecumque autem sunt talium etc., ponit ordinem habituum adinvicem. Contingit enim unum habitum operativum, quem vocat virtutem, sub alio esse. Sicut ars quae facit frena est sub arte equitandi, quia ille qui debet equitare praecipit artifici qualiter faciat frenum. Et sic est architector, idest principalis artifex respectu ipsius. Et eadem ratio est de aliis artibus, quae faciunt alia instrumenta necessaria ad equitandum, puta sellas, vel aliquid huiusmodi. Equestris autem ulterius ordinatur sub militari. Milites enim dicebantur antiquitus non solum equites, sed quicumque pugnatores ad vincendum. Unde sub militari continetur non solum equestris, sed omnis ars vel virtus ordinata ad bellicam operationem, sicut sagittaria, fundibularia vel quaecumque alia huiusmodi. Et per eundem modum aliae artes sub aliis. 16. Second [2, b], at “In all such skills,” he arranges the order of habits among themselves. It happens that one operative habit, which he calls virtue (skill), is subordinated to another, as the art of bridle-making is subordinated to the art of riding because the rider tells the bridle-maker how he should make the bridle. In this way the rider is the designer, that is, the chief producer of the thing itself. The same arguments hold for the other arts making additional equipment needed for riding, such as saddles or the like. The equestrian art is again subordinated to the military, for in ancient times the army included not only mounted soldiers but everyone who fought for victory. Hence under military science there is not only the equestrian but every art or skill ordered to the prosecution of war-archery, ballistics and everything else of this kind. In this same way other arts are subordinated to still others. Tertio ibi: in omnibus utique etc., proponit ordinem finium secundum ordinem habituum. Et dicit quod in omnibus artibus vel virtutibus hoc communiter est verum, quod fines architectonicarum sunt simpliciter quoad omnes magis desiderabiles, quam fines artium vel virtutum, quae sunt sub principalibus. Quod probat per hoc, quod homines persequuntur, id est quaerunt, illa, id est fines inferiorum artium vel virtutum gratia horum, idest propter fines superiorum. Litera autem suspensiva est, et sic legenda: quaecumque sunt talium sub una quadam virtute (...) in omnibus utique architectonicarum fines et cetera. 17, Third [2, c], at “It follows then,” he lays down the order of ends according to the order of habits. He says that in all arts or skills it is commonly true that the architectonic ends are absolutely more desirable to everyone than are the ends of the arts or skills that are subordinated to the chief ends. He proves this from the fact that men follow or seek the ends of the inferior arts or skills for the sake of the ends of the superior. The text, however, is suspensive, and should be read as follows: In all such skills a subordination of one to another is found... in all these the architectonic ends etc. Quarto ostendit non differre quantum ad ordinem finium, utrum finis sit opus vel operatio. Et dicit quod nihil differt, quantum ad ordinem pertinet, quod fines earum sint operationes, aut aliquod operatum praeter operationes, sicut apparet in praedictis doctrinis. Nam frenifactivae finis est operatum frenum; equestris vero, quae est principalior, finis est operatio scilicet equitatio; e converso autem se habet in medicinali, et in exercitativa. Nam medicinalis finis est aliquod operatum, idest sanitas. Exercitativae vero, quae sub ea continetur, finis est operatio idest exercitium. 18. Fourth [2, d], at “It does not matter,” he shows that it makes no difference in the order of ends, whether the end is a product or an activity. He says that it makes no difference in what pertains to this order that these ends be activities or some product other than the activities, as is evident from the explanation given above (16). The end of bridle-making is a finished bridle; but the end of horsemanship, which is of greater importance, is an operation, that is, riding. The contrary is true in medicine and gymnastics, for the end of medicine is something produced, namely, health. But of gymnastics which is comprised under it, the end is an activity, which is exercise.
The Supreme End of Human Affairs; Political Science
Chapter 2 B. The philosopher now begins to show what the principal purpose of this science is. 1. HE SHOWS... THERE IS SOME SUPREME END OF HUMAN AFFAIRS. — 19-22 εἰ δή τι τέλος ἐστὶ τῶν πρακτῶν ὃ δι' αὑτὸ βουλόμεθα, τἆλλα δὲ διὰ τοῦτο, καὶ μὴ πάντα δι' ἕτερον αἱρούμεθα πρόεισι γὰρ οὕτω γ' εἰς ἄπειρον, ὥστ' εἶναι κενὴν καὶ ματαίαν τὴν ὄρεξιν, δῆλον ὡς τοῦτ' ἂν εἴη τἀγαθὸν καὶ τὸ ἄριστον. If our actions have an end that we wish for itself and if we wish other things for that end, and not each thing on account of another (for this would involve us in an infinite process making our desire useless and in vain) then obviously that will be not only a good end but a supreme end. 2. HE SHOWS THAT IT IS NECESSARY TO KNOW THIS END. a. He shows that it is necessary for man to know such an end. — 23 ἆρ' οὖν καὶ πρὸς τὸν βίον ἡ γνῶσις αὐτοῦ μεγάλην ἔχει ῥοπήν, καὶ καθάπερ τοξόται σκοπὸν ἔχοντες μᾶλλον ἂν τυγχάνοιμεν τοῦ δέοντος; εἰ A knowledge of it, therefore, will be a great help in human living, for like archers keeping their eye on the target, we will more likely attain our objective. b. He manifests what man should know about it. — 24 δ' οὕτω, πειρατέον τύπῳ γε περιλαβεῖν αὐτὸ τί ποτ' ἐστὶ καὶ τίνος τῶν ἐπιστημῶν ἢ δυνάμεων. This being the case, we must try to determine the general characteristics of this end and to which of the sciences or skills its study pertains. 3. HE SHOWS TO WHICH SCIENCE THIS KNOWLEDGE BELONGS. a. He gives a reason in proof of his statement. — 25 δόξειε δ' ἂν τῆς κυριωτάτης καὶ μάλιστα ἀρχιτεκτονικῆς. τοιαύτη δ' ἡ πολιτικὴ φαίνεται· It seems undoubtedly to belong to the most truly architectonic science. This, to all appearances, is political science. b. He proves something that he had previously assumed. i. He proves that (political science) is most truly architectonic. x. He ascribes to political science... the things belonging to an architectonic science. — 26-28 τίνας γὰρ εἶναι χρεὼν τῶν ἐπιστημῶν ἐν ταῖς πόλεσι, καὶ ποίας ἑκάστους μανθάνειν καὶ μέχρι τίνος, αὕτη διατάσσει· ὁρῶμεν δὲ καὶ τὰς ἐντιμοτάτας τῶν δυνάμεων ὑπὸ ταύτην οὔσας, οἷον στρατηγικὴν οἰκονομικὴν ῥητορικήν· Now such a science ordains which studies are to be followed in a state, and who are to pursue them and to what extent. Hence we see the noblest of the operative arts, for example, strategy, domestic economy, and rhetoric fall under political science. y. From this he draws the conclusion he intended. — 29 χρωμένης δὲ ταύτης ταῖς λοιπαῖς [πρακτικαῖς] τῶν ἐπιστημῶν, ἔτι δὲ νομοθετούσης τί δεῖ πράττειν καὶ τίνων ἀπέχεσθαι, τὸ ταύτης τέλος περιέχοι ἂν τὰ τῶν ἄλλων, ὥστε τοῦτ' ἂν εἴη τἀνθρώπινον ἀγαθόν. Political Science in fact makes use of other practical sciences, even legislating what is to be done and what is not to be done. Its end, therefore, embraces the ends of the other practical sciences. For these reasons, then, this end will be the good of man. ii. (He proves) that it is most important. — 30-31 εἰ γὰρ καὶ ταὐτόν ἐστιν ἑνὶ καὶ πόλει, μεῖζόν γε καὶ τελειότερον τὸ τῆς πόλεως φαίνεται καὶ λαβεῖν καὶ σώζειν· ἀγαπητὸν μὲν γὰρ καὶ ἑνὶ μόνῳ, κάλλιον δὲ καὶ θειότερον ἔθνει καὶ πόλεσιν. ἡ μὲν οὖν μέθοδος τούτων ἐφίεται, πολιτική τις οὖσα. Even though the good be the same for one man and for the whole state, it seems much better and more perfect to procure and preserve the good of the whole state. It is admirable, indeed, to preserve the good of an individual but it is better still and more divine to do this for a nation and for cities. With such a good as the object of our inquiry we may call our study political science.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Si itaque est aliquis finis operabilium et cetera. Praemissis his quae sunt necessaria ad propositum ostendendum, hic accedit philosophus ad manifestandum propositum, scilicet ad ostendendum ad quid principaliter respiciat huius scientiae intentio. Et circa hoc tria facit. Primo ostendit ex praemissis, esse aliquem finem optimum in rebus humanis. Secundo ostendit, quod necessarium est habere cognitionem de ipso, ibi, igitur ad vitam et cetera. Tertio ostendit ad quam scientiam pertineat eius cognitio ibi. Videbitur autem utique principalissimae et cetera. Circa primum utitur triplici ratione. Quarum principalis talis est. Quicumque finis est talis quod alia volumus propter illum et ipsum volumus propter se ipsum et non aliquid aliud, iste finis non solum est bonus, sed etiam est optimus, et hoc apparet ex hoc quod semper finis cuius gratia alii fines quaeruntur est principalior, ut ex supra dictis patet; sed necesse est esse aliquem talem finem. Ergo in rebus humanis est aliquis finis bonus et optimus. 19. After having stated premises on which his proposition must rest, the Philosopher now begins to manifest it, that is, to show what the principal purpose of this science is [B]. To achieve this he does three things. First [1 ] he shows from what he has already said, that there is some supreme end of human affairs. Second , at “A knowledge of it etc.,” he shows that it is necessary to know this end. Third , at “It seems undoubtedly,” he shows to which science this knowledge belongs. He gives three proofs for the first statement. The principal one is this. Whenever an end is such that we wish other things because of it, and we wish it for itself and not because of something else, then that end is not only a good end but a supreme one. This is obvious from the fact that an end for the sake of which other ends are sought is of greater importance than they, as is evident from his earlier remarks (16). But it is necessary that there be some such end of human affairs. Therefore, human life or activity has some good end which is supreme. Minorem probat secunda ratione ducente ad impossibile, quae talis est. Manifestum est ex praemissis quod unus finis propter alium desideratur. Aut ergo est devenire ad aliquem finem, qui non desideratur propter alium, aut non. Si sic, habetur propositum. Si autem non est invenire aliquem talem finem, consequens est quod omnis finis desideretur propter alium finem. Et sic oportet procedere in infinitum. Sed hoc est impossibile, quod procedatur in finibus in infinitum: ergo necesse est esse aliquem finem qui non sit propter alium finem desideratus. 20. He proves the minor premise by an argument leading to an impossible conclusion. Thus, it is evident from the premises (16) that one end is desired on account of another. Now, either we arrive at some end which is not desired on account of another, or we do not. If we do, the proposition is proved. If, however, we do not find some such end, it follows that every end will be desired on account of another end. In this case we must proceed to infinity. But it is impossible in ends to proceed to infinity. Therefore, there must be some end that is not desired on account of another. Quod autem sit impossibile in finibus procedere in infinitum, probat tertia ratione quae est etiam ducens ad impossibile, hoc modo. Si procedatur in infinitum in desiderio finium, ut scilicet semper unus finis desideretur propter alium in infinitum, nunquam erit devenire ad hoc quod homo consequatur fines desideratos. Sed frustra et vane aliquis desiderat id quod non potest assequi; ergo desiderium finis esset frustra et vanum. Sed hoc desiderium est naturale: dictum enim est supra quod bonum est, quod naturaliter omnia desiderant; ergo sequetur quod naturale desiderium sit inane et vacuum. Sed hoc est impossibile. Quia naturale desiderium nihil aliud est quam inclinatio inhaerens rebus ex ordinatione primi moventis, quae non potest esse supervacua; ergo impossibile est quod in finibus procedatur in infinitum. 21. That it is impossible in ends to proceed to infinity is proved also by an argument having an impossible resolution. If we should proceed to infinity in our desire for ends so that one end should always be desired on account of another to infinity, we will never arrive at the point where a man may attain the ends desired. But a man desires fruitlessly what he cannot get; consequently, the end he desires would be useless and vain. But this desire is natural, for it was said above (9) that the good is what all beings naturally desire. Hence it follows that a natural desire would be useless and vain. But this is impossible. The reason is that a natural desire is nothing else but an inclination belonging to things by the disposition of the First Mover, and this cannot be frustrated. Therefore, it is impossible that we should proceed to an infinity of ends. Et sic necesse est esse aliquem ultimum finem propter quem omnia alia desiderantur et ipse non desideratur propter alia. Et ita necesse est esse aliquem optimum finem rerum humanarum. 12. It follows that there must be some ultimate end on account of which all other things are desired, while this end itself is not desired on account of anything else. So there must be some supreme end of human affairs. Deinde cum dicit: igitur ad vitam etc., ostendit quod huius finis cognitio, est homini necessaria. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo ostendit, quod necessarium est homini cognoscere talem finem. Secundo ostendit quid de eo cognoscere oporteat, ibi, si autem sic, tentandum est, et cetera. Concludit ergo primo ex dictis, quod ex quo est aliquis optimus finis rerum humanarum, cognitio eius, habet magnum incrementum ad vitam, idest multum auxilium confert ad totam vitam humanam. Quod quidem apparet tali ratione. Nihil quod in alterum dirigitur potest homo recte assequi nisi cognoscat illud ad quod dirigendum est. Et hoc apparet per exemplum sagittatoris, qui directe emittit sagittam, attendens ad signum ad quod eam dirigit. Sed tota humana vita oportet quod ordinetur in ultimum et optimum finem humanae vitae; ergo ad rectitudinem humanae vitae necesse est habere cognitionem de ultimo et optimo fine humanae vitae. Et huius ratio est, quia semper ratio eorum quae sunt ad finem, sumenda est ab ipso fine, ut etiam in secundo physicorum probatur. 23. Then , at “A knowledge of it,” he shows that the knowledge of this end is necessary for man. He proves this in two steps. First [2, a] he shows that it is necessary for man to know such an end. Second [2, b], at “This being the case etc.,” he manifests what man should know about it. He concludes then from what has been said (19-22), that it is necessary for man to know that there is a supreme end of human affairs because this has great importance for life, that is, it is of great help in all phases of human living. This conclusion is apparent for the following reasons. Nothing that is directed to another can be immediately attained by man unless he knows that other to which it is to he directed. An obvious indication of this is found in the example of the archer who shoots straight because he keeps his eye on the target at which he is aiming. Now man’s whole life ought to be ordered to the supreme and ultimate end of human life. It is necessary, therefore, to have a knowledge of this end of human life. The explanation is that the reason for the means must always be found in the end itself, as also is proved in the second book of the Physics (Ch. 9, 199 b 34-200 b 10; St. Th. Lect. 15, 184-188). Deinde cum dicit: si autem sic etc., ostendit quid circa istum finem sit cognoscendum. Et dicit quod ex quo sic est, quod cognitio optimi finis necessaria est ad vitam humanam: oportet accipere quis sit iste optimus finis et ad quam scientiam speculativam vel practicam pertineat eius consideratio. Per disciplinas enim intelligit scientias speculativas, per virtutes autem scientias practicas, quia sunt aliquarum operationum principia. Dicit autem quod tentandum est de his determinare ad insinuandum difficultatem, quae est in accipiendo ultimum finem in humana vita sicut et in considerando omnes causas altissimas. Dicit autem quod oportet illud accipere figuraliter, id est verisimiliter, quia talis modus accipiendi convenit rebus humanis, ut infra dicetur. Horum autem duorum, primum quidem pertinet ad tractatum huius scientiae, quia talis consideratio est circa rem de qua haec scientia considerat. Sed secundum pertinet ad prooemium: in quo manifestatur intentio huius doctrinae. 24. Then [2, b], at “This being the case,” he shows what ought to be known about that end. He states that inasmuch as the knowledge of the supreme end is necessary for human life, we must determine what, is the supreme end, and to which speculative or practical science its study belongs. By sciences he understands the speculative sciences, and by skills the practical sciences since there are principles of some operations. According to him we must make this attempt, in order to suggest the difficulty there is in grasping the ultimate end of human life, as in considering all ultimate causes. He says then that we should understand it in its general outlines, that is, with only the evidence of probability because such a manner of understanding is largely what is available in human things, as he will explain later on (131-134). Now the first of these two belongs to the treatise on this science because such a consideration is about the matter of this science. But the second belongs to the introduction, where its purpose is explained. Et ideo statim consequenter cum dicit: videbitur autem utique etc., ostendit ad quam scientiam pertineat huius finis consideratio. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo ponit rationem ad propositum ostendendum. Secundo probat quiddam quod supposuerat, ibi: quas enim esse est debitum et cetera. Primo ergo ponit rationem ad propositum, quae talis est. Optimus finis pertinet ad principalissimam scientiam, et maxime architectonicam. Et hoc patet ex his, quae supra praemissa sunt. Dictum est enim quod sub scientia vel arte quae est de fine continentur illae quae sunt circa ea quae sunt ad finem. Et sic oportet quod ultimus finis pertineat ad scientiam principalissimam, tamquam de principalissimo fine existentem, et maxime architectonicae, tamquam praecipienti aliis quid oporteat facere. Sed civilis scientia videtur esse talis, scilicet principalissima, et maxime architectonica. Ergo ad eam pertinet considerare optimum finem. 25. Therefore when immediately after this material he says “It seems undoubtedly” , he shows to which science the consideration of this end should belong. In regard to this he does two things. First [3, a] he gives a reason in proof of his statement. Second [3, b], at “Now such a science etc.,” he proves something which he had previously presumed. First then, he states the reason for his proposal, which is this: the supreme end belongs to the most important and most truly architectonic science. This is clear from what was said above, for it was pointed out (16, 20) that the sciences or arts treating of the means to the end are contained under the science or art treating of the end. So it is necessary that the ultimate end should belong to the most important science concerned with the primary and most important end and to the truly architectonic science as directing the others in what they should do. But political science appears to be such, namely, the most important and the most truly architectonic. Therefore, it belongs to it to consider the supreme end. Deinde cum dicit: quas enim esse etc., probat quod supposuerat; scilicet quod civilis sit talis. Et primo probat quod sit maxime architectonica. Secundo quod sit principalissima, ibi: si enim et idem est uni et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo attribuit politicae, sive civili, ea quae pertinent ad scientiam architectonicam. Secundo ex his concludit propositum, ibi, utente autem hac et cetera. Duo autem pertinent ad scientiam architectonicam, quorum unum est, quod ipsa praecipit scientiae vel arti quae est sub ipsa quid debeat operari, sicut equestris praecipit frenifactivae. Aliud autem est, quod utitur ea ad suum finem. Primum autem horum convenit politicae, vel civili, tam respectu speculativarum scientiarum, quam respectu practicarum; aliter tamen et aliter. Nam practicae scientiae praecipit politica, et quantum ad usum eius ut scilicet operetur vel non operetur, et quantum ad determinationem actus. Praecipit enim fabro non solum quod utatur sua arte, sed etiam quod sic utatur, tales cultellos faciens. Utrumque enim est ordinatum ad finem humanae vitae. 26. Then [3, b], at “Now such a science’ “ he proves what he had taken for granted: that political science is such a science. First [b, i] he proves that it is most truly architectonic, and next [b, ii], at “For even though the good etc.,” that it is most important. He handles the first statement in two ways. First [i, x] he ascribes to political science or politics the things which belong to an architectonic science. Second [i, y] from this he draws the conclusion he intended, at “Political science etc.” There are two characteristics of architectonic knowledge. One is that it dictates what is to be done by the art or science subject to it, as the equestrian art dictates the manner of bridle-making. The other is that it uses it for its own ends. Now the first of these is applicable to politics or political science both in regard to speculative and in regard to practical sciences-in different ways, however. Political science dictates to a practical science both in the matter of its activity, that is, whether or not it should operate, and in regard to the objects to which its operation is to be directed. It dictates to the smith not only that he use his skill but also that he use it in such a fashion as to make knives of a particular kind. Both (characteristics of architectonic knowledge) are ordered to the end of human living. Sed scientiae speculativae praecipit civilis solum quantum ad usum, non autem quantum ad determinationem operis; ordinat enim politica, quod aliqui doceant vel addiscant geometriam. Huiusmodi enim actus inquantum sunt voluntarii pertinent ad materiam moralem et sunt ordinabiles ad finem humanae vitae. Non autem praecipit politicus geometrae quid de triangulo concludat, hoc enim non subiacet humanae voluntati, nec est ordinabile humanae vitae, sed dependet ex ipsa rerum ratione. Et ideo dicit, quod politica praeordinat quas disciplinarum debitum est esse in civitatibus, scilicet tam practicarum quam speculativarum, et quis quam debeat addiscere, et usque ad quod tempus. 27. But political science dictates to a speculative science only as to activity, but not concerning the specification of its proper activity. Political science orders that some teach or learn geometry, and actions of this kind insofar as they are voluntary belong to the matter of ethics and can be ordered to the goal of human living. But the political ruler does not dictate to geometry what conclusions it should draw about a triangle, for this is not subject to the human will nor can it be ordered to human living but it depends on the very nature of things. Therefore, he says that political science ordains which sciences, both practical and speculative, should be studied in a state, who should study them, and for how long. Alia autem proprietas scientiae architectonicae, scilicet uti inferioribus scientiis, pertinet ad politicam, solum respectu practicarum scientiarum; unde subdit quod pretiosissimas, idest nobilissimas virtutum idest artium operativarum videmus esse sub politica, scilicet militarem, et oeconomicam et rhetoricam, quibus omnibus utitur politica ad suum finem, scilicet ad bonum commune civitatis. 28. The other characteristic of an architectonic science, the use of subordinate sciences, belongs to political science only in reference to the practical sciences. Hence he adds that we see the most highly esteemed, the noblest skills, i.e., the operative arts, fall under political science-for example strategy, domestic economy, and rhetoric. Political science uses such skills for its own end, that is, for the common good of the state. Deinde cum dicit: utente autem hac etc., ex praemissis duobus concludit propositum. Et dicit quod, cum politica, quae practica est, utatur reliquis practicis disciplinis, sicut secundo dictum est, et cum ipsa legemponat quid oporteat operari et a quibus abstinere, ut primo dictum est, consequens est quod finis huius tamquam architectonicae complectitur, idest sub se continet fines aliarum scientiarum practicarum. Unde concludit quod hic, scilicet finis politicae, est humanum bonum, id est optimum in rebus humanis. 29. Then [i, y], at “Political science in fact,” he draws a conclusion from two premises. He says that since political science uses the other practical sciences, as already noted (28), and since it legislates what is to be done and what omitted, as previously stated (27), it follows that the end of this science as architectonic embraces or contains under itself the ends of other practical sciences. Hence, he concludes, the end of political science is the good of man, that is, the supreme end of human things. Deinde cum dicit: si enim et idem est etc., ostendit quod politica sit principalissima, ex ipsa ratione proprii finis. Manifestum est enim quod unaquaeque causa tanto potior est quanto ad plura effectus eius se extendit. Unde et bonum, quod habet rationem causae finalis, tanto potius est quanto ad plura se extendit. Et ideo, si idem est bonum uni homini et toti civitati: multo videtur maius et perfectius suscipere, id est procurare, et salvare, id est conservare, illud quod est bonum totius civitatis, quam id quod est bonum unius hominis. Pertinet quidem enim ad amorem qui debet esse inter homines quod homo quaerat et conservet bonum etiam uni soli homini, sed multo melius est et divinius quod hoc exhibeatur toti genti et civitatibus. Vel aliter: amabile quidem est quod hoc exhibeatur uni soli civitati, sed multo divinius est, quod hoc exhibeatur toti genti, in qua multae civitates continentur. Dicit autem hoc esse divinius, eo quod magis pertinet ad Dei similitudinem, qui est universalis causa omnium bonorum. Hoc autem bonum, scilicet quod est commune uni vel civitatibus pluribus, intendit methodus quaedam, id est ars, quae vocatur civilis. Unde ad ipsam maxime pertinet considerare ultimum finem humanae vitae: tamquam ad principalissimam. 30. Then [b, ii], at “For even though the good be the same,” he shows that political science is the most important science from the very nature of its special end. It is evident that insofar as a cause is prior and more powerful it extends to more effects. Hence, insofar as the good, which has the nature of a final cause, is more powerful, it extends to more effects. So, even though the good be the same objective for one man and for the whole state, it seems much better and more perfect to attain, that is, to procure and preserve the good of the whole state than the good of any one man. Certainly it is a part of that love which should exist among men that a man preserve the good even of a single human being. But it is much better and more divine that this be done for a whole people and for states. It is even sometimes desirable that this be done for one state only, but it is much more divine that it be done for a whole people that includes many states. This is said to be more divine because it shows greater likeness to God who is the ultimate cause of all good. But this good common to one or to several states is the object of our inquiry, that is, of the particular skill called political science. Hence to it, as the most important science, belongs in a most special way the consideration of the ultimate end of human life. Sciendum est autem, quod politicam dicit esse principalissimam, non simpliciter, sed in genere activarum scientiarum, quae sunt circa res humanas, quarum ultimum finem politica considerat. Nam ultimum finem totius universi considerat scientia divina, quae est respectu omnium principalissima. Dicit autem ad politicam pertinere considerationem ultimi finis humanae vitae; de quo tamen in hoc libro determinat, quia doctrina huius libri continet prima elementa scientiae politicae. 31. But we should note that he says political science is the most important, not simply, but in that division of practical sciences which are concerned with human things, the ultimate end of which political science considers. The ultimate end of the whole universe is considered in theology which is the most important without qualification. He says that it belongs to political science to treat the ultimate end of human life. This however he discusses here since the matter of this book covers the fundamental notions of political science.
Qualities of the Student and Teacher
Chapter 3 II. HE NOW DETERMINES THE METHOD PROPER TO THIS SCIENCE. a. On the part of the teacher. — 32-35 λέγοιτο δ' ἂν ἱκανῶς, εἰ κατὰ τὴν ὑποκειμένην ὕλην διασαφηθείη· τὸ γὰρ ἀκριβὲς οὐχ ὁμοίως ἐν ἅπασι τοῖς λόγοις ἐπιζητητέον, ὥσπερ οὐδ' ἐν τοῖς δημιουργουμένοις. τὰ δὲ καλὰ καὶ τὰ δίκαια, περὶ ὧν ἡ πολιτικὴ σκοπεῖται, πολλὴν ἔχει διαφορὰν καὶ πλάνην, ὥστε δοκεῖν νόμῳ μόνον εἶναι, φύσει δὲ μή. τοιαύτην δέ τινα πλάνην ἔχει καὶ τἀγαθὰ διὰ τὸ πολλοῖς συμβαίνειν βλάβας ἀπ' αὐτῶν· ἤδη γάρ τινες ἀπώλοντο διὰ πλοῦτον, ἕτεροι δὲ δι' ἀνδρείαν. ἀγαπητὸν οὖν περὶ τοιούτων καὶ ἐκ τοιούτων λέγοντας παχυλῶς καὶ τύπῳ τἀληθὲς ἐνδείκνυσθαι, καὶ περὶ τῶν ὡς ἐπὶ τὸ πολὺ καὶ ἐκ τοιούτων λέγοντας τοιαῦτα καὶ συμπεραίνεσθαι. Our study will be adequately treated if it is investigated according to the nature of the subject matter. The same certitude should not be sought in all discussions just as the same exactness should not be expected in all the productions of art. Now good and just deeds, with which political science is concerned, are differently and mistakenly judged to such a degree that none of them seems to be good and just by nature but merely by disposition of law. Because of bad judgment, many have been harmed even by good things: some men have lost their lives by reason of riches, others by reason of physical courage. It is desirable therefore when treating of these variable subjects and when arguing from them as premises, to bring out roughly the outlines of the truth, and to conclude about those things which occur in the majority of cases. b. On the part of the student. — 36 τὸν αὐτὸν δὴ τρόπον καὶ ἀποδέχεσθαι χρεὼν ἕκαστα τῶν λεγομένων· πεπαιδευμένου γάρ ἐστιν ἐπὶ τοσοῦτον τἀκριβὲς ἐπιζητεῖν καθ' ἕκαστον γένος, ἐφ' ὅσον ἡ τοῦ πράγματος φύσις ἐπιδέχεται· παραπλήσιον γὰρ φαίνεται μαθηματικοῦ τε πιθανολογοῦντος ἀποδέχεσθαι καὶ ῥητορικὸν ἀποδείξεις ἀπαιτεῖν. In this same spirit the student ought to take whatever is taught, for it is proper to an educated man to look for as much certitude in each study as the nature of the subject admits. It approximates the same thing to allow a mathematician to use rhetorical arguments and to demand conclusive demonstrations from a rhetorician. III. HE SHOWS WHAT SORT OF PERSON THE STUDENT... OUGHT TO BE. a. Who is an incompetent student. i. He introduces certain things necessary to explain his proposition. — 37 ἕκαστος δὲ κρίνει καλῶς ἃ γινώσκει, καὶ τούτων ἐστὶν ἀγαθὸς κριτής. καθ' ἕκαστον μὲν ἄρα ὁ πεπαιδευμένος, ἁπλῶς δ' ὁ περὶ πᾶν πεπαιδευμένος. Now every man is a good judge of the things he knows. Accordingly, then, one educated in a particular subject judges well what belongs to that subject. But the man who is well educated in all subjects can judge well about all. ii. He proves his statement. — 38 διὸ τῆς πολιτικῆς οὐκ ἔστιν οἰκεῖος ἀκροατὴς ὁ νέος· ἄπειρος γὰρ τῶν κατὰ τὸν βίον πράξεων, οἱ λόγοι δ' ἐκ τούτων καὶ περὶ τούτων· In keeping with this a young man is not a good student of political science, for he is inexperienced in the ways of life that are the starting point and subject matter of this science. b. Who is an unprofitable student. — 39-40 ἔτι δὲ τοῖς πάθεσιν ἀκολουθητικὸς ὢν ματαίως ἀκούσεται καὶ ἀνωφελῶς, ἐπειδὴ τὸ τέλος ἐστὶν οὐ γνῶσις ἀλλὰ πρᾶξις. διαφέρει δ' οὐδὲν νέος τὴν ἡλικίαν ἢ τὸ ἦθος νεαρός· οὐ γὰρ παρὰ τὸν χρόνον ἡ ἔλλειψις, ἀλλὰ διὰ τὸ κατὰ πάθος ζῆν καὶ διώκειν ἕκαστα. τοῖς γὰρ τοιούτοις ἀνόνητος ἡ γνῶσις γίνεται, καθάπερ τοῖς ἀκρατέσιν· Furthermore, because he is strongly influenced by his emotions, he will study political science without result and uselessly, for the end of this science is not knowledge but human action. Nor does it matter whether the student be immature in age or immature in character, for the deficiency is not due to time but to a life lived according to the passions and to the pursuit of each object of passion. Such men gain no profit from their knowledge; and the same is true of the incontinent. c. He explains the characteristics of the ideal student. — 41-42 τοῖς δὲ κατὰ λόγον τὰς ὀρέξεις ποιουμένοις καὶ πράττουσι πολυωφελὲς ἂν εἴη τὸ περὶ τούτων εἰδέναι. καὶ περὶ μὲν ἀκροατοῦ, καὶ πῶς ἀποδεκτέον, καὶ τί προτιθέμεθα, πεφροιμιάσθω ταῦτα. But it will certainly be very useful to have a knowledge of moral matters for those who desire and act according to the dictates of reason. To sum up what has been treated in the introduction: we have discussed the student, the method of demonstrating and the purpose of our science.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Dicetur autem utique sufficienter et cetera. Postquam philosophus ostendit quid sit bonum, quod principaliter intenditur in hac scientia, hic determinat modum huic scientiae convenientem. Et primo ex parte doctoris; secundo ex parte auditoris, ibi: eodem utique modo et cetera. Circa primum ponit talem rationem. Modus manifestandi veritatem in qualibet scientia, debet esse conveniens ei quod subiicitur sicut materia in illa scientia. Quod quidem manifestat ex hoc, quod certitudo non potest inveniri, nec est requirenda similiter in omnibus sermonibus, quibus de aliqua re ratiocinamur. Sicut etiam neque in conditis, id est his quae fiunt per artem, non est similis modus operandi in omnibus; sed unusquisque artifex operatur ex materia, secundum modum ei convenientem aliter quidem ex cera aliter ex luto, aliter ex ferro. Materia autem moralis talis est, quod non est ei conveniens perfecta certitudo. Et hoc manifestat per duo genera rerum quae videntur ad materiam moralem pertinere. 32. After the Philosopher has shown what is the good principally intended in this science, he now [II] determines the method proper to this science. He does this first on the part of the teacher [II, a]; and then, at “in the same spirit etc.,” on the part of the student [II, b]. In regard to the first he lays down this reason. The method of manifesting truth in any science ought to be suitable to the subject matter of that science. He shows this from the fact that certitude cannot be found, nor should it be sought, in the same degree in all discussions where we reason about anything. Likewise, the same method is not used in all products made by art; but each workman works with the material in a way suited to that material, in one way with the soil, in another with clay, in still another with metal. Now the matter of moral study is of such a nature that perfect certitude is not suitable to it. He shows this from two classes of things which seem to belong to the material with which moral study is concerned. Primo namque et principaliter ad materiam moralem pertinent opera virtuosa, quae vocat hic iusta, de quibus principaliter intendit civilis scientia. Circa quae non habetur certa sententia hominum, sed magna differentia est in hoc quod homines de his iudicant. Et in hoc multiplex error contingit. Nam quaedam sunt quae a quibusdam reputantur iusta et honesta, a quibusdam autem iniusta et inhonesta, secundum differentiam temporum et locorum et personarum. Aliquid enim reputatur vitiosum uno tempore aut in una regione, quod in alio tempore aut in alia regione non reputatur vitiosum. Et ex ista differentia contingit quosdam opinari quod nihil esset naturaliter iustum vel honestum, sed solum secundum legispositionem; de qua quidem opinione ipse plenius aget in V huius. 33. In the matter of morals the first and foremost place is held by virtuous works. They are called just and are the chief concern of political science. Regarding them there are no agreed opinions, but rather a decided difference is found in what men judge about them. In this matter a variety of errors occur, for certain actions, considered just and good by some, are looked upon as unjust and bad by others according to different times and places and persons. Now a deed is considered vicious at one time and in one country, but at a different time and in a different country it is not considered to be so. Because of this disagreement, it happens that some are of the opinion that no action is just or good by nature but only by disposition of law. We shall treat more fully of this opinion in the second book of this work (245-254). Secundo autem ad materiam moralem pertinent bona exteriora, quibus homo utitur ad finem, et circa ista etiam bona contingit invenire praedictum errorem, quia non semper eodem modo se habent in omnibus. Quidam enim per ea iuvantur, quibusdam vero ex ipsis proveniunt detrimenta. Multi enim homines occasione suarum divitiarum perierunt, utpote a latronibus interfecti. Quidam vero occasione suae fortitudinis corporalis, ex cuius fiducia incaute se periculis exposuerunt. Et sic manifestum est, quod materia moralis est varia et deformis, non habens omnimodam certitudinem. 34. Second, external goods that are used purposively by men have a moral consideration. In regard to them it happens that we find the mistake just mentioned inasmuch as these material goods are not always used in the same way by everyone. Some men are helped by them, while others indeed are harmed by them. Many are ruined by having riches—for instance, those who are murdered by robbers. Some by reason of their physical courage on which they rely have carelessly exposed themselves to dangers. Thus it is evident that moral matters are variable and divergent, not having the same certitude each time. Et quia secundum artem demonstrativae scientiae, oportet principia esse conformia conclusionibus, amabile est et optabile, de talibus, idest tam variabilibus, tractatum facientes, et ex similibus procedentes ostendere veritatem, primo quidem grosse idest applicando universalia principia et simplicia ad singularia et composita, in quibus est actus. Necessarium est enim in qualibet operativa scientia ut procedatur modo compositivo, e contrario autem in scientia speculativa necesse est ut procedatur modo resolutivo, resolvendo composita in principia simplicia. Deinde oportet ostendere veritatem figuraliter, idest verisimiliter; et hoc est procedere ex propriis principiis huius scientiae. Nam scientia moralis est de actibus voluntariis: voluntatis autem motivum est, non solum bonum, sed apparens bonum. Tertio oportet ut cum dicturi simus de his quae ut frequentius accidunt, idest de actibus voluntariis, quos voluntas non ex necessitate producit, sed forte inclinata magis ad unum quam ad aliud, ut etiam ex talibus procedamus, ut principia sint conclusionibus conformia. 35. Because, in the art of demonstrative science, principles must conform to conclusions, it is desirable and preferable when treating subjects so variable, and when proceeding from premises likewise variable, to bring out the truth first in a rough outline by applying universal principles to singulars and by proceeding from the simple (universal) to the complex (particular) where acts are concerned. For it is necessary in every practical science to proceed in a composite (i.e., deductive) manner. On the contrary in speculative science, it is necessary to proceed in an analytical manner by breaking down the complex into elementary principles. Second, we should bring out the outlines of the truth, that is, an approximation to the truth. This is to proceed from the proper principles of this science. Moral science treats the acts of the will, and the thing moving the will is not only the good but even fictitious good. Third, we must speak of events as they happen in the majority of cases, that is, of voluntary acts that proceed from the will, inclined perhaps to one alternative rather than another but never operating under compulsion. In these, too, we must proceed in such a way that principles are conformable to conclusions. Deinde cum dicit: eodem utique modo etc., ostendit quod auditorem oportet acceptare in moralibus praedictum modum determinandi. Et dicit, quod debitum est, quod unusquisque recipiat unumquodque (eorum) quae sibi ab alio dicuntur eodem modo, id est secundum quod convenit materiae. Quia ad hominem disciplinatum, idest bene instructum, pertinet, ut tantum certitudinem quaerat in unaquaque materia, quantum natura rei patitur. Non enim potest esse tanta certitudo in materia variabili et contingenti, sicut in materia necessaria, semper eodem modo se habente. Et ideo auditor bene disciplinatus nec debet maiorem certitudinem requirere, nec minori esse contentus, quam sit conveniens rei de qua agitur. Propinquum enim peccatum esse videtur, si aliquis auditor acceptet aliquem mathematicum persuasionibus rhetoricis utentem, et si expetat a rhetorico demonstrationes certas, quales debet proferre mathematicus. Utrumque enim contingit ex hoc, quod non consideratur modus materiae conveniens. Nam mathematica est circa materiam, in qua invenitur omnimoda certitudo. Rhetorica autem negotiatur circa materiam civilem, in qua multiplex variatio accidit. 36. Then [II, b], at “In this same spirit,” he shows that the student must accept this limitation in moral matters. He says that it is proper that each one should take whatever is said to him by another in the same spirit, that is, as the matter warrants. The reason is that a learned or well-instructed man should look for as much certitude in any matter as the nature of the subject admits. There cannot be as much certainty in variable and contingent matter as in necessary matter which is always the same. Therefore, the educated man ought not to look for greater, nor be satisfied with less, certitude than is appropriate to the subject under discussion. It seems an equal fault to allow a mathematician to use rhetorical arguments and to demand from a rhetorician conclusive demonstrations such as a mathematician should give. But mistakes happen because the method appropriate to the matter is not considered. Mathematics is concerned with matter in which perfect certitude is found. Rhetoric, however, deals with political matter where a variety of views occurs. Deinde cum dicit unusquisque autem iudicat bene etc., ostendit qualis debeat esse auditor huius scientiae. Et primo ostendit quis sit insufficiens auditor. Secundo quis sit inutilis, ibi, amplius autem passionum et cetera. Tertio ostendit quis sit auditor conveniens, ibi, secundum rationem autem et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo praemittit quaedam quae sunt necessaria ad propositum ostendendum. Et dicit, quod unusquisque non potest habere bonum iudicium nisi de his quae cognoscit. Et sic ille qui est instructus circa unum quodlibet genus bene potest iudicare de his quae pertinent ad illud genus. Sed ille qui est bene instructus circa omnia, potest simpliciter bene iudicare de omnibus. 37. Then [III], at “Now every man,” he shows what sort of person the student of this science ought to be. First [III, a] he shows who is an incompetent student; and second [III, b], at “Furthermore etc.,” who is an unprofitable student. Third [III, c], at “But it will certainly etc.,” he explains the characteristics of the ideal student. In respect to the first lie does two things. First [a, i] he introduces certain things necessary to explain his proposition. He states that each man can judge well only the things he knows. Thus a man educated in one particular subject can judge well what belongs to that subject. But the man who is well educated in all subjects can judge well about all, without restriction to a particular subject. Secundo ibi: idcirco politicae etc., concludit propositum, scilicet quod iuvenis non est conveniens auditor politicae et totius moralis scientiae, quae sub politica comprehenditur; quia sicut dictum est, nullus potest bene iudicare nisi ea quae novit. Omnis autem auditor oportet quod bene iudicet de his quae audit, ut scilicet bene dicta recipiat, non autem ea quae male dicuntur. Ergo oportet, quod nullus sit auditor conveniens nisi habeat aliquam notitiam eorum quae debet audire. Sed iuvenis non habet notitiam eorum quae pertinent ad scientiam moralem, quae maxime cognoscuntur per experientiam. Iuvenis autem est inexpertus operationum humanae vitae propter temporis brevitatem, et tamen rationes moralis scientiae procedunt ex his quae pertinent ad actus humanae vitae, et etiam sunt de his; sicut si dicatur quod liberalis minora sibi reservat, et maiora aliis tribuit, hoc iuvenis propter inexperientiam forte non iudicabit esse verum, et idem est in aliis civilibus. Unde manifestum est, quod iuvenis non est conveniens auditor politicae. 38. Second [a, ii], at “In keeping with this,” he proves his statement, namely, that a young man is not a good student of political science nor of any part of moral science comprised under political science, because as was said (37) a man can judge well only the things he knows. Now every student should make good judgments about what he studies, so that he may accept what is true but not what is false. Therefore, no one can be a good student unless he has some knowledge of what he ought to study. But a young man does not have a knowledge of things belonging to moral science, which are known mostly by experience. A young man is inexperienced in the ways of life because of the very brevity of his life, while the principles of moral science proceed from what pertains to and also treats of the actions of human life. For instance, if it be said that the generous man keeps the cheaper things for himself and makes a present of the more expensive to others, a young man will perhaps judge this not to be true because of inexperience. It is the same with other social dealings. Hence it is evident that a young man is not a good student of political science. Deinde cum dicit: amplius autem passionum etc., ostendit quis sit inutilis auditor huius scientiae. Ubi considerandum est, quod scientia moralis docet homines sequi rationem, et discedere ab his in quae passiones animae inclinant, quae sunt concupiscentia, ira et similia. In quae quidem aliqui tendunt dupliciter. Uno modo ex electione: puta cum aliquis hoc proponit, ut concupiscentiae suae satisfaciat. Et hos vocat sectatores passionum; alio modo cum aliquis proponit quidem a noxiis delectationibus abstinere, vincitur tamen interdum impetu passionis, ut contra suum propositum, impetum passionis sequatur. Et talis vocatur incontinens. 39. Then [III, b], at “Furthermore,” he shows who is an unprofitable student of this science. Here we must consider that moral science teaches men to follow reason and to refrain from the things to which the passions incline, such as concupiscence, anger, and the like. Toward these, men are inclined in two ways. In one way by choice, for instance, when a man of set purpose intends to satisfy his concupiscence. Such a one he calls a slave of his emotions. In another way, when a man resolves to abstain from harmful pleasures but is sometimes overcome by the urge of passion, so that contrary to his resolution he follows the promptings of passion. A man of this type is said to be incontinent. Dicit ergo, quod ille qui est sectator passionum, inaniter, idest sine aliqua efficacia audiet hanc scientiam, et inutiliter, idest absque consecutione debiti finis. Finis enim huius scientiae non est sola cognitio, ad quam forte pervenire possent passionum sectatores. Sed finis huius scientiae est actus humanus, sicut et omnium scientiarum practicarum. Ad actus autem virtuosos non perveniunt, qui passiones sectantur. Et sic nihil differt quantum ad hoc quod arceantur ab auditu huius scientiae iuvenis aetate vel iuvenis moribus, scilicet passionum sectator, quia, sicut iuvenis aetate deficit a fine huius scientiae, qui est cognitio, ita ille qui est iuvenis moribus deficit a fine, qui est actio: non enim est defectus eius propter tempus, sed propter hoc quod vivit secundum passiones, et sequitur singula, ad quae passiones inclinant. Talibus autem fit inutilis cognitio huius scientiae; sicut etiam incontinentibus, qui non sequuntur scientiam, quam de moralibus habent. 40. He affirms then that the one who is ruled by the emotions will study this science in vain, that is, without any result and uselessly without attaining its proper end. The end of this science is not knowledge alone, which those enslaved to passion can perhaps gain. But the end of this science, as of all practical sciences, is human action. Now those who follow the emotions do not attain virtuous acts. So in regard to this it makes no difference whether the student of this science is immature in age or immature in character, that is, a slave of the emotions. The reason is that, as the person immature in age fails to achieve the end of this science that is knowledge, so the immature in character fails to achieve the end that is action-His deficiency is not due to time but to the fact that he lives according to his emotions, seeking everything to which the emotions incline. Now, for such men the knowledge of this science is useless; the same may be said of the incontinent who do not act in accord with their. knowledge of moral matters. Deinde cum dicit: secundum rationem autem etc., ostendit quis sit conveniens auditor huius scientiae. Et dicit, quod multum est utile scire de moralibus illis, qui secundum ordinem rationis implent omnia sua desideria et exterius operantur. 41. Then [III, c], at “But it will certainly,” he indicates the good student of this science. He says that it is very useful to have a knowledge of moral matters for those who regulate their desires and act in externals according to the dictates of reason. Ultimo autem epilogat ea quae dicta sunt in hoc prooemio, dicens quod tanta sint dicta prooemialiter de auditore, quod fuit ultimum; et quis sit modus demonstrandi, quod fuit medium; et quid proponimus, idest quid sit illud, de quo ista scientia principaliter intendit. 42. Last, in the conclusion he sums up what has been discussed in the introduction (1-41), stating that certain things have been said in a preliminary manner about the student—this was treated last; stating also what is the method of demonstrating—this was treated in the middle of the introduction; and last what is our purpose, namely, what is the principal aim of this science—this was treated first.
Opinions About Happiness
Chapter 4 I. FIRST HE EXPLAINS HIS INTENTION. — 43 λέγωμεν δ' ἀναλαβόντες, ἐπειδὴ πᾶσα γνῶσις καὶ προαίρεσις ἀγαθοῦ τινὸς ὀρέγεται, τί ἐστὶν οὗ λέγομεν τὴν πολιτικὴν ἐφίεσθαι καὶ τί τὸ πάντων ἀκρότατον τῶν πρακτῶν ἀγαθῶν. Since all knowledge and choice have some good for their objective, let us ask on resuming our inquiry what it is that we call the objective of political science? What is the highest good of all human actions? II. HE CARRIES IT OUT. A. He investigates the opinions of others about happiness. A’ He gives the opinions of others. 1. HE PRESENTS OPINIONS ABOUT THE ULTIMATE END OF HUMAN ACTIONS. a. He indicates the aspects of general agreement. — 44-45 ὀνόματι μὲν οὖν σχεδὸν ὑπὸ τῶν πλείστων ὁμολογεῖται· τὴν γὰρ εὐδαιμονίαν καὶ οἱ πολλοὶ καὶ οἱ χαρίεντες λέγουσιν, τὸ δ' εὖ ζῆν καὶ τὸ εὖ πράττειν ταὐτὸν ὑπολαμβάνουσι τῷ εὐδαιμονεῖν· περὶ δὲ τῆς εὐδαιμονίας, τί ἐστιν, ἀμφισβητοῦ σι καὶ οὐχ ὁμοίως οἱ πολλοὶ τοῖς σοφοῖς ἀποδιδόασιν. As to the name nearly all agree, for both the common people and the educated say it is happiness. They identify happiness with living well and acting well. b. He shows in what way there is disagreement. — 46-49 οἳ μὲν γὰρ τῶν ἐναργῶν τι καὶ φανερῶν, οἷον ἡδονὴν ἢ πλοῦτον ἢ τιμήν, ἄλλοι δ' ἄλλοπολλάκις δὲ καὶ ὁ αὐτὸς ἕτερον· νοσήσας μὲν γὰρ ὑγίειαν, πενόμενος δὲ πλοῦτον· συνειδότες δ' ἑαυτοῖς ἄγνοιαν τοὺς μέγα τι καὶ ὑπὲρ αὐτοὺς λέγοντας θαυμάζουσιν. ἔνιοι δ' ᾤοντο παρὰ τὰ πολλὰ ταῦτα ἀγαθὰ ἄλλο τι καθ' αὑτὸ εἶναι, ὃ καὶ τούτοις πᾶσιν αἴτιόν ἐστι τοῦ εἶναι ἀγαθά. But as to where happiness is to be found men are at variance. The multitude differs from the philosophers, for the people generally think that happiness consists in something apparent and obvious such as pleasure or riches or honors; some place it in one of these, others in another; and oftentimes even the same person shifts his position. For instance, the sick man thinks happiness is found in health, the poor man considers that it is found in riches, while men conscious of their own ignorance esteem those happy who give utterance to lofty ideas that are above their comprehension. Some philosophers [Platonists] were of the opinion that, over and above the many goods, there exists an absolute good which is the cause of goodness in all other things. 2. HE POINTS OUT HOW WE SHOULD EXAMINE OPINIONS OF THIS KIND. a. He shows which of these opinions we ought to investigate. — 50 ἁπάσας μὲν οὖν ἐξετάζειν τὰς δόξας ματαιότερον ἴσως ἐστίν, ἱκανὸν δὲ τὰς μάλιστα ἐπιπολαζούσας ἢ δοκούσας ἔχειν τινὰ λόγον. It is perhaps vain to examine all these opinions, and it will be sufficient to give special attention to those appearing probable on the surface or are thought by many to have some probability. b. He shows in what order we should do this. — 51-52 μὴ λανθανέτω δ' ἡμᾶς ὅτι διαφέρουσι& #957; οἱ ἀπὸ τῶν ἀρχῶν λόγοι καὶ οἱ ἐπὶ τὰς ἀρχάς. εὖ γὰρ καὶ ὁ Πλάτων ἠπόρει τοῦτο καὶ ἐζήτει, πότερον ἀπὸ τῶν ἀρχῶν ἢ ἐπὶ τὰς ἀρχάς ἐστιν ἡ ὁδός, ὥσπερ ἐν τῷ σταδίῳ ἀπὸ τῶν ἀθλοθετῶν ἐπὶ τὸ πέρας ἢ ἀνάπαλιν. ἀρκτέον μὲν γὰρ ἀπὸ τῶν γνωρίμων, ταῦτα δὲ διττῶς· τὰ μὲν γὰρ ἡμῖν τὰ δ' ἁπλῶς. ἴσως οὖν ἡμῖν γε ἀρκτέον ἀπὸ τῶν ἡμῖν γνωρίμων. In this matter we should be aware of the difference in arguments, some of which proceed from principles and others to principles. Previously Plato had learnedly discussed the subject when he examined the question whether we proceed from or to principles like athletes in the race-course running from or toward the judges. In either case we must start from things known. Now these are of two kinds, namely, things known to us and things known absolutely. Presumably then we should begin from what is known to us. c. He shows how the student should be disposed. — 53-54 διὸ δεῖ τοῖς ἔθεσιν ἦχθαι καλῶς τὸν περὶ καλῶν καὶ δικαίων καὶ ὅλως τῶν πολιτικῶν ἀκουσόμενο ν ἱκανῶς. ἀρχὴ γὰρ τὸ ὅτι, καὶ εἰ τοῦτο φαίνοιτο ἀρκούντως, οὐδὲν προσδεήσει τοῦ διότι· ὁ δὲ τοιοῦτος ἔχει ἢ λάβοι ἂν ἀρχὰς ῥᾳδίως. ᾧ δὲ μηδέτερον ὑπάρχει τούτων, ἀκουσάτω τῶν Ἡσιόδου·
- οὗτος μὲν πανάριστος ὃς αὐτὸς πάντα νοήσῃ,
- ἐσθλὸς δ' αὖ κἀκεῖνος ὃς εὖ εἰπόντι πίθηται.
- ὃς δέ κε μήτ' αὐτὸς νοέῃ μήτ' ἄλλου ἀκούων
- ἐν θυμῷ βάλληται, ὃ δ' αὖτ' ἀχρήιος ἀνήρ.
One who is going to devote himself seriously to the study of good and just deeds and to political affairs in general ought to have been accustomed to a virtuous life. This will serve as a principle and if it be adequate he will have no need to know the reasons for virtuous conduct. A student with this upbringing will discover working principles within himself or readily acquire them from someone else. The man, however, who can do neither of these things should listen to the verdict of Hesiod [ Works and Days, 293]. That man, the poet says, is best who understands everything by himself; and that man good who takes what is well 10 said by another. But he who neither himself understands nor takes to heart what he hears from another is indeed a useless fellow.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Dicamus ergo resumentes et cetera. Praemisso prooemio, hic Aristotiles accedit ad tractatum huius scientiae. Et dividitur in partes tres. In prima determinat de felicitate, quae est summum inter humana bona perducens ad hoc considerationem felicitatis quod est operatio secundum virtutem. In secunda parte determinat de virtutibus, ibi, si autem est felicitas operatio quaedam secundum virtutem et cetera. In tertia complet suum tractatum de felicitate, ostendens qualis et quae virtutis operatio sit felicitas. Et hoc in decimo libro, ibi: post haec autem de delectatione et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo dicit de quo est intentio. Secundo exequitur propositum, ibi: nomine quidem igitur et cetera. Dicit ergo primo resumendo quod supradictum est, quod cum omnis cognitio et electio desideret aliquod bonum, idest ordinetur ad aliquod bonum desideratum sicut in finem, dicendum est, quid sit illud bonum, ad quod ordinatur civilis scientia; quod scilicet est summum omnium operatorum, idest inter omnia ad quae opere humano perveniri potest. Haec enim duo supra dictum est oportere considerari de ultimo fine humanorum bonorum: scilicet quid sit, quod hic proponitur considerandum; et ad quam scientiam pertineat, quod supra in prooemio tractatum est. 43. Having finished the introduction, Aristotle here begins the treatise on the science itself. He divides the treatise into three parts. In the first part he investigates happiness, which is the supreme human good, and he comes to the conclusion from a study of the subject that happiness is activity flowing from virtue. In the second part [Lect. 19] he discusses virtues at “If then happiness is a kind of operation according to perfect virtue etc.” (B.1102 a 4). In the third part he completes his treatise on happiness, explaining which operation it is and of what nature. This he does in the tenth book (B.1172 a 19) at “After these matters we ought perhaps next to discuss pleasure.” In regard to the first he does two things. First  he explains his intention. Second [II], at “As to the name etc,,” he carries it out. He says first, resuming what he was investigating before (9-13), that since all knowledge and choice aim at some good, that is, are ordered to some desired good as an end, we must discuss the nature of that good to which political science is ordered. Such is the highest good of all actions, that is, the highest among those attainable by human operation. Moreover, it was said above (18) that these two notions must be studied about the ultimate end of human good; what it is—this is here proposed for consideration and to what science it belongs and this was treated above in the introduction (25-30). Deinde cum dicit: nomine quidem igitur etc., determinat de felicitate. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo prosequitur opiniones aliorum de felicitate. Secundo determinat de ipsa secundum propriam sententiam, ibi, rursus autem redeamus ad quaesitum bonum et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ponit opiniones aliorum de felicitate. Secundo inquirit de eis, ibi, nos autem dicamus unde discessimus et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ponit opiniones de ultimo fine humanorum. Secundo determinat qualiter de huiusmodi opinionibus sit inquirendum, ibi, omnes quidem igitur perscrutari et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ostendit in quo omnes conveniant. Secundo in quo differant, ibi, de felicitate autem, quae est et cetera. 44. Next [II], at “As to the name,” he treats happiness. He proceeds here in two steps. First [A] he investigates the opinions of others about happiness. Second [Lect.9], at “Let us return again to a consideration etc.” (B.1097 a 16), he states his own opinion. In regard to the initial point he does two things. First [A’] he gives the opinions of others about happiness. Second [Lect. 5; I], at “Let us return to the subject etc.” (B.1095 b 12), he examines these opinions. He handles the first point in two ways. Initially  he presents opinions about the ultimate end of human actions. Then , at “It is perhaps vain,” he points out how we should examine opinions of this kind. In regard to the first he does two things. He indicates the aspects of general agreement [1, a]; and then [1, b], at “But as to where happiness etc.,” he shows in what way there is disagreement. Ponit ergo primo duo, in quibus omnes conveniunt secundum ultimum finem. Primo quidem in nomine, quia tam multi, id est populares, quam etiam excellentes, id est sapientes, nominant summum humanorum bonorum felicitatem. Secundo quantum ad quamdam communem nominis rationem; quia omnes existimant bene vivere et bene operari (idem esse ei) quod est esse felicem. 45. In the beginning he presents two points on which there is general agreement about the ultimate end. First [1, a], at “As to the name,” he asserts that both the many, that is, the common people and the cultured or philosophers, name happiness the highest human good. Second, they have a common understanding of the term because all consider that living well and acting well are identified with being happy. Deinde cum dicit: de felicitate autem etc., ostendit in quo differunt opiniones hominum circa felicitatem. Et dicit quod de felicitate quid sit in speciali alterantur, idest diversificantur homines. Et hoc triplici differentia. Quarum prima accipitur secundum quod multitudo popularium non similiter in hoc sentit cum sapientibus. Nam populares existimant felicitatem esse aliquid eorum quae sunt in aperto et manifesto, ut sunt illa quae in sensibilibus considerantur, quae sola manifesta sunt multitudini, et adeo aperta, quod non indigent expositione reserante, sicut sunt voluptas, divitiae et honor et alia huiusmodi. Quid autem sapientes super hoc sentiant, ultimo ponet. 46. Then [II, b], at “But as to where happiness,” he shows in what respect the opinions of men differ about happiness. He affirms that especially about the nature of happiness men are at variance, i.e., hold different opinions. This difference is threefold. First of all the multitude does not think in this matter like the philosophers. People commonly consider that happiness consists in something apparent and obvious among the objects of sense, which alone are evident to the multitude and, therefore, so obvious as not to need exhaustive search-such as pleasure, riches, honor, and the like. The views of the philosophers on this point are given later (49). Secunda autem differentia est popularium adinvicem. Quorum alii aliud sensibile bonum aestimant esse felicitatem, sicut avari divitias, intemperati voluptates, ambitiosi honores. 47. The second difference is found among the common people themselves. Some of them place happiness in one sensible good, others in another. The avaricious place it in riches, the self-indulgent in pleasures, the ambitious in honors. Tertia autem differentia est eiusdem ad seipsum. Est enim conditio ultimi finis, ut sit maxime desideratum. Unde illud quod maxime desiderat homo aestimat esse felicitatem, indigentia autem alicuius boni auget eius desiderium. Unde aeger, qui indiget sanitate, iudicat ipsam summum bonum. Et pari ratione mendicus divitias. Et similiter illi, qui recognoscunt suam ignorantiam, admirantur quasi felices eos qui possunt dicere aliquid magnum, et quod eorum intellectum excedat. Et omnia ista pertinent ad opiniones multitudinis. 48. The third difference arises from the end in itself. Since it is characteristic of the ultimate end that it be greatly desired, people consider that to be happiness which is desired most of all. Now, need of a good increases the desire for it, and so the sick man who lacks health judges the supreme good to be health; the beggar looks upon riches in the same way. Likewise those who are conscious of their own ignorance esteem as happy others who give utterance to lofty ideas which are above the comprehension of the ignorant. All this pertains to the opinion of the multitude. Sed quidam sapientes, scilicet Platonici, praeter haec diversa bona sensibilia, aestimaverunt esse unum bonum quod est secundum seipsum, idest quod est ipsa essentia bonitatis separata, sicut et formam separatam hominis dicebant per se hominem, et quod omnibus bonis est causa quod sint bona, inquantum scilicet participant illud summum bonum. 49. But some among the philosophers, the Platonists were of the opinion that, over and above the many different sensible goods, there exists one which is absolute good and which is the separated essence of goodness itself. As the separated form of man was called by them “man in himself” so the separated good was “good in itself,” and this is the cause of the goodness of all other things as they partake of that highest good. Deinde cum dicit: omnes quidem igitur etc., ostendit qualiter oporteat inquirere de praedictis opinionibus. Et circa hoc tria facit. Primo ostendit de quibus harum opinionum oportet inquirere. Secundo quo ordine, ibi, non lateat autem nos et cetera. Tertio qualiter oporteat auditorem dispositum esse, ad hoc quod bene capiat ea quae dicentur, ibi, propter quod oportet consuetudinibus et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod perscrutari omnes opiniones quas aliqui habent de felicitate esset aliquid magis vanum, quam deceat philosophum; quia quaedam sunt omnino irrationabiles, sed sufficit illas opiniones maxime perscrutari, quae in superficie habent aliquam rationem, vel propter apparentiam aliquam, vel saltem propter opinionem multorum hoc existimantium. 50. Then , at “It is perhaps vain,” he shows how we should proceed in our investigation of the aforesaid opinions. He handles the discussion in three steps. First [2, a] he shows which of these opinions we ought to investigate. Second [2, b], at “In this matter we should etc.,” he shows in what order we should do this. Third [2, c] he shows how the student should be disposed so that he may properly understand what is taught. He says then that to examine all opinions men hold about happiness would be useless for a good philosopher, inasmuch as some of them are altogether unreasonable. But it suffices to examine at most the opinions that on the surface are probable either because they give that appearance or at least are considered to have weight by many. Deinde cum dicit: non lateat autem nos etc., ostendit quo ordine ratiocinandum sit de huiusmodi opinionibus, et simpliciter in tota materia morali. Et assignat differentiam in processu ratiocinandi. Quia quaedam rationes sunt, quae procedunt a principiis, id est a causis in effectus: sicut demonstrationes propter quid. Quaedam autem e converso ab effectibus ad causas sive principia, quae non demonstrant propter quid, sed solum quia ita est. Et hoc etiam Plato prius distinxit, inquirens utrum oporteat procedere a principiis vel ad principia. Et ponit exemplum de cursu stadiorum. Erant enim quidam athlothetae, idest propositi athletis currentibus in stadio, qui quidem athlothetae stabant in principio stadiorum. Quandoque igitur athletae incipiebant currere ab athlothetis et procedebant usque ad terminum, quandoque autem e converso. Et sic etiam est duplex ordo in processu rationis, ut dictum est. 51. Then [2, b], at “In this matter we should be aware,” he shows in what order we must discuss opinions of this sort and in general all moral matters. He points out a difference in the manner of reasoning. There are some argumentations proceeding from principles, that is, from causes to effects, such as demonstrations of the reasoned fact (propter quid). On the contrary, there are other argumentations proceeding from effects to causes or principles. These do not produce a demonstration of the reasoned fact but only of the fact (quia). This distinction was previously made by Plato when he inquired whether we should proceed from or to principles. Then he offers this example from the racecourse. In order to judge athletes running in a race certain agonothetes or judges were stationed at the beginning of the course. Sometimes the athletes started from the judges and ran to the finishing line, and sometimes they started from the end and ran toward the judges. Likewise there is a twofold order in the process of reasoning. Et ut accipiatur quo ordine oporteat procedere in qualibet materia, considerandum est quod semper oportet incipere a magis cognitis, quia per notiora devenimus ad ignota. Sunt autem aliqua notiora dupliciter. Quaedam quidem quoad nos, sicut composita et sensibilia, quaedam simpliciter et quoad naturam, scilicet simplicia et intelligibilia. Et quia nobis ratiocinando notitiam acquirimus, oportet quod procedamus ab his quae sunt magis nota nobis; et si quidem eadem sint nobis magis nota et simpliciter, tunc ratio procedit a principiis, sicut in mathematicis. Si autem sint alia magis nota simpliciter et alia quoad nos, tunc oportet e converso procedere, sicut in naturalibus et moralibus. 52. In order to know the order of procedure in any subject we should reflect that it is necessary to begin from what is better understood. Through things better known we arrive at a knowledge of things unknown. Now things are said to be better known in two ways. Some are better known in regard to us such as the composite and the sensible; others are better known absolutely and in themselves, as the simple and the intelligible. Because we acquire knowledge by reasoning, we must proceed from what is better known to us. Now if the better known absolutely are the same as the better known to us, the reason proceeds from principles as in mathematics. If, however, the better known absolutely are different from the better known to us, then we must use the effect-to-cause procedure as in the natural and moral sciences. Deinde cum dicit propter quod oportet etc., ostendit qualiter oportet esse dispositum talium auditorem. Et dicit, quod quia in moralibus oportet incipere ab his quae sunt magis nota quoad nos, id est a quibusdam effectibus consideratis circa actus humanos, oportet illum, qui sufficiens auditor vult esse moralis scientiae quod sit bene manuductus et exercitatus in consuetudinibus humanae vitae, idest de bonis exterioribus et iustis, idest de operibus virtutum, et universaliter de omnibus civilibus, sicut sunt leges et ordines politiarum et si qua alia sunt huiusmodi. Quia oportet in moralibus accipere, ut principium, quia ita est. Quod quidem accipitur per experientiam et consuetudinem; puta quod concupiscentiae per abstinentiam superantur. 53. Then [2, c], at “One who is going,” he shows how a student of such subjects should be disposed. He says that since in moral matters we ought to begin from what is better known to us, that is, from certain effects noted about human acts, a man who wishes to be a competent student of moral science must be well-informed and experienced in the ways of human living, that is about external good and just actions or works of virtue, and in general about all civil matters like laws and political affairs and other things of this sort. The reason for this is that in moral matters we must take as a principle that a thing is so. For example, we accept from experience and custom that concupiscence is restrained by fasting. Et si hoc sit manifestum alicui, non multum necessarium est ei ad operandum cognoscere propter quid, sicut et medico sufficit ad sanandum scire quod haec herba curat talem aegritudinem. Cognoscere autem propter quid requiritur ad sciendum, quod principaliter intenditur in scientiis speculativis. Talis autem, qui scilicet est expertus in rebus humanis, vel per seipsum habet principia operabilium, quasi per se ea considerans, vel de facili suscipit ea ab alio. Ille vero cui neutrum horum convenit, audiat sententiam Hesiodi poetae qui dixit quod iste est optimus qui scilicet potest per seipsum intelligere. Et ille etiam est bonus qui bene recipit quae ab alio dicuntur. Ille autem, qui neque per seipsum potest intelligere, neque alium audiens potest in animo reponere, est inutilis, quantum scilicet ad acquisitionem scientiae. 54. If this is obvious to someone it is not so necessary for him in acting to understand the total explanation. Thus to effect a cure a physician need know only that this medicine cures a particular malady. But to know the reason, we must have a scientific knowledge that is sought chiefly in speculative sciences. Now one who is skilled in human affairs either discovers working principles for himself and sees them as self-evident, or he readily acquires them from someone else. But a man about whom neither of these things can be correctly said should listen to the verdict of the poet Hesiod. He calls that man best who can understand by himself, and that man good who takes what is said by another. But the man who is capable neither of understanding by himself nor of bearing in mind what he hears from another is useless as far as acquiring a science is concerned.
Examination of the Opinions
Chapter 5 I. HE EXAMINES THE OPINION OF THOSE DISCUSSING HAPPINESS FROM THE MORAL POINT OF VIEW. A. He lays down a notion that opinions on the subject have in common. — 55 ἡμεῖς δὲ λέγωμεν ὅθεν παρεξέβημεν. τὸ γὰρ ἀγαθὸν καὶ τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν οὐκ ἀλόγως ἐοίκασιν ἐκ τῶν βίων ὑπολαμβάνειν οἱ μὲν πολλοὶ καὶ φορτικώτατοι τὴν ἡδονήν· Let us return to the subject from which we have digressed. Some seem to think, not without reason, that the supreme good called happiness is a good belonging to this life. B. He begins to investigate the variety of opinions. A’ He examines the opinions that seem more likely to be true. 1. HE EXAMINES THE OPINION THAT PLACES HAPPINESS IN... A LIFE OF PLEASURE. a. He presents the opinion. — 56-57 διὸ καὶ τὸν βίον ἀγαπῶσι τὸν ἀπολαυστικόν. Now, most men, including some very eminent persons, place happiness in pleasure and so logically prefer a sensual life. b. He distinguishes three types of life. — 58-59 τρεῖς γάρ εἰσι μάλιστα οἱ προύχοντες, ὅ τε νῦν εἰρημένος καὶ ὁ πολιτικὸς καὶ τρίτος ὁ θεωρητικός. There are indeed three very prominent types of life: that just mentioned, another called public life, and last the contemplative life. c. He examines the truth of the opinion presented. i. He disproves it. — 60 οἱ μὲν οὖν πολλοὶ παντελῶς ἀνδραποδώδεις φαίνονται βοσκημάτων βίον προαιρούμενοι, The majority of men seem quite bestial in choosing to live a life of pleasure. ii. He advances a reason why some are drawn to this life. — 61 τυγχάνουσι δὲ λόγου διὰ τὸ πολλοὺς τῶν ἐν ταῖς ἐξουσίαις ὁμοιοπαθεῖν Σαρδαναπάλλῳ. They justify their choice on the plea that many in high places share the tastes of Sardanapalus. 2. HE EXAMINES THE OPINION THAT PLACES HAPPINESS IN THE THINGS PERTAINING TO PUBLIC LIFE. a. In regard to honor. i. Presenting the opinion, he notes... — 62 οἱ δὲ χαρίεντες καὶ πρακτικοὶ τιμήν· Men of superior refinement however, and those occupied in the active life, place happiness in honor, ii. He offers a reason for this opinion. — 63 τοῦ γὰρ πολιτικοῦ βίου σχεδὸν τοῦτο τέλος. for honor seems to be nearly the whole purpose of public life. iii. He disproves this opinion. x. FIRST (REASON). — 64 — φαίνεται δ' ἐπιπολαιότερον εἶναι τοῦ ζητουμένου· δοκεῖ γὰρ ἐν τοῖς τιμῶσι μᾶλλον εἶναι ἢ ἐν τῷ τιμωμένῳ, τἀγαθὸν δὲ οἰκεῖόν τι καὶ δυσαφαίρετον εἶναι μαντευόμεθα. But this seems too superficial to be the good we are looking for. Honor consists in the action of those rendering it rather than anything in the power of the person honored; while happiness certainly should be a good proper to man and a thing not easily taken from him. y. SECOND REASON. — 65 ἔτι δ' ἐοίκασι τὴν τιμὴν διώκειν ἵνα πιστεύσωσιν ἑαυτοὺς ἀγαθοὺς εἶναι· ζητοῦσι γοῦν ὑπὸ τῶν φρονίμων τιμᾶσθαι, καὶ παρ' οἷς γινώσκονται, καὶ ἐπ' ἀρετῇ· δῆλον οὖν ὅτι κατά γε τούτους ἡ ἀρετὴ κρείττων. Another reason is that men appear to seek honor to convince themselves of their own good qualities. They strive to be honored by the prudent, by those who know them best and for their virtue. Obviously then, in their opinion, virtue is a better thing than honor. b. In regard to virtue. i. The opinion. — 66 τάχα δὲ καὶ μᾶλλον ἄν τις τέλος τοῦ πολιτικοῦ βίου ταύτην ὑπολάβοι. From this someone may conclude that virtue rather than honor is the end of public life. ii. He rejects this (first). — 67 φαίνεται δὲ ἀτελεστέρα καὶ αὕτη· δοκεῖ γὰρ ἐνδέχεσθαι καὶ καθεύδειν ἔχοντα τὴν ἀρετὴν ἢ ἀπρακτεῖν διὰ βίου, But apparently virtue too is lacking in perfection because a man may have a habit of virtue when he is asleep or when he has no opportunity to exercise its acts for a lifetime. iii. He gives the second reason. — 68 καὶ πρὸς τούτοις κακοπαθεῖν καὶ ἀτυχεῖν τὰ μέγιστα· τὸν δ' οὕτω ζῶντα οὐδεὶς ἂν εὐδαιμονίσειεν, εἰ μὴ θέσιν διαφυλάττων. καὶ περὶ μὲν τούτων ἅλις· ἱκανῶς γὰρ καὶ ἐν τοῖς ἐγκυκλίοις εἴρηται περὶ αὐτῶν. Moreover, he may be subject to evils and very often may be ill-favored by fortune. No one would call such a man happy, unless he were merely defending an argumentative position. Enough has now been said, for we treated the subject sufficiently in the Encyclis. 3. HE MENTIONS THE CONTEMPLATIVE LIFE. — 69 τρίτος δ' ἐστὶν ὁ θεωρητικός, ὑπὲρ οὗ τὴν ἐπίσκεψιν ἐν τοῖς ἑπομένοις ποιησόμεθα. Later on we shall investigate the third type of life, the contemplative. B’ He examines an opinion rather remote from the truth. 1. HE EXAMINES ANOTHER OPINION... WHICH PLACES HAPPINESS IN MONEY. a. He rejects it... first. — 70-71 ὁ δὲ χρηματιστὴς βίαιός τις ἐστίν, As to the accumulator of riches, he lives a life of constraint; b. He gives the second reason. καὶ ὁ πλοῦτος δῆλον ὅτι οὐ τὸ ζητούμενον ἀγαθόν· χρήσιμον γὰρ καὶ ἄλλου χάριν. διὸ μᾶλλον τὰ πρότερον λεχθέντα τέλη τις ἂν ὑπολάβοι· δι' αὑτὰ γὰρ ἀγαπᾶται. φαίνεται δ' οὐδ' ἐκεῖνα· καίτοι πολλοὶ λόγοι πρὸς αὐτὰ καταβέβληνται. ταῦτα μὲν οὖν ἀφείσθω. and riches themselves are not the good we seek, for they are merely useful and sought for the sake of something else. Rather therefore the things previously treated are considered ends, since they are desired for themselves. Yet even these are not the supreme good and happiness, although many arguments have been marshalled to prove this. But these discussions must be terminated now.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Nos autem dicamus unde discessimus et cetera. Postquam philosophus recitavit opiniones aliorum diversas de felicitate, hic inquirit veritatem de praedictis opinionibus. Et primo inquirit de opinione loquentium de felicitate moraliter, qui scilicet ponebant in aliquo bonorum huius vitae felicitatem. Secundo inquirit de opinione loquentium de felicitate non moraliter, ponentium scilicet felicitatem in quodam bono separato, ibi, quod autem universale et cetera. Circa primum duo facit: primo proponit id quod est commune omnibus huiusmodi opinionibus; secundo inquirit de diversitate opinionum. Quia ergo videbatur philosophus digressionem fecisse a principali proposito, dum modum procedendi determinavit, redit ad principale propositum, unde discesserat, id est ad opiniones de felicitate. Et dicit, quod non irrationabiliter aliqui videntur existimare quod finale bonum quod felicitas dicitur sit aliquid ex his quae pertinent ad hanc vitam, scilicet humanam. Est enim finis omnium operum vitae. Ea vero quae sunt ad finem proportionantur fini; unde probabile est quod felicitas sit aliquid de numero bonorum pertinentium ad hanc vitam. Sed de hoc infra dicetur quid verum sit. 55. After the Philosopher has recounted the different opinions about happiness, he begins to investigate the truth of these opinions. First [I] he examines the opinion of, those discussing happiness from the moral point of view who place happiness in some good of this life. Second [Lect. 6], at “Perhaps it will be better” (B.1096 a 12), he examines the opinion of those who do not discuss happiness from the moral point of view but place it in some separated good. In regard to the first he does two things. He lays down a, notion [A] that opinions on this subject have in common; and next [B], at “Now, most men,” he begins to investigate the variety of opinions. Then, because the Philosopher seemed to have made a digression from his principal purpose while he was determining the mode of procedure, he returns to the point whence he had digressed, that is, to the opinions about happiness. He asserts that some seem to think, not without reason, that the final good called happiness is a good belonging to this life on the purely human level. This is the goal of all the works of life. Now, means are proportionate to that end. Hence it is probable that happiness is among the number of goods belonging to this life. But what the truth may be in this matter will be indicated later (60, 64, 65, 70-72). Deinde cum dicit: multi quidem et gravissimi etc., inquirit veritatem circa ea in quibus diversificantur. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo inquirit de opinionibus, quae magis videntur accedere ad veritatem. In secunda de opinione recedente magis a veritate, ibi, pecuniosus autem violentus quis et cetera. Circa primum tria facit. Primo inquirit de opinione ponente felicitatem in his quae pertinent ad vitam voluptuosam; in secunda de opinionibus ponentium felicitatem in his quae pertinent ad vitam civilem, ibi, qui autem excellentes et operativi et cetera. In tertia facit mentionem de vita contemplativa, ibi, tertia autem est et cetera. Circa primum tria facit. Primo proponit opinionem. Secundo ex incidenti distinguit vitas, ibi, tres enim sunt et cetera. Tertio inquirit de veritate propositae opinionis, ibi: multi quidem igitur et cetera. 56. Next [B], at “Now, most men,” he searches for the truth about the things on which the opinions differ. In regard to this he does two things. First [A’] he examines the opinions that seem more likely to be true. Second [B’], at “As to the accumulator of riches etc.,” he examines an opinion rather remote from the truth. In regard to the first he does three things. First  he examines the opinion placing happiness in the things that pertain to a life of pleasure. Second , at “Men of superior refinement etc.,” he examines the opinion placing happiness in the things pertaining to public life. Third , at “Later on we shall investigate etc.,” he mentions the contemplative life. In regard to the first he does three things. First [A’, 1, a] he presents the opinion. Second [A’, 1, b], at “There are indeed three etc.,” he distinguishes three types of life without elaborating on them. Third [A’, 1, c], at “The majority of men etc.,” he examines the truth of the opinion presented. Dicit ergo primo, quod inter bona huius vitae, quidam eligunt voluptatem, in ea felicitatem ponentes. Et hi quidem sunt non solum multi, idest populares homines, qui fere omnes ad voluptates declinant; sed etiam quidam qui sunt gravissimi, vel propter auctoritatem scientiae et doctrinae, vel etiam propter vitae honestatem. Nam etiam Epicuri, qui voluptatem summum bonum aestimabant, diligenter colebant virtutes, sed tamen propter voluptatem, ne scilicet per contraria vitia eorum voluptas impediretur. Gula enim per immoderantiam cibi corporis dolores generat, propter furtum aliquis carceri mancipatur. Et ita diversa vitia diversimode voluptatem impediunt. Et quia ultimus finis est maxime diligibilis, ideo illi qui ponunt voluptatem summum bonum, maxime diligunt vitam voluptuosam. 57. He says then in the first place that some men, from the goods of this life, choose pleasure and place happiness in it. They include not only the majority or the common people who by and large favor pleasure, but also persons eminent either in knowledge and teaching or in uprightness of life. Even the Epicureans, who considered pleasure the highest good, carefully cultivated the virtues. They did so, however, on account of pleasure, that is, for fear their pleasure would be hindered by means of contrary vices. The vice of gluttony, for instance, causes bodily suffering through excessive eating; because of theft a man is thrown into prison. So different vices are an impediment to pleasure in different ways. Since then the ultimate end is exceedingly delectable, they who make pleasure the highest good intensely love the life of pleasure. Deinde cum dicit: tres enim sunt maxime etc., distinguit triplicem vitam: scilicet voluptuosam quae nunc dicta est, et civilem et contemplativam, et has dicit esse maxime excellentes. Ad cuius evidentiam sciendum est, quod sicut infra in IX dicetur, unusquisque id ad quod maxime afficitur reputat vitam suam, sicut philosophus philosophari, venator venari, et sic de aliis. Et quia homo maxime afficitur ad ultimum finem, necesse est, quod vitae diversificentur secundum diversitatem ultimi finis. Finis autem habet rationem boni. Bonum autem in tria dividitur, scilicet in utile, delectabile et honestum. Quorum duo, scilicet delectabile et honestum, habent rationem finis, quia utrumque est appetibile propter seipsum. Honestum autem dicitur, quod est bonum secundum rationem, quod quidem habet aliquam delectationem annexam. Unde delectabile, quod contra honestum dividitur, est delectabile secundum sensum. Ratio autem est et speculativa et practica. 58. Then [A’, 1, b], at “There are indeed three,” he distinguishes three types of life: the sensual just mentioned, the public, and the contemplative. These he calls the most prominent types. For evidence of this we must now bear in mind what will later be discussed in the ninth book (1944-1949), that every man thinks his life to be that to which he is most strongly drawn, as the philosopher to philosophizing, the hunter to hunting, and so on. Because man is most strongly drawn to the last end, it is necessary that the types of life be distinguished according to the diversity of the ultimate end. Now the end has the nature of good, and good is threefold: the useful, the pleasurable, and the virtuous or honorable. Two of these, namely, the pleasurable and the virtuous or honorable, have the nature of end because both are desirable for their own sake. That indeed is called virtuous which is good according to reason, and this has pleasure attached to it. Hence the pleasurable, as distinguished from the virtuous, is so called in reference to the senses. Reason, we must remember, is both speculative and practical. Vita igitur voluptuosa dicitur quae finem constituit in voluptate sensus, vita vero civilis dicitur, quae finem constituit in bono practicae rationis, puta in exercitio virtuosorum operum. Vita autem contemplativa, quae constituit finem in bono rationis speculativae, scilicet in contemplatione veritatis. 59. Therefore, that life is called sensual which fixes its end in the pleasures of the senses; and that public which fixes its end in the good of the practical reason, for example, in the exercise of virtuous deeds; and that contemplative which fixes its end in the good of the speculative reason or in the contemplation of truth. Deinde cum dicit: multi quidem igitur etc., inquirit de praedicta opinione. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo improbat eam. Secundo inducit rationem inducentem ad ipsam, ibi, adipiscuntur autem et cetera. Circa primum considerandum est, quod vita voluptuosa, quae ponit finem circa delectationem sensus, necesse habet ponere finem circa maximas delectationes, quae sequuntur naturales operationes, quibus scilicet natura conservatur secundum individuum per cibum et potum et secundum speciem per commixtionem sexuum. Huiusmodi autem delectationes sunt communes hominibus et bestiis: unde multitudo hominum ponentium finem in huiusmodi voluptatibus videntur esse omnino bestiales, quasi eligentes talem vitam quasi optimam vitam in qua pecudes nobiscum communicant. Si enim in hoc felicitas hominis consisteret, pari ratione bestiae felices essent fruentes delectatione cibi et coitus. Si igitur felicitas est proprium bonum hominis, impossibile est quod in his consistat felicitas. 60. Next [A’, 1, c], at “The majority of men,” he examines the opinion cited above. In regard to this he does two things. First [c, i] he disproves it. Second (c, ii], at “They justify their choice etc.,” he advances a reason why some are drawn to this life. In regard to the first we must consider that the sensual life, which fixes its end in sense pleasure, necessarily has to place that end in those very intense pleasures following from the natural operations by which the individual is preserved by eating and drinking and the race by sexual intercourse. Now pleasures of this kind are found in both men and beasts. It follows then that the multitude of men who fix their end in such pleasures seem quite bestial in choosing a life which even the pigs enjoy. If the happiness of man would consist in this, dumb animals enjoying the pleasure of food and sexual intercourse would have to be called happy for the same reason. Assuming that happiness is a characteristically human good, it cannot possibly consist in these things. Deinde cum dicit adipiscuntur autem etc., ponit rationem inducentem ad hanc opinionem. Et dicit, quod illi qui ponunt hanc opinionem, accipiunt pro ratione quod multi illorum qui sunt in maximis potestatibus constituti, sicut reges et principes, qui felicissimi apud vulgus reputantur, similia patiuntur cuidam regi Assyriorum nomine Sardanapalo, qui fuit totaliter voluptatibus deditus, et ex hoc reputant voluptatem esse optimum, utpote quae ab optimatibus maxime diligitur. 61. Then [c, ii], at “They justify their choice,” he gives the reason why some hold this opinion. He says that the reason they offer is that many in high places, like kings and princes who are considered very happy by the common people, share the tastes of a certain Assyrian king named Sardanapalus who was much given to sensuality. On this account it is thought that pleasure is something very good since it is a thing highly esteemed by the great. Deinde cum dicit: qui autem excellentes etc., inquirit de opinionibus pertinentibus ad vitam activam sive civilem. Et primo quantum ad honorem. Secundo quantum ad virtutem, ibi, forsitan autem et magis et cetera. Et hoc rationabiliter. Nam vita civilis sive activa, intendit bonum honestum. Dicitur autem honestum, quasi honoris status, unde ad hoc pertinere videtur et ipse honor, et virtus, quae est honoris causa. Circa primum tria facit. Primo proponit opinionem. Et dicit quod illi qui sunt excellentes, idest virtuosi et operativi, idest dediti vitae activae, ponunt felicitatem in honore. 62. At “Men of superior refinement”  he investigates opinions concerning the active or public life. First [2, a] he does this in regard to honor; and second [2, b], at “From this someone etc.,” in regard to virtue. This is a reasonable procedure, for the active or public life aims at the honorable good. Now it is called honorable as pertaining to the state of honor. Hence both honor itself and virtue, which is the cause of honor, appear to belong to it. In regard to the first he does three things. First [2, a, i], in presenting the opinion, he notes that persons of superior refinement, namely, the virtuous and those occupied in the active life, place happiness in honor. Secundo ibi: civilis enim etc., inducit ad hoc rationem. Quia fere totius civilis vitae finis videtur esse honor, qui redditur bene operantibus in vita civili quasi summum praemium. Et ideo colentibus civilem vitam probabile videtur felicitatem in honore consistere. 63. Second [2, a, ii], at “for honor seems,” he offers a reason for this: the sole purpose of public life appears to be honor which is rendered as a reward to the politically successful. Therefore, for those engaged in public life happiness probably seems to consist in honor. Tertio ibi: videtur autem magis etc., improbat hanc opinionem duabus rationibus. Quarum primam ponit dicens, quod ante assignatam veram rationem felicitatis divinamus, id est coniicimus felicitatem esse quoddam bonum, quod est proprium ipsi felici, utpote ad ipsum maxime pertinens, et quod difficile ab eo aufertur. Hoc autem non convenit honori, quia honor magis videtur consistere in actu quodam honorantis et in eius potestate, quam ipsius etiam qui honoratur. Ergo honor est quiddam magis extrinsecum et superficiale quam bonum quod quaeritur, scilicet felicitas. 64. Third [2, a, iii], at “But this seems” he disproves this opinion by two reasons. In the first [iii, x] of these he says that in a way we divine the true nature of happiness, that is, we surmise happiness to be a good proper to the happy man, a thing belonging preeminently to him and taken from him with difficulty. But this is not true of honor which seems rather to consist in the action of the one rendering the honor, and to be in his power rather than in the power of the one honored. Therefore honor is something more extrinsic and superficial than the good we are seeking, which is happiness. Secundam rationem ponit ibi, amplius autem videntur et cetera. Quae talis est. Felicitas est quiddam optimum quod non quaeritur propter aliud. Sed honore est aliquid melius propter quod quaeritur. Ad hoc enim homines videntur honorem quaerere ut ipsi firmam opinionem accipiant de se ipsis quod sint boni et quod ab aliis hoc credatur, et ideo quaerunt homines honorari a prudentibus, qui sunt recti iudicii, et apud eos a quibus cognoscuntur, qui melius possunt de eis iudicare. Et quaerunt honorari de virtute, per quam aliquis est bonus, ut in secundo dicetur. Et sic virtus est aliquid melius honore propter quam honor quaeritur. Non ergo in honore consistit felicitas. 65. He gives the second reason at “Another reason” [iii, y]. Happiness is some very good thing which is not sought on account of another. But there is something better than honor, namely, that on account of which honor is sought. Men appear to seek honor in order to confirm the solid opinion they have formed of themselves that they are good men and that they may be assured of this by the judgment of others. They look, therefore, for honor from prudent men with correct judgment and from those who know them best and can be better judges. Hence they seek to be honored for their virtue, which is the source of man’s good, as will be shown in the second book (307-308). So virtue, for whose sake honor is sought, is a better thing than honor. It follows then that happiness does not consist in honor. Deinde cum dicit: forsitan autem etc., inquirit de opinione ponentium felicitatem in virtute. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo proponit opinionem. Et dicit, quod forsitan aliquis existimabit magis esse finem civilis vitae virtutem quam honorem, ratione praedicta. 66. Then [2, b], at “From this someone,” he investigates the opinion of those who place happiness in virtue. In regard to this he does two things. First [2, b, i] he states the opinion and says that perhaps someone will think, by reason of what was just said, that virtue rather than honor is the end of public life. Secundo ibi: videtur autem imperfectior etc., improbat eam duplici ratione. Quarum prima talis est. Felicitas videtur esse quoddam perfectissimum bonum. Sed virtus non est talis. Invenitur enim quandoque sine operatione quae est perfectio secunda, ut patet in his qui dormiunt et tamen habitum virtutis habent, et in his qui habent habitum virtutis et in tota vita sua non occurrit eis facultas operandi secundum illam virtutem, ut maxime patet in magnanimitate et magnificentia, quia scilicet aliquis pauper habet habitum huiusmodi, qui tamen nunquam potest magnifica facere. Non ergo virtus est idem felicitati. 67. Second [2, b, ii], at “But apparently,” he rejects this for two reasons. The first is that happiness seems to be a most perfect good. But virtue is not of such a nature, for sometimes it is found without the perfection of activity, as we see in those who are asleep and yet have the habit of virtue. It is possible, too, that a man may have the habit of virtue, but for lack of opportunity not perform a single act of a particular virtue during his whole life. This is particularly evident regarding magnanimity and magnificence, virtues perhaps possessed by a poverty-stricken person who is never able to perform great deeds. Therefore virtue is not the same as happiness. Secundam rationem ponit ibi et cum his mala pati et cetera. Quae talis est. Contingit aliquem habentem habitum virtutis (mala pati) et infortunatum esse. Sed nullus dicet talem esse felicem, nisi aliquis, qui velit pertinaciter positionem suam defendere contra rationes manifestas; ergo felicitas non est idem virtuti. Et hoc dicit ad propositum satis esse. Sed de his sufficienter dictum est in encycliis, idest in quibusdam circularibus versibus quos de felicitate composuit. 68. He gives the second reason at “Moreover he may be” [2, b, iii]. It is this. It happens that one who has the habit of virtue may be ill-favored by fortune. Who will call such a man happy except someone obstinately defending a thesis against the plain truth? Therefore happiness is not the same as virtue. This, he says, is sufficient for his purpose. Enough has been said on the subject in his Encyclis, that is, in certain learned verses that Aristotle composed on happiness. Deinde cum dicit: tertia autem etc., facit mentionem de vita contemplativa. Et dicit quod de tertia vita, scilicet contemplativa, perscrutabitur inferius, scilicet in decimo. 69. Then , at “Later on we shall investigate,” he mentions the contemplative life, saying that it will be investigated later on in the tenth book (2086-2125). Deinde cum dicit: pecuniosus autem etc., inquirit de quadam alia opinione minus rationabili, quae ponit felicitatem in aliquo, quod habet rationem boni utilis, scilicet in pecunia. Et hoc repugnat rationi ultimi finis. Nam utile dicitur aliquid ex hoc, quod ordinatur ad finem. Quia tamen pecunia habet universalem utilitatem respectu omnium bonorum temporalium, ideo probabilitatem quamdam habet haec opinio, quae in pecuniis ponit felicitatem. 70. At “As to the accumulator of riches” [B’, i], he examines another opinion, less probable, which places happiness in a thing which has the nature of a useful good, money. But this is incompatible with the nature of an ultimate end, for a thing is called useful because it is ordered to an end. However, since money has an over-all utility in respect of temporal goods, the opinion that places happiness in money has some probability. Improbat autem eam Aristoteles duplici ratione. Quarum prima talis est. Pecunia per violentiam acquiritur et per violentiam perditur. Sed hoc non convenit felicitati, quae est finis voluntariarum operationum, ergo felicitas non consistit in pecuniis. 71. But he rejects it for two reasons [B’, i, a]. The first is that money is acquired under coercion and is parted with under coercion. But this is not in keeping with happiness, which is the goal of voluntary operations. Consequently happiness does not consist in money. Secundam rationem ponit ibi et divitiae non sunt et cetera. Quae talis est. Nos quaerimus felicitatem tamquam aliquod bonum quod non quaeritur propter aliud. Sed pecunia quaeritur propter aliud, quia habet rationem boni utilis, ut dictum est. Ergo in ipsa non consistit felicitas. 72. He gives the second reason [B’, 1, b] at “and riches themselves.” It is this. We look for happiness as a good that is not sought for something else. But money is sought for something beyond itself since it is by its nature a useful good, as was just said (70). Therefore happiness does not consist in money. Concludit autem ulterius quod illa quae supra dicta sunt, scilicet voluptas, honor et virtus, possunt existimari ultimi fines: quia propter se requiruntur, ut dictum est, et tamen neque etiam illa sunt ultimus finis ut ostensum est, quamvis a diversis sint multi sermones compositi, ad asserendum felicitatem in praedictis bonis consistere. Sed istae opiniones sunt de cetero relinquendae. 73. A further conclusion notes that pleasure, honor, and virtue, all of which were treated above (57-72), can be considered ultimate ends at least in the sense that they are sought for themselves, as was said (57, 61, 63, 70)However, the ultimate end is not to be found in these, as has been shown (57-72), although many arguments have been marshalled by various philosophers to prove that happiness consists in these goods. But these discussions must be terminated.
Happiness and a Separated Good
Chapter 6 A. He disproves the opinion of those placing it in a separated good. 1. HE SHOWS THE NECESSITY OF DISCUSSING THIS OPINION. a. He suggests the advantage of this inquiry. — 74 τὸ δὲ καθόλου βέλτιον ἴσως ἐπισκέψασθαι καὶ διαπορῆσαι πῶς λέγεται, Perhaps it will be better to investigate thoroughly the existence of the universal good and to inquire about its nature, b. He points out... an unpleasant aspect of the investigation. — 75 καίπερ προσάντους τῆς τοιαύτης ζητήσεως γινομένης διὰ τὸ φίλους ἄνδρας εἰσαγαγεῖν τὰ εἴδη. even if the investigation has become unpleasant owing to the fact that the doctrine of ideas was introduced by good friends. c. He shows that this should not deter us from seeking the truth. — 76-78 δόξειε δ' ἂν ἴσως βέλτιον εἶναι καὶ δεῖν ἐπὶ σωτηρίᾳ γε τῆς ἀληθείας καὶ τὰ οἰκεῖα ἀναιρεῖν, ἄλλως τε καὶ φιλοσόφους ὄντας· ἀμφοῖν γὰρ ὄντοιν φίλοιν ὅσιον προτιμᾶν τὴν ἀλήθειαν. However, it seems indeed better, and in fact especially obligatory on philosophers, to sacrifice even the rights of friendship for the sake of truth. While it is commendable to have love for both, we ought to honor truth as sacred above friends. 2. HE BEGINS TO DISPROVE IT. a. He shows there is no one common idea or form of good. i. There cannot be one common idea of good. x. THE FIRST... ARGUMENT. — 79-80 οἱ δὴ κομίσαντες τὴν δόξαν ταύτην οὐκ ἐποίουν ἰδέας ἐν οἷς τὸ πρότερον καὶ ὕστερον ἔλεγον, διόπερ οὐδὲ τῶν ἀριθμῶν ἰδέαν κατεσκεύαζον· τὸ δ' ἀγαθὸν λέγεται καὶ ἐν τῷ τί ἐστι καὶ ἐν τῷ ποιῷ καὶ ἐν τῷ πρός τι, τὸ δὲ καθ' αὑτὸ καὶ ἡ οὐσία πρότερον τῇ φύσει τοῦ πρός τι παραφυάδι γὰρ τοῦτ' ἔοικε καὶ συμβεβηκότι τοῦ ὄντος· ὥστ' οὐκ ἂν εἴη κοινή τις ἐπὶ τούτοις ἰδέα. Those who hold this opinion did not postulate ideas in which priority and posteriority were found. On this account they made no provision for an idea of numbers. Now good is found in the category of substance and quality and relation. But being in itself, i.e., substance, is naturally prior to being in reference to something else, for the latter is likened to an offspring of being and an accident of it. Therefore there will not be any common idea for these. y. HE LAYS DOWN THE SECOND REASON. — 81 ἔτι δ' ἐπεὶ τἀγαθὸν ἰσαχῶς λέγεται τῷ ὄντι καὶ γὰρ ἐν τῷ τί λέγεται, οἷον ὁ θεὸς καὶ ὁ νοῦς, καὶ ἐν τῷ ποιῷ αἱ ἀρεταί, καὶ ἐν τῷ ποσῷ τὸ μέτριον, καὶ ἐν τῷ πρός τι τὸ χρήσιμον, καὶ ἐν χρόνῳ καιρός, καὶ ἐν τόπῳ δίαιτα καὶ ἕτερα τοιαῦτα, δῆλον ὡς οὐκ ἂν εἴη κοινόν τι καθόλου καὶ ἕν· οὐ γὰρ ἂν ἐλέγετ' ἐν πάσαις ταῖς κατηγορίαις, ἀλλ' ἐν μιᾷ μόνῃ. Furthermore, good is convertible with being. For good is predicated of substance such as God and intellect. It is predicated of quality such as virtues, of quantity such as the mean, of relation such as the useful, of time such as the opportune, of place such as a summerhouse, and so on. Hence it is obvious that one common idea of good that is universal does not exist. Otherwise good would not be found in every category but in one alone. z. HE GIVES THE THIRD REASON. — 82 ἔτι δ' ἐπεὶ τῶν κατὰ μίαν ἰδέαν μία καὶ ἐπιστήμη, καὶ τῶν ἀγαθῶν ἁπάντων ἦν ἂν μία τις ἐπιστήμη· νῦν δ' εἰσὶ πολλαὶ καὶ τῶν ὑπὸ μίαν κατηγορίαν, οἷον καιροῦ, ἐν πολέμῳ μὲν γὰρ στρατηγικὴ ἐν νόσῳ δ' ἰατρική, καὶ τοῦ μετρίου ἐν τροφῇ μὲν ἰατρικὴ ἐν πόνοις δὲ γυμναστική. Moreover, because a single science treats things failing under one idea, there would have to be a single science of all good things. But we have many sciences, even of things contained in one category like time, for the opportune is studied in war by strategy, in disease by medicine, and in exercise by gymnastics.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Quod autem universale et cetera. Postquam philosophus improbavit opiniones ponentium felicitatem in aliquo manifestorum bonorum, hic improbat opinionem ponentium felicitatem in quodam bono separato. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo ostendit quod necessarium est inquirere de hac opinione. Secundo incipit eam improbare, ibi, ferentes autem opinionem hanc et cetera. Circa primum tria facit. Primo proponit utilitatem huius inquisitionis. Secundo ostendit quid videatur huic inquisitioni repugnare, ibi: etsi obvia tali quaestione facta et cetera. Tertio ostendit, quod illud non debeat retrahere ab inquisitione huius veritatis ibi, videbitur autem utique melius et cetera. Circa primum considerandum est, quod illud bonum separatum in quo Platonici ponebant hominis felicitatem consistere, dicebant esse universale bonum per cuius participationem omnia bona dicuntur. Dicit ergo quod perscrutari de hoc universali bono an sit, et inquirere qualiter esse ponatur, forsitan est melius, quam inquirere de praemissis opinionibus; eius enim inquisitio magis est philosophica, utpote magis pertinens ad considerationem veri boni et ultimi finis quam praemissae, si ipsae opiniones secundum se considerentur. Si autem considerentur secundum quod pertinent ad propositum, inquirere de praemissis opinionibus, magis videtur fuisse conveniens proposito. Et ideo dixit forsitan, quod est adverbium dubitandi. 74. After the Philosopher has rejected the opinion of those who place happiness in one of the obvious goods, here [A] he disproves the opinion of those placing it in a separate good, In regard to this he does two things. First  he shows the necessity of discussing this opinion. Second  he begins to disprove it. in regard to the first he does three things. First [1, a] he suggests the advantage of this inquiry. Second [1, b], at “even if the investigation etc.,” he points out what may seem an unpleasant aspect of the investigation. Third [1, c], at “However, it seems etc.,” he shows that this should not deter us from seeking the truth. In regard to the first we must consider that the separated good, in which the Platonists asserted that man’s happiness consists, was called a universal good. By participation in it all things are said to be good. Hence he says that perhaps it is better to investigate thoroughly the existence of this universal good and to inquire what its nature is than to discuss the opinions mentioned before. The investigation of the good is more philosophical and more properly belongs to the discussion of the true good and the ultimate end than do the opinions considered in themselves. If, however, they be considered according to our stated intention of inquiring about the opinions mentioned above, it would seem to be more in agreement with our plan. On this account he uses “perhaps,” an adverb indicating doubt. Deinde cum dicit etsi obvia etc., ponit quid posset eum retrahere ab inquisitione talis opinionis. Et dicit, quod huius inquisitio est contraria suae voluntati, propter hoc quod erat introducta a suis amicis, scilicet a Platonicis. Nam ipse fuit Platonis discipulus. Improbando autem eius opinionem, videbatur eius honori derogare. Ideo autem potius hic hoc dicit quam in aliis libris, in quibus opinionem Platonis improbat, quia improbare opinionem amici non est contra veritatem, quae quaeritur principaliter in speculativis, est autem contra bonos mores, de quibus principaliter agitur in hoc libro. 75. Then [1, b], at “even if the investigation,” he states what might deter him from an investigation of this opinion. He says that the investigation is made reluctantly because the opinion was introduced by friends of his, the Platonists. He himself was a disciple of Plato, and by rejecting this opinion he might seem to disparage his teacher. He raises the point here rather than in his other works where he likewise rejects the opinion of Plato because the repudiation of the opinion of a friend is not contrary to truth, which is the principal object in speculative sciences. It is, however, contrary to good morals, the subject discussed in this book. Deinde cum dicit: videbitur autem utique etc., ostendit quod hoc eum non debet retrahere. Quia videbitur melius esse, idest magis honestum et ad bonos mores pertinens, et etiam omnino oportere ut homo non vereatur impugnare familiares suos pro salute veritatis. Est enim hoc adeo necessarium ad bonos mores, ut sine hoc virtus conservari non possit. Nisi enim homo veritatem familiaribus praeferret, consequens esset, quod homo falsa iudicia et falsa testimonia proferret pro defensione amicorum. Quod est contra virtutem. Et quamvis aliter, id est alia ratione pertinente ad omnes homines veritas sit praeferenda amicis, specialiter tamen hoc oportet facere philosophos, qui sunt professores sapientiae, quae est cognitio veritatis. 76. Then [1, c], at “However, it seems indeed better,” he shows that this consideration ought not to deter him. The reason is that it seems to be better, meaning more honorable and in agreement with good morals, and indeed obligatory, that a man should not hesitate to oppose his friends for the sake of truth. It is so necessary for good morals that without it virtue cannot be preserved. Unless a man prefer truth to his friends, it follows that he will make false judgment and bear false witness in their defense. This is contrary to virtue. While reason prescribes that all men should prefer truth to their friends, this holds in a special way for the philosophers whose calling is to study wisdom, which is knowledge of the truth. Quod autem oporteat veritatem praeferre amicis, ostendit hac ratione. Quia ei qui est magis amicus, magis est deferendum. Cum autem amicitiam habeamus ad ambo, scilicet ad veritatem et ad hominem, magis debemus veritatem amare quam hominem, quia hominem praecipue debemus amare propter veritatem et propter virtutem ut in VIII huius dicetur. Veritas autem est amicus superexcellens cui debetur reverentia honoris; est etiam veritas quiddam divinum, in Deo enim primo et principaliter invenitur. Et ideo concludit, quod sanctum est praehonorare veritatem hominibus amicis. 77. That truth should be preferred to friends he proves in this way. He is the greater friend for whom we ought to have the greater consideration. Although we should have friendship for both truth and our fellow man, we ought rather to love truth because we should love our fellow man especially on account of truth and virtue, as will be shown in the eighth book (1575-1577). Now truth is a most excellent friend of the sort to whom the homage of honor is due. Besides, truth is a divine thing, for it is found first and chiefly in God. He concludes, therefore, that it is virtuous to honor truth above friends. Dicit enim Andronicus Peripateticus, quod sanctitas est quae facit fideles et servantes ea quae ad Deum iusta. Haec etiam fuit sententia Platonis, qui reprobans opinionem Socratis magistri sui dixit quod oportet de veritate magis curare quam de aliquo alio; et alibi dicit: amicus quidem Socrates sed magis amica veritas; et in alio loco: de Socrate quidem parum est curandum, de veritate autem multum. 78. Andronicus, the peripatetic, says that piety makes men faithful to and observant of the things of God. Along the same line is the judgment of Plato who, in rejecting the opinion of his teacher Socrates, says a man ought to care more for truth than anything else. Somewhere else too he affirms that while Socrates is certainly his friend, truth is still more so. In yet another place he says that we should have some care for the views of Socrates but more for truth. Deinde cum dicit: ferentes autem hanc opinionem etc., improbat positionem Platonis dicentem quod felicitas hominis consistit in quadam communi idea boni. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo ostendit, quod non est una communis idea boni. Secundo ostendit, quod etiam si esset, non consisteret in ea humana felicitas, ibi: sed forte haec quidem relinquendum est nunc et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ostendit, quod non sit una communis idea boni. Secundo inquirit de modo loquendi, quo Platonici hanc ideam nominabant, ibi, quaeret autem utique aliquis et cetera. Circa primum considerandum est, quod Aristoteles non intendit improbare opinionem Platonis quantum ad hoc quod ponebat unum bonum separatum, a quo dependerent omnia bona, nam et ipse Aristotiles in XII metaphysicae ponit quoddam bonum separatum a toto universo, ad quod totum universum ordinatur, sicut exercitus ad bonum ducis. Improbat autem opinionem Platonis quantum ad hoc quod ponebat illud bonum separatum esse quamdam ideam communem omnium bonorum. Ad quod quidem improbandum utitur triplici ratione. 79. Then , at “Those who hold his opinion,” he rejects the position of Plato who maintains that the happiness of man consists in a common idea or form of good. In regard to this he does two things. First [2, a] he shows there is no one common idea or form of good. Second [Lect. 8; 2, b], at “But perhaps we should etc.” (B. 1096 b 29), he shows that even if there were, human happiness would not consist in it. In regard to the first he does two things. First [2, a, i] he shows that there cannot be one common idea of good. Second [Lect. 7; 2, a, ii], at “Someone will rightly etc.” (B. 1096 a 34), he examines the manner of speaking used by the Platonists when they talk about this idea. In regard to the first we must consider that Aristotle does not intend to reject the opinion insofar as Plato maintained a separated good on which all good would depend. In the twelfth book of the Metaphysics (Ch. 10, 1075 a 11 sq.; St. Th. Lect. 12, 2627-2663), Aristotle expressly mentions a good, separated from the universe, to which the whole universe is ordered as an army is ordered to the good of the general. He does reject the opinion insofar as Plato held that the separated good is an idea common to all goods. He uses three reasons to disprove the opinion. Quarum prima sumitur ex ipsa positione Platonicorum, qui non faciebant aliquam ideam in illis generibus in quibus invenitur prius et posterius, sicut patet in numeris. Nam binarius naturaliter prior est ternario et sic inde, et ideo non dicebant Platonici, quod numerus communis esset quaedam idea separata; ponebant autem singulos numeros ideales separatos, puta binarium, ternarium et similia. Et huius ratio est, quia ea in quibus invenitur prius et posterius, non videntur esse unius ordinis, et per consequens nec aequaliter unam ideam participare. Sed in bonis invenitur prius et posterius. Quod manifestat ex hoc, quod bonum invenitur in eo quodquidest, id est in substantia, et similiter in qualitate et etiam in aliis generibus; manifestum est autem, quod illud quod est ens per seipsum, scilicet substantia, est naturaliter prior omnibus his quae non habent esse nisi in comparatione ad substantiam, sicut est quantitas, quae est mensura substantiae, et qualitas, quae est dispositio substantiae, et ad aliquid, quod est habitudo substantiae. Et idem est in aliis generibus, quae omnia assimilantur propagini entis, idest substantiae, quae est principaliter ens, a qua propaginantur et derivantur omnia alia genera. Quae etiam in tantum dicuntur entia, inquantum accidunt substantiae. Et ex hoc concludit, quod non potest esse quaedam communis idea boni. 80. The first [i, x] of these is taken from the argument of the Platonists themselves who did not postulate an idea for these classes of things in which priority and posteriority are found, as is the case with numbers, for two is naturally prior to three. So the Platonists did not hold that number in general would have a separated idea. They did, though, place separated ideas for individual numbers, for example, two, three and so on. The reason for this is that the things in which priority and posteriority are found do not seem to be of one order and consequently do not partake of one idea. But among good things there is priority and posteriority. This is clear from the fact that good is found in the quod quid est or substance, and likewise in quality and also in other genera. Now it is evident that what is being in itself, such as substance, is naturally prior to all those things that have being only in relation to substance—as quantity, which is the measure of substance; quality, which is the disposition of substance; and relation, which is the reference of substance. The same is true in other categories that are all, as it were, the offspring of being or substance. This is being in the full sense, and from it are engendered and derived all other genera, which are called being to the extent that they are accidents of a substance. From this he concludes that there cannot be a common idea of good. Secundam rationem ponit ibi amplius quia bonum et cetera. Ad cuius evidentiam sciendum est, quod Plato ponebat ideam esse rationem et essentiam omnium eorum, quae ideam participant. Ex quo sequitur, quod eorum quorum non est una ratio communis, non possit esse una idea. Sed diversorum praedicamentorum non est una ratio communis. Nihil enim univoce de his praedicatur. Bonum autem sicut et ens, cum quo convertitur, invenitur in quolibet praedicamento; sicut in quod quid est, id est in substantia, bonum dicitur Deus, in quo non cadit malitia, et intellectus, qui semper est rectus. In qualitate autem virtus, quae bonum facit habentem. In quantitate autem commensuratum, quod est bonum in quolibet quod subditur mensurae. In ad aliquid autem bonum est utile, quod est relatum in debitum finem. In quando autem tempus, scilicet opportunum, et in ubi locus congruus ad ambulandum, sicut dieta. Et idem patet in aliis generibus. Manifestum est ergo, quod non est aliquod unum bonum commune, quod scilicet sit idea, vel ratio communis omnium bonorum: alioquin oporteret, quod bonum non inveniretur in omnibus praedicamentis, sed in uno solo. 81. He lays down the second reason [i, y] at “Furthermore, good etc.” To understand this we must know that Plato held the “idea” to be the “ratio” or nature and essence of all things that partake of the idea. It follows from this that there cannot be one idea of things not having a common nature. But the various categories do not have one common nature, for nothing is predicated of them univocally. Now good, like being with which it is convertible, is found in every category. Thus the quod quid est or substance, God, in whom there is no evil, is called good; the intellect, which is always true, is called good. In quality good is predicated of virtue, which makes its possessor good; in quantity, of the mean, which is the good in everything subject to measure. In relation, good is predicated of the useful which is good relative to a proper end. In time, it is predicated of the opportune; and in place, of a location suitable for walking as a summerhouse. The same may be said of other categories. It is clear, therefore, that there is not some one good that is the idea or the common “ratio” of all goods. Otherwise good would not be found in every category but in one alone. Tertiam rationem ponit ibi amplius autem quia eorum quae sunt et cetera. Ad cuius evidentiam sciendum est, quod sicut Plato ponebat quod res extra animam existentes assequuntur formam generis vel speciei per hoc quod participant ideam, ita anima formatur per scientiam ex hoc quod participat ideam, ita quod anima non cognoscit lapidem nisi per hoc quod participat ideam lapidis, ex quo sequitur quod omnium eorum, quae habent unam ideam, est una scientia. Si ergo omnium bonorum esset una idea, sequeretur quod omnia bona pertinerent ad considerationem unius scientiae. Hoc autem videmus esse falsum, etiam quantum ad bona quae sunt in uno praedicamento (quod (dicit) addit, ne aliquis diversificationes scientiarum attribueret diversitati praedicamentorum): tempus enim quod est ex congruitate considerat quidem in rebus bellicis militaris, in aegritudinibus autem medicinalis, in laboribus autem exercitativa. Relinquitur ergo quod non est una communis idea bonorum. 82. He gives the third reason at “Moreover, because etc.” [i, z]. To understand this we must know the following. Things existing outside the mind, according to Plato, acquire the form of genus or species by participating in the “idea” so that the mind does not know a stone except by participating in the “idea” of stone. The mind in this way partakes of science and knowledge of those things when the “forms” or “ideas” of them are impressed in it. It follows that there is a single science of all the things that partake of one “idea.” If, therefore, there be one “idea” of all goods, it will belong to the study of one science. But we see that this is false even in regard to the goods belonging to a single category. He adds this for fear that someone may specify sciences according to the diversity of categories. We see, however, that strategy studies the opportune in war, medicine studies it in disease, and gymnastics in exercise. It remains then that there is not one common “idea” of all goods.
The Separated Good and an Absolute Good
Chapter 6 (2,a) ii. Whether it is properly called by this name. x. IS NOT PROPERLY NAMED ABSOLUTE GOOD. aa Not properly called absolute good. — 83-84 ἀπορήσειε δ' ἄν τις τί ποτε καὶ βούλονται λέγειν αὐτοέκαστον, εἴπερ ἔν τε αὐτοανθρώπῳ καὶ ἐν ἀνθρώπῳ εἷς καὶ ὁ αὐτὸς λόγος ἐστὶν ὁ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου. ᾗ γὰρ ἄνθρωπος, οὐδὲν διοίσουσιν· εἰ δ' οὕτως, οὐδ' ᾗ ἀγαθόν. Someone will rightly ask what they mean in calling anything “absolute” if in both absolute man and this particular man there exists one and the same nature, that of man. This is the truth for they differ in no way as man. On the same supposition an absolute good or a good in itself and a particular good do not differ as good. bb. He rules out a... rejoinder. — 85-86 ἀλλὰ μὴν οὐδὲ τῷ ἀίδιον εἶναι μᾶλλον ἀγαθὸν ἔσται, εἴπερ μηδὲ λευκότερον τὸ πολυχρόνιον τοῦ ἐφημέρου. It may not be countered that the good in itself is better because eternal, since what endures a long time is not necessarily better by nature than a thing that lasts a day. cc. The Pythagorean view. — 87-88 πιθανώτερον δ' ἐοίκασιν οἱ Πυθαγόρειοι λέγειν περὶ αὐτοῦ, τιθέντες ἐν τῇ τῶν ἀγαθῶν συστοιχίᾳ τὸ ἕν· οἷς δὴ καὶ Σπεύσιππος ἐπακολουθῆσαι δοκεῖ. ἀλλὰ περὶ μὲν τούτων ἄλλος ἔστω λόγος· A more likely explanation seems to have been given by the Pythagoreans who place unity in their list of goods. In this apparently Speusippus followed them. But further discussion of the point will have to wait. y. THIS IS INCONSISTENT WITH... THE COMMON IDEA... OF ALL GOODS. aa. An absolute good cannot be an idea common to all goods. — 89-90 τοῖς δὲ λεχθεῖσιν ἀμφισβήτησίς τις ὑποφαίνεται διὰ τὸ μὴ περὶ παντὸς ἀγαθοῦ τοὺς λόγους εἰρῆσθαι, λέγεσθαι δὲ καθ' ἓν εἶδος τὰ καθ' αὑτὰ διωκόμενα καὶ ἀγαπώμενα, τὰ δὲ ποιητικὰ τούτων ἢ φυλακτικά πως ἢ τῶν ἐναντίων κωλυτικὰ διὰ ταῦτα λέγεσθαι καὶ τρόπον ἄλλον. δῆλον οὖν ὅτι διττῶς λέγοιτ' ἂν τἀγαθά, καὶ τὰ μὲν καθ' αὑτά, θάτερα δὲ διὰ ταῦτα. Contrary to what they have asserted, some doubt arises because their words are not said of every good and yet they do so apply. Now things are said to be good according to one species of good which are sought and desired for their own sake, and things productive or in some way preservative of these or prohibitive of their contraries are said to be good according to an other species. It is obvious then that good is predicated in two ways, for some things are sought for their own sake and some for the sake of others. bb. No common idea of... things... good in themselves. a’. He declares his intention. — 91 χωρίσαντες οὖν ἀπὸ τῶν ὠφελίμων τὰ καθ' αὑτὰ σκεψώμεθα εἰ λέγεται κατὰ μίαν ἰδέαν. Let us separate from the useful good things good in themselves and examine whether they can be called good according to one idea. b’. He investigates... by proposing a question. — 92 καθ' αὑτὰ δὲ ποῖα θείη τις ἄν; ἢ ὅσα καὶ μονούμενα διώκεται, οἷον τὸ φρονεῖν καὶ ὁρᾶν καὶ ἡδοναί τινες καὶ τιμαί; ταῦτα γὰρ εἰ καὶ δι' ἄλλο τι διώκομεν, ὅμως τῶν καθ' αὑτὰ ἀγαθῶν θείη τις ἄν. ἢ οὐδ' ἄλλο οὐδὲν πλὴν τῆς ἰδέας; ὥστε But what would you have enumerated among goods in themselves? Would you include even all the goods sought for themselves alone, as intelligence, sight, and some types of pleasure and honor? These are sometimes sought for the sake of another, but they always have an intrinsic value. Otherwise nothing else seems an absolute good except the “idea” or “form.” c’. He resolves the second part. — 93 μάταιον ἔσται τὸ εἶδος. Wherefore the idea will be empty. d’. He resolves the first Part. — 94 εἰ δὲ καὶ ταῦτ' ἐστὶ τῶν καθ' αὑτά, τὸν τἀγαθοῦ λόγον ἐν ἅπασιν αὐτοῖς τὸν αὐτὸν ἐμφαίνεσθαι δεήσει, καθάπερ ἐν χιόνι καὶ ψιμυθίῳ τὸν τῆς λευκότητος. τιμῆς δὲ καὶ φρονήσεως καὶ ἡδονῆς ἕτεροι καὶ διαφέροντες οἱ λόγοι ταύτῃ ᾗ ἀγαθά. οὐκ ἔστιν ἄρα τὸ ἀγαθὸν κοινόν τι κατὰ μίαν ἰδέαν. If things in themselves are demonstrated as absolute good, then the same nature of goodness will have to appear in all of them as the nature of whiteness in snow and in white lead. But just as we find different natures in honor, prudence, and pleasure, so too we find differences in goodness. The absolute good is not, therefore, something common according to one idea. cc. He handles a pertinent query. — 95-96 ἀλλὰ πῶς δὴ λέγεται; οὐ γὰρ ἔοικε τοῖς γε ἀπὸ τύχης ὁμωνύμοις. ἀλλ' ἆρά γε τῷ ἀφ' ἑνὸς εἶναι ἢ πρὸς ἓν ἅπαντα συντελεῖν, ἢ μᾶλλον κατ' ἀναλογίαν; ὡς γὰρ ἐν σώματι ὄψις, ἐν ψυχῇ νοῦς, καὶ ἄλλο δὴ ἐν ἄλλῳ. In what way then are they to be called good? Not as things purely equivocal. Are they at least to be compared as things referring to one principle or as all tending to one end? Or still better, should we say according to analogy? Indeed, as sight is the good of the body so intellect is the good of the soul and so of other things.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Quaeret autem utique aliquis et cetera. Ostendit supra philosophus quod non est una idea communis omnium bonorum; sed quia Platonici illud bonum separatum non solum vocabant ideam boni, sed etiam per se bonum, hic intendit inquirere Aristotiles utrum hoc convenienter dicatur. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo ostendit, quod illud bonum separatum, non convenienter nominatur per se bonum. Secundo ostendit, quod ponere bonum separatum esse per se bonum repugnat ei quod dicitur ipsum esse communem ideam omnium bonorum, ibi, his autem, quae dicta sunt, et cetera. Circa primum tria facit. Primo ostendit, quod illud bonum separatum non convenienter dicitur per se bonum. Secundo excludit quandam responsionem, ibi: sed quidem neque perpetuum esse etc.; tertio comparat hoc dictum opinioni Pictagoricorum, ibi, probabilius autem videntur et cetera. 83. The Philosopher has shown above that there is no common idea of all goods. But because the separated good is called by the Platonists not only the “idea” or “form” of good but also absolute good, Aristotle here intends to inquire whether it is properly called by this name [(2, a) ii]. In regard to to this he does two things. First [ii, x] he shows that the separated good is not properly named absolute good. Second [ii, y], at “Contrary to what etc.,” he shows that to postulate a separated good as absolute is inconsistent with saying that it is the common idea or form of all goods. In regard to the first he does three things. First [x, aa] he shows that the separated good is not properly called absolute (per se) good. Second [x, bb], at “It may not be countered etc.,” he rules out a particular rejoinder. Third [x, cc], at “A more likely explanation etc.,” he compares this doctrine with the Pythagorean view. Circa primum considerandum est, quod illud bonum separatum, quod est causa omnium bonorum, oportet ponere in altiori gradu bonitatis, quam ea quae apud nos sunt, eo quod est ultimus finis omnium. Per hoc autem dictum videtur, quod non sit altioris gradus in bonitate, quam alia bona. Et hoc manifestat per hoc, quod unumquodque separatorum vocabat Plato per se, sicut ideam hominis vocabat per se hominem et ideam equi per se equum, manifestum est autem, quod una et eadem ratio est hominis qui est apud nos et per se hominis, idest separati. Et hoc manifestat per hoc, quod homo separatus et homo qui est in materia non differunt secundum quod homo, differunt autem secundum quaedam alia, puta quod ille homo est immaterialis et iste est materialis; sicut animal commune et homo non differunt in ratione animalis, sed differunt in hoc, quod homo addit rationale super animal. Ita etiam videtur quod in ratione hominis non differat homo separatus ab hoc homine, sed hic homo addit materiam. Eadem igitur ratione illud separatum bonum quod nominant per se bonum, non erit alterius rationis in bonitate, quam hoc particulare bonum, poterit autem esse differentia quantum ad aliqua alia, quae sunt praeter rationem boni. 84. In regard to the first we must consider that the separated good, which is the cause of all goods, ought to be placed in a higher degree of goodness than the good things about us because the separated good is the ultimate end of all. But it seems that, according to this doctrine, it is not a higher degree in goodness than other goods. This is apparent because the Platonists called each of the separated things absolute or in itself, as man in himself and even horse in itself. Now it is clear that one and the same nature belongs to man who lives among us and to man in himself, that is, ideal man. He proves this by the fact that ideal man and man clothed with matter do not differ as man, but they do differ in certain other respects—for example, this particular man has matter. Thus the notions of animal and man do not differ in animality but rather in man’s rational principle that he has over and above animality. So too it seems that the ideal man does not differ from this particular man in the nature of man but because this particular man has matter in addition to being man. For the same reason the good that is called absolute will not have goodness different in nature from this particular good, although there can be a difference in other respects than the nature of good. Deinde cum dicit: (sed quidem) neque perpetuum esse etc., excludit quamdam responsionem. Posset enim aliquis respondere, quod illud per se bonum est melius, quia est perpetuum. Haec autem bona sunt corruptibilia. Quod autem est diuturnius, videtur esse melius et magis eligendum. Sed ad hoc excludendum dicit, quod neque hoc quod est perpetuum esse, facit illud per se bonum esse magis bonum. Perpetuum enim a non perpetuo differt duratione. Differentia autem durationis alicuius rei est praeter rationem propriae speciei, sicut vita quae est unius diei et vita quae est diuturna non differunt in ratione vitae, sed solum differunt in duratione. Sic ergo si accipiatur bonum quasi una species, duratio erit praeter rationem boni. Et ita ex hoc quod est aliquid diuturnius non differet secundum rationem boni quasi melius existens quam si esset unius diei tantum. 85. Then [x, bb], at “It may not,” he rules out a particular answer. Someone could say that the good in itself is better because eternal while the goods here are perishable. Indeed, a thing that lasts longer does seem better and more desirable. To exclude this he points out that the good in itself is eternal does not mean that it is better. The eternal differs from the non-eternal by reason of duration, and the difference of duration of a thing is outside the nature of the species, as life that lasts only a day and life more enduring are not different by reason of life but only by duration. So then if good be understood as one species, its duration will be outside the nature of good. The longer duration of a thing then does not make that thing any better. Sed si ponamus non esse unam speciem vel ideam boni, ut Platonici posuerunt, sed quod bonum dicitur sicut et ens in omnibus generibus, hoc ipsum quod est diuturnius erit bonum in tempore, unde addet ad bonitatem. Et sic quod est diuturnius erit melius. Sed hoc non potest dici si bonum sit una species per se, et ita sequetur quod neque sit melius ex hoc, quod est perpetuum. 86. If we do not hold that there is one species or idea of good as the Platonists did, but that good, like being, is predicated in every genus, duration itself will be a good of time. It would, in that case, add something to goodness. Hence what is more lasting will be better. But this cannot be said if the good is one species in itself. It follows then that it is not better because eternal. Deinde cum dicit: probabilius autem videntur etc., comparat praedictam positionem Platonicorum positioni Pythagoricorum. Circa quod considerandum est, quod secundum Platonicos eadem erat ratio boni et unius. Et ideo ponebant idem esse per se unum et per se bonum, ex quo necesse erat quod ponerent unum primum per se bonum. Quod quidem Pythagorici non faciebant. Sed unum ponebant aliquid eorum quae continentur in coordinatione boni sub quo ponebant
lumen, e contrario autem sub malo ponebant tenebras, unum, multitudinem, quietem, motum, musculum, feminam, dextrum, sinistrum, finitum, infinitum, imparem, parem numerum, rectum, curvum quadratum; altera parte longius. 87. Then [x, cc], at “A more likely explanation,” he compares this opinion with that of the Pythagoreans. We must consider that according to the Platonists the nature of the one and the good is the same, and so they identified one in itself and good in itself. Hence they were obliged to postulate one first good. The Pythagoreans did not do this’ however, but they put one among the things contained in the list of the good under which they placed:
Light (The contrary evil of which they declared to be:) Darkness Unity Multitude Rest Motion Straight Curved Masculine Feminine Right Left Finite Infinite Equal Unequal Square Rectangular Dicit ergo, quod quantum ad hoc probabilius dixerunt Pythagorici quam Platonici, quia non cogebantur ponere unam rationem boni. Et ideo Speusippus, qui fuit nepos Platonis, filius sororis eius, et successor eius in scholis, in hoc non fuit secutus Platonem, sed magis Pythagoram. Dicit autem, quod de his debet fieri alius sermo, scilicet in metaphysica. 88. He says, therefore, that on this point the Pythagoreans gave a more likely explanation than the Platonists because the Pythagoreans were not compelled to hold one nature for the good. Even Speusippus, who was a son of Plato’s sister and his successor in the Academy, did not follow Plato but Pythagoras on this point. He adds that further discussion of the subject will be taken up in the Metaphysics. (Cf. Bk. I, Ch. 5, 986 a 13-986 b 9; St. Th. Lect. 8, 124-133, Cf. Bk. XI, Ch. 9, 1066 a 13-17; St. Th. Lect. 9, 2303.) Deinde cum dicit: his autem quae dicta sunt etc., ostendit, quod dicere illud bonum separatum esse per se bonum, repugnat ei quod est unam esse ideam omnium bonorum. Et circa hoc tria facit. Primo ostendit, quod per se bonum non potest esse communis idea omnium bonorum. Secundo, quod non potest esse communis idea etiam omnium quae dicuntur per se bona, ibi, dividentes igitur, et cetera. Tertio respondet cuidam quaestioni, ibi sed qualiter utique et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod contra ea quae dicta sunt a Platonicis, occulte apparet quaedam dubitatio propter hoc quod, cum loquitur de illo per se bono, non videntur de omni bono sermones dici, etiam quantum ad ipsam apparentiam verborum, et fieri quantum ad convenientiam rerum. Et hoc ideo quia diversae sunt species vel rationes bonorum. 89. Then [ii, y], at “Contrary to what,” he shows that the assertion that the separated good is an absolute good or a good in itself is inconsistent with their view that there is one idea or form of all goods. He does three things on this point. Firstly, [y, aa] he shows that an absolute good cannot be an idea common to all goods. Second [y, bb], at “Let us separate etc.,” he shows that there cannot be a common idea of all things called good in themselves. Third [y, cc], at “In what way etc.,” he handles a pertinent query. He says then in the first place that contrary to what the Platonists assert, there seems to be a subtle hesitation here. When they speak about the good in itself, it does not seem from the obvious meaning of their words that the discussion concerns every good, but as much can be gathered from the context because there are various species or forms of goods. Dicuntur enim secundum unam speciem vel rationem bona illa quae secundum se ipsa sunt persecuta, id est quaesita vel desiderata, et dilecta, id est amata. Et secundum aliam rationem dicuntur bona illa quae sunt aliqualiter factiva vel conservativa illorum quae sunt secundum se bona. Tertio vero modo dicuntur aliqua bona quia sunt prohibitiva contrariorum. Sic igitur manifestum est, quod bonum dupliciter dicitur. Quaedam enim sunt bona secundum seipsa, scilicet prima; de quibus dictum est, quod propter se quaeruntur. Utraque vero alia, scilicet factiva, vel conservativa, et etiam prohibitiva contrariorum dicuntur bona propter illa quae sunt secundum se bona. Et sic manifestum est, quod ratio per se boni non potest aptari omnibus bonis. 90. Those things sought, pursued, chosen, or desired for themselves are good according to one species or form of goodness. Those desired insofar as they are good in some way for the sake of others, which in their turn are really good, are called good for another reason. In a third way, some things are called good because they prevent the contrary evil. It is clear, therefore, that good is predicated in two ways. Primary goods are good in themselves. As we have already remarked (9-13, 58) they are sought for themselves. Both of the other things called good the productive or preservative of good and the restrictive of contrary evil are called good in reference to things good in themselves. It is obvious then that the “ratio’, of absolute good is not suited to all goods. Deinde cum dicit: dividentes igitur etc., ostendit quod una ratio per se boni non potest competere omnibus per se bonis. Et primo dicit de quo est intentio. Circa quod considerandum est, quod factiva vel conservativa secundum se bonorum et prohibitiva contrariorum dicuntur bona sicut utilia. Quia ergo manifestum est quod talibus non aptatur ratio per se boni, separemus ab eis illa quae sunt secundum se bona, et videamus si possint dici bona secundum unam ideam, quam dicunt per se bonum. 91. Then [y, bb], at “Let us separate,” he shows that the “ratio” of absolute good cannot belong to all goods in themselves. First [bb, a’] he declares his intention. We must consider that those things that are productive or preservative of goods in themselves, or restrictive of contraries, are called good because they are useful, and the nature of absolute good does not belong to the merely useful. Let us then separate from these useful things the things that are in themselves good and see whether they can be designated good according to one form, which is called absolute good. Secundo ibi: secundum se ipsa autem etc., ad hoc investigandum proponit quamdam quaestionem: qualia scilicet sint ponenda secundum se bona. Et hanc quaestionem determinat per duo membra. Quorum primum est: utrum dicenda sint secundum se bona quaecumque quaeruntur solitaria, id est etiam si sola essent, ut scilicet nulla alia utilitas ex eis sequeretur, sicut scire, videre, voluptates quaedam et honores. Huiusmodi enim quamvis quandoque quaerantur propter aliquid aliud ad quod sunt utilia, tamen si ad nihil aliud valerent, secundum se essent bona et desiderabilia. Secundum autem membrum quaestionis est: utrum nihil aliud sit per se bonum nisi sola idea. 92. Second [bb, b’], at “But what would you,” he investigates this last point by proposing a question: what kinds of things should be considered goods in themselves? He presents this question in two parts. In the first he asks whether we are to call absolute whatever goods are sought for themselves alone to the exclusion of all others, so that they are not ordered to any further use. Such would be, for example, sight, and certain kinds of pleasure and honors. These things are sometimes sought for the sake of something else to which they are useful, but even if they have no use beyond themselves they are good and desirable in themselves. The second part of the question asks whether there is any other absolute good besides the idea or form itself. Tertio ibi: quare erit etc., deducit hoc secundum membrum immediate praemissum. Et concludit, quod si nihil aliud sit per se bonum nisi idea, erit idea inanis, id est sine efficacia. Ponitur enim idea quasi exemplar quoddam cuius similitudo sit aliis impressa. Exemplar autem est supervacuum, si nihil ei assimulatur; unde sequitur quod idea sit inanis, si nihil aliud sit secundum se bonum. 93, Third [bb, c’] at “Wherefore the idea,” he resolves the second part just mentioned. He concludes that if nothing else be a good in itself except the idea, then the idea will be a kind of exemplar whose likeness will be impressed on others. An exemplar is useless if it has no likeness to some thing else. Hence it follows that the idea is useless if there is no other good in itself. Quarto ibi: si sunt et haec etc., deducit primum membrum. Et dicit quod, si omnia praedicta sint secundum se bona participando ideam, quae est per se bonum, oportebit, quod in omnibus appareat eadem ratio bonitatis, sicut in nive et cerusa est eadem ratio albedinis, eo quod participant unam formam. Sed hoc non apparet esse verum in praedictis. Honor enim et prudentia et voluptas habent diversas rationes non solum proprias, prout scilicet ratio honoris, inquantum est honor, differt a ratione prudentiae inquantum est prudentia, sed etiam in quantum sunt bona; non enim est una ratio bonitatis in omnibus his, nec secundum eamdem rationem sunt appetibilia. Unde relinquitur, quod id quod dicunt per se bonum, non est aliquid commune, velut una idea communis omnium bonorum. 94. Fourth [bb, d’], at “Things in themselves,” he resolves the first part in this way. If all the aforementioned things are good in themselves by partaking of the idea which is itself good, the same nature of goodness must appear in all of them, as we find the same nature of whiteness in snow and in white’ lead from the fact that they share in the one form. But this apparently is not true of the things mentioned above. Honor, prudence, and pleasure differ in their natures, that is, the nature of honor precisely as honor differs from the nature of prudence as prudence. Moreover, the nature of honor as a good differs from the nature of prudence as it is a good. There is not, then, one nature of goodness in all good things nor are they all desirable under the same aspect. Hence it remains that what is called absolute good is not something common as one idea or form common to all goods. Deinde cum dicit: sed qualiter utique etc., respondet cuidam tacitae quaestioni, quae est qualiter praedicta dicantur bona secundum diversas rationes. Et haec quidem quaestio locum habet, quia aliquid dici de multis secundum diversas rationes contingit dupliciter. Uno modo secundum rationes omnino diversas non habentes respectum ad aliquid unum; et ista dicuntur aequivoca casu, quia scilicet casu accidit quod unum nomen unus homo imposuit uni rei, et alius alii rei, ut praecipue patet in diversis hominibus eodem nomine nominatis. Alio modo unum nomen dicitur de multis secundum rationes diversas non totaliter, sed in aliquo uno convenientes. Quandoque quidem in hoc, quod referuntur ad unum principium, sicut res aliqua dicitur militaris, vel quia est instrumentum militis, sicut gladius, vel quia est tegumentum eius sicut lorica, vel quia est vehiculum eius, sicut equus. Quandoque vero in hoc, quod referuntur ad unum finem sicut medicina dicitur sana, eo quod est factiva sanitatis, dieta vero eo quod est conservativa sanitatis, urina vero eo quod est sanitatis significativa. Quandoque vero secundum proportiones diversas ad idem subiectum, sicut qualitas dicitur ens quia est dispositio per se entis, idest substantiae, quantitas vero eo quod est mensura eiusdem, et sic de aliis, vel secundum unam proportionem ad diversa subiecta. Eamdem enim habent proportionem visus ad corpus et intellectus ad animam; unde sicut visus est potentia organi corporalis, ita etiam intellectus est potentia animae absque participatione corporis. 95. Then [y, cc], at “In what way,” he handles a pertinent query. This inquiry belongs here since predication according to different reasons is made in the first of two ways according to meanings that are without any relation to any one thing. These are purely equivocal because it happens by chance that the same word has been used by one person for one thing, and then by someone else for an entirely different thing, as is plainly evident in the case of different men having the same name. In another way, one word is used of several things with meanings not entirely different but having some sort of common likeness. Sometimes they agree in referring to one principle, as a thing is called military because it is a soldier’s weapon (like a sword), or his clothing (like a uniform), or his transportation (like a horse). Sometimes they agree in referring to one end. Thus medicine is called healthy because it produces health, diet is called healthy because it preserves health, and urine in its turn is called healthy because it is a sign of health. Sometimes the agreement is according to a different proportion to the same subject, as quality is called being because it is a disposition of a being in itself, i.e., a substance, and quantity because it is a measure of substance, and so on. Or the agreement is according to one proportion to different subjects. For instance, sight has the same proportion to the body as intellect to the soul. Hence as sight is a power of a physical organ so also is the intellect a power of the soul without the participation of the body. Sic ergo dicit, quod bonum dicitur de multis, non secundum rationes penitus differentes, sicut accidit in his quae sunt casu aequivoca, sed in quantum omnia bona dependent ab uno primo bonitatis principio, vel inquantum ordinantur ad unum finem. Non enim voluit Aristoteles quod illud bonum separatum sit idea et ratio omnium bonorum, sed principium et finis. Vel etiam dicuntur omnia bona magis secundum analogiam, id est proportionem eandem, quantum scilicet quod visus est bonum corporis, et intellectus est bonum animae. Ideo autem hunc tertium modum praefert, quia accipitur secundum bonitatem inhaerentem rebus. Primi autem duo modi secundum bonitatem separatam, a qua non ita proprie aliquid denominatur. 96. In this fashion, therefore, he affirms that “good” is predicated of many things not with meanings entirely different, as happens with things completely equivocal, but according to analogy or the same proportion, inasmuch as all goods depend on the first principle of goodness, that is, as they are ordered to one end. Aristotle indeed did not intend that the separated good be the idea and “ratio” of all goods but their principle and end. Likewise, all things are called good by an analogy or the same proportion just as sight is the good of the body and intellect is the good of the soul. He prefers this third way because it is understood according to goodness inherent in things. The first two ways, however, are ascribed to a separated goodness from which a thing is not so properly denominated.
This Matter Really Belongs to Another Science
Chapter 6 2,b Supposing a common idea of good, it would not follow: that happiness would have to be sought according to it. i. He presents a proof of his position. — 97-98 ἀλλ' ἴσως ταῦτα μὲν ἀφετέον τὸ νῦν· ἐξακριβοῦν γὰρ ὑπὲρ αὐτῶν ἄλλης ἂν εἴη φιλοσοφίας οἰκειότερον. ὁμοίως δὲ καὶ περὶ τῆς ἰδέας· But perhaps we should now leave these subjects, for a precise determination of them properly belongs to another branch of philosophy [Metaphysics]. The same too may be said about the idea. εἰ γὰρ καὶ ἔστιν ἕν τι τὸ κοινῇ κατηγορούμενον ἀγαθὸν ἢ χωριστὸν αὐτό τι καθ' αὑτό, δῆλον ὡς οὐκ ἂν εἴη πρακτὸν οὐδὲ κτητὸν ἀνθρώπῳ· νῦν δὲ τοιοῦτόν τι ζητεῖται. Even if there is some one good univocally predicated or if a separated good in itself does exist, it is obvious that it is not a thing produced or possessed by man. Now it is a good of this kind that we are looking for. ii. He gives an apparent rejoinder. — 99 τάχα δέ τῳ δόξειεν ἂν βέλτιον εἶναι γνωρίζειν αὐτὸ πρὸς τὰ κτητὰ καὶ πρακτὰ τῶν ἀγαθῶν· οἷον γὰρ παράδειγμα τοῦτ' ἔχοντες μᾶλλον εἰσόμεθα καὶ τὰ ἡμῖν ἀγαθά, κἂν εἰδῶμεν, ἐπιτευξόμεθα αὐτῶν. Perhaps some will think it better for the sake of the goods produced or possessed to obtain a knowledge of the separated good. Using this as a guide we will have a more thorough understanding of the objects that are good for us, and thus enlightened, we may acquire them. iii. He refutes it. x. BY TWO REASONS. THE FIRST. — 100 πιθανότητα μὲν οὖν τινα ἔχει ὁ λόγος, ἔοικε δὲ ταῖς ἐπιστήμαις διαφωνεῖν· πᾶσαι γὰρ ἀγαθοῦ τινὸς ἐφιέμεναι καὶ τὸ ἐνδεὲς ἐπιζητοῦσαι παραλείπουσι τὴν γνῶσιν αὐτοῦ. καίτοι βοήθημα τηλικοῦτον τοὺς τεχνίτας ἅπαντας ἀγνοεῖν καὶ μηδ' ἐπιζητεῖν οὐκ εὔλογον. This reasoning certainly has some probability, although it does not seem to square with what we observed in the sciences. While sciences tend to some good and seek the necessary, they all neglect to use a knowledge of the separated good. But it is not reason able to suppose that all artists and scientists would be ignorant of and would fail to seek a thing so advantageous to themselves. y. HE OFFERS A SECOND REASON. — 101-102 ἄπορον δὲ καὶ τί ὠφεληθήσεται ὑφάντης ἢ τέκτων πρὸς τὴν αὑτοῦ τέχνην εἰδὼς τὸ αὐτὸ τοῦτο ἀγαθόν, ἢ πῶς ἰατρικώτερος ἢ στρατηγικώτερος ἔσται ὁ τὴν ἰδέαν αὐτὴν τεθεαμένος. φαίνεται μὲν γὰρ οὐδὲ τὴν ὑγίειαν οὕτως ἐπισκοπεῖν ὁ ἰατρός, ἀλλὰ τὴν ἀνθρώπου, μᾶλλον δ' ἴσως τὴν τοῦδε· καθ' ἕκαστον γὰρ ἰατρεύει. καὶ περὶ μὲν τούτων ἐπὶ τοσοῦτον εἰρήσθω. Indeed the separated good would be useless. What help does a knowledge of it afford a weaver and a carpenter in the practice of their trades? Or how is a man a better doctor or a better soldier by studying the idea itself? A doctor surely is not intent on health so understood but on the health of man in the concrete, or even better perhaps, on the health of this man. It is the individual man whom a doctor intends to cure. Enough has now been said on these topics.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Sed forte haec quidem et cetera. Postquam philosophus ostendit quod non est una communis idea boni, nunc ostendit quod etiam si esset, non pertineret ad propositum, ut scilicet secundum ipsam esset quaerenda felicitas. Et circa hoc tria facit. Primo probat propositum. Secundo ponit quandam responsionem, ibi: forte autem alicui videbitur et cetera. Tertio excludit eam, ibi, probabilitatem quidem igitur, et cetera. Dicit ergo primo quod haec, scilicet qualiter bonum dicatur secundum unam vel diversas rationes de bonis, oportet nunc relinquere, quia per certitudinem determinare de hoc pertinet magis ad aliam philosophiam, scilicet ad metaphysicam. Et similiter etiam consideratio de idea boni, non est propria praesenti intentioni. Et horum rationem assignat: quia si esset unum bonum univoce de omnibus praedicatum, vel etiam si esset per seipsum separatum existens, manifestum est, quod non erit tale aliquid quod sit vel operatum, vel possessum ab homine. Nunc autem tale aliquid quaerimus. 97. After the Philosopher has explained that there is no common idea of good, now [2, b] he shows that even if there were, it would not follow that happiness would have to be sought according to it. In regard to this he does three things. First [i] he presents a proof of his position. Second [ii], at “Perhaps some will think etc.,” he gives an apparent rejoinder. Third (iii], at “This reasoning certainly etc.,” he refutes it. He says first that the manner of predicating good according to one or different reasons must now be put aside because more accurate study of the matter properly belongs to another branch of philosophy, metaphysics. Likewise, the consideration of the idea of good is not pertinent to our purpose. As reason for these statements he maintains that if there were one good univocally predicated of all, or even if a separated good did exist in itself, it would obviously not be a thing produced or possessed by man. Now it is precisely such a thing we are seeking. Quaerimus enim felicitatem, quae est finis humanorum actuum. Finis autem hominis, vel est ipsa eius operatio, vel est aliqua res exterior. Quae quidem potest esse finis hominis vel quia est operata ab ipso, sicut domus est finis aedificationis, vel quia est possessa, sicut ager est finis emptionis. Manifestum est autem quod illud bonum commune vel separatum non potest esse ipsa hominis operatio, nec etiam est aliquid per hominem factum. Nec etiam videtur aliquid ab homine possessum sicut possidentur res quae veniunt in usum huius vitae. Unde manifestum est, quod illud bonum commune vel separatum non est bonum humanum, quod nunc quaerimus. 98. We are looking for the happiness that is the end of human acts. The end, however, of man is either some thing he does or some external thing. This can be the end of man because either it is produced, as a house is the end of building or it is possessed as a thing that is used. Now it is clear that the common or separated good cannot be the operation itself of man, nor is it something produced by man. Moreover, it does not seem to be something possessed by man as he possesses things used in this life. Obviously, then, the common or separated good is not the good of man that is the object of our present search. Deinde cum dicit: forte autem alicui videbitur etc., ponit quamdam responsionem. Posset enim aliquis dicere, quod illud bonum separatum, quamvis non sit operatum vel possessum ab homine, est tamen exemplar omnium operatorum et possessorum bonorum. Expedit autem intueri exemplar ei qui vult pervenire ad exemplata. Et ideo videtur expedire, quod aliquis ipsum bonum separatum cognoscat propter bona possessa et operata. Quia habentes illud bonum separatum sicut quoddam exemplar, magis poterimus cognoscere, et per consequens melius adipisci ea quae sunt nobis bona, sicut inspicientes ad hominem aliquem magis proprie possunt depingere eius effigiem. 99. Then [ii], at “Perhaps,” he gives an apparent rejoinder. Someone might say that the separated good, although not produced or possessed by man, nevertheless is the pattern of all the good produced and possessed. Now one who wishes to understand the copies ought to know the pattern. So it would seem that one should know the separated good itself for the sake of the goods produced and possessed. The reason is that, having the separated good as a guide, we will be better able to know and consequently better able to acquire the things that are good for us, as an artist looking at a model is better able to paint a likeness. too. Deinde cum dicit probabilitatem quidem igitur etc., excludit praemissam responsionem duabus rationibus. Quarum prima sumitur ex eo quod communiter observatur. Et dicit, quod sermo praedictae responsionis videtur esse probabilis, sed tamen videtur dissonare ab eo quod observatur in omnibus scientiis. Omnes enim scientiae et artes appetunt quoddam bonum, ut supra habitum est, et unaquaeque inquirit illud quod est necessarium sibi ad consequendum finem intentum. Nulla autem utitur cognitione illius boni separati. Quod non esset rationabile si ex hoc eis aliquod auxilium praeberetur; non ergo aliquid confert ad operata et possessa bona cognitio illius boni separati. 100. Then [iii], at “This reasoning certainly,” he refutes this response by two reasons. The first [iii, x] he takes from ordinary observation. While the reason given seems probable, he says that it does not appear to be in agreement with what we observe in other sciences. All sciences and arts tend to some good, as we said above (8), and to attain the end aimed at, each uses what is necessary for itself. None of them, though, uses the knowledge of this separated good. This would not be reasonable if some advantage could be derived from it. Therefore, the knowledge of this separated good contributes nothing to the goods produced and possessed. Secundam rationem ponit ibi inutile autem et cetera. Quae sumitur ab ipsa natura rei. Et dicit quod illud bonum separatum est omnino inutile ad scientias et artes, et quantum ad earum exercitium, quia textor vel faber in nullo iuvatur ad operationem suae artis ex cognitione illius boni separati. Et etiam quantum ad acquisitionem scientiae vel artis. Nullus enim efficitur magis medicus vel magis miles per hoc quod contemplatur ideam separatam boni. Cuius rationem assignat: quia oportet exemplar, ad quod necesse est inspicere, esse conforme operato. Ars autem non operatur aliquod bonum commune aut abstractum, sed concretum et in singulari, medicus enim non intendit sanitatem in abstracto, sed in concreto, eam scilicet, quae est hominis, et in singulari, eam scilicet quae est huius hominis, quia medicatur non hominem universalem sed singularem. Unde relinquitur quod cognitio boni universalis et separati non sit necessaria, neque ad acquisitionem scientiarum neque ad exercitium earum. 101. He offers a second reason [iii, y] at “Indeed the separated good would be useless.” This is taken from the very nature of the thing. He states that the good under consideration is altogether useless for the sciences and the arts, both in regard to their exercise, since a weaver or a carpenter is in no way aided in the practice of his art by a knowledge of that separated good, and in regard to the acquisition of a science or an art. No one becomes a better physician or a better soldier because he has studied the separated form of good. The reason he assigns is that an exemplar, at which it is necessary to gaze, must be in conformity with the work produced. Art, however, does not produce some good in common or an abstract good but a good that is concrete and individual. A physician does not intend health in the abstract but in the concrete, the health of this particular man. He does not give medicine to mankind in general but to this individual man. We must conclude then that the knowledge of a universal and separated good is not needed either for the acquisition or for the exercise of the sciences. Ultimo autem concludit epilogando tantum dictum esse de opinionibus felicitatis. 102. On this note he concludes his discussion of the opinions offered about happiness.
The Nature of Happiness
Chapter 7 I. HE SHOWS WHAT HAPPINESS IS. A. He shows what happiness is. A’ He shows what happiness is. 1. HE PROPOSES SOME GENERAL NOTIONS AND CONDITIONS. a. He states that happiness is the ultimate end. — 103-106 πάλιν δ' ἐπανέλθωμεν ἐπὶ τὸ ζητούμενον ἀγαθόν, τί ποτ' ἂν εἴη. φαίνεται μὲν γὰρ ἄλλο ἐν ἄλλῃ πράξει καὶ τέχνῃ· ἄλλο γὰρ ἐν ἰατρικῇ καὶ στρατηγικῇ καὶ ταῖς λοιπαῖς ὁμοίως. τί οὖν ἑκάστης τἀγαθόν; ἢ οὗ χάριν τὰ λοιπὰ πράττεται; τοῦτο δ' ἐν ἰατρικῇ μὲν ὑγίεια, ἐν στρατηγικῇ δὲ νίκη, ἐν οἰκοδομικῇ δ' οἰκία, ἐν ἄλλῳ δ' ἄλλο, ἐν ἁπάσῃ δὲ πράξει καὶ προαιρέσει τὸ τέλος· τούτου γὰρ ἕνεκα τὰ λοιπὰ πράττουσι πάντες. ὥστ' εἴ τι τῶν πρακτῶν ἁπάντων ἐστὶ τέλος, τοῦτ' ἂν εἴη τὸ πρακτὸν ἀγαθόν, εἰ δὲ πλείω, ταῦτα. μεταβαίνων δὴ ὁ λόγος εἰς ταὐτὸν ἀφῖκται· τοῦτο δ' ἔτι μᾶλλον διασαφῆσαι πειρατέον. ἐπεὶ δὲ πλείω φαίνεται τὰ τέλη, τούτων δ' αἱρούμεθά τινα δι' ἕτερον, οἷον πλοῦτον αὐλοὺς καὶ ὅλως τὰ ὄργανα, δῆλον ὡς οὐκ ἔστι πάντα τέλεια· Let us return again to a consideration of the good we are seeking in order to find out what it is. It seems that the good differs in different operations and arts. In medicine it is one good, in war it is another, and in other arts, still other goods. As the thing sought in every activity, the good is the end for the sake of which other things are done. This will be health in medicine, victory in war, a building in architecture, something else in some other art. In every activity and choice there is an end, the agent doing everything he does for the sake of that end. Therefore, if there is an end for all that we do, this will be the good intended. If there are many ends, there will be many goods, and in this case our discussion will go beyond the many until it arrives at that supreme good. b. He lays down the conditions belonging to the ultimate end. i. The first is that it be a perfect thing. — 107-111 τὸ δ' ἄριστον τέλειόν τι φαίνεται. ὥστ' εἰ μέν ἐστιν ἕν τι μόνον τέλειον, τοῦτ' ἂν εἴη τὸ ζητούμενον, εἰ δὲ πλείω, τὸ τελειότατον τούτων. τελειότερον δὲ λέγομεν τὸ καθ' αὑτὸ διωκτὸν τοῦ δι' ἕτερον καὶ τὸ μηδέποτε δι' ἄλλο αἱρετὸν τῶν καὶ καθ' αὑτὰ καὶ δι' αὐτὸ αἱρετῶν, καὶ ἁπλῶς δὴ τέλειον τὸ καθ' αὑτὸ αἱρετὸν ἀεὶ καὶ μηδέποτε δι' ἄλλο. τοιοῦτον δ' ἡ εὐδαιμονία μάλιστ' εἶναι δοκεῖ· ταύτην γὰρ αἱρούμεθα ἀεὶ δι' αὐτὴν καὶ οὐδέποτε δι' ἄλλο, τιμὴν δὲ καὶ ἡδονὴν καὶ νοῦν καὶ πᾶσαν ἀρετὴν αἱρούμεθα μὲν καὶ δι' αὐτά μηθενὸς γὰρ ἀποβαίνοντος ἑλοίμεθ' ἂν ἕκαστον αὐτῶν, αἱρούμεθα δὲ καὶ τῆς εὐδαιμονίας χάριν, διὰ τούτων ὑπολαμβάνοντες εὐδαιμονήσειν. τὴν δ' εὐδαιμονίαν οὐδεὶς αἱρεῖται τούτων χάριν, οὐδ' ὅλως δι' ἄλλο. We must make a considerable effort to give this a fuller explanation. Apparently there are many ends, some of which we choose for the sake of something else like riches, flutes, and in general all instruments. It is obvious then that not all ends are perfect. But the ultimate end appears to be perfect. Wherefore, if there be only one of this kind, it will be what we are looking for. If there are a number of goods, then it is the most perfect of these. Now we call that object which is desired for its own sake more perfect than one that is desired for some further purpose. That which is never desired for any further utility is more perfect than the things desirable in themselves and for the sake of this further purpose. In the event that the object is perfect without qualification it will always be desirable for itself and never for anything beyond itself. Happiness in fact seems especially to be of this nature, for we choose it in every case for itself and never for something else. Honor and pleasure and knowledge and every virtue we do indeed choose for themselves, for we would choose every one of them even if no advantage accrued to us. But we choose them also on account of happiness because we hope to become happy. On the other hand, no one chooses happiness for the sake of these goods or for any other good whatsoever. ii. The second, that it be self-sufficient. x. FIRST IN REGARD To... THE NATURE OF SUFFICIENCY. — 112-114 φαίνεται δὲ καὶ ἐκ τῆς αὐταρκείας τὸ αὐτὸ συμβαίνειν· τὸ γὰρ τέλειον ἀγαθὸν αὔταρκες εἶναι δοκεῖ. τὸ δ' αὔταρκες λέγομεν οὐκ αὐτῷ μόνῳ, τῷ ζῶντι βίον μονώτην, ἀλλὰ καὶ γονεῦσι καὶ τέκνοις καὶ γυναικὶ καὶ ὅλως τοῖς φίλοις καὶ πολίταις, ἐπειδὴ φύσει πολιτικὸν ὁ ἄνθρωπος. τούτων δὲ ληπτέος ὅρος τις· ἐπεκτείνοντι γὰρ ἐπὶ τοὺς γονεῖς καὶ τοὺς ἀπογόνους καὶ τῶν φίλων τοὺς φίλους εἰς ἄπειρον πρόεισιν. ἀλλὰ τοῦτο μὲν εἰσαῦθις ἐπισκεπτέον· τὸ δ' αὔταρκες τίθεμεν ὃ μονούμενον αἱρετὸν ποιεῖ τὸν βίον καὶ μηδενὸς ἐνδεᾶ· τοιοῦτον δὲ τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν οἰόμεθα εἶναι· The same seems to follow from the viewpoint of self-sufficiency, for the perfect good apparently is self-sufficient. We call it self-sufficient not only as adequate for a man living a solitary life by himself but also for his parents, children, wife, friends in general, and fellow citizens because this good naturally will include man’s social life. But some limitation must be placed on the number provided for, since the extension to relatives, neighbors and friends might go on without limit. We must return to examine this question later. Now we call that self-sufficient which, taken alone, makes life desirable and lacking nothing. In our opinion happiness is of this nature. y. AS REGARDS THE PREFIX “SELF.” — 115-117 ἔτι δὲ πάντων αἱρετωτάτην μὴ συναριθμουμένηνσυναριθμουμένην δὲ δῆλον ὡς αἱρετωτέραν μετὰ τοῦ ἐλαχίστου τῶν ἀγαθῶν· ὑπεροχὴ γὰρ ἀγαθῶν γίνεται τὸ προστιθέμενον, ἀγαθῶν δὲ τὸ μεῖζον αἱρετώτερον ἀεί. τέλειον δή τι φαίνεται καὶ αὔταρκες ἡ εὐδαιμονία, τῶν πρακτῶν οὖσα τέλος. Moreover, happiness without further addition will be the most desirable of all things. With any addition it will certainly be more desirable even though the addition be ever so slight. The reason is that the addition has increased the good, and a greater good is always more desirable. Therefore, happiness as the end of all human actions is the perfect self-sufficient good.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Rursus autem redeamus et cetera. Postquam philosophus pertractavit opiniones aliorum de felicitate, hic determinat de ea secundum propriam opinionem. Et dividitur in partes duas. In prima ostendit quid sit felicitas. In secunda determinat de quadam proprietate felicitatis, ibi, determinatis autem his, scrutemur de felicitate et cetera. Prima autem pars dividitur in partes duas: in prima ostendit quid sit felicitas. In secunda removet quamdam dubitationem, ibi, multae autem transmutationes fiunt et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ostendit quid sit felicitas. Secundo ostendit quod praemissae sententiae concordant omnia, quae dicuntur de felicitate, ibi, scrutandum ergo de ipso et cetera. Circa primum duo facit: primo ponit quasdam communes condiciones felicitatis, quae quasi sunt omnibus manifestae; secundo inquirit felicitatis essentiam, ibi, sed forte felicitatem quidem et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ponit felicitatem esse ultimum finem. Secundo ponit conditiones, quae competunt ultimo fini, ibi, hoc autem adhuc magis explanare et cetera. 103. After the Philosopher has thoroughly discussed the opinions of others about happiness, he now gives his own opinion on the subject. He divides this treatment into two parts. In the first  he shows what happiness is. In the second [Lect. 18; II], at “Having settled these matters etc.” (B. 1101b 10), he treats a particular property of happiness. He makes a twofold division of the first part. In the first division [A] he shows what happiness is. In the second [Lect. 15], at “Many changes take place etc.” (B.1100 a 5), he solves a particular problem. In regard to the first he does two things. First [A’] he shows what happiness is. Second [Lect. 12], at “In our study of the principles etc.” (B.1098 b 8), he shows that everything said about happiness is in agreement with this doctrine. In regard to the first he does two things. First  he proposes some general notions and conditions of happiness that are obvious to nearly everyone. Second [Lect. 10; 2], at “But to say that happiness etc.” (B.1097 b 22), he inquires into the nature of happiness. In regard to the first he does two things. First [a] he states that happiness is the ultimate end. Second [b], at “We must make etc.,” he lays down the conditions belonging to the ultimate end. Dicit ergo primo, quod expeditis his, quae pertinent ad opiniones aliorum, rursus oportet redire ad bonum, circa quod nostra versatur inquisitio, scilicet ad felicitatem, ut investigemus quid sit. Circa quod primo considerandum est quod in diversis operationibus et artibus videtur aliud et aliud esse bonum intentum. Sicut in medicinali arte bonum intentum est sanitas, et in militari victoria et in aliis artibus aliquod aliud bonum. 104. Therefore, he says first that, after completing the treatise (43-102) on the opinions of others, we must again return to a consideration of the good that is the subject of our inquiry—happiness—to find out what it is. Our first consideration about it must be that in different activities and arts the good sought differs. In the medical art the good sought is health, and in the military art victory, and in other arts some other good. Et si quaeratur quid sit bonum intentum in unaquaque arte vel in unoquoque negotio, sciendum est, quod hoc est illud cuius gratia omnia alia fiunt in illa arte vel illo negotio, sicut in medicinali omnia fiunt propter sanitatem, in militari omnia fiunt propter victoriam. Et in aedificativa omnia fiunt propter domum construendam. Et similiter in quolibet alio negotio aliquod aliud est bonum intentum, cuius gratia omnia alia fiunt. Hoc autem bonum intentum in unaquaque operatione vel electione dicitur finis, quia finis nihil est aliud quam id cuius gratia alia fiunt. 105. If it be asked what good is sought in every art and in every activity, we must know that it is the object for the sake of which all other things are done. In medicine everything is done on account of health, in war everything is done on account of victory, and in architecture everything is done for the sake of the building to be constructed. Likewise, in every other activity the good sought is some one thing for the sake of which all other things are done. This good, the object of every activity or choice, is called the end, for the end is nothing else than that for the sake of which other things are done. Si ergo occurrat statim aliquis finis, ad quem ordinentur omnia quae operantur omnes artes et operationes humanae, talis finis erit operatum bonum simpliciter, idest quod intenditur ex omnibus operationibus humanis. Si autem adhuc occurrant plura bona ad quae ordinentur diversi fines diversarum artium, oportebit quod inquisitio rationis nostrae transcendat ista plura, quousque perveniat ad hoc ipsum, id est ad aliquod unum; necesse est enim unum esse ultimum finem hominis inquantum est homo, propter unitatem humanae naturae, sicut est finis unus medici inquantum est medicus propter unitatem medicinalis artis; et iste unus ultimus finis hominis dicitur humanum bonum, quod est felicitas. 106. If, therefore, there should be some end immediately apparent to which all the products of all arts and human activities are directed, such an end will be the good unqualifiedly sought, that is, the thing intended in all human operations. But if at this point many goods arise to which the different ends of different arts are ordered, our reason will have to inquire beyond this number until it arrives at this one thing, that is, some obvious good. There must be, indeed, one ultimate end for man precisely as man because of the unity of human nature, just as there is one end for a physician as physician because of the unity of the art of medicine. This ultimate end of man is called that human good which is happiness. Deinde cum dicit: hoc autem adhuc magis explanare etc., ponit duas condiciones ultimi finis: primo quidem quod sit perfectum; secundo quod sit per se sufficiens, ibi, videtur autem et ex per se sufficientia et cetera. Ultimus enim finis est ultimus terminus motus desiderii naturalis. Ad hoc autem quod aliquid sit ultimus terminus motus naturalis, duo requiruntur. Primo quidem quod sit habens speciem, non autem in via ad speciem habendam. Sicut generatio ignis non terminatur ad dispositionem formae, sed ad ipsam formam. Quod autem habet formam est perfectum, quod autem est dispositum ad formam est imperfectum. Et ideo oportet, quod bonum quod est ultimus finis, sit bonum perfectum. Secundo autem requiritur quod id quod est terminus motus naturalis sit integrum, quia natura non deficit in necessariis. Unde finis generationis humanae non est homo diminutus membro sed homo integer; et similiter etiam finis ultimus, qui est terminus desiderii, necesse est, quod sit per se sufficiens, quasi integrum bonum. 107. Then [b], at “We must make,” he lays down two conditions of the ultimate end. The first [b, i] is that it be a perfect thing; the second [b, ii], that it be self-sufficient, at “The same seems to follow etc.” The ultimate end is the ultimate term of desire’s natural inclination. But in order that something be the ultimate term of natural inclination, two things are required. First that it be a thing actually having a species and not on the way to have a species. The generation of fire, for instance, is not terminated at the disposition to the form but at the form itself. Now a thing that has form is perfect, but a thing that is merely disposed to a form is imperfect. Therefore, the good that is the ultimate end must be a perfect good. Second, the term of the natural inclination must be integral since nature is not deficient in necessary things. Hence the end of human generation is not a deformed man but a perfect man. Likewise the ultimate end that is the term of desire must be self-sufficient as an integral good. Circa perfectionem autem finalis boni considerandum est quod, sicut agens movet ad finem ita finis movet desiderium agentis; unde oportet gradus finium proportionari gradibus agentis. Est autem triplex agens. Unum quidem imperfectissimum, quod non agit per propriam formam, sed solum inquantum est motum ab alio, sicut martellus agit cultellum. Unde effectus secundum formam adeptam, non assimilatur huic agenti, sed ei a quo movetur. Aliud autem est agens perfectum, quod agit quidem secundum suam formam, unde assimilatur ei effectus, sicut ignis calefacit, sed tamen indiget moveri ab aliquo principali priori agente. Et quantum ad hoc habet aliquid imperfectionis, quasi participans cum instrumento. Tertium autem agens est perfectissimum, quod agit quidem secundum formam propriam, et ab alio non movetur. 108. In regard to the perfection of a final good we must consider that, as an agent moves towards the end, so the end moves the desire of the agent. Hence the gradations of the ends must be in proportion to the gradations of the agent. Now an agent may be of three kinds. One, the most imperfect, does not operate by its own form but only insofar as moved by another, as a hammer forges a blade. Hence, the effect in the acquired form is not like this agent but like the one who moves the agent. Another, a perfect agent, operates indeed according to its form so that the effect is like it, as fire gives off heat, but nevertheless it must be moved by some prior principal agent. In this respect it partakes imperfectly of the nature of an instrument. A third agent, the most perfect, operates according to its own form and is not moved by any other. Et similiter est in finibus. Est enim aliquid quod appetitur non propter aliquam formalem bonitatem in ipso existentem, sed solum inquantum est utile ad aliquid, sicut medicina amara. Est autem aliquid quod est quidem appetibile propter aliquid quod in se habet, et tamen appetitur propter aliud, sicut medicina sapida, et hoc est bonum perfectius. Bonum autem perfectissimum est, quod ita appetitur propter se, quod nunquam appetitur propter aliud. Hos igitur tres gradus bonorum distinguit hic philosophus. Et dicit, quod hoc quod dictum est, de ultimo fine oportet adhuc magis explanare, inquirendo scilicet conditiones, quae requiruntur ad ultimum finem. 109. The same is true in the order of ends. There we find an object desired not on account of some formal goodness existing in itself but only as useful for something else like bitter medicine. We find also an object is indeed desirable on account of what it is, but besides, it is desired for something else like sweet-tasting medicine. This is better than the first. But the most perfect good is that which is so desired for its own sake that it is never desired for the sake of anything else. Here then the Philosopher distinguishes three degrees of good. He says, as we have just stated (107-109), that we must give a more complete explanation of the ultimate end by examining the conditions required for it. Videntur autem esse plures gradus finium, quorum quosdam eligimus solum propter aliud, sicut divitias, quae non appetuntur nisi in quantum sunt utiles ad vitam hominis, et fistulas quibus canitur, et universaliter omnia organa, quae non quaeruntur nisi propter usum eorum. Unde manifestum est, quod omnes isti fines sunt imperfecti. Optimus autem finis, qui est ultimus, oportet quod sit perfectus. Unde si unum solum sit tale, oportet hoc esse ultimum finem quem quaerimus. Si autem sint multi perfecti fines, oportet quod perfectissimus horum sit optimus et ultimus. Manifestum est autem, quod sicut id quod est secundum se appetibile, est magis perfectum eo quod est appetibile propter alterum, ita illud quod nunquam appetitur propter aliud, est perfectius his quae, etsi secundum se appetantur, tamen appetuntur propter aliud. 110. There are also, it seems, many degrees of ends. Some of these we choose purely for the sake of something else, riches, for instance, which are sought for their utility in human living. Flutes on which music is made is another example. All such instruments are ends sought merely because of their usefulness. It is obvious that such ends are imperfect. The best end, namely the ultimate end, must be perfect. Therefore, if there is only one such end, it must be the ultimate end we are looking for. If, however, there are many perfect ends, the most perfect of these should be the best and the ultimate. What is desirable in itself is more perfect than what is desirable because of another. It clearly follows then that what is never desired for some thing beyond itself is more perfect than the things which, although sought for themselves, are also sought as a means. Et ita simpliciter perfectum est, quod est semper secundum se eligibile et nunquam propter aliud. Talis autem videtur esse felicitas, quam numquam eligimus propter aliud, sed semper propter seipsam. Honorem vero et voluptates et intelligentiam et virtutem eligimus quidem propter seipsa. Eligeremus enim vel appeteremus ea etiam si nihil aliud ex eis nobis proveniret. Et tamen eligimus ea propter felicitatem, inquantum per ea credimus nos futuros felices. Felicitatem autem nullus eligit propter haec nec propter aliquid aliud. Unde relinquitur quod felicitas sit perfectissimum bonorum et per consequens optimus et ultimus finis. 111. Therefore, that is absolutely perfect which is always desirable for itself and never for another. But happiness appears to be of this nature, for we never seek it for something else but always for itself. We do choose honor, pleasure, knowledge, and virtue for themselves. We would choose them or have a desire for them even if no other good would come to us through them. In fact we choose them for happiness precisely because we think we will be happy in having them. But no one chooses happiness for them or for anything else. We conclude then that happiness is the most perfect good, and consequently the ultimate and best end. Deinde cum dicit: videtur autem et ex per se sufficientia etc., agit de per se sufficientia felicitatis. Et primo quantum ad id quod pertinet ad rationem sufficientiae; secundo quantum ad id quod additur per se, ibi, amplius autem omnium et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod idem videtur sequi ex per se sufficientia, sicut et ex perfectione; scilicet quod felicitas sit optimus et ultimus finis: haec enim duo se consequuntur. Nam bonum perfectum videtur esse per se sufficiens. Si enim quantum ad aliquid non sufficit, iam non videtur perfecte desiderium quietare; et ita non erit perfectum bonum. Dicitur autem esse per se sufficiens bonum, non quia sit sufficiens soli uni homini viventi vitam solitariam, sed parentibus et filiis et uxori et amicis et civibus, ut scilicet sufficiat eis et in temporalibus providere, necessaria auxilia ministrando, et etiam in spiritualibus, instruendo vel consiliando. Et hoc ideo quia homo naturaliter est animal civile. Et ideo non sufficit suo desiderio, quod sibi provideat, sed etiam quod possit aliis providere. Sed hoc oportet intelligere usque ad aliquem terminum. 112. Then [b, ii], at “The same seems,” he treats the self-sufficiency of happiness-first [ii, x] in regard to that which pertains to the nature of sufficiency, and second [ii, y], at “Moreover, happiness etc.,” as regards the prefix “self.” He says first that the same conclusion seems to follow from self-sufficiency as well as from perfection: happiness is the best and the ultimate end. Indeed, the latter two follow one another, for the perfect good seems to be self-sufficient. If it is not sufficient in some particular, it does not perfectly satisfy desire, and so it will not be the perfect good. It is called a self-sufficient good not because it suffices merely for one man living a solitary life but also for his parents, children, wife, friends, and fellow citizens as well, so that it will adequately provide the necessaries in temporal matters, instruction and counsel in spiritual matters for them too. Such extension is required because man is a social animal, and his desire is not satisfied in providing for himself but he wants to be in a position to take care of others. This, however, must be understood within limits. Si enim aliquis velit hoc extendere non solum ad consanguineos et amicos proprios sed etiam ad amicos amicorum, procedet hoc in infinitum et sic nulli poterit talis sufficientia provenire, et ita nullus posset esse felix, si felicitas hanc infinitam sufficientiam requireret. Loquitur enim in hoc libro philosophus de felicitate, qualis in hac vita potest haberi. Nam felicitas alterius vitae omnem investigationem rationis excedit. Quis autem sit terminus usque ad quem oporteat felicem esse sufficientem, rursus perscrutandum alibi erit, scilicet in oeconomica, vel politica. 113. If someone should want to extend such care not only to his own relatives and friends but even to the friends of his friends this would go on indefinitely so that no one could have a sufficiency and therefore no one could be happy, if happiness would require such infinite sufficiency. In this work the Philosopher speaks of happiness as it is attainable in this life, for happiness in a future life is entirely beyond the investigation of reason. To what extent a man needs a sufficiency to be happy will have to be investigated again elsewhere, namely, in domestic ethics or in political science. Et quia exposuerat cui debeat esse sufficiens bonum perfectum, quod felicitas dicitur, quia scilicet non soli uni homini, sed sibi et omnibus quorum cura ad ipsum spectat, consequenter exponit quid sit quod dicitur per se sufficiens. Et dicit, quod per se sufficiens dicitur illud, quod etiam si solum habeatur, facit vitam eligibilem et nullo exteriori indigentem. Et hoc maxime convenit felicitati; alioquin non terminaret motum desiderii, si extra ipsam remaneret aliquid, quo homo indigeret. Omnis enim indigens desiderat adipisci id quo indiget. Unde manifestum est, quod felicitas est bonum per se sufficiens. 114. Because he has already shown (112-113) that the perfect good called happiness ought to be sufficient not for one man alone but for all whose care is incumbent upon him, next he explains the nature of what is called self-sufficient. He says that the self-sufficient is that which, even when had by itself, makes life desirable and free from want. Happiness does this eminently, otherwise it would not terminate the inclination of desire if something that man needed remained outside it. Certainly everyone in need desires to have what he lacks. Hence it is clear that happiness is a self-sufficient good. Deinde cum dicit: amplius autem omnium etc., exponit rationem per se sufficientiae, quantum ad hoc quod dicit per se. Dicitur autem aliquid per se sufficiens, ex eo quod seorsum ab aliis acceptum sufficiens est. Quod quidem potest dupliciter contingere. Uno modo sic, quod illud bonum perfectum quod dicitur per se sufficiens, non possit recipere augmentum bonitatis ex alio bono addito, et haec quidem est conditio eius, quod est totale bonum, scilicet Dei; sicut enim pars connumerata toti non est aliquid maius quam totum, quia ipsa pars in toto includitur, ita etiam quodcumque bonum connumeratum Deo non facit aliquod augmentum bonitatis quia nihil est bonum nisi per hoc, quod participat bonitatem divinam. Aliquid autem dicitur etiam solitarium, vel nullo alio connumerato, esse sufficiens, inquantum continet omne illud, quo indiget homo ex necessitate. 115. Then [ii, y], at “Moreover,” he explains the nature of self-sufficiency as regards the expression “self.” A thing is said to be self-sufficient when, taken apart from other things, it is sufficient. This can happen in two ways. First in such a manner that the perfect good, which is called self-sufficient, would be incapable of receiving an increase of goodness from another-a condition of the being that is totally good, God. As an additional part is not greater than the whole since the part itself is included in the whole, so too any good whatsoever added to God does not increase His goodness because the addition is good only by participating in the divine goodness. Likewise, a thing taken alone, no addition being made, is said to be sufficient in that it has everything a man absolutely needs. Et sic felicitas de qua nunc loquitur habet per se sufficientiam, quia scilicet in se continet omne illud quod est homini necessarium, non autem omne illud quod potest homini advenire. Unde potest melior fieri aliquo alio addito; nec tamen remanet desiderium hominis inquietum, quia desiderium ratione regulatum, quale oportet esse felicis, non habet inquietudinem de his quae non sunt necessaria, licet sint possibilia adipisci. Hoc est ergo quod dicit maxime inter omnia convenire felicitati, quod ipsa etiam non connumerata aliis sit eligibilis, sed tamen, si connumeretur alicui alteri etiam minimo bonorum, manifestum est, quod erit eligibilior. Cuius ratio est quia per appositionem fit superabundantia vel augmentum bonitatis, quanto autem aliquid est magis bonum, tanto est magis eligibile. 116. In this sense happiness, the subject of our present discussion, has self-sufficiency because of itself it furnishes everything that is absolutely necessary, but it does not supply everything that can come to a man. Man can be made better by an additional good. But a man’s desire for this does not remain unsatisfied because a desire controlled by reason, such as a truly happy man should have, is undisturbed by the things that are unnecessary even though attainable. Happiness, therefore, has this quality above everything else; it is desirable even when not augmented by other goods. However, if it does receive an addition, be it ever so small, surely that is even more desirable. The reason is that by the accession, a superabundance or an increase of good is effected, and because something is a greater good, it is more desirable. Ultimo autem concludit epilogando quod dictum est, scilicet quod felicitas, cum sit omnium operatorum ultimus finis, est perfectum bonum et per se sufficiens. 117. Last, he repeats in the epilogue the conclusion of what has been established (104-116), namely, that since happiness is the ultimate end of all our activities, it is the perfect good and self-sufficient.
The Definition of Happiness
2. HE... EXAMINES ITS DEFINITION. a. He shows the necessity of this inquiry. — 118 ἀλλ' ἴσως τὴν μὲν εὐδαιμονίαν τὸ ἄριστον λέγειν ὁμολογούμενόν τι φαίνεται, ποθεῖται δ' ἐναργέστερον τί ἐστιν ἔτι λεχθῆναι. But to say that happiness is the best of goods seems merely to state some thing already perfectly obvious. How ever, since we wish to bring out more clearly what it is, we must investigate the matter further. b. He searches for the definition of happiness. i. First he inquires into its genus. x. HE SHOWS THAT HAPPINESS CONSISTS IN AN ACTIVITY OF MAN. — 119-120 τάχα δὴ γένοιτ' ἂν τοῦτ', εἰ ληφθείη τὸ ἔργον τοῦ ἀνθρώπου. ὥσπερ γὰρ αὐλητῇ καὶ ἀγαλματοποιῷ καὶ παντὶ τεχνίτῃ, καὶ ὅλως ὧν ἔστιν ἔργον τι καὶ πρᾶξις, ἐν τῷ ἔργῳ δοκεῖ τἀγαθὸν εἶναι καὶ τὸ εὖ, οὕτω δόξειεν ἂν καὶ ἀνθρώπῳ, εἴπερ ἔστι τι ἔργον αὐτοῦ. Perhaps this can be done by considering the activity of man. As the good of a flute player or sculptor or any artist, or of anyone who has some special activity, seems to consist in that activity and its skillful performance, so also the good of man who has an activity characteristic of himself precisely as man. y. HE SHOWS THAT THERE IS AN ACTIVITY PROPER TO MAN. aa. First by activities incidental to man. — 121 πότερον οὖν τέκτονος μὲν καὶ σκυτέως ἔστιν ἔργα τινὰ καὶ πράξεις, ἀνθρώπου δ' οὐδέν ἐστιν, ἀλλ' ἀργὸν πέφυκεν; Have a weaver and a tanner a special work and activity while man precisely as man has none? Is he left by nature without a purpose? bb. Second,... by means of the human members. — 122 ἢ καθάπερ ὀφθαλμοῦ καὶ χειρὸς καὶ ποδὸς καὶ ὅλως ἑκάστου τῶν μορίων φαίνεταί τι ἔργον, οὕτω καὶ ἀνθρώπου παρὰ πάντα ταῦτα θείη τις ἂν ἔργον τι; If the eye, hand, foot, and each member have a proper operation, surely we will not refuse to concede an activity proper to man as man. z. HE SHOWS WHICH IS MAN’S PROPER ACTIVITY. — 123-126 τί οὖν δὴ τοῦτ' ἂν εἴη ποτέ; τὸ μὲν γὰρ ζῆν κοινὸν εἶναι φαίνεται καὶ τοῖς φυτοῖς, ζητεῖται δὲ τὸ ἴδιον. ἀφοριστέον ἄρα τήν τε θρεπτικὴν καὶ τὴν αὐξητικὴν ζωήν. ἑπομένη δὲ αἰσθητική τις ἂν εἴη, φαίνεται δὲ καὶ αὐτὴ κοινὴ καὶ ἵππῳ καὶ βοῒ καὶ παντὶ ζώῳ. λείπεται δὴ πρακτική τις τοῦ λόγον ἔχοντος· τούτου δὲ τὸ μὲν ὡς ἐπιπειθὲς λόγῳ, τὸ δ' ὡς ἔχον καὶ διανοούμενον. διττῶς δὲ καὶ ταύτης λεγομένης τὴν κατ' ἐνέργειαν θετέον· κυριώτερον γὰρ αὕτη δοκεῖ λέγεσθαι. What therefore will it be? Life belongs even to plants and we are in search of something characteristic of man. The life of nutrition and growth must then be ruled out. Even the life of sense experience, which is a step higher, is shared with the horse, cow, and other animals. The remaining type of life belongs to the rational part of man and finds its expression in. actions. This rational part either follows the dictates of reason, or it possesses and exercises the power of understanding. Of the two functions, the latter seems the more correct, for when we speak of reasoning, we signify the exercise of our rational powers. ii. (He inquires) into its differences. x. HE DIVIDES THE INQUIRY INTO TWO PARTS (FIRST). — 127-128 εἰ δ' ἐστὶν ἔργον ἀνθρώπου ψυχῆς ἐνέργεια κατὰ λόγον ἢ μὴ ἄνευ λόγου, τὸ δ' αὐτό φαμεν ἔργον εἶναι τῷ γένει τοῦδε καὶ τοῦδε σπουδαίου, ὥσπερ κιθαριστοῦ καὶ σπουδαίου κιθαριστοῦ, καὶ ἁπλῶς δὴ τοῦτ' ἐπὶ πάντων, προστιθεμένης τῆς κατὰ τὴν ἀρετὴν ὑπεροχῆς πρὸς τὸ ἔργον· κιθαριστοῦ μὲν γὰρ κιθαρίζειν, σπουδαίου δὲ τὸ εὖ· εἰ δ' οὕτως, [ἀνθρώπου δὲ τίθεμεν ἔργον ζωήν τινα, ταύτην δὲ ψυχῆς ἐνέργειαν καὶ πράξεις μετὰ λόγου, σπουδαίου δ' ἀνδρὸς εὖ ταῦτα καὶ καλῶς, ἕκαστον δ' εὖ κατὰ τὴν οἰκείαν ἀρετὴν ἀποτελεῖται· εἰ δ' οὕτω,] τὸ ἀνθρώπινον ἀγαθὸν ψυχῆς ἐνέργεια γίνεται κατ' ἀρετήν, εἰ δὲ πλείους αἱ ἀρεταί, κατὰ τὴν ἀρίστην καὶ τελειοτάτην. The function of man, therefore, is activity of the soul according to reason or at least not independent of reason. Now as a rule we classify in the same way the function of an artist and of a skillful artist, of a flute player and of a good flute player. This applies generally where skill is an addition to the function, for a flute player is one who plays the flute and a good flute player one who plays the flute well. If then we place the function of man in a certain kind of life, that is, of an activity of the soul according to reason, it will be proper to a good man to act well and to the best of his ability according to reason. In every case the good of man will consist in action conformable to virtue, and if there are a number of virtues, action conformable to the best and most perfect of them. y. HE BEGINS THE SECOND PART. — 129-130 ἔτι δ' ἐν βίῳ τελείῳ. μία γὰρ χελιδὼν ἔαρ οὐ ποιεῖ, οὐδὲ μία ἡμέρα· οὕτω δὲ οὐδὲ μακάριον καὶ εὐδαίμονα μία ἡμέρα οὐδ' ὀλίγος χρόνος. Further, it must extend to a complete life. A single swallow or one good day does not mean that spring has come. So one day (of goodness) or a short practice of virtue does not make a man blessed and happy.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Sed forte felicitatem quidem et cetera. Postquam philosophus posuit quasdam conditiones felicitatis, hic investigat definitionem eius. Et circa hoc tria facit. Primo ostendit necessitatem huius inquisitionis. Secundo venatur definitionem felicitatis, ibi, forte utique fiet hoc, et cetera. Tertio ostendit quod praemissa definitio non est sufficiens, sed adhuc oportet amplius dicere, ibi: circumscribatur quidem igitur et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod omnes confitentur felicitatem esse aliquid optimum ad quod pertinet quod felicitas sit ultimus finis et perfectum bonum et per se sufficiens. Sed adhuc manifestius oportet dici aliquid de felicitate, ut sciatur quid ipsa sit in speciali. 118. After the Philosopher has laid down certain conditions of happiness, he here  examines its definition. Concerning this he does three things. First [2, a] he shows the necessity of this inquiry. Second [2, b], at “Perhaps this can be done etc.,” he searches for the definition of happiness. Third [Lect. 11], at “In this way, therefore etc.” (B. 1098 a 20), he shows that the definition given is insufficient and further inquiry must be made. He says first that all admit that happiness is the very best of things including the belief that it is the ultimate end and the perfect self-sufficient good. But it is rather obvious that some clarification must be made about happiness to give us a knowledge of its specific nature. Deinde cum dicit: forte utique etc., investigat definitionem felicitatis. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo inquirit genus eius. Secundo differentias eius, ibi: si autem est opus hominis et cetera. Circa primum tria facit. Primo ostendit quod felicitas est operatio hominis. Secundo ostendit quod hominis sit aliqua propria operatio, ibi: utrum igitur textoris quidem etc.; tertio ostendit, quae sit propria operatio hominis, ibi: quid igitur hoc utique erit et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod quid sit felicitas poterit manifestum esse si sumatur operatio hominis. Cuiuslibet enim rei habentis propriam operationem, bonum suum et hoc quod bene est ei consistit in eius operatione. Sicut tibicinis bonum consistit in eius operatione. Et similiter eius qui facit statuam, et cuiuslibet artificis. Et huius ratio est, quia bonum finale cuiuslibet rei est ultima eius perfectio. Forma autem est perfectio prima, sed operatio est perfectio secunda. Si autem aliqua res exterior dicatur esse finis, hoc non erit nisi mediante operatione, per quam scilicet homo ad rem illam attingit vel faciendo, sicut aedificator domum, aut utitur seu fruitur ea. Et sic relinquitur quod finale bonum cuiuslibet rei in eius operatione sit requirendum. Si igitur hominis est aliqua operatio propria, necesse est, quod in eius operatione propria consistat finale bonum ipsius, quod est felicitas, et ita genus felicitatis est propria operatio hominis. 119. Then [2, b], at “Perhaps this,” he investigates the definition of happiness in a twofold manner. First [b, i] he inquires into its genus, and second [b, ii], at “The function of man,” into its differences. The first point requires a threefold procedure. First [i, x] he shows that happiness consists in an activity of man. Second [i, y], at “Have a weaver etc.,” he shows that there is an activity proper to man. Third [i, z], at “What therefore etc.,” he shows which is man’s proper activity. He says first that the nature of happiness can be made evident by consideration of human activity. When a thing has a proper operation, the good of the thing and its well-being consist in that operation. Thus the good of a flute player consists in his playing, and similarly the good of the sculptor and of every artist in their respective activity. The reason is that the final good of everything is its ultimate perfection, and the form is its first perfection while its operation is the second. If some exterior thing be called an end, this will be only because of an operation by which a man comes in contact with that thing, either by making it as a builder makes a house, or by using or enjoying it. Accordingly, the final good of everything must be found in its operation. If then man has some characteristic activity, his final good which is happiness must consist in this. Consequently, happiness is the proper operation of man. Si autem dicatur in aliquo alio felicitas consistere, aut hoc erit aliquid quo homo redditur idoneus ad huiusmodi operationem, aut erit aliquid ad quod per suam operationem attingit, sicut Deus dicitur esse beatitudo hominis. 120. But if happiness is said to consist in something else, either this will be a thing fitting man for an operation of this kind, or it will be something he attains by his operation, as God is said to be the beatitude of man. Deinde cum dicit: utrum igitur textoris etc., probat quod sit aliqua propria operatio hominis. Et hoc dupliciter. Primo quidem per ea quae accidunt homini. Accidit enim homini, quod sit textor, vel coriarius, aut grammaticus, vel musicus sive aliquid aliud huiusmodi. Sed nihil istorum est, quod non habeat propriam operationem. Alioquin sequeretur quod huiusmodi otiose et frustra homini advenirent. Multo autem magis inconveniens quod sit otiosum et frustra id quod est secundum naturam, quod est ordinatum ratione divina, quam id quod est secundum artem, quod est ordinatum ratione humana. Cum igitur homo sit aliquid existens secundum naturam, impossibile est, quod sit naturaliter otiosus, quasi non habens propriam operationem. Est igitur aliqua operatio hominis propria, sicut eorum quae ei accidunt. Cuius causa est, quia unumquodque, vel naturale vel artificiale, est per aliquam formam, quae est alicuius operationis principium. Unde sicut unaquaeque res habet proprium esse per suam formam, ita etiam et propriam operationem. 121. Then [i, y], at “Have a weaver,” he proves in two ways that there is an operation proper to man. He does this first [y, aa] by activities that are incidental to man. It may happen that a man is a weaver, tanner, grammarian, musician, or anything else of the kind. In none of these capacities does he lack a proper operation, for otherwise he would possess them as empty and useless things. Now it is far more unfitting that a thing ordained by divine reason, as is the naturally existent, should be unprofitable and useless than a thing arranged by human reason. Since, therefore, man is a being possessing a natural existence, it is impossible that he should be by nature without a purpose, or a proper operation. There is then a proper operation of man no less than of the abilities that are incidental to him. The reason is that everything, either natural or acquired by art, exists by means of its form which is a principle of some operation. Hence as each thing has a proper existence by its form so also does it have a proper operation. Secundo ibi: vel quemadmodum oculi etc., ostendit idem per hominis partes. Eamdem enim operationem oportet existimare in toto et in partibus; quia sicut anima est actus totius corporis, ita partes animae quaedam sunt actus quarumdam partium corporis, ut visus oculi. Sed quaelibet pars hominis habet propriam operationem, sicut oculi operatio est videre, et manus palpare et pedis ambulare et sic de aliis particulis; relinquitur ergo quod etiam totius hominis sit aliqua propria operatio. 122. Second [y, bb], at “If the eye,” he proves the same truth by means of the human members. We must consider that the same mode of operation is found in the whole and in the parts of man, because, as the soul is the act of the whole body, so certain powers of the soul are acts of certain parts of the body, as sight is of the eye. But each part of man has a proper operation; for example, the operation of the eye is seeing; and of the hand, touching; and of the feet, walking; and so of the other parts. We conclude, therefore, that some operation proper to man as a whole exists. Deinde cum dicit: quid igitur hoc etc., inquirit quae sit propria operatio hominis. Manifestum est autem quod propria operatio uniuscuiusque rei est quae competit ei secundum suam formam. Forma autem hominis est anima, cuius actus dicitur vivere; non quidem secundum quod vivere est esse viventis, sed secundum quod vivere dicitur aliquod opus vitae, puta intelligere vel sentire; unde manifestum est, quod in aliquo opere vitae consistit hominis felicitas. 123. Then [i, z], at “What therefore, he explores the nature of the operation proper to man. Now it is evident that each thing has an operation which belongs to it according to its form. But the form of man is his soul, whose act is life, not indeed life as the mere existence of a living thing, but a special vital operation, for example, understanding or feeling. Hence happiness obviously consists in some vital operation. Non autem potest dici, quod secundum quodcumque vivere attenditur hominis felicitas, quia vivere est commune etiam plantis, sed felicitas quaeritur sicut quoddam proprium hominis bonum. Dicitur enim bonum humanum. Pari autem ratione etiam species vitae quae dicitur nutritiva vel augmentativa separanda est a felicitate, quia haec etiam communia sunt plantis. Et ex hoc accipi potest, quod felicitas non consistit neque in sanitate, neque in pulchritudine, neque in fortitudine, neque in proceritate corporis. Omnia enim haec acquiruntur per operationes huius vitae. 124. It cannot be said that man’s happiness should arise from any kind of life, for even plants have life. But happiness is sought as a good characteristic of man since it is called a human good. Likewise, happiness must be different from the life of nutrition or growth, which even vegetables posses. From this we take it that happiness does not consist in health, beauty, strength, or great stature, for all these things result from activities of vegetative life. Post vitam autem nutritivam et augmentativam sequitur vita sensitiva. Quae etiam non est propria homini, sed convenit etiam equo et bovi et cuilibet animali. Unde nec in hac vita consistit felicitas. Et ex hoc accipi potest, quod humana felicitas non consistit in aliqua sensibili cognitione seu delectatione. 125. On the step above the life of mere nutrition and growth is the life of sense experience. Again, this is not proper to man but is possessed by horses, oxen, and other animals. In this kind of life, then, happiness does not consist. So we. conclude that human happiness is not found in any form of sense perception or pleasure. Post vitam autem nutritivam et sensitivam non relinquitur nisi vita quae est operativa secundum rationem. Quae quidem vita propria est homini. Nam homo speciem sortitur ex hoc quod est rationalis. Sed rationale est duplex. Unum quidem participative, inquantum scilicet persuadetur et regulatur a ratione. Aliud vero est rationale essentialiter, quod scilicet habet ex seipso ratiocinari et intelligere. Et haec quidem pars principalius rationalis dicitur, nam illud quod dicitur per se, semper est principalius eo quod est per aliud. Quia igitur felicitas est principalissimum bonum hominis, consequens est, ut magis consistat in eo quod pertinet ad id quod est rationale per essentiam quam in eo quod pertinet ad id quod est rationale per participationem. Ex quo potest accipi, quod felicitas principalius consistit in vita contemplativa quam in activa; et in actu rationis vel intellectus, quam in actu appetitus ratione regulati. 126. Beyond the life of assimilation and of sense experience there remains only the life that functions according to reason. This life is proper to man, for he receives his specific classification from the fact that he is rational. Now the rational has two parts. One is rational by participation insofar as it is obedient to and is regulated by reason. The other is rational by nature as it can of itself reason and understand. The rational by nature is more properly called rational because a thing possessed intrinsically is always more proper than a thing received from another. Since, therefore, happiness is the most proper good of man, it more likely consists in the rational by nature than in the rational by participation. From this we can see that happiness will more properly be found in the life of thought than in a life of activity, and in an act of reason or intellect than in an act of the appetitive power controlled by reason. Deinde cum dicit: si autem (est) opus hominis etc., investigat differentias felicitatis. Et dividitur in partes duas, secundum duas differentias quas investigat. Secunda pars incipit ibi, amplius autem, et cetera. Primo igitur accipit ex praemissis quod proprium opus hominis sit operatio animae, quae est secundum ipsam rationem, vel non sine ratione. Quod dicit propter operationem appetitus regulati ratione. Hoc autem in omnibus communiter invenitur, quod idem est opus alicuius rei in genere acceptae et opus illius rei si sit bona: nisi quod oportet apponere ex parte operationis id quod pertinet ad virtutem. Sicut opus citharistae est citharizare. Opus autem boni citharistae est bene citharizare. Et similiter est in omnibus aliis. 127, Then [b, ii], at “The function of man,” he inquires into the specific differences of happiness. He divides the inquiry into two parts [ii, x] according to the two specific differences investigated, and he begins the second part [ii, y] at “Further, it must extend etc.” First then we know from the premises (126) that the proper function of a man is a psychic activity in accord with reason itself or at least not independent of reason. The latter is mentioned because of the activity of the appetite controlled by reason. Now as a rule we find that the function of a thing generally and the efficient activity of that thing are of the same nature, except that allowance must be made for the part played by skill. For example, the function of a harpist is to play the harp, and the function of a good harpist is to play the harp well. The same is true of all other functions. Si igitur opus hominis consistit in quadam vita, prout scilicet homo operatur secundum rationem, sequitur quod boni hominis sit bene operari secundum rationem, et optimi hominis, scilicet felicis, optime hoc facere. Sed hoc pertinet ad rationem virtutis, quod unusquisque habens virtutem secundum eam bene operetur sicut virtus equi est secundum quam bene currit. Si ergo operatio optimi hominis, scilicet felicis, est ut bene et optime operetur secundum rationem, sequitur quod humanum bonum, scilicet felicitas, sit operatio secundum virtutem: ita scilicet quod si est una tantum virtus hominis, operatio quae est secundum illam virtutem, erit felicitas. Si autem sunt plures virtutes hominis, erit felicitas operatio quae est secundum optimam illarum, quia felicitas non solum est bonum hominis, sed optimum. 128. If, therefore, man’s proper role consists in living a certain kind of life, namely, according to the activity of reason, it follows that it is proper to a good man to act well according to reason, and to the very good man or the happy man to do this in superlative fashion. But this belongs to the nature of virtue that everyone who has virtue should act well according to it, as a horse with good training or “virtue” should run well. If, then, the activity of the very good man or the happy man is to act well, in fact to act to the best of his ability according to reason, it follows that the good of man, which is happiness, is an activity according to virtue. If there is only one virtue for man, his activity according to that virtue will be happiness. If there are a number of such virtues for man, happiness will be the activity according to the best of them. The reason is that happiness is not only the good of man but the best good. Deinde cum dicit: amplius autem in vitam perfectam etc., investigat aliam differentiam felicitatis. Requiritur enim ad felicitatem continuitas et perpetuitas quantum possibile est. Hoc enim naturaliter appetitus habentis intellectum desiderat, utpote apprehendens non solum esse ut nunc sicut sensus, sed etiam esse simpliciter. Cum autem esse sit secundum seipsum appetibile, consequens est, quod sicut animal per sensum apprehendens esse ut nunc, appetit nunc esse, ita etiam homo per intellectum apprehendens esse simpliciter, appetit esse simpliciter et semper et non solum ut nunc. Et ideo de ratione perfectae felicitatis est continuitas et perpetuitas, quam tamen praesens vita non patitur. Unde in praesenti vita non potest esse perfecta felicitas. Oportet tamen quod felicitas qualem possibile est esse praesentis vitae, sit in vitam perfectam, id est per totam hominis vitam. Sicut enim una hirundo veniens non demonstrat ver, nec una dies temperata, ita etiam nec una operatio semel facta facit hominem felicem, sed quando homo per totam vitam continuat bonam operationem. 129. Then [ii, y], at “Further, it must extend,” he inquires into the other specific difference of happiness. Continuity and perpetuity, to some extent, are also required for happiness. These qualities are naturally desired by the appetite of a person endowed with reason, who apprehends not a particular being, as our senses do, but also being in itself. Now being is of itself desirable. It follows then that, as an animal which apprehends a particular being by its senses desires that particular being, so also man apprehending being in itself desires it as always existing and not this particular being alone. So continuity and perpetuity, which are not found in the present life, belong to the nature of perfect happiness. Hence perfect happiness cannot be had in this life. However,the happiness attainable here must extend to a complete life, that is through the whole life of man. As the sight of a single swallow or one clear day does not prove that spring is here, so a single good deed is not enough to make a man happy. It arises rather form the continued performance of good deeds throughout his whole life. Sic ergo patet, quod felicitas est operatio propria hominis secundum virtutem in vita perfecta. 130. From this discussion, therefore, it is clear that happiness is a virtue-oriented activity proper to man in a complete life.
The Task Before Us
Chapter 7 3. HE NOW SHOWS WHAT MAY STILL REMAIN TO BE DONE. a. He indicates first what remains to be done. i. He manifests what has been done and what remains to be done. — 131 περιγεγράφθω μὲν οὖν τἀγαθὸν ταύτῃ· δεῖ γὰρ ἴσως ὑποτυπῶσαι πρῶτον, εἶθ' ὕστερον ἀναγράψαι. In this way, therefore, the good of happiness has been sketched, for the proper procedure is first to study a subject according to its general notions and afterwards to explain it more fully. ii. He assigns the reason for the statement just made. — 132 δόξειε δ' ἂν παντὸς εἶναι προαγαγεῖν καὶ διαρθρῶσαι τὰ καλῶς ἔχοντα τῇ περιγραφῇ, It would indeed seem a reasonable mode of procedure to make a sketch of the matter and then to investigate its features one by one. iii. He shows how a man may be helped in this procedure. — 133-134 καὶ ὁ χρόνος τῶν τοιούτων εὑρετὴς ἢ συνεργὸς ἀγαθὸς εἶναι· ὅθεν καὶ τῶν τεχνῶν γεγόνασιν αἱ ἐπιδόσεις· παντὸς γὰρ προσθεῖναι τὸ ἐλλεῖπον. In this matter time seems to be, as it were, a good discoverer and a special assistant. Thus improvements in the arts have been due to successive artists, each making his own contribution. b. (He indicates) how this should be done. i. He presents this in general. — 135 μεμνῆσθαι δὲ καὶ τῶν προειρημένων χρή, καὶ τὴν ἀκρίβειαν μὴ ὁμοίως ἐν ἅπασιν ἐπιζητεῖν, ἀλλ' ἐν ἑκάστοις κατὰ τὴν ὑποκειμένην ὕλην καὶ ἐπὶ τοσοῦτον ἐφ' ὅσον οἰκεῖον τῇ μεθόδῳ. We must recall what was said before, that the same certitude is not to be expected in all sciences but in each according to the subject matter, and that the degree of certitude should be suited to the subject taught. ii. He makes specific what he has said. x. HE TAKES UP WHAT MUST BE HANDLED DIFFERENTLY FOR DIFFERENT SUBJECTS. aa. The first... is the difference between a practical and a speculative science. — 136 καὶ γὰρ τέκτων καὶ γεωμέτρης διαφερόντως ἐπιζητοῦσι τὴν ὀρθήν· ὃ μὲν γὰρ ἐφ' ὅσον χρησίμη πρὸς τὸ ἔργον, ὃ δὲ τί ἐστιν ἢ ποῖόν τι· θεατὴς γὰρ τἀληθοῦς. τὸν αὐτὸν δὴ τρόπον καὶ ἐν τοῖς ἄλλοις ποιητέον, ὅπως μὴ τὰ πάρεργα τῶν ἔργων πλείω γίνηται. For a carpenter and a geometrician both study a straight line, but for different reasons. The carpenter does so to the extent that this is useful in his work; the geometrician as a student of truth wants to learn what a line is and how it differs from other figures. This distinction must be observed in other practical sciences lest they be burdened with discussions that are out of place. bb. He treats a second difference. — 137 οὐκ ἀπαιτητέον δ' οὐδὲ τὴν αἰτίαν ἐν ἅπασιν ὁμοίως, ἀλλ' ἱκανὸν ἔν τισι τὸ ὅτι δειχθῆναι καλῶς, οἷον καὶ περὶ τὰς ἀρχάς· τὸ δ' ὅτι πρῶτον καὶ ἀρχή. τῶν ἀρχῶν δ' αἳ μὲν ἐπαγωγῇ θεωροῦνται, αἳ δ' αἰσθήσει, αἳ δ' ἐθισμῷ τινί, καὶ ἄλλαι δ' ἄλλως. Likewise, we must not seek causes equally in all matters but in some it suffices to establish a fact. This is the case with the first principles of a science since a principle is a starting point. Now, we understand some principles by induction, some by observation, some by custom and others in other ways. y. (HE TAKES UP) WHAT MUST BE OBSERVED GENERALLY IN ALL SUBJECTS. — 138 μετιέναι δὲ πειρατέον ἑκάστας ᾗ πεφύκασιν, καὶ σπουδαστέον ὅπως διορισθῶσι καλῶς· μεγάλην γὰρ ἔχουσι ῥοπὴν πρὸς τὰ ἑπόμενα. In all cases we must strive for a thorough knowledge of each set of principles according to their nature and must study how to define them properly. δοκεῖ γὰρ πλεῖον ἢ ἥμισυ τοῦ παντὸς εἶναι ἡ ἀρχή, καὶ πολλὰ συμφανῆ γίνεσθαι δι' αὐτῆς τῶν ζητουμένων. Principles are a great help in understanding what follows. Indeed a single principle seems to be more than half of the whole, for it furnishes answers to many of our questions.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Circumscribatur quidem igitur bonum et cetera. Postquam philosophus investigavit diffinitionem felicitatis, nunc ostendit quid post hoc agendum relinquatur. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo ostendit quid restat agendum. Secundo quomodo id agere oporteat, ibi, meminisse autem et praedictorum oportet et cetera. Circa primum tria facit. Primo proponit quid sit factum et quid restet agendum. Et dicit, quod ita sicut supra habitum est, circumscribitur bonum finale hominis, quod est felicitas. Et vocat circumscriptionem notificationem alicuius rei per aliqua communia quae ambiunt quidem ipsam rem, non tamen adhuc per ea in speciali declaratur natura illius rei. Quia, ut ipse subdit, oportet quod aliquid primo dicatur figuraliter, id est secundum quandam similitudinariam et extrinsecam quodammodo descriptionem; et deinde oportet ut manifestatis quibusdam aliis resumatur illud quod fuit prius figuraliter determinatum, et sic iterato plenius describatur. Unde et ipse postmodum in fine libri de felicitate tractatum complebit. 131. After the Philosopher has investigated the definition of happiness itself, he now  shows in a twofold fashion what may still remain to be done. He indicates first [3, a] what remains to be done, and second [3, b], at “We must recall etc.,” how this should be done. In regard to the initial point he does three things. First [a, i] he manifests what has been done and what remains to be done. He says that the final good of man which is happiness has been previously sketched (103-130). By a sketch he understands that knowledge through some common principles which indeed give a picture of the matter but not in such a way that the nature of that thing in particular is manifested. The reason for this is, as he himself says, that a thing should first be studied according to its general characteristics, i.e., by a general description which is like it and in a way extrinsic to it. Then with other matters clarified, we must take up what was previously sketched roughly and etch in the lines more sharply. For this reason he himself will take up in greater detail the treatise on happiness toward the end of this work (Bk. X, Ch. 6-8, 1176 a 30-1179 a 33; St. Th. Lect. 9-13, 2065-2136). Secundo ibi: videbitur autem utique etc., assignat rationem eius quod dictum est, hoc enim ad naturam cuiuslibet hominis pertinere videtur, ut ea quae bene continent descriptionem alicuius rei perducat, scilicet de imperfecto ad perfectum, et particulatim disponat, primo scilicet unam partem, et postea aliam investigando. Ad hominis enim naturam pertinet ratione uti ad veritatis cognitionem. Rationis autem proprium est ab uno in aliud procedere, intellectus autem proprium est statim apprehendere veritatem; et ideo ad hominem pertinet ut paulatim in cognitione veritatis proficiat, substantiae vero separatae, quae intellectuales dicuntur, statim absque inquisitionem notitiam veritatis habent. 132. Second [a, ii], at “It would indeed seem,” he assigns the reason for the statement just made (131) saying that it seems natural for man to advance from the imperfect knowledge which covers a good description things to a perfect knowledge of them by filling in the details. This he does by investigating first one part and then another, for it is according to man’s nature to proceed by the steps of reason to a knowledge of the truth. Reason has this peculiar characteristic that it grasps the truth gradually, and as a consequence man properly perfects himself in knowledge little by little. On the contrary, separated or intellectual substances attain at once to the knowledge of the truth without any such investigation. Tertio ibi: et tempus talium etc., ostendit per quid homo ad praedicta iuvetur. Et dicit quod eorum, quae bene se habent ad aliquid circumscribendum videtur tempus esse quasi adinventor, vel bonus cooperator: non quidem quod tempus per se ad hoc aliquid operetur sed secundum ea quae in tempore aguntur. Si enim aliquis tempore procedente det se studio investigandae veritatis, iuvatur ex tempore ad veritatem inveniendam et quantum ad unum et eumdem hominem qui postea videbit quod prius non viderat, et etiam quantum ad diversos, utpote cum aliquis intuetur ea quae sunt a praedecessoribus adinventa et aliquid superaddit. Et per hunc modum facta sunt additamenta in artibus, quarum a principio aliquid modicum fuit adinventum, et postmodum per diversos paulatim profecit in magnam quantitatem, quia ad quemlibet pertinet superaddere id quod deficit in consideratione praedecessorum. 133. Third [a, iii], at “In this matter time,” he shows how a man may be helped in this procedure. He says that time seems to be, as it were, a discoverer of things well suited to sketch a subject and to be of special assistance in the work. The meaning is not that time itself contributes anything but that this help comes with time. If someone should busy himself investigating the truth for a period, he will be aided in the discovery of the truth by the passage of time. This is true in the case of the same person who will understand subsequently what he had not understood before, and also for different persons~ as in the case of a man who learns the things discovered by his predecessors and adds something himself. In this way improvements have been made in the arts, in which a small discovery was made first and afterwards notable advances were made by the efforts of various men, each looking upon it as a duty to supply what is lacking in the knowledge of his predecessors. Si autem e contrario exercitium studii praetermittatur, tempus est magis causa oblivionis, ut dicitur in quarto physicorum, et quantum ad unum hominem, qui si se negligentiae dederit, obliviscetur quod scivit, et quantum ad diversos. Unde videmus multas scientias vel artes quae apud antiquos viguerunt paulatim cessantibus studiis in oblivionem abiisse. 134. But if, on the contrary, application to study be neglected, time is rather a cause of forgetfulness, as is said in the fourth book of the Physics (Ch. 12, 221 a 32; St. Th. Lect. 20, 604). We see indeed that the negligent individual forgets what he knows, and in human history we observe that many sciences which flourished among the ancients gradually have been lost when interest in them ceased. Deinde cum dicit: meminisse autem et praedictorum etc., ostendit quomodo sit prosequendum id quod restat. Et primo proponit hoc in generali, reducens ad memoriam ea quae supra in prooemio dicta sunt, quod scilicet non oportet similiter exquirere certitudinem in omnibus, sed in singulis secundum convenientiam materiae, prout scilicet est proprium illi doctrinae quae circa illam materiam versatur. 135. Then [3, b], at “We must recall,” he shows how we must follow up the remainder of our task. First [b, i] he presents this in general by recalling to mind what was said in the introduction (32, 36), that we must not look for the same certitude in all subjects but in each according to the matter, namely, that which is proper to the subject taught. Secundo ibi: et enim tector et geometra etc., manifestat, quod dixerat, in speciali. Et primo quantum ad id quod diversimode in diversis observari oportet. Secundo quantum ad id quod communiter in omnibus observandum est, ibi, pertransire autem oportet, et cetera. Circa primum tradit duplicem diversitatem. Quarum prima est secundum differentiam scientiae practicae et speculativae. Unde dicit quod tector, idest artifex operativus, et geometra, qui est speculativus, differenter inquirunt de linea recta. Artifex quidem operativus, utpote carpentarius, inquirit de linea recta quantum est utile ad opus, utpote ad secandum ligna vel aliquid aliud huiusmodi faciendum; sed geometra inquirit quid est linea recta et quale quid sit, considerando proprietates et passiones ipsius, quia geometra intendit solam speculationem veritatis. Et secundum hunc modum faciendum est in aliis scientiis operativis, ut non sequatur hoc inconveniens ut in scientia operativa fiant plures sermones ad opera non pertinentes illis sermonibus qui sunt circa opera, puta, si in hac scientia morali aliquis vellet pertractare omnia quae pertinent ad rationem et alias partes animae, oporteret plura de hoc dicere quam de ipsis operibus. Est enim in unaquaque scientia vitiosum, ut homo multum immoretur in his quae sunt extra scientiam. 136. Second [b, ii], at “For a carpenter,” he makes specific what he has said. First [ii, x] he takes up what must be handled differently for different subjects, and second [ii, y], at “In all cases we must etc.,” what must be observed generally in all subjects. In regard to the first he gives a threefold difference. The first of these [x, aa] is the difference between a practical and a speculative science. He says therefore that a carpenter, who is a practical man, and a geometrician, who is a theorist, study a straight line for different reasons. A practical—man—a carpenter studies a line insofar as it is useful for his work, in sawing wood or in doing anything else of this nature. But the geometrician investigates what a line is—its qualities and its nature by considering the properties and potentialities. He is interested only in the study of truth. We must proceed in the first way to avoid many discussions that are out of place in practical sciences. Fore instance, in moral matters we must steer clear of an exhaustive treatment of the intellect and the other powers of the soul to the neglect of the study of human acts themselves. It is a serious defect in any science to squander time on matter outside the science. Aliam autem diversitatem tangit ibi non expetendum autem et cetera. Quae attenditur secundum differentiam principiorum et eorum quae sunt ex principiis. Et dicit quod non est in omnibus eodem modo causa inquirenda. Alioquin procederetur in infinitum in demonstrationibus. Sed in quibusdam sufficit quod bene demonstretur, idest manifestetur, quoniam hoc ita est, sicut in his quae accipiuntur in aliqua scientia, ut principia: quia principium oportet esse primum. Unde non potest resolvi in aliquid prius. Ipsa autem principia non omnia eodem modo manifestantur, sed quaedam considerantur inductione, quae est ex particularibus imaginatis, sicut in mathematicis, puta quod omnis numerus est par aut impar. Quaedam vero accipiuntur sensu, sicut in naturalibus; puta quod omne quod vivit indiget nutrimento. Quaedam vero consuetudine, sicut in moralibus, utpote quod concupiscentiae diminuuntur, si eis non obediamus. Et alia etiam principia aliter manifestantur; sicut in artibus operativis accipiuntur principia per experientiam quamdam. 117. He treats a second difference at “Likewise, we must not” [x, bb]. Here he considers the difference between principles and deductions made from them. He says that the cause is not to be sought equally in all matters, otherwise we would proceed to infinity in demonstrating. But in some cases it is sufficient to show clearly that a thing is so. This is true of principles that are taken for granted in a science, since they are the beginning and cannot be reduced to anything previous. Now principles themselves are not manifested in the same way. But some are understood by induction form particular examples, for instance, that every number is even or odd. Some are taken from observation, as in nature, that every living thing needs nourishment. Some are taken from custom, as in morals, that sensual desires are diminished if we do not give into them. Still other principles are manifested in still other ways, as in the practical arts principles are learned by a sort of experience. Deinde cum dicit: pertransire autem oportet etc., determinat modum quantum ad id quod est communiter observandum in omnibus. Et dicit quod homo debet insistere ad hoc, quod singula principia pertranseat, scilicet eorum notitiam accipiendo et eis utendo, secundum quod nata sunt cognosci et studendum qualiter determinentur in hominis cognitione, ut scilicet sciat distinguere principia abinvicem et ab aliis. Cognitio enim principiorum multum adiuvat ad sequentia cognoscenda. Principium enim videtur plus esse quam dimidium totius. Quia scilicet omnia alia quae restant continentur virtute in principiis. Et hoc est quod subdit, quod per unum principium bene intellectum et consideratum, multa fiunt manifesta eorum, quae quaeruntur in scientia. 138. Then [ii, y], at “In all cases we must,” he sets down the procedure to be followed generally in all such matters. He says. that a person out to persist in going over thoroughly each set of principles, both speculatively and practically, in the way a knowledge of their nature demands and in studying how men understand them. Thus a man will learn how to distinguish one principle from an other, and one set of principles from another set. A knowledge of principles is a great help in understanding the conclusions that flow form them. Indeed a single principle seems to be more than half of the whole, since the content of a science is contained in the principles. He adds that many answers we look for in a science are clear from one principle well understood and completely thought out.
Confirmation of the Definition
Chapter 8 I. HE PROPOSES HERE TO CONFIRM THE VIEW HE HAS JUST GIVEN. A. He indicates his intention. — 139-140 σκεπτέον δὲ περὶ αὐτῆς οὐ μόνον ἐκ τοῦ συμπεράσματος καὶ ἐξ ὧν ὁ λόγος, ἀλλὰ καὶ ἐκ τῶν λεγομένων περὶ αὐτῆς· τῷ μὲν γὰρ ἀληθεῖ πάντα συνᾴδει τὰ ὑπάρχοντα, τῷ δὲ ψευδεῖ ταχὺ διαφωνεῖ τἀληθές. In our study of the principles we must carefully examine not only the conclusions and the premises from which the argument proceeds but also the considered views of others. Everything indeed will fall into agreement with what is true, and the truth will be quickly seen to be at variance with the false. B. He begins to carry it out. A’ He shows... the consensus of others is in agreement with his view. 1. HE SHOWS THAT WHAT IS COMMONLY SAID BY PHILOSOPHERS IS IN HARMONY WITH THE GIVEN DESCRIPTION OF HAPPINESS. a. He proves (this) by dividing human goods into three classes. — 141-143 νενεμημένων δὴ τῶν ἀγαθῶν τριχῇ, καὶ τῶν μὲν ἐκτὸς λεγομένων τῶν δὲ περὶ ψυχὴν καὶ σῶμα, τὰ περὶ ψυχὴν κυριώτατα λέγομεν καὶ μάλιστα ἀγαθά, τὰς δὲ πράξεις καὶ τὰς ἐνεργείας τὰς ψυχικὰς περὶ ψυχὴν τίθεμεν. ὥστε καλῶς ἂν λέγοιτο κατά γε ταύτην τὴν δόξαν παλαιὰν οὖσαν καὶ ὁμολογουμένην ὑπὸ τῶν φιλοσοφούντων. Goods have been classified as (a) external, (b) of the soul, and (c) of the body. Among these we hold that the goods of the soul are the best and most properly called goods. We attribute vital actions and operations to the soul. Therefore, our opinion must be sound for it is in agreement with that ancient one held by the philosophers. b. He proves the same thing in a different way. — 144 ὀρθῶς δὲ καὶ ὅτι πράξεις τινὲς λέγονται καὶ ἐνέργειαι τὸ τέλος· οὕτω γὰρ τῶν περὶ ψυχὴν ἀγαθῶν γίνεται καὶ οὐ τῶν ἐκτός. It was stated accurately then that we identify the end with certain acts and operations. Thus happiness will be accounted one of the goods of the soul and not an external good. 2. HE SHOWS THAT THE SAME IS TRUE FROM WHAT IS GENERALLY AFFIRMED BY EVERYONE. — 145 συνᾴδει δὲ τῷ λόγῳ καὶ τὸ εὖ ζῆν καὶ τὸ εὖ πράττειν τὸν εὐδαίμονα· σχεδὸν γὰρ εὐζωία τις εἴρηται καὶ εὐπραξία. This coincides with the common notion that one who lives well and does well is a happy man. As a matter of fact, a good life appears to be nothing else but good activity. B’ He shows that the points on which others disagree substantiate his view. 1. HE BRINGS FORWARD THE POINTS ON WHICH MEN DIFFER ABOUT HAPPINESS. a. He states what he wishes to show. — 146 φαίνεται δὲ καὶ τὰ ἐπιζητούμενα τὰ περὶ τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν ἅπανθ' ὑπάρχειν τῷ λεχθέντι. Everything that philosophers have looked for in happiness seems to be found in our notion of it. b. He gives different views on happiness. — 147-149 i. The first. τοῖς μὲν γὰρ ἀρετὴ τοῖς δὲ φρόνησις ἄλλοις δὲ σοφία τις εἶναι δοκεῖ, Some have taught that happiness consists in virtue either generally, or specifically in prudence or in wisdom. ii. The second opinion. τοῖς δὲ ταῦτα ἢ τούτων τι μεθ' ἡδονῆς ἢ οὐκ ἄνευ ἡδονῆς· Others say it consists in all or one of these virtues accompanied by pleasure, or at least not without pleasure. iii. A third opinion. ἕτεροι δὲ καὶ τὴν ἐκτὸς εὐετηρίαν συμπαραλαμβάνουσιν. Still others would include a goodly share of external goods. c. He indicates the difference in the persons holding the foregoing views. — 150 τούτων δὲ τὰ μὲν πολλοὶ καὶ παλαιοὶ λέγουσιν, τὰ δὲ ὀλίγοι καὶ ἔνδοξοι ἄνδρες· οὐδετέρους δὲ τούτων εὔλογον διαμαρτάνειν τοῖς ὅλοις, ἀλλ' ἕν γέ τι ἢ καὶ τὰ πλεῖστα κατορθοῦν. The rank and file together with some ancient philosophers held this last opinion, while a distinguished minority chose virtue. It is likely that no one was entirely wrong but each was right on one or more points. 2. HE SHOWS THAT EACH OF THESE IS IN AGREEMENT WITH THE ABOVE VIEW. a. He shows that this is true of the first opinion that virtue is happiness. i. He shows that the first opinion... is in agreement with his. — 151 τοῖς μὲν οὖν λέγουσι τὴν ἀρετὴν ἢ ἀρετήν τινα συνῳδός ἐστιν ὁ λόγος· ταύτης γάρ ἐστιν ἡ κατ' αὐτὴν ἐνέργεια. Our definition of happiness is acceptable to those who hold that happiness consists in all or in one of the virtues, for virtuous activity clearly is something belonging to it. ii. He shows how his opinion is better. x. FROM REASON. — 152 διαφέρει δὲ ἴσως οὐ μικρὸν ἐν κτήσει ἢ χρήσει τὸ ἄριστον ὑπολαμβάνειν, καὶ ἐν ἕξει ἢ ἐνεργείᾳ. τὴν μὲν γὰρ ἕξιν ἐνδέχεται μηδὲν ἀγαθὸν ἀποτελεῖν ὑπάρχουσαν, οἷον τῷ καθεύδοντι ἢ καὶ ἄλλως πως ἐξηργηκότι, τὴν δ' ἐνέργειαν οὐχ οἷόν τε· πράξει γὰρ ἐξ ἀνάγκης, καὶ εὖ πράξει. But besides, it makes a great difference whether the chief good be placed in possession or use, in habit or activity because a habit may exist in a person not actually performing any good, for instance, in one who is asleep or otherwise not engaged in any way whatsoever. This is not possible with an activity, for a man having it necessarily is active, and if the activity be virtuous he will act virtuously. y. FROM A CUSTOM AMONG MEN — 153 ὥσπερ δ' Ὀλυμπίασιν οὐχ οἱ κάλλιστοι καὶ ἰσχυρότατοι στεφανοῦνται ἀλλ' οἱ ἀγωνιζόμενοι τούτων γάρ τινες νικῶσιν, οὕτω καὶ τῶν ἐν τῷ βίῳ καλῶν κἀγαθῶν οἱ πράττοντες ὀρθῶς ἐπήβολοι γίνονται. At the Olympic games the best looking and strongest athletes do not receive the crown but the victorious competitors. So, too, among those who are good and best in virtuous living, those who perform righteous deeds become illustrious.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Scrutandum ergo de ipso et cetera. Postquam philosophus ostendit in generali quid sit felicitas, hic intendit confirmare sententiam suam, quam de felicitate praemisit, per ea quae de felicitate dicuntur. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo dicit de quo est intentio. Secundo exequitur propositum, ibi, divisis itaque, et cetera. Dicit ergo primo quod, (quia) principium maxime oportet bene determinare. Principium autem in operativis est ultimus finis. Ad hoc quod diligentior de eo consideratio habeatur, scrutandum est de hoc non solum considerando conclusiones et principia ex quibus ratiocinativus sermo procedit, sed etiam ex his quae dicuntur de ipso, idest de ultimo fine, sive de felicitate. Et huius rationem assignat, quia omnia consonant vero. Et huius ratio est, quia, ut dicetur in sexto huius, verum est bonum intellectus; bonum autem, ut dicitur in II huius, contingit uno modo, scilicet concurrentibus omnibus quae pertinent ad perfectionem rei. 139. After the Philosopher has shown in general what happiness is, he proposes here [I] to confirm the view he has just given, by what is said by others on happiness. Concerning this he does two things. First [I, A] he indicates his intention. Then [I, B ], at “Goods have been etc.,” he begins to carry it out. He says first that it is most important to have a principle thoroughly understood. The principle in practical matters is the ultimate end. To insure a more careful study of it, we must examine not only the conclusions and the premises from which the discussion of the reasoner proceeds, but also the observations of others concerning the principle itself, namely, the ultimate end or happiness. He then assigns the reason for this procedure, that everything harmonizes with the truth. This is so because, as will be said in the sixth book (1143), truth is the good of the intellect. Good, as explained later (320), is achieved only in the concurrence of all the factors pertaining to the perfection of the thing. Malum autem contingit multipliciter, scilicet per cuiuscumque debitae conditionis defectum. Non autem invenitur aliquod malum in quo totaliter sit bonum corruptum, ut dicetur in quarto huius, et ideo omnia concordant bono non solum bona, sed etiam mala, secundum hoc, quod aliquid retinent de bono. Et similiter omnia falsa concordant vero, inquantum aliquid retinent de similitudine veritatis. Non enim est possibile, quod intellectus opinantis aliquod falsum totaliter privetur cognitione veritatis. Sed per verum statim diiudicatur falsum, utpote ab eo deficiens. Et hoc est quod subdit, quod falso dissonat verum, sicut ab obliquo dissonat rectum. 140. Evil, on the contrary, comes about in a variety of ways by the defect of any single necessary qualification. No evil, however, can be found in which the good is completely corrupted, as will be shown in the fourth book (808). So not only all good things are in agreement with the good but even evil things in that they retain something of good. In a similar way all false things are in agreement with the truth insofar as they retain some likeness of truth. It is not possible that the mind holding a false opinion is completely deprived of the knowledge of the truth, because by means of the true it immediately judges something false as lacking in the truth. This is what he understands by saying that the true is at variance with the false, somewhat like a right angle with an oblique angle. Deinde cum dicit: divisis itaque bonis etc., prosequitur intentum. Et primo quantum ad ea quae ab aliis de felicitate dicuntur; secundo quantum ad ea quae supra ab ipso de felicitate sunt proposita, ibi: confessa autem haec utique erunt et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ostendit, quod praedictae sententiae de felicitate conveniunt ea quae concorditer ab aliis dicuntur. Secundo quod etiam conveniunt ei ea in quibus alii discordant, ibi, videntur autem et quaesita, et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ostendit, quod dictae descriptioni felicitatis concordant ea quae communiter a sapientibus dicuntur. Secundo ostendit idem de his quae dicuntur communiter ab omnibus, ibi, consonat autem rationi, et cetera. Primum ostendit dupliciter. 141. Then [I, B], at “Goods have been classified,” he begins to carry out his intention, first in respect to what he has affirmed about happiness. In regard to this he does two things. First [B, A’] he shows that what is the consensus of others is in agreement with his view (touching on the things said above by him at “... our opinion is in agreement”). Second [B, B’], at “Everything that philosophers etc.,” he shows that the points on which others disagree substantiate his view. In regard to the initial point he does two things. First [A’, 1] he shows that what is commonly said by philosophers is in harmony with the given description of happiness. Second [A’, 2], at “This coincides with etc.,” he shows that the same is true from what is generally affirmed by everyone. He proves the first observation in two ways, and Primo quidem dividendo bona humana in tria. Quorum quaedam sunt exteriora, sicut divitiae, honores, amici et alia huiusmodi, quaedam vero sunt interiora; et haec rursus dividuntur in duo genera. Quia quaedam eorum pertinent ad corpora, sicut robur corporis, pulchritudo et sanitas. Quaedam vero pertinent ad animam, sicut scientia et virtus et alia huiusmodi; inter quae bona principalissima et maxima sunt ea quae pertinent ad animam: nam res exteriores sunt propter hominem, corpus autem propter animam sicut materia propter formam, et instrumentum propter agens principale. Et haec est communis sententia omnium philosophorum, scilicet quod bona animae sunt principalissima. 142. initially [A, 1, a] by dividing human goods into three classes. Of these some (a) are external, as riches, honors, friends, and such like. (b) Others concern the soul, as knowledge, virtue, and the like. These are the chief goods, for external things are for the sake of the body, and the body for the sake of the soul, as matter for form and as an instrument for a principal agent. Now the common view of all philosophers is that the goods of the soul are the most important. Sed circa alia bona diversimode senserunt Stoici et Peripatetici: nam Stoici posuerunt alia bona non esse hominis bona, eo quod eis non fit homo bonus; Peripatetici autem, idest sectatores Aristotelis, posuerunt, bona quidem exteriora esse minima bona, bona autem corporis quasi media, sed bona principalissima ponebant bona animae, quibus homo fit bonus, alia vero secundum eos dicuntur bona inquantum instrumentaliter ipsis principalibus deserviunt. Et sic felicitas, cum sit principalissimum bonum, in bonis animae est ponendum. Manifestum est autem quod operationes animae ad animae bona pertinent. Unde manifestum est quod ponere felicitatem in operatione animae rationalis, ut supra diximus, conveniens est secundum hanc opinionem antiquam et communem omnibus philosophis, quod scilicet principalissima bonorum sint ea quae sunt secundum animam. 143. The Stoics and the Peripatetics held divergent views about some goods. The Stoics were of the opinion that some goods are not human goods because they do not make man better. The Peripatetics, that is, the followers of Aristotle, asserted indeed that external goods are the least of goods—the goods of the body being, as it were, means—but the chief goods in their judgment were the goods of the soul, by which man is made good. Other goods, however, according to them are called good insofar as they serve as means toward the principal goods. Thus happiness, since it is the chief good, must be numbered among the goods of the soul. Hence it is evident that the placing of happiness in an operation of the rational soul, as we said above (110-126), is in agreement with this ancient opinion common to all philosophers, that the most important goods are those belonging to the soul. Secundo ibi: recte autem etc., ostendit idem alio modo. Est enim duplex genus operationum animae. Quarum quaedam transeunt in exteriorem materiam, sicut texere et aedificare. Et huiusmodi operationes non sunt fines, sed operata ipsorum, scilicet pannus contextus, et domus aedificata. Quaedam vero operationes animae sunt in ipso operante manentes, sicut intelligere et velle. Et huiusmodi operationes ipsaemet sunt fines. Recte ergo dictum est quod ipsi actus et operationes sunt finis, dum scilicet posuimus felicitatem esse operationem, et non aliquid operatum. Sic enim felicitas ponitur aliquid bonorum quae sunt circa animam, et non aliquid eorum quae sunt exterius. Operatio enim manens in agente, ipsamet est perfectio et bonum agentis, in operationibus autem quae procedunt exterius, perfectio et bonum in exterioribus effectibus invenitur. Unde non solum praemissa sententia convenit opinioni philosophorum ponentium bona animae esse principalissima, per hoc quod felicitatem posuimus circa operationem animae, sed etiam per hoc, quod ipsam operationem posuimus felicitatem. 144. Second [A’, 1, b], at “It was stated accurately,” he proves the same thing in a different way. The soul he says, has two kinds of operations. Some of these pass into external matter, as weaving and building. Operations of this sort are not ends but things done for ends, that is, woven cloth and a completed house. Other operations of the soul, however,remain in the agent himself, as understanding and willing. Operations of this kind are ends. It was correctly stated (119-120), when we said that happiness is an operation and not a product, that acts and operations themselves are ends. Thus happiness is classified as one of the goods belonging to the soul and not an external good. Now in an immanent action the operation itself is a perfection and a good of the agent, but in a transient action the perfection and the good is found in the external effect. Hence not only is the aforesaid view in agreement with the position of the philosophers who hold that goods of the soul are the chief goods—and we said happiness was concerned with the operation of the soul—but also in this, that we place happiness in the operation itself. Deinde cum dicit: consonat autem etc., ostendit quod praemissae sententiae convenit illud etiam in quo omnes de felicitate conveniunt. Dictum est enim supra, quod bene vivere et bene operari idem existimant omnes ei quod est felicem esse. Et huic rationi, id est notificationi felicitatis, convenit praedicta assignatio; quia fere nihil aliud videtur esse bona vita quam bona operatio, qualis videtur esse felicitas. Vivere enim dicuntur illa quae ex se moventur ad operandum. 145. Then (A’, 2], at “This coincides,” he shows that the things generally agreed on about happiness fit in with our view, for it was said above (45, 128) that everyone identifies living a good life and doing well with being happy. What we said is in agreement with this notion or understanding of happiness because a good life appears to be good activity and happiness seems to be of this nature. Those things truly are said to live which of themselves are moved to activity. Deinde cum dicit: videntur autem et quaesita etc., ostendit quod praemissae sententiae conveniunt etiam ea in quibus alii differunt. Et circa hoc tria facit. Primo proponit ea in quibus homines differunt circa felicitatem. Secundo ostendit, quod singula eorum praemissae sententiae conveniunt, ibi, dicentibus quidem igitur etc.; tertio movet ex praemissis quamdam quaestionem, et solvit, ibi, unde et quaeritur, et cetera. Circa primum tria facit. Primo proponit quod intendit; scilicet quod omnia quae sunt a diversis diversimode circa felicitatem quaesita, videntur existere dicto, idest salvari cum praedicta opinione. 146. Then [B, B’], at “Everything that philosophers,” he shows that even the things in which others differ are in agreement with the aforesaid view. On this point he does three things. First [B’, 1] he brings forward the points on which men differ about happiness. Second [B’, 2], at “Our definition of happiness etc.,” he shows that each of these is in agreement with the above view. Finally [Lect. 14; 3], at “Next we investigate etc.” (B. 1099 b 9), he asks and answers a certain question concerning the premises. In regard to the first he does three things. First [B’, 1, a] he states what he wishes to show, that everything that was looked for in happiness by various philosophers in various ways seems “to be found in our notion,” that is, to be preserved in his view. Secundo ibi: his quidem enim etc., ponit diversas opiniones de felicitate. Quarum prima est quod felicitas sit virtus. Et haec subdividitur in tres positiones: quidam enim posuerunt quod universaliter quaelibet virtus sit felicitas, vel specialiter virtus moralis, quae est perfectio appetitus rectificati per rationem. Quibusdam vero videtur quod felicitas sit prudentia, quae est perfectio practicae rationis; aliis autem videtur, quod felicitas sit sapientia, quae est perfectio summa rationis speculativae. 147. Second [B’, 1, b], at “Some have taught” he gives different views on happiness. (1) The first. [b,. i] of these is that happiness consists in virtue. This has three variations. Some taught that (a) any virtue, especially moral virtue which perfects the appetite under the control of the reason constitutes happiness. To others it seemed that (b) happiness consists in prudence which which perfects the practical reason. Still others think that (c) happiness is found in wisdom which is the ultimate perfection of the speculative reason. Secunda opinio est quod omnia ista vel aliquod horum sit felicitas, sed oporteat adiungi voluptatem; et haec subdividitur in duas: nam quidam posuerunt virtutem cum voluptate quasi ex aequo esse felicitatem, alii vero posuerunt, quod felicitas est virtus non sine voluptate, quasi secundario se habente ad felicitatem. 148. The second opinion [b, ii] holds that all or any of these may constitute happiness provide that pleasure be added. This is understood in two senses. Some maintained that (a) virtue and pleasure almost in equal measure constitute happiness. Others (b), while placing happiness in virtue primarily, assign a secondary role to pleasure. Tertia opinio est, quod quidam cum his comprehenderunt ad complementum felicitatis abundantiam exteriorum bonorum, puta divitiarum, honorum et aliorum huiusmodi. 149. (3) A third opinion [b, iii] adds to these elements of happiness a full measure of external goods, like riches and other material goods. Tertio ibi: horum autem haec quidem etc., assignat differentiam opinantium praedicta. Et dicit quod quaedam praedictorum, scilicet quod voluptas et divitiae requirantur ad felicitatem, dixerunt multi, idest vulgares homines, et antiqui viri, qui scilicet minus erant in talibus exercitati; alia vero, scilicet quod in bonis animae esset felicitas, dixerunt pauci et gloriosi viri, idest in scientia famosi. Non est autem probabile, quod aliqui eorum in omnibus erraverint, sed quilibet eorum in uno vel in pluribus recte sensit. 150. Third [B’, 1, c], at “The rank and file,” he indicates the difference in the persons holding the foregoing views. He says that the majority, that is, the common people and some men of antiquity who were not well grounded in such matters, held some of these opinions such as pleasure and riches being necessary for happiness. But others, the minority but distinguished and famous men, held that happiness consisted rather in goods of the soul. It is likely that none of these was entirely wrong but that each of them was right on some points. Deinde cum dicit: dicentibus quidem igitur etc., ostendit quod praedictae opiniones conveniunt cum praemissa assignatione felicitatis. Et primo ostendit hoc de prima opinione, quae posuit virtutem esse felicitatem. Secundo de secunda, quae addidit voluptatem, ibi: est autem et vita ipsorum et cetera. Tertio de tertia, quae addidit exteriora bona, ibi: videtur tamen et eorum et cetera. Circa primum duo facit: primo ostendit (in) quo prima opinio conveniat cum sua sententia; secundo ostendit in quo sua sententia melior sit. Dicit quod illis qui dicunt felicitatem esse virtutem omnem vel aliquam concordat ratio felicitatis superius posita, quod scilicet sit operatio secundum virtutem. Manifestum est enim quod operatio secundum virtutem est aliquid virtutis. 151. Then [B’, 2], at “Our definition of happiness,” he shows that these views are in agreement with what he previously assigned to happiness. First [2, a] he shows that this is true of the first opinion which held that virtue is happiness. Second [Lect. 13; 2, b], at “The life of those etc.” (B. 1099 a 9), he shows that it is true of the second opinion which adds pleasure. Finally [Lect. 13; c, i], at “It seems, however etc.” (B. 1099 a 32), that it is true of the third opinion which adds external goods. In regard to the first assertion he does two things. First [2, a, i] he shows that the first opinion given is in agreement with his. Second [2, a, ii], he shows how his opinion is better. He affirms, therefore, that the definition of happiness given above (130) as an activity according to virtue is acceptable to those who held that all virtue or one virtue constitutes happiness. It is evident that virtuous activity is something belonging to virtue. Deinde cum dicit: differt autem etc., ostendit quod suum dictum melius sit. Et primo per rationem. Secundo per humanam consuetudinem, ibi: quemadmodum autem et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod sicut non parum differt in exterioribus rebus quod optimum ponatur in possessione alicuius rei vel in usu eius, qui est manifeste melior cum sit possessionis finis, ita etiam se habet circa habitum virtutis et operationem, quae est usus eius qui melior est. Potest enim esse habitus in eo qui nullum bonum facit, sicut in dormiente, vel in eo qui qualitercumque est otiosus. Sed de operatione non est hoc possibile. Ex necessitate enim sequitur, quod ille operetur cui inest operatio et quod bene operetur si insit ei operatio secundum virtutem. Unde operatio secundum virtutem est perfectior quam ipsa virtus. 152. Then [a, ii], at “But besides, it makes a great difference” he shows that his own view is better: first [ii, x] from reason; second [ii, y], from a custom among men by the words “At the Olympic games.” He says first that it makes a great deal of difference in external goods whether the most important good is in the possession of a thing or in its use—which is obviously better than possession. It is the same, too, with a habit of virtue and its operation or in its use—which is obviously better than possession. It is the same, too with a habit of virtue and its operation or use which is of greater value than the habit. A habit can exist in a person who is not actually doing any good act, as in one who is asleep or not engaged in any way whatsoever. But this is not possible with an operation. It necessarily follows that that man should operate in whom there is an operation, and that he should produce a good effect if there be in him a virtuous operation. Consequently, a virtuous operation is more perfect than virtue itself. Deinde cum dicit quemadmodum autem etc., manifestat idem per consuetudines humanas. Circa quod sciendum est, quod in Macedonia est quidam mons altissimus qui vocatur Olympus, in quo fiebant quidam ludi ad exercitium pugnae, qui vocabantur Olympiades, in quibus non coronabantur aliqui ex hoc quod essent optimi pugnatores et fortissimi, sed solum illi qui agonizabant, quorum aliqui vincebant. Qui autem non pugnabant non poterant vincere. Ita etiam de numero eorum qui sunt boni et optimi in vita virtuosa illi soli illustres fiunt et felices qui recte operantur. Unde melius dicitur, quod operatio secundum virtutem sit felicitas quam ipsa virtus. 153. Then [ii, y] when he says “At the Olympic games,” he proves the same thing by a custom among men. Concerning this we must know that in Macedonia there is a very high mountain called Olympus where certain competitive sports, called Olympic games were held. In these, not the strongest and best looking athletes but only the winning contestants received the crown., for those who did not compete were ineligible for the prize. So also, of those who are good and best in virtuous living, only those are illustrious and happy who actually perform good deeds. Hence it is better to say that happiness is a virtuous operation than virtue itself.
Some Place Happiness in Virtue with Pleasure;
Others Say External Goods Are Necessary for Happiness
b. (He shows that) the second opinion, which holds that happiness consists in virtue together with pleasure (is in agreement with the definition given above). i. He shows how this position harmonizes with his own opinion. x. FIRST HE STATES HIS PROPOSITION. — 154 ἔστι δὲ καὶ ὁ βίος αὐτῶν καθ' αὑτὸν ἡδύς. The life of those who act in accord with virtue is itself pleasurable. y. HE GIVES EVIDENCE FOR HIS STATEMENT. aa. By showing first that virtuous action should be pleasurable. — 155 τὸ μὲν γὰρ ἥδεσθαι τῶν ψυχικῶν, ἑκάστῳ δ' ἐστὶν ἡδὺ πρὸς ὃ λέγεται φιλοτοιοῦτος, οἷον ἵππος μὲν τῷ φιλίππῳ, θέαμα δὲ τῷ φιλοθεώρῳ· τὸν αὐτὸν δὲ τρόπον καὶ τὰ δίκαια τῷ φιλοδικαίῳ καὶ ὅλως τὰ κατ' ἀρετὴν τῷ φιλαρέτῳ. Now pleasure is an activity proper to a living being. And everyone finds pleasure in what he is fond of, as a lover of horses finds pleasure in horses and a lover of shows in shows. In the same way a man who loves justice finds pleasure in just deeds; and in general one who loves virtue, finds pleasure in virtuous activity. bb. This pleasure is preferable to others. — 156 τοῖς μὲν οὖν πολλοῖς τὰ ἡδέα μάχεται διὰ τὸ μὴ φύσει τοιαῦτ' εἶναι, τοῖς δὲ φιλοκάλοις ἐστὶν ἡδέα τὰ φύσει ἡδέα· τοιαῦται δ' αἱ κατ' ἀρετὴν πράξεις, ὥστε καὶ τούτοις εἰσὶν ἡδεῖαι καὶ καθ' αὑτάς. Many experience pleasure in things that are in opposition to one another because the pleasure is not in accord with human nature. Men, however, who love the good find pleasure in the things which are inherently pleasurable. Of this kind are virtuous operations that therefore are pleasurable not only to virtuous men but also by their very natures. ii. He shows how it differs (from his own opinion). x. HE STATES A PROPOSITION. — 157 οὐδὲν δὴ προσδεῖται τῆς ἡδονῆς ὁ βίος αὐτῶν ὥσπερ περιάπτου τινός, ἀλλ' ἔχει τὴν ἡδονὴν ἐν ἑαυτῷ. This type of life then has no need of pleasure as an accessory but is pleasurable in itself. y. HE GIVES EVIDENCE FOR HIS STATEMENT. aa. Virtuous life is pleasurable in itself. — 158 εἰ δ' οὕτω, καθ' αὑτὰς ἂν εἶεν αἱ κατ' ἀρετὴν πράξεις ἡδεῖαι. It should be added that every virtuous person rejoices in virtuous acts, for no one win call a man just who does not enjoy doing just deeds; no one will call a man generous who does not enjoy giving generously. Similarly we speak of men in other virtuous activities. From this it is clear that actions in accord with virtue are pleasurable in themselves. bb. It has nobility and goodness in a high degree. — 459-160 ἀλλὰ μὴν καὶ ἀγαθαί γε καὶ καλαί, καὶ μάλιστα τούτων ἕκαστον, εἴπερ καλῶς κρίνει περὶ αὐτῶν ὁ σπουδαῖος· κρίνει δ' ὡς εἴπομεν. ἄριστον ἄρα καὶ κάλλιστον καὶ ἥδιστον ἡ εὐδαιμονία, Granting this, such actions are noble and good. In fact they have each of these qualities in the highest degree, if a good man judge truly in this matter as we have said he does. Happiness is the best, therefore, the noblest and the most pleasurable of all things. cc. He excludes a false opinion. — 161 καὶ οὐ διώρισται ταῦτα κατὰ τὸ Δηλιακὸν ἐπίγραμμα·
- κάλλιστον τὸ δικαιότατον, λῷστον δ' ὑγιαίνειν·
- ἥδιστον δὲ πέφυχ' οὗ τις ἐρᾷ τὸ τυχεῖν.
ἅπαντα γὰρ ὑπάρχει ταῦτα ταῖς ἀρίσταις ἐνεργείαις· ταύτας δέ, ἢ μίαν τούτων τὴν ἀρίστην, φαμὲν εἶναι τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν.
These qualities do not belong to different things as the inscription at Delos has it: “The best is the just thing, the most desired is health, and the sweetest is the heart’s desire.” But they are all found together in the most virtuous actions. In all these or in the best of these we say happiness consists. c. He comes to the third opinion... that external goods are necessary to happiness. i. This opinion may conform to the truth. — 162 φαίνεται δ' ὅμως καὶ τῶν ἐκτὸς ἀγαθῶν προσδεομένη, καθάπερ εἴπομεν· It seems, however, that happiness stands in need of external goods, as we have said, ii. Evidence for his statement. — 163 ἀδύνατον γὰρ ἢ οὐ ῥᾴδιον τὰ καλὰ πράττειν ἀχορήγητον ὄντα. πολλὰ μὲν γὰρ πράττεται, καθάπερ δι' ὀργάνων, διὰ φίλων καὶ πλούτου καὶ πολιτικῆς δυνάμεως· ἐνίων δὲ τητώμενοι ῥυπαίνουσι τὸ μακάριον, οἷον εὐγενείας εὐτεκνίας κάλλους· οὐ πάνυ γὰρ εὐδαιμονικὸς ὁ τὴν ἰδέαν παναίσχης ἢ δυσγενὴς ἢ μονώτης καὶ ἄτεκνος, ἔτι δ' ἴσως ἧττον, εἴ τῳ πάγκακοι παῖδες εἶεν ἢ φίλοι, ἢ ἀγαθοὶ ὄντες τεθνᾶσιν. καθάπερ οὖν εἴπομεν, ἔοικε προσδεῖσθαι καὶ τῆς τοιαύτης εὐημερίας· for it is impossible, or at least difficult, for an indigent man to perform certain virtuous actions. Many good deeds become feasible, as we have pointed out, by the aid of friends and money and political influence. Then too the lack of other blessings, like noble birth, good children, and physical beauty spoil a man’s happiness. One who is extremely ugly, lowborn, or alone in the world and without children cannot be entirely happy. Much less is he happy who is cursed with wayward children or evil associates or who has lost friends by death. In our opinion then it seems that happiness has need of external prosperity to a degree. iii. He draws a conclusion. — 164 ὅθεν εἰς ταὐτὸ τάττουσιν ἔνιοι τὴν εὐτυχίαν τῇ εὐδαιμονίᾳ, ἕτεροι δὲ τὴν ἀρετήν. For this reason some have identified good fortune with happiness. Others, however, prefer to place happiness in virtue.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Est autem et vita ipsorum et cetera. Postquam philosophus ostendit de prima opinione quae posuit felicitatem esse virtutem, in quo conveniat cum definitione supra posita, et in quo ab ea deficiat, ostendit nunc idem circa secundam opinionem, quae posuit felicitatem esse virtutem cum delectatione. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo ostendit in quo conveniat haec positio cum sua sententia. Secundo ostendit in quo deficiat, ibi, nihil autem indiget voluptate et cetera. Circa primum duo facit: primo proponit quod intendit. Secundo manifestat propositum, ibi, delectari quidem enim et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod vita eorum, qui operantur secundum virtutem, est secundum se delectabilis. Et ita felicitati, quam ponimus in operatione virtutis, non deest delectatio, quam secundum istos felicitas requirit. 154. After the Philosopher has shown how the first opinion, which places happiness in virtue, is in agreement with the definition given above, and how it differs from it, he now does the same [b] regarding the second opinion, which holds that happiness in virtue together with pleasure. On this point he does two things. First [b, i], he shows how this position harmonizes with his own opinion. Second [b, ii], at “This type of life etc.,” he shows how it differs. On the initial point he does two things. First [i, x] he states his proposition; and then [i, y] gives evidence for his statement at “Now pleasure is etc.” He says, therefore, first that the life of those who act virtuously is itself pleasurable. Happiness then which we place in an operation of virtue does not lack pleasure which, in their judgment, happiness requires. Deinde cum dicit: delectari quidem enim etc., probat propositum. Et primo ostendit, quod in operatione virtutis sit delectatio. Secundo ostendit, quod haec delectatio est potior aliis, ibi, multis quidem igitur et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod delectari est proprium animalium. Quamvis enim appetitum aliquem, scilicet naturalem, attribuamus rebus inanimatis, delectationem tamen non attribuimus nisi cognitionem habentibus; ex quo datur intelligi, quod delectatio proprie pertinet ad operationes animae, in quibus ponitur felicitas. In huiusmodi autem operationibus unicuique est delectabile id cuius dicitur esse amicus; sicut enim amans desiderat rem amatam si fuerit absens, ita delectatur in ea si fuerit praesens. Sicut equus est delectabilis amanti equum, et spectaculum amanti spectaculum. Manifestum est autem quod unusquisque virtuosus amat operationem propriae virtutis, utpote sibi convenientem. Unde iusto, inquantum amat iustitiam, delectabile est operari iusta. Et universaliter operationes, quae secundum virtutem sunt delectabiles virtuosis virtutem amantibus. 155. Then [i, y], at “Now pleasure is,” he proves his statement by showing first that virtuous actions should be pleasurable [i, y, aa] and second [i, y, bb], at “Many experience etc.,” that this pleasure is preferable to others. He says first that pleasure is an activity proper to animals. Although we may attribute a natural appetite to inanimate things, we attribute pleasure only to a being having perception. From this we see that pleasure properly belongs to the activities of a soul, one of which is happiness. Now in activities of this kind, everyone finds pleasure in what he is fond of. As a lover desires the thing which is absent, so he takes pleasure in it when it is present. In this way a lover of horses finds pleasure in a horses; and a lover of shows, in a show. Hence it is evident that every virtuous person loves the activities of his own virtue as something agreeable to him. To the extent that the just man loves justice he will take pleasure in doing just deeds. It is universally true that virtuous operations are pleasurable to virtuous persons who love virtue. Deinde cum dicit: multis quidem igitur etc., ostendit hanc delectationem esse potiorem aliis. Et proponit quod ea quae sunt delectabilia multitudini vulgarium hominum, sunt contraria ad invicem, quia, sicut prodigus delectatur in effusione, ita illiberalis in superflua retentione; et hoc ideo est quia delectationes tales non sunt secundum naturam hominis, quae est omnibus communis: non enim sunt secundum rationem, sed secundum corruptionem appetitus a ratione deficientis. Sed illis, qui amant bonum virtutis sunt delectabilia ea quae sunt secundum naturam delectabilia, quia scilicet conveniunt homini secundum rationem, quae est perfectiva naturae ipsius, et propter hoc omnes virtuosi in eisdem delectantur. Tales autem sunt operationes secundum virtutem, scilicet naturaliter delectabiles homini, eo quod sunt secundum rationem rectam. Et ideo non solum sunt delectabiles quoad ipsos homines, sed etiam sunt delectabiles secundum seipsas. Operationes autem vitiosae sunt delectabiles quoad ipsos homines, quibus sunt conformes, secundum habitus corruptos quos habent. Cum igitur id quod est secundum se et naturaliter tale sit potius, consequens est delectationem quae est secundum operationem virtutis esse delectabiliorem. 156. Then [i, y, bb], at “Many experience,” he shows that this pleasure is preferable to others. He explains that the things pleasurable to the majority of men are contrary to one another. Prodigality, for instance is a source of pleasure to the spendthrift, while hoarding delights the miser. This happens because these pleasures are not in accord with human nature common to all men, in other words with reason, but rather with the corruption of an appetite departing from reason. But to men loving the good of virtue, these things are pleasurable that are inherently so, that is, that are agreeable to man according to reason, the perfection of his nature. Because of this, all virtuous men take pleasure in the same things—virtuous operations—which are naturally pleasurable to men according to right reason. These are pleasurable not only to men but also in their very nature. But evil actions give pleasure to men who get used to them by corrupt habits. Since then what is of itself and by nature such is preferable, pleasure arising from virtuous operation will be more delightful than other pleasures. Deinde cum dicit: nihil autem indiget etc., ostendit in quo praedicta positio deficiat a veritate. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo proponit quod intendit. Secundo manifestat propositum, ibi, cum dictis enim et cetera. Est ergo considerandum circa primum, quod dicentes virtutem cum voluptate esse felicitatem, videbantur innuere quod virtus ad complementum felicitatis indigeat extrinseca voluptate. Sed ipse hoc excludit; dicens, quod vita eorum qui operantur secundum virtutem, non indiget voluptate, quasi aliquo extrinseco adiuncto; sed habet voluptatem in seipsa. 157. Then [b, ii], at “This type of life,” he shows in what respect this opinion may not be true. In regard to this he does two things. First [ii, x] he states a proposition. Second [ii, y], at “It should be added etc.,” he gives evidence for his statement. We must, therefore, consider in regard to the first, that those who hold that happiness consists in virtue together with pleasure seemed to intimate that virtue may have need of some extrinsic pleasure for the perfection of happiness. Aristotle disagrees her saying that the life of those who act in accord with virtue does not need pleasure as an extrinsic addition. That life is pleasurable in itself. Deinde cum dicit: cum dictis enim etc., manifestat quod dixerat. Et circa hoc tria facit. Primo probat quod vita virtuosa habet delectationem in seipsa. Secundo ostendit quod insuper habet pulchritudinem et bonitatem secundum excellentiam, ibi, quinimmo et pulchrae et cetera. Tertio excludit circa hoc quandam sententiam falsam, ibi: et non divisa sunt haec et cetera. Dicit ergo primo quod cum dictis rationibus quibus ostensum est operationes secundum virtutem esse naturaliter delectabiles, etiam addendum est haec quod delectatio est de necessitate virtutis et pertinet ad rationem ipsius; nullus enim est bonus vel virtuosus qui non gaudet in bonis operationibus. Et hoc manifestat per inductionem, quia nullus diceret illum esse iustum qui non gaudet de hoc quod operatur iusta. Et idem est in liberalitate, et in qualibet alia virtute. Cuius ratio est quia unicuique virtuoso operatio propriae virtutis est ei conveniens secundum proprium habitum, et per consequens fit ei delectabilis. Ex quo patet quod operationes secundum virtutem sunt secundum seipsas delectabiles. Et sic non requirunt delectationem extrinsecam. 158. Then [ii, y], at “It should be added,” he gives evidence for what he has affirmed. In regard to this he does three things. First [ii, y, aa] he proves that virtuous life is pleasurable in itself. Second [ii, y, bb], at “Granting this, such actions etc.,” he proves that it has nobility and goodness in a high degree. Third [ii, y, cc], at “These qualities do not etc.,” he excludes a false opinion. He says first that to the reasons proving (154-156) that virtuous actions are naturally pleasurable, we must add that pleasure necessarily belongs to virtue and pertains to its very nature. There is no virtuous person who does not enjoy the good deeds he does. He proves this inductively by saying that no one will call that man just who does not rejoice in doing just deeds. A similar observation may be made of the generous man and of a man practicing any virtue. The reason is that the act of a virtuous man is agreeable to him according to a proper habit, and as a consequence he derives pleasure form it. From this it is clear that virtuous actions are pleasurable in themselves and do not require pleasure external to them. Deinde cum dicit: quin immo etc., ostendit quod operationes secundum virtutem non solum sunt delectabiles, sed etiam pulchrae et bonae. Delectabiles quidem sunt in ordine ad operantem cui conveniunt secundum proprium habitum; pulcrae autem sunt secundum ordinem debitum circumstantiarum quasi quarumdam partium. Nam in debita commensuratione partium, pulchritudo consistit. Bonae autem sunt secundum ordinem ad finem. 159. Then [ii, y, bb], at “Granting this,” he shows that actions in accord with virtue are not only pleasurable but also noble and good. Actions indeed are pleasurable to an agent when they are agreeable to him by reason of a proper habit. They are noble or beautiful because of a right order of circumstances as of parts, for beauty consists in a fitting arrangement of parts. They are good because of ordered to the end. Addit autem, quod unumquodque horum trium maxime convenit eis. Et hoc probat per iudicium studiosi. Qui, cum habeat rectum sensum circa operabilia humana, verum habet iudicium circa ea; sicut ille qui habet gustum sanum verum habet iudicium circa sapores. Sed studiosus iudicat operationes secundum virtutem esse maxime delectabiles et pulchras et bonas, utpote pro quibus omnia delectabilia et pulchra et bona praetermittit. Cum igitur in operationibus virtutum consistat felicitas, consequens est quod felicitas sit optimum et pulcherrimum et delectabilissimum. 166. He adds that each of these three qualities belongs to virtuous actions in a high degree. He proves this by the judgment of a good man. Such a man, since he has the right feeling for human works, judges them correctly. In another field the man with a healthy sense of taste will make correct judgment on flavors. But a good man judges that actions in accord with virtue are eminently pleasurable, noble and good, so much so that he puts them before any other pleasures, beauties or goods. Since therefore, happiness consists in virtuous actions, it follows that happiness is the best, most beautiful and most pleasant. Deinde cum dicit: et non divisa sunt haec etc., excludit a proposito quamdam opinionem. Ad cuius evidentiam considerandum est, quod apud Delos vel Deluos in templo Apollinis erat superscriptum quod optimum est id quod est iustissimum: desideratissimum autem est sanum esse, delectabilissimum autem est id quo quis optat frui. Sed philosophus dicit, quod ista tria non conveniunt diversis, sed omnia conveniunt operationibus quae sunt secundum virtutem, in quibus vel in quarum optima consistit felicitas. Unde unum et idem est, scilicet felicitas, quod est optimum et desideratissimum sive pulcerrimum et delectabilissimum. 161. Then [ii, y, cc], at “These qualities do not belong,” he excludes from his doctrine a certain opinion. To understand this we must recall the inscription in Apollo’s temple at Delos: “The best is what is most just. The most desired is to be healthy. The most delightful is that which one desires to enjoy.” But the Philosopher says that these three qualities do not belong to different things but all three belong to virtuous actions in all of which or in the best of which happiness consists. Therefore there is one—happiness—which is the best, most beautiful, most desired or most delightful. Deinde cum dicit: videtur tamen et eorum etc., accedit ad tertiam opinionem, quae ponebat quod ad felicitatem requiruntur exteriora bona. Et circa hoc tria facit. Primo proponit in quo haec opinio veritati conveniat. Secundo manifestat propositum, ibi, impossibile enim et cetera. Tertio inducit conclusionem ex dictis, ibi, unde in idem et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod tertia opinio supra posita quantum ad hoc videtur vera esse, quod felicitas indiget exterioribus bonis, ut supra dictum est. 162. Then [c], at “It seems, however,” he comes to the third opinion which held that external goods are necessary to happiness. In regard to this he does three things. First [c, i] he brings out in what way this opinion may conform to the truth. Second [c, ii], at “for it is impossible etc.,” he gives evidence for his statement. Third [c, iii] at “For this reason some etc.,” he draws a conclusion from the premises. He says first that the third opinion given above (149) seems true in this that happiness has need of external good, as was indicated previously (111). Deinde cum dicit impossibile enim etc., manifestat propositum. Circa quod considerandum est, quod exteriorum bonorum quibusdam indiget felicitas, sicut instrumentis quibus indigemus ad exercendum opera virtutis, in quibus consistit felicitas. Et quantum ad hoc dicit quod est impossibile vel difficile quod homo qui non habet divitias ex quibus possit donare et expendere, operetur quaedam virtuosa opera; multa enim operum virtuosorum facimus per amicos et per divitias et per civilem potentiam, puta per hoc quod aliquis est rex vel proconsul. Quaedam vero exteriorum bonorum sunt quae faciunt ad quandam pulchritudinem felicitatis, inquantum scilicet reddunt hominem placitum in oculis aliorum, quod pertinet ad rationem pulchritudinis. Et quantum ad hoc subdit, quod denudari quibusdam exteriorum bonorum, coinquinat beatitudinem, inquantum scilicet reddit hominem aliqualiter contemptibilem in oculis aliorum, sicut patet de eo qui caret nobilitate, vel bona prole, aut etiam pulchritudine corporali. Non enim est omnino felix, qui est turpis specie; quia ex hoc redditur in oculis aliorum contemptibilis et despectus. Et eadem ratio est de eo qui est ignobilis, vel qui caret bona prole et aliis secundum carnem coniunctis quasi solitarius existens, quia propter omnia ista homo contemnitur. Et multo magis minus est felix si habeat pessimos filios vel amicos, quia per eos impeditur ab operatione virtutis. Et similiter etiam repugnat felicitati si aliquando habuerit bonos et mortui sunt, quia ex hoc aliqua causa tristitiae remanet in corde eius. Sic igitur videtur quod felicitas indigeat exteriori prosperitate. 163. Then [c, ii], at “for it is impossible,” he gives evidence for his statement. In this matter we must consider that happiness needs certain external goods as instruments to perform the good deeds in which happiness consists. Touching on this he says that it is impossible or difficult for a man, who does not possess the means for gifts and expenditures, to practice certain virtuous acts. In many works of virtue we make use of friends, wealth, and political power, as in the case of someone who is a ruler or an official. There are some external goods which lend a beauty to happiness insofar as they make a man pleasing in the eyes of others giving him a kind of splendor. At this point he adds that a lack of certain externals clouds a man’s happiness making him as it were contemptible in the eyes of others, as is evident in a man who lacks noble birth, good children or even physical beauty. A man is not entirely happy when he is ugly since this makes him contemptible and despised. The same is true of one who is lowborn or who does not have good children. Much less is he happy who has wicked sons or friends, for this limits his virtuous activity. Likewise, it is incompatible with happiness to have lost good friends by death, for such a loss means grief of heart. So it seems then that happiness has some need of goods of fortune. Deinde cum dicit: unde in idem etc., infert conclusionem ex dictis. Quia enim felicitas principaliter consistit in operatione virtutis, indiget tamen aliqualiter exterioribus bonis, quae dicuntur bona fortunae, quia multoties fortuito adveniunt homini vel recedunt, inde est quod quidam idem posuerunt esse bonam fortunam et felicitatem. Quidam vero dixerunt idem esse felicitatem et virtutem, ut supra dictum est. 164. Then [c, iii], at “For this reason,” he comes to the conclusion that although happiness consists in virtuous actions, nevertheless it needs external goods to some extent. Such externals are called goods of fortune because they often fall into a man’s lap, or, in bad luck, desert him. For this reason some have held that good fortune and happiness are identical. But others have identified happiness with virtue, as was said above (66-68).
The Cause of Happiness
Chapter 9 3. HE... INVESTIGATES THE CAUSE OF HAPPINESS. a. He states the question. — 165-166 ὅθεν καὶ ἀπορεῖται πότερόν ἐστι μαθητὸν ἢ ἐθιστὸν ἢ καὶ ἄλλως πως ἀσκητόν, ἢ κατά τινα θείαν μοῖραν ἢ καὶ διὰ τύχην παραγίνεται. Next we investigate whether happiness is something which can be learned or acquired by habit or attained in some way by training. Does it come to us by divine providence or by chance? b. He explains it. i. First... in parts. x. IT IS EMINENTLY REASONABLE FOR HAPPINESS TO HAVE A DIVINE CAUSE. — 167-168 εἰ μὲν οὖν καὶ ἄλλο τί ἐστι θεῶν δώρημα ἀνθρώποις, εὔλογον καὶ τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν θεόσδοτον εἶναι, καὶ μάλιστα τῶν ἀνθρωπίνων ὅσῳ βέλτιστον. ἀλλὰ τοῦτο μὲν ἴσως ἄλλης ἂν εἴη σκέψεως οἰκειότερον, If anything is the gift of the gods to men it is reasonable to think that happiness, the best by far of all human goods, is the gift of God. But this subject is perhaps more properly treated in another science. y. IT IS ACCEPTABLE FOR IT TO HAVE A HUMAN CAUSE. aa. (This) does not do away with... (it being) most excellent and divine. — 169 φαίνεται δὲ κἂν εἰ μὴ θεόπεμπτός ἐστιν ἀλλὰ δι' ἀρετὴν καί τινα μάθησιν ἢ ἄσκησιν παραγίνεται, τῶν θειοτάτων εἶναι· τὸ γὰρ τῆς ἀρετῆς ἆθλον καὶ τέλος ἄριστον εἶναι φαίνεται καὶ θεῖόν τι καὶ μακάριον. On the other hand, if happiness is not sent directly by God, but comes to men by virtue and study and exercise, it would still be judged most divine. As the re ward and end of virtue it is apparently most excellent and divine and blessed. bb. He proves the same point in this way. — 170 εἴη δ' ἂν καὶ πολύκοινον· δυνατὸν γὰρ ὑπάρξαι πᾶσι τοῖς μὴ πεπηρωμένοις πρὸς ἀρετὴν διά τινος μαθήσεως καὶ ἐπιμελείας. It will also be common to human nature because, supposing it be the result of discipline and study, happiness can be had by all who are not impeded from virtuous action. z. HE SHOWS IT IS NOT FITTING FOR (HAPPINESS) TO BE AN EFFECT OF CHANCE. aa. First. — 171 εἰ δ' ἐστὶν οὕτω βέλτιον ἢ τὸ διὰ τύχην εὐδαιμονεῖν, εὔλογον ἔχειν οὕτως, εἴπερ τὰ κατὰ φύσιν, ὡς οἷόν τε κάλλιστα ἔχειν, οὕτω πέφυκεν, ὁμοίως δὲ καὶ τὰ κατὰ τέχνην καὶ πᾶσαν αἰτίαν, καὶ μάλιστα τὰ κατὰ τὴν ἀρίστην. If such is the case, it is better that happiness be attained in this way than by chance, and it is reasonable to have it so. The things that are in accord with nature are as good as they can be by their very make-up. The same too can be said of what is produced by art or by any cause especially the highest. bb. He offers a second reason. — 172 τὸ δὲ μέγιστον καὶ κάλλιστον ἐπιτρέψαι τύχῃ λίαν πλημμελὲς ἂν εἴη. Besides, to abandon the greatest and the best good to the vagaries of chance is most pernicious. ii. Then (he explains) by offering a common reason. — 173 συμφανὲς δ' ἐστὶ καὶ ἐκ τοῦ λόγου τὸ ζητούμενον· εἴρηται γὰρ ψυχῆς ἐνέργεια κατ' ἀρετὴν ποιά τις. τῶν δὲ λοιπῶν ἀγαθῶν τὰ μὲν ὑπάρχειν ἀναγκαῖον, τὰ δὲ συνεργὰ καὶ χρήσιμα πέφυκεν ὀργανικῶς. What we seek is evident from the definition of happiness as a certain kind of activity of the soul in accord with virtue. Of the remaining goods some are necessary to enrich happiness and others work instrumentally for its attainment. c. He shows that the previously discussed definition... is in agreement... with his opinion. i. He shows what concurs with his earlier remarks. — 174 ὁμολογούμενα δὲ ταῦτ' ἂν εἴη καὶ τοῖς ἐν ἀρχῇ· τὸ γὰρ τῆς πολιτικῆς τέλος ἄριστον ἐτίθεμεν, αὕτη δὲ πλείστην ἐπιμέλειαν ποιεῖται τοῦ ποιούς τινας καὶ ἀγαθοὺς τοὺς πολίτας ποιῆσαι καὶ πρακτικοὺς τῶν καλῶν. This—that happiness is a virtuous activity—is apparent in the light of what was laid down in the beginning. There we stated that the end of political science is the best of human goods, for the principal aim of this science is the formation of men in such a way that they will become upright citizens and doers of good works. ii. He concludes what is the correct view in accord with this opinion. x. NO DUMB ANIMAL IS CALLED HAPPY. — 175 εἰκότως οὖν οὔτε βοῦν οὔτε ἵππον οὔτε ἄλλο τῶν ζώων οὐδὲν εὔδαιμον λέγομεν· οὐδὲν γὰρ αὐτῶν οἷόν τε κοινωνῆσαι τοιαύτης ἐνεργείας. That is why we do not say properly that a cow or a horse or any other animal is happy, for it is not possible for any of them to participate in moral activity. y. HE ALSO EXCLUDES CHILDREN FROM HAPPINESS. — 176 διὰ ταύτην δὲ τὴν αἰτίαν οὐδὲ παῖς εὐδαίμων ἐστίν· οὔπω γὰρ πρακτικὸς τῶν τοιούτων διὰ τὴν ἡλικίαν· οἱ δὲ λεγόμενοι διὰ τὴν ἐλπίδα μακαρίζονται. δεῖ γάρ, ὥσπερ εἴπομεν, καὶ ἀρετῆς τελείας καὶ βίου τελείου. For the same reason children are not really happy, in that they have not yet attained sufficient age for the performance of virtuous deeds. Children are called happy because they give promise of happiness, while real happiness needs perfect virtue and a complete life, as we have already pointed out.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Unde et quaeritur et cetera. Postquam philosophus ostendit quomodo diversae opiniones concordant definitioni felicitatis suprapositae, hic inquirit ex consequenti de causa felicitatis. Et primo movet quaestionem. Secundo determinat eam, ibi, siquidem igitur et cetera. Circa primum considerandum est quod necesse est felicitatem procedere, vel a causa per se et determinata, vel a causa per accidens et indeterminata, quae est fortuna. Si autem a causa determinata et per se, aut hoc erit a causa humana, aut a causa divina. A causa autem humana fit aliquid in nobis tripliciter. Uno modo addiscendo, sicut scientia. Alio modo assuescendo, sicut virtus moralis. Tertio modo exercitando, sicut militaris industria, et alia huiusmodi. 165. After the Philosopher has shown how different opinions are in agreement with the definition of happiness presented above, here  he naturally investigates the cause of happiness. First [3, a] he states the question, and second [3, b], at “If anything etc.,” he explains it. In regard to the first we must consider that happiness must proceed from either a per se and determined cause, or an incidental and indetermined cause, that is, chance. If from a per se and determined cause, this will be either human or divine. In the case of a human cause, the effect is produced in us in three ways: first by learning, as a science; second by practice, as a moral virtue; third by exercise, as a military drill and other things of this kind. Proponit igitur quaestionem trium membrorum: quorum primum pertinet ad causam humanam. Et hoc est quod quaerit: utrum felicitas sit aliquid discibile, sicut scientia, vel assuescibile, sicut virtus moralis, vel aliqualiter exercitabile, sicut industria artificialium operum. Secundum membrum pertinet ad causam divinam; et hoc est quod quaerit: utrum felicitas sit in nobis secundum quandam divinam particulam, id est secundum qualemcumque participationem alicuius divinorum super hominem existentium. Tertium autem membrum pertinet ad causam per accidens et indeterminatam; et hoc est quod quaerit: utrum felicitas adveniat homini propter fortunam. 166. Accordingly he proposes the question in three parts. The first concerns a human cause. He asks whether happiness is something that can be learned as a science, or that can be acquired by habit as a moral virtue, or that can to some extent be had by training, like setting-up exercises. The second part concerns a divine cause. He asks whether happiness is something divine in us and a sharing in some way of godlike qualities which are above men. The third part concerns an incidental and indetermined cause. In other words he asks whether happiness occurs to man by chance. Deinde cum dicit: si quidem igitur etc., determinat praedictam quaestionem. Et primo quasi per modum divisivum considerando singula membra quaestionis. Secundo per rationem communem sumptam ex definitione felicitatis, ibi, manifestum est autem ex ratione et cetera. Circa primum tria facit. Primo ostendit quod maxime rationabile est quod felicitas sit ex causa divina. Secundo ostendit quod tolerabile est quod sit ex causa humana, ibi, videtur autem et cetera. Tertio ostendit quod inconveniens est quod sit ex causa fortuita, ibi, si autem est ita et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod si aliquid aliud ex dono deorum, id est substantiarum separatarum quas antiqui deos vocabant, datur hominibus, rationabile est quod felicitas sit donum Dei supremi, quia ipsa est optimum inter bona humana. Manifestum est enim quod ad altiorem finem aliquid perducitur ab altiori virtute; sicut ad altiorem finem perducit ars militaris quam frenefactiva. Unde rationabile est quod ultimus finis, scilicet felicitas, proveniat homini ex suprema omnium virtute, scilicet Dei summi. 167. Then [3, b], at “If anything,” he explains the question first [b, i] as it were in parts by considering the individual sections of the question; and then [b, ii], by offering a common reason taken from the definition of happiness at “Whit we seek is evident etc.” In regard to the first he does three things. First [i, x] he shows it is eminently reasonable for happiness to have a divine cause. Second [i, y], at “On the other hand etc.,” he shows that it is acceptable for it to have a human cause. Third [i, z], at “If such is the case,” he shows it is not fitting for it to be an effect of chance. He say first that if the gods (i.e. beings called gods by the ancients) make gifts to men, it is reasonable that happiness be the gift of the supreme God because it is the most excellent of human goods. It is obvious that a thing is led to a higher end by a higher virtue or power, for instance, man is led to a higher end by military art than by bridle-making. Hence it is reasonable that the ultimate end, happiness, should come to man from the highest power of all, the supreme God. Quod autem a substantiis separatis aliquid detur hominibus, evidens fit ex ipsa convenientia hominum ad substantias separatas secundum intellectualem virtutem. Sicut enim corpora inferiora recipiunt suas perfectiones a corporibus superioribus, ita intellectus inferiores ab intellectibus superioribus. Circa hoc autem non diutius immoratur, sed dicit hoc esse magis proprium alterius perscrutationis, scilicet metaphysicae. 168. That separated substances may bestow something on men becomes evident from the fact that men and separated substances are alike in the power of intelligence. As the lower bodies are brought to perfection by the higher bodies so the lower intellectual beings by the superior intellectual beings. But there is no reason to delay any longer on this matter for it because it belongs rather to another science, metaphysics. Deinde cum dicit: videtur autem etc., ostendit tolerabiliter dici quod felicitas sit ex causa humana, quia, etiam si sit a Deo principaliter, tamen adhuc homo aliquid cooperatur. Hoc autem ostendit dupliciter. Primo quidem per hoc quod si est a causa humana, non removetur id quod est proprium felicitati, scilicet quod sit aliquid optimum et divinum. Et dicit quod si felicitas non sit aliquod donum missum immediate a Deo, sed adveniat homini propter virtutem, sicut aliquid assuescibile, vel propter aliquam disciplinam, sicut aliquid discibile, vel propter aliquam exercitationem sicut aliquid exercitabile, nihilominus videtur felicitas esse aliquid divinissimum, quia cum sit praemium et finis virtutis, sequitur quod sit optimum et divinum aliquid et beatum. Non enim dicitur aliquid divinum propter hoc solum quia est a Deo, sed etiam quia nos Deo assimulat propter excellentiam bonitatis. 169. Then [i, y], at “On the other hand,” he shows it is acceptable to say that happiness has a human cause. Although God is the principal cause, man does contribute something to happiness. Aristotle shows this in two ways. First [y, aa], the fact that happiness has a human cause does not do away with its chief characteristic, that it is most excellent and divine. He says that if happiness is not a gift sent directly by God but comes to men by virtue as a thing acquired by habit, or by study as a thing to be learned, or by exercise as a thing to be had by training, nevertheless it seems to be something especially divine. The reason is that since happiness is the reward and end of virtue, it follows that it is something most excellent and divine and blessed. A thing is not called divine only because it comes from God but also because it makes us like God in goodness. Secundo ibi: erit autem etc., ostendit idem per hoc quod haec positio conservat felicitati id quod pertinet ad finem alicuius naturae, ut scilicet sit commune aliquid his quae habent naturam illam. Non enim natura deficit ab eo quod intendit, nisi in paucioribus. Et ita si felicitas est finis humanae naturae, oportet quod possit esse communis omnibus vel pluribus habentibus humanam naturam; et istud salvatur si sit ex causa humana, quia sic per quandam disciplinam et studium, poterit provenire omnibus non habentibus aliquod impedimentum ad operandum opera virtutis, vel per defectum naturae, sicut qui sunt naturaliter stulti, vel per malam consuetudinem quae imitatur naturam. Ex quo patet, quod felicitas de qua philosophus loquitur non consistit in illa continuatione ad intelligentiam separatam, per quam homo intelligat omnia, ut quidam posuerunt. Hoc enim non provenit multis, immo nulli in hac vita. 170. Second [y, bb], at “It will also,” he proves the same point in this way. Applicable to happiness is the idea that what belongs to the purpose of a nature should be something common to the things having that nature, for nature does not fail in what it intends except in the minority of cases. So if happiness is the end of human nature, it must be common to all or many having human nature. This principle remains intact if the cause be a human one. If happiness be had through discipline and study it could come to everyone who is not impeded in the performance of virtuous works either by defect of nature as those who are naturally stupid, or by an evil habit which imitates nature. From this it is clear that the happiness spoken of by the Philosopher, does not consist in that contact with separated intelligence by which man can understand all things, as certain people have maintained. Such experience does not happen to very many, in fact, to no one in this life. Deinde cum dicit: si autem est ita etc., ostendit intolerabile esse quod felicitatis causa sit fortuna. Et hoc duabus rationibus. Quarum prima talis est. Ea quae sunt secundum naturam optime se habent, sicut apta nata sunt. Et idem est etiam de omnibus quae fiunt secundum artem vel secundum quamcumque causam; et maxime secundum optimam causam a qua videtur felicitas dependere, cum sit quiddam optimum; huius autem ratio est quia et ars et omnis causa agens agit propter bonum. Unde consequens est quod unumquodque agens optime disponat id quod agit quanto melius potest et praecipue hoc videtur de Deo, qui est totius naturae causa. Et ideo ea quae sunt secundum naturam, videntur se habere quanto melius nata sunt esse. Sed melius est quod felicitas sit ex aliqua causa per se vel divina vel humana, quam a fortuna, quae est causa per accidens. Quia semper quod est per se, potius est eo quod est per accidens. Non ergo felicitas est a fortuna. 171. Then [i, z], at “If such is the case,” he rejects chance as the cause of happiness for two reasons. First [z, aa], things that are in accord with nature are very good, since nature produces what is suitable. The same is true also of everything made by art or by any cause whatsoever. This is especially the case with the principal cause from which happiness, as the most excellent good, seems to depend. ne reason is that art and all efficient causes operate for the sake of good. It follows, then, that every agent should most aptly arrange, as far as possible, what he does. This particularly applies to God who is the cause of all nature. The things which are in accord with nature seem to be better from their very make-up. But it is better that happiness springs from a per se cause, either divine or human, than from chance which is an incidental cause, for what is per se is preferable to what is incidental. Consequently, chance is not the cause of happiness. Secundam rationem ponit ibi, maximum autem et optimum et cetera. Quae talis est. Felicitas est maximum omnium bonorum humanorum. Quia omnia alia ad ipsam ordinantur, sicut ad finem. Esset autem maxime perniciosum, si hoc a fortuna dependeret; quia multo magis alia humana bona essent fortuita; et ita cessaret humanum studium circa humana bona exequenda, quod esset periculosissimum. Non ergo felicitas est a fortuna. 172. He offers a second reason [z, bb] at “Besides, to abandon.” Happiness is the most perfect of all human goods because all others are ordered to it as to an end. Now it would be very harmful if this good were to depend on chance, for other goods would be much more subject to chance. As a result man’s zeal in pursuing these goods would vanish, a most perilous situation. Chance, therefore, is not the cause of happiness. Deinde cum dicit: manifestum autem est etc., solvit praedictam quaestionem ex diffinitione felicitatis supra posita. Et dicit manifestum esse ex diffinitione felicitatis quid sit verum circa id quod quaeritur in quaestione praemissa. Dictum est enim supra, quod felicitas est operatio animae rationalis secundum virtutem. Id autem quod est secundum virtutem, est secundum rationem motam ab aliqua causa divina. Quod autem est secundum fortunam est praeter rationem. Felicitas igitur non est a fortuna, sed ab aliqua causa humana proxima, a causa autem divina principaliter et primo. Concurrunt autem ad felicitatem quaedam alia bona, in quibus fortuna aliquid operatur. In eis tamen non principaliter consistit felicitas. Sed eorum quaedam necessarium est existere ad decorem quemdam felicitatis. Quaedam vero instrumentaliter cooperantur ad felicitatem, ut supra dictum est. Unde propter ista bona secundaria, non oportet felicitatem fortunae attribuere. 173. Then [b, ii], at “What we seek,” he settles the question we are considering. He says it is evident, from the definition already given (130), where the truth lies in our investigation of the present question. As was previously indicated (127-128), happiness is an activity of the rational soul in accord with virtue. Now what is in accord with virtue is according to reason influenced by some divine cause. But what is according to chance is contrary to reason. It follows that happiness does not spring form chance but from some human cause immediately and from a divine cause principally and ultimately. Certain other goods, however, in which chance plays a part, do conduce to happiness, but happiness does not chiefly consist in them. Some, though, are necessary for a certain enrichment of happiness, and others work instrumentally to attain it, as we have said (169). But we must not attribute happiness to chance because of these secondary goods. Deinde cum dicit: confessa autem haec utique erunt etc., ostendit quod praedicta felicitatis definitio non solum consonat opinionibus aliorum de felicitate, sed etiam aliis quae sunt secundum suam opinionem. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo ostendit quod consonat his quae ab eo supra de felicitate sunt dicta. Secundo concludit quid secundum hanc sententiam recte dicendum sit, ibi, decenter igitur neque bovem et cetera. Dicit ergo primo quod haec, scilicet felicitatem esse operationem secundum virtutem confessa sunt, idest consona his quae in prooemio diximus. Posuimus enim ibi quod optimum humanorum bonorum, scilicet felicitas, sit finis politicae, cuius finis manifeste est operatio secundum virtutem. Politica enim ad hoc praecipuum studium adhibet ferendo leges et praemia, et poenas adhibendo, ut faciat cives bonos et operatores bonorum. Quod est operari secundum virtutem. 174. Then [c], at “This-that happiness,” he shows that the previously discussed definition of happiness is in agreement not only with the opinions of others on happiness but also with observations made in keeping with his own opinion. In regard to this he does two things. First [c, i] he shows what concurs with his earlier remarks about happiness (19-42). Second [c, ii], at “This is why etc.,” he concludes what is the correct view in accord with this opinion. He says first “this”—that happiness is an activity in accord with virtue—“is apparent,” that is, in harmony with the words of the introduction (19-42). We said there that the best human good, happiness, is the end of political science whose goal manifestly is activity in accord with virtue. Political science is especially concerned with framing laws and apportioning rewards and punishments in order to develop good citizens and doers of good works. This is to operate in accord with virtue. Deinde cum dicit: decenter igitur etc., concludit ex praemissa ratione, a quibus felicitas sit subtrahenda secundum ea quae convenienter dicuntur. Et primo dicit, quod nullum animal irrationale dicitur esse felix. Et hoc convenienter quia nullum eorum potest communicare in operatione virtutis, quae est secundum rationem, quam diximus esse felicitatem. 175. Then [c, ii], at “That is why,” he concludes from the reason assigned that happiness cannot be attributed to certain beings according to what has been correctly laid down. First [ii, x] he says that no dumb animal is called happy, and rightly so because none of them can share in the activity of virtue which is in accord with reason and which constitutes happiness. Secundo ibi: propter hanc autem causam etc., excludit a felicitate etiam pueros. Et dicit quod propter eamdem causam, etiam puer non potest dici felix. Quia propter defectum aetatis nondum habet plenum usum rationis ut possit esse operator virtuosarum operationum. Et si aliquando dicuntur beati, hoc est propter spem futurae perfectionis, quae ex aliquibus indiciis de eis concipitur. Ideo autem in praesenti non sunt felices, quia felicitas, ut supra dictum est, indiget et virtute perfecta, ad hoc quod sit, non solum bona, sed optima operatio et vita perfecta ad hoc quod sit bona operatio continua et diuturna. 176. Second [ii, y], at “For the same reason,” he also excludes children from happiness saying that for a similar reason they cannot be called happy. Lacking sufficient age they have not attained that full use of reason requisite for the performance of virtuous actions. If children are sometimes called happy, this is because we see in them sings that give promise of future excellence. At present, therefore, they are not happy, for happiness, as we have indicated (127-126) needs perfect virtue to be not only a good but the best operation and a life perfected by good activity which is continuous and permanent.
A Problem About Happiness
Chapter 9 A. Whether anyone can be called happy in this life. A’ He gives the reason for the problem. — 177-179 πολλαὶ γὰρ μεταβολαὶ γίνονται καὶ παντοῖαι τύχαι κατὰ τὸν βίον, καὶ ἐνδέχεται τὸν μάλιστ' εὐθηνοῦντα μεγάλαις συμφοραῖς περιπεσεῖν ἐπὶ γήρως, καθάπερ ἐν τοῖς Τρωικοῖς περὶ Πριάμου μυθεύεται· τὸν δὲ τοιαύταις χρησάμενον τύχαις καὶ τελευτήσαντα ἀθλίως οὐδεὶς εὐδαιμονίζει. Many changes take place in life and all kinds of fortune are met with in the course of a lifetime. Sometimes a very prosperous man falls into great misfortune in old age as we read of Priam in the epic poems. Certainly no one calls a man happy who has enjoyed such goods of fortune and then ends his days in misery. Chapter 10 B’ He presents the problem. 1. FIRST HE ASKS A QUESTION. — 179 πότερον οὖν οὐδ' ἄλλον οὐδένα ἀνθρώπων εὐδαιμονιστέον ἕως ἂν ζῇ, κατὰ Σόλωνα δὲ χρεὼν τέλος ὁρᾶν; Is no man then to be called happy so long as he lives, but must we consider the end of life, as Solon believed? 2. HE BRINGS UP AN OBJECTION. — 180 εἰ δὲ δὴ καὶ θετέον οὕτως, ἆρά γε καὶ ἔστιν εὐδαίμων τότε ἐπειδὰν ἀποθάνῃ; ἢ τοῦτό γε παντελῶς ἄτοπον, ἄλλως τε καὶ τοῖς λέγουσιν ἡμῖν ἐνέργειάν τινα τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν; If we hold this to be so, it follows that a man will be happy only when he dies. But such an opinion is altogether unreasonable especially for us who maintain that happiness is a kind of activity. 3. HE REJECTS A PARTICULAR ANSWER (FOR TWO REASONS). a. in regard to the first. i. He proposes an answer and rejects it. — 181-182 εἰ δὲ μὴ λέγομεν τὸν τεθνεῶτα εὐδαίμονα, μηδὲ Σόλων τοῦτο βούλεται, ἀλλ' ὅτι τηνικαῦτα ἄν τις ἀσφαλῶς μακαρίσειεν ἄνθρωπον ὡς ἐκτὸς ἤδη τῶν κακῶν ὄντα καὶ τῶν δυστυχημάτων, ἔχει μὲν καὶ τοῦτ' ἀμφισβήτησίν τινα· δοκεῖ γὰρ εἶναί τι τῷ τεθνεῶτι καὶ κακὸν καὶ ἀγαθόν, εἴπερ καὶ τῷ ζῶντι μὴ αἰσθανομένῳ δέ, οἷον τιμαὶ καὶ ἀτιμίαι καὶ τέκνων καὶ ὅλως ἀπογόνων εὐπραξίαι τε καὶ δυστυχίαι. We may say that a mad man is not happy and that Solon did not wish to assert that he is. We may say Solon meant that a man will safely be called happy at death because he is then beyond the reach of evils and misfortune. This meaning, though, gives rise to a problem. It seems that the dead no less than the living, even though unaware of it, are influenced by good and evil, for instance, by honors and dishonors, by the prosperity and misfortune of children and of descendants in general. ii. He brings up a problem. — 183-184 ἀπορίαν δὲ καὶ ταῦτα παρέχει· τῷ γὰρ μακαρίως βεβιωκότι μέχρι γήρως καὶ τελευτήσαντι κατὰ λόγον ἐνδέχεται πολλὰς μεταβολὰς συμβαίνειν περὶ τοὺς ἐκγόνους, καὶ τοὺς μὲν αὐτῶν ἀγαθοὺς εἶναι καὶ τυχεῖν βίου τοῦ κατ' ἀξίαν, τοὺς δ' ἐξ ἐναντίας· δῆλον δ' ὅτι καὶ τοῖς ἀποστήμασι πρὸς τοὺς γονεῖς παντοδαπῶς ἔχειν αὐτοὺς ἐνδέχεται. ἄτοπον δὴ γίνοιτ' ἄν, εἰ συμμεταβάλλοι καὶ ὁ τεθνεὼς καὶ γίνοιτο ὁτὲ μὲν εὐδαίμων πάλιν δ' ἄθλιος· ἄτοπον δὲ καὶ τὸ μηδὲν μηδ' ἐπί τινα χρόνον συνικνεῖσθαι τὰ τῶν ἐκγόνων τοῖς γονεῦσιν. A difficulty, however, here presents itself. It may happen that a man lived happily to a ripe old age and has died a worthy death, and afterwards many changes take place in regard to his children. Some of them are good and have gained a position in life they well deserve, while others are just the opposite. Indeed, it does happen that children are quite different from their parents. Now it is incongruous that a dead man should suffer these same changes so that he at one time becomes happy and then again unhappy. On the other hand, it seems unfitting that the affairs of the children should in no way affect the parents, at least for a certain length of time. b. He gives the second reason. — 185-186 ἀλλ' ἐπανιτέον ἐπὶ τὸ πρότερον ἀπορηθέν· τάχα γὰρ ἂν θεωρηθείη καὶ τὸ νῦν ἐπιζητούμενον ἐξ ἐκείνου. εἰ δὴ τὸ τέλος ὁρᾶν δεῖ καὶ τότε μακαρίζειν ἕκαστον οὐχ ὡς ὄντα μακάριον ἀλλ' ὅτι πρότερον ἦν, πῶς οὐκ ἄτοπον, εἰ ὅτ' ἔστιν εὐδαίμων, μὴ ἀληθεύσεται κατ' αὐτοῦ τὸ ὑπάρχον διὰ τὸ μὴ βούλεσθαι τοὺς ζῶντας εὐδαιμονίζειν διὰ τὰς μεταβολάς, καὶ διὰ τὸ μόνιμόν τι τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν ὑπειληφέναι καὶ μηδαμῶς εὐμετάβολον, τὰς δὲ τύχας πολλάκις ἀνακυκλεῖσθαι περὶ τοὺς αὐτούς; δῆλον γὰρ ὡς εἰ συνακολουθοίημεν ταῖς τύχαις, τὸν αὐτὸν εὐδαίμονα καὶ πάλιν ἄθλιον ἐροῦμεν πολλάκις, χαμαιλέοντά τινα τὸν εὐδαίμονα ἀποφαίνοντες καὶ σαθρῶς ἱδρυμένον. But we must return to our first problem. Perhaps from its solution light will be shed on our present difficulty. Let us suppose that we must look at the end and then declare each man happy, not because he is happy but because he formerly was happy. Now nonsensical, if when a man is happy we may not affirm it of him since we are unwilling to call the living happy on account of the changes in the present life, because we think happiness permanent and not easily changeable, and because fortune often goes in cycles for the same persons. Obviously, if we use fortune as our norm we will very often call the same person happy and again unhappy as though he were a chameleon, and declare him happy and yet insecure in his happiness.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Multae autem transmutationes et cetera. Postquam philosophus ostendit quid est felicitas, hic movet quamdam dubitationem de felicitate: utrum scilicet in hac vita possit aliquis dici felix. Et circa hoc tria facit. Primo ponit dubitationis motivum. Secundo ponit dubitationem, ibi, utrum igitur nullum alium hominem etc.; tertio ponit solutionem, ibi, vel fortunas quidem sequi et cetera. Dicit ergo primo quod multae fiunt transmutationes fortunae, raro enim et in paucis stabilis est, et huiusmodi transmutationes fiunt omnibus modis, puta et de bono in alium et de malo in bonum. Quandoque quidem secundum aliquid parvum, quandoque autem secundum aliquid magnum: quandoque autem secundum aliquid mediocriter se habens. Huiusmodi autem mutationes fieri possunt secundum totam hominis vitam, puta in adolescentia, iuventute vel senectute. 177. After the Philosopher has shown what happiness is, he here raises a problem about happiness, namely [A], whether anyone can be called happy in this life. On this point he proceeds in three steps. First [A’] he gives the reason for the problem. Second [B’], at “Is no man then etc.,” he presents the problem. Third [Lect 16, C’], at “We ought not to make etc.” (B. 1100 b 7), he gives the solution. He says first that many changes take place in life; for life rarely remains the same either good or bad. It is stable in few things, changing from good fortune to bad and from bad to good. Sometimes, indeed, the changes occur in small matters and sometimes in great, and sometimes in matters of medium importance. Changes of this sort occur at any age, in adolescence, maturity or old age. Contingit enim quandoque quod aliquis, qui per totam vitam suam habuit maximam abundantiam exteriorum bonorum, in senectute incidat in maximas calamitates, sicut de Priamo narrat Homerus in versibus heroicis. Nullus autem dicet eum esse felicem qui talibus usus est bonis fortunis et postea finit miserabiliter. Quia hoc ad augmentum miseriae pertinere videtur, quod aliquis de magna prosperitate in magnam miseriam deveniat. 178. Sometimes it happens that a man has had an abundance of external goods all his life, and in old age falls into great misfortune as Priam did, according to the epic poem of Homer. No one will call that man happy who has enjoyed such goods of fortune and ends his life in misery. The fact that one has been reduced from great prosperity to extreme wretchedness seems to add to his misery. Deinde cum dicit: utrum igitur nullum etc., movet dubitationem intentam. Et primo proponit quaestionem. Secundo obiicit ad eam, ibi, si autem utique et cetera. Tertio excludit quamdam responsionem, ibi, si autem non dicimus et cetera. Proponitur ergo primo quaestio de opinione Solonis, qui fuit unus de septem sapientibus et condidit Atheniensium leges. Qui considerans humanam vitam fortunae mutationibus esse obnoxiam, dixit quod nullus debet dici felix quamdiu vivit: sed solum in fine vitae suae. Est ergo quaestio, utrum propter id quod accidit circa Priamum, nullus alius homo sit dicendus beatus quamdiu vivit, sed secundum sententiam Solonis optimum est considerare finem vitae, si scilicet felicitas perseveret usque in finem, ut sic aliquis felix dicatur; vel non oporteat hoc observare. 179. Then [B’], at “Is no man then,” he proposes the difficulty. But first [B’, 2], at “If we hold this etc.,” he brings up an objection. Third [B, 3], at “We may say etc.,” he rejects a particular answer. First then he asks the question about the view of Solon, one of the seven wise men, who framed the laws of the Athenians. Considering man’s life as subject to the changes of fortune, Solon said that no one ought to be called happy so long as he lives, but only at the end of his life. In light of what happened to Priam, the question arises whether any man is to be called happy so long as he lives. Is it best, as Solon holds, to consider the end of life if happiness continues that long, in order that a man may be called happy? Or should this be disregarded? Deinde cum dicit: si autem utique etc., obiicit ad quaestionem praedictam, improbando dictum Solonis. Si enim aliquis ita ponat sicut Solon dixit, sequitur quod homo sit felix tunc quando moritur. Sed hoc videtur inconveniens, et propter alias rationes, utputa quia mors est maximus defectus cum felicitas sit summa perfectio, et iterum propter hoc quod supra diximus, quod felicitas est operatio quaedam; mortui autem non videntur habere operationem aliquam; non igitur possunt dici felices. Et est notandum quod philosophus non loquitur hic de felicitate futurae vitae, sed de felicitate praesentis vitae, utrum attribui possit homini dum vivit vel solum in morte. 180. Then [B, 2], at “If we hold,” he brings up an objection to the question that was asked, and disproves the saying of Solon. If we hold as true what Solon said, it follows that man will be happy only when he dies. But this seems unreasonable on other grounds, for example, because death is the worst of evils and happiness the greatest of perfections. Besides, happiness is a kind of activity, as we indicated above (119-126). But a dead man does not seem to have an activity. The dead, therefore, cannot be called happy. It should be noted that the Philosopher is not here speaking of happiness in a future life, but of happiness in the present life. Can we attribute happiness to man while he lives or only at death? Deinde cum dicit: si autem non dicimus mortuum felicem etc., excludit quandam responsionem. Et hoc duabus rationibus, quarum secundam ponit, ibi, sed revertendum ad prius quaesitum et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo proponit responsionem et improbat eam. Secundo ex hoc movet quamdam quaestionem, ibi, quaestionem autem et haec tribuunt et cetera. Circa primum considerandum est, quod praecedens Aristotelis ratio ostendebat quod aliquis non est felix in morte. Concedet autem hoc aliquis, dicens mortuum non esse felicem, nec Solon hoc dicere voluit, quod scilicet aliquis cum moritur sit felix. Sed voluit dicere quod aliquis tunc cum homo moritur potest firmam sententiam dare de eo quod fuerit beatus, quia iam est extra periculum malorum et infortuniorum, ut de cetero non possit dubitari de felicitate ipsius. Sed hanc responsionem excludit dicens quod hoc habet quamdam dubitationem. 181. Then [B’, 3], at “We may say,” he rejects an answer, and this for two reasons. He gives the second reason [3, b] at “But we must return to our first problem etc.” In regard to the first [3, a] he does two things. Initially [a, i] he propose an answer and rejects it. Second [a, ii] by reason of this he brings up a problem at “A difficulty, however, here presents itself etc.” In regard to the first point we must consider that the previous argument of Aristotle showed that a man is not happy in death. Now this will be granted by anyone who says that a dead man is not happy: Solon did not mean that a man is happy when he dies. But he did mean that when a man is dead, a valid argument can be made about his happiness, because the dead man is now beyond the danger of evils and misfortune so that there is no longer any doubt about it. But he rejects this answer saying it contains an uncertainty. Mortuus enim a vivo differt in hoc quod caret sensu. Contingit autem quod homini viventi proveniat aliquod bonum vel malum, etiam si illud non sentiat; puta si eo ignorante infametur aut filii eius occidantur aut divitiae eius diripiantur: ergo pari ratione videtur quod mortuo possit bonum vel malum accidere, quamvis non sentiat. Et loquitur de bono vel malo vitae civilis, ut patet per exempla quae subdit, dicens: puta honores et inhonorationes. Quandoque enim mortuis aliqui honores exhibentur, sicut quod laudantur et memoria eorum celebratur. Et similiter fiunt eis quaedam exhonorationes, puta cum extumulantur et eorum ossa comburuntur. Similiter etiam videntur aliqua bona vel mala eis posse accidere secundum prosperitates et infortunia filiorum et nepotum. Sic igitur videtur quod nec etiam mortui omnino sunt extra mala et infortunia et ita (nec) etiam in morte posset dici quod essent felices. 182. A dead man differs from a living man in the loss of consciousness. A good thing or a bad thing—such as defamation of character, the murder of his children, or the loss of riches—could conceivably happen to someone still living, and he might not feel it precisely because he does not know about it. By the same argument, it seems, some good or evil could happen to a dead man who is unaware of it. Here Aristotle is talking about good and evil in public life as his examples—“honor and dishonor”—show. Sometimes certain honors are given to the dead when they are praised and their memory celebrated. Likewise certain dishonors are heaped upon them, for example, when their bodies are exhumed and their remains burned. Also something good or bad can happen to them by reason of the prosperity or misfortune of their children and their grandchildren. Then it would seem that not even the dead are entirely beyond evils and misfortunes. Consequently, even in death men cannot be called happy. Deinde cum dicit quaestionem autem et haec tribuunt etc., interponit quamdam quaestionem occasione praemissorum. Et dicit quod ista, scilicet prosperitates et infortunia filiorum et nepotum, afferunt quaestionem. Contingit enim quandoque quod aliquis feliciter vivit usque ad senectutem et moritur feliciter secundum rationem felicitatis assignatam, et tamen postea fiunt multae transmutationes circa filios eius, quorum quidam sunt boni et vivunt secundum dignitatem patris, quidam autem e contrario se habent. Manifestum est enim quod secundum omnem modum contingit diversificari filios a parentibus, utpote quod bonorum parentum sint mali filii, et divitum pauperes. Hac autem positione facta, inconveniens ex utraque parte sequi videtur. 183. Then [a, ii], at “A difficulty, however,” he interposes a difficulty arising from the premises. Such things as the prosperity and misfortunes of children and grandchildren present a problem for him. It happens sometimes that a man lives happily—in the way we have described happiness—to old age and dies a worthy death but afterwards many changes take place in regard to his children, some of whom are good after the example of a worthy father, but others just the opposite. Indeed it does happen that children are quite different from their parents: good parents have wicked children and wealthy parents, needy children. from this statement something unfitting seems to follow for both parents and children. Nam inconveniens est si etiam mortuus transmutetur propter huiusmodi infortunia, ut qui aliquando fuerit felix rursum fiat miser, et ex alia parte inconveniens videtur si ad minus in aliquo vicino tempore, illa quae contingunt filiis in nullo pertineant ad parentes etiam mortuos, ut ex hoc eorum felicitas impediatur. 184. It is inappropriate that a dead man should suffer change because of misfortunes of this sort, so that he who at one time is happy now becomes unhappy. On the other hand it seems improper if, at least for a short time after death, the lot of children should in no way affect the happiness of deceased parents. Deinde cum dicit: sed revertendum etc., ponit secundam rationem ad excludendum responsionem praemissam. Et dicit, quod praetermissa secunda quaestione, revertendum est ad primam quaestionem, ex cuius solutione videri poterit veritas quaestionis secundae. Videtur autem quod praedicta responsio non sit conveniens. Si enim oportet respicere ad finem vitae humanae et tunc dicere aliquem felicem, non quod tunc vere beatus sit sed quod prius beatus erat, hoc videtur esse inconveniens quod quando aliquis est felix non vere dicatur quod sit felix, sed postea vere dicatur de eo quod fuit felix, veritas autem propositionis de praeterito dependet ex veritate propositionis de praesenti. Ideo enim aliquid verum est fuisse, quia verum fuit esse. 185. Then [3, b], at “But we must return,” he gives a second reason for rejecting the previous answer. He says that, passing over the second problem, we must return to the first, the solution of which will shed light on the truth of the second. Now it seems that the answer given is not consistent. If we must look to the end of life and then call a man happy, not because he is then truly happy but because he was previously happy, there seems to be this inconsistency: that when a man is happy, we may not say of him that he is happy, since the truth of a statement in he past is founded on the statement being true at the time it actually occurred. Therefore “ fuisse ” is true of a thing because “ esse ” was true of it. Sed aliqui nolebant dicere hominem esse felicem quando est, propter transmutationes praesentis vitae, et propter hoc, quod existimabant felicitatem esse quiddam permanens et non de facili transmutabile, alioquin non quietaret desiderium naturae. Desiderat enim unusquisque naturaliter firmiter permanere in bono quod habet. Sed fortunae multoties circulariter revolvuntur circa eosdem, ut scilicet de bonis deveniant in mala et e converso. Et sic manifestum est, quod si in iudicando de felicitate, sequamur considerationem fortunae, et dicamus in hac vita de aliquo quod sit felix, multoties de uno et eodem dicemus quod sit felix et rursus quod sit miser. Et sic annunciabimus aliquem esse felicem ad modum camaleontis, qui scilicet est animal mutans colorem, secundum colores diversorum corporum appositorum. Et annuntiabimus felicem esse debiliter firmatum, quod est contra rationem felicitatis. 186. But some were unwilling to call a man happy because of the changes in the present life inasmuch as they were under the impression that happiness was something permanent and not easily changeable; otherwise it would not satisfy the natural desire. For everyone naturally desires to remain secure in the good he possesses. But the wheel of fortune very often turns for the same persons, so that they change from good fortune to bad and conversely. Thus it is evident that if in judging about happiness we should follow the consideration of fortune and should say of someone that he is happy in this life, very often we will say of one and the same person that he is happy and again that he is unhappy. In this way we will be saying that a person is happy after the manner of a chameleon, an animal which changes color in keeping with different surroundings. We will be declaring that the happy are insecure in their happiness which is contrary to the nature of happiness.
Happiness and Changes of Fortune
Chapter 10 I. HE SOLVES THE PRINCIPAL PROBLEM. C’ The philosopher here solves (his problem). a. He introduces a point necessary for the solution of the problem. — 187 ἢ τὸ μὲν ταῖς τύχαις ἐπακολουθεῖν οὐδαμῶς ὀρθόν; οὐ γὰρ ἐν ταύταις τὸ εὖ ἢ κακῶς, ἀλλὰ προσδεῖται τούτων ὁ ἀνθρώπινος βίος, καθάπερ εἴπομεν, κύριαι δ' εἰσὶν αἱ κατ' ἀρετὴν ἐνέργειαι τῆς εὐδαιμονίας, αἱ δ' ἐναντίαι τοῦ ἐναντίου. We ought not to make changes of fortune our norm because good and evil do not consist in these, although human living does stand in need of external goods, as we have indicated. But virtuous action is the dominant factor in human happiness just as vicious action is the dominant factor in man’s unhappiness. b. He applies it to the solution of the present problem. i. First he shows that deeds of virtue are especially long-lasting compared to other human things. — 188-190 μαρτυρεῖ δὲ τῷ λόγῳ καὶ τὸ νῦν διαπορηθέν. περὶ οὐδὲν γὰρ οὕτως ὑπάρχει τῶν ἀνθρωπίνων ἔργων βεβαιότης ὡς περὶ τὰς ἐνεργείας τὰς κατ' ἀρετήν· μονιμώτεραι γὰρ καὶ τῶν ἐπιστημῶν αὗται δοκοῦσιν εἶναι· τούτων δ' αὐτῶν αἱ τιμιώταται μονιμώτεραι διὰ τὸ μάλιστα καὶ συνεχέστατα καταζῆν ἐν αὐταῖς τοὺς μακαρίους· τοῦτο γὰρ ἔοικεν αἰτίῳ τοῦ μὴ γίνεσθαι περὶ αὐτὰς λήθην. This contention is strengthened by what we have just learned, for virtuous actions are more uniformly constant than other human activities. They are more abiding apparently than the speculative sciences. Among the virtues the most noble seem to be more lasting because the happy man is quite intent on them and because he lives according to them at all times. For this reason man does not forget about the virtues. ii. He shows that... happiness can endure all during life. x. FROM THE ACTIONS THEMSELVES. — 191-192 ὑπάρξει δὴ τὸ ζητούμενον τῷ εὐδαίμονι, καὶ ἔσται διὰ βίου τοιοῦτος· ἀεὶ γὰρ ἢ μάλιστα πάντων πράξει καὶ θεωρήσει τὰ κατ' ἀρετήν, The happy man will have what we had inquired about, for he will be happy all his life. He will always, or nearly always, perform virtuous actions and be contemplating the life of virtue. y. FROM THE GOODS OF FORTUNE. aa. (In general). — 193 καὶ τὰς τύχας οἴσει κάλλιστα καὶ πάντῃ πάντως ἐμμελῶς ὅ γ' ὡς ἀληθῶς ἀγαθὸς καὶ τετράγωνος ἄνευ ψόγου. Because he is really good and four-square without reproach, he will bear all changes of fortune most admirably and will be eminently prudent in all matters. bb. In detail. — 194-197 πολλῶν δὲ γινομένων κατὰ τύχην καὶ διαφερόντων μεγέθει καὶ μικρότητι, τὰ μὲν μικρὰ τῶν εὐτυχημάτων, ὁμοίως δὲ καὶ τῶν ἀντικειμένων, δῆλον ὡς οὐ ποιεῖ ῥοπὴν τῆς ζωῆς, τὰ δὲ μεγάλα καὶ πολλὰ γινόμενα μὲν εὖ μακαριώτερον τὸν βίον ποιήσει καὶ γὰρ αὐτὰ συνεπικοσμεῖν πέφυκεν, καὶ ἡ χρῆσις αὐτῶν καλὴ καὶ σπουδαία γίνεται, ἀνάπαλιν δὲ συμβαίνοντα θλίβει καὶ λυμαίνεται τὸ μακάριον· λύπας τε γὰρ ἐπιφέρει καὶ ἐμποδίζει πολλαῖς ἐνεργείαις. ὅμως δὲ καὶ ἐν τούτοις διαλάμπει τὸ καλόν, ἐπειδὰν φέρῃ τις εὐκόλως πολλὰς καὶ μεγάλας ἀτυχίας, μὴ δι' ἀναλγησίαν, ἀλλὰ γεννάδας ὢν καὶ μεγαλόψυχος. Many events differing in importance happen by the change of fortune. A short run of good luck or of bad luck clearly does not notably affect life. But great and frequent good fortune will be an occasion of a happier life, for external goods were made to enrich human life and their use is becoming and a means of virtue. On the contrary, great and frequent evils cause the happy man external annoyance and internal affliction bringing about sadness and hindering many good works. However, even here the good of virtue shines forth when a man gracefully endures frequent and major misfortunes not because he is insensible to the sorrow but because he is courageous and magnanimous. iii. He shows that all inconveniences are avoided if we follow this teaching. — 198-199 εἰ δ' εἰσὶν αἱ ἐνέργειαι κύριαι τῆς ζωῆς, καθάπερ εἴπομεν, οὐδεὶς ἂν γένοιτο τῶν μακαρίων ἄθλιος· οὐδέποτε γὰρ πράξει τὰ μισητὰ καὶ τὰ φαῦλα. τὸν γὰρ ὡς ἀληθῶς ἀγαθὸν καὶ ἔμφρονα πάσας οἰόμεθα τὰς τύχας εὐσχημόνως φέρειν καὶ ἐκ τῶν ὑπαρχόντων ἀεὶ τὰ κάλλιστα πράττειν, καθάπερ καὶ στρατηγὸν ἀγαθὸν τῷ παρόντι στρατοπέδῳ χρῆσθαι πολεμικώτατα καὶ σκυτοτόμον ἐκ τῶν δοθέντων σκυτῶν κάλλιστον ὑπόδημα ποιεῖν· τὸν αὐτὸν δὲ τρόπον καὶ τοὺς ἄλλους τεχνίτας ἅπαντας. εἰ δ' οὕτως, ἄθλιος μὲν οὐδέποτε γένοιτ' ἂν ὁ εὐδαίμων, οὐ μὴν μακάριός γε, ἂν Πριαμικαῖς τύχαις περιπέσῃ. οὐδὲ δὴ ποικίλος γε καὶ εὐμετάβολος· οὔτε γὰρ ἐκ τῆς εὐδαιμονίας κινηθήσεται ῥᾳδίως, οὐδ' ὑπὸ τῶν τυχόντων ἀτυχημάτων ἀλλ' ὑπὸ μεγάλων καὶ πολλῶν, ἔκ τε τῶν τοιούτων οὐκ ἂν γένοιτο πάλιν εὐδαίμων ἐν ὀλίγῳ χρόνῳ, ἀλλ' εἴπερ, ἐν πολλῷ τινὶ καὶ τελείῳ, μεγάλων καὶ καλῶν ἐν αὐτῷ γενόμενος ἐπήβολος. If virtuous actions play the dominant role in a happy life that we have indicated, a happy person will not become unhappy nor will he sometimes perform hateful and evil actions. As a truly good and wise man in the estimation of all, he will bear the changes of fortune in a becoming manner. He will always make the best of the existing circumstances like a general who employs his present forces to the best advantage in battle or like the cobbler who makes the best shoe possible from the leather at hand or like other artisans in similar circumstance. This being the case, then the unhappy man will certainly not become happy. We can say too that the happy man will not fall into the misfortunes of Priam. He will not easily be moved. He will not be changed from happiness by minor misfortunes but only by great and frequent ones. After such catastrophies he will not become happy again soon but, if indeed he does, it will take an abundance of good and noble deeds during a long period. c. He brings to an end his own thoughts on happiness. — 200-202 τί οὖν κωλύει λέγειν εὐδαίμονα τὸν κατ' ἀρετὴν τελείαν ἐνεργοῦντα καὶ τοῖς ἐκτὸς ἀγαθοῖς ἱκανῶς κεχορηγημένον μὴ τὸν τυχόντα χρόνον ἀλλὰ τέλειον βίον; ἢ προσθετέον καὶ βιωσόμενον οὕτω καὶ τελευτήσοντα κατὰ λόγον; ἐπειδὴ τὸ μέλλον ἀφανὲς ἡμῖν ἐστίν, τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν δὲ τέλος καὶ τέλειον τίθεμεν πάντῃ πάντως. εἰ δ' οὕτω, μακαρίους ἐροῦμεν τῶν ζώντων οἷς ὑπάρχει καὶ ὑπάρξει τὰ λεχθέντα, μακαρίους δ' ἀνθρώπους. καὶ περὶ μὲν τούτων ἐπὶ τοσοῦτον διωρίσθω. What therefore hinders us from calling that man happy who acts in accord with perfect virtue and has sufficient external goods not for a short time but all during life? We must also add that he will live his whole life in this way and will die in a manner befitting reason because the future is not clear to us; and we understand happiness as an end altogether perfect in every respect. If this be so, we shall call those happy in this life—happy we must remember as men—who have now and will have the conditions we presented. Now we have said enough on these points.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Vel fortunas quidem sequi et cetera. Praemissa dubitatione, hic philosophus dubitationem solvit. Et primo solvit principalem dubitationem. Secundo secundariam, ibi, pronepotum autem fortunas et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo praemittit quiddam quod est necessarium ad quaestionis solutionem. Secundo applicat ad solutionem praesentis quaestionis, ibi, testatur autem sermoni et cetera. Circa primum considerandum est, quod felicitas essentialiter consistit in operatione virtutis. Bona autem exteriora, quae subiacent fortunae pertinent secundario et quasi instrumentaliter ad felicitatem. Et ideo dicit quod non debemus sequi fortunas in iudicando aliquem esse miserum vel felicem, quia bonum vel malum hominis, quod attenditur secundum rationem, non consistit principaliter in his. Sed humana vita indiget his instrumentaliter, sicut dictum est. Sed operationes secundum virtutem sunt principales et dominium habentes in hoc, quod est aliquem esse felicem, ut scilicet ex hoc principaliter dicatur aliquis felix quod operatur secundum virtutem; et contrariae operationes, scilicet vitiosae, habent principalitatem et dominium in contrario, scilicet in miseria; ut scilicet ille vere sit miser, qui vitiosis operationibus insistit. 187. After explaining his problem, the Philosopher here [C’] solves it. First [C’, 1] he solves the principal problem. Second [Lect. 17; 2], at “It seems quite foreign etc.” (B. 1101 a 22), he solves the lesser one. In regard to the first he does two things. First [1, a] he introduces a point necessary for the solution of the problem. Second [1, b], at “This, contention is strengthened,” he applies it to the solution of the present problem. In regard to the initial point we should consider that while happiness consists essentially in the performance of virtuous actions, external goods that are subject to fortune are in a way tools of happiness. Hence he says we ought not to make changes of luck the norm for reckoning a man happy or unhappy, because man’s good or evil, which is judged by reason, does not consist principally in such changes of luck. Human living however does stand in need of external goods as means, as has been indicated (163). But virtuous actions are the principal and predominant factor in a man’s happiness so that he can be called happy principally because he acts virtuously. On the contrary, vicious actions are powerful and dominant in the opposite state, which is misery, so that he is truly miserable who is occupied with evil deeds. Deinde cum dicit: testatur autem sermoni etc., adaptat quod dictum est, ad solutionem quaestionis. Et primo ostendit, quod operationes secundum virtutem, maxime inveniuntur permanentes inter omnes res humanas. Secundo ostendit quod secundum praedicta poterit felicitas permanere per totam vitam, ibi, existet autem utique et cetera. Tertio ostendit, quod secundum praedicta evitantur omnia inconvenientia, ibi: si autem sunt operationes dominae vitae et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod huic sermoni, quo scilicet dicimus operationes secundum virtutem esse principales in felicitate, attestatur illud, quod parum supra quaesitum est de permanentia felicitatis. Nihil enim humanorum invenitur esse ita constanter permanens, sicut operationes secundum virtutem. Manifestum est enim quod exteriora bona, et etiam interiora ad corpus pertinentia, cum sint materialia et corporalia, per se subiecta sunt mutationi; ea vero quae ad animam pertinent, solum per accidens, unde minus subiacent mutationi. Eorum vero, quae ad animam humanam pertinent, quaedam pure pertinent ad intellectum, sicut scientiae; quaedam vero ad operationes vitae, sicut virtutes, quae quidem sunt permanentiores etiam ipsis disciplinis, id est scientiis demonstrativis. 188. Then [1, b], at “This contention is strengthened,” he applies what was said just now (187) to the solution of the problem. First [b, i] he shows that deeds of virtue are especially long-lasting compared to other human things. Second [b, ii], at “The happy man will have etc.,” he shows that in keeping with what was said, happiness can endure all during life. Third [b, iii], at “If virtuous actions play etc.,” he shows that all inconveniences are avoided if we follow this teaching. He says first that what we have now learned (186) about the permanence of happiness confirms our contention that virtuous actions are of foremost importance in happiness. The reason is that no human activity is found so uniformly constant as these. It is clear that external goods, and even internal bodily goods, because material and corporeal, are subject to change by their nature. But the goods that belong to he soul are changeable only indirectly, and so less liable to change. Of the goods pertaining to a man’s soul, some belong to the intellect as the sciences, and some to the activities of living as the virtues. These virtues are indeed more lasting than the disciplines, i.e., the demonstrative sciences. Quod quidem intelligendum est, non quantum ad materiam. Nam scientiae demonstrativae sunt circa necessaria, quae impossibile est aliter se habere. Sed est intelligendum quantum ad exercitium actus. Non enim imminet nobis ita continuum exercitium speculationis scientiarum, sicut operationum secundum virtutem. Continue enim occurrunt nobis ea in quibus oportet nos agere secundum virtutem, vel contra virtutem; sicut usus ciborum, consortia mulierum, collocutiones hominum adinvicem, et alia huiusmodi, in quibus continue versatur vita humana. Unde oportet quod habitus virtutis magis per consuetudinem firmetur in homine, quam habitus scientiae. 189. However, this must not be understood as referring to the matter, for demonstrative sciences have as their object necessary things which cannot be otherwise. It is to be understood rather as referring to the exercise of the act. Now we do not have the same opportunity to cultivate the study of the sciences continually as we do to practice virtue, for situations are constantly arising where we must act according to virtue or contrary to virtue as in the use of food, association with women, conversations with other men and similar actions with which human life is continuously concerned. Hence it is reasonable that the habit of virtue be more firmly fixed in man because it is used more than the habit of science. Et inter ipsas virtutes illae, quae sunt honorabilissimae videntur esse permanentiores, tum quia magis intensae, tum etiam quia magis continue operantur ad hoc quod secundum eas vivatur, et tales sunt operationes virtutum, in quibus consistit felicitas, quia sunt perfectissimae, ut dictum est. Et istud videtur esse causa quare homo non obliviscitur esse virtuosus; quia scilicet continue in his homo exercitatur. Est et alia causa: quia scilicet virtus consistit principaliter in inclinatione appetitus, quae per oblivionem non tollitur. 190. Among the virtues themselves, the most noble seem to be more lasting both because they are more intense and because men work more constantly to live according to them. Such are the virtuous operations in which happiness consists, because they are most perfect as has been proved (128, 130, 150, 160, 164). This is naturally the reason why man does not forget to be virtuous because he continually has the occasion to exercise the virtues. Another reason too is that virtue consists chiefly in the inclination of the appetite which is not destroyed by forgetfulness. Deinde cum dicit: existet autem utique etc., ostendit quod, secundum praedicta, felicitas poterit per totam vitam durare. Et dicit quod, cum operationes secundum virtutem sint permanentissimae, ut dictum est; si in eis principaliter ponatur felicitas, ut diximus, sequetur quod felici inerit id quod quaesitum est in praecedenti quaestione, scilicet quod erit talis per totam vitam suam. Et hoc primo probat per ipsas operationes, ibi, semper enim et cetera. 191. Then [b, ii], at “The happy man will have,” he shows that according to this doctrine happiness can last a lifetime. He says that virtuous actions are most lasting, as was pointed out (188-190). If then happiness be placed principally in them as we have said (153-190), it would follow that the happy man will have what was inquired about in a previous question, that is, he will be happy all his life. He proves this first [ii, x] from the actions themselves at “He will always.” Ille enim qui habet habitum perfectum, semper potest operari secundum illum habitum vel maxime continue inter omnes; sed felix habet perfectam virtutem, ut supra habitum est. Ergo ipse semper vel maxime poterit operari in vita activa quae sunt secundum virtutem, et speculari in vita contemplativa. 192. One who has a habit perfectly can act always or almost continually according to that habit in everything he does. The happy man possesses perfect virtue, as was explained above (187, 188). Consequently, he can always or nearly always or nearly always perform virtuous actions in a life of activity and can attentively consider in a life of contemplation. Secundo ibi: et fortunas feret etc., ostendit idem ex bonis fortunae, quae sunt secundaria in felicitate. Et dicit quod felix optime feret omnes fortunas, et in omnibus se habebit omnino prudenter, utpote qui est vere bonus, non secundum apparentiam solam, et est tetragonus sine vituperio, idest perfectus quatuor virtutibus cardinalibus, ut quidam exponunt. Sed hoc non videtur esse secundum intentionem Aristotelis, qui nunquam invenitur talem enumerationem facere. Sed tetragonum nominat perfectum in virtute ad similitudinem corporis cubici, habentis sex superficies quadratas, propter quod bene stat in qualibet superficie. Et similiter virtuosus in qualibet fortuna bene se habet. Quia igitur ad virtutem pertinet omnes fortunas bene ferre, patet quod propter nullam fortunae mutationem, desistet felix ab operatione virtutis. Et hoc consequenter in speciali ostendit quasi per modum divisionis cum subdit: multis autem factis et cetera. 193. Second [ii, y], at “Because he is really good,” he shows the same thing from the goods of fortune, an object of lesser importance in happiness. He says [y, aa] that the happy man will bear all changes of fortune most admirably and will be eminently prudent in all matters, since he is really a good man and not superficially so. He is “foursquare” without reproach, or, as some have explained, perfect in the four cardinal virtues. But this interpretation does not seem to be according to the mind of Aristotle who has never been found making such an enumeration. The tetragon does however indicate something perfect in virtue after the manner of a cube, which has six squared surfaces and so lies evenly on any surface. Similarly the virtuous person is of an even temperament in any fortune. Since therefore, it pertains to virtue to bear all fortune becomingly, obviously the happy man will not cease to act virtuously because of any change of fortune. He shows this then in detail [y, bb], as it were by way of division, when he adds “Many events.” Et dicit quod, cum multa bona et mala secundum fortunam eveniant, quae differunt magnitudine et parvitate, manifestum est quod parvae prosperitates et similiter parva infortunia, non inclinant vitam de felicitate in miseriam vel e converso. Si autem fuerint multa et magna, aut erunt bona aut mala. Si bona, conferent ad hoc quod vita hominis sit beatior. Quia sicut supra dictum est, felicitas indiget exterioribus bonis, vel ad decorem, vel inquantum sunt instrumenta operationis secundum virtutem. Et quantum ad primum dicit quod nata sunt simul decorare vitam felicis. Quantum autem ad secundum dicit quod usus exteriorum bonorum est bonus et virtuosus, inquantum scilicet virtus utitur eis, ut quibusdam instrumentis ad bene agendum. 194. He says that since many good and bad things differing in importance may happen by changes of fortune, it is evident that a short run of good luck and likewise a short run of bad luck do not change life from happiness to misery or conversely. If, however, they are great and frequent they will be either good or bad. If good, they will make a man’s life happier. The reason is that, as was indicated above (169, 173), happiness has need of external goods either as adornments or as means of virtuous actions. In regard to adornments he says that they were made to enrich the life of man. As to the means of virtuous action, he says that the use of external goods is becoming and virtuous insofar as virtues make use of them to perform worthy deeds. Si autem accidant e converso, ut scilicet sint multa et magna mala, inferunt quidem felici quamdam tribulationem exterius et conturbationem interius; quia interius inferunt tristitias, et exterius impediunt a multis bonis operationibus. Non tamen per ea tollitur totaliter operatio virtutis; quia etiam ipsis infortuniis virtus bene utitur. Et sic refulget in eis bonum virtutis, inquantum scilicet aliquis faciliter sustinet multa et magna infortunia: non propter hoc quod non sentiat dolorem seu tristitiam, sicut Stoici posuerunt; sed quia tamquam virilis et magnanimus, huiusmodi tristitiis eius ratio non succumbit. 195. If on the contrary the evils should be frequent and great, they will cause the happy man external annoyance and internal affliction, because internally they bring about sadness and externally they hinder good works. However they do not eliminate virtuous action entirely, because virtue makes good use even of misfortunes themselves. In this way the good of virtue shines forth insofar as a man gracefully endures frequent and great misfortunes, not because he may not feel the sorrow or sadness as the Stoics held but, being courageous and magnanimous, his reason does not succumb to such afflictions. Haec enim fuit diversitas inter Stoicos et Peripateticos, quorum princeps fuit Aristoteles, quod Stoici posuerunt tristitiam nullo modo cadere in virtuosum, quia in corporalibus et exterioribus rebus nullum bonum hominis consistere ponebant; Peripatetici autem ponebant in homine virtuoso tristitiam ratione moderatam, non autem quae rationem subverteret. Ponebant enim quod in corporalibus et exterioribus rebus, aliquod hominis bonum consistat, non quidem maximum, sed minimum, in quantum scilicet adiuvat et decorat virtutem. 196. This, in fact, was the difference between the Stoics and the Peripatetics, whose leader was Aristotle. The Stoics held that sorrow in no way afflicts a virtuous man, because, in their view, corporeal or external things are not in any sense a good of man. The Peripatetics, on the contrary, said that a virtuous man is affected by sadness, yet this does not overwhelm reason but is moderated by it. In their opinion corporeal and external things do not constitute the greatest but the least good of man and this in the degree that they help him. Videtur tamen aliqua transmutatio virtuoso posse accidere, quae omnino auferat eius felicitatem impediendo totaliter operationem virtutis, puta si per aegritudinem, maniam vel furiam seu quamcumque amentiam incurrat. Sed cum felicitas non quaeratur nisi in vita humana, quae est secundum rationem, deficiente usu rationis deficit talis vita. Unde status amentiae reputandus est quantum ad vitam humanam, sicut status mortis. Et ideo idem videtur esse dicendum de eo qui permansit in operatione virtutis usque ad amentiam, sicut si permansisset usque ad mortem. 197. But it should be observed that some change could happen that would entirely take away a man’s happiness by hindering virtuous action altogether. for example, some sickness could cause madness or insanity or any other mental breakdown. Since happiness may not be attained except by living humanly or in accord with reason, when the use of reason is gone, human living is not possible. Consequently, in what concerns living humanly, the condition of madness must be equated with the condition of death. So seemingly we must say the same of him who continues in virtuous action until loss of mind as if he had continued until death. Deinde cum dicit: si autem sunt operationes etc., ex praemissis excludit inconvenientia, quae sequi videbantur. Et dicit quod, si operationes virtuosae habent dominium in felicitate, ut dictum est, non sequitur quod beatus fiat miser propter infortunia, propter quae non operabitur aliqua odibilia et mala, scilicet virtuti contraria. Sed possumus existimare de eo probabiliter, quod propter virtutem perfectam, quam habet tamquam vere bonus et sapiens omnes fortunas feret decenter, quod est secundum virtutem operari in qualibet fortuna. Etsi non easdem operationes faciet in qualibet, sed secundum ea quae existunt, scilicet prospera vel adversa, semper operabitur optime, quasi utens his quae affert fortuna sicut quibusdam datis; prout etiam ad bonum ducem pertinet ut exercitu sibi dato maxime utatur bellicose secundum exercitus condicionem, aliter tamen faciet si habeat in exercitu milites expertos et aliter si habeat exercitum tironum. Et similiter ad incisorem coriorum pertinet, quod ex datis coriis optimum calceamentum faciat. Meliora tamen calceamenta faciet ex uno corio quam ex alio. Et idem etiam est in omnibus aliis artificibus. 198. Then [b, iii], at “If virtuous actions play,” he excludes the unsuitable things that seemed to follow from the premises. He says that if virtuous actions play the dominant role in happiness, as we have asserted (188), it will not follow that the happy man becomes unhappy on account of misfortunes, or that because of misfortune he will perform actions contrary to virtue. But by reason of his perfect virtue the happy man—it can be predicted—will bear all changes of fortune becomingly like a truly good and wise man. In other words he will act according to virtue under every condition. Even if he does not perform the same actions in every contingency, he will always act most nobly according as the circumstances are favorable or unfavorable. He will use the material that fortune provides in the way that a good general with an awareness of the condition of his army ought to dispose his existing forces to the best advantage in battle. A commander will do one thing if he has seasoned troops and another if he has an army of raw recruits. Likewise, a cobbler ought to make the best shoes possible from the leather at hand. He will of course make better shoes form one piece of leather than from another. The same may be said of all other craftsmen. Et si ita est, nunquam miser per aliqua prospera supervenientia efficietur felix. Quia illis prosperis male utetur, et operans vitiose semper miser remanebit. Et similiter ille qui est felix, non incidet in infortunia Priami. Primo quidem, quia prudenter ea praecavebit. Secundo, quia si superveniant ex improviso, optime ea feret, ut dictum est. Et ita non facile transmutabitur a felicitate ad miseriam neque per quaecumque infortunia, sed per multa et magna quae eum ab operatione rationis abducent, et si sic sit factus infelix, non rursus de facili fiet felix, sed in multo tempore abundantiam accipiet magnorum et bonorum, tum per exercitium virtuosi actus, tum etiam per reparationem exterioris fortunae. 199. If this is so, the unhappy man will not be made happy by any additional good fortune. The reason is hat he will use that good fortune badly and the evildoer will always remain unhappy. Likewise the happy man will not fall into the misfortune of Priam. First because he will prudently guard against it. Second, because if he should be stricken unexpectedly, he will bear it most gracefully, as we have pointed out (198). He will not, therefore, be changed easily from happiness to unhappiness by any misfortune whatsoever except by frequent and great changes that deprive him of the use of reason. If he has been made unhappy, he will not readily become happy again but he will need an abundance of great and noble things acquired after a long time by the exercise of virtuous action and by the restoration of external fortune. Deinde cum dicit: quid igitur prohibet etc., concludit suam sententiam de felicitate. Et dicit quod nihil prohibet dicere illum esse felicem qui operatur secundum virtutem perfectam, et habet exteriora bona sufficientia ad operationem virtutis, non quidem in aliquo parvo tempore, sed in vita perfecta, idest per longum tempus. Et hoc quidem sufficit ad hoc, quod aliquis possit dici felix in hac vita. 200. Then [1, c], when he says “What therefore,” he brings to an end his own thoughts on happiness. He says that nothing hinders us from calling that man happy who acts in accord with perfect virtue and has sufficient external goods for virtuous activity, not just for a short time but all during life or at least for a long period. This is enough for a man to be called happy in this life. Sed si volumus accipere felicitatem secundum optimum quod esse potest, sic apponendum est ad rationem felicitatis quod sit victurus sicut dictum est per totam suam vitam et finiturus, id est moriturus, secundum quod convenit rationi. Ratio autem quare videtur haec condicio apponenda est quia futurum ignotum est nobis. Ad rationem autem felicitatis, cum sit finis ultimus, videtur pertinere omne illud quod est perfectum et optimum. Et hoc secundo modo loquebatur Solon de felicitate. Et si ita est, ut dictum est, (beatos dicemus) illos de numero viventium in hac vita quibus existunt in praesenti et existent in futuro ea quae dicta sunt. 201. If we wish to understand happiness in the most perfect sense, possible, we must add to the definition of happiness that the happy man will live his whole life as we have indicated (129) and will complete it by dying in a manner befitting reason. It appears that this condition must be added because the future is unknown to us. Now all that is perfect and best seems to belong to the definition of happiness, since it is the ultimate end. In this second way Solon was speaking of happiness. If the case be as just described (200) we shall call those men happy in this life who have now and will have in the future the conditions we have laid down (177-186). Sed quia ista videntur non usquequaque attingere ad conditiones supra de felicitate positas, subdit quod tales dicimus beatos sicut homines, qui in hac vita mutabilitati subiecta non possunt perfectam beatitudinem habere. Et quia non est inane naturae desiderium, recte aestimari potest quod reservatur homini perfecta beatitudo post hanc vitam. Ultimo epilogat dicens, quod de his in tantum dictum sit. 202. But because these things seem not to measure up in all respects to the conditions required for happiness above (104-117), he adds that those we call happy are men subject to change in this life, who cannot attain perfect beatitude. Since a natural desire is not in vain, we can correctly judge that perfect beatitude is reserved for man after this life. He concludes with the remark that we have said enough on these points.
The Fortune of Friends and Happiness of the Dead
Chapter I I 2. HE SETTLES A DOUBT... ABOUT THE CHANGE OF FORTUNE IN REGARD TO FRIENDS. a. He compares the good, fortunes and misfortunes happening to friends with those which happen to man himself. i. He proposes that the things happening to one’s friends affect the man himself. — 203 τὰς δὲ τῶν ἀπογόνων τύχας καὶ τῶν φίλων ἁπάντων τὸ μὲν μηδοτιοῦν συμβάλλεσθαι λίαν ἄφιλον φαίνεται καὶ ταῖς δόξαις ἐναντίον· It seems quite foreign to the nature of friendship and contrary to the common opinion to say that changes in the fortunes of descendants and of friends have no influence on man’s happiness. ii. He shows what the things are and their nature. — 204-205 πολλῶν δὲ καὶ παντοίας ἐχόντων διαφορὰς τῶν συμβαινόντων, καὶ τῶν μὲν μᾶλλον συνικνουμένων τῶν δ' ἧττον, καθ' ἕκαστον μὲν διαιρεῖν μακρὸν καὶ ἀπέραντον φαίνεται, καθόλου δὲ λεχθὲν καὶ τύπῳ τάχ' ἂν ἱκανῶς ἔχοι. εἰ δή, καθάπερ καὶ τῶν περὶ αὑτὸν ἀτυχημάτων τὰ μὲν ἔχει τι βρῖθος καὶ ῥοπὴν πρὸς τὸν βίον τὰ δ' ἐλαφροτέροις ἔοικεν, οὕτω καὶ τὰ περὶ τοὺς φίλους ὁμοίως ἅπαντας, Many and vastly different things happen in fortune. Since some of these touch us closely and others remotely, it would be a long, even an endless, task to determine the extent of each. It will be enough to discuss the subject in broad and general terms. Some of the fortunes affecting a man himself are of sufficient importance to better the conditions of life while others are of lesser moment. We can affirm the same of the events which happen to friends generally. b. He compares the events that happen to the dead with what happens to the living. i. He shows there is a difference in regard to... the living and dead. — 206-208 διαφέρει δὲ τῶν παθῶν ἕκαστον περὶ ζῶντας ἢ τελευτήσαντας συμβαίνειν πολὺ μᾶλλον ἢ τὰ παράνομα καὶ δεινὰ προϋπάρχειν ἐν ταῖς τραγῳδίαις ἢ πράττεσθαι, συλλογιστέον δὴ καὶ ταύτην τὴν διαφοράν, It makes much more difference that an experience should happen to the living or the dead than that certain injustices and evils should be indicated as happening before the action of the drama or should be committed in the course of the drama. We must take this difference into consideration. ii. He inquires whether the lot of friends affect the dead. x. FIRST HE EXAMINES THE PROPOSITION. — 209 μᾶλλον δ' ἴσως τὸ διαπορεῖσθαι περὶ τοὺς κεκμηκότας εἴ τινος ἀγαθοῦ κοινωνοῦσιν ἢ τῶν ἀντικειμένων. ἔοικε γὰρ ἐκ τούτων εἰ καὶ διικνεῖται πρὸς αὐτοὺς ὁτιοῦν, εἴτ' ἀγαθὸν εἴτε τοὐναντίον, ἀφαυρόν τι καὶ μικρὸν ἢ ἁπλῶς ἢ ἐκείνοις εἶναι, εἰ δὲ μή, τοσοῦτόν γε καὶ τοιοῦτον ὥστε μὴ ποιεῖν εὐδαίμονας τοὺς μὴ ὄντας μηδὲ τοὺς ὄντας ἀφαιρεῖσθαι τὸ μακάριον. Perhaps we should rather inquire whether the dead share in any prosper at or adversity. It seems from what has been said that if any event either good or bad affects the dead, it will be fleeting and insignificant in itself or in its effect upon them. If this be the case, then the event will not be so great or of such a nature as to make happy those who are not happy, or to take away happiness from those who have it. y. HE BRINGS TO A CONCLUSION HIS CHIEF PROPOSAL. — 210-212 συμβάλλεσθαι μὲν οὖν τι φαίνονται τοῖς κεκμηκόσιν αἱ εὐπραξίαι τῶν φίλων, ὁμοίως δὲ καὶ αἱ δυσπραξίαι, τοιαῦτα δὲ καὶ τηλικαῦτα ὥστε μήτε τοὺς εὐδαίμονας μὴ εὐδαίμονας ποιεῖν μήτ' ἄλλο τῶν τοιούτων μηδέν. The good actions done by friends, therefore, do have some influence on the dead. Misfortunes too seem to affect them. But all these take place in such a way and to such an extent that they do not make the happy unhappy nor produce any other like changes.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Pronepotum autem fortunas et cetera. Postquam philosophus solvit principalem dubitationem, quae erat de transmutatione fortunae circa felicem, hic determinat dubitationem super inductam, scilicet de mutatione fortunae circa amicos. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo comparat fortunia et infortunia circa amicos contingentia his quae contingunt circa ipsum hominem. Secundo comparat ea quae contingunt circa mortuum his quae contingunt circa vivum, ibi: differt autem passionum et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo proponit quod ea quae circa amicos contingunt, redundant in ipsum hominem. Secundo ostendit quae et qualia, ibi multis autem et omnimodas et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod si aliquis vellet dicere quod fortunae bonae vel malae pronepotum vel quorumcumque posterorum et omnium amicorum nequaquam conferrent ad felicitatem hominis viventis seu mortui, videretur hoc esse inconveniens, duplici ratione. Primo quidem, quia hoc esset contra rationem amicitiae quae est quaedam unio amicorum, ita quod unus eorum reputat ea quae sunt alterius quasi sua. Secundo, quia hoc esset contrarium opinioni communi, quae non potest totaliter esse falsa. 203. After the Philosopher has solved the principal doubt concerning the change of fortune for the happy man, here  he settles a doubt raised above (183) about the change of fortune in regard to friends. On this point he does two things. First [2, a] he compares the good fortunes and misfortunes happening to friends with those which happen to man himself. Second [2, b], at “It makes much more etc.,” he compares the events that happen to the dead with what happens to the living. In regard to the first he does two things. Initially [a, i] he proposes that the things that happen to one’s friends affect the man himself. Second [a, ii], at “Many and vastly different etc.,” he shows what the things are and what their nature is. He affirms, first, that to say that the prosperity of great grandchildren or of descendants in general and of all friends would have no effect on the happiness of a man, living or dead, seems to be incongruous for two reasons. Primarily indeed, because it would be contrary to the nature of friendship, that is a union among friends to such an extent that one considers as his own what belongs to the other. Then too, because this would be contrary to the common opinion which cannot be entirely false. Deinde cum dicit: multis autem etc., ostendit quae et qualia amicorum accidentia conferant ad felicitatem amici. Et dicit quod, cum ea quae accidunt secundum fortunia bona vel mala sint multa et omnibus modis differentia, puta secundum speciem, secundum quantitatem, secundum tempus, et secundum alia huiusmodi, quorum quaedam magis redundant et quaedam minus, si aliquis vellet omnia singillatim determinare, quid scilicet redundet ex his in hominem et quid non, esset valde longum, immo potius infinitum, quia huiusmodi diversitas infinitis modis contingit. 204. Then [a, ii], at “Many vastly different things,” he shows what events may affect the happiness of a friend and the nature of these events. He says that many and vastly different things happen in prosperity or adversity, in kind, in quantity, in time, and in other respects. Some of them touch us closely and others remotely. If then we should wish to determine in every case which of them affect the man himself and which do not, the task would be a long one, in fact almost endless, because differences happen in an infinite variety of ways. Sed sufficit quod determinetur in universali et in typo, idest figuraliter, idest superficialiter vel similitudinarie, si scilicet dicatur quod fortunarum, quae sunt circa ipsum hominem, quaedam, scilicet magnae, habent aliquod pondus idest vim immutandi conditionem vitae humanae, et conferunt auxilium ad vitam felicem, quaedam autem sunt leviores, ex quibus non multum immutatur vita hominis; ita etiam contingit in his quae eveniunt circa quoscumque amicos; ita tamen quod magis redundant ea quae accidunt circa propinquiores, licet sint minora in quantitate. 205. With regard to the fortunes affecting a man himself it is sufficient to note in general, and so to speak, typically, by way of distinctive qualities or superficial likeness, that some acts of fortune are of sufficient importance and influence to change the condition of human life and do contribute to happiness. Others, however, are of lesser moment an help man’s life but little. The same thing takes place in the events that happen to any of our friends except that things of lesser moment happening to blood-relatives affect us more. Deinde cum dicit: differt autem passionum etc., ostendit ex quo accidentia amicorum redundant ad hominem; et hoc magis manifestum est quantum ad hominem dum vivit, qualiter circa hoc se habeat erga mortuum. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo ostendit quomodo differenter se habeat quantum ad hoc circa vivos et mortuos. Secundo inquirit utrum accidentia amicorum redundant ad mortuos, cum manifestum sit quod redundant ad vivos. Et hoc ibi: magis autem fortassis et cetera. Circa primum considerandum est quod mortui positi sunt extra vitam praesentem, cuius felicitatem Aristoteles hic inquirere intendit, ut ex praemissis patet. Attingunt autem mortui hanc vitam solum secundum quod remanent in memoriis hominum viventium. Et ideo hoc modo se habent mortui ad viventes secundum considerationem huius vitae, sicut se habent ea quae nunc actu contingunt ad ea quae olim fuerunt et nunc recitantur, puta bella Troiana vel aliquid huiusmodi. 206. Then [2, b], at “It makes much more difference,” he shows in what manner the changing fortunes of friends affect a person—it is rather evident how this touches a man while he lives, even how this may affect the dead. On this point he does two things. First [b, i] he shows in what way there is a difference in regard to this about the living and the dead. Second [b, ii] he inquires whether the lot of friends affect the dead, since it is clear they do affect the living. This he does at “Perhaps we should rather inquire.” On the first point we must consider that the dead are outside the present life, the happiness of which Aristotle here intends to inquire about, as appears from what has been previously said (180). They have contact with this life only as they remain in the memories of the living. The dead, therefore, may be compared in this way to the living—when we consider this life—as the events actually happening now are compared to those that took place long ago and are now recounted—for example, the Trojan war or any incident of this kind. Dicit ergo quod hoc, quod quaecumque passionum, idest accidentium fortuitorum, contingat circa vivos vel circa mortuos, multo magis differt quam quod aliqua iniusta, puta homicidia vel rapinae, et mala, idest infortunia quaecumque, praeexistant in tragoediis, idest a poetis recitentur ut olim existentia, vel quod nunc fiant. Quia in primo sumitur idem ex parte fortuiti eventus, et differentia ex parte personarum, quarum quaedam sunt actu in rebus humanis, quaedam autem sunt solum in memoria. In secundo autem e converso accipitur idem ex parte personarum, quae sunt actu in rebus humanis, sed attenditur differentia ex parte fortuitorum eventuum, quorum quidam sunt actu in rebus humanis, quidam autem solum secundum commemorativam recitationem. Et quia felicitas ad personas pertinet magis, quam ad res exterius contingentes, ideo philosophus dicit quod prima differentia, quantum pertinet ad propositum, scilicet ad mutationem felicitatis maior est, quam secunda. Et ex isto simili inducto de differentia eventuum, dicit esse syllogizandum differentiam in proposito. 207. He then remarks that it makes a great difference whether a particular misfortune befalls men while they are living or after hey are dead—a far greater difference than it makes in a tragedy whether certain evil deeds like murder, robbery, or any other kind of misfortune be recounted by the playwrights as preceding the action of the drama or are performed in the course of it. The reason is that in the first case (the living and the dead) the same misfortunes affect them but in a different way because of their different states, for some are actually engaged in human affairs, but some of the trials befalling them are recounted as here and now taking place, while others as having previously occurred. Because happiness refers rather to persons than to things happening externally, the Philosopher says that the first difference (which refers to the living and the dead)—precisely as it pertains to the point at issue, namely, a change of happiness—is of more importance than the second (which refers to actions in tragedies). And by reason of a similar inference concerning the difference of events, he says that we must consider the difference in our question. Manifestum est enim quod praeterita mala recitata, etsi quodammodo pertineant ad hominem audientem, qui aliquo modo ad ea afficitur, non tamen ita quod immutent conditionem ipsius, unde multo minus fortunia vel infortunia immutant conditionem mortui. Et hoc quidem induxit philosophus quasi solvens rationem supra positam, quae concludebat quod si aliquid redundat ad vivos non sentientes, quod redundet etiam ad mortuos. 208. Now it is clear that even though a recitation of past evils in a way influences the the hearer who is in some measure affected by them, it does not do so to the extent of changing his condition. Consequently, much less do fortunes change the condition of the dead. This is brought out by the Philosopher to clear up, as it were, the statement made above (184), which concluded that if something affects men who are not conscious, it affects also the dead. Deinde cum dicit: magis autem fortassis etc., inquirit ulterius utrum aliquo modo redundent ad mortuos, quae contingunt circa amicos. Et primo inquirit propositum. Secundo concludit principale intentum, ibi, conferre quidem igitur et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod magis videtur esse inquirendum circa eos qui mortui sunt, si aliquo modo communicant vel bonis vel malis quae accidunt in hac vita: quia quod non immutentur ex eis a felicitate in miseriam vel e converso, satis videtur esse manifestum. Quia si aliquid ex his quae hic aguntur ad eos redundat, sive bonum sive malum, erit aliquid fragile et parum vel simpliciter vel quantum ad ipsos. Si autem hoc ita est, non erit tantum et tale ut faciat felices eos qui non sunt, neque his qui sunt auferat beatitudinem. Dictum est enim, quod parva accidentia non faciunt immutationem vitae, si ergo ex his quae aguntur parvum aliquid redundat ad mortuos, sequitur quod ex hoc eorum conditio circa felicitatem non immutetur. 209. Then [b, ii], at “Perhaps we should rather inquire,” he inquires last whether things happening to friends affect the dead in some way. First [ii, x] he examines the proposition; and second [ii, y], he brings to a conclusion his chief proposal at “Therefore the good actions.” He says first that we should rather inquire whether the dead in any way share in the prosperity and adversity that take place in this life. That a man is not changed from happiness to unhappiness or the other way round seems sufficiently established. The reason is that if an event taking place here, either good or bad, affects the dead, it will be fleeting and insignificant in itself or in its effect on them. But if this is the case, it will not be so great or of such a nature as to make them happy who are not happy, nor to take away happiness from them who have it. It has been said already (194) that trifling happenings do not cause a change in life. If then an insignificant event, among the things that happen, affects the dead, it follows that their condition of happiness will not be changed. Deinde cum dicit: conferre quidem igitur etc., concludit suam sententiam. Et dicit, quod bona amicorum, quae agunt vel quae eis accidunt, conferre videntur aliquid mortuis, et similiter infortunia in eos redundare; tamen sub tali modo, et tanta quantitate, ut neque felices faciant non felices, neque non felices faciant felices, neque etiam transmutent eos secundum aliquid talium, puta secundum sapientiam et virtutem, vel aliquid huiusmodi. Potest autem esse constructio suspensiva ab illo loco si autem non tantum et tale etc.: et tunc consequens condicionalis erit: conferre quidem igitur etc., et superabundabit illativa coniunctio. 210. Then [ii, y], at “Therefore the good actions,” he concludes his opinion. He says that the good actions done by friends or the evil befalling them seem to have some influence on the dead, and misfortunes too seem to affect them. But these take place in such a manner and to such an extent that they do not make the happy unhappy or the unhappy happy, nor do they change the dead in such things as wisdom or virtue or the like. However, the construction can be conditioned by the words “If this be the case.” Then the statement “do have some influence” will be properly conditional, and the conjunctive particle will be superfluous. Videtur autem secundum intentionem Aristotelis ea quae hic dicuntur esse intelligenda de mortuis, non secundum quod sunt in seipsis, sed secundum quod vivunt in memoriis hominum. Sic enim videntur redundare in eos ea quae amicis eorum contingunt post mortem, prout ex hoc redditur eorum memoria et gloria magis celebris vel magis obscura. Sed hoc quidem dicit esse fragile quiddam, quia nihil est fragilius eo quod in sola opinione hominum consistit. Dicit autem esse parvum quiddam et maxime quoad ipsos, quia non pertinet ad eos nisi secundum quod sunt in memoriis hominum. 211. It seems that Aristotle intends that the things said here are to be understood of the dead not as they are in themselves but as they live in the memory of men. In this way what happens to their friends after death seems to affect the dead so that their memory and glory become more distinct and more obscure. But this, he says, is indeed a fleeting thing because nothing is more fleeting than what exists only in the opinion of men. He says also that it is an insignificant thing especially for he dead themselves because it belongs to them only to the extent they are remembered by men. Quaerere autem, utrum homines post mortem aliqualiter vivant secundum animam, et utrum cognoscant ea quae hic aguntur, aut si ex his aliquo modo immutantur, non pertinet ad propositum, cum philosophus hic agat de felicitate praesentis vitae, sicut ex supradictis patet. Et ideo huiusmodi quaestiones, quae longa discussione indigerent, hic praetermittendae sunt, ne in hac scientia quae est operativa, plures sermones extra opera fiant, quod supra philosophus reprobavit. Alibi autem haec plenius disseruimus. 212. The questions, however, whether the souls of men survive in some fashion after death and whether they are aware of or are changed in any way by what occurs in this life do not pertain to our purpose since the Philosopher here is treating of the happiness of the present life, as is evident from what was said above (206). Consequently inquiries of this kind, which need to be considered at some length, must be omitted at this point lest in this science which is practical many discussions outside its scope be carried on—a procedure that the Philosopher condemned (136). Elsewhere we have treated these subjects more fully.
Happiness, A Good Deserving Honor
Chapter 12 II. HE INQUIRES ABOUT A CERTAIN PROPERTY OF HAPPINESS. A. He asks a question. — 213-214 διωρισμένων δὲ τούτων ἐπισκεψώμεθα περὶ τῆς εὐδαιμονίας πότερα τῶν ἐπαινετῶν ἐστὶν ἢ μᾶλλον τῶν τιμίων· δῆλον γὰρ ὅτι τῶν γε δυνάμεων οὐκ ἔστιν. Having settled these matters we must investigate whether happiness is one of the goods to be praised or, more properly, to be honored. It is obviously not in the genius of potentiality. B. He ascertains the truth. A’ He shows that happiness is of the number of goods to be honored. 1. HE SHOWS TO WHOM PRAISE IS GIVEN. a. He presents his proposition. — 215 φαίνεται δὴ πᾶν τὸ ἐπαινετὸν τῷ ποιόν τι εἶναι καὶ πρός τι πῶς ἔχειν ἐπαινεῖσθαι· Now a thing that is praiseworthy has a certain proportion in itself and some sort of relation to another. b. He proves his proposition. i. From human praises. — 216-217 τὸν γὰρ δίκαιον καὶ τὸν ἀνδρεῖον καὶ ὅλως τὸν ἀγαθόν τε καὶ τὴν ἀρετὴν ἐπαινοῦμεν διὰ τὰς πράξεις καὶ τὰ ἔργα, καὶ τὸν ἰσχυρὸν δὲ καὶ τὸν δρομικὸν καὶ τῶν ἄλλων ἕκαστον τῷ ποιόν τινα πεφυκέναι καὶ ἔχειν πως πρὸς ἀγαθόν τι καὶ σπουδαῖον. Thus we generally praise the just, the brave, and the good man and even virtue itself because of the works and actions. We raise also the physically strong, the swift, and the like as possessing a certain natural ability, and as ordered in some way to a thing good in itself and desirable. ii. From divine praises. — 218 δῆλον δὲ τοῦτο καὶ ἐκ τῶν περὶ τοὺς θεοὺς ἐπαίνων· γελοῖοι γὰρ φαίνονται πρὸς ἡμᾶς ἀναφερόμενοι, τοῦτο δὲ συμβαίνει διὰ τὸ γίνεσθαι τοὺς ἐπαίνους δι' ἀναφορᾶς, ὥσπερ εἴπομεν. Our point is obvious too from the praises of the gods, for such praises would be ridiculous if judged by our standard. This happens because praises are given by reason of relation to another, as we have indicated. 2. HE CONCLUDES THAT SOMETHING BETTER THAN PRAISE IS GIVEN TO THE BEST. a. He puts the conclusion this way. — 219 εἰ δ' ἐστὶν ὁ ἔπαινος τῶν τοιούτων, δῆλον ὅτι τῶν ἀρίστων οὐκ ἔστιν ἔπαινος, ἀλλὰ μεῖζόν τι καὶ βέλτιον, If praise belongs to things of this kind, clearly something greater and better than praise is given to the best. b. He proves the previous conclusion from what is commonly held. i. In regard to the things of which there is something better than praise. x. HE FIRST PRESENTS WHAT SEEMS TO BE COMMONLY HELD. — 220 καθάπερ καὶ φαίνεται· τούς τε γὰρ θεοὺς μακαρίζομεν καὶ εὐδαιμονίζομεν καὶ τῶν ἀνδρῶν τοὺς θειοτάτους [μακαρίζομεν]. ὁμοίως δὲ καὶ τῶν ἀγαθῶν· οὐδεὶς γὰρ τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν ἐπαινεῖ καθάπερ τὸ δίκαιον, ἀλλ' ὡς θειότερόν τι καὶ βέλτιον μακαρίζει. This seems to be true, for we call gods blessed and happy, as we do the most godlike among men. We speak in a similar way of goods, for no one praises happiness as he praises a just man, but he ascribes to happiness something better and more divine, namely, blessedness. y. SECOND, WHAT SEEMED SO TO EUDOXUS. — 221 δοκεῖ δὲ καὶ Εὔδοξος καλῶς συνηγορῆσαι περὶ τῶν ἀριστείων τῇ ἡδονῇ· τὸ γὰρ μὴ ἐπαινεῖσθαι τῶν ἀγαθῶν οὖσαν μηνύειν ᾤετο ὅτι κρεῖττόν ἐστι τῶν ἐπαινετῶν, τοιοῦτον δ' εἶναι τὸν θεὸν καὶ τἀγαθόν· πρὸς ταῦτα γὰρ καὶ τἆλλα ἀναφέρεσθαι. Apparently Eudoxus put pleasure in the first place for a good reason. He thought that this is intimated from the fact that pleasure is a good not praised but is better than things praised, such as God and any good in itself. To things of this kind, other things are referred. ii. In regard to the things of which there is praise. — 222 ὁ μὲν γὰρ ἔπαινος τῆς ἀρετῆς· πρακτικοὶ γὰρ τῶν καλῶν ἀπὸ ταύτης· τὰ δ' ἐγκώμια τῶν ἔργων ὁμοίως καὶ τῶν σωματικῶν καὶ τῶν ψυχικῶν. ἀλλὰ ταῦτα μὲν ἴσως οἰκειότερον ἐξακριβοῦν τοῖς περὶ τὰ ἐγκώμια πεπονημένοις· ἡμῖν δὲ δῆλον ἐκ τῶν εἰρημένων ὅτι ἐστὶν ἡ εὐδαιμονία τῶν τιμίων καὶ τελείων. Praise surely belongs to virtue since doers of good works are praised for activity of body and of soul in accord with virtue. But perhaps a consideration of this subject more properly belongs to those who labor over the study of laudatory statements. It is obvious now to us from our discussion that happiness is a perfect good and one to be honored. B’ He shows the same thing from the fact that happiness has the nature of a principle. — 223 ἔοικε δ' οὕτως ἔχειν καὶ διὰ τὸ εἶναι ἀρχή· ταύτης γὰρ χάριν τὰ λοιπὰ πάντα πάντες πράττομεν, τὴν ἀρχὴν δὲ καὶ τὸ αἴτιον τῶν ἀγαθῶν τίμιόν τι καὶ θεῖον τίθεμεν. This appears to be true also from the nature of a principle. Now men do all that they do for the sake of happiness. But we look upon such a principle and cause of good as something divine and a thing to be honored.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Determinatis autem his et cetera. Postquam philosophus ostendit quid est felicitas, hic inquirit de quadam proprietate felicitatis. Et primo movet quaestionem. Secundo determinat veritatem, ibi: videtur autem omne laudabile et cetera. Dicit ergo quod post determinationem praedictorum necesse est perscrutari utrum felicitas sit de numero bonorum laudabilium vel magis de numero bonorum honorabilium. Et quod necesse sit felicitatem contineri sub altero genere horum bonorum, probat per hoc quod felicitas non est de genere potentiarum. Non enim aliquis laudatur vel honoratur ex eo solum quod habet potentiam ad bonum, sed ex eo quod aliqualiter est ad bonum dispositus. 213. After the Philosopher has shown what happiness is, here [II] he inquires about a certain property of happiness. First [II, A] he asks a question, and second [II, B], he ascertains the truth, at “Now a thing that is praiseworthy etc.” He says that after determining the preceding matters, it is necessary to examine whether happiness is of the number of goods to be honored or to be praised. He proves that happiness must be contained under the one or the other kind of good by the fact that happiness is not in the genus of potentiality. A man is not praised or honored because he has the potentiality to good but because he is somehow disposed to good. Ad huius autem quaestionis evidentiam considerandum, quod honor et laus dupliciter differunt. Primo quidem ex parte eius in quo consistit honor vel laus. Sic enim honor in plus se habet quam laus. Honor enim importat quoddam testimonium manifestans excellentiam alicuius, sive hoc fiat per verba sive per facta, utpote cum aliquis genuflectit alteri vel assurgit ei. Sed laus consistit solum in verbis. Secundo differunt quantum ad id cui exhibetur laus et honor. Utrumque enim exhibetur alicui excellentiae. Est autem duplex excellentia: una quidem absoluta et secundum hoc debetur ei honor; alia autem est excellentia in ordine ad aliquem finem, et sic debetur ei laus. 214. To have an understanding of this question, we must consider that honor and praise differ in a twofold manner. First on the part of that in which honor or praise consists. In this respect honor is more extensive than praise. Honor signifies testimony manifesting a person’s excellence either by word or by deed, as when one genuflects to another or rises for him. But praise consists only in words. Second, praise and honor differ in regard to that for which they are given, for both are given on account of some excellence. Now there are two kinds of excellence. One is absolute and in this sense honor is due to it. But the other is an excellence in relation to some end, and in this sense praise is due. Deinde cum dicit: videtur autem omne laudabile etc., determinat motam quaestionem. Et primo ostendit felicitatem esse bonorum honorabilium, ex hoc quod est quiddam perfectum et optimum; in secunda parte ex hoc, quod habet rationem principii, ibi, videtur autem ita habere et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ostendit qualium sit laus. Secundo concludit quod optimorum non est laus, sed aliquid melius. Circa primum duo facit. Primo proponit quod intendit. Secundo manifestat propositum, ibi, iustum enim et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod omne quod laudatur, videtur esse laudabile ex duobus simul: ex hoc scilicet quod in se habet aliqualem dispositionem, et ex hoc quod habet aliqualem habitudinem ad aliquid aliud. 215. Then [II, B], at “Now a thing that is,” he answers the question. First [B, A’] he shows that happiness is of the number of goods to be honored because it is a thing perfect and best. In the second place [B, B] he shows the same thing from the fact that happiness has the nature of a principle, at “This appears to be true also etc.” On the first point he does two things. Initially [A’, I] he shows to whom praise is given. Second [A’, 2] he concludes that something better than praise is given to the best, at “If praise belongs etc.” In regard to the initial point he does two things. First [1, a] he presents his proposition. Second [1, b] he presents his proposition. Second [1, b] he proves the proposition at “Thus we generally praise the just etc.” He says first that everything that is praised seems to be praiseworthy for two reasons simultaneously: (1) because it has a certain kind of disposition in itself and (2) because it has a relation of some sort to another. Deinde cum dicit iustum enim et virilem etc., manifestat propositum. Et primo ex laudibus humanis. Secundo ex laudibus divinis, ibi, manifestum autem est hoc et ex his et cetera. Circa primum considerandum est, quod homo laudatur et propter virtutem animi, et propter virtutem corporis. Secundum virtutem autem animi laudatur et ipse homo habens virtutem animi, puta iustus et virilis et communiter bonus secundum quamcumque virtutem. Et etiam laudatur ipsa virtus; et hoc propter aliquid aliud, scilicet propter opera et actus; ex hoc enim laudatur virtuosus et ipsa virtus, inquantum ordinatur ad exequendum opus virtutis. Secundum vero virtutem corporis laudatur aliquis, quia est fortis ad pugnandum et agilis ad currendum et de aliis similibus, ex hoc, quod homo aliqualiter ordinatur ad aliquid quod est bonum in se et studiosum quasi studio dignum. 216. Then [1, b], at “Thus we generally praise,” he proves the proposition first [1, b, i] from human praises and second [1, b, ii] from divine praises at “Our point is obvious too from the praises of the gods.” In regard to the first we must consider that a man is praised both because of virtue of mind and because of power or strength of body. By reason of virtue of mind, a man (for instance, one who is just or brave or virtuous in any way) is praised for having virtue. The virtue also is praised, and this is because of something else, namely, virtuous works and actions. The virtuous man and virtue itself then are praised insofar as they are ordered to do the work of virtue. Second, a man is praised by reason of power or strength of body because he is strong in fighting, swift in running, and so forth. This happens because the athlete is in a way ordered to something good in itself and desirable as worthy of achievement. Et est attendenda differentia inter virtutes animi et corporis, nam ad laudem virtutis animae sufficit quod aliquis bene se habeat ad proprium actum virtutis. Quia bonum hominis consistit in ipso actu virtutis, sed in virtutibus corporalibus non sufficit quod aliquis bene se habeat ad actum illius virtutis, puta ad currendum vel luctandum. In his enim non consistit bonum hominis. Potest enim aliquis currere vel luctare vel pugnare et propter bonum, et propter malum. Et ideo loquens de laude virtutum animae, dixit quod laudantur propter opera et actus. Sed loquens de virtutibus corporalibus, determinavit, quod laudantur in ordine ad aliquod bonum et studiosum. 217. We must pay attention to the difference between virtues or powers of mind and body. It is sufficient in the praise of virtue of soul that a man be well disposed to the proper act of the virtue. The reason is that the good of man consists in the very act of virtue, for instance, for running or for wrestling. Human goodness does not consist in such things, since a man can run, wrestle, or fight for both as good and an evil purpose. Consequently, when speaking of the praises of the virtues of the soul he said they are praised because of works and actions (that flow from them). But in speaking of the powers of the body he indicated that they are praised in relation to something else. Deinde cum dicit manifestum autem est hoc etc., manifestat quod dixerat per laudes divinas. Si enim aliquid esset laudabile absolute, et non secundum habitudinem ad aliquid aliud, sequeretur quod idem in omnibus esset laudabile. Hoc autem manifeste falsum apparet si quis consideret laudes quibus laudamus substantias separatas quas deos nominat. Si quis enim laudes eorum referret ad ea quae in hominibus laudantur, derisibile videretur; puta si quis laudaret Deum de hoc quod non vincatur a concupiscentia seu timore. Et hoc ideo contingit, quia laudes sunt per relationem ad aliquid, ut dictum est. 218. Then [1, b, ii], at “Our point is obvious too,” he explains what is meant by divine praises. If something be praiseworthy absolutely and not as related to some other thing, it follows that the thing is praiseworthy in all circumstances. But this is clearly false in the case of praises given to separated substances that he calls gods. It would seem ridiculous to praise them for things that are praised in men, for instance, because they are not overcome by concupiscence or fear. This is so because praises are given by reason of a relation to something else, as has been pointed out (214). Deinde cum dicit: si autem est laus talium etc., ex praemissis concludit propositum. Et primo ponit conclusionem in hunc modum. Laus est eorum quorum bonitas consideratur in ordine ad aliquid aliud. Sed optima non ordinantur ad aliquid aliud, quinimmo alia ordinantur in ipsa. Ergo optimorum non est laus, sed aliquid melius laude; sicut etiam in speculativis principiorum non est scientia, sed aliquid scientia altius, scilicet intellectus. Scientia vero est conclusionum quae cognoscuntur propter principia. Et similiter laus est eorum quorum bonitas est propter alia. Honor autem quasi aliquid melius laude est eorum ad quae alia ordinantur. 219. Then [A’, 2], at “If praise,” he concludes his proposition from what has been said. First [2, a] he puts the conclusion this way. Praise is given to the things whose goodness is considered in relation to something else. But the best things are not ordered to anything else but rather other things are ordered to them. Therefore, something better than praise is given to the best. In a somewhat similar way, there is science for the study of speculative principles, but something higher than science, understanding. Science is concerned with conclusions which are known by means of principles. Likewise, praise is concerned with things whose goodness is for the sake of others. But honor, a thing better than praise, is concerned with things to which other things are ordered. Secundo ibi: quemadmodum videtur etc., manifestat conclusionem praemissam per ea quae communiter dicuntur. Et primo quantum ad ea quorum est aliquid melius laude. Secundo quantum ad ea quorum est laus, ibi: laus quidem enim et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo inducit ad propositum manifestandum id quod communiter videtur. Secundo id quod visum fuit Eudoxo, ibi, videtur autem et Eudoxus et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod optimorum esse aliquid melius laude videtur communiter omnibus. Quod manifestum est ex hoc quod diis quasi aliquid melius laude attribuentes, dicimus eos beatos et felices; et similiter optimos virorum, in quibus apparet quaedam divina similitudo propter eorum excellentiam. Et sicut optimis personarum attribuimus aliquid melius laude, ita etiam et optimis de numero bonorum, sicut felicitati; nullus enim laudat felicitatem per modum quo laudat hominem iustum vel virtuosum, sed attribuit ei aliquid maius, dum dicimus eam esse beatitudinem. 220. Second [2, b], at “This seems to be true,” he proves the previous conclusion from what is commonly held. First [2, b, i] in regard to the things of which there is something better than praise; and second [2, b, ii] in regard to the things of which there is praise at “Praise surely belongs etc.” In regard to the first he does two things. To prove his proposition he first [i, x] presents what seems to be commonly held and second [ i, y] what seemed so to Eudoxus at “Apparently Eudoxus.” He says first that it seems commonly held that there is something better than praise for the best. This is made clear from the fact that those ascribing to the gods as it were something better than praise call them blessed and happy. They say the same, too, of the best among men who have a certain likeness to the gods by reason of excellence. As we ascribe something better than praise to the best among men, so also to the best of goods like happiness. No one praises happiness in the way he praises a just or virtuous man. Something better is ascribed to happiness when we call it blessedness. Deinde cum dicit: videtur autem et Eudoxus etc., inducit ad idem dictum Eudoxi. Qui in voluptate constituebat primitias bonorum, ponens scilicet voluptatem esse summum bonum. Et hoc denunciari existimat, quod cum sit de numero bonorum, non tamen aliquis laudatur propter voluptatem, eo quod est aliquid melius laudabilibus. Et tale est Deus et quicquid aliud est per se bonum. Quia ad huiusmodi quae sunt per se bona etiam alia referuntur, quorum scilicet bonitas laudatur in hoc quod se aliqualiter habent ad ea quae sunt per se bona. 221. Then [i, y], at “Apparently Eudoxus” he reduces the saying of Eudoxus to the same argument. Now Eudoxus called pleasure the first fruits of good, saying that pleasure is the supreme good. He thinks this is intimated from the following. Pleasure is a good that is not praised because in itself it is something better than the things that are praised. No one indeed is praised on account of pleasure, for instance, God and any other good in itself. The reason is that things whose goodness is praised are referred to things good in themselves. Things that are praised are praised precisely because they are somehow related to the things that are good in themselves. Deinde cum dicit: laus quidem enim etc., manifestat quod dixerat quantum ad ea quorum est laus. Et dicit quod laus est virtutis per quam sumus operatores bonorum. Laudatur enim aliquis propter actus corporis vel animae, ut supra dictum est. Sed considerare ea de quibus consueverunt homines laudari magis proprie pertinet ad rhetores, quorum studium insudat circa laudes. Pertinet enim hoc ad demonstrativum genus causarum, quod est unum de tribus, quae cadunt sub consideratione rhetoricae ut patet per philosophum in I rhetoricae et per Tullium in rhetorica sua. Sed quantum ad nos manifeste apparet ex praedictis; quod felicitas est de numero honorabilium, eo quod est quoddam bonum perfectum. 222. Then [2, b, ii], at “Praise surely,” he proves what he said in respect of the things to which praise is given. He says that praise belongs to virtue which makes us doers of good works, for a person is praised because of activity of body or soul as was just mentioned (216-217). But a consideration of the words used by men in bestowing compliments pertains more properly to rhetoricians who labor over the study of laudatory statements. It belongs to the kind of subject that deals with praise or dispraise (demonstrativum genus)—one of the three falling under the study of rhetoric, as is clear from the Philosopher in the first book of the Rhetoric (Ch. 3, 1358 b 21-1359 a 5) and from Tully (Cicero) in his Rhetoric (De Oratore, Bk. II, Ch. x, xi). So far as we are concerned it is obvious from the above (220) that happiness is of the number of goods to be honored because it is a perfect good. Deinde cum dicit: videtur autem ita habere etc., probat propositum ex ratione principii. Illud enim quod est principium et causa bonorum, ponimus honorabile, quasi quiddam divinum existens. Nam Deus est primum principium omnis boni. Sed felicitas est principium omnium bonorum humanorum, quia propter ipsam omnes homines operantur omnia quae agunt. Finis autem in operabilibus et appetibilibus habet rationem principii, quia ex fine sumitur ratio eorum quae sunt ad finem. Unde sequitur quod felicitas sit quoddam bonum honorabile. 223. Then [B, B’], at “This appears to be true also,” he proves his proposition from the nature of a principle. We look upon the principle and the cause of goods as a thing to be honored, for it is as it were something divine, since God is the first principle of all good. But happiness is the principle of all human good because men do all that they do by reason of happiness. Now the end in things to be done and things to be desired has the nature of a principle because the nature of the means is understood from the end. Hence it follows that happiness is a good to be honored.
Happiness and Virtue
Chapter 13 I. HE PREMISES CERTAIN THINGS NECESSARY FOR THE STUDY OF VIRTUE. A. He shows that it pertains to this science to study virtue. A’ First by a reason taken from the doctrine on happiness. — 224 ἐπεὶ δ' ἐστὶν ἡ εὐδαιμονία ψυχῆς ἐνέργειά τις κατ' ἀρετὴν τελείαν, περὶ ἀρετῆς ἐπισκεπτέον ἂν εἴη· τάχα γὰρ οὕτως ἂν βέλτιον καὶ περὶ τῆς εὐδαιμονίας θεωρήσαιμεν. If then happiness is a kind of operation according to perfect virtue, we must investigate the question of virtue. In this way we shall perhaps make a more profound study of happiness. B’ Second... from the particular nature of this science. — 225 δοκεῖ δὲ καὶ ὁ κατ' ἀλήθειαν πολιτικὸς περὶ ταύτην μάλιστα πεπονῆσθαι· βούλεται γὰρ τοὺς πολίτας ἀγαθοὺς ποιεῖν καὶ τῶν νόμων ὑπηκόους. παράδειγμα δὲ τούτων ἔχομεν τοὺς Κρητῶν καὶ Λακεδαιμονίων νομοθέτας, καὶ εἴ τινες ἕτεροι τοιοῦτοι γεγένηνται. εἰ δὲ τῆς πολιτικῆς ἐστὶν ἡ σκέψις αὕτη, δῆλον ὅτι γίνοιτ' ἂν ἡ ζήτησις κατὰ τὴν ἐξ ἀρχῆς προαίρεσιν. Now political science really seems to be concerned especially with the attainment of virtue. Its object is to produce good citizens obedient to the laws, as is exemplified by the lawmakers of the Cretes and the Spartans, and others like them. If this investigation belongs to political science, the study will be Obviously conducted according to the disposition we made in the beginning. B. He assumes certain things we must know about the parts of the soul. A’ He shows it is necessary that such things be discussed in this science. 1. HE SHOWS THAT IT IS NECESSARY TO CONSIDER CERTAIN QUESTIONS ABOUT THE PARTS OF THE SOUL. — 226-227 περὶ ἀρετῆς δὲ ἐπισκεπτέον ἀνθρωπίνης δῆλον ὅτι· καὶ γὰρ τἀγαθὸν ἀνθρώπινον ἐζητοῦμεν καὶ τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν ἀνθρωπίνην. ἀρετὴν δὲ λέγομεν ἀνθρωπίνην οὐ τὴν τοῦ σώματος ἀλλὰ τὴν τῆς ψυχῆς· καὶ τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν δὲ ψυχῆς ἐνέργειαν λέγομεν. εἰ δὲ ταῦθ' οὕτως ἔχει, δῆλον ὅτι δεῖ τὸν πολιτικὸν εἰδέναι πως τὰ περὶ ψυχῆς, ὥσπερ καὶ τὸν ὀφθαλμοὺς θεραπεύσοντα καὶ πᾶν τὸ σῶμα, καὶ μᾶλλον ὅσῳ τιμιωτέρα καὶ βελτίων ἡ πολιτικὴ τῆς ἰατρικῆς· τῶν δ' ἰατρῶν οἱ χαρίεντες πολλὰ πραγματεύονται περὶ τὴν τοῦ σώματος γνῶσιν. θεωρητέον δὴ καὶ τῷ πολιτικῷ περὶ ψυχῆς, The virtue we are investigating then will be human virtue, for we were seeking human good and human happiness. Now we call that virtue human which is proper not to the body but to the soul. Besides, we say that happiness is an activity of the soul. Since this is so, obviously the statesman must know to some extent the things pertaining to the soul, as he who is to heal the eyes or the whole body should know something about physiology. In fact the knowledge of the statesman should be greater insofar as political science is nobler and more important than medicine. But skillful physicians make it their business to know much about the body. Therefore, the statesman must study the soul. 2. HE SHOWS HOW WE MUST CONSIDER THESE QUESTIONS. — 228 θεωρητέον δὲ τούτων χάριν, καὶ ἐφ' ὅσον ἱκανῶς ἔχει πρὸς τὰ ζητούμενα· τὸ γὰρ ἐπὶ πλεῖον ἐξακριβοῦν ἐργωδέστερον ἴσως ἐστὶ τῶν προκειμένων. The soul must be studied for the sake of the objects investigated and to the extent that suffices for them. To make a more exhaustive study would be a greater task than the subject requires. B’ He takes them up. I. HE DIVIDES THE PARTS OF THE SOUL. a. He gives the division. — 229 λέγεται δὲ περὶ αὐτῆς καὶ ἐν τοῖς ἐξωτερικοῖς λόγοις ἀρκούντως ἔνια, καὶ χρηστέον αὐτοῖς· οἷον τὸ μὲν ἄλογον αὐτῆς εἶναι, τὸ δὲ λόγον ἔχον. Certain things about the soul are adequately treated in extraneous discourses. We should use these, for instance, the distinction of the soul into irrational and rational. b. He says that a certain question must be left unanswered. — 230 ταῦτα δὲ πότερον διώρισται καθάπερ τὰ τοῦ σώματος μόρια καὶ πᾶν τὸ μεριστόν, ἢ τῷ λόγῳ δύο ἐστὶν ἀχώριστα πεφυκότα καθάπερ ἐν τῇ περιφερείᾳ τὸ κυρτὸν καὶ τὸ κοῖλον, οὐθὲν διαφέρει πρὸς τὸ παρόν. But Whether the parts are distinct as particles of a body or anything physically divisible, or whether the parts are indivisible in nature and distinguishable according to reason alone, as the convex and concave of the circumference of a circle, is irrelevant to the present question.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Si autem est felicitas et cetera. Postquam philosophus determinavit de felicitate, hic incipit determinare de virtute. Et primo praemittit quaedam quae exiguntur ad considerationem virtutis. Secundo incipit determinare de virtute in principio secundi libri, ibi, duplici autem virtute existente et cetera. Circa primum tria facit. Primo ostendit quod ad hanc scientiam pertineat de virtute considerare. Secundo assumit quaedam quae oportet cognoscere de partibus animae, ibi: de virtute autem perscrutandum etc.; tertio secundum divisionem partium animae dividit virtutem, ibi, determinatur autem virtus et cetera. Primum ostendit dupliciter. Primo quidem ratione assumpta ex parte felicitatis. Dictum est enim supra, quod felicitas est operatio quaedam secundum virtutem perfectam. Et sic per cognitionem virtutis melius poterimus de felicitate considerare. Unde et in X libro, determinato de omnibus virtutibus complet tractatum de felicitate. Cum igitur haec scientia principaliter quaerat bonum humanum quod est felicitas, consequens est quod ad hanc scientiam pertineat de virtute scrutari. 224. After the Philosopher has finished the treatise on happiness, he begins the consideration of virtue. First [I] he premises certain things necessary for the study of virtue. Second (B. 1103 a 14) he begins to define virtue in the beginning of the second book at “Virtue is of two kinds etc.” [Lect. 1]. In regard to the first he does three things. First [I, A] he shows that it pertains to this science to study virtue. Second [I, B], at “The virtues we are etc.,” he assumes certain things we must know about the parts of the soul. Third [Lect. 20; C], at “Virtue is divided etc.” (B. 1103 a 4), he divides virtue according to the division of the parts of the soul. He proves the initial point in two ways. First [A, A’] by a reason taken from the doctrine on happiness. It was pointed out previously (128, 130, 150, 160, 164, 175, 187, 190) that happiness is an action according to perfect virtue. Hence we can study happiness better by means of knowledge of virtue. In keeping with this, he completes the treatise on happiness when he finishes the study of all the virtues in the tenth book (1953-2180). Since then the principal object of this science is the good of man, which is happiness, an inquiry into virtue fittingly comes within the scope of this science. Secundo ibi: videtur autem et secundum veritatem etc., probat propositum ex propria ratione huius scientiae. Civilis enim scientia secundum rei veritatem maxime videtur studere et laborare circa virtutem. Intendit enim cives bonos facere et legibus obedientes, sicut patet per legislatores Cretensium et Lacedaemoniorum, qui habebant civilitatem optime ordinatam, vel si qui alii sunt similes leges ponentes ad faciendum homines virtuosos. Sed consideratio praesentis scientiae ad politicam pertinet, quia in hac scientia traduntur principia politicae. Unde manifestum est quod quaestio de virtute fiet conveniens huic scientiae, secundum id quod in prooemio elegimus politicam prae omnibus aliis disciplinis, inquirentem ultimum finem humanorum. 225. Second [A, B] at “Now political science,” he proves the proposition from the particular nature of this science. Political science seems really to make a special study of virtue and its attainment. Indeed the object of political science is to produce good citizens obedient to the laws (as is evident from the lawmakers of the Cretes and the Spartans who had model states, and from others framing similar laws to make men virtuous). But the study of the present science is connected with political science because its principles are given here. Obviously then a consideration of virtue will be suitable to this science. Accordingly in the introduction (25-31) we placed political science, which investigates the ultimate end of human actions, above all other sciences. Deinde cum dicit: de virtute autem etc., assumit quaedam de partibus animae necessaria ad cognitionem virtutum. Et circa hoc duo facit. Primo ostendit quod necessarium est huiusmodi assumi in hac scientia. Secundo assumit ea, ibi, dicuntur autem de hac et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ostendit quod necesse est huic scientiae quod considerat quaedam de partibus animae. Secundo ostendit qualiter debeat ea considerare, ibi, contemplandum autem et cetera. Dicit ergo primo quod, cum nos intendimus perscrutari de virtute, intelligimus hoc de virtute humana. Dictum est enim supra, quod quaerimus in hac scientia bonum humanum et felicitatem humanam. Et ideo si virtutem quaerimus propter felicitatem, necesse est quod virtutem humanam quaeramus. Virtus autem quae est proprie humana, non est ea quae est corporis, in qua communicat cum aliis rebus, sed ea quae est animae, quae est propria sibi. Sed et hoc etiam competit ei quod supra diximus quod felicitas est operatio animae. 226. Then [I, B], at “The virtue,” he takes up certain questions pertaining to the parts of the soul, which are necessary for the knowledge of virtues. On this point he does two things. First [B, A’] he shows it is necessary that such things be discussed in this science. Second [B, B’] he takes them up at “Certain things about the soul etc.” In regard to the first he does two things. First [A’, 1] he shows that it is necessary in this science to consider certain questions about the parts of the soul. Second [A, 2], at “The soul must be studied etc.,” he shows how we must consider these questions. First, since it is our intention to investigate virtue, we understand that we are speaking of human virtue. We have just now noted (224) that we are looking for human good and human happiness in this science. If, therefore, we seek virtue for the sake of happiness, we necessarily seek human virtue. But that virtue is peculiarly human which is proper to the soul, for it does not belong to the body nor is it shared in common with other beings. Pertinent here is what we said before (123-126), that happiness is an activity of the soul. Sic ergo se habet politicus ad considerandum de anima cuius virtutem quaerit, sicut medicus ad considerandum de corpore cuius sanitatem inquirit. Unde manifestum est quod oportet politicum aliqualiter cognoscere ea quae pertinent ad animam, sicut medicus qui curat oculos et totum corpus oportet quod consideret de oculis et de toto corpore, et tanto magis hoc pertinet ad politicam ut consideret animam cuius virtutem inquirit, quanto est melior ipsa quam scientia medicinae, ut ex supradictis patet. Et ideo oportet, quod eius consideratio sit magis completa. Videmus autem quod excellentes medici multa tractant circa cognitionem corporis, et non solum circa medicinales operationes. Unde et politicus debet aliqua considerare de anima. 227. In the study of the soul whose virtue he seeks, the statesman is compared to the physician who studies the body seeking its health. Obviously then the statesman must know to some extent the things belonging to the soul, as the physician who treats the eyes and the whole body must study something about the eyes and the whole body. The obligation of the statesman to study the soul whose virtue he seeks is greater because political science is more important than the science of medicine—a fact we know from what was said previously (25-30. Consequently, the study of political science must be more thorough. We see that skillful physicians study many things which will give them a knowledge of the body and not merely what concerns cures. Hence a statesman gives some thought to the soul. Deinde cum dicit contemplandum autem etc., ostendit qualiter de his debeat considerare. Et dicit quod in hac scientia contemplandum est de anima gratia horum, idest virtutum et actuum hominis, de quibus est hic principalis intentio. Et ideo intantum considerandum est de anima, quantum sufficit ad ea quae principaliter quaerimus. Si autem aliquis vellet plus certificare de anima, quam sufficit ad propositum, requireret hoc maius opus quam ea quae in proposito quaeruntur. Et ita est in omnibus aliis quae quaeruntur propter finem, quod eorum quantitas est assumenda secundum quod competit fini. 228. Then [A’, 2], at “The soul must be studied,” he shows in what way the statesman ought to investigate these things. In this science, he says, the soul must be studied for the sake of the virtues and human actions that are the principle objects here investigated. Therefore, the study of the soul must be such as suffices for the things chiefly sought. If a man should wish to make a more exhaustive study, he will be imposing a greater task than the object of our investigation requires. So too in all other things sought for the sake of an end, the extent of them must be measured according to the end itself. Deinde cum dicit: dicuntur autem de hac etc., assumit ea quae sunt hic consideranda de partibus animae. Et primo dividit partes animae in rationale et irrationale; secundo subdividit irrationale, ibi: irrationabilis autem etc.; tertio subdividit rationale, ibi: si autem oportet et hoc et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ponit divisionem. Secundo dicit praetermittendam quamdam dubitationem, ibi, haec autem utrum et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod de anima sufficienter quaedam sunt dicta in libro de anima, quem vocat exteriores sermones, vel quia scripsit librum illum per modum epistolae ad aliquos longe existentes, libri enim quos scribebat docens suos auditores vocabantur auditus, sicut liber physicorum dicitur de physico auditu. Vel melius, exteriores sermones vocantur qui sunt extra propositam scientiam. His autem quae ibi dicta sunt hic est utendum; puta quod quaedam pars animae est rationalis, quaedam irrationalis, ut dicitur in tertio de anima. 229. Then [B, B’], at “Certain things about the soul,” he takes up the things we must consider here about the parts of the soul. First [B’, 1] he divides the parts of the soul into rational and irrational. Second [Lect. 20; 2], at “One part of the irrational soul etc.” (B.1102 a 33), he subdivides the irrational. Third [Lect. 20; 31, at “If however we must etc.” (B. 1103 a 2), he subdivides the other member of the first division, that is, the rational part of the soul. In regard to the first he does two things. First [1, a] he gives the division. Second [1, b], at “But whether the parts etc.,” he says that a certain question must be left unanswered. He says first that certain things about the soul have been adequately treated in the book De Anima, which he calls extraneous discussions because he wrote the book as an epistle to persons living at a considerable distance. The books that he was accustomed to teach his students (auditors) were called reports or notes (auditions), as the books of the Physics are entitled on the audition of classes about nature; or they are called extraneous for the better reason that they are outside the scope of the immediate science. However, here we must use the things discussed in that book, for instance, one part of the soul is rational, another part irrational as is asserted in the third book De Anima (Ch. 9, 432 a 27; St. Th. Lect. 14, 797). Deinde cum dicit: haec autem utrum determinata sint etc., movet quandam dubitationem quam dicit esse in proposito praetermittendam, scilicet utrum hae duae partes animae, rationale scilicet et irrationale, sint distincta ab invicem subiecto, loco et situ, sicut particulae corporis vel cuiuscumque alterius continui divisibilis, sicut Plato posuit rationale esse in cerebro, concupiscibile in corde et nutritivum in hepate; vel potius hae duae partes non dividantur secundum subiectum sed solum secundum rationem, sicut in circumferentia circuli curvum, idest convexum et concavum non dividuntur subiecto, sed solum ratione. Et dicit quod quantum pertinet ad propositum non differt quid horum dicatur. Et ideo praetermittit hanc quaestionem ut ad propositum non pertinentem. 230. Then [1, b], at “But whether the parts,” he asks a certain question which is to be left unanswered intentionally. Are the two parts of the soul, rational and irrational, distinct from one another in their subject according to location and position, as particles of a body or of some other divisible continuum? Plato located the rational part or power in the brain, the emotional part in the heart, and the assimilative part in the liver. Or perhaps these two parts are not divided according to subject but only in concept as in the circumference of a circle the convex and concave are not distinguished by subject but in concept alone. He says that so far as it concerns us at present, it does not matter which opinion is held. Hence he leaves the question unanswered because it does not pertain to our present purpose.
Subdivisions of the Irrational Soul
Chapter 13 2. HE SUBDIVIDES THE IRRATIONAL PART. a. He presents one member of the subdivision. i. He mentions an irrational part of the soul. — 231-232 τοῦ ἀλόγου δὲ τὸ μὲν ἔοικε κοινῷ καὶ φυτικῷ, λέγω δὲ τὸ αἴτιον τοῦ τρέφεσθαι καὶ αὔξεσθαι· τὴν τοιαύτην γὰρ δύναμιν τῆς ψυχῆς ἐν ἅπασι τοῖς τρεφομένοις θείη τις ἂν καὶ ἐν τοῖς ἐμβρύοις, τὴν αὐτὴν δὲ ταύτην καὶ ἐν τοῖς τελείοις· εὐλογώτερον γὰρ ἢ ἄλλην τινά. One part of the irrational soul is like the vegetative soul common to all living things. By vegetative I understand that part which is the cause of nutrition and growth. Such a power of the soul is found in all things that assimilate food. It is found even in embryos and in the lowest forms of animal life. To these it is more reasonable to assign the vegetative part than some other. ii. He shows that this part is not properly human. x. FIRST HE CONCLUDES THIS FROM THE PREMISES. — 233 ταύτης μὲν οὖν κοινή τις ἀρετὴ καὶ οὐκ ἀνθρωπίνη φαίνεται· Because this power is common, it follows that it is not human. y. HE ADDS A PROOF FROM A PARTICULAR EVIDENT SIGN. — 234-235 δοκεῖ γὰρ ἐν τοῖς ὕπνοις ἐνεργεῖν μάλιστα τὸ μόριον τοῦτο καὶ ἡ δύναμις αὕτη, ὁ δ' ἀγαθὸς καὶ κακὸς ἥκιστα διάδηλοι καθ' ὕπνον ὅθεν φασὶν οὐδὲν διαφέρειν τὸ ἥμισυ τοῦ βίου τοὺς εὐδαίμονας τῶν ἀθλίων· συμβαίνει δὲ τοῦτο εἰκότως· ἀργία γάρ ἐστιν ὁ ὕπνος τῆς ψυχῆς ᾗ λέγεται σπουδαία καὶ φαύλη, πλὴν εἰ μὴ κατὰ μικρὸν καὶ διικνοῦνταί τινες τῶν κινήσεων, καὶ ταύτῃ βελτίω γίνεται τὰ φαντάσματα τῶν ἐπιεικῶν ἢ τῶν τυχόντων. ἀλλὰ περὶ μὲν τούτων ἅλις, καὶ τὸ θρεπτικὸν ἐατέον, ἐπειδὴ τῆς ἀνθρωπικῆς ἀρετῆς ἄμοιρον πέφυκεν. It seems that the vegetative part and potency of the soul are most active during sleep. Now good and evil persons are hardly distinguishable in their sleep. Hence the saying that the happy are no better off than the miserable for half their lives. This is a reasonable doctrine, for sleep is a cessation from the operation according to which the soul is called good and evil. Yet perhaps certain activities do penetrate the soul of the sleeper gradually. In this way the dreams of the virtuous become better than the dreams of other persons. But what we have now said on this subject will suffice. Therefore, discussion of the nutritive part must come to an end because it has no part in human virtue. b. He presents the other (member of the subdivision). i. He indicates what he intends. — 236 ἔοικε δὲ καὶ ἄλλη τις φύσις τῆς ψυχῆς ἄλογος εἶναι, μετέχουσα μέντοι πῃ λόγου. Seemingly there is another part of the soul, irrational also but participating in reason to some extent. ii. He proves his proposition. x. THERE IS ANOTHER PART OF THE IRRATIONAL SOUL. — 237-238 τοῦ γὰρ ἐγκρατοῦς καὶ ἀκρατοῦς τὸν λόγον καὶ τῆς ψυχῆς τὸ λόγον ἔχον ἐπαινοῦμεν· ὀρθῶς γὰρ καὶ ἐπὶ τὰ βέλτιστα παρακαλεῖ· φαίνεται δ' ἐν αὐτοῖς καὶ ἄλλο τι παρὰ τὸν λόγον πεφυκός, ὃ μάχεται καὶ ἀντιτείνει τῷ λόγῳ. ἀτεχνῶς γὰρ καθάπερ τὰ παραλελυμένα τοῦ σώματος μόρια εἰς τὰ δεξιὰ προαιρουμένων κινῆσαι τοὐναντίον εἰς τὰ ἀριστερὰ παραφέρεται, καὶ ἐπὶ τῆς ψυχῆς οὕτως· ἐπὶ τἀναντία γὰρ αἱ ὁρμαὶ τῶν ἀκρατῶν. ἀλλ' ἐν τοῖς σώμασι μὲν ὁρῶμεν τὸ παραφερόμενον, ἐπὶ δὲ τῆς ψυχῆς οὐχ ὁρῶμεν. ἴσως δ' οὐδὲν ἧττον καὶ ἐν τῇ ψυχῇ νομιστέον εἶναί τι παρὰ τὸν λόγον, ἐναντιούμενον τούτῳ καὶ ἀντιβαῖνον. πῶς δ' ἕτερον, οὐδὲν διαφέρει. We praise the rational principle in the incontinent and continent man, for reason rightly induces to what is best. But something besides reason seems to be innate in them, which conflicts with reason and resists reason. As paralyzed members of the body are said to move wrongly to the left contrary to the will choosing the right, so also in the soul, for the movement of the incontinent are to things contrary to reason. While the uncontrolled movement can be seen in bodies, it is invisible in the soul. Nevertheless we must judge that there is something in the soul besides reason which is contrary and resistant to reason. But how this differs from reason does not matter at present. y. THIS PART PARTICIPATES IN REASON. aa. His first argument is based on acts taking place within man. a’ He shows that this irrational part participates in reason. — 239 λόγου δὲ καὶ τοῦτο φαίνεται μετέχειν, ὥσπερ εἴπομεν· πειθαρχεῖ γοῦν τῷ λόγῳ τὸ τοῦ ἐγκρατοῦσἔτι δ' ἴσως εὐηκοώτερόν ἐστι τὸ τοῦ σώφρονος καὶ ἀνδρείου· πάντα γὰρ ὁμοφωνεῖ τῷ λόγῳ. Now this part seems to share in reason, as we have said. Therefore, as found in the continent man, it is obedient to reason. But it is even more fully subject in the sober and courageous man whose every act harmonizes with reason. b’ He finishes... the difference of this irrational part from the part presented above. — 240 φαίνεται δὴ καὶ τὸ ἄλογον διττόν. τὸ μὲν γὰρ φυτικὸν οὐδαμῶς κοινωνεῖ λόγου, τὸ δ' ἐπιθυμητικὸν καὶ ὅλως ὀρεκτικὸν μετέχει πως, ᾗ κατήκοόν ἐστιν αὐτοῦ καὶ πειθαρχικόν· οὕτω δὴ καὶ τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ τῶν φίλων φαμὲν ἔχειν λόγον, καὶ οὐχὥσπερ τῶν μαθηματικῶν. Apparently the irrational part is twofold. The vegetative power does not partake of reason at all. But the concupiscible power and every appetitive power participate to some extent because they heed and are obedient to reason. Therefore, we say that reason holds the place of a father and friends but not of mathematicians. bb. His second (argument) is based on acts external to man. — 241 ὅτι δὲ πείθεταί πως ὑπὸ λόγου τὸ ἄλογον, μηνύει καὶ ἡ νουθέτησις καὶ πᾶσα ἐπιτίμησίς τε καὶ παράκλησις. Persuasion, reproach and entreaty in all cases indicate that the irrational principle is somewhat influenced by reason. 3. HE SUBDIVIDES THE OTHER MEMBER OF THE FIRST DIVISION, THE RATIONAL PART OF THE SOUL. — 242 εἰ δὲ χρὴ καὶ τοῦτο φάναι λόγον ἔχειν, διττὸν ἔσται καὶ τὸ λόγον ἔχον, τὸ μὲν κυρίως καὶ ἐν αὑτῷ, τὸ δ' ὥσπερ τοῦ πατρὸς ἀκουστικόν τι. If, however, we must say that this part shares in reason, then the rational will be of two kinds: one having reason principally and of itself, the other obedient to the reason as to a father. C. He divides virtue according to this difference in the parts of the soul. — 243-244 διορίζεται δὲ καὶ ἡ ἀρετὴ κατὰ τὴν διαφορὰν ταύτην· λέγομεν γὰρ αὐτῶν τὰς μὲν διανοητικὰς τὰς δὲ ἠθικάς, σοφίαν μὲν καὶ σύνεσιν καὶ φρόνησιν διανοητικάς, ἐλευθεριότητα δὲ καὶ σωφροσύνην ἠθικάς. λέγοντες γὰρ περὶ τοῦ ἤθους οὐ λέγομεν ὅτι σοφὸς ἢ συνετὸς ἀλλ' ὅτι πρᾶος ἢ σώφρων· ἐπαινοῦμεν δὲ καὶ τὸν σοφὸν κατὰ τὴν ἕξιν· τῶν ἕξεων δὲ τὰς ἐπαινετὰς ἀρετὰς λέγομεν. Virtue is divided according to this difference, for we call some virtues intellectual, others moral. Wisdom, understanding and prudence are said to be intellectual virtues, while liberality and sobriety are called moral. When speaking of man’s good morals we do not describe him as wise or intelligent but as mild-tempered or sober. We do praise a person for acquiring the habit of wisdom since praiseworthy habits are called virtues.
COMMENTARY OF ST. THOMAS Irrationabilis autem et cetera. Postquam philosophus divisit partes animae per rationale et irrationale, hic subdividit partem irrationalem. Et primo ponit unum membrum divisionis. Secundo ponit aliud, ibi, videtur utique et alia quaedam et cetera. Circa primum duo facit: primo proponit quandam partem animae irrationalem. Secundo ostendit quod illa pars animae non est proprie humana, ibi: haec quidem igitur et cetera. Dicit ergo primo, quod inter irrationales partes animae una est, quae assimilatur animae plantarum, quae est communis omnibus viventibus hic inferius. Et huiusmodi pars est illa quae est causa nutrimenti et augmenti in hominibus. Et talis pars animae ponitur in omnibus quae nutriuntur, non solum in animalibus, sed in plantis; in animalibus autem invenitur non solum iam natis, sed etiam antequam nascantur, idest in embryonibus, qui manifeste nutriuntur et crescunt. 231. After the philosopher has divided the parts of the soul into rational and irrational, here  he subdivides the irrational part. First [2, a] he presents one member of the subdivision; and then [2, b], he presents the other at “Seemingly there is another part etc.” In regard to the initial point he does two things. First [a, i] he mentions an irrational part of the soul. Then [a, ii] he shows that this part is not properly human, at “Because this power etc.” He says first that one of the parts of the irrational soul is like the plant soul and is common to all things living here below. It is that part which is the cause of assimilation and growth. Such a part of the soul is found in every being that assimilates food not only in creatures after birth but even before birth, as in embryos that are obviously nourished and grow. Similiter etiam invenitur haec pars animae in animalibus non solum perfectis, idest habentibus omnes sensus et motis motu progressivo, sed etiam in animalibus imperfectis, quae habent solum sensum tactus et manent immobilia in eodem loco, sicut sunt conchilia. Manifestum est enim quod omnia praedicta vivunt, et habent aliquam partem animae. Rationabilius autem in eis omnibus ponitur haec pars animae quam quaevis alia, quia opera huius partis manifestius in eis apparent. 232. Likewise this part of the soul is discovered not only in the highly organized animals having all the senses and endowed with local motion but also in the lowest animals, like oysters having only the sense of touch and rooted to one place. Evidently all these creatures live and have some kind of soul. But this vegetative type of soul rather than some other part is more reasonably assigned to these lowest animals because the effects of this part are more evident in them. Deinde cum dicit: haec quidem igitur etc., ostendit quod praedicta pars animae non est humana. Et primo concludit hoc ex praedictis. Humanum enim dicimus, quod est proprium homini. Si ergo haec pars animae maxime est communis, consequens est quod non sit humana. 233. Then [a, ii], at “Because this power,” he shows that the aforementioned part of the soul is not human. First [a, ii, x] he concludes this from the premises. We call human that which is distinctive of man. If then a part of the soul is altogether common, it will not be human. Secundo ibi: videtur enim etc., addit manifestationem ex quodam evidenti signo. Haec enim pars animae efficacissime invenitur operari in somnis: recurrente enim calore naturali ad interiora, dum animal dormit, digestio melius celebratur. Id autem quod est proprium hominis, secundum quod homo dicitur bonus vel malus, non multum operatur in somno. Nec secundum somnum manifestatur quis sit bonus vel malus. Unde proverbialiter dicunt, quod felices non differunt a miseris secundum somnum, qui est dimidium vitae, quia scilicet in somno ligatur iudicium rationis et soporantur exteriores sensus, operatur autem phantasia et vis nutritiva. 234. Secondly [a, ii, y], at “It seems that,” he adds a proof from a particular evident sign. This part of the soul is found to be especially active during sleep, for when he natural heat has returned to the internal organs and the animal is asleep, digestion works better. But what is proper to man precisely as he is said to be good or evil operates only slightly during sleep. Good and evil persons are hardly distinguishable in their sleep. Hence the saying that the happy do not differ from the unhappy for half their life which is spent in sleep. The reason is that judgment of the intellect is bound during sleep, and the external senses do not function, although the imagination and he power of nutrition are active. Hoc autem contingit rationabiliter, scilicet quod secundum somnum non differat bonus et malus, felix et miser. Quia in somno quiescit a sua operatione illa pars animae secundum quam homo dicitur bonus et malus. Contingit tamen per accidens quod bonus et malus in somno differunt non propter differentiam eorum quae sit in dormiendo, sed propter differentiam quae fuit in vigilando, in quantum scilicet quidam motus vigilantium paulatim pertranseunt ad dormientes, prout scilicet ea quae homo vidit vel audivit vel cogitavit vigilando occurrunt phantasiae dormientis. Et per hunc modum in dormiendo fiunt meliora phantasmata virtuosorum, qui circa honesta se occupant in vigilando, quam quorumlibet aliorum qui vanis et inhonestis vigilantes se occupant. Et de his sufficiat quod dictum est. Relinquitur autem ex praemissis, quod pars animae nutritiva non est nata esse particeps humanae virtutis. 235. It is reasonable that the god and evil, the happy and the unhappy are indistinguishable while asleep because that part of man by which he is called good ceases to function during sleep. Good and evil men differ while asleep not on account of a difference occurring during their slumbers but because of what happened in their waking moments. Conscious activity gradually penetrates to the soul of the sleeper so that the things a man has seen or heard or thought while awake, present themselves to his imagination in sleep. In this way the virtuous who spend their wakeful hours in good works have more edifying dreams than other persons who occupy their conscious moments with idle and evil woks. What we have now said on this subject will suffice (2334-235). We conclude then from the premises (233-235), that the nutritive part of the soul is not adapted by nature to participate in human virtue. Deinde cum dicit: videtur utique etc., ponit aliud membrum divisionis. Et primo proponit quod intendit. Secundo probat propositum, ibi incontinentis enim et cetera. Dicit ergo primo quod praeter nutritivam partem animae, videtur esse quaedam alia pars animae, irrationalis quidem sicut et nutritiva, sed aliqualiter participans rationem; in quo differt a nutritiva, quae omnino est expers humanae virtutis, ut dictum est. 236. Then [2, b], at “Seemingly there is,” he presents the other member of the division. First [b, i] he indicates what he intends; and second [b, ii] he proves his proposition at “We praise the rational etc.” He says first that besides the vegetative part of the soul, there seems to be another part, irrational like the vegetative, but participating in reason to some extent. In this it differs from the vegetative part that has nothing whatsoever to do with human virtue as was just said (235). Deinde cum dicit incontinentis enim etc., probat propositum. Et primo quod sit quaedam alia pars animae irrationalis; secundo quod participet rationem, ibi, ratione autem et hoc videtur, et cetera. Primum autem probat ratione sumpta ex parte continentis et incontinentis, in quibus laudamus partem animae quae habet rationem, eo quod ratio eorum recte deliberat et ad optima inducit quasi deprecando vel persuadendo: uterque enim horum eligit abstinere ab illicitis voluptatibus. Sed in utroque eorum videtur esse aliquid naturaliter eis inditum praeter rationem, quod contrariatur rationi et obviat ei, idest impedit ipsam in executione suae electionis, unde patet quod est quiddam irrationale, cum sit rationi contrarium. Et hoc est appetitus sensitivus, qui appetit id quod est delectabile sensui, quod interdum contrariatur ei quod ratio iudicat esse bonum simpliciter. Hoc autem in eo qui est continens vincitur a ratione, nam continens habet quidem concupiscentias pravas, sed ratio eas non sequitur. In incontinente autem vincit rationem, quae deducitur a concupiscentiis pravis. 237. Then [b, ii], at “We praise the rational,” he proves his proposition: first [b, ii, x] that there is another part of the irrational soul; second [b, ii, y] that this part participates in reason at “Now this part seems to share in reason.” He proves the first by an argument taken from continent and incontinent men. In this matter we praise the part of the soul having reason because it rightly deliberates and induces to what is best, as if by entreaty and persuasion. Both—continent and incontinent—choose abstain from unlawful pleasures. But seemingly in both there is something innate in them other than reason, and this something conflicts with reason and resists or hinders reason in the execution of its choice. Obviously it is something irrational, since it is contrary to reason. The sensitive appetite, which desires what is pleasant to sense and at times opposes what reason judges absolutely good, would be such a thing. This appetite in the continent man is restrained by reason, for he certainly has evil desires but his reason does not follow them. On the other hand the appetite in the incontinent man overcomes reason, which is seduced by evil desires. Et ideo subdit exemplum, quod sicut quando corporis membra sunt dissoluta, quia scilicet non possunt omnino contineri a virtute corporis regitiva, sicut accidit in paraliticis et ebriis, qui moventur in partem sinistram, quando homines eligunt moveri in dextram; ita etiam firmiter verum est ex parte animae in incontinentibus quod moventur ad contraria eorum quae ratio eligit. Sed hoc non ita apparet in partibus animae, sicut in partibus corporis. Quia in partibus corporis manifeste videmus quando aliquid inordinate movetur, sed in partibus animae non ita manifeste hoc videmus. Nihilominus tamen existimandum est, quod aliquid sit in homine quod contrariatur et obviat rationi. Sed qualiter hoc sit alterum a ratione, utrum scilicet subiecto vel solum ratione, hoc non differt ad propositum. 238. Then he adds an illustration. The members of the body are incapacitated when they cannot be controlled by the regulative power of the soul, as happens to paralytics and the intoxicated who move to the left side when hey wish to move to the right. This is true also of the souls of incontinent persons who are moved to the opposite of what the reason chooses. But the process is not so apparent in the parts of the soul as in the parts of the body. We see clearly in what way a bodily member moves unnaturally, but the movement of the parts of the soul is not so obvious to us. Despite this, we must judge there is something that is contrary to reason and resists it. But how this may differ from reason—whether by subject or by concept alone—does not matter at present. Deinde cum dicit: ratione autem et hoc etc., ostendit secundum, scilicet quod huiusmodi irrationale participat rationem. Et primo manifestat hoc ex his quae intra hominem aguntur. Secundo ex his quae aguntur extra hominem, ibi, quoniam autem suadetur et cetera. Circa primum duo facit. Primo ostendit quod hoc irrationale participat rationem. Secundo quasi concludit differentiam huius irrationalis partis ad eam quae supra posita est, ibi: videtur utique et irrationabile duplex et cetera. Dicit ergo primo quod hoc irrationale de quo nunc dictum est, videtur aliqualiter participare ratione, sicut supra dictum est. Et hoc manifestum est in homine continente, cuius appetitus sensitivus obedit rationi. Quamvis enim habeat concupiscentias pravas, non tamen secundum eas operatur, sed secundum rationem. Et multo amplius subiicitur huiusmodi pars animae rationi in homine sobrio idest temperato, qui ita habet appetitum sensitivum edomitum per rationem, quod non sunt in eo concupiscentiae pravae vehementes. Et eadem ratio est de forti et de quolibet habente habitum virtutis moralis. Quia in talibus fere omnia consonant rationi; idest non solum exteriores actus, sed etiam interiores concupiscentiae. 239. Then [b, ii, y], at “Now this part,” he shows that an irrational part of this kind participates in reason. His first argument [y, aa] is based on acts taking place within man; his second [y, bb], at “Persuasion, reproach)” is based on acts external to man, With the first he does two things. First [aa, a’] he shows that this irrational part participates in reason. Second [aa, b’] he finishes the treatment of the difference of this irrational “ part from the part presented above, at “Apparently the irrational part.” He says first that the irrational part, of which we have now spoken (233-235), seems in some way to participate in reason, as was just said (236). This is obvious in the continent man whose sensitive appetite obeys reason. Although he may have evil desires, nevertheless he does not act according to them but according to reason. In the sober or temperate man this part of the soul is even more fully subject to reason. Such a man has so subdued his sensitive appetite that evil desires in him are not vehement. We may say the same of the courageous man and of anyone endowed with the habit of moral virtue. The reason is that in these men nearly everything—both external actions and internal desires—harmonize with reason. Deinde cum dicit: videtur utique etc., concludit ex praemissis differentiam utriusque irrationalis. Et dicit, quod videtur, secundum praemissa duplex esse irrationale. Nam nutritivum, quod invenitur, in plantis, in nullo communicat cum ratione. Non enim obedit imperio rationis. Sed vis concupiscibilis et omnis vis appetitiva, sicut irascibilis et voluntas, participant aliqualiter ratione, secundum quod exaudiunt rationem monentem et oboediunt ei ut imperanti. Et ita rationem dicimus se habere in loco patris imperantis et amicorum admonentium, et non se habet per modum speculantis tantum, sicut ratio mathematicorum. Tali enim ratione haec pars animae irrationalis in nullo participat. 240. Then [aa, b’], at “Apparently the irrational,” he concludes the difference between the two irrational parts from the premises. He says that according to the premises the irrational part is apparently twofold. Now the vegetative part, found in plants, does not partake of reason in any way, for it is not obedient to the direction of reason. But the concupiscible power and every appetitive power like the irascible emotion and the will participate in reason in some measure because they heed the movement of the reason and are obedient to its regulations. Hence we say reason holds the place of a father giving guidance and of friends offering advice. But reason here does not play the role of a mere theorist like the reason of a mathematician, for the irrational part of the soul does not partake in any way of reason understood in this sense. Deinde cum dicit: quoniam autem suadetur etc., ostendit quod hoc irrationale participet ratione per ea quae exterius aguntur. Significat enim hoc, ut ipse dicit, et suasio quae est ab amicis, et increpatio quae est a maioribus, et deprecatio quae est a minoribus, ad hoc quod homo suas concupiscentias non sequatur. Haec autem omnia frustra essent nisi huiusmodi pars animae irrationalis participare possit ratione. Et ex hoc apparet, quod ratio non subditur motibus passionum appetitus sensitivi, sed potest eos reprimere. Et ideo non subditur motibus caelestium corporum, ex quibus per immutationem corporis humani potest fieri aliqua immutatio circa appetitum animae sensitivum. Cum enim intellectus vel ratio non sit potentia alicuius organi corporalis, non subicitur directe actioni alicuius virtutis corporeae; et eadem ratione nec voluntas, quae est in ratione, ut dicitur in tertio de anima. 241. Then [y, bb], at “Persuasion, reproach,” he shows through the things externally done that the irrational part participates in reason. In his opinion this is indicated from the fact that the persuasion of friends, the reproach of superiors and the entreaties of inferiors aim to keep a man from following his desires. But all these would be useless unless this part of the irrational soul could share in reason. From this too it is apparent that reason is not controlled by the movements of the passions of the sensitive appetite but quite the contrary—reason can restrain such movements. Therefore, reason is not governed by the motions of the heavenly bodies, which can effect some change in the sensitive appetite of the soul through a change in the human body. Since the intellect or reason is not a faculty of any bodily organ, it is not directly subject to the action of any bodily power. The same is true of the will that is in the reason, as was said in the third book De Anima (Ch. 3, 427 a 21; St. Th. Lect. 4, 617-621). Deinde cum dicit: si autem oportet et hoc etc., subdividit alium membrum divisionis primae, scilicet rationalem animae partem. Et dicit, quod si oportet dicere illam partem animae, quae participat ratione esse aliqualiter rationale, duplex erit rationale: unum quidem sicut principaliter et in seipso rationem habens, quod est essentialiter rationale. Aliud autem est, quod est natum obedire rationi, sicut et patri, et hoc dicimus rationale per participationem. Et secundum hoc, unum membrum continetur et sub rationali et irrationali. Est enim aliquid irrationale tantum, sicut pars animae nutritiva. Quaedam vero est rationalis tantum, sicut ipse intellectus et ratio; quaedam vero est secundum se quidem irrationalis, participative autem rationalis. 242. Then , at “If however,” he subdivides the other member of the first division, the rational part of the soul. According to him (if we must say that that part of the soul that participates in reason is rational in some way) the rational part will be of two kinds: one, having reason principally and in itself, is rational by nature. But the other is inherently adapted to obey reason as a father, and is called rational by participation. In accord with this, one member is contained under both rational and irrational. Now, one part of the soul, the vegetative, is irrational alone; another part is rational alone, the intellect and reason. Still another part is of itself irrational but rational by participation, like the sensitive appetite and the will. Deinde cum dicit determinatur autem virtus etc., dividit virtutem secundum praedictam differentiam potentiarum animae. Et dicit quod virtus determinatur, idest dividitur, secundum praedictam differentiam partium animae. Cum enim virtus humana sit per quam bene perficitur opus hominis quod est secundum rationem, necesse est quod virtus humana sit in aliquo rationali; unde, cum rationale sit duplex, scilicet per essentiam et per participationem, consequens est quod sit duplex humana virtus. Quarum quaedam sit in eo quod est rationale per seipsum, quae vocatur intellectualis; quaedam vero est in eo quod est rationale per participationem, idest in appetitiva animae parte, et haec vocatur moralis. Et ideo dicit quod virtutum quasdam dicimus esse intellectuales, quasdam vero morales. Sapientia enim et intellectus et prudentia dicuntur esse intellectuales virtutes, sed liberalitas et sobrietas morales. 243. Then [C], at “Virtue is divided,” he divides virtue according to this difference in the parts of the soul. He says that virtue is designated or divided according to the above-mentioned difference in the parts of the soul. Since human virtue perfects the work of man which is done according to reason, human virtue must consist in something reasonable. Since the reasonable is of two kinds, by nature and by participation, it follows that there are two kinds of human virtue. One of these is placed in what is rational by nature and is called intellectual. The other is placed in what is rational by participation, that is, in the appetitive part of the soul, and is called moral. Therefore, he says, we call some of the virtues intellectual and some moral. Wisdom, understanding and prudence are said to be intellectual virtues, while liberality and sobriety are called moral. Et hoc probat per laudes humanas: quia cum volumus aliquem de moribus suis laudare, non dicimus quod sit sapiens et intelligens, sed quod sit sobrius et mitis. Nec solum laudamus aliquem de moribus, sed etiam laudamus aliquem propter habitum sapientiae. Habitus autem laudabiles dicuntur virtutes. Praeter ergo virtutes morales, sunt aliquae intellectuales, sicut sapientia et intellectus et aliquae huiusmodi. Et sic terminatur primus liber. 244. He proves this point from human praises. When we wish to praise someone for good morals, we do not describe him as wise and intelligent, but as sober and mild-tempered. We do not praise a man for good morals alone but also for the habit of wisdom. Praiseworthy habits are called virtues. Therefore, besides the moral virtues, there are also intellectual virtues like wisdom, understanding, and some others of this kind. Thus ends the first book.