Ethics; Book 9

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I

[Sidenote: 1164a] Well, in all the Friendships the parties to which are
Dissimilar it is the proportionate which equalises and preserves the
Friendship, as has been already stated: I mean, in the Social Friendship
The cobbler, for instance, gets an equivalent for his shoes after a
Certain rate; and the weaver, and all others in like manner. Now in
This case a common measure has been provided in money, and to this
Accordingly all things are referred and by this are measured: but in
The Friendship of Love the complaint is sometimes from the lover that
Though he loves exceedingly, his love is not requited; he having perhaps
All the time nothing that can be the object of Friendship: again
Oftentimes from the object of love that he who as a suitor promised any
And every thing now performs nothing. These cases occur because the
Friendship of the lover for the beloved object is based upon pleasure
That of the other for him upon utility, and in one of the parties the
Requisite quality is not found: for, as these are respectively the
Grounds of the Friendship, the Friendship comes to be broken up because
The motives to it cease to exist: the parties loved not one another but
Qualities in one another which are not permanent, and so neither are the
Friendships: whereas the Friendship based upon the moral character of
The parties, being independent and disinterested, is permanent, as we
Have already stated

Quarrels arise also when the parties realise different results and not
Those which they desire; for the not attaining one's special object is
All one, in this case, with getting nothing at all: as in the well-known
Case where a man made promises to a musician, rising in proportion to
The excellence of his music; but when, the next morning, the musician
Claimed the performance of his promises, he said that he had given him
Pleasure for pleasure: of course, if each party had intended this, it
Would have been all right: but if the one desires amusement and the
Other gain, and the one gets his object but the other not, the dealing
Cannot be fair: because a man fixes his mind upon what he happens to
Want, and will give so and so for that specific thing

The question then arises, who is to fix the rate? the man who first
Gives, or the man who first takes? because, _prima facie_, the man who
First gives seems to leave the rate to be fixed by the other party
This, they say, was in fact the practice of Protagoras: when he taught
A man anything he would bid the learner estimate the worth of the
Knowledge gained by his own private opinion; and then he used to take so
Much from him. In such cases some people adopt the rule

"With specified reward a friend should be content."

They are certainly fairly found fault with who take the money in advance
And then do nothing of what they said they would do, their promises
Having been so far beyond their ability; for such men do not perform
What they agreed, The Sophists, however, are perhaps obliged to take
This course, because no one would give a sixpence for their knowledge
These then, I say, are fairly found fault with, because they do not what
They have already taken money for doing

[Sidenote: 1164b] In cases where no stipulation as to the respective
Services is made they who disinterestedly do the first service will not
Raise the question (as we have said before), because it is the nature of
Friendship, based on mutual goodness to be reference to the intention of
The other, the intention being characteristic of the true friend and of
Goodness

And it would seem the same rule should be laid down for those who are
Connected with one another as teachers and learners of philosophy; for
Here the value of the commodity cannot be measured by money, and, in
Fact, an exactly equivalent price cannot be set upon it, but perhaps it
Is sufficient to do what one can, as in the case of the gods or one's
Parents

But where the original giving is not upon these terms but avowedly for
Some return, the most proper course is perhaps for the requital to be
Such as _both_ shall allow to be proportionate, and, where this cannot
Be, then for the receiver to fix the value would seem to be not only
Necessary but also fair: because when the first giver gets that which is
Equivalent to the advantage received by the other, or to what he would
Have given to secure the pleasure he has had, then he has the value from
Him: for not only is this seen to be the course adopted in matters of
Buying and selling but also in some places the law does not allow of
Actions upon voluntary dealings; on the principle that when one man has
Trusted another he must be content to have the obligation discharged in
The same spirit as he originally contracted it: that is to say, it is
Thought fairer for the trusted, than for the trusting, party, to fix the
Value. For, in general, those who have and those who wish to get things
Do not set the same value on them: what is their own, and what they give
In each case, appears to them worth a great deal: but yet the return
Is made according to the estimate of those who have received first, it
Should perhaps be added that the receiver should estimate what he has
Received, not by the value he sets upon it now that he has it, but by
That which he set upon it before he obtained it

II

Questions also arise upon such points as the following: Whether one's
Father has an unlimited claim on one's services and obedience, or
Whether the sick man is to obey his physician? or, in an election of
A general, the warlike qualities of the candidates should be alone
Regarded?

In like manner whether one should do a service rather to one's friend or
To a good man? whether one should rather requite a benefactor or give to
One's companion, supposing that both are not within one's power?

[Sidenote: 1165a] Is not the true answer that it is no easy task to
Determine all such questions accurately, inasmuch as they involve
Numerous differences of all kinds, in respect of amount and what is
Honourable and what is necessary? It is obvious, of course, that no one
Person can unite in himself all claims. Again, the requital of benefits
Is, in general, a higher duty than doing unsolicited kindnesses to one's
Companion; in other words, the discharging of a debt is more obligatory
Upon one than the duty of giving to a companion. And yet this rule may
Admit of exceptions; for instance, which is the higher duty? for one who
Has been ransomed out of the hands of robbers to ransom in return his
Ransomer, be he who he may, or to repay him on his demand though he has
Not been taken by robbers, or to ransom his own father? for it would
Seem that a man ought to ransom his father even in preference to
Himself

Well then, as has been said already, as a general rule the debt
Should be discharged, but if in a particular case the giving greatly
Preponderates as being either honourable or necessary, we must be swayed
By these considerations: I mean, in some cases the requital of the
Obligation previously existing may not be equal; suppose, for instance
That the original benefactor has conferred a kindness on a good man
Knowing him to be such, whereas this said good man has to repay it
Believing him to be a scoundrel

And again, in certain cases no obligation lies on a man to lend to one
Who has lent to him; suppose, for instance, that a bad man lent to him
As being a good man, under the notion that he should get repaid, whereas
The said good man has no hope of repayment from him being a bad man
Either then the case is really as we have supposed it and then the claim
Is not equal, or it is not so but supposed to be; and still in so acting
People are not to be thought to act wrongly. In short, as has been
Oftentimes stated before, all statements regarding feelings and actions
Can be definite only in proportion as their object-matter is so; it is
Of course quite obvious that all people have not the same claim upon
One, nor are the claims of one's father unlimited; just as Jupiter does
Not claim all kinds of sacrifice without distinction: and since the
Claims of parents, brothers, companions, and benefactors, are all
Different, we must give to each what belongs to and befits each

And this is seen to be the course commonly pursued: to marriages men
Commonly invite their relatives, because these are from a common stock
And therefore all the actions in any way pertaining thereto are common
Also: and to funerals men think that relatives ought to assemble in
Preference to other people, for the same reason

And it would seem that in respect of maintenance it is our duty to
Assist our parents in preference to all others, as being their debtors
And because it is more honourable to succour in these respects the
Authors of our existence than ourselves. Honour likewise we ought to pay
To our parents just as to the gods, but then, not all kinds of honour:
Not the same, for instance, to a father as to a mother: nor again to a
Father the honour due to a scientific man or to a general but that
Which is a father's due, and in like manner to a mother that which is a
Mother's

To all our elders also the honour befitting their age, by rising up in
Their presence, turning out of the way for them, and all similar marks
Of respect: to our companions again, or brothers, frankness and free
Participation in all we have. And to those of the same family, or tribe
Or city, with ourselves, and all similarly connected with us, we should
Constantly try to render their due, and to discriminate what belongs to
Each in respect of nearness of connection, or goodness, or intimacy:
Of course in the case of those of the same class the discrimination is
Easier; in that of those who are in different classes it is a matter of
More trouble. This, however, should not be a reason for giving up
The attempt, but we must observe the distinctions so far as it is
Practicable to do so

III

A question is also raised as to the propriety of dissolving or not
Dissolving those Friendships the parties to which do not remain what
They were when the connection was formed

[Sidenote: 1165b] Now surely in respect of those whose motive to
Friendship is utility or pleasure there can be nothing wrong in breaking
Up the connection when they no longer have those qualities; because they
Were friends [not of one another, but] of those qualities: and, these
Having failed, it is only reasonable to expect that they should cease to
Entertain the sentiment

But a man has reason to find fault if the other party, being really
Attached to him because of advantage or pleasure, pretended to be so
Because of his moral character: in fact, as we said at the commencement
The most common source of quarrels between friends is their not being
Friends on the same grounds as they suppose themselves to be

Now when a man has been deceived in having supposed himself to excite
The sentiment of Friendship by reason of his moral character, the other
Party doing nothing to indicate he has but himself to blame: but when he
Has been deceived by the pretence of the other he has a right to find
Fault with the man who has so deceived him, aye even more than with
Utterers of false coin, in proportion to the greater preciousness of
That which is the object-matter of the villany

But suppose a man takes up another as being a good man, who turns out
And is found by him, to be a scoundrel, is he bound still to entertain
Friendship for him? or may we not say at once it is impossible? since
It is not everything which is the object-matter of Friendship, but only
That which is good; and so there is no obligation to be a bad man's
Friend, nor, in fact, ought one to be such: for one ought not to be a
Lover of evil, nor to be assimilated to what is base; which would be
Implied, because we have said before, like is friendly to like

Are we then to break with him instantly? not in all cases; only where
Our friends are incurably depraved; when there is a chance of amendment
We are bound to aid in repairing the moral character of our friends
Even more than their substance, in proportion as it is better and
More closely related to Friendship. Still he who should break off the
Connection is not to be judged to act wrongly, for he never was a friend
To such a character as the other now is, and therefore, since the man is
Changed and he cannot reduce him to his original state, he backs out of
The connection

To put another case: suppose that one party remains what he was when
The Friendship was formed, while the other becomes morally improved and
Widely different from his friend in goodness; is the improved character
To treat the other as a friend?

May we not say it is impossible? The case of course is clearest where
There is a great difference, as in the Friendships of boys: for suppose
That of two boyish friends the one still continues a boy in mind and the
Other becomes a man of the highest character, how can they be friends?
Since they neither are pleased with the same objects nor like and
Dislike the same things: for these points will not belong to them as
Regards one another, and without them it was assumed they cannot be
Friends because they cannot live in intimacy: and of the case of those
Who cannot do so we have spoken before

Well then, is the improved party to bear himself towards his former
Friend in no way differently to what he would have done had the
Connection never existed?

Surely he ought to bear in mind the intimacy of past times, and just as
We think ourselves bound to do favours for our friends in preference to
Strangers, so to those who have been friends and are so no longer we
Should allow somewhat on the score of previous Friendship, whenever the
Cause of severance is not excessive depravity on their part

IV

[Sidenote: II66a] Now the friendly feelings which are exhibited towards
Our friends, and by which Friendships are characterised, seem to have
Sprung out of those which we entertain toward ourselves. I mean, people
Define a friend to be "one who intends and does what is good (or what
He believes to be good) to another for that other's sake," or "one who
Wishes his friend to be and to live for that friend's own sake" (which
Is the feeling of mothers towards their children, and of friends who
Have come into collision). Others again, "one who lives with another and
Chooses the same objects," or "one who sympathises with his friend in
His sorrows and in his joys" (this too is especially the case with
Mothers)

Well, by some one of these marks people generally characterise
Friendship: and each of these the good man has towards himself, and all
Others have them in so far as they suppose themselves to be good. (For
As has been said before, goodness, that is the good man, seems to be a
Measure to every one else.)

For he is at unity in himself, and with every part of his soul he
Desires the same objects; and he wishes for himself both what is, and
What he believes to be, good; and he does it (it being characteristic
Of the good man to work at what is good), and for the sake of himself
Inasmuch as he does it for the sake of his Intellectual Principle which
Is generally thought to be a man's Self. Again, he wishes himself And
Specially this Principle whereby he is an intelligent being, to live and
Be preserved in life, because existence is a good to him that is a good
Man

But it is to himself that each individual wishes what is good, and no
Man, conceiving the possibility of his becoming other than he now is
Chooses that that New Self should have all things indiscriminately: a
God, for instance, has at the present moment the Chief Good, but he has
It in right of being whatever he actually now is: and the Intelligent
Principle must be judged to be each man's Self, or at least eminently so
[Though other Principles help, of course, to constitute him the man he
Is]. Furthermore, the good man wishes to continue to live with himself;
For he can do it with pleasure, in that his memories of past actions are
Full of delight and his anticipations of the future are good and such
Are pleasurable. Then, again, he has good store of matter for his
Intellect to contemplate, and he most especially sympathises with his
Self in its griefs and joys, because the objects which give him pain and
Pleasure are at all times the same, not one thing to-day and a different
One to-morrow: because he is not given to repentance, if one may so
Speak. It is then because each of these feelings are entertained by the
Good man towards his own Self and a friend feels towards a friend as
Towards himself (a friend being in fact another Self), that Friendship
Is thought to be some one of these things and they are accounted friends
In whom they are found. Whether or no there can really be Friendship
Between a man and his Self is a question we will not at present
Entertain: there may be thought to be Friendship, in so far as there are
Two or more of the aforesaid requisites, and because the highest degree
Of Friendship, in the usual acceptation of that term, resembles the
Feeling entertained by a man towards himself

[Sidenote: 1166b] But it may be urged that the aforesaid requisites are
To all appearance found in the common run of men, though they are men of
A low stamp

May it not be answered, that they share in them only in so far as they
Please themselves, and conceive themselves to be good? for certainly
They are not either really, or even apparently, found in any one of
Those who are very depraved and villainous; we may almost say not
Even in those who are bad men at all: for they are at variance with
Themselves and lust after different things from those which in cool
Reason they wish for, just as men who fail of Self-Control: I mean, they
Choose things which, though hurtful, are pleasurable, in preference to
Those which in their own minds they believe to be good: others again
From cowardice and indolence, decline to do what still they are
Convinced is best for them: while they who from their depravity have
Actually done many dreadful actions hate and avoid life, and accordingly
Kill themselves: and the wicked seek others in whose company to spend
Their time, but fly from themselves because they have many unpleasant
Subjects of memory, and can only look forward to others like them when
In solitude but drown their remorse in the company of others: and as
They have nothing to raise the sentiment of Friendship so they never
Feel it towards themselves

Neither, in fact, can they who are of this character sympathise with
Their Selves in their joys and sorrows, because their soul is, as it
Were, rent by faction, and the one principle, by reason of the depravity
In them, is grieved at abstaining from certain things, while the other
And better principle is pleased thereat; and the one drags them this way
And the other that way, as though actually tearing them asunder. And
Though it is impossible actually to have at the same time the sensations
Of pain and pleasure; yet after a little time the man is sorry for
Having been pleased, and he could wish that those objects had not given
Him pleasure; for the wicked are full of remorse

It is plain then that the wicked man cannot be in the position of a
Friend even towards himself, because he has in himself nothing which can
Excite the sentiment of Friendship. If then to be thus is exceedingly
Wretched it is a man's duty to flee from wickedness with all his might
And to strive to be good, because thus may he be friends with himself
And may come to be a friend to another

[Sidenote: V] Kindly Feeling, though resembling Friendship, is not
Identical with it, because it may exist in reference to those whom we
Do not know and without the object of it being aware of its existence
Which Friendship cannot. (This, by the way, has also been said before.)
And further, it is not even Affection because it does not imply
Intensity nor yearning, which are both consequences of Affection. Again
Affection requires intimacy but Kindly Feeling may arise quite suddenly
As happens sometimes in respect of men against whom people are matched
In any way, I mean they come to be kindly disposed to them and
Sympathise in their wishes, but still they would not join them in any
Action, because, as we said, they conceive this feeling of kindness
Suddenly and so have but a superficial liking

What it does seem to be is the starting point of a Friendship; just as
Pleasure, received through the sight, is the commencement of Love: for
No one falls in love without being first pleased with the personal
Appearance of the beloved object, and yet he who takes pleasure in it
Does not therefore necessarily love, but when he wearies for the object
In its absence and desires its presence. Exactly in the same way men
Cannot be friends without having passed through the stage of Kindly
Feeling, and yet they who are in that stage do not necessarily advance
To Friendship: they merely have an inert wish for the good of those
Toward whom they entertain the feeling, but would not join them in
Any action, nor put themselves out of the way for them. So that, in
A metaphorical way of speaking, one might say that it is dormant
Friendship, and when it has endured for a space and ripened into
Intimacy comes to be real Friendship; but not that whose object is
Advantage or pleasure, because such motives cannot produce even Kindly
Feeling

I mean, he who has received a kindness requites it by Kindly Feeling
Towards his benefactor, and is right in so doing: but he who wishes
Another to be prosperous, because he has hope of advantage through his
Instrumentality, does not seem to be kindly disposed to that person but
Rather to himself; just as neither is he his friend if he pays court to
Him for any interested purpose

Kindly Feeling always arises by reason of goodness and a certain
Amiability, when one man gives another the notion of being a fine
Fellow, or brave man, etc., as we said was the case sometimes with those
Matched against one another

[Sidenote: VI] Unity of Sentiment is also plainly connected with
Friendship, and therefore is not the same as Unity of Opinion
Because this might exist even between people unacquainted with one
Another

Nor do men usually say people are united in sentiment merely because
They agree in opinion on _any_ point, as, for instance, on points
Of astronomical science (Unity of Sentiment herein not having any
Connection with Friendship), but they say that Communities have Unity of
Sentiment when they agree respecting points of expediency and take the
Same line and carry out what has been determined in common consultation

Thus we see that Unity of Sentiment has for its object matters of
Action, and such of these as are of importance, and of mutual, or, in
The case of single States, common, interest: when, for instance, all
Agree in the choice of magistrates, or forming alliance with the
Lacedæmonians, or appointing Pittacus ruler (that is to say, supposing
He himself was willing). [Sidenote: 1167_b_] But when each wishes
Himself to be in power (as the brothers in the Phoenissæ), they quarrel
And form parties: for, plainly, Unity of Sentiment does not merely imply
That each entertains the same idea be it what it may, but that they do
So in respect of the same object, as when both the populace and the
Sensible men of a State desire that the best men should be in office
Because then all attain their object

Thus Unity of Sentiment is plainly a social Friendship, as it is also
Said to be: since it has for its object-matter things expedient and
Relating to life

And this Unity exists among the good: for they have it towards
Themselves and towards one another, being, if I may be allowed the
Expression, in the same position: I mean, the wishes of such men are
Steady and do not ebb and flow like the Euripus, and they wish what is
Just and expedient and aim at these things in common

The bad, on the contrary, can as little have Unity of Sentiment as they
Can be real friends, except to a very slight extent, desiring as they
Do unfair advantage in things profitable while they shirk labour and
Service for the common good: and while each man wishes for these things
For himself he is jealous of and hinders his neighbour: and as they
Do not watch over the common good it is lost. The result is that they
Quarrel while they are for keeping one another to work but are not
Willing to perform their just share

[Sidenote: VII] Benefactors are commonly held to have more Friendship
For the objects of their kindness than these for them: and the fact
Is made a subject of discussion and inquiry, as being contrary to
Reasonable expectation

The account of the matter which satisfies most persons is that the one
Are debtors and the others creditors: and therefore that, as in the case
Of actual loans the debtors wish their creditors out of the way while
The creditors are anxious for the preservation of their debtors, so
Those who have done kindnesses desire the continued existence of the
People they have done them to, under the notion of getting a return
Of their good offices, while these are not particularly anxious about
Requital

Epicharmus, I suspect, would very probably say that they who give this
Solution judge from their own baseness; yet it certainly is like human
Nature, for the generality of men have short memories on these points
And aim rather at receiving than conferring benefits

But the real cause, it would seem, rests upon nature, and the case is
Not parallel to that of creditors; because in this there is no affection
To the persons, but merely a wish for their preservation with a view to
The return: whereas, in point of fact, they who have done kindnesses
Feel friendship and love for those to whom they have done them, even
Though they neither are, nor can by possibility hereafter be, in a
Position to serve their benefactors

[Sidenote: 1168_a_] And this is the case also with artisans; every one
I mean, feels more affection for his own work than that work possibly
Could for him if it were animate. It is perhaps specially the case with
Poets: for these entertain very great affection for their poems, loving
Them as their own children. It is to this kind of thing I should be
Inclined to compare the case of benefactors: for the object of their
Kindness is their own work, and so they love this more than this loves
Its creator

And the account of this is that existence is to all a thing choiceworthy
And an object of affection; now we exist by acts of working, that is, by
Living and acting; he then that has created a given work exists, it may
Be said, by his act of working: therefore he loves his work because he
Loves existence. And this is natural, for the work produced displays in
Act what existed before potentially

Then again, the benefactor has a sense of honour in right of his action
So that he may well take pleasure in him in whom this resides; but to
Him who has received the benefit there is nothing honourable in respect
Of his benefactor, only something advantageous which is both less
Pleasant and less the object of Friendship

Again, pleasure is derived from the actual working out of a present
Action, from the anticipation of a future one, and from the recollection
Of a past one: but the highest pleasure and special object of affection
Is that which attends on the actual working. Now the benefactor's work
Abides (for the honourable is enduring), but the advantage of him who
Has received the kindness passes away

Again, there is pleasure in recollecting honourable actions, but in
Recollecting advantageous ones there is none at all or much less (by the
Way though, the contrary is true of the expectation of advantage)

Further, the entertaining the feeling of Friendship is like acting on
Another; but being the object of the feeling is like being acted upon

So then, entertaining the sentiment of Friendship, and all feelings
Connected with it, attend on those who, in the given case of a
Benefaction, are the superior party

Once more: all people value most what has cost them much labour in the
Production; for instance, people who have themselves made their money
Are fonder of it than those who have inherited it: and receiving
Kindness is, it seems, unlaborious, but doing it is laborious. And this
Is the reason why the female parents are most fond of their offspring;
For their part in producing them is attended with most labour, and they
Know more certainly that they are theirs. This feeling would seem also
To belong to benefactors

[Sidenote: VIII] A question is also raised as to whether it is right
To love one's Self best, or some one else: because men find fault with
Those who love themselves best, and call them in a disparaging way
Lovers of Self; and the bad man is thought to do everything he does
For his own sake merely, and the more so the more depraved he is;
Accordingly men reproach him with never doing anything unselfish:
Whereas the good man acts from a sense of honour (and the more so the
Better man he is), and for his friend's sake, and is careless of his own
Interest

[Sidenote: 1168_b_] But with these theories facts are at variance, and
Not unnaturally: for it is commonly said also that a man is to love most
Him who is most his friend, and he is most a friend who wishes good to
Him to whom he wishes it for that man's sake even though no one knows
Now these conditions, and in fact all the rest by which a friend is
Characterised, belong specially to each individual in respect of his
Self: for we have said before that all the friendly feelings are derived
To others from those which have Self primarily for their object. And all
The current proverbs support this view; for instance, "one soul," "the
Goods of friends are common," "equality is a tie of Friendship," "the
Knee is nearer than the shin." For all these things exist specially with
Reference to a man's own Self: he is specially a friend to himself and
So he is bound to love himself the most

It is with good reason questioned which of the two parties one should
Follow, both having plausibility on their side. Perhaps then, in respect
Of theories of this kind, the proper course is to distinguish and define
How far each is true, and in what way. If we could ascertain the sense
In which each uses the term "Self-loving," this point might be cleared
Up

Well now, they who use it disparagingly give the name to those who
In respect of wealth, and honours, and pleasures of the body, give to
Themselves the larger share: because the mass of mankind grasp after
These and are earnest about them as being the best things; which is the
Reason why they are matters of contention. They who are covetous in
Regard to these gratify their lusts and passions in general, that is to
Say the irrational part of their soul: now the mass of mankind are so
Disposed, for which reason the appellation has taken its rise from that
Mass which is low and bad. Of course they are justly reproached who are
Self-loving in this sense

And that the generality of men are accustomed to apply the term to
Denominate those who do give such things to themselves is quite plain:
Suppose, for instance, that a man were anxious to do, more than other
Men, acts of justice, or self-mastery, or any other virtuous acts, and
In general, were to secure to himself that which is abstractedly noble
And honourable, no one would call him Self-loving, nor blame him

Yet might such an one be judged to be more truly Self-loving: certainly
He gives to himself the things which are most noble and most good
And gratifies that Principle of his nature which is most rightfully
Authoritative, and obeys it in everything: and just as that which
Possesses the highest authority is thought to constitute a Community or
Any other system, so also in the case of Man: and so he is most truly
Self-loving who loves and gratifies this Principle

Again, men are said to have, or to fail of having, self-control
According as the Intellect controls or not, it being plainly implied
Thereby that this Principle constitutes each individual; and people are
Thought to have done of themselves, and voluntarily, those things
Specially which are done with Reason. [Sidenote: 1169_a_]

It is plain, therefore, that this Principle does, either entirely or
Specially constitute the individual man, and that the good man specially
Loves this. For this reason then he must be specially Self-loving, in a
Kind other than that which is reproached, and as far superior to it as
Living in accordance with Reason is to living at the beck and call of
Passion, and aiming at the truly noble to aiming at apparent advantage

Now all approve and commend those who are eminently earnest about
Honourable actions, and if all would vie with one another in respect of
The [Greek: kalhon], and be intent upon doing what is most truly noble
And honourable, society at large would have all that is proper while
Each individual in particular would have the greatest of goods, Virtue
Being assumed to be such

And so the good man ought to be Self-loving: because by doing what is
Noble he will have advantage himself and will do good to others: but the
Bad man ought not to be, because he will harm himself and his neighbours
By following low and evil passions. In the case of the bad man, what he
Ought to do and what he does are at variance, but the good man does what
He ought to do, because all Intellect chooses what is best for itself
And the good man puts himself under the direction of Intellect

Of the good man it is true likewise that he does many things for the
Sake of his friends and his country, even to the extent of dying for
Them, if need be: for money and honours, and, in short, all the good
Things which others fight for, he will throw away while eager to secure
To himself the [Greek: kalhon]: he will prefer a brief and great joy
To a tame and enduring one, and to live nobly for one year rather than
Ordinarily for many, and one great and noble action to many trifling
Ones. And this is perhaps that which befals men who die for their
Country and friends; they choose great glory for themselves: and they
Will lavish their own money that their friends may receive more, for
Hereby the friend gets the money but the man himself the [Greek:
Kalhon]; so, in fact he gives to himself the greater good. It is the
Same with honours and offices; all these things he will give up to his
Friend, because this reflects honour and praise on himself: and so
With good reason is he esteemed a fine character since he chooses the
Honourable before all things else. It is possible also to give up the
Opportunities of action to a friend; and to have caused a friend's doing
A thing may be more noble than having done it one's self

In short, in all praiseworthy things the good man does plainly give to
Himself a larger share of the honourable. [Sidenote: 1169_b_] In this
Sense it is right to be Self-loving, in the vulgar acceptation of the
Term it is not

[Sidenote: IX] A question is raised also respecting the Happy man
Whether he will want Friends, or no?

Some say that they who are blessed and independent have no need of
Friends, for they already have all that is good, and so, as being
Independent, want nothing further: whereas the notion of a friend's
Office is to be as it were a second Self and procure for a man what he
Cannot get by himself: hence the saying

"When Fortune gives us good, what need we Friends?"

On the other hand, it looks absurd, while we are assigning to the Happy
Man all other good things, not to give him Friends, which are, after
All, thought to be the greatest of external goods

Again, if it is more characteristic of a friend to confer than to
Receive kindnesses, and if to be beneficent belongs to the good man and
To the character of virtue, and if it is more noble to confer kindnesses
On friends than strangers, the good man will need objects for his
Benefactions. And out of this last consideration springs a question
Whether the need of Friends be greater in prosperity or adversity, since
The unfortunate man wants people to do him kindnesses and they who are
Fortunate want objects for their kind acts

Again, it is perhaps absurd to make our Happy man a solitary, because
No man would choose the possession of all goods in the world on the
Condition of solitariness, man being a social animal and formed by
Nature for living with others: of course the Happy man has this
Qualification since he has all those things which are good by nature:
And it is obvious that the society of friends and good men must be
Preferable to that of strangers and ordinary people, and we conclude
Therefore, that the Happy man does need Friends

But then, what do they mean whom we quoted first, and how are they
Right? Is it not that the mass of mankind mean by Friends those who are
Useful? and of course the Happy man will not need such because he has
All good things already; neither will he need such as are Friends with
A view to the pleasurable, or at least only to a slight extent; because
His life, being already pleasurable, does not want pleasure imported
From without; and so, since the Happy man does not need Friends of these
Kinds, he is thought not to need any at all

But it may be, this is not true: for it was stated originally, that
Happiness is a kind of Working; now Working plainly is something
That must come into being, not be already there like a mere piece of
Property

[Sidenote: 1170_a_] If then the being happy consists in living and
Working, and the good man's working is in itself excellent and
Pleasurable (as we said at the commencement of the treatise), and if
What is our own reckons among things pleasurable, and if we can view our
Neighbours better than ourselves and their actions better than we
Can our own, then the actions of their Friends who are good men are
Pleasurable to the good; inasmuch as they have both the requisites which
Are naturally pleasant. So the man in the highest state of happiness
Will need Friends of this kind, since he desires to contemplate good
Actions, and actions of his own, which those of his friend, being a good
Man, are. Again, common opinion requires that the Happy man live with
Pleasure to himself: now life is burthensome to a man in solitude, for
It is not easy to work continuously by one's self, but in company with
And in regard to others, it is easier, and therefore the working, being
Pleasurable in itself will be more continuous (a thing which should be
In respect of the Happy man); for the good man, in that he is good takes
Pleasure in the actions which accord with Virtue and is annoyed at those
Which spring from Vice, just as a musical man is pleased with beautiful
Music and annoyed by bad. And besides, as Theognis says, Virtue itself
May be improved by practice, from living with the good

And, upon the following considerations more purely metaphysical, it will
Probably appear that the good friend is naturally choiceworthy to the
Good man. We have said before, that whatever is naturally good is also
In itself good and pleasant to the good man; now the fact of living, so
Far as animals are concerned, is characterised generally by the power
Of sentience, in man it is characterised by that of sentience, or
Of rationality (the faculty of course being referred to the actual
Operation of the faculty, certainly the main point is the actual
Operation of it); so that living seems mainly to consist in the act of
Sentience or exerting rationality: now the fact of living is in itself
One of the things that are good and pleasant (for it is a definite
Totality, and whatever is such belongs to the nature of good), but what
Is naturally good is good to the good man: for which reason it seems
To be pleasant to all. (Of course one must not suppose a life which is
Depraved and corrupted, nor one spent in pain, for that which is such is
Indefinite as are its inherent qualities: however, what is to be said of
Pain will be clearer in what is to follow.)

If then the fact of living is in itself good and pleasant (and this
Appears from the fact that all desire it, and specially those who are
Good and in high happiness; their course of life being most choiceworthy
And their existence most choiceworthy likewise), then also he that sees
Perceives that he sees; and he that hears perceives that he hears; and
He that walks perceives that he walks; and in all the other instances
In like manner there is a faculty which reflects upon and perceives the
Fact that we are working, so that we can perceive that we perceive and
Intellectually know that we intellectually know: but to perceive that we
Perceive or that we intellectually know is to perceive that we exist
Since existence was defined to be perceiving or intellectually knowing
[Sidenote: 1170_b_ Now to perceive that one lives is a thing pleasant
In itself, life being a thing naturally good, and the perceiving of the
Presence in ourselves of things naturally good being pleasant.]

Therefore the fact of living is choiceworthy, and to the good specially
So since existence is good and pleasant to them: for they receive
Pleasure from the internal consciousness of that which in itself is
Good

But the good man is to his friend as to himself, friend being but a name
For a second Self; therefore as his own existence is choiceworthy to
Each so too, or similarly at least, is his friend's existence. But the
Ground of one's own existence being choiceworthy is the perceiving of
One's self being good, any such perception being in itself pleasant
Therefore one ought to be thoroughly conscious of one's friend's
Existence, which will result from living with him, that is sharing in
His words and thoughts: for this is the meaning of the term as applied
To the human species, not mere feeding together as in the case of
Brutes

If then to the man in a high state of happiness existence is in itself
Choiceworthy, being naturally good and pleasant, and so too a friend's
Existence, then the friend also must be among things choiceworthy. But
Whatever is choiceworthy to a man he should have or else he will be in
This point deficient. The man therefore who is to come up to our notion
"Happy" will need good Friends. Are we then to make our friends as
Numerous as possible? or, as in respect of acquaintance it is thought
To have been well said "have not thou many acquaintances yet be not
Without;" so too in respect of Friendship may we adopt the precept, and
Say that a man should not be without friends, nor again have exceeding
Many friends?

Now as for friends who are intended for use, the maxim I have quoted
Will, it seems, fit in exceedingly well, because to requite the services
Of many is a matter of labour, and a whole life would not be long enough
To do this for them. So that, if more numerous than what will suffice
For one's own life, they become officious, and are hindrances in respect
Of living well: and so we do not want them. And again of those who are
To be for pleasure a few are quite enough, just like sweetening in our
Food

X

But of the good are we to make as many as ever we can, or is there
Any measure of the number of friends, as there is of the number to
Constitute a Political Community? I mean, you cannot make one out of ten
Men, and if you increase the number to one hundred thousand it is not
Any longer a Community. However, the number is not perhaps some one
Definite number but any between certain extreme limits

[Sidenote: 1171_a_] Well, of friends likewise there is a limited number
Which perhaps may be laid down to be the greatest number with whom it
Would be possible to keep up intimacy; this being thought to be one of
The greatest marks of Friendship, and it being quite obvious that it is
Not possible to be intimate with many, in other words, to part one's
Self among many. And besides it must be remembered that they also are to
Be friends to one another if they are all to live together: but it is a
Matter of difficulty to find this in many men at once

It comes likewise to be difficult to bring home to one's self the joys
And sorrows of many: because in all probability one would have to
Sympathise at the same time with the joys of this one and the sorrows of
That other

Perhaps then it is well not to endeavour to have very many friends but
So many as are enough for intimacy: because, in fact, it would seem not
To be possible to be very much a friend to many at the same time: and
For the same reason, not to be in love with many objects at the same
Time: love being a kind of excessive Friendship which implies but one
Object: and all strong emotions must be limited in the number towards
Whom they are felt

And if we look to facts this seems to be so: for not many at a time
Become friends in the way of companionship, all the famous Friendships
Of the kind are between _two_ persons: whereas they who have many
Friends, and meet everybody on the footing of intimacy, seem to be
Friends really to no one except in the way of general society; I mean
The characters denominated as over-complaisant

To be sure, in the way merely of society, a man may be a friend to many
Without being necessarily over-complaisant, but being truly good: but
One cannot be a friend to many because of their virtue, and for the
Persons' own sake; in fact, it is a matter for contentment to find even
A few such

XI

Again: are friends most needed in prosperity or in adversity? they are
Required, we know, in both states, because the unfortunate need help and
The prosperous want people to live with and to do kindnesses to: for
They have a desire to act kindly to some one

To have friends is more necessary in adversity, and therefore in this
Case useful ones are wanted; and to have them in prosperity is more
Honourable, and this is why the prosperous want good men for friends, it
Being preferable to confer benefits on, and to live with, these. For the
Very presence of friends is pleasant even in adversity: since men when
Grieved are comforted by the sympathy of their friends

And from this, by the way, the question might be raised, whether it is
That they do in a manner take part of the weight of calamities, or only
That their presence, being pleasurable, and the consciousness of their
Sympathy, make the pain of the sufferer less. However, we will not
Further discuss whether these which have been suggested or some other
Causes produce the relief, at least the effect we speak of is a matter
Of plain fact

[Sidenote: _1171b_] But their presence has probably a mixed effect: I
Mean, not only is the very seeing friends pleasant, especially to one in
Misfortune, and actual help towards lessening the grief is afforded
(the natural tendency of a friend, if he is gifted with tact, being
To comfort by look and word, because he is well acquainted with the
Sufferer's temper and disposition and therefore knows what things give
Him pleasure and pain), but also the perceiving a friend to be grieved
At his misfortunes causes the sufferer pain, because every one avoids
Being cause of pain to his friends. And for this reason they who are
Of a manly nature are cautious not to implicate their friends in their
Pain; and unless a man is exceedingly callous to the pain of others he
Cannot bear the pain which is thus caused to his friends: in short, he
Does not admit men to wail with him, not being given to wail at all:
Women, it is true, and men who resemble women, like to have others to
Groan with them, and love such as friends and sympathisers. But it
Is plain that it is our duty in all things to imitate the highest
Character

On the other hand, the advantages of friends in our prosperity are the
Pleasurable intercourse and the consciousness that they are pleased at
Our good fortune

It would seem, therefore, that we ought to call in friends readily on
Occasion of good fortune, because it is noble to be ready to do good to
Others: but on occasion of bad fortune, we should do so with reluctance;
For we should as little as possible make others share in our ills; on
Which principle goes the saying, "I am unfortunate, let that suffice."
The most proper occasion for calling them in is when with small trouble
Or annoyance to themselves they can be of very great use to the person
Who needs them

But, on the contrary, it is fitting perhaps to go to one's friends in
Their misfortunes unasked and with alacrity (because kindness is the
Friend's office and specially towards those who are in need and who do
Not demand it as a right, this being more creditable and more pleasant
To both); and on occasion of their good fortune to go readily, if we
Can forward it in any way (because men need their friends for this
Likewise), but to be backward in sharing it, any great eagerness to
Receive advantage not being creditable

One should perhaps be cautious not to present the appearance of
Sullenness in declining the sympathy or help of friends, for this
Happens occasionally

It appears then that the presence of friends is, under all
Circumstances, choiceworthy

May we not say then that, as seeing the beloved object is most prized by
Lovers and they choose this sense rather than any of the others because
Love

"Is engendered in the eyes
With gazing fed,"

In like manner intimacy is to friends most choiceworthy, Friendship
Being communion? Again, as a man is to himself so is he to his friend;
Now with respect to himself the perception of his own existence is
Choiceworthy, therefore is it also in respect of his friend

And besides, their Friendship is acted out in intimacy, and so with good
Reason they desire this. And whatever in each man's opinion constitutes
Existence, or whatsoever it is for the sake of which they choose life
Herein they wish their friends to join with them; and so some men drink
Together, others gamble, others join in gymnastic exercises or hunting
Others study philosophy together: in each case spending their days
Together in that which they like best of all things in life, for since
They wish to be intimate with their friends they do and partake in those
Things whereby they think to attain this object

Therefore the Friendship of the wicked comes to be depraved; for, being
Unstable, they share in what is bad and become depraved in being made
Like to one another: but the Friendship of the good is good, growing
With their intercourse; they improve also, as it seems, by repeated
Acts, and by mutual correction, for they receive impress from one
Another in the points which give them pleasure; whence says the poet

"Thou from the good, good things shalt surely learn."

Here then we will terminate our discourse of Friendship. The next thing
Is to go into the subject of Pleasure

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