Virtue

Virtue (Latin: virtus, Ancient Greek: ἀρετή "arete") is moral excellence. A virtue is a trait or quality that is deemed to be morally good and thus is valued as a foundation of principle and good moral being. Personal virtues are characteristics valued as promoting collective and individual greatness. In other words, it is a behavior that shows high moral standards. Doing what is right and avoiding what is wrong. The opposite of virtue is vice.

The four classic cardinal virtues in Christianity are temperance, prudence, courage, and justice. Christianity derives the three theological virtues of faith, hope and love (charity) from 1 Corinthians. Together these make up the seven virtues. Buddhism's four brahmavihara ("Divine States") can be regarded as virtues in the European sense. The Japanese Bushidō code is characterized by up to ten virtues, including rectitude, courage, and benevolence.

Raphael - Cardinal and Theological Virtues
Cardinal and Theological Virtues by Raphael, 1511

Etymology

The ancient Romans used the Latin word virtus (derived from vir, their word for man) to refer to all of the "excellent qualities of men, including physical strength, valorous conduct, and moral rectitude." The French words vertu and virtu came from this Latin root. In the 13th century, the word virtue was "borrowed into English".[1]

Ancient Egypt

Maat
Maat, to ancient Egyptians, personified the virtue of truth and justice. Her feather represents truth.[2]

During Egyptian civilization, Maat or Ma'at (thought to have been pronounced *[muʔ.ʕat]), also spelled māt or mayet, was the ancient Egyptian concept of truth, balance, order, law, morality, and justice. Maat was also personified as a goddess regulating the stars, seasons, and the actions of both mortals and the deities. The deities set the order of the universe from chaos at the moment of creation. Her (ideological) counterpart was Isfet, who symbolized chaos, lies, and injustice.[3][4]

Greco-Roman antiquity

Arete - Areté- Éfeso
Personification of virtue (Greek Ἀρετή) in Celsus Library in Ephesos, Turkey

Platonic virtue

The four classic cardinal virtues are:[5]

  • temperance: σωφροσύνη (sōphrosynē)
  • prudence: φρόνησις (phronēsis)
  • courage: ἀνδρεία (andreia)
  • justice: δικαιοσύνη (dikaiosynē)

This enumeration is traced to Greek philosophy and was listed by Plato in addition to piety: ὁσιότης (hosiotēs), with the exception that wisdom replaced prudence as virtue.[6] Some scholars[7] consider either of the above four virtue combinations as mutually reducible and therefore not cardinal.

It is unclear whether multiple virtues were of later construct, and whether Plato subscribed to a unified view of virtues.[8] In Protagoras and Meno, for example, he states that the separate virtues cannot exist independently and offers as evidence the contradictions of acting with wisdom, yet in an unjust way; or acting with bravery (fortitude), yet without wisdom.

Aristotelian virtue

In his work Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle defined a virtue as a point between a deficiency and an excess of a trait.[9] The point of greatest virtue lies not in the exact middle, but at a golden mean sometimes closer to one extreme than the other. However, the virtuous action is not simply the "mean" (mathematically speaking) between two opposite extremes. As Aristotle says in the Nicomachean Ethics: "at the right times, about the right things, towards the right people, for the right end, and in the right way, is the intermediate and best condition, and this is proper to virtue."[10] This is not simply splitting the difference between two extremes. For example, generosity is a virtue between the two extremes of miserliness and being profligate. Further examples include: courage between cowardice and foolhardiness, and confidence between self-deprecation and vanity. In Aristotle's sense, virtue is excellence at being human.

Prudence and virtue

Seneca, the Roman Stoic, said that perfect prudence is indistinguishable from perfect virtue. Thus, in considering all consequences, a prudent person would act in the same way as a virtuous person. The same rationale was expressed by Plato in Meno, when he wrote that people only act in ways that they perceive will bring them maximum good. It is the lack of wisdom that results in the making of a bad choice instead of a prudent one. In this way, wisdom is the central part of virtue. Plato realized that because virtue was synonymous with wisdom it could be taught, a possibility he had earlier discounted. He then added "correct belief" as an alternative to knowledge, proposing that knowledge is merely correct belief that has been thought through and "tethered".

Roman virtues

The term "virtue" itself is derived from the Latin "virtus" (the personification of which was the deity Virtus), and had connotations of "manliness", "honour", worthiness of deferential respect, and civic duty as both citizen and soldier. This virtue was but one of many virtues which Romans of good character were expected to exemplify and pass on through the generations, as part of the Mos Maiorum; ancestral traditions which defined "Roman-ness". Romans distinguished between the spheres of private and public life, and thus, virtues were also divided between those considered to be in the realm of private family life (as lived and taught by the paterfamilias), and those expected of an upstanding Roman citizen.

Most Roman concepts of virtue were also personified as a numinous deity. The primary Roman virtues, both public and private, were:

  • Abundantia: "Abundance, Plenty" The ideal of there being enough food and prosperity for all segments of society. A public virtue.
  • Auctoritas – "spiritual authority" – the sense of one's social standing, built up through experience, Pietas, and Industria. This was considered to be essential for a magistrate's ability to enforce law and order.
  • Comitas – "humour" – ease of manner, courtesy, openness, and friendliness.
  • Constantia – "perseverance" – military stamina, as well as general mental and physical endurance in the face of hardship.
  • Clementia – "mercy" – mildness and gentleness, and the ability to set aside previous transgressions.
  • Dignitas – "dignity" – a sense of self-worth, personal self-respect and self-esteem.
  • Disciplina – "discipline" – considered essential to military excellence; also connotes adherence to the legal system, and upholding the duties of citizenship.
  • Fides - "good faith" - mutual trust and reciprocal dealings in both government and commerce (public affairs), a breach meant legal and religious consequences.
  • Firmitas – "tenacity" – strength of mind, and the ability to stick to one's purpose at hand without wavering.
  • Frugalitas – "frugality" – economy and simplicity in lifestyle, want what we must have and not what we need, regardless of one’s material possessions, authority or wants one has, an individual always has a degree of honour. Frugality is to eschew what has no practical use if it is in disuse and if it comes at the expense of the other virtues.
  • Gravitas – "gravity" – a sense of the importance of the matter at hand; responsibility, and being earnest.
  • Honestas – "respectability" – the image and honor that one presents as a respectable member of society.
  • Humanitas – "humanity" – refinement, civilization, learning, and generally being cultured.
  • Industria – "industriousness" – hard work.
  • Innocencia - "selfless" - Roman charity, always give without expectation of recognition, always give while expecting no personal gain, incorruptibility is aversion towards placing all power and influence from public office to increase personal gain in order to enjoy our personal or public life and deprive our community of their health, dignity and our sense of morality, that is an affront to every Roman.
  • Laetitia - "Joy, Gladness" - The celebration of thanksgiving, often of the resolution of crisis, a public virtue.
  • Nobilitas - "Nobility" - Man of fine appearance, deserving of honor, highly esteemed social rank, and, or, nobility of birth, a public virtue.
  • Justitia – "justice" – sense of moral worth to an action; personified by the goddess Iustitia, the Roman counterpart to the Greek Themis.
  • Pietas – "dutifulness" – more than religious piety; a respect for the natural order: socially, politically, and religiously. Includes ideas of patriotism, fulfillment of pious obligation to the gods, and honoring other human beings, especially in terms of the patron and client relationship, considered essential to an orderly society.
  • Prudentia – "prudence" – foresight, wisdom, and personal discretion.
  • Salubritas – "wholesomeness" – general health and cleanliness, personified in the deity Salus.
  • Severitas – "sternness" – self-control, considered to be tied directly to the virtue of gravitas.
  • Veritas – "truthfulness" – honesty in dealing with others, personified by the goddess Veritas. Veritas, being the mother of Virtus, was considered the root of all virtue; a person living an honest life was bound to be virtuous.
  • Virtus – "manliness" – valor, excellence, courage, character, and worth. 'Vir' is Latin for "man".

The Seven Heavenly Virtues

In 410 CE, Aurelius Prudentius Clemens listed seven "heavenly virtues" in his book Psychomachia (Battle of Souls) which is an allegorical story of conflict between vices and virtues. The virtues depicted were:

  • chastity
  • temperance
  • charity
  • diligence
  • patience
  • kindness
  • humility.[11]

Chivalric virtues in medieval Europe

In the 8th Century, upon the occasion of his coronation as Holy Roman Emperor Charlemagne published a list of knightly virtues:

  • Love God
  • Love your neighbour
  • Give alms to the poor
  • Entertain strangers
  • Visit the sick
  • Be merciful to prisoners
  • Do ill to no man, nor consent unto such
  • Forgive as ye hope to be forgiven
  • Redeem the captive
  • Help the oppressed
  • Defend the cause of the widow and orphan
  • Render righteous judgement
  • Do not consent to any wrong
  • Persevere not in wrath
  • Shun excess in eating and drinking
  • Be humble and kind
  • Serve your liege lord faithfully
  • Do not steal
  • Do not perjure yourself, nor let others do so
  • Envy, hatred and violence separate men from the Kingdom of God
  • Defend the Church and promote her cause.[12]

Religious traditions

Atheism

Virtues are philosophical concepts which have a singular focus and inform the beliefs and behaviors of people.

Judaism

Loving God and obeying his laws, in particular the Ten Commandments, are central to Jewish conceptions of virtue. Wisdom is personified in the first eight chapters of the Book of Proverbs and is not only the source of virtue but is depicted as the first and best creation of God (Proverbs 8:12-31).

A classic articulation of the Golden Rule came from the first century Rabbi Hillel the Elder. Renowned in the Jewish tradition as a sage and a scholar, he is associated with the development of the Mishnah and the Talmud and, as such, one of the most important figures in Jewish history. Asked for a summary of the Jewish religion in the most concise terms, Hillel replied (reputedly while standing on one leg): "That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow. That is the whole Torah. The rest is commentary; go and learn."[13]

Christianity

Stiftskirche Niederhaslach Glasfenster (Kampf der Tugenden mit dem Laster)
Virtues fighting vices, stained glass window (14th century) in the Niederhaslach Church

In Christianity, the three theological virtues are faith, hope and love, a list which comes from 1 Corinthians 13:13 (νυνὶ δὲ μένει πίστις pistis (faith), ἐλπίς elpis (hope), ἀγάπη agape (love), τὰ τρία ταῦτα· μείζων δὲ τούτων ἡ ἀγάπη). The same chapter describes love as the greatest of the three, and further defines love as "patient, kind, not envious, boastful, arrogant, or rude." (The Christian virtue of love is sometimes called charity and at other times a Greek word agape is used to contrast the love of God and the love of humankind from other types of love such as friendship or physical affection.)

Christian scholars frequently add the four Greek cardinal virtues (prudence, justice, temperance, and courage) to the theological virtues to give the seven virtues; for example, these seven are the ones described in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, sections 1803–1829.

The Bible mentions additional virtues, such as in the "Fruit of the Holy Spirit," found in Galatians 5:22-23: "By contrast, the fruit of the Spirit it is benevolent-love: joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, benevolence, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is absolutely no law against such a thing."[14]

The medieval and renaissance periods saw a number of models of sin listing the seven deadly sins and the virtues opposed to each.

(Sin) Latin Virtue (Latin)
Pride Superbia Humility Humilitas
Envy Invidia Kindness Benevolentia
Gluttony Gula Temperance Temperantia
Lust Luxuria Chastity Castitas
Wrath Ira Patience Patientia
Greed Avaritia Charity Caritas
Sloth Acedia Diligence Industria

Islam

In Islam, the Qur'an is believed to be the literal word of God, and the definitive description of virtue while Muhammad is considered an ideal example of virtue in human form. The foundation of Islamic understanding of virtue was the understanding and interpretation of the Qur'an and the practices of Muhammad. Its meaning has always been in context of active submission to God performed by the community in unison. The motive force is the notion that believers are to "enjoin that which is virtuous and forbid that which is vicious" (al-amr bi-l-maʿrūf wa-n-nahy ʿani-l-munkar) in all spheres of life (Quran 3:110). Another key factor is the belief that mankind has been granted the faculty to discern God's will and to abide by it. This faculty most crucially involves reflecting over the meaning of existence. Therefore, regardless of their environment, humans are believed to have a moral responsibility to submit to God's will. Muhammad's preaching produced a "radical change in moral values based on the sanctions of the new religion and the present religion, and fear of God and of the Last Judgment". Later Muslim scholars expanded the religious ethics of the scriptures in immense detail.[15]

In the Hadith (Islamic traditions), it is reported by An-Nawwas bin Sam'an:

The Prophet Muhammad said, "Virtue is good manner, and sin is that which creates doubt and you do not like people to know it."

Wabisah bin Ma’bad reported:

“I went to Messenger of God and he asked me: “Have you come to inquire about virtue?” I replied in the affirmative. Then he said: “Ask your heart regarding it. Virtue is that which contents the soul and comforts the heart, and sin is that which causes doubts and perturbs the heart, even if people pronounce it lawful and give you verdicts on such matters again and again.”

— Ahmad and Ad-Darmi

Virtue, as seen in opposition to sin, is termed thawāb (spiritual merit or reward) but there are other Islamic terms to describe virtue such as faḍl ("bounty"), taqwa ("piety") and ṣalāḥ ("righteousness"). For Muslims fulfilling the rights of others are valued as an important building block of Islam. According to Muslim beliefs, God will forgive individual sins but the bad treatment of people and injustice with others will only be pardoned by them and not by God.

Jainism

India, madhya pradesh, jina parshvanatha dalla tempèesta, 600-700
Parshwanatha, the torch bearer of ahimsa.

In Jainism, attainment of enlightenment is possible only if the seeker possesses certain virtues. All Jains are supposed to take up the five vows of ahimsa (non violence), satya (truthfulness), asteya (non stealing), aparigraha (non attachment) and brahmacharya (celibacy) before becoming a monk. These vows are laid down by the Tirthankaras. Other virtues which are supposed to be followed by both monks as well as laypersons include forgiveness, humility, self-restraint and straightforwardness. These vows assists the seeker to escape from the karmic bondages thereby escaping the cycle of birth and death to attain liberation.[16]

Hinduism

Virtue is a much debated[17] and an evolving concept in ancient scriptures of Hinduism.[18][19] The essence, need and value of virtue is explained in Hindu philosophy as something that cannot be imposed, but something that is realized and voluntarily lived up to by each individual. For example, Apastamba explained it thus: "virtue and vice do not go about saying - here we are!; neither the Gods, Gandharvas, nor ancestors can convince us - this is right, this is wrong; virtue is an elusive concept, it demands careful and sustained reflection by every man and woman before it can become part of one's life.[20]

Virtues lead to punya (Sanskrit: पुण्य,[21] holy living) in Hindu literature; while vices lead to pap (Sanskrit: पाप,[22] sin). Sometimes, the word punya is used interchangeably with virtue.[23]

The virtues that constitute a dharmic life - that is a moral, ethical, virtuous life - evolve in vedas and upanishads. Over time, new virtues were conceptualized and added by ancient Hindu scholars, some replaced, others merged. For example, Manusamhita initially listed ten virtues necessary for a human being to live a dharmic life: Dhriti (courage), Kshama (forgiveness), Dama (temperance), Asteya (Non-covetousness/Non-stealing), Saucha (inner purity), Indriyani-graha (control of senses), dhi (reflective prudence), vidya (wisdom), satyam (truthfulness), akrodha (freedom from anger).[24] In later verses, this list was reduced to five virtues by the same scholar, by merging and creating a more broader concept. The shorter list of virtues became: Ahimsa (Non-violence), Dama (self restraint), Asteya (Non-covetousness/Non-stealing), Saucha (inner purity), Satyam (truthfulness).[25][26]

The Bhagavad Gita - considered one of the epitomes of historic Hindu discussion of virtues and an allegorical debate on what is right and what is wrong - argues some virtues are not necessarily always absolute, but sometimes relational; for example, it explains a virtue such as Ahimsa must be re-examined when one is faced with war or violence from the aggressiveness, immaturity or ignorance of others.[27][28][29]

Buddhism

Buddhist practice as outlined in the Noble Eightfold Path can be regarded as a progressive list of virtues.

  1. Right View - Realizing the Four Noble Truths (samyag-vyāyāma, sammā-vāyāma).
  2. Right Mindfulness - Mental ability to see things for what they are with clear consciousness (samyak-smṛti, sammā-sati).
  3. Right Concentration - Wholesome one-pointedness of mind (samyak-samādhi, sammā-samādhi).

Buddhism's four brahmavihara ("Divine States") can be more properly regarded as virtues in the European sense. They are:

  1. Metta/Maitri: loving-kindness towards all; the hope that a person will be well; loving kindness is the wish that all sentient beings, without any exception, be happy.[30]
  2. Karuṇā: compassion; the hope that a person's sufferings will diminish; compassion is the wish for all sentient beings to be free from suffering.[30]
  3. Mudita: altruistic joy in the accomplishments of a person, oneself or other; sympathetic joy is the wholesome attitude of rejoicing in the happiness and virtues of all sentient beings.[30]
  4. Upekkha/Upeksha: equanimity, or learning to accept both loss and gain, praise and blame, success and failure with detachment, equally, for oneself and for others. Equanimity means not to distinguish between friend, enemy or stranger, but to regard every sentient being as equal. It is a clear-minded tranquil state of mind - not being overpowered by delusions, mental dullness or agitation.[31]

There are also the Paramitas ("perfections"), which are the culmination of having acquired certain virtues. In Theravada Buddhism's canonical Buddhavamsa[32] there are Ten Perfections (dasa pāramiyo). In Mahayana Buddhism, the Lotus Sutra (Saddharmapundarika), there are Six Perfections; while in the Ten Stages (Dasabhumika) Sutra, four more Paramitas are listed.

Bahá'í faith

In the Bahá'í Faith, virtues are direct spiritual qualities that the human soul possesses, inherited from the world of God. The development and manifestation of these virtues is the theme of the Hidden Words of Bahá'u'lláh and are discussed in great detail as the underpinnings of a divinely-inspired society by `Abdu'l-Bahá in such texts as The Secret of Divine Civilization.

Daoism

"Virtue", translated from Chinese de (), is also an important concept in Chinese philosophy, particularly Daoism. De (Chinese: ; pinyin: ; Wade–Giles: te) originally meant normative "virtue" in the sense of "personal character; inner strength; integrity", but semantically changed to moral "virtue; kindness; morality". Note the semantic parallel for English virtue, with an archaic meaning of "inner potency; divine power" (as in "by virtue of") and a modern one of "moral excellence; goodness".

In early periods of Confucianism, moral manifestations of "virtue" include ren ("humanity"), xiao ("filial piety"), and li ("proper behavior, performance of rituals"). The notion of ren - according to Simon Leys - means "humanity" and "goodness". Ren originally had the archaic meaning in the Confucian Book of Poems of "virility", but progressively took on shades of ethical meaning.[33] Some scholars consider the virtues identified in early Confucianism as non-theistic philosophy.[34]

The Daoist concept of De, compared to Confucianism, is more subtle, pertaining to the "virtue" or ability that an individual realizes by following the Dao ("the Way"). One important normative value in much of Chinese thinking is that one's social status should result from the amount of virtue that one demonstrates, rather than from one's birth. In the Analects, Confucius explains de as follows: "He who exercises government by means of his virtue may be compared to the north polar star, which keeps its place and all the stars turn towards it."[35] In later periods, particularly from the Tang dynasty period, Confucianism as practiced, absorbed and melded its own concepts of virtues with those from Daoism and Buddhism.[34]

Samurai virtue

In Hagakure, Yamamoto Tsunetomo encapsulates his views on 'virtue' in the four vows he makes daily:[36]

  1. Never to be outdone in the way of the samurai or bushido.
  2. To be of good use to the master.
  3. To be filial to my parents.
  4. To manifest great compassion and act for the sake of Man.

Yamamoto goes on to say:

If one dedicates these four vows to the gods and Buddhas every morning, he will have the strength of two men and never slip backward. One must edge forward like the inchworm, bit by bit. The gods and Buddhas, too, first started with a vow.

The Bushidō code is typified by seven virtues:[37]

  • Rectitude (義,gi)
  • Courage (勇,yuu)
  • Benevolence (仁,jin)
  • Respect (礼,rei)
  • Honesty (誠,sei)
  • Honor (誉,yo)
  • Loyalty (忠,chuu)

Others that are sometimes added to these:

  • Filial piety (孝,kō)
  • Wisdom (智,chi)
  • Care for the aged (悌,tei)

Philosophers' views

இலண்டன் திருவள்ளுவர்
Valluvar (Statue at SOAS, University of London).

Valluvar

While religious scriptures generally consider dharma or aṟam (the Tamil term for virtue) as a divine virtue, Valluvar describes it as a way of life rather than any spiritual observance, a way of harmonious living that leads to universal happiness.[38] For this reason, Valluvar keeps aṟam as the cornerstone throughout the writing of the Kural literature.[39] Valluvar considered justice as a facet or product of aram. While ancient Greek philosophers such as Plato, Aristotle, and their descendants opined that justice cannot be defined and that it was a divine mystery, Valluvar positively suggested that a divine origin is not required to define the concept of justice. In the words of V. R. Nedunchezhiyan, justice according to Valluvar "dwells in the minds of those who have knowledge of the standard of right and wrong; so too deceit dwells in the minds which breed fraud."[38]

René Descartes

For the Rationalist philosopher René Descartes, virtue consists in the correct reasoning that should guide our actions. Men should seek the sovereign good that Descartes, following Zeno, identifies with virtue, as this produces a solid blessedness or pleasure. For Epicurus the sovereign good was pleasure, and Descartes says that in fact this is not in contradiction with Zeno's teaching, because virtue produces a spiritual pleasure, that is better than bodily pleasure. Regarding Aristotle's opinion that happiness depends on the goods of fortune, Descartes does not deny that these goods contribute to happiness, but remarks that they are in great proportion outside one's own control, whereas one's mind is under one's complete control.[40]

Immanuel Kant

Immanuel Kant, in his Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime, expresses true virtue as different from what commonly is known about this moral trait. In Kant's view, to be goodhearted, benevolent and sympathetic is not regarded as true virtue. The only aspect that makes a human truly virtuous is to behave in accordance with moral principles. Kant presents an example for more clarification; suppose that you come across a needy person in the street; if your sympathy leads you to help that person, your response does not illustrate your virtue. In this example, since you do not afford helping all needy ones, you have behaved unjustly, and it is out of the domain of principles and true virtue. Kant applies the approach of four temperaments to distinguish truly virtuous people. According to Kant, among all people with diverse temperaments, a person with melancholy frame of mind is the most virtuous whose thoughts, words and deeds are one of principles.

Friedrich Nietzsche

Friedrich Nietzsche's view of virtue is based on the idea of an order of rank among people. For Nietzsche, the virtues of the strong are seen as vices by the weak and slavish, thus Nietzsche's virtue ethics is based on his distinction between master morality and slave morality. Nietzsche promotes the virtues of those he calls "higher men", people like Goethe and Beethoven. The virtues he praises in them are their creative powers (“the men of great creativity” - “the really great men according to my understanding” (WP 957)). According to Nietzsche these higher types are solitary, pursue a "unifying project", revere themselves and are healthy and life-affirming.[41] Because mixing with the herd makes one base, the higher type “strives instinctively for a citadel and a secrecy where he is saved from the crowd, the many, the great majority…” (BGE 26). The 'Higher type' also "instinctively seeks heavy responsibilities" (WP 944) in the form of an "organizing idea" for their life, which drives them to artistic and creative work and gives them psychological health and strength.[41] The fact that the higher types are "healthy" for Nietzsche does not refer to physical health as much as a psychological resilience and fortitude. Finally, a Higher type affirms life because he is willing to accept the eternal return of his life and affirm this forever and unconditionally.

In the last section of Beyond Good and Evil, Nietzsche outlines his thoughts on the noble virtues and places solitude as one of the highest virtues:

And to keep control over your four virtues: courage, insight, sympathy, solitude. Because solitude is a virtue for us, since it is a sublime inclination and impulse to cleanliness which shows that contact between people (“society”) inevitably makes things unclean. Somewhere, sometime, every community makes people – “base.” (BGE §284)

Nietzsche also sees truthfulness as a virtue:

Genuine honesty, assuming that this is our virtue and we cannot get rid of it, we free spirits – well then, we will want to work on it with all the love and malice at our disposal and not get tired of ‘perfecting’ ourselves in our virtue, the only one we have left: may its glory come to rest like a gilded, blue evening glow of mockery over this aging culture and its dull and dismal seriousness! (Beyond Good and Evil, §227)

Benjamin Franklin

Seal of Virginia
Virtue, spear in hand, with her foot on the prostrate form of Tyranny on the Great Seal of Virginia

These are the virtues[42] that Benjamin Franklin used to develop what he called 'moral perfection'. He had a checklist in a notebook to measure each day how he lived up to his virtues.

They became known through Benjamin Franklin's autobiography.

  1. Temperance: Eat not to Dullness. Drink not to Elevation.
  2. Silence: Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself. Avoid trifling Conversation.
  3. Order: Let all your Things have their Places. Let each Part of your Business have its Time.
  4. Resolution: Resolve to perform what you ought. Perform without fail what you resolve.
  5. Frugality: Make no Expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e. Waste nothing.
  6. Industry: Lose no Time. Be always employed in something useful. Cut off all unnecessary Actions.
  7. Sincerity: Use no hurtful Deceit. Think innocently and justly; and, if you speak, speak accordingly.
  8. Justice: Wrong none, by doing Injuries or omitting the Benefits that are your Duty.
  9. Moderation: Avoid Extremes. Forbear resenting Injuries so much as you think they deserve.
  10. Cleanliness: Tolerate no Uncleanness in Body, Clothes or Habitation.
  11. Tranquility: Be not disturbed at Trifles, or at Accidents common or unavoidable.
  12. Chastity: Rarely use Venery but for Health or Offspring; Never to Dullness, Weakness, or the Injury of your own or another's Peace or Reputation.
  13. Humility: Imitate Jesus and Socrates.

Contemporary views

Virtues as emotions

Marc Jackson in his book Emotion and Psyche puts forward a new development of the virtues. He identifies the virtues as what he calls the good emotions "The first group consisting of love, kindness, joy, faith, awe and pity is good"[43] These virtues differ from older accounts of the virtues because they are not character traits expressed by action, but emotions that are to be felt and developed by feeling not acting.

In Objectivism

Ayn Rand held that her morality, the morality of reason, contained a single axiom: existence exists, and a single choice: to live. All values and virtues proceed from these. To live, man must hold three fundamental values that one develops and achieves in life: Reason, Purpose, and Self-Esteem. A value is "that which one acts to gain and/or keep ... and the virtue[s] [are] the act[ions] by which one gains and/or keeps it." The primary virtue in Objectivist ethics is rationality, which as Rand meant it is "the recognition and acceptance of reason as one's only source of knowledge, one's only judge of values and one's only guide to action."[44] These values are achieved by passionate and consistent action and the virtues are the policies for achieving those fundamental values.[45] Ayn Rand describes seven virtues: rationality, productiveness, pride, independence, integrity, honesty and justice. The first three represent the three primary virtues that correspond to the three fundamental values, whereas the final four are derived from the virtue of rationality. She claims that virtue is not an end in itself, that virtue is not its own reward nor sacrificial fodder for the reward of evil, that life is the reward of virtue and happiness is the goal and the reward of life. Man has a single basic choice: to think or not, and that is the gauge of his virtue. Moral perfection is an unbreached rationality, not the degree of your intelligence but the full and relentless use of your mind, not the extent of your knowledge but the acceptance of reason as an absolute.[46]

In modern psychology

Christopher Peterson and Martin Seligman, two leading researchers in positive psychology, recognizing the deficiency inherent in psychology's tendency to focus on dysfunction rather than on what makes a healthy and stable personality, set out to develop a list of "Character Strengths and Virtues".[47] After three years of study, 24 traits (classified into six broad areas of virtue) were identified, having "a surprising amount of similarity across cultures and strongly indicat[ing] a historical and cross-cultural convergence."[48] These six categories of virtue are courage, justice, humanity, temperance, transcendence, and wisdom.[49] Some psychologists suggest that these virtues are adequately grouped into fewer categories; for example, the same 24 traits have been grouped into simply: Cognitive Strengths, Temperance Strengths, and Social Strengths.[50]

Vice as opposite

The opposite of a virtue is a vice. Vice is a habitual, repeated practice of wrongdoing. One way of organizing the vices is as the corruption of the virtues.

As Aristotle noted, however, the virtues can have several opposites. Virtues can be considered the mean between two extremes, as the Latin maxim dictates in medio stat virtus - in the centre lies virtue. For instance, both cowardice and rashness are opposites of courage; contrary to prudence are both over-caution and insufficient caution; the opposites of pride (a virtue) are undue humility and excessive vanity. A more "modern" virtue, tolerance, can be considered the mean between the two extremes of narrow-mindedness on the one hand and over-acceptance on the other. Vices can therefore be identified as the opposites of virtues - but with the caveat that each virtue could have many different opposites, all distinct from each other.

See also

References

  1. ^ ’’The Merriam-Webster New Book of Word Histories’’. Merriam-Webster Inc., 1991. p. 496
  2. ^ Karenga, M. (2004), Maat, the moral ideal in ancient Egypt: A study in classical African ethics, Routledge
  3. ^ Norman Rufus Colin Cohn (1993). Cosmos, Caos and the World to Come: The Ancient Roots of Apocalyptic Faith. ISBN 978-0-300-05598-6.
  4. ^ Jan Assmann, Translated by Rodney Livingstone, Religion and Cultural Memory: Ten Studies, Stanford University Press, 2006, ISBN 0-8047-4523-4
  5. ^ Stanley B. Cunningham (2002), Review of Virtues and Vices and Other Essays in Moral Philosophy, Dialogue, Volume 21, Issue 01, March 1982, pp. 133–37
  6. ^ Den Uyl, D. J. (1991), The virtue of prudence, P. Lang., in Studies in Moral Philosophy. Vol. 5 General Editor: John Kekes
  7. ^ Carr, D. (1988), The cardinal virtues and Plato's moral psychologym The Philosophical Quarterly, 38(151), pp. 186–200
  8. ^ Gregory Vlastos, The Unity of the Virtues in the "Protagoras", The Review of Metaphysics, Vol. 25, No. 3 (Mar., 1972), pages 415-458
  9. ^ Aristotle. "Sparknotes.com". Sparknotes.com. Retrieved 2014-01-01.
  10. ^ "Nicomachean Ethics". Home.wlu.edu. Archived from the original on 2013-10-04. Retrieved 2014-01-01.
  11. ^ "Prudentius Seven Heavenly Virtues". Changing Minds. Retrieved 17 November 2018.
  12. ^ "The origins of Chivalry". Baronage. Retrieved 17 November 2018.
  13. ^ Babylonian Talmud, tractate Shabbat 31a. See also the ethic of reciprocity or "The Golden rule."
  14. ^ Barbara Aland, Kurt Aland, Matthew Black, Carlo M. Martini, Bruce M. Metzger and Allen Wikgren, The Greek New Testament, 4th ed. (Federal Republic of Germany: United Bible Societies, 1993, c1979)
  15. ^ Bearman et al. 2009, Akhlaq
  16. ^ https://medium.com/bliss-of-wisdom/जैन-धर्म-के-पाँच-मूलभूत-सिद्धांत-bfc9b756d509
  17. ^ Roderick Hindery (2004), Comparative Ethics in Hindu and Buddhist Traditions, ISBN 978-8120808669; pages 268-72;
    • Quote: "(In Hinduism), srutis did not pretend to deal with all situations or irregularities in the moral life, leaving these matters to human reasons (Mbh Xii.109); Accordingly, that again which is virtue may, according to time and place, be sin (...); Under certain conditions, acts that are apparently evil (such as violence) can be permitted if they produce consequences that are good (protection of children and women in self-defense when the society is attacked in war)
    • Quote: "(The Hindu scripture) notes the interrelationship of several virtues, consequentially. Anger springs from covetousness; (the vice of) envy disappears in consequence of (the virtues) of compassion and knowledge of self (Mbh Xii.163);
  18. ^ Crawford, S. Cromwell (1982), The evolution of Hindu ethical ideals, Asian Studies Program, University of Hawaii Press
  19. ^ Becker and Becker (2001), Encyclopedia of Ethics, ISBN 978-0415936729, 2nd Edition, Routledge, pages 845-848
  20. ^ Phillip Wagoner, see Foreword, in Srinivasan, Dharma: Hindu Approach to a Purposeful Life, ISBN 978-1-62209-672-5;
    • Also see: Apastamba, Dharma Sutra, 1.20.6
  21. ^ puNya Spoken Sanskrit English Dictionary, Germany (2010)
  22. ^ search for pApa Monier-Williams' Sanskrit-English Dictionary, University of Koeln, Germany (2008)
  23. ^ What Is Hinduism?, Himalayan Academy (2007), ISBN 978-1-934145-00-5, page 377
  24. ^ Tiwari, K. N. (1998), Classical Indian Ethical Thought: A Philosophical Study of Hindu, Jaina, and Buddhist Morals, Motilal Banarsidass Publishers, ISBN 978-81-208-1608-4, pp 52-55
  25. ^ Gupta, B. (2006). BHAGAVAD GĪTĀ AS DUTY AND VIRTUE ETHICS. Journal of Religious Ethics, 34(3), 373-395.
  26. ^ Mohapatra & Mohapatra, Hinduism: Analytical Study, ISBN 978-8170993889; see pages 37-40
  27. ^ Subedi, S. P. (2003). The Concept in Hinduism of ‘Just War’. Journal of Conflict and Security Law, 8(2), pages 339-361
  28. ^ Klaus K. Klostermaier (1996), in Harvey Leonard Dyck and Peter Brock (Ed), The Pacifist Impulse in Historical Perspective, see Chapter on Himsa and Ahimsa Traditions in Hinduism, ISBN 978-0802007773, University of Toronto Press, pages 230-234
  29. ^ Bakker, F. L. (2013), Comparing the Golden Rule in Hindu and Christian Religious Texts. Studies in Religion/Sciences Religieuses, 42(1), pages 38-58
  30. ^ a b c "Buddhist Studies for Secondary Students, Unit 6: The Four Immeasurables". Buddhanet.net. Retrieved 2014-01-01.
  31. ^ "A View on Buddhism, The four immeasurables: Love, Compassion, Joy and Equanimity". Archived from the original on 2006-08-19. Retrieved 2006-08-19.
  32. ^ Buddhavamsa, chapter 2. For an on-line reference to the Buddhavamsa's seminality in the Theravada notion of parami, see Bodhi (2005).
    In terms of other examples in the Pali literature, Rhys Davids & Stede (1921-25), p. 454, entry for "Pāramī," (retrieved 2007-06-24) cites Jataka i.73 and Dhammapada Atthakatha i.84. Bodhi (2005) also mentions Acariya Dhammapala's treatise in the Cariyapitaka-Atthakatha and the Brahmajala Sutta subcommentary (tika).
  33. ^ Lin Yu-sheng: "The evolution of the pre-Confucian meaning of jen and the Confucian concept of moral autonomy," Monumenta Serica, vol.31, 1974-75
  34. ^ a b Yang, C. K. (1971), Religion in Chinese society: a study of contemporary social functions of religion and some of their historical factors, University of California Press, ISBN 978-0-88133-621-4
  35. ^ Lunyu 2/1 Archived 2007-09-27 at the Wayback Machine, tr. James Legge
  36. ^ Hagakure: The Secret Wisdom of the Samurai, by Yamamoto Tsunetomo, Translated by Alexander Bennett, Tuttle Publishing, 2014, ISBN 978-4-8053-1198-1 (Full Translation)
  37. ^ see Random House's Japanese-English, English-Japanese Dictionary
  38. ^ a b N. Sanjeevi (1973). First All India Tirukkural Seminar Papers (2nd ed.). Chennai: University of Madras. p. xxiii–xxvii.
  39. ^ N. Velusamy and Moses Michael Faraday (Eds.) (February 2017). Why Should Thirukkural Be Declared the National Book of India? (in Tamil and English) (First ed.). Chennai: Unique Media Integrators. p. 55. ISBN 978-93-85471-70-4.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
  40. ^ Blom, John J., Descartes. His moral philosophy and psychology. New York University Press. 1978. ISBN 0-8147-0999-0
  41. ^ a b Leiter, Brian. "Nietzsche's Moral and Political Philosophy". The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Spring 2013 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.).
  42. ^ Franklin's 13 Virtues Extract of Franklin's autobiography, compiled by Paul Ford.
  43. ^ Marc Jackson (2010) Emotion and Psyche. O-books. p. 12 (ISBN 978-1-84694-378-2)
  44. ^ Rand, Ayn The Virtue of Selfishness: A New Concept of Egoism, p. 27
  45. ^ Gotthelf, Allan On Ayn Rand; p. 86
  46. ^ Rand, Ayn (1961) For the New Intellectual Galt’s Speech, "For the New Intellectual: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand", pp. 131, 178.
  47. ^ Peterson, C., & Seligman, M.E.P. (2004). Character Strengths and Virtues: A Handbook and Classification. Oxford University Press. (ISBN 0-19-516701-5)
  48. ^ Peterson, C., & Seligman, M.E.P. (2004). Character Strengths and Virtues: A Handbook and Classification. Oxford University Press. p. 36. (ISBN 0-19-516701-5)
  49. ^ Peterson, C., & Seligman, M.E.P. (2004). Character Strengths and Virtues: A Handbook and Classification. Oxford University Press. pp. 36-39. (ISBN 0-19-516701-5)
  50. ^ Jessica Shryack, Michael F. Steger, Robert F. Krueger, Christopher S. Kallie. 2010. The structure of virtue: An empirical investigation of the dimensionality of the virtues in action inventory of strengths. Elsevier.

Further reading

External links

Alasdair MacIntyre

Alasdair Chalmers MacIntyre (; born 12 January 1929) is a Scottish philosopher, primarily known for his contribution to moral and political philosophy, but also known for his work in history of philosophy and theology. MacIntyre's After Virtue (1981) is widely recognised as one of the most important works of Anglophone moral and political philosophy in the 20th century. He is senior research fellow at the Centre for Contemporary Aristotelian Studies in Ethics and Politics (CASEP) at London Metropolitan University, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at the University of Notre Dame, and Permanent Senior Distinguished Research Fellow at the Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture. During his lengthy academic career, he also taught at Brandeis University, Duke University, Vanderbilt University, and Boston University.

Birdman (film)

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), commonly known simply as Birdman, is a 2014 American black comedy film directed by Alejandro G. Iñárritu. It was written by Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris Jr., and Armando Bo. The film stars Michael Keaton with a supporting cast of Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Amy Ryan, Emma Stone, and Naomi Watts. The story follows Riggan Thomson (Keaton), a faded Hollywood actor best known for playing the superhero "Birdman", as he struggles to mount a Broadway adaptation of a short story by Raymond Carver. The character has no connection to Hanna-Barbera's superhero of the same name.

The film covers the period of previews leading to the play's opening, and with a brief exception appears as if filmed in a single shot, an idea Iñárritu had from the film's conception. Emmanuel Lubezki, who won the Academy Award for his cinematography in Birdman, believed that the recording time necessary for the long take approach taken in Birdman could not have been made with older technology. The film was shot in New York City during the spring of 2013 with a budget of $16.5 million jointly financed by Fox Searchlight Pictures, New Regency Pictures and Worldview Entertainment. It premiered the following year in August where it opened the 71st Venice International Film Festival.

Birdman had a limited theatrical release in the United States on October 17, 2014, followed by a wide release on November 14, grossing more than $103 million worldwide. The film won the Academy Award for Best Picture, along with Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and Best Cinematography from a total of nine nominations, tying it with The Grand Budapest Hotel for the most nominated and awarded film at the Academy's 87th annual awards ceremony with four wins per film. It also won Outstanding Cast in a Motion Picture at the 21st Screen Actors Guild Awards, as well as Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy for Keaton and Best Screenplay at the 72nd Golden Globe Awards.

Cardinal virtues

Four cardinal virtues were recognized in the Bible, Old Testament, classical antiquity and in traditional Christian theology:

Prudence (φρόνησις, phronēsis; Latin: prudentia; also Wisdom, Sophia, sapientia), the ability to discern the appropriate course of action to be taken in a given situation at the appropriate time.

Courage (ἀνδρεία, andreia; Latin: fortitudo): also termed fortitude, forbearance, strength, endurance, and the ability to confront fear, uncertainty, and intimidation

Temperance (σωφροσύνη, sōphrosynē; Latin: temperantia): also known as restraint, the practice of self-control, abstention, discretion, and moderation tempering the appetition. Sōphrosynē can also be translated as sound-mindedness.

Justice (δικαιοσύνη, dikaiosynē; Latin: iustitia): also considered as fairness, the most extensive and most important virtue; the Greek word also having the meaning righteousnessThese principles derive initially from Plato in Republic Book IV, 426–435 (and see Protagoras 330b, which also includes piety (hosiotes)). Cicero expanded on them, and Ambrose, Augustine of Hippo, and Thomas Aquinas adapted them while expanding on the theological virtues.

The term cardinal comes from the Latin cardo (hinge); virtues are so called because they are regarded as the basic virtues required for a virtuous life. They also relate to the Quadrivium.

Charity (virtue)

In Christian theology, Charity (Latin Caritas) is considered as one of the seven virtues and is understood by Thomas Aquinas as "the friendship of man for God", which "unites us to God". He holds it as "the most excellent of the virtues". Further, Aquinas holds that "the habit of charity extends not only to the love of God, but also to the love of our neighbor".The Catechism of the Catholic Church defines "charity" as "the theological virtue by which we love God above all things for His own sake, and our neighbor as ourselves for the love of God".

Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (Saudi Arabia)

The Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (Arabic: هيئة الأمر بالمعروف والنهي عن المنكر‎), abbreviated CPVPV and colloquially termed hai’a (committee), is a Saudi government religious authority charged with implementing the Islamic doctrine of hisbah. It traces its modern origin to a revival of the pre-modern official function of muhtasib (market inspector) by the first Saudi state (1745–1818). The committee was established in 1976 in its current form, with the main goal of supervising markets and public morality. It has been assisted by volunteers, and often described as Islamic religious police. It has been called mutawa, mutaween and by other similar names in English-language sources, with various translations.

In the early 2010s, the committee was estimated to have 3,500-4,000 officers on the streets, assisted by thousands of volunteers, with an additional 10,000 administrative personnel. Committee officers and volunteers have been known to patrol public places, with volunteers focusing on enforcing strict rules of hijab, segregation between the sexes, and daily prayer attendance. Officers were authorized to pursue, detain and interrogate suspected violators prior to the 2016 reforms.

Courage

Courage (also called bravery or valour) is the choice and willingness to confront agony, pain, danger, uncertainty, or intimidation. Physical courage is bravery in the face of physical pain, hardship, death or threat of death, while moral courage is the ability to act rightly in the face of popular opposition, shame, scandal, discouragement, or personal loss.

The classical virtue of fortitude (andreia, fortitudo) is also translated "courage", but includes the aspects of perseverance and patience.In the Western tradition, notable thoughts on courage have come from philosophers, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Aquinas, and Kierkegaard; as well as Judeo-Christian beliefs and texts.

In the Hindu tradition, mythology has given many examples of bravery, valour and courage. Ramayana and Mahabharatha have in them many examples of both physical and moral courage.

In the Eastern tradition, some thoughts on courage were offered by the Tao Te Ching. More recently, courage has been explored by the discipline of psychology.

Ethics

Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy that involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and wrong conduct. The field of ethics, along with aesthetics, concerns matters of value, and thus comprises the branch of philosophy called axiology.Ethics seeks to resolve questions of human morality by defining concepts such as good and evil, right and wrong, virtue and vice, justice and crime. As a field of intellectual inquiry, moral philosophy also is related to the fields of moral psychology, descriptive ethics, and value theory.

Three major areas of study within ethics recognized today are:

Meta-ethics, concerning the theoretical meaning and reference of moral propositions, and how their truth values (if any) can be determined

Normative ethics, concerning the practical means of determining a moral course of action

Applied ethics, concerning what a person is obligated (or permitted) to do in a specific situation or a particular domain of action

Eudaimonia

Eudaimonia (Greek: εὐδαιμονία [eu̯dai̯moníaː]), sometimes anglicized as eudaemonia or eudemonia , is a Greek word commonly translated as happiness or welfare; however, "human flourishing or prosperity" and "blessedness" have been proposed as a more accurate translations.

Etymologically, it consists of the words "eu" ("good") and "daimōn" ("spirit"). It is a central concept in Aristotelian ethics and political philosophy, along with the terms "aretē", most often translated as "virtue" or "excellence", and "phronesis", often translated as "practical or ethical wisdom". In Aristotle's works, eudaimonia (based on older Greek tradition) was used as the term for the highest human good, and so it is the aim of practical philosophy, including ethics and political philosophy, to consider (and also experience) what it really is, and how it can be achieved.

Discussion of the links between virtue of character (ēthikē aretē) and happiness (eudaimonia) is one of the central concerns of ancient ethics, and a subject of much disagreement. As a result there are many varieties of eudaimonism. Two of the most influential forms are those of Aristotle and the Stoics. Aristotle takes virtue and its exercise to be the most important constituent in eudaimonia but acknowledges also the importance of external goods such as health, wealth, and beauty. By contrast, the Stoics make virtue necessary and sufficient for eudaimonia and thus deny the necessity of external goods.

Heroic virtue

Heroic virtue is a phrase coined by Augustine of Hippo to describe the virtue of early Christian martyrs and used by the Catholic Church. The Greek pagan term hero described a person with possibly superhuman abilities and great goodness, and "it connotes a degree of bravery, fame, and distinction which places a man high above his fellows". The term was later applied to other highly virtuous persons who do extraordinary good works.

Heroic virtue is one of the requirements for beatification in the Catholic Church. The modern process for declaring heroic virtue is internal to the church and conducted by those in senior positions.Quoting the Catholic view from the article on Heroic Virtue by J. Wilhelm in the 1917 Catholic Encyclopedia:

Together with the four cardinal virtues the Christian saint must be endowed with the three theological virtues, especially with Divine charity, the virtue which informs all other virtues.

As charity stands at the summit of all virtues, so faith stands at their foundation. For by faith God is first apprehended, and the soul lifted up to supernatural life. Faith is the secret of one's conscience; to the world it is made manifest by the good works in which it lives, "Faith without works is dead" (James 2:2). Such works are: the external profession of faith, strict observance of the Divine commands, prayer, filial devotion to the Church, the fear of God, the horror of sin, penance for sins committed, patience in adversity, etc. All or any of these attain the grade of heroicity when practiced with unflagging perseverance, during a long period of time, or under circumstances so trying that by them men of but ordinary perfection would be deterred from acting.

Hope is a firm trust that God will give us eternal life and all the means necessary to obtain it; it attains heroicity when it amounts to unshakeable confidence and security in God's help throughout all the untoward events of life, when it is ready to forsake and sacrifice all other goods in order to obtain the promised felicity of heaven.

Charity inclines man to love God above all things with the love of friendship. The perfect friend of God says with St. Paul: "With Christ I am nailed to the cross. And I live, now not I; but Christ liveth in me" (Galatians 2:19-20). For love means union. Its type in heaven is the Divine Trinity in Unity; its highest degree in God's creatures is the beatific vision, i.e. participation in God's life. On earth it is the fruitful mother of holiness, the one thing necessary, the one all-sufficient possession. It is extolled in I Cor., xiii, and in St. John's Gospel and Epistles; the beloved disciple and the fiery missionary of the cross are the best interpreters of the mystery of love revealed to them in the Heart of Jesus. With the commandment to love God above all Jesus coupled another: "And the second is like to it: Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is no other commandment greater than these" (Mark 12:31). The likeness, or the linking of the two commandments, lies in this: that in our neighbor we love God's image and likeness, His adopted children and the heirs of His Kingdom. Hence, serving our neighbor is serving God. And the works of spiritual and temporal mercy performed in this world will decide our fate in the next: "Come, ye blessed of my Father, possess you the kingdom. . .For I was hungry, and you gave me to eat. . .Amen I say to you, as long as you did it to one of these my least brethren, you did it to me" (Matthew 25:34–40).

Prudence, which enables us to know what to desire or to avoid, attains heroicity when it coincides with the "gift of counsel", i.e. a clear, Divinely aided insight into right and wrong conduct.

Justice, which gives every one his due, is the pivot on which turn the virtues of religion, piety, obedience, gratitude, truthfulness, friendship, and many more. Jesus sacrificing His life to give God His due, Abraham willing to sacrifice his son in obedience to God's will, these are acts of heroic justice.

Fortitude, which urges us on when difficulty stands in the way of our duty, is itself the heroic element in the practice of virtue; it reaches its apex when it overcomes obstacles which to ordinary virtue are insurmountable.

Temperance, which restrains us when passions urge us to what is wrong, comprises becoming deportment, modesty, abstinence, chastity, sobriety, and others.

In fine it should be remarked that almost every act of virtue proceeding from the Divine principle within us has in it the elements of all the virtues; only mental analysis views the same act under various aspects.

List of works with the subtitle "Virtue Rewarded"

This is a chronological list of works with the subtitle "Virtue Rewarded".

In books and other works, a subtitle is an explanatory or alternate title that usually offers a generalization or moral drawn from the work's plot. Subtitles were a common feature of English literary works of the 17th and 18th centuries, especially plays. In the early 17th century, this convention was at times made light of, as in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, or, What You Will; while in the 18th century, subtitles would often make a more serious moral point, even in case of comic works.The "Virtue Rewarded" subtitle has been used by a variety of books as a reminder or boast to the reader that the neoclassical principle of poetic justice will be upheld by the plot. With changing cultural perceptions in the 20th century, the use of this subtitle diminished as a serious form. In academic discourse in the 20th century, subtitles began to be full explanations of the subject of a work, while the title itself was a gnomic or cryptically poetic phrase. This reliance upon the subtitle is part of the comic density of literary reference brought into play in the Anatomy of Melancholy by Cook et al., implying that dissertation-writing is governed both by the poetic justice principle—virtue rewarded—and by the depressive symptoms described in Robert Burton's The Anatomy of Melancholy (1622).

This list is a compilation of works whose full subtitle is "Virtue Rewarded". Thus The Crafty Chambermaid, or, Beauty and Virtue Rewarded (London, 1800) does not qualify, nor does Virtue Rewarded, or, The Faithful Lady (London, 1795).

Nicomachean Ethics

The Nicomachean Ethics (; Ancient Greek: Ἠθικὰ Νικομάχεια) is the name normally given to Aristotle's best-known work on ethics. The work, which plays a pre-eminent role in defining Aristotelian ethics, consists of ten books, originally separate scrolls, and is understood to be based on notes from his lectures at the Lyceum. The title is often assumed to refer to his son Nicomachus, to whom the work was dedicated or who may have edited it (although his young age makes this less likely). Alternatively, the work may have been dedicated to his father, who was also called Nicomachus.

The theme of the work is a Socratic question previously explored in the works of Plato, Aristotle's friend and teacher, of how men should best live. In his Metaphysics, Aristotle described how Socrates, the friend and teacher of Plato, had turned philosophy to human questions, whereas pre-Socratic philosophy had only been theoretical. Ethics, as now separated out for discussion by Aristotle, is practical rather than theoretical, in the original Aristotelian senses of these terms. In other words, it is not only a contemplation about good living, because it also aims to create good living. It is therefore connected to Aristotle's other practical work, the Politics, which similarly aims at people becoming good. Ethics is about how individuals should best live, while the study of politics is from the perspective of a law-giver, looking at the good of a whole community.

The Nicomachean Ethics is widely considered one of the most important historical philosophical works, and had an important impact upon the European Middle Ages, becoming one of the core works of medieval philosophy. It therefore indirectly became critical in the development of all modern philosophy as well as European law and theology. Many parts of the Nicomachean Ethics are well known in their own right, within different fields. In the Middle Ages, a synthesis between Aristotelian ethics and Christian theology became widespread, in Europe as introduced by Albertus Magnus. While various philosophers had influenced Christendom since its earliest times, in Western Europe Aristotle became "the Philosopher". The most important version of this synthesis was that of Thomas Aquinas. Other more "Averroist" Aristotelians such as Marsilius of Padua were controversial but also influential. (Marsilius is for example sometimes said to have influenced the controversial English political reformer Thomas Cromwell.)

A critical period in the history of this work's influence is at the end of the Middle Ages, and beginning of modernity, when several authors such as Francis Bacon and Thomas Hobbes, argued forcefully and largely successfully that the medieval Aristotelian tradition in practical thinking had become a great impediment to philosophy in their time. However, in more recent generations, Aristotle's original works (if not those of his medieval followers) have once again become an important source. More recent authors influenced by this work include Alasdair MacIntyre, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Martha Nussbaum and Avital Ronell.

Penance

Penance is repentance of sins as well as an alternate name for the Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, and Oriental Orthodox sacrament of Reconciliation or Confession. It also plays a part in confession among Anglicans and Methodists, in which it is a rite, as well as among other Protestants. The word penance derives from Old French and Latin paenitentia, both of which derive from the same root meaning repentance, the desire to be forgiven (in English see contrition). Penance and repentance, similar in their derivation and original sense, have come to symbolize conflicting views of the essence of repentance, arising from the controversy as to the respective merits of "faith" and "good works". Word derivations occur in many languages.

Scott Moir

Scott Patrick Moir (born September 2, 1987) is a Canadian ice dancer. With ice dance partner Tessa Virtue, he is the 2010 Olympic champion, the 2018 Olympic champion, the 2014 Olympic silver medalist, a three-time World champion (2010, 2012, 2017), a three-time Four Continents champion (2008, 2012, 2017), the 2016–17 Grand Prix Final champion, an eight-time Canadian national champion (2008–2010, 2012–2014, 2017–2018), and the 2006 World Junior champion. Moir and Virtue are also the 2018 Olympic gold medalists in the team event and the 2014 Olympic silver medalists in the team event. They are the most decorated Canadian ice dance team of all time and the most decorated Olympic figure skaters of all time.Virtue and Moir were paired in 1997, at the ages of seven and nine. They are the 2004 Canadian junior champions and became Canada’s top ice dance team in 2007. They are the 2008 World silver medalists and the 2009 World bronze medalists and became the first ice dance team to receive a 10.0 for a program component score under the new ISU Judging System. In 2010, they became the first ice dancers from North America to win an Olympic gold medal, ending the 34-year streak of the Europeans. They are the youngest ice dance team ever to win an Olympic title. They were the first ice dancers to win a gold medal in their Olympic debut, and the first ice dance team to win Olympic gold on home ice.Virtue and Moir continued to be one of the world's top ice dance teams after their first Olympic victory in 2010. They are the 2010 and 2012 World champions, the 2011 and 2013 World silver medallists, and the 2014 Olympic ice dance and team event silver medalists.

After taking a two-season break from the sport, they returned to competition in the fall of 2016 and became the 2017 World champions, having an unprecedented undefeated season. As of 2018, they are five-time Olympic medalists. Virtue and Moir are holders of the world record score for the now-defunct original dance.Having skated together for over twenty years, Virtue and Moir are the longest-standing ice dance team in Canadian history. Due to their longevity, achievements and versatility on the ice, they are considered by many to be the greatest ice dancers of all time. In 2018, Time magazine noted that "they've become especially beloved by new and returning spectators alike for their passionate performances and undeniable chemistry, on and off the ice."

Seven virtues

The Catechism of the Catholic Church defines virtue as "a habitual and firm disposition to do the good." Traditionally, the seven Christian virtues or heavenly virtues combine the four classical cardinal virtues of prudence, justice, temperance and courage (or fortitude) with the three theological virtues of faith, hope and charity. These were adopted by the Church Fathers as the seven virtues.

Stoicism

Stoicism is a school of Hellenistic philosophy founded by Zeno of Citium in Athens in the early 3rd century BC. While Stoic physics are largely drawn from the teachings of the philosopher Heraclitus, they are heavily influenced by certain teachings of Socrates. Stoicism is predominantly a philosophy of personal ethics informed by its system of logic and its views on the natural world. According to its teachings, as social beings, the path to happiness for humans is found in accepting the moment as it presents itself, by not allowing oneself to be controlled by the desire for pleasure or fear of pain, by using one's mind to understand the world and to do one's part in nature's plan, and by working together and treating others fairly and justly.

The Stoics are especially known for teaching that "virtue is the only good" for human beings, and that external things—such as health, wealth, and pleasure—are not good or bad in themselves, but have value as "material for virtue to act upon". Alongside Aristotelian ethics, the Stoic tradition forms one of the major founding approaches to Western virtue ethics. The Stoics also held that certain destructive emotions resulted from errors of judgment, and they believed people should aim to maintain a will (called prohairesis) that is "in accord with nature". Because of this, the Stoics thought the best indication of an individual's philosophy was not what a person said, but how a person behaved. To live a good life, one had to understand the rules of the natural order since they thought everything was rooted in nature.

Many Stoics—such as Seneca and Epictetus—emphasized that because "virtue is sufficient for happiness", a sage would be emotionally resilient to misfortune. This belief is similar to the meaning of the phrase "stoic calm", though the phrase does not include the "radical ethical" Stoic views that only a sage can be considered truly free, and that all moral corruptions are equally vicious.Stoicism flourished throughout the Roman and Greek world until the 3rd century AD, and among its adherents was Emperor Marcus Aurelius. It experienced a decline after Christianity became the state religion in the 4th century AD. Since then it has seen revivals, notably in the Renaissance (Neostoicism) and in the contemporary era (modern Stoicism).

Temperance (virtue)

Temperance is defined as moderation or voluntary self-restraint. It is typically described in terms of what an individual voluntarily refrains from doing. This includes restraint from retaliation in the form of non-violence and forgiveness, restraint from arrogance in the form of humility and modesty, restraint from excesses such as splurging now in the form of prudence, and restraint from excessive anger or craving for something in the form of calmness and self-control.Temperance has been described as a virtue by religious thinkers, philosophers, and more recently, psychologists, particularly in the positive psychology movement. In classical iconography, the virtue is often depicted as a woman holding two vessels transferring water from one to another. It was one of the cardinal virtues in western thought found in Greek philosophy and Christianity, as well as eastern traditions such as Buddhism and Hinduism.

Temperance is one of the six virtues in the positive psychology classification, included with wisdom, courage, humanity, justice, and transcendence. It is generally characterized as the control over excess, and expressed through characteristics such as chastity, modesty, humility, self-regulation, hospitality, decorum, abstinence, forgiveness and mercy; each of these involves restraining an excess of some impulse, such as sexual desire, vanity, or anger.

The term "temperance" can also refer to the abstention from alcohol (teetotalism), especially with reference to the temperance movement.

Tessa Virtue

Tessa Jane McCormick Virtue (born May 17, 1989) is a Canadian ice dancer. With ice dance partner Scott Moir, she is the 2010 Olympic champion, the 2018 Olympic champion, the 2014 Olympic silver medalist, a three-time World champion (2010, 2012, 2017), a three-time Four Continents champion (2008, 2012, 2017), the 2016–17 Grand Prix Final champion, an eight-time Canadian National champion (2008–2010, 2012–2014, 2017–2018), and the 2006 World Junior champion. Virtue and Moir are also the 2018 Olympic gold medalists in the team event and the 2014 Olympic silver medalists in the team event. They are the most decorated Canadian ice dance team of all time and the most decorated Olympic figure skaters of all time.Virtue and Moir were paired in 1997, at the ages of seven and nine. They are the 2004 Canadian junior champions and became Canada’s top ice dance team in 2007. They are the 2008 World silver medalists and the 2009 World bronze medalists and became the first ice dance team to receive a 10.0 for a program component score under the new ISU Judging System. In 2010, they became the first ice dancers from North America to win an Olympic gold medal, ending the 34-year streak of the Europeans. They are the youngest ice dance team ever to win an Olympic title. They were the first ice dancers to win a gold medal in their Olympic debut, and the first ice dance team to win Olympic gold on home ice.Virtue and Moir continued to be one of the world's top ice dance teams after their first Olympic victory in 2010. They are the 2010 and 2012 World champions, the 2011 and 2013 World silver medallists, and the 2014 Olympic ice dance and team event silver medalists.

After taking a two-season break from the sport, they returned to competition in the fall of 2016 and became the 2017 World champions, having an unprecedented undefeated season. As of 2018, they are five-time Olympic medalists. Virtue and Moir are holders of the world record score for the now-defunct original dance.Having skated together for over twenty years, Virtue and Moir are the longest-standing ice dance team in Canadian history. Due to their longevity, achievements and versatility on the ice, they are considered by many to be the greatest ice dancers of all time. In 2018, Time magazine noted that "they've become especially beloved by new and returning spectators alike for their passionate performances and undeniable chemistry, on and off the ice".

UB40

UB40 are an English reggae and pop band, formed in December 1978 in Birmingham, England. The band has had more than 50 singles in the UK Singles Chart, and has also achieved considerable international success. They have been nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album four times, and in 1984 were nominated for the Brit Award for Best British Group. UB40 have sold over 70 million records worldwide. The ethnic make-up of the band's original line-up was diverse, with musicians of English, Welsh, Irish, Jamaican, Scottish and Yemeni parentage.Their hit singles include their debut "Food for Thought" and two Billboard Hot 100 number ones with "Red Red Wine" and "Can't Help Falling in Love". Both of these also topped the UK Singles Chart, as did the band's version of "I Got You Babe". Their two most successful albums, Labour of Love (1983) and Promises and Lies (1993), reached number one on the UK Albums Chart. UB40 and the English ska band Madness hold the record for most weeks spent by a group in the UK singles chart during the 1980s, with 214 weeks each.The band's line-up was stable for nearly 29 years, from March 1979 until January 2008, when frontman Ali Campbell left the band, followed shortly thereafter by keyboardist Mickey Virtue. Another member, Astro, remained with the band until November 2013, when he departed the original band to team up with Campbell and Virtue in a new version of UB40. In 2014, legal advice was sought by the original band (now consisting of remaining co-founding members drummer Jimmy Brown, guitarist Robin Campbell, bassist Earl Falconer, percussionist Norman Hassan, and saxophonist Brian Travers, along with new vocalist Duncan Campbell) who took action against the group containing Campbell, Virtue, and Astro over usage of the band name, due to its being used by both parties.

Virtue ethics

Virtue ethics (or aretaic ethics , from Greek ἀρετή (arete)) are normative ethical theories which emphasize virtues of mind and character. Virtue ethicists discuss the nature and definition of virtues and other related problems. These include how virtues are acquired, how they are applied in various real life contexts, and whether they are rooted in a universal human nature or in a plurality of cultures.

Theories
Concepts
Philosophers
Applied ethics
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