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The Most Successful People — 4 Comments

  1. It’s important that the list excludes wealthy and influential. Those have everything to do with power over others and nothing to do with success or happiness.

  2. For Aristotle, virtue is necessary, but not sufficient for a well-lived life. So, while he does not consider wealth and influence to necessary conditions for Happiness, he thinks poverty and powerlessness would prevent even a virtuous person from living a life of full-flourishing. These are not blameworthy conditions, but are impediments to happiness nonetheless. You need enough wealth and power in your community to fully participate in all your culture has to offer.

    I think Aristotle might leave humble, sacrificial, faithful and peaceful off the list of required character traits.

    • Right on both counts.

      These latter traits clearly come more from Jesus than Aristotle.

      But I think they can be accommodated quite well as virtues within the general Aristotelian ethical scheme – as the late medieval Church did.

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