Chapter

Pagan Virtues?

John Casey

in Pagan Virtue

Published in print October 1991 | ISBN: 9780198240037
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191680069 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198240037.003.0006

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

Pagan Virtues?

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This chapter describes the attributes of a courageous man, as someone who does not simply pursue an end, which he desires, with intelligence and determination, despite the pains and terrors. Rather his virtue, connected as it is with pride and shame, implies from the beginning an understanding of himself as a person amongst persons, with values and loyalties, which go with that understanding. The chapter envisages temperance as a virtue of civilization, enabling people to attach due weight to the wishes and claims of others, and not simply to their own, which enables us to understand our own claims. The chapter concludes that like practical wisdom, justice issues from good dispositions, and can be understood through benevolence, love, and friendship. It is extremely difficult to imagine how a good life could be lived without these virtues. Indeed all of them seem necessary for every individual, yet to exercise them requires the co-operation of Fortune.

Keywords: courageous man; temperance; civilization; practical wisdom; justice; benevolence; Fortune

Chapter.  5384 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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