Aristotle believed that controlling our impulses and appetites made us morally virtuous. He also believed that a person's pleasures reveal his or her true moral character. By this, I think he meant that the act of giving in to our impulses makes us weak and cowardly; therefore, exposing our bad moral character (Moore & Bruder, 2008, p. 282). I do not agree with Aristotle regarding this specific belief concerning virtue and moral character.There are good habits, and there are bad habits. I think we would all agree that a good habit is to brush your teeth twice a day and a bad habit is having an addiction to drugs. Does the fact that you brush your teeth twice every day mean that you have good moral character? Does the fact that your body is addicted to drugs mean that you have bad moral character? I don't think so. I think the definition of moral character is subjective, depending upon what each of us personally believes to be morally good or bad, what our culture believes, and what our living environment has taught us to believe. I am quite sure that there are people that have bad moral character but still manage to habitually bush their teeth every day.How can we relate habits to moral character when habits are a continuous act of our subconscious? I would think that moral character should be related to conscious decisions, thoughts, and beliefs. Drug addicts are often considered to have bad moral character, but I struggle with this concept, because the basis of drug addiction (and many other bad addictions) is a physical and/or mental sickness. What if the addict became addicted to prescription drugs because of an injury? I would think that most drug addicts know that their addiction is wrong but the physical and mental sickness tied to it keeps them from doing what they believe to be right. I think an important characteristic of good moral character is to know the difference between right and wrong.
Moore, B. N., Bruder, K. (2008). Philosophy: The Power of Ideas (5th ed.). New York. McGraw-Hill.
Aristotle believed that controlling our impulses and appetites made us morally virtuous. He also believed that a person's pleasures reveal his or her true moral character. By this, I th