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Plato's Meno and Thomas Aquinas on Justice in the text Four Cardinal Virtues - Essay Example


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Plato's Meno and Thomas Aquinas on Justice in the text Four Cardinal Virtues

In light of the above, Plato pointed to virtue as being a benefit to the social order and helpful to both the individual and the society (Rist 89). On the other hand, Socrates had the view that every individual has the rationality of doing right and no one can harm another while in his or her right mind. Moreover, Aquinas text on justice in the Four Cardinal Virtues point to justice as being a component of virtue. Justice aims at correcting the wrong doers in the society in a bid to make the societal order friendlier for human inhabitance. The process of applying justice involves forms of punishment. From this, we can deduce that in order to maintain justice, some forms of punishment must be administered upon the wrongdoers (Rist 138). Aquinas rightfully puts justice as a part of virtue, and punishment being related to justice, it is viable to conclude that punishment also constitutes a virtue. Technically, though, punishment cannot be termed as a virtue since it is under the jurisdiction of justice (Rist 149). As such, it can only be mentioned in the context of justice, which then extends to virtue, thereby showing the interrelation between the three. Justice tries to respect the rights of others as highlighted by Aquinas. On the other hand, virtues also have the theme of maintaining the morality of the society in general (Rist 172). Therefore, it can be morally justified to look at punishment as a virtue due to its motive of looking at the welfare of the society. Alternatively, the morality

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of punishment that makes it virtuous is its moral obligation to rectify the societal individuals and instill some virtuous ideologies in them. From this, we can morally conclude that it is virtuous to administer punishment due to the justification highlighted (Rist 98). Meno in Plato’s text tries to pose the importance of virtue in the context that an individual does not understand what it is. From his point of view, for one to understand or benefit from something, the individual must have profound knowledge of what he or she is dealing with. Moreover, Plato in the Republic tries to point to the fact that an individual has the rationality of doing what is good and bad unless the rule of law keeps them on the path of doing well. All this tries to justify why punishment is important not only to the society but to the individual who is receiving the punishment (Rist 198). Therefore, punishment is under the jurisdiction of changing wrongdoers in the society into respectable persons in the society. Those deemed worthy of punishment by the relevant authorities benefit from the act since virtues are instilled upon them by the punishment programs put in place. Therefore, they transform into persons who help in propelling the society forward development wise. Nonetheless, the punishment administered should be corresponding to the crime committed to enable complete transformation. Considering that there are different levels of crime, which vary on intensity, there should also be varying levels of punishment to cater for the assortment of crimes. Plato, who states that the level of punishment should match that of the crime committed, aptly puts this into focus (Rist 201). Moreover, it is important to note the aim of punishment in the course of its administration in order to come up with the most viable punishment criteria. As such, capital punishment such as death


Name: Instruction: Task: Date: Ethics Ethics refers to the morally acceptable behavior and the way that an individual carries oneself around while interacting with people. Ethics in a society are composed of virtues, which are deeds that add value to the society to both the person who partakes in it and those in the surrounding…
Author : nwolf
Platos Meno and Thomas Aquinas on Justice in the text Four Cardinal Virtues
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