Friendship is basically a mutual feeling of goodwill that exists between two people. In this regard, it mostly consists of equivalent exchanges mostly on the basis of kindness. In mostly friendly relationships, love is called for from each individual (Aristotle). By and large, people prefer to be loved, with true friendship consisting more of loving than being loved. It is common to find friendship lasting when each person loves the other in accordance with the other’s worth. If there is a virtue that has the effect of linking humanity together, then that virtue is friendship, which is a key component of a good life.
Friendship is a Virtue, or that it is with Virtue
According to Aristotle, friendship is an act of showing affection rather than receiving affection. He actually treats friendship as being like gladness and gratification. In his opinion, it is one of the key components of the good life, with its value being in having it as well as enjoying it. Aristotle goes ahead to assert that friendship is a virtue, or that it is with virtue (Aristotle).
By and large, Aristotle’s claim that friendship is a virtue or that it is with virtue is very true. This is because it is common for good friends to wish good things for his or her friend. While in a friendship, an individual enjoys being in the company of a friend (Aristotle). Personal joys as well as sorrows are shared. Friendship is also a virtue because it assists the youth to keep from error. Additionally, friendship is instrumental in assisting the old, as well as those in their prime, to be responsible for their actions. Friendship is also the bond that unites communities. It is no wonder legislators are keen in securing friendships, than having fair deals (Aristotle).
Why People are Not Attracted to all those Possessing Character Friendship
Even though virtue is the determining factor in character friendship, it is however common to find people not being automatically attracted to everybody that possesses such a moral attribute (Aristotle). This is mainly on the basis of the kind of the motives behind the friendship. In some cases, the motives to a friendship are likely to differ in respect to the feelings. Additionally, people are not attracted to those who seek the greatest honors as well as gratification only for themselves. By and large, a good person who is self-loving will only be in a search for what is beneficial to him or her (Aristotle).
In any friendship, there is sometimes an individual whose interest is to get the better of the bargain. Such individuals usually think that they have received less than they bargained for (Aristotle). As a result, they end up blaming their partners for not getting all that they want and deserve. For such individuals, in as much as they may possess a friendly character, people may not necessarily be attracted to them (Aristotle).
Another reason why people are sometimes not attracted to an individual with a friendly character is when the other party exhibits a friendship that is based on superiority. In this regard, people are usually not attracted to the better man who thinks that he is supposed to receive more from the friendship. On the whole, an individual who exhibits dominance in a friendship, in spite of having a friendly character, does not attract people at all (Aristotle).
The Question of Loving the Abstract Attribute or the Person
Many a times, in loving a friend for his virtue, many people love the abstract attribute, and not really the individual himself. A good case in point is made manifest among young people. This is mainly because young people are usually guided by emotion, meaning that they end up pursuing love above any other thing in their lives (Aristotle). However, as age increases, their gratifications also change. It is no wonder that these young people hastily befriend one another only to cease being friends after a short while (Aristotle).
This is a clear indication that in loving a friend for his virtue, humanity loves the abstract attribute and not the individual himself (Aristotle). Otherwise, if they were to love the individual instead, then they would be able to withstand any pressures and stick with the individual in spite of what happens. With regard to life in the world today, a lot of marriages are on the rocks, with many ending up in divorce because people love the abstract attribute and not the individual (Aristotle).
Another reason why in loving a friend for his virtue, many people love the abstract attribute, and not really the individual himself comes from the fact that it is rare to find permanent friendship According to Aristotle, perfect friendship occur in situations in which people wish well to their friends mainly as a result of their own nature (Aristotle). This does not usually happen incidentally. Consequently, such friendships are only able to last as long as the good in the individual lasts. However, in the absence of the abstract attribute, the friendship definitely comes to an end (Aristotle).
Over and above, friendship is a virtue that bonds men together not as a result of necessity or household obligation, but through reciprocated deference as well as good worth. It is actually an element of the good life, with its value being in not only enjoying it, but also being in possession of it.