The Virtue of Bravery Essays
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The Virtue of Bravery
In this essay I will be describing the virtue of bravery. I will first define what
Aristotle thinks virtue is, explain the virtue of bravery, and then finally reflect this virtue on my personal experience in the Shaw neighborhood. Aristotle breaks down virtue into four aspects which are: a state that decides in mean, consisting in a mean, the mean relative to us, which is defined by reference to reason(1107a). He also states that there are two kinds of virtue: one of thought or intellect and one of character or actions. He also states that virtue is a state of character and is achieved by habit. Aristotle uses several examples to define a the bravery virtue. He say that as humans we fear all…show more content…
He asks the question, What does a brave person find frightening? He answers with, a brave person is frightened by the same things any human can find irrisistible, but the difference is that he will stand firm against it until the end, and he is not frightened by things which are are not irrisistable. “Hence whoever stands firm against the right things and fears the right things, for the right end, in the right way, at the right time, and is correspondingly confident is the brave person.”(1115b 15-20) Aristotle then explains that a brave person aims at what is fine. What is fine to a brave person is bravery. Therefore the end is fine, since each thing is defined by its end.
A brave person shows what bravery is by standing firm and through his actions. A brave person who goes to excess is one who is excessively fearless. They are excessively confident about frightening things, making them rash. Sometimes this person may be a boaster and a pretender to bravery. A rash person will act that they are fearless and appear to have qualities of the brave person but they never stand firm against anything frightening. A rash person wishes for dangers to come, but when they do he cowers, but a brave person is eager in action and keeps quiet until then. A brave person that has deficiency is a coward. He fears the wrong things in the wrong way. He has a deficiency in confidence and he is afraid of everything, while the brave person
Some things are easy to understand and describe. A rose is a rose and a nose is a nose after all. However, other concepts are more difficult to interpret. Trust is one of these concepts. Understanding is another. Then again, bravery might be the most difficult word to comprehend. What makes one person brave and another not? How can the word bravery be defined?
Many people hold a common misconception about bravery. They believe that bravery is the same as being without fear. But being brave and being fearless are two different things. Many people skydive, do public speaking, ask questions, or enter relationships not because they are unafraid but because they are willing to overcome this fear. Or perhaps they are willing to go ahead despite the butterflies in their stomachs. To some, this is a foreign concept that prevents them from trying new things. However, others understand that “bravery is being terrified and doing it anyway,” as Laurell K Hamilton said. Being brave is ignoring fear for a moment and carrying on.
Bravery is also closely tied to selflessness. The book Divergent by Veronica Roth describes bravery as being the ultimate selfless action. The lead character states that “selflessness and bravery aren’t all that different.” Bravery is when you put yourself in danger to help or protect another. Mothers are brave when they give up sleep in order to comfort their child. Teachers are brave when they give up their own time to improve their teaching. Firemen are brave when they rush into a building to save someone trapped inside. Bravery is taking a risk to give something of yourself in order to make life easier for another.
Above all, bravery is instinctual. It is something that cannot really be thought through. Oftentimes, bravery is a spur-of-the-moment emotion that leaves little time to think your actions and consequences through. Brave people don’t hesitate. They can leap forward when others are still working their way through a problem. In order to be brave, one should not overthink situations. It’s an instinctive action that just happens. If you talk to someone that has just performed a brave act and ask them why they leapt into danger, their response is often “… I don’t know. I just did it.”
If there weren’t any brave people, the world would be a much different place. Perhaps it would be a sadder one, lacking in policemen and nurses. Bravery is essential for humans to work together and for the world to continue to change and grow.