Pleasure and Friendship
In the section “Three Kinds of Friendship” Aristotle distinguishes his three kinds of friendship. Throughout our lives we will obtain three different kinds of friendships called pleasure-friendships, use-friendships, and character-friendships. One of these categories stood out among the others and made me re-think who I can call my true friends. In his description of a pleasure-friendship Aristotle writes that, “The cause of friendship between young people seems to be pleasure. For their lives are guided by their feelings, and they pursue above all what is pleasant for themselves and what is at hand.” (122). For Aristotle, a wide variety of friendships fall under this category. If a person is a friend of another person because they are funny and enjoyable to be around, Aristotle would call this a friendship of pleasure. That does not mean a complete friendship couldn’t be one where one friend found another’s humorous company pleasurable. The complete friendship can contain pleasures, but if people are friends only because of the pleasurable aspects of another person then Aristotle would consider this a friendship of pleasure, and not the best friendship, such as a few of my so called friends that only ask me to hangout when they want to come over and get on the boat. It seems that Aristotle would classify most modern day relationships as friendships of pleasure. Aristotle believes that only a few friendships are of the best kind. Aristotle says that these friendships of pleasure cannot last long because what is pleasurable eventually changes or a person might someday not be able to be pleasurable in the original way. Aristotle might explain the end of a relationship by saying that it was a friendship of pleasure, and the relationship dissolved because the desire for pleasure changed, or the ability to provide pleasure changed. But friendships of pleasure are not thought to be bad. They are only...