Vv

V is for Virtue and Viewpoint

V = Virtue and Characteristics of Angels and Humanity.

See also: Morality and Ethics, and Integrity

Viewpoint and Point of view

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viewpoint

vir·tue

vir·tue (vûrʹch) noun

1.     a. Moral excellence and righteousness; goodness. b. An example or kind of moral excellence: the virtue of patience.

2.     Chastity, especially in a girl or woman.

3.     A particularly efficacious, good, or beneficial quality; advantage: a plan with the virtue of being practical.

4.     Effective force or power: believed in the virtue of prayer.

5.     virtues Theology. The fifth of the nine orders of angels.

6.     Obsolete. Manly courage; valor.

idiom.
by virtue of or in virtue of
On the grounds or basis of; by reason of: well off by virtue of a large inheritance.

[Middle English vertu, from Old French, from Latin virtūs, manliness, excellence, goodness, from vir, man.]

Virtue (LatinvirtusGreek: ἀρετή “arete“) is moral excellence. A virtue is a positive trait or quality subjectively deemed to be morally excellent and thus is valued as a foundation of principle and good moral being. Personal virtues are characteristics valued as promoting collective and inVirtue is a pattern of thought and behavior based on high moral standards. Virtues can be placed into a broader context of values. Each individual has a core of underlying values that contribute to his or her system of beliefs, ideas and/or opinions (see value in semiotics). Integrity in the application of a value ensures its continuity and this continuity separates a value from beliefs, opinion and ideas. In this context, a value (e.g., Truth or Equality or Creed) is the core from which we operate or react. Societies have values that are shared among many of the participants in that culture. An individual’s values typically are largely, but not entirely, in agreement with the values of his or her culture.

Individual virtues can be grouped into one of four categories of values:

Examples of virtues include:

Main article: List of virtues

Virtue, sword in hand, with her foot on the prostrate form of Tyranny on the Great Seal of Virginia.

The four classic Western Cardinal virtues are:

  • temperance: σωφροσύνη (sōphrosynē)
  • prudence: φρόνησις (phronēsis)
  • courage: ἀνδρεία (andreia)
  • justice: δικαιοσύνη (dikaiosynē)

This enumeration is traced to Greek philosophy and was listed at least by Plato, if not also by Socrates, from whom no attributable written works exist. Plato also mentions “Holiness”.

It is likely that Plato believed that virtue was, in fact, a single thing, and that this enumeration was created by others in order to better define virtue. In Protagoras and Meno, he states that the separate virtues can’t exist independently and offers as evidence the contradictions of acting with wisdom (prudence), yet in an unjust way, or acting with bravery (fortitude), yet without knowing (prudence).

Auctoritas: “Charismatic Authority” The sense of one’s social standing, built up through experience, Pietas, and Industria.

Comitas: “Humor” Ease of manner, courtesy, openness, and friendliness.

Clementia: “Mercy” Mildness and gentleness.

Dignitas: “Dignity” A sense of self-worth, personal self respect,self-esteem.

Firmitas: “Tenacity” Strength of mind, the ability to stick to one’s purpose.

Frugalitas: “Frugalness” Economy and simplicity of style, without being miserly.

Gravitas: “Gravity” A sense of the importance of the matter at hand, responsibility and earnestness.

Honestas: “Respectibility” The image that one presents as a respectable member of society.

Humanitas: “Humanity” Refinement,civilization,learning,and being cultured.

Industria: “Industriousness” Hard work.

Pietas: “Dutifulness” More than religious piety; a respect for the natural order socially, politically, and religiously. Includes the ideas of patriotism and devotion to others.

Prudentia: “Prudence” Foresight, wisdom, and personal discretion.

Salubritas: “Wholesomeness” Health and cleanliness.

Severitas: “Sternness” Gravity, self-control.

Veritas: “Truthfulness” Honesty in dealing with others.

Virtus: “Manliness” Valor, excellence, courage, character, and worth.

Public virtues: In addition to the private virtues which were aspired to by individuals, Roman culture also strove to uphold virtues which were shared by all of society in common. Note that some of the virtues to which individuals were expected to aspire are also public virtues to be sought by society as a whole. These virtues were often expressed by minting them on coinage; in this way, their message would be shared by all the classical world. In many cases, these virtues were personified as deities.

Abundantia: “Abundance, Plenty” The ideal of there being enough food and prosperity for all segments of society.

Aequitas: “Equity” Fair dealing both within government and among the people.

Bonus Eventus: “Good fortune” Remembrance of important positive events.

Clementia: “Clemency” Mercy, shown to other nations.

Concordia: “Concord” Harmony among the Roman people, and also between Rome and other nations.

Felicitas: “Happiness, prosperity” A celebration of the best aspects of Roman society.

Fides: “Confidence” Good faith in all commercial and governmental dealings.

Fortuna: “Fortune” An acknowledgement of positive events.

Genius: “Spirit of Rome” Acknowledgement of the combined spirit of Rome, and its people.

Hilaritas: “Mirth, rejoicing” An expression of happy times.

Justitia: “Justice” As expressed by sensible laws and governance.

Laetitia: “Joy, Gladness” The celebration of thanksgiving, often of the resolution of crisis.

Liberalitas: “Liberality” Generous giving.

Libertas: “Freedom” A virtue which has been subsequently aspired to by all cultures.

Nobilitas: “Noblility” Noble action within the public sphere.

Ops: “Wealth” Acknowledgement of the prosperity of the Roman world.

Patientia: “Endurance, Patience” The ability to weather storms and crisis.

Pax: “Peace” A celebration of peace among society and between nations.

Pietas: “Piety, Dutifulness” People paying honor to the gods.

Providentia: “Providence, Fortethought” The ability of Roman society to survive trials and manifest a greater destiny.

Pudicita: “Modesty, Chastity.” A public expression which belies the accusation of “moral corruptness” in ancient Rome.

Salus: “Safety” Concern for public health and wellfare.

Securitas: “Confidence, Security” Brought by peace and efficient governance.

Spes: “Hope” Especially during times of difficulty.

Uberitas: “Fertility” Particularly concerning agriculture.

Virtus: “Courage” Especially of leaders within society and government.

Virtue is a pattern of thought and behavior based on high moral standards. Virtues can be placed into a broader context of values. Each individual has a core of underlying values that contribute to his or her system of beliefs, ideas and/or opinions (see value in semiotics). Integrity in the application of a value ensures its continuity and this continuity separates a value from beliefs, opinion and ideas. In this context, a value (e.g., Truth or Equality or Creed) is the core from which we operate or react. Societies have values that are shared among many of the participants in that culture. An individual’s values typically are largely, but not entirely, in agreement with the values of his or her culture.

Individual virtues can be grouped into one of four categories of values:

Examples of virtues include:

Main article: List of virtues

Virtue, sword in hand, with her foot on the prostrate form of Tyranny on the Great Seal of Virginia.

The four classic Western Cardinal virtues are:

  • temperance: σωφροσύνη (sōphrosynē)
  • prudence: φρόνησις (phronēsis)
  • courage: ἀνδρεία (andreia)
  • justice: δικαιοσύνη (dikaiosynē)

This enumeration is traced to Greek philosophy and was listed at least by Plato, if not also by Socrates, from whom no attributable written works exist. Plato also mentions “Holiness”.

It is likely that Plato believed that virtue was, in fact, a single thing, and that this enumeration was created by others in order to better define virtue. In Protagoras and Meno, he states that the separate virtues can’t exist independently and offers as evidence the contradictions of acting with wisdom (prudence), yet in an unjust way, or acting with bravery (fortitude), yet without knowing (prudence).

Aristotle’s virtues

In his work Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle defined a virtue as a balance point between a deficiency and an excess of a trait.[1] The point of greatest virtue lies not in the exact middle, but at a golden mean sometimes closer to one extreme than the other. For example, courage is the mean between cowardice and foolhardiness, confidence the mean between self-deprecation and vanity, and generosity the mean between miserliness and extravagance. To find the golden mean requires common-sense smarts, not necessarily high intelligence. In Aristotle’s sense, virtue is excellence at being human, a skill that helps a person survive, thrive, form meaningful relationships, and find happinessLearning virtue is usually difficult at first, but becomes easier with practice over time until it becomes a habit.

Kantian virtue

Immanuel Kant, in his Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime, expresses true virtue as different from what commonly is known about this moral trait. In Kant’s view, to be goodhearted, benevolent and sympathetic is not regarded as true virtue. The only aspect that makes a human truly virtuous is to behave in accordance with moral principles. Kant presents an example for more clarification; suppose that you come across a needy person in the street; if your sympathy leads you to help that person, your response does not illustrate your virtue. In this example, since you do not afford helping all needy ones, you have behaved unjustly, and it is out of the domain of principles and true virtue. Kant applies the approach of four temperaments to distinguish truly virtuous people. According to Kant,among all people with diverse temperaments, a person withmelancholy frame of mind is the most virtuous whose thoughts, words and deeds are on the bases of principles.

Prudence and virtue

Seneca, the Roman Stoic, said that perfect prudence is indistinguishable from perfect virtue. Thus, in considering all consequences, a prudent person would act in the same way as a virtuous person.[citation needed] The same rationale was expressed by Plato in Meno, when he wrote that people only act in ways that they perceive will bring them maximum good. It is the lack of wisdom that results in the making of a bad choice instead of a prudent one. In this way, wisdom is the central part of virtue. Plato realized that if virtue was synonymous with wisdom then it could be taught, a possibility he had earlier discounted. He then added “correct belief” as an alternative to knowledge, proposing that knowledge is merely correct belief that has been thought through and “tethered”.

Auctoritas: “Charismatic Authority” The sense of one’s social standing, built up through experience, Pietas, and Industria.

Comitas: “Humor” Ease of manner, courtesy, openness, and friendliness.

Clementia: “Mercy” Mildness and gentleness.

Dignitas: “Dignity” A sense of self-worth, personal self respect,self-esteem.

Firmitas: “Tenacity” Strength of mind, the ability to stick to one’s purpose.

Frugalitas: “Frugalness” Economy and simplicity of style, without being miserly.

Gravitas: “Gravity” A sense of the importance of the matter at hand, responsibility and earnestness.

Honestas: “Respectibility” The image that one presents as a respectable member of society.

Humanitas: “Humanity” Refinement,civilization,learning,and being cultured.

Industria: “Industriousness” Hard work.

Pietas: “Dutifulness” More than religious piety; a respect for the natural order socially, politically, and religiously. Includes the ideas of patriotism and devotion to others.

Prudentia: “Prudence” Foresight, wisdom, and personal discretion.

Salubritas: “Wholesomeness” Health and cleanliness.

Severitas: “Sternness” Gravity, self-control.

Veritas: “Truthfulness” Honesty in dealing with others.

Virtus: “Manliness” Valor, excellence, courage, character, and worth.

Abundantia: “Abundance, Plenty” The ideal of there being enough food and prosperity for all segments of society.

Aequitas: “Equity” Fair dealing both within government and among the people.

Bonus Eventus: “Good fortune” Remembrance of important positive events.

Clementia: “Clemency” Mercy, shown to other nations.

Concordia: “Concord” Harmony among the Roman people, and also between Rome and other nations.

Felicitas: “Happiness, prosperity” A celebration of the best aspects of Roman society.

Fides: “Confidence” Good faith in all commercial and governmental dealings.

Fortuna: “Fortune” An acknowledgement of positive events.

Genius: “Spirit of Rome” Acknowledgement of the combined spirit of Rome, and its people.

Hilaritas: “Mirth, rejoicing” An expression of happy times.

Justitia: “Justice” As expressed by sensible laws and governance.

Laetitia: “Joy, Gladness” The celebration of thanksgiving, often of the resolution of crisis.

Liberalitas: “Liberality” Generous giving.

Libertas: “Freedom” A virtue which has been subsequently aspired to by all cultures.

Nobilitas: “Noblility” Noble action within the public sphere.

Ops: “Wealth” Acknowledgement of the prosperity of the Roman world.

Patientia: “Endurance, Patience” The ability to weather storms and crisis.

Pax: “Peace” A celebration of peace among society and between nations.

Pietas: “Piety, Dutifulness” People paying honor to the gods.

Providentia: “Providence, Fortethought” The ability of Roman society to survive trials and manifest a greater destiny.

Pudicita: “Modesty, Chastity.” A public expression which belies the accusation of “moral corruptness” in ancient Rome.

Salus: “Safety” Concern for public health and wellfare.

Securitas: “Confidence, Security” Brought by peace and efficient governance.

Spes: “Hope” Especially during times of difficulty.

Uberitas: “Fertility” Particularly concerning agriculture.

Virtus: “Courage” Especially of leaders within society and government.

In the Muslim Tradition

In the Muslim tradition the Qur’an is, as the word of God, the great repository of all virtues in earthly form, and the Prophet, particularly via his hadiths or reported sayings, is the exemplar of virtues in human form.

According to the Qur’an, Holy book of I-salami (which translated means “Peace”), Chapter (5) sūrat l-māidah (The Table spread with Food), proclaims that virtue is acceptance to the will of God, acceptance of the ways of God, acceptance of divine grace, of forgiveness, mercy, gracious, true repentance, the redemption, acceptance of the ways of Peace, the acceptance of the way things are. Foremost among God’s attributes are mercy and compassion or, in the canonical language of Arabic,I-rahmani and I-rahimi. Each of the 114 chapters of the Qur’an, with one exception, begins with the verse, “In the name of God the Compassionate, the Merciful”.[5]

The Arabic for compassion is I-rahmani. As a cultural influence, its roots abound in the Qur’an. A good Muslim is to commence each day, each prayer and each significant action by invoking God the Merciful and Compassionate, i.e. by reciting Bi Ism-i-Allah al-Rahman al-Rahim.

The Muslim scriptures urge compassion towards captives as well as to widows, orphans and the poor. Traditionally, Zakat, a toll tax to help the poor and needy, is obligatory upon all Muslims (9:60). One of the practical purposes of fasting or sawm during the month of Ramadan is to help one empathize with the hunger pangs of those less fortunate, to enhance sensitivity to the suffering of others and develop compassion for the poor and destitute.[6]

The Muslim virtues are: prayer, repentance, honesty, loyalty, sincerity, frugality, prudence, moderation, self-restraint, discipline, perseverance, patience, hope, dignity, courage, justice, tolerance, wisdom, good speech, respect, purity, courtesy, kindness, gratitude, generosity, contentment, and others.[7]

About virtues in I-salami tradition,acceptance to the ways of God according to attribute of God & his allgoodness. God is love,selfless, egoless,modesty & omnibenevolence.

Love of God & God’s goodness are eternity, infinite & limitless.

Omnimorous infinite love of God unconditionally is all of greatest among greatest of all love of all love. And God’s omnibenevolence are infinite, (Latin “omni” meaning all benevolence good).

According to Al-Qur’an, the Holy book of I-salami. Chapter (1) sūrat l-fātiḥah (The Opening) Verse 1:1:1 to 1:6:3 In name of my “God”, the most gracious, the most merciful, all praise and thanks to my “God”, the Lord of universe, the most gracious, the most merciful, Master (of the) day, the judgement, You alone we worships and you alone we ask for help, Guide us,the path,the straight.

Chapter (7) sūrat l-a’rāf (The Heights) Verse 7:37:1 to 7:37:37 7:37:1 to 7:37:15 Then who (is) more unjust than (one) who invented against my “God”, a lie or denies his verses? Those will reach them their portion from the book. 7:37:16 to 7:37:21 Until when they come to the our messengers to take them in death. (To take their souls), they say. 7:37:22 to 7:37:29 “Where are those (whom) you used to invoke from besides my “God”” they say. 7:37:30 to 7:37:37 “They strayed from us,” and they (will) testify against themselves that they were disbelievers.

Chapter (5) sūrat l-māidah (The Table spread with Food) Verse 5:15:1 to 5:16:18

5:15:1 to 5:15:5… O People of the book surely has come to you “our messenger”. 5:15:6 to 5:15:13 Making clear to you much of what you used from something that had been concealed in the book, (the scriptures) 5:15:14 to 5:15:18 And over looking of much surely has come to you. 5:15:19 to 5:15:22 From my “God”,”a light” & “a book”.

In translation, not adding in the book, The real key words of translation properly, “Old Aramaic transcripts”. Biblical Aramaic ‘Elaha “God”. אלהי Elahi definition “My god”. Elah definition “god”. The “i” after Elah in “Elahi” …”i” after “Elah” in “Elahi” “i” definition “my”.

5:15:23 to 5:16:2 Clear guides with it. 5:16:3 to 5:16:8 “God” those who seek his pleasure, (to the) ways ” (of) I-salami, “peace”.

5:16:7 subula to (through) the way. 5:16:8 l-salāmi (of) the peace 5:16:9 to 5:16:11 And brings them out from the darkness. 5:16:12 to 5:16:14 To “the light”, by “his permission”. 5:16:13 “I-nuri” the light. 5:16:14 bi-idh’nihi by his permission. 5:16:15 to 5:16:18 And guides them to the way the straight.

Subula l-salāmi ways peace ṣirāṭin mus’taqīmin ways straight 5:16:8 I-salami Peace

Chapter (5) sūrat l-māidah (The Table spread with Food) verse 5:54:1 to 5:55:13 5:54:1 to 5:54:8 O you who believe,whoever turn back among you from his religions 5:54:9 to 5:54:14 Then soon will be brought by God, the people whom he loves and they love him 5:54:15 to 5:54:20 Humble towards the believers, sterns towards the disbelievers. 5:54:21 to 5:54:28 Striving in way of my God and not fearing the blame, the critic. 5:54:29 to 5:54:32 That’s the grace of my God, he grants whom he wills. 5:54:35 to 5:55:13 And God, all encompassing (all guiding), all knowing, only your ally, God and his messengers and those who believe, and those who establish the prayer and give the purification works (I-zakata,) and they those who bow down.

The modesty, humility, selfless & egoless as virtues.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seven_virtues http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humility

In I-salami tradition. According to Al-Qur’an the holy book of I-salami. Chapter (32) sūrat l-sajdah (The Prostration), the verse “prostration” definition “face-down” to bow down to somebody, someone, something else first, with modesty, humility, humble,good manners & courtesy, to bow down with respect.

Humility is one of 7 heavenly virtues.

“Doing the pure goodness, the purification works never wrongdoing.”

And because God never need insolence. And Pride is one of 7 deadly sins.

“To bow down to somebody, someone, something else first with modesty, with humble, with humility, with good manners, with courtesy, with respect (doing pure goodness) never wrongdoing.”

Bahá’í tradition

In the Bahá’í Faith, virtues are direct spiritual qualities that the human soul possesses, inherited from God Himself. The development and manifestation of these virtues is the theme of the Hidden Words of Bahá’u’lláh and are discussed in great detail as the underpinnings of a divinely-inspired society by `Abdu’l-Bahá in such texts as The Secret of Divine Civilization.

Many of the virtues are described with special significance in Bahá’í scripture, such as:

  • Truthfulness – the “foundation of all human virtues”.
  • Justice – the “best beloved of all things (to God)”.
  • Love – the basis for God’s creation of mankind.
  • Humility – a condition for being the recipient of God’s grace.
  • Trustworthiness – the “goodliest vesture in the sight of God”.

The Virtues Project developed by Canadian Bahá’ís Linda Popov, Dan Popov, and John Kavelin, is greatly inspired by the Bahá’í perspective on virtues.

Hindu virtues

Hinduism, or Sanatana Dharma (Dharma means moral duty), has pivotal virtues that everyone keeping their Dharma is asked to follow, for they are distinct qualities of manusya (mankind) that allow one to be in the mode of goodness. There are three modes of material nature (guna), as described in the Vedas and other Indian ScripturesSattva (goodness,maintenance, stillness, intelligence), Rajas (passion, creation, energy, activity), and Tamas (ignorance, restraint, inertia, destruction). Every person harbours a mixture of these modes in varying degrees. A person in the mode of Sattva has that mode in prominence in his nature, which he obtains by following the virtues of the Dharma.

The modes of Sattva are as follows:[citation needed]

  • Altruism: Selfless service to all humanity
  • Restraint and Moderation: This is having restraint and moderation in all things. Sexual relations, eating, and other pleasurable activities should be kept in moderation. Some orthodox followers also believe in sex only in marriage, and being chaste. The degree of restraint and moderation depends on the sect and belief system. Some people believe it means celibacy, while others believe in walking the golden path of moderation, which is to say, not too far to the side of forceful control and total abandonment of all human pleasures, but also not too far to the side of total indulgence and the total abandonment of moderation.
  • Honesty: One is required to be honest with oneself, one’s family, one’s friends, and with all of humanity.
  • Cleanliness: Outer cleanliness is to be cultivated for good health and hygiene. Inner cleanliness is cultivated through devotion to God, selflessness, non-violence and all the other virtues. Inner cleanliness is maintained by refraining from intoxicants.
  • Protection and reverence for the Earth.
  • Universality: Showing tolerance and respect for everyone, everything, and the way of the Universe.
  • Peace: One must cultivate a peaceful manner in order to benefit oneself and those around one.
  • Non-Violence/Ahimsa: This means not killing or being violent in any way to any life form or sentient being. This is why those who practice this Dharma are vegetarians, because they see the slaughter of animals for the purpose of food as violent on the grounds that there are less violent ways to maintain a healthy diet.
  • Reverence for elders and teachers: The virtue of reverence for those who have wisdom and those who selflessly teach in love is very important to learn. The Guru or spiritual teacher is one of the highest principals in many Vedic-based spiritualities and is likened to that of God.

Buddhist tradition

Buddhist practice as outlined in the Noble Eightfold Path can be regarded as a progressive list of virtues.

  1. Right View – Realizing the Four Noble Truths (samyag-vyāyāma, sammā-vāyāma).
  2. Right Mindfulness – Mental ability to see things for what they are with clear consciousness (samyak-smṛti, sammā-sati).
  3. Right Concentration – Wholesome one-pointedness of mind (samyak-samādhi, sammā-samādhi).

Buddhism’s four brahmavihara (“Divine States”) can be more properly regarded as virtues in the European sense. They are:

  1. Metta/Maitri: loving-kindness towards all; the hope that a person will be well; loving kindness is “the wish that all sentient beings, without any exception, be happy.”[8]
  2. Karuṇā: compassion; the hope that a person’s sufferings will diminish; compassion is the “wish for all sentient beings to be free from suffering.”[8]
  3. Mudita: altruistic joy in the accomplishments of a person, oneself or other; sympathetic joy – “the wholesome attitude of rejoicing in the happiness and virtues of all sentient beings.”[8]
  4. Upekkha/Upeksha: equanimity, or learning to accept both loss and gain, praise and blame, success and failure with detachment, equally, for oneself and for others. Equanimity means “not to distinguish between friend, enemy or stranger, but to regard every sentient being as equal. It is a clear-minded tranquil state of mind – not being overpowered by delusions, mental dullness or agitation.”[9]

There are also the Paramitas (“perfections”).

In Theravada Buddhism‘s canonical Buddhavamsa[10] the Ten Perfections (dasa pāramiyo) are (original terms in Pali):

  1. Dāna parami : generosity, giving of oneself.
  2. Sīla parami : virtue, morality, proper conduct.
  3. Nekkhamma parami : renunciation.
  4. Paññā parami : transcendental wisdom, insight.
  5. Viriya (also spelt vīriya) parami : energy, diligence, vigour, effort.
  6. Khanti parami : patience, tolerance, forbearance, acceptance, endurance.
  7. Sacca parami : truthfulness, honesty.
  8. Adhiṭṭhāna (adhitthana) parami : determination, resolution.
  9. Mettā parami : loving-kindness.

10. Upekkhā (also spelt upekhā) parami : equanimity, serenity.

In Mahayana Buddhism, the Lotus Sutra (Saddharmapundarika), lists the Six Perfections as (original terms in Sanskrit):

  1. Dāna paramita: generosity, giving of oneself (in Chinese, 布施波羅蜜).
  2. Śīla paramita : virtue, morality, discipline, proper conduct (持戒波羅蜜).
  3. Kṣānti (kshanti) paramita : patience, tolerance, forbearance, acceptance, endurance (忍辱波羅蜜).
  4. Vīrya paramita : energy, diligence, vigour, effort, perseverance (精進波羅蜜).
  5. Dhyāna paramita : one-pointed concentration, contemplation (禪定波羅蜜).
  6. Prajñā paramita : wisdom, insight (智慧波羅蜜).

In the Ten Stages (Dasabhumika) Sutra, four more Paramitas are listed:

7. Upāya paramita: skillful means.

8. Praṇidhāna (pranidhana) paramita: vow, resolution, aspiration, determination.

9. Bala paramita: spiritual power.

10. Jñāna paramita: knowledge.

In Chinese philosophy

“Virtue”, translated from Chinese de (), is also an important concept in Chinese philosophy, particularly DaoismDe (Chinese: 德; pinyinWade–Gileste) originally meant normative “virtue” in the sense of “personal character; inner strength; integrity”, but semantically changed to moral “virtue; kindness; morality”. Note the semantic parallel for English virtue, with an archaic meaning of “inner potency; divine power” (as in “by virtue of”) and a modern one of “moral excellence; goodness”.

Confucian moral manifestations of “virtue” include ren (“humanity“), xiao (“filial piety“), and li (“proper behavior, performance of rituals“). In Confucianism, the notion of ren – according to Simon Leys – means “humanity” and “goodness”. Ren originally had the archaic meaning in the Confucian Book of Poems of “virility”, but progressively took on shades of ethical meaning. (On the origins and transformations of this concept see Lin Yu-sheng: “The evolution of the pre-Confucian meaning of jen and the Confucian concept of moral autonomy,” Monumenta Serica, vol.31, 1974-75.)

The Daoist concept of De, however, is more subtle, pertaining to the “virtue” or ability that an individual realizes by following the Dao (“the Way”). One important normative value in much of Chinese thinking is that one’s social status should result from the amount of virtue that one demonstrates, rather than from one’s birth. In the AnalectsConfucius explains de as follows: “He who exercises government by means of his virtue may be compared to the north polar star, which keeps its place and all the stars turn towards it.”[11]

Chinese martial morality

Samurai values

In Hagakure, the quintessential book of the samurai, Yamamoto Tsunetomo encapsulates his views on ‘virtue’ in the four vows he makes daily:

  1. Never to be outdone in the way of the samurai or Bushidō.
  2. To be of good use to the master.
  3. To be filial to my parents.
  4. To manifest great compassion and act for the sake of Man.

Tsunetomo goes on to say:

If one dedicates these four vows to the gods and Buddhas every morning, he will have the strength of two men and never slip backward. One must edge forward like the inchworm, bit by bit. The gods and Buddhas, too, first started with a vow.

The Bushidō code is typified by seven virtues^ :

  • Rectitude (義,gi)
  • Courage (勇,yuu)
  • Benevolence (仁,jin)
  • Respect (礼,rei)
  • Honesty (誠,sei)
  • Honor (誉,yo)
  • Loyalty (忠,chuu)

Others that are sometimes added to these:

  • Filial piety (孝,kō)
  • Wisdom (智,chi)
  • Care for the aged (悌,tei)

View of Nietzsche

Philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche often took a more cynical view on virtue. A few of his key thoughts were as follows:

  • “One virtue is more of a virtue than two, because it is more of a knot for one’s destiny to cling to.”[citation needed]
  • “Virtue itself is offensive.”[citation needed]
  • “When virtue has slept, it will arise all the more vigorous.”[citation needed]
  • “Genuine honesty, assuming that this is our virtue and we cannot get rid of it, we free spirits – well then, we will want to work on it with all the love and malice at our disposal and not get tired of ‘perfecting’ ourselves in our virtue, the only one we have left: may its glory come to rest like a gilded, blue evening glow of mockery over this aging culture and its dull and dismal seriousness!” (Beyond Good and Evil, §227)

Virtues according to Benjamin Franklin

These are the virtues[12] that Benjamin Franklin used to develop what he called ‘moral perfection’. He had a checklist in a notebook to measure each day how he lived up to his virtues.

They became known through Benjamin Franklin’s autobiography.

  1. Temperance: Eat not to Dullness. Drink not to Elevation.
  2. Silence: Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself. Avoid trifling Conversation.
  3. Order: Let all your Things have their Places. Let each Part of your Business have its Time.
  4. Resolution: Resolve to perform what you ought. Perform without fail what you resolve.
  5. Frugality: Make no Expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e. Waste nothing.
  6. Industry: Lose no Time. Be always employed in something useful. Cut off all unnecessary Actions.
  7. Sincerity: Use no hurtful Deceit. Think innocently and justly; and, if you speak, speak accordingly.
  8. Justice: Wrong none, by doing Injuries or omitting the Benefits that are your Duty.
  9. Moderation: Avoid Extremes. Forbear resenting Injuries so much as you think they deserve.

10. Cleanliness: Tolerate no Uncleanness in Body, Clothes or Habitation.

11. Tranquility: Be not disturbed at Trifles, or at Accidents common or unavoidable.

12. Chastity: Rarely use Venery but for Health or Offspring; Never to Dullness, Weakness, or the Injury of your own or another’s Peace or Reputation.

13. Humility: Imitate Jesus and Socrates.

Virtues as emotions

Marc Jackson in his book Emotion and Psyche puts forward a new development of the virtues. He identifies the virtues as what he calls the good emotions “The first group consisting of love, kindness, joy, faith, awe and pity is good”[13] These virtues differ from older accounts of the virtues because they are not character traits expressed by action, but emotions that are to be felt and developed by feeling not acting.

In Objectivism

Ayn Rand held that in her morality, the morality of reason, is contained in a single axiom: existence exists, and a single choice: to live. All values and virtues proceed from these. To live, man must hold three fundamental values that one develops and achieves in life: Reason, Purpose, and Self-Esteem. A value is “that which one acts to gain and/or keep … and the virtue[s] [are] the act[ions] by which one gains and/or keeps it.” The primary virtue in Objectivist ethics is rationality, which as Rand meant it is “the recognition and acceptance of reason as one’s only source of knowledge, one’s only judge of values and one’s only guide to action.”[14] These values are achieved by passionate and consistent action and the virtues are the policies for achieving those fundamental values.[15] Ayn Rand describes seven virtues: rationality, productiveness, pride, independence, integrity, honesty and justice. The first three represent the three primary virtues that correspond to the three fundamental values, whereas the final four are derived from the virtue of rationality. She claims that virtue is not an end in itself, that virtue is not its own reward nor sacrificial fodder for the reward of evil, that life is the reward of virtue and happiness is the goal and the reward of life. Man has a single basic choice: to think or not, and that is the gauge of his virtue. Moral perfection is an unbreached rationality, not the degree of your intelligence but the full and relentless use of your mind, not the extent of your knowledge but the acceptance of reason as an absolute.[16]

Vice as opposite

The opposite of a virtue is a vice. Vice is a habitual, repeated practice of wrongdoing. One way of organizing the vices is as the corruption of the virtues.

As Aristotle noted, however, the virtues can have several opposites. Virtues can be considered the mean between two extremes, as the Latin maxim dictates in medio stat virtus – in the centre lies virtue. For instance, both cowardice and rashness are opposites of courage; contrary to prudence are both over-caution and insufficient caution; the opposites of humility are shame and pride. A more “modern” virtue, tolerance, can be considered the mean between the two extremes of narrow-mindedness on the one hand and over-acceptance on the other. Vices can therefore be identified as the opposites of virtues – but with the caveat that each virtue could have many different opposites, all distinct from each other.

In modern psychology

Christopher Peterson and Martin Seligman, two leading researchers in positive psychology, recognizing the deficiency inherent in psychology‘s tendency to focus on dysfunction rather than on what makes a healthy and stable personality, set out to develop a list of “Character Strengths and Virtues“.[17] After three years of study, 24 traits (classified into six broad areas of virtue) were identified, having “a surprising amount of similarity across cultures and strongly indicat[ing] a historical and cross-cultural convergence.”[18] These six categories of virtue are courage, justice, humanity, temperance, transcendence, and wisdom.[19] Some psychologists suggest that these virtues are adequately grouped into fewer categories; for example, the same 24 traits have been grouped into simply: Cognitive Strengths, Temperance Strengths, and Social Strengths.[20]

virtue (noun)

virtue, virtuousness, moral strength, moral tone
goodness, sheer goodness
saintliness, holiness, spirituality, odor of sanctity, sanctity
righteousness, justice
uprightness, rectitude, moral rectitude, character, integrity, principles, high principle, honor, personal honor, probity
perfect honor, stainlessness, irreproachability
avoidance of guilt, guiltlessness, innocence
morality, ethics, morals
sexual morality, temperance, chastity, purity
straight and narrow path, virtuous conduct, christian conduct, good behavior, well-spent life, duty done
good conscience, clear conscience, conscious rectitude
self-improvement, moral rearmament

Other Forms
essential part: virtue, capacity
ability: capacity, faculty, virtue, property, intrinsicality
utility: virtue, function, capacity, potency, clout, power
goodness: virtue, worth, value, price
goodness: virtuous character, virtue
conduct: good behavior, virtue
manliness: virtue, chivalry
philanthropy: idealism, ideals, virtue
right: righteousness, virtue
morals: morals, morality, virtue
probity: probity, rectitude, uprightness, goodness, sanctity, virtue
innocence: freedom from sin, unfallen state, saintliness, purity of heart, state of grace, virtue
purity: moral purity, morals, good morals, morality, virtue
piety: piety, piousness, goodness, virtue
sanctity: goodness, cardinal virtues, theological virtues, virtue

in·teg·ri·ty

in·teg·ri·ty (ĭn-tĕgʹrĭ-tē) noun

1.     Steadfast adherence to a strict moral or ethical code. See synonyms at honesty.

2.     The state of being unimpaired; soundness.

3.     The quality or condition of being whole or undivided; completeness.

[Middle English integrite, from Old French, from Latin integritās, soundness, from integer, whole, complete.]

integrity (noun)

whole: integration, indivisibility, indiscerptibility, integrity, oneness, unity
probity: good character, moral fiber, honesty, soundness, incorruptibility, integrity
virtue: uprightness, rectitude, moral rectitude, character, integrity, principles, high principle, honor, personal honor, probity
Ethics

Morality

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