Aristotle – The Nicomachean Ethics
Chapter I: The Object of Life
I. Every rational activity aims at some end or good. One end (like one activity) may be subordinate to another.
Arts, sciences, etc. All of these strive for the outcome of a good or purpose (Aristotle defines good as ‘that at which all things are aimed’), some activities are thus directly linked to outcomes that are done for a particular end goal in mind. Some are done for their own sake, while others are done for a ‘supreme good’. Aristotle uses the example of horse trapping being subordinate to horsemanship which is related to military action with the intended outcome being of victory. It doesn’t matter what you are doing only that all outcomes are recognized to be generally achieved for the good. “Does it not follow, then, that a knowledge of the good is of great importance to us for the conduct of our lives? Are we not more likely to achieve our aim if we have a target?” This is why Aristotle believes it is important to outline the definition of what is ‘Good’ and how that is achieved by these (or specific) activities.