Man is a social being with an inner drive that compels him or her to form relationships that aid better interaction in the day to day operations. Most people are confined to associations based on different natures. There are three min types of friendships: friendship based on utility, those grounded on virtue, and friendship based on pleasure.
Utility friendship is where people align themselves with those of mutual benefits. As the most common type of relationship, it is selfishly motivated by nature as it is geared towards mutual satisfactory. In an inclination of mutual benefit, people intrinsically value each other as they endeavor to grow and develop their lives. As close friends, a bond that motivates the growth of people’s trust for one another is attained. A sense of intimacy that allows these people share vital information is achieved thus strengthening their relationship. In addition to the inherent communion value attained, utility friendship usually creates psychological benefits to individuals, where one is passionately induced into openness and self-clarification. In this state, it is easy to examine the motives of everyone in order to ascertain that none is of self-interest but mutual benefit.
Regardless of the many benefits attained in a utility friendship, Aristotle mentioned that utility is temporary in nature hence relationships built on this basis are shallow and get dissolved easily. Inherent dignity in this type of friendship makes people value one another more. Based on how fragile utility friendship is, dignity makes the short term affectionate relationships last longer. Profound desire for more profits is common among the old people as compared to those of a younger age. Therefore, the old people are more oriented in the development of utility friendships as they seek to make massive profits. On the other hand, love grounds many young people. The universally developed emotions by young people in the process of interactions, act as a trigger for pleasure.
Good distinctive relationships make life flourish as people are intimately into one another. Virtues play a greater role in love because of their significance in binding parties. It is important to comprehend the basis of relationships one gets into. Vices should be the least driving forces into love. Aristotle attests that selfless centered relationships are more essential due to their constructive nature. Such relationships can be sustained over a long period of time.
Extra effort is needed to implement basic virtues that help validate and nature relationships. Effective communication is fundamental on the sustainability and growth of a relationship. It basically entails listening to listening keenly and understanding message passed before reacting to it. For one to communicate efficiently, certainty about what his or her partner needs or feels is essential. Once one is connected to another, relationships grow as they both know their preferences. In the process of building trust through communication, one needs to dedicate more time as well as attention in the relationship. Above all, honesty and openness are crucial in such relationships.
Besides intimacy, it is pleasurable and beneficial thus people in virtuous relationships automatically gain the benefits of the other two relationships. With high standards of respect and care for other people, a lot of joy is experienced. In the long run, manifestation utility takes course. This is the most valuable type of friendship because it is based on mutual appreciation of character rather than transactional value to be gained.
Patience, as one of the key virtues, allows partners in relationships to understand each other. The differences in strengths and weaknesses, of partners require extreme patience to develop healthy relationships. Patience goes hand in hand with acceptance, communication and adjustment. Some situations need one to adjust and compromise themselves for the best interest of their relationships. In conjunction to that, partners need to be kindhearted and poses the art of forgiving one another. Virtuous relationship is considered perfect as it is more romantic since it goes beyond utility and pleasure.
As the least preferred type of friendship, relationships based on pleasure are very complicated. Pleasure is natural and always available. However, its uncertainty may cause pain and discomfort. In these relationships, people undergo different phases in how they perceive enjoyment, something that triggers a significant change over time. Here, people live by guidance of their emotions as they ultimately pursue pleasure above everything. Once they fulfill their momentary desires, many experience a quick change in their desires which rapidly ends their passionate attachments hence causing pain.
Aristotle’s account on friendships is compelling since he held a high view about friendship. He believed that true friendship supersedes justice and honor because of its great value. Binding of cities and societies is possible because of friendship. In the current world, many things have lost value hence people need a sense of better feeling which can be attained through development of virtuous friendship. His opinion was that, one requires someone who is always available in times of need to help each other develop and improve. In the process, people enrich their lives hence earning happiness, the core integral part required in living a good life.
He advises people to make as many friends as possible. With the existence of the dynamic technology, much advancement developed has made communication across the world an easy task. Platforms like Facbook, Instagram, Skype and Twitter play a significant role in many people’s lives. They influence the natures of interactions developed on a daily basis. As at now, it is not necessary for people to travel in order to meet their friends as they can video call through platforms like Skype and Facebook. Nevertheless, as he argued, many relationships developed through social media platforms like Facebook are based on utility and pleasure. They are based on ideal factors as many are fake, which makes them shallow and easily dissolved in due cause. On these platforms, many people claim to be having fun while others innocently fall in love thus end up being hurt when they realize the truth. He argued that virtuous relationships are the best as they involve having true friends who deeply care and respect each other. As much as friendship has many dimensions, it is upon everyone to take time, figure out what is best for them. To prevent future pain, one needs to avoid rushing into relationships and taking into consideration key factors that aid in development of positive relationships. They include: Appreciation of differences, effective communication, investing enough time in relationships, trust and love.
Differences in relationships pose the biggest challenges that people need to solve in order to develop positive relationships. The desire and expectations one has when he or she is getting into a relationship can be cut short in cases where the conditions available are below the standards of what an individual expected. To create a comfortable foundation for everyone, all differences need to be accepted and appreciated. Appreciating people’s differences makes them feel they are valued. Effective communication is a key factor in strengthening developing as well as existing relationships. It entails listening keenly, understanding and responding appropriately. Poor communication often results in misleading interpretation of information that poses a great danger to relationships. In such situations of poor communication, some people develop low esteem and low morale which drives many out of relationships. Aristotle argued that virtuous friendship is the hardest to develop because everyone needed to mutually comprehend and appreciate each other’s virtues hence needed more time to develop such relationships. Time is a crucial tool in building intimate, pleasurable and beneficial relationships. Over significant time, people are able to build trust in their relations. Trust makes people feel confident, reliable as well as they feel safe both physically and emotionally. Trust and love are the ultimate factors that highly contribute positive relationships.
Aristotle acknowledges the three types of friendships. Depending on the goals and targets of an individual, one needs to determine the type of association required. Individuals, who require long lasting relationships, need to find virtuous friends. However, we all need to appreciate our true friends as it is very costly to make one.