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2. [11] Probably therefore nobody actually identifies choice with opinion in general. But neither is it the same as some particular opinion.1 For it is our choice of good or evil that determines our character, not our opinion about good or evil. 2. [12] And we choose to take or avoid some good or evil thing, but we opine what a thing is, or for whom it is advantageous, or how it is so:2 we do not exactly form an opinion to take or avoid a thing. 2. [13] Also we praise a choice rather for choosing the right thing, but an opinion for opining in the right way. And we choose only things that we absolutely know to be good, we opine things we do not quite certainly know to be true. 2. [14] Nor do the same persons appear to excel both at choosing and at forming opinions: some people seem to form opinions better, but yet to choose the wrong things from wickedness. 2. [15] That choice is preceded or accompanied by the formation of an opinion is immaterial, for that is not the point we are considering, but whether choice is the same thing as some form of opinion.2. [16]

What then are the genus and differentia of Choice, inasmuch as it is not any of the things above mentioned? It manifestly belongs to the genus voluntary action; but not every voluntary act is chosen. 2. [17] Perhaps we may define it as voluntary action preceded by deliberation, since choice involves reasoning and some process of thought. Indeed previous deliberation seems to be implied by the very term proaireton, which denotes something chosen before other things.3.

As for Deliberation, do people deliberate about everything—are all things possible objects of deliberation—, or are there some things about which deliberation is impossible?

1 i.e., an opinion or belief that so-and-so is good, and is within our power to obtain.

2 Perhaps to be emended ‘how it is to be achieved.’

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