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[3] We will discuss these questions in order, after we have first defined acting unjustly.

Let injustice, then, be defined as voluntarily causing injury contrary to the law. Now, the law is particular or general. By particular, I mean the written law in accordance with which a state is administered; by general, the unwritten regulations which appear to be universally recognized. Men act voluntarily when they know what they do, and do not act under compulsion. What is done voluntarily is not always done with premeditation; but what is done with premeditation is always known to the agent, for no one is ignorant of what he does with a purpose.1

1 προαίρεσις (premeditation, deliberate or moral choice) is always voluntary, but all voluntary action is not premeditated; we sometimes act on the spur of the moment. Choice is a voluntary act, the result of deliberate counsel, including the use of reason and knowledge. In Aristot. Nic. Eth. 11 Aristotle defines προαίρεσις as “a deliberate appetition of (longing for, ὄρεξις) things in our power,” as to which we should necessarily be well-informed.

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