world encountered by human beings, according to Aristotle? What is the disclosedness reached by human beings? The ἴδιον of human beings is τὸ μόνον ἀγαθοῦ καὶ κακοῦ καὶ δίκαιου καὶ ἀδίκου καὶ τῶν ἄλλων αἴσθησιν ἔχειν,17 “that he alone (as human) has αἴσθησις, lives in the perception of good and evil, of proper and improper,” of συμφέρον and βλαβερὸν.18 Therefore, we will ask initially: what does it genuinely mean that the world in which human beings move themselves is encountered in the character of “what is conducive,” in the character of the συμφέρον?19
The συμφέροντα, the “characters of what is conducive” are:
1. τὰ πρός τὸ τέλος,20 “that which, in itself, is toward the end.”
2. κατὰ τὰς πράξεις,21 “within the purview proper to πρᾶξις.”
3. σκοπὸς πρόκειται τῷ συμβουλεύοντι,22 “the fact that what one looks toward lies before the one that reckons.”
On this basis, we will characterize the συμφέρον as well as the ἀγαθόν. The συμφέρον is the manner and mode in which the world, as mattering to human beings, is there for us. The connection with the ἀγαθόν, will come out of the matter itself.
Ad 1. Συμφέρον is “that which is conducive to . . .,” toward the end. Something that is conducive is, in itself, a being that has a reference to something. This referring to something is not accidental to that which is conducive, but constitutes its very conduciveness. That to which what is conducive as such refers is designated as τὸ τέλος. What we are to understand by τέλος is found in the second determination.
Ad 2. Πρᾶξις is “concern,” and as such it means nothing other than bringing-something-to-its-end. Therein lies the fact that concern has in itself an end, specifically an end as that toward which concern as concern moves. The συμφέρον is the referring to the end of a concern; it carries with it, and is conducive to, the bringing-to-an-end of something.
Ad 3. The συμφέρον is σκοπὸς. Aristotle characterizes the συμβουλεύεσθαι in Book 6, Chapter 10 of the Nicomachean Ethics as ζητεῖν τι καὶ λογίζεσθαι,23 a “searching for something in the mode [καί is explicative here] of deliberating”—λογίζεσθαι. It is in this way that I “bring to language” that which I look toward in deliberating, that which is conducive to the end of concern. In πρᾶξις there is an end, that which is conducive is brought to its end, in every concern an end is fixed in advance. The λογίζεσθαι is the genuine mode of the fulfillment
17. Pol. Α 2, 1253 a 16 sqq.
18. Pol. Α 2, 1253 a 14 sq.
19. Rhet. Α 6, 1362 a 18.
20. Rhet. Α 6, 1362 a 19.
21. Rhet. Α 6, 1362 a 19 sq.
22. Rhet. Α 6, 1362 a 17 sq.
23. Eth. Nic. Ζ 10, 1142 a 31 sq.: τὸ γὰρ βουλεύεσθαι ζητεῖν τι ἐστίν. Ζ 10, 1142 b 1 sq.: ὁ δὲ βουλευόμενος ζητεῖ καὶ λογίζεται.