A Critical Appraisal of the Notion of Arete in Heraclitus Philosophy


The notion of “arete” is significant in the philosophy of Heraclitus. However, he appears to be known explicitly only through his flux dictum. This essay examined Heraclitus notion of arete as one of his contributions to philosophical progress in ancient history of Western Philosophy. The method of analysis and criticism was employed in the study. It was discovered that Heraclitus is worthy and deserving of a place in the history of moral philosophy as a moral philosopher, in view of the multidimensionality and implication of his thoughts as espoused in the doctrine of arete. The paper concluded that Heraclitus remained the original source of the notion of moral excellence as discussed in moral philosophy