One of the most confusing and astounding habits of human beings is that of smoking. I always find this to be one of the most destructive habits that I find humanity has adopted. You may ask yourself what relationship smoking has with philosophy. The truth is that there is a very close relationship between smoking and what philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle believed. Plato and Aristotle believed in the importance of balancing body, mind, and soul. Therefore, it is important to identify the right habits that would ensure that every action you take on a daily basis is geared towards good health. Smoking provides one with instant gratification but on the other hand creates future health issues. While one may derive happiness and comfort from smoking a cigarette, the eventual result is deteriorating health.
Smoking is a current problem that affects most people living in urban societies. Smoking can be defined as a habit of consuming tobacco through the inhalation of the emanating smoke from a cigarette. However, other forms of smoking include cannabis smoking. There are other methods of consuming tobacco, which includes chewing. Cumulatively, the consumption of tobacco has been found to be detrimental to ones health (Smith 10). This habit began in the years between five thousand BC and three thousand BC. You would expect that after the incorporation of such a destructive habit among the people, one would find the need to end this habit sooner rather than later. However, the habit went on to spread to the rest of the world.
Today, more people are smoking than they did in the early 16th century. The reason behind this is that there has been a heavy commercialization of the tobacco industry. The major companies that trade in the product have heavily invested in marketing and lobbying. This has resulted in little or no effort in the fight against the habit. However, the recent past has seen a steep reduction in the consumption of the product. Governments around the world are instituting laws that discourage smoking. One of the most common ways of discouraging this habit is by insisting that the manufacturing companies warn consumers of the risks involved in smoking (Broadie 103). These companies are required to put up warning signs on their products. They are also required to put up the required warn the consumer in their advertisements that go on the media.
In the past, smoking was seen as a reserve of the rich. This is because tobacco was only available in certain areas around the world. However, the recent past has seen an increase in the efficiency of the transport sector. This means that tobacco can be grown half way across the world and be consumed on the other end. You can therefore expect that the cost and availability of the product has gone down. Most of the people who are involved in the habit are individuals in the teenage age group and in their 20s (Broadie 105). Due to the presence of nicotine in tobacco, the habit of smoking can quickly become addictive. What you may start as a pass time habit, or a habit that you participate in when partying may eventually become addictive.
Recent studies have successfully related smoking to several forms of cancer. Some of the cancers that may be caused by smoking include the cancer of the throat, lung cancer, among other common forms of cancers. Lung cancer is considered the most dangerous form of cancer. This is because it can be rapid and treating it can be very difficult. The process of quitting smoking can be a difficult journey (Carveth et al. 97). However, the benefits of quitting smoking can help you in avoiding very costly medication and therapy in the future. Some people have been found to use medical methods of quitting while others have quit cold turkey. Therefore, it is important to curb this habit at the earliest time possible.
Plato and Aristotle have been found to differ in terms of the way they seen your body, mind and soul. According to Plato, the body, mind, and soul function differently. However, Aristotle finds that the three function together. Aristotle argues that one of the three elements of an individual will influence the other either directly or indirectly. The two arguments are found to have a difference in how they would be viewed by people who have different views. One such instance includes the fact that some people do not entirely believe that their course of lives is predetermined (Meyer 575). You can say that such individuals do not believe that your future is hard wired in your personality. In comes Aristotles argument, which goes ahead to prove that one can determine their own habits based on the actions they take, and controlling their own thoughts.
Plato states that the body will act in a different way in comparison to an individual. This can be proven by the fact that certain actions do not happen out of your own will. You can look at actions such as breathing, and the heart beat as involuntary actions that Plato may have had in mind when stating this ideology. With regards to the soul, one can focus on the individual personality of an individual. According to Plato, this aspect o an individual has already been molded according to their upbringing. This can result in the individual becoming a well-rounded person or you could end up becoming a social misfit. With regards to the mind, Plato argues that the different events around your life can affect your thoughts. However, Aristotle argues that you can control your thoughts, soul, and thus the body. This can be achieved by the constant guidance and control of your actions, thoughts, and beliefs. This will in turn cause one to control their habits.
You can see that Aristotle provides the most agreeable argument. This is because in controlling ones thoughts bodily functions you can control your habits. This is because each one of these elements affects the other in one way or another. While there is some truth in Platos argument, the fact is that it takes away your control (Broadie 113). Platos argument distracts you from the fact that your habits are in your direct control. Controlling these elements in yourself can ensures that you avoid destructive habits. It also ensures that you continue to identify the best ways of handling certain elements of life that can derail you. These include social pressure and depression. These are the main reasons people have been found to partake in destructive habits. Agreeing with Aristotles argument means that you take control of your life. It also means that you continue to participate in activities that positively influence your body, mind, and soul.
Aristotles argument on the connection between the body, mind, and soul clearly shows how each is related to the other. The soul is our inner self that is involved in the development of emotions, which can affect out thought patterns. By affecting our thought patterns, the soul has influenced the mind. The mind on the other hand is involved in the decision making process. You can see that when you think of taking certain actions, it is possible to identify that the individual continues to take either actions that may affect the body positively or negatively (Smith 9). Therefore, the body will always reflect ones state of mind. Having all these elements in control ensure that you provide your mind, body, and soul with the most stable environment.
Aristotles beliefs and arguments address the habit of smoking. Some people smoke because they are stressed, while others do so for pleasure. Among the younger smokers, you are bound to find individuals that smoke because they are facing social pressure to conform. The soul affects and controls ones emotional situation. Therefore, the emotional situation of an individual may cause them to form a habit of smoking (Arthur 79). You could feel hat you need to conform, which in turn can affect your thought patter. Your thought patter can direct you to decide to smoke. This in turn when repeated can for the habit of smoking. This cannot be achieved without the body exhibiting the habit of smoking. Latter in your life, you are bound to experience the effects of smoking in the form of diseases and loss of money to medical care. Therefore, it is important for you to have your mind, body, and soul in control. This will ensure that you continue to enjoy the peace and comfort that comes with an effective conformity of the three.
In conclusion, smoking is a habit that can be formed due to ignorance or social pressure. Individual pressure can also be attributed to the habit. However, when you identify with Aristotles argument, you can see that you can succeed in the process of quitting. The only thing you need to do is to instill within yourself the belief that the habit is within your control. One can chose to quite cold turkey or they can do so with the help of medical supplements. These include the use of medically prescribed nicotine that will help in offsetting the addiction. However, it is also important to address all aspects of the body, mind, and soul. You will have to emotionalize the process of quitting. By thinking about the positive results of quitting, you will be able to develop a mindset that will push your body to conform to the new habits. The new habits will in turn influence the body positively. Immediately you start quitting you will feel the need to go back to the habit, but the correct mindset, and emotional support will ensure that you continue with the process of quitting. Therefore, monitoring the state of you mind, body, and soul on a consistent basis will ensure that you continue to achieve your goals. The habit of smoking may take an average of six months to be declared defeated. Therefore, this is a period that one needs to be focused on the final results rather that the causing factors that resulted in the habit in the first place.
Arthur, John. Morality and Moral Controversies: Readings in Moral, Social, and Political Philosophy. Upper Saddle River, N.J: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2005. 73- 95. Print.
Broadie, Sarah. "Virtue And Beyond In Plato And Aristotle." Southern Journal Of Philosophy 43.(2005): 97-114. Academic Search Premier. Web. 24 Apr. 2015.
Carveth, Rod, James B. South, and William Irwin. Mad Men and Philosophy: Nothing Is As It Seems. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, 2010. 88- 150. Internet resource.
Meyer, Susan Sauve. "Virtue And Reason In Plato And Aristotle." Ethics 123.3 (2013): 572-577. Academic Search Premier. Web. 24 Apr. 2015.
Smith, C. U. M. "The Triune Brain In Antiquity: Plato, Aristotle, Erasistratus." Journal Of The History Of The Neurosciences 19.1 (2010): 1-14. Academic Search Premier. Web. 24 Apr. 2015.
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