In the Nicomachean Ethics, the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle posited an idea for the proper course of behavior or qualities in an individual. He stated that the virtuous course of action is always the mean between two extremes of excess (too much) and deficiency (too little). For example, between the extreme of recklessness and cowardice lies the virtue of courage. This idea is sometimes called the Aristotelian mean.

Although Aristotle's ethics have been refuted by many philosophers, both ancient and modern, the Aristotelian mean provides an interesting model for considering how best to operate in a community. This page lists some seemingly contradictory ideals that have come up for community (especially with regards to Wiki).

See also: a translation of Aristotle's idea, NoSuddenMovements.


I was thinking about some of the great ideas that come up on this and other wikis about how to interact with a community, and how they are often contradictory. I think that achieving an AristotelianMean between opposing suggestions can help get the best results for a community. This page is kinda shallow, but I'll try to add some more ideals as I see them.

Define external redirect: RefactorLater