The doctrine of the mean (sometimes termed ‘doctrine of the golden mean’) is a principle formulated by Aristotle in the Nicomachean Ethics, according to which a virtue is found in a position that occupies a median location between two extremes associated with it, one erring by excess, and the other by defect.

Applying the doctrine of the mean to the notion of courage, Aristotle arrives at the following definition: courage stands in a middle position between the two corresponding extremes of recklessness and cowardice.

Ross, W.D. and Brown, L. (2009) Aristotle The Nicomachean Ethics. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Ambiguous images Arbitrary focus Bistable perception Complementarity relationship Conflict resolution Conflict resolution with matrices of concepts Conflict types relating to matrices of concepts Contrary relationship Courage Dialectical contextualism Dialectical monism Dialectical monism in Aztec philosophy Dialectical monism in Heraclitus Dichotomic analysis Dichotomic analysis applied to paradox resolution Dichotomous reasoning Disqualification of one pole Disqualification of the positive Doctrine of the mean Doomsday argument Dualities Dual poles Extreme opposition General cognitive distortions Instance of one-sidedness bias Liar paradox Matrix of concepts Maximization Mental filter Minimization Bistable cognition Omission of the neutral One-sidedness bias One-sided viewpoint Opposition relationship Principle of dialectical indifference Requalification into the other pole Reference class Reference class problem Reference class problem in philosophical paradoxes Reference class problem in the Doomsday argument Reference class problem in Hempel’s paradox Reference class problem in the surprise examination paradox Selective abstraction Sorites paradox Specific cognitive distortions Surprise examination paradox System of taxa Two-sided viewpoint Viewpoint of a duality Viewpoint of a pole