Pleasure is the highest good

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Epicurus is one of the major philosophers in the Hellenistic period, the three centuries following the death of Alexander the Great in B. Epicurus developed an unsparingly materialistic metaphysics, empiricist epistemology, and hedonistic ethics. Epicurus taught that the basic constituents of the world are atoms, uncuttable bits of matter, flying through empty space, and he tried to explain all natural phenomena in atomic terms.

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The word hedonism conjures up images of excess and debauchery. The original meaning of this word lies, however, in the deep philosophical deliberations of the ancient Greeks and Romans. It will be argued that Epicurean hedonism is preferable over the Millsean version, because Epicurean hedonism focuses on individual salvation, while Mill promotes the aggregated good of all, which does no justice to the individual.

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Hedonism is the philosophy that pleasure is the most important pursuit of mankind, and the only thing that is good for an individual. Hedonists, therefore, strive to maximize their total pleasure the net of any pleasure less any pain or suffering. They believe that pleasure is the only good in life, and pain is the only eviland our life's goal should be to maximize pleasure and minimize pain.

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It is often contrasted with the similarly inclusive painor suffering, of all our feeling bad. This suggests simple explanations both of why people pursue pleasure and why there are reasons to do so. That we may prefer and choose something for its pleasure suggests that there are facts about pleasure that make some such choices better than others.

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An Imprecise Theory. Good is the aim of all action. Some goods are subordinate to others.

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The good is the object which all pursue, and for the sake of which they always act", says Plato Republic, I, vi. His disciple Aristotle repeats the same idea in other words when he declares Ethics, I, i that the good is "that which all aim at". This definition is, as St.

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Timeline Index. Epicurus was an ancient Greek philosopher as well as the founder of the school of philosophy called Epicureanism. Only a few fragments and letters of Epicurus's written works remain.

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But what kind of pleasure? While our emotions and sympathies are sometimes pleasurable, this is by no means their essential feature; they may equally be painful or neutral. How then does the aesthetic of sympathy explain the pleasure that we take, and must take,….

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Hedonism is a school of thought that argues that the pursuit of pleasure and intrinsic goods are the primary or most important goals of human life. However upon finally gaining said pleasure, happiness may remain stationary. Ethical hedonism is the idea that all people have the right to do everything in their power to achieve the greatest amount of pleasure possible to them.

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For example, the end of the medical art is health, of shipbuilding the vessel, of strategy the victory and so on. Furthermore, as seen above, the concept of good can vary; the good in health is sustenance, in the vessel travel, and in victory honor. Yet, Aristotle is not looking for an in-exhaustive list of what the good could be, instead he is looking for the highest good out of all these goods.

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