Introduction to PhilosophyNotesThis is not a substitute for coming to class Richard Lee
Philosophy 2003 C 001Copyright © 1999, Richard Lee Spring 1999

Epicurus on Pleasure

"No pleasure is a bad thing in itself" (P 520b)

Not every pleasure is to be chosen. (P 519a)

"[T]he means which produce some pleasures bring with them disturbances many times greater than the pleasures." (P 520b)

"... it is then that we have need of pleasure, when we feel pain owing to the absence of pleasure; but when we do not feel pain, we no longer need pleasure." (P 518a)

"When, therefore, we maintain that pleasure is the end, we do not mean the pleasures of profligates, and those that consist in sensuality ..., but freedom from pain in the body and from trouble in the mind." (P 519a)

"For it is not continuous drinkings and revellings, nor the satisfaction of other lusts, nor the . . . luxuries of the wealthy table, which produce a pleasant life, but sober reasoning . . . and banishing mere opinions, to which are due the greatest disturbance of the spirit." (P 519ab)

Richard Lee,, last modified: 21 April 1999