If all existence ends at death isn't hedonism the only logical lifestyle?

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Marat phil
 
Reply Thu 22 Apr, 2010 08:25 pm
@mediadrug,
mediadrug;155309 wrote:
hedonism is a selfish way of life, even though your existence may end when you die and even if there is no afterlife, the life of others will continue, and the selfishness of hedonism may adversely affect those who are still around after you die, so with respect to the happiness and wellbeing of others, hedonism is not logically or morally sustainable
 
Philosophinatic
 
Reply Thu 22 Apr, 2010 09:21 pm
@richard mcnair,
richard_mcnair;140254 wrote:
Well in my own view I believe pleasure to be the temporary satisfaction of a desire. Pain would be having a desire and not being able to satisfy it - ie the Plato/Schopenhauer idea - pleasure and pain are just the two sides of the same coin. I wouldn't count things like beauty and love as pleasures in this sense. IMO the most profound goal is desirelessness - no pleasure, no pain... but that is just my own (religious) opinion. So i think hedonism is a bad thing because if you spend your life in pursuit of pleasure, you are more than likely to end up living your life in a lot of pain.



Keep in mind that pleasure is not always the same as happiness. As stressed by Aristotle and Plato alike, pleasure is something that is acceptable to strive for if the pleasure leads to happiness. For instance the pleasure achieved from illicit drugs may not be a proper form of pleasure because of the effects thereafter which revoke us from our happiness. If you do believe that life should be spent looking for "happiness" you should look to please yourself with pleasures that end with happiness such as; Friendship, learning, spiritual praise, etc.
 
Pyrrho
 
Reply Fri 23 Apr, 2010 10:22 am
@Philosophinatic,
Philosophinatic;155527 wrote:
Keep in mind that pleasure is not always the same as happiness. As stressed by Aristotle and Plato alike, pleasure is something that is acceptable to strive for if the pleasure leads to happiness. For instance the pleasure achieved from illicit drugs may not be a proper form of pleasure because of the effects thereafter which revoke us from our happiness. If you do believe that life should be spent looking for "happiness" you should look to please yourself with pleasures that end with happiness such as; Friendship, learning, spiritual praise, etc.


I don't think that the example of illicit drugs is going to work as a proof that happiness is more than pleasure. In the case of some drugs, the long term effects cause pain, and not liking that is still purely in the realm of hedonism. And as for learning and friendship, those bring pleasure, and were recommended by the hedonist Epicurus. With Epicurus, he recognized the fact that the immediate pleasure and pain are not the only considerations, but the long term pleasure and pain are also quite important for a hedonist to consider. So Epicurus recommended a lifestyle that is almost the opposite of what the English word "epicurean" means (there are historical reasons for this, as the Christians of the Dark Ages burned as many of his books as they could get their hands on, and misrepresented him, as they did not want people to be Epicureans, and wanted them to be Christians of the type of which they approved; they were so successful in misrepresenting Epicurus, that they succeeded in getting the word "epicurean" to mean what it does today).
 
Philosophinatic
 
Reply Sun 25 Apr, 2010 09:02 am
@Pyrrho,
Pyrrho;155696 wrote:
I don't think that the example of illicit drugs is going to work as a proof that happiness is more than pleasure. In the case of some drugs, the long term effects cause pain, and not liking that is still purely in the realm of hedonism. And as for learning and friendship, those bring pleasure, and were recommended by the hedonist Epicurus. With Epicurus, he recognized the fact that the immediate pleasure and pain are not the only considerations, but the long term pleasure and pain are also quite important for a hedonist to consider. So Epicurus recommended a lifestyle that is almost the opposite of what the English word "epicurean" means (there are historical reasons for this, as the Christians of the Dark Ages burned as many of his books as they could get their hands on, and misrepresented him, as they did not want people to be Epicureans, and wanted them to be Christians of the type of which they approved; they were so successful in misrepresenting Epicurus, that they succeeded in getting the word "epicurean" to mean what it does today).



So what exactly should it have meant according to Epicurus and what does it mean today?:listening:
 
Pyrrho
 
Reply Sun 25 Apr, 2010 10:51 am
@Philosophinatic,
Philosophinatic;156417 wrote:

So what exactly should it have meant according to Epicurus and what does it mean today?:listening:


Normally, a word like "epicurean" would mean a follower of Epicurus. However, if you took the trouble to look it up in an ordinary dictionary, you would find that it means:

Quote:

epicurean   
-adjective


  1. fond of or adapted to luxury or indulgence in sensual pleasures; having luxurious tastes or habits, esp. in eating and drinking.

  2. fit for an epicure: epicurean delicacies.

  3. (initial capital letter) of, pertaining to, or characteristic of Epicurus or Epicureanism.
    -noun

  4. an epicure.

  5. (initial capital letter) a disciple of Epicurus.


Epicurean | Define Epicurean at Dictionary.com

Quote:
epicure 
-noun


  1. a person who cultivates a refined taste, esp. in food and wine; connoisseur.

  2. Archaic. a person dedicated to sensual enjoyment.


Epicure | Define Epicure at Dictionary.com


Epicurus recommended that one not develop a taste for exotic things and not indulge in what an epicure indulges in, as such things often lead to future pain and privation, as such things are dependent upon being able to afford them, which one may not in the future, and also many indulgences cannot be tolerated in a human body for long, so they, too, will be missed in the future if one has developed a taste for such things. Epicurus recommended enjoying simple and healthful things, as those are quite capable of giving pleasure, and help with future pleasure as well. With Epicurus, the long term is key. This is why he would, were he alive today, recommend going to a good dentist, not because a visit to the dentist was good in itself, but because it is good in its consequences. (By "good", Epicurus means something that brings pleasure and/or avoids pain.) Epicurus would recommend not overindulging in alcohol, because vomiting all night is not good (it is quite unpleasant), and also because the long term health effects will bring pain. In other words, the lifestyle of a person who is epicurean in definition 1 is the opposite of the lifestyle of a person who fits definition 3.
 
gavin25
 
Reply Fri 21 May, 2010 10:05 pm
@richard mcnair,
richard_mcnair;140229 wrote:
Now on the reverse side of this I would agree with the people who say that having lots of beliefs about the afterlife can also be tremendously unhealthy to say the least, but if we are just randomly evolved biological beings whose existence ends at death, and everything about everything can be explained by the natural sciences, then is there anyway to found convincing, solid, unimpeachable arguments for any other lifestyle other than hedonism?


You imply that this hedonistic lifestyle leads to a lack of morals. Contrary to this, it is extremely difficult to live a hedonistic life immorally due to our conscience.
 
davec
 
Reply Tue 25 May, 2010 11:34 am
@richard mcnair,
Perhaps satisfaction should be the word rather than pleasure. Satisfaction in a job well done, satisfaction with one's family - that sort of thing.

For example, one can obtain great satisfaction from being respected by one's peers. To obtain respect one might do good deads (good in the eyes of one's peers). To be hedonistic might diminish one in their eyes.
 
exile
 
Reply Tue 25 May, 2010 01:44 pm
@richard mcnair,
Well, I don't believe in an afterlife. I do however care about posterity, and about other people. Sometimes!

If I believed in an afterlife I might be rather more concerned about my fate in such an afterlife - which would affect my behaviour - but would it be for the better? For example I might believe my place in paradise would bve secured by killing people of another religion.
 
 

 
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