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(for instance, the pleasure of contemplation), being experienced without any deficiency from the normal having occurred. That restorative pleasures are only accidentally pleasant is indicated by the fact that we do not enjoy the same things while the natural state is being replenished as we do after it has been restored to the normal; in the normal state we enjoy things that are absolutely pleasant, but during the process of replenishment we enjoy even their opposites; for instance, sour and bitter things, none of which are naturally or absolutely pleasant, so that the pleasures we get from them are not naturally or absolutely pleasant either, since there is the same distinction between various pleasures as there is between the pleasant things from which they arise. [3]

Again (iii.) , it does not follow, as some argue, that as the end is better than the process towards it, so there must be something better than pleasure. For pleasures are not really processes, nor are they all incidental to a process: they are activities, and therefore an end; nor do they result from the process of acquiring our faculties, but from their exercise; nor have they all of them some end other than themselves: this is only true of the pleasures of progress towards the perfection of our nature. Hence it is not correct to define pleasure as a ‘conscious process’ ; the term should rather be ‘activity of our natural state,’ and for ‘conscious’ we must substitute ‘unimpeded.’ Some thinkers hold that pleasure is a process on the ground that it is good in the fullest sense, because in their view an activity is a process; but really an activity is different from a process. [4]

To argue (2) (b) that pleasures are bad because some pleasant things are detrimental to health is the same as to argue that health is bad because some healthy things are bad for the pocket. Both pleasant things and healthy things can be bad in a relative sense, but that does not make them really bad; even contemplation may on occasion be injurious to health. [5]

(1) (d) Neither prudence nor any other quality is hampered by its own pleasure, but only by alien pleasures1; the pleasures of contemplation and study will enable us to contemplate and study better. [6]

(1) (e) That there should be no art devoted to the production of any form of pleasure is only natural; an art never produces an activity, but the capacity for an activity. Though in point of fact the arts of perfumery and cookery are generally considered to be arts of pleasure. [7]

The arguments (1) (b) that the temperate man avoids pleasure, and (1) (c) that the prudent man pursues freedom from pain, and (1) (f) that animals and children pursue pleasure, are all met by the same reply. It has been explained2 how some pleasures are absolutely good, and how not all pleasures are good.3 Now it is those pleasures which are not absolutely good that both animals and children pursue, and it is freedom from pain arising from the want of those pleasures that the prudent man pursues4: that is, the pleasures that involve desire and pain, namely the bodily pleasures (for these are of that nature) , or their excessive forms, in regard to which Profligacy is displayed. That is why the temperate man avoids excessive bodily pleasures: for even the temperate man has pleasures.

1 i.e., the pleasures arising from the exercise of other qualities.

2 Cf. 4.5.

3 i.e., not good absolutely or in themselves, though good (in moderation) as means to life: the ‘necessary’ and ‘neutral’ pleasures of 4.2,5.

4 i.e., the prudent man both satisfies his natural desire for the bodily pleasures in moderation, and trains himself not to mind their absence; but does both not for the sake of pleasure, but to avoid the disturbance of pain.

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