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[7] (iii.) Moreover, it is clear that if pleasure is not good and activity is not pleasure,1 the life of the happy man will not necessarily be pleasant. For why should he need pleasure if it is not good? On the contrary, his life may even be painful; for if pleasure is neither good nor evil, no more is pain either, so why should he avoid it? And if the good man's activities are not pleasanter than those of others, his life will not be pleasanter either.14.

On the subject of the bodily pleasures, we must examine the view of those who say that though it is true that some pleasures, which they call the noble pleasures, are highly desirable, yet bodily pleasures and those which are the objects of the profligate are not desirable. [2] If so, why are the pains opposed to them evil? since the opposite of evil is good. Perhaps the true view is, that the necessary pleasures are good in the sense that what is not evil is good; or that they are good up to a point: for though you cannot have excessive pleasure from states and movements which cannot themselves be in excess of what is good, you can have excessive pleasure from those which themselves admit of excess. Now you can have an excess of the bodily goods; and it is pursuing this excess that makes a bad man, not pursuing the necessary pleasures, for everybody enjoys savory food, wine, and sexual pleasure in some degree, though not everybody to the right degree. With pain it is the other way about2: one avoids not merely excessive pain, but all pain;

1 The mss. give ‘if pleasure and activity are not good.’

2 Whereas bodily pleasure is good in moderation and bad only in excess, all pain is bad; but this does not mean that the absence of excessive pleasure is bad, for it is not painful to the good man.

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