This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
therefore its opposite must be intrinsically an object of desire to all. Again, he argued that that thing is most desirable which we choose not as a means to or for the sake of something else; but such admittedly is pleasure: we never ask a man for what purpose he indulges in pleasure—we assume it to be desirable in itself. He also said that the addition of pleasure to any good—for instance, just or temperate conduct—makes that good more desirable; but only the good can enhance the good.  Now as for the last argument, it seems only to prove that pleasure is a good, and not that it is in any way better than any other good; for every good is more desirable when combined with some other good than in isolation. In fact, a similar argument is employed by Plato1 to refute the view that pleasure is the Good: the life of pleasure, he urges, is more desirable in combination with intelligence than without it; but if pleasure combined with something else is better than pleasure alone, it is not the Good, for the Good is not rendered more desirable by the addition of anything to it. And it is clear that nothing else either will be the Good if it becomes more desirable when combined with something good in itself.  What thing is there then of this nature,2 which is attainable by us? for it is something of this nature that we are in search of. Those3 on the other hand who deny that that which all creatures seek to obtain is good, are surely talking nonsense.