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but you cannot be pleased quickly, nor yet more quickly than somebody else, as you can walk, grow, etc., more quickly than somebody else. It is possible to pass into a pleasurable state quickly or slowly, but not to function in that state—i.e. to feel pleasure—quickly. [5] And (b) in what sense can pleasure be a process of generation? We do not think that any chance thing can be generated from any other chance thing, but that a thing at its dissolution is resolved into that from which it is generated; and if pleasure is the generation of something, pain is the destruction of that thing. [6] Also (c) they say1 that pain is a deficiency of the natural state and pleasure is its replenishment. But these are bodily experiences. Now if pleasure is a replenishment of the natural state, the pleasure will be felt by the thing in which the replenishment takes place. Therefore it is the body that feels pleasure. But this does not seem to be the case. Therefore pleasure is not a process of replenishment, though while replenishment takes place, a feeling of pleasure may accompany it, just as a feeling of pain may accompany a surgical operation.2 The belief that pleasure is a replenishment seems to have arisen from the pains and pleasures connected with food: here the pleasure does arise from a replenishment, and is preceded by the pain of a want. [7] But this is not the case with all pleasures: the pleasures of knowledge, for example, have no antecedent pain; nor have certain of the pleasures of sense, namely those whose medium is the sense of smell, as well as many sounds and sights; and also memories and hopes. If these are processes of generation, generation of what? No lack of anything has occurred that may be replenished.

[8] In reply to those who bring forward the disreputable pleasures, one may (a) deny that these are really pleasant: for granted they are pleasant to ill-conditioned people, it cannot therefore be assumed that they are actually pleasant, except to them, any more than things healthy or sweet or bitter to invalids are really so, or any more than things that seem white to people with a disease of the eyes are really white. [9] Or (b) one may take the line that, though the pleasures themselves are desirable, they are not desirable when derived from those sources; just as wealth is desirable, but not if won by treachery, or health, but not at the cost of eating anything and everything. [10] Or (c) we may say that pleasures differ in specific quality; since (a) those derived from noble sources are not the same as those derived from base sources, and it is impossible to feel the pleasures of a just man without being just, or the pleasures of a musician without being musical, and so on. [11] And also ( β) the distinction between a friend and a flatterer seems to show that pleasure is not a good, or else that pleasures are specifically different; since a friend is thought to aim at doing good to his companion, a flatterer at giving pleasure; to be a flatterer is a reproach, whereas a friend is praised because in his intercourse he aims at other things.

1 Plat. Phileb. 31e-32b, Plat. Phileb. 42c.

2 i.e., we do not say a cut is a pain, but it is accompanied by pain.

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