EPICUREANISM AND HEDONISM
An early example of alternatives to the strict ascetic lifestyle is
represented by Epicurus (341 - 270 BC).
Epicurus advised a lifestyle of moderate pleasures in which pain,
importantly, was to be avoided.
Some consider his viewpoint to be contradictory, since indulgence
without another principle of virtue might lead to suffering.
In more recent history, the availability of sugar, caffeine, and
other drugs, as well as increase in the availability of luxuries has
made abstention from pleasure seem more and more pointless,
and this has led to a rise in the popularity of Hedonistic beliefs.
Although Epicurus was closer to the moderate beliefs of Aristotle,
hedonists such as Bentham argued that pleasure was the means
to oppose pain, and thus, it was pointless to avoid extreme
In my own theories I argue that pleasure is simply different from
pain: pleasure is karma from good information, and pain is simply
a symptom of total dysfunctionality. In this way, the relation is
indirect enough not to justify a move away from moderate
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