Hedonism is a theory that denoted the Greek word, “Pleasure”. The theory of hedonism elaborates that an individual’s goal must be the attainment of pleasure through every action or conduct. In other words, the theory of hedonism can be explained by regarding it with the philosophy stating that everything that provides pleasure to an individual is considered to be good and everything tends to increase the intensity if pain shall be considered as wrong. Let us now discuss in brief regarding the history of hedonism and how the theory of Hedonism explains pleasure and happiness. The paper also includes an example of hedonism from the present and how it can be applied to pursuit of happiness in individual’s life.
Aristippus of Cyrene has been a student of Socrates who had coined the term hedonism for the first time and therefore he is regarded as the father of hedonism. Later on, the theory of hedonism was altered by Epicurus (341-270 B.C.).Epicurus added a qualitative value in the statement of the theory that pleasure of intellect and moral value should be greater than the pleasure of body. The statement was then criticized by Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832) in terms of prompting egoistic hedonism and stated that right or wrong should be determined in terms of most pleasure than mentioning pleasure of particular characteristic. At last John Stewart Mills further amended that pleasure must not only be taken right or wrong on the basis of quantity but also quality (Flocker, 2004).
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