Everyone seeks happiness. Every person has moments of incredible joy, fun and enthusiasm, which he would never forget. Happiness is an inner state of peace, rise and satisfaction. Everyone has its own happiness. What brings pleasure for one leaves untouched the other person. There are many people in the world, and there are many ways to be happy. The pursuit of happiness is the complicated and complex issue, which has always been a subject of philosophers’ researches.
Hedonism is a philosophical direction of the ethics that considers the joy of physical pleasure as the highest good and happiness in life. The concept of hedonism is used to describe a material-oriented, self-serving approach to life. During the peak of absolutism, hedonism was one of the defining life principles of the so-called gallant age in aristocrats’ psychology of the eighteenth century in Europe, and especially in France during the reign of Louis 15. The word ‘hedonism’ comes from the ancient Greek for ‘pleasure’ (Moore, 2013). In a systematic manner, as the type of the ethical teaching, hedonism was first developed in the teachings of the Greek philosopher Aristippus (435-355).
Hedonism states that path to happiness lies in achieving maximum pleasure while avoiding pain. The meaning of life means physical pleasure. According to Hedonistic Theories (n.d.), “moral goodness is an instrumental good—it is not necessarily an intrinsic good”.
Hedonism is criticized for identifying happiness with pleasure, and denying of the fact that people can aspire to other goals (artistic excellence, freedom, faith), remaining indifferent to the pleasures. Pleasure is an extremely individual, so society has no common denominator of pleasure or pain. Hedonism leaves no space for a victim, selflessness or debt. The duty gives way to desire, morality goes into the feasibility and desire for facilities.
Modern society has faced hedonism. The cult of hedonism and sensual pleasures are characteristic features of modern mass culture. Modern means of mass communication have played a crucial role in fact that hedonism has become a leading orientation of youth.
The result of hedonism effects on society was the emergence of a new type of a man with increased attention to himself and his body, taking care of his own welfare. The identity of such a man becomes deformed. A spiritual crisis, the loss of a sense of citizenship, individualism, egotism and indifference to the common good follow this change. The hedonistic human aspirations turn into the emptiness.
Therefore, happiness does not mean seeking for pleasure. Happiness is forever, and fun is for a while. Pleasure depends on things; happiness does not depend on something. Happiness cannot be achieved through pleasure.
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