Satisfaction, Delight, Pleasant Feelings, Sensuality, Enjoyment, Happiness,
Joy, Gladness, Wanting, Avoiding Pain, Peace of Mind, Desires, Libertinage
Happy, Thrilling, Ecstatic, Achievement, Painless, Decadence, Self-Interest

Hedonism, Epicureanism, Egoism, Utilitarianism 


Quotations, Sayings, Aphorisms, Quips, Quotes, Wisdom, Poetry

Compiled by Michael P. Garofalo
Green Way Research, Red Bluff, California


Virtue Ethics     How to Live a Good Life     Hedonism     Epicureanism     Main Index   

Happiness     Tranquility     Equanimity     Kindness     Pleasures     Moderation              

Touching     Seeing     Hearing     Smelling    Tasting    Senses     Hands     Somaesthetics

Gardening     Taijiquan     Qigong     Hatha Yoga     Walking    

Cloud Hands Blog     Facebook   



Cloud Hands Blog




"The chief part of a person's happiness consists of pleasure."
-  Thomas More,
Utopia, 1516


"Man, Nietzsche contended, is a being that has leapt beyond the "bestial bounds of the mating season" and seeks pleasure not just at fixed intervals but perpetually.  Since, however, there are fewer sources of pleasure than his perpetual desire for pleasure demands, nature has forced man on the "path of pleasure contrivance."  Man, the creature of consciousness whose horizons extend to the past and the future, rarely attains complete fulfillment within the present, and for this reason experiences something most likely unknown to any animal, namely boredom.  This strange creature seeks a stimulus to release him from boredom.  If no such stimulus is readily available, it simply needs to be created.  Man becomes the animal that plays.  Play is an invention that engages the emotions; it is the art of stimulating the emotions.  Music is a prime example.  Thus, the anthropological and physiological formula for the secret of art: "The flight from boredom is the mother of all art." "
-  Rudiger Safranski, Nietzsche: A Philosophical Biography, p. 23


“You must learn some of my philosophy.  Think only of the past as its remembrance gives you pleasure.” 
-  Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice 


"Our brightest blazes of gladness are commonly kindled by unexpected sparks."
-  Samuel Johnson, The Idler; Poems


“Too much of a good thing can be wonderful!” 
-  Mae West


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"Take care of the luxuries and the necessities will take care of themselves."
-  Dorothy Parker


"How easy is it for one benevolent being to diffuse pleasure around him, and how truly is a kind heart a fountain of gladness, making everything in its vicinity to freshen into smiles."
-  Washington Irving


"If it does not come at the last to gladness, then to hell with it."
-  Douglas Wilson, Angels in the Architecture


Virtues and a Good Life


“I adore simple pleasures. They are the last refuge of the complex.” 
-  Oscar Wilde


"You say, 'If I had a little more, I should be very satisfied.'  You make a mistake. If you are not content with what you have, you would not be satisfied if it were doubled."
-  Charles Haddon Spurgeon


"He who is not satisfied with a little, is satisfied with nothing."
-  Epicurus


"It isn't the great big pleasures that count the most; it is making a great deal out of the little ones."
-  Jean Webster


"Illusion is the first of all pleasures."
-  Voltaire


"I don't believe in guilty pleasures.  If you enjoy something, there is nothing guilty about it."
-  Busy Phillips


"Reading well is one of the great pleasures that solitude can afford you."
-  Harold Bloom


"A great pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do."
-  Walter Bagehot


"The noblest pleasure is the joy of understanding."
-  Leonardo Da Vinci


"There is no pleasure in having nothing to do; the fun is having lots to do and not doing it."
-  Andrew Jackson


"Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work."
-  Aristotle


"Pleasure and pain, like light and darkness, succeed one another."
-  Laurence Sterne


"The rule of my life is to make business a pleasure, and pleasure my business.
-  Aaron Burr


"I don't believe in guilty pleasures, if you fucking like something, like it."
-  Dave Grohl


"Pleasure is the physical manifestation of joy."
-  Cherie Carter-Scott


"One must be prepared to fight for one's simple pleasures and to defend them against elegance
 and erudition and all manner of glamorous enticements."
-  Amor Towles


"Take your pleasures seriously."
-  Charles Eames

"As far as I am concerned, I prefer silent vice to ostentatious virtue."
-  Albert Einstein


"People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing.”"
-  Dale Carnegie


"Life is more fun if you play games." 
-  Roald Dahl, My Uncle Oswald


“So she thoroughly taught him that one cannot take pleasure without giving pleasure, and that every gesture, every caress, every touch, every glance, every last bit of the body has its secret, which brings happiness to the person who knows how to wake it. She taught him that after a celebration of love the lovers should not part without admiring each other, without being conquered or having conquered, so that neither is bleak or glutted or has the bad feeling of being used or misused.” 
-  Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha 


Epicurean Philosophy: Bibliography, Resources, Quotations, Information


“Melancholy is the happiness of being sad.” 
-  Victor Hugo


"Past pleasures are of as little comfort to a man as the money in his neighbor's pocket."
-  Abraham Miller, Unmoral Maxims


"Little is needed to make a wise man happy, but nothing can content a fool.  That is why nearly all men are miserable."
-  La Rochefoucauld


"That pleasure which is at once the most pure, the most elevating and the most intense, is derived, I maintain, from the contemplation of the beautiful."
-  Edgar Allan Poe


"All men want, not something to do with, but something to do, or rather something to be."
-  Henry David Thoreau, Walden


"You can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you might find, you get what you need."
-  Mick Jagger


"When I eat with my friends, it is a moment of real pleasure, when I really enjoy my life."
-  Monica Bellucci


"Close friends contribute to our personal growth. They also contribute to our personal pleasure, making the music sound sweeter, the wine taste richer, the laughter ring louder because they are there."
-  Judith Viorst


"I'm an atheist, and I don't have any belief in an afterlife.  You could say that I'm resigned to the fact that this wonderful life that we get here is it.  And having hit 60, it's a good time to get resigned to these things and not be too nervous or upset - and enjoy what great times one can have." 
-  David Gilmour


"Enjoy life, even in the most chaotic, hectic moments.  Take time to breathe.  Take time to consider what is important versus what is rubbish.  Those are the times where slowing down is healthiest.  Those are the times where it really counts.  And, if you come across an impossible situation, crying will not help.  Open your mouth, but instead of sobs and wails, give out a little chuckle.  It’ll make all the difference in your attitude and therefore, in your situation." 
-  Leigh Hershkovich


"Pleasure cannot be shared; like pain, it can only be experienced or inflicted, and when we give pleasure to our lovers or bestow charity upon the needy, we do so, not to gratify the object of our benevolence, but only ourselves. For the truth is that we are kind for the same reason as we are cruel, in order that we may enhance the sense of our own power."
-  Aldos Huxley, After Many a Summer Dies the Swan


The Five Senses and Pleasure


"They that seldom take pleasure, seldom give pleasure."
-  Fulke Greville, Maxims


"Not necessity, not desire - no, the love of power is the demon of men.  Let them have everything - health, food, a place to live, entertainment - they are and remain unhappy and low-spirited: for the demon waits and waits and will be satisfied."
-  Friedrich Nietzsche


"All, all is theft, all is unceasing and rigorous competition in nature; the desire to make off with the substance of others is the foremost - the most legitimate - passion nature has bred into us and, without doubt, the most agreeable one."
-  Marquis de Sade


"I'm a naked mind, in a covered body." 
-  Sara Keddar


"Pleasure!  The end of suffering or the beginning of an enjoyment?"
-  M.F. Moonzajer, Love, Hatred, and Madness 


"In the end, it doesn't matter how many breaths you take, but how many moments took your breath away."
-  Shing Xiong


"We must risk delight. We can do without pleasure, but not delight. Not enjoyment. We must have the stubbornness to accept our gladness in the ruthless furnace of this world. To make injustice the only measure of our attention is to praise the Devil.” 
-  Jack Gilbert, Refusing Heaven


"We recognize pleasure as the first good innate in us, and from pleasure we begin every act of choice and avoidance, and to pleasure we return again, using the feeling as the standard by which we judge every good."
-  Epicurus, Letter to Menoeceus


“Her pleasure in the walk must arise from the exercise and the day, from the view of the last smiles of the year upon the tawny leaves and withered hedges, and from repeating to herself some few of the thousand poetical descriptions extant of autumn--that season of peculiar and inexhaustible influence on the mind of taste and tenderness--that season which has drawn from every poet worthy of being read some attempt at description, or some lines of feeling.” 
-  Jane Austen, Persuasion


“To acquire the habit of reading is to construct for yourself a refuge from almost all the miseries of life.” 
-  W. Somerset Maugham, Books and You


"Stranger, here you do well to tarry; here our highest good is pleasure."  
-  On a sign at the entrance to the Garden of Epicurus in Athens. 


"Perhaps all pleasure is only relief."
-  William Burroughs


"When happiness was a matter of pleasure, and pleasure a matter of taste, one could be happy simply by rolling in filth."
-  Darrin M. McMahon, Happiness: A History


"The more often he feels without acting, the less he will be able ever to act, and, in the long run, the less he will be able to feel."
-  C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters


"The best thing is to possess pleasures without being their slave; not to be devoid of pleasures."
-  Aristippus, Cyrenaics


"A new hedonism - that is what our century wants."
-  Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray


"Pleasure is the sun of the morning, the cloud of the meridian, and the storm of the evening."
-  William Scott Downey, Proverbs


Hedonism:  Bibliography, Links, Quotations, Resources, Notes


"The choicest pleasures of life lie within the ring of moderation."
-  Martin Tupper, Proverbial Philosophy


"It is not the young man who should be considered fortunate but the old man who as lived well, because the young man in his prime wanders much by chance, vacillating in his beliefs, while the old man has docked in the harbour, have safeguarded his true happiness."
-  Epicurus 


"Life is full of suffering, and so its chief purpose is pleasure. There is no god, and no afterlife; men are the helpless puppets of the blind natural forces that made them, and that gave them their unchosen ancestry and their inalienable character. The wise man will accept this fate without complaint, but will not be fooled by all the nonsense of Confucius and Mo Ti about inherent virtue, universal love, and a good name: morality is a deception practiced upon the simple by the clever; universal love is the delusion of children who do not know the universal enmity that forms the law of life; and a good name is a posthumous bauble which the fools who paid so dearly for it cannot enjoy."
Yang Zhu - Ancient History Encyclopedia






"I don’t have a philosophy: I have senses...
If I talk about Nature, it’s not because I know what it is,
But because I love it, and that’s why I love it,
Because when you love you never know what you love,
Or why you love, or what love is.
Loving is eternal innocence,
And the only innocence is not thinking."
-  Alberto Caeiro, The Keeper of Sheep


"Of anything is sacred, the human body is sacred."
-  Walt Whitman


"If I ever go looking for my heart's desire again, I won't look any further than my own back yard. Because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with."
-  L. Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz


"For just one second, look at your life and see how perfect it is.  Stop looking for the next secret door that is going to lead you to your real life.  Stop waiting.  This is it: there's nothing else.  It's here, and you'd better decide to enjoy it or you're going to be miserable wherever you go, for the rest of your life, forever."
-  Lev Grossman, The Magicians


Somaesthetics:  Body-Mind Practices and Theories


"Let thy desire flourish,
In order to let thy heart forget the beatifications for thee.
Follow thy desire, as long as thou shalt live.
Put myrrh upon thy head and clothing of fine linen upon thee,
Being anointed with genuine marvels of the gods' property.
Set an increase to thy good things;
Let not thy heart flag.
Follow thy desire and thy good.
Fulfill thy needs upon earth, after the command of thy heart,
Until there come for thee that day of mourning."
-  Egyptian Paraoh Intef, 11th Dynasty, circa 2150 BCE


"I decided that life rationally considered seemed pointless and futile, but it is still interesting in a variety of ways, including the study of science. So why not carry on, following the path of scientific hedonism?  Besides, I did not have the courage for the more rational procedure of suicide."
-  Robert S. Mulliken, Life of a Scientist


"Burning desire to be or do something gives us staying power - a reason to get up every morning or to pick ourselves up and start in again after a disappointment."
-  Marsha Sinetar


"Love is something far more than desire for sexual intercourse; it is the principal means of escape from the loneliness which afflicts most men and women throughout the greater part of their lives."
-  Bertrand Russell


"Which is better off, a lizard basking in the sun or a philosopher?"
-  Ursula K. Le Guin, Changing Planes


"It is a fact of human nature that we derive pleasure from watching others engage in pleasurable acts. This explains the popularity of two enterprises: pornography and cafés."
-  Eric Weiner, The Geography of Bliss


"The end is the beginning of all things,
Suppressed and hidden,
Awaiting to be released through the rhythm
Of pain and pleasure."
-  Jiddu Krishnamurti


"We cannot be more sensitive to pleasure without being more sensitive to pain."
-  Alan Watts


"Enjoy what you have.  Forget what you haven't.” 
-  Laura Maude Picard


"Lets stop worrying about future and lets start enjoying the present."
-  Nadair Desmar


"If you don't get everything you want, think of the things you don't get that you don't want."
-  Oscar Wilde


"Whosoever desires constant success must change his conduct with the times."
-  Niccolò Machiavelli


"Of all the seasons, winter is the most conducive to the great art of dormancy. This art requires an appreciation of semi-consciousness: the beautiful and necessary prelude to sleep - a special pleasure in itself that is all too often neglected, under-valued or looked down upon."
-  Michael Leunig


"Pleasure is the business of the young, business the pleasure of the old."
-  Fulke Greville, Maxims


“He that loves pleasure must for pleasure fall.” 
-  Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus


“And yet it takes only the smallest pleasure or pain to teach us time’s malleability.” 
-  Julian Barnes, The Sense of an Ending


“I finally figured out the only reason to be alive is to enjoy it.” 
-  Rita Mae Brown


“Every moment has its pleasures and its hope.” 
-  Jane Austen, Mansfield Park


"Getting wasted is never a waste of time." 
-  Jonathan Heatt



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"The overwhelming noise we live with has made a fundamental pleasure like sex somehow less exciting, less satisfying, than it was for our libidinous forefathers and mothers. It seems to me that for sex and other pleasures to be enjoyed to the fullest, a certain contemplative quality to life must be present. If you doubt this imagine yourself for a moment having sex. Now imagine you wished to increase the pleasure you were feeling, feel it more intensely. What might you do? Well one of the things you'd probably do is close your eyes. What this does of course is shut out other stimuli. The visual quiet increases your sensual enjoyment and you concentrate more fully on the pleasure. The same is true for the removal of auditory noise as well. Well my feeling is that the average person has a much harder time doing this today than they would have decades ago. Today you close your eyes and shut off Television but the noise persists. It's part of our fabric now, our biology, and all other pleasures including sex are diminished as a result. We don't notice this derogation by the way and sex still feels great, don't get me wrong, but I think the difference is there nonetheless. Like the difference between seeing breasts when you're thirty as opposed to when you were thirteen.”"
-  Sergio De La Pava, A Naked Singularity


"There are people who cannot enjoy a pleasure unless they have first persuaded themselves that it is a duty. They are perhaps the most confirmed hedonists of all, for they are not content to enjoy without the added delight of conscious rectitude."
-  John W. MacKail, On Giving Advice


The Calculus of Felicity

Intensity:  How powerful is the pleasure?
Duration:  How long lasting is the pleasure?
Certainty:  How guaranteed is the pleasure?
Proximity:  How close is the pleasure?
Fecundity:  Will this pleasurable activity generate additional pleasures?
Purity: How pain-free is this particular pleasure?
Extent:  How many other persons will experience this pleasure?

Jeremy Bentham, 1748-1832 
   We might add:  Financial: What is the cost of the objects that provide the pleasure?  Environmental:  What are the
   consequences to our environment if we indulge in this pleasure? 


"There is no such thing as pure pleasure; some anxiety always goes with it."
-  Ovid, Metamorphoses


"I possess.  I am not possessed."
-  Aristippus of Cyrene


"Desire is a subject upon which ... true views can only be arrived at by an almost complete reversal of the ordinary unreflecting opinion."
-  Bertrand Russell  


"Desire, burning desire, is basic to achieving anything beyond the ordinary."
-  Joseph B. Wirthlin


"Men freely believe that which they desire."
-  Julius Caesar


"Nature has placed mankind under the governance of two sovereign masters, pain and pleasure. It is for them alone to point out what we ought to do, as well as to determine what we shall do. On the one hand the standard of right and wrong, on the other the chain of causes and effects, are fastened to their throne. They govern us in all we do, in all we say, in all we think ..."
-  Jeremy Bentham, The Principals of Morals and Legislation


How to Live a Good Life: Advice from Wise Persons


"Philosophical hedonists tend to focus on hedonistic theories of value, and especially of well-being (the good life for the one living it). As a theory of value, hedonism states that all and only pleasure is intrinsically valuable and all and only pain is intrinsically not valuable. Hedonists usually define pleasure and pain broadly, such that both physical and mental phenomena are included. Thus, a gentle massage and recalling a fond memory are both considered to cause pleasure and stubbing a toe and hearing about the death of a loved one are both considered to cause pain. With pleasure and pain so defined, hedonism as a theory about what is valuable for us is intuitively appealing. Indeed, its appeal is evidenced by the fact that nearly all historical and contemporary treatments of well-being allocate at least some space for discussion of hedonism."
Hedonism:  Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy 


"The highway of pleasure is crossed by many toll-gates."
-  Lewis F. Korns, Thoughts


"The joy from eating does not come from the exclusivity of the food, but instead from the sensitivity that we eat it with."
-  Nino Gruettke, Both of You: Behavior. Opinion. Thinking. Happiness


"Misery loves company, but not enough to enjoy it."
-  Marty Rubin 


"Pleasure is Nature’s test, her sign of approval. When man is happy, he is in harmony with himself and his environment."
-  Oscar Wilde, The Soul of Man Under Socialism


"We think too much and feel too little."
-  Charlie Chaplin


"Leave off asking what tomorrow will bring, and whatever days fortune will give, count them as profit.” 
-  Horace, The Odes of Horace


“If you look accurately into your life , it is full of fun and enjoyment.” 
-  M.F. Moonzajer


"Those who eat most, and who take the most exercise, are not in better health than they who eat just as much as is good for them; and in the same way it is not those who know a great many things, but they who know what is useful who are valuable men." 
-  Aristippus, Cyrenaics

"Pleasure's a Moth, that sleeps by day
And dance by false glare at night;
But Joy's a Butterfly, that loves
To spread its wings in Nature's light."
-  William Henry Davies, Joy and Pleasure


"Life, death, preservation, loss, failure, success, poverty, riches, worthiness, unworthiness, slander, fame, hunger, thirst, cold, heat─ these are the alterations of the world, the workings of fate.  Day and night they change place before us and wisdom cannot spy out their source.  Therefore, they should not be enough to destroy your harmony; they should not be allowed to enter the storehouse of the spirit.  If you can harmonize and delight in them, master them and never be a a loss for joy, if you can do this day and night without break and make it be spring with everything, mingling with all and creating the moment within your own mind─ this is what I call being whole in power."
-  Zhuangzi, Burton Watson translation, p. 69.; Zhuangzi Section 5, circa 300 BCE. 


Equanimity, Inner Peace, Ataraxia, Tranquility:  Quotations, Sayings, Poems, Information


"Men may scoff, and men may pray, but they pay every pleasure with a pain."
-  William Henley


"You are currently experiencing desire; otherwise, you wouldn't be reading these words.  Even if you are reading them at the behest of someone else, you are motivated by your desire to please that person.  And if you stop reading, you will do so no because you have stopped desiring but because your desires have changed."
-  Willam B. Irvine, On Desire


"Every nerve that can thrill with pleasure, can also agonize with pain."
-  Horace Mann, A Few Thoughts for a Young Man


"The secret of success is learning how to use pain and pleasure instead of having pain and pleasure use you. If you do that, you're in control of your life. If you don't, life controls you."
-  Tony Robbins


"The noblest pleasure is the joy of understanding."
-  Leonardo da Vinci


"One bulb at a time. There was no other way to do it. No shortcuts--simply loving the slow process of planting. Loving the work as it unfolded. Loving an achievement that grew slowly and bloomed for only three weeks each year."
-  Jaroldeen Asplund Edwards, The Daffodill Principle


"There's a capacity for appetite... that a whole heaven and earth of cake can't satisfy."
-  John Steinbeck


"Man's sole duty is to produce as much pleasure as possible."
-  Susan Hubbard


"Pleasure is labor too, and tires as much."
-  William Cowper, Hope


"The difficulty we have in accepting responsibility for our behavior lies in the desire to avoid the pain of the consequences of that behavior."
-  M. Scott Peck


"Samuel Johnson called it the vanity of human wishes, and Buddhists talk about the endless cycle of desire.  Social psychologists say we get trapped on a hedonic treadmill. What they all mean is that we wish, plan and work for things that we think will make us happy, but when we finally get them, we aren't nearly as happy as we thought we'd be."
-  Alison Gopnik


"There is no pleasure in having nothing to do; the fun is having lots to do and not doing it."
-  Andrew Jackson


"Test, try, experiment - within reason.
Manage your pleasures and desires.
Be open to thinking and feeling in new ways.
Sometimes ignore what other people tell you to do or not to do.
Old values are not necessarily better values.
What is "bad" in one generation may be "good" in later times.
Enjoy the pleasure of eating apples.
When someone tells you not to ask, sometimes ask and ask again.
With only one life to live - be bolder.
Don't resist the temptation to improve, to change, to grow.
Like water, enjoy going downhill in new directions.
Embrace intellectual pleasures.
Be suspicious of people who talk too much about guilt and punishment.
Some failures are inevitable, just get up and move on. 
Thinking and doing are often more advantageous than believing. 
Many people associate sexual pleasure with 'sinfulness': nonsense.
Succumb to temptations to laugh more often. 
If you can't take advantage of temptations then you are not free. 
Remember what works for you. 
- Mike Garofalo, On Not Resisting Temptations


"Pleasure is the Divine seasoning in the diet of life."
-  Lewis F. Korns, Thoughts


"We are prone to seek immediate pleasure or good, however small, rather than remote pleasure or good, however vast."
-  Horace Mann, Thoughts


"Enjoyment is always greatest when you have enough contrast to measure it by."
-  M. Wylie Blanchet, The Curve of Time


"The sun rises, the sun falls, the wind blows and the birds sing no matter where you are.  These are experiences that unite us all... something we can all enjoy together."
-  Melanie Charlene


"If man is to be liberated to enjoy more leisure, he must also be prepared to enjoy this leisure fully and creatively." 
-  Eleanor Roosevelt, This is My Story


"I am fascinated at how much time we spend doing things that we don’t enjoy."   
-  Daniel Willey 


"Once again discovered: Do what you do because you enjoy.  If expect others to give credit or honor your work, you are due for disappointment."
-  Phillip Gary Smith, Harmonizing 


"I have accumulated a wealth of knowledge in innumerable spheres and enjoyed it as an always ready instrument for exercising the mind and penetrating further and further.  Best of all, mine has been a life of loving and being loved.  What a tragedy that all this will disappear with the used-up body!"
-  Richard Goldschmidt


"There is not a little generalship and stratagem required in the managing and marshalling of our pleasures, so that each shall not mutually encroach to the destruction of all. For pleasures are very voracious, too apt to worry one another, and each, like Aaron's serpent, is prone to swallow up the rest. Thus drinking will soon destroy the power, gaming the means, and sensuality the taste, for other pleasures less seductive, but far more salubrious, and permanent as they are pure."
-  Charles Caleb Colton, Lacon


"In everything, satiety closely follows the greatest pleasures."
-  Cicero


"The poor have very few hours in which to enjoy themselves; they must take their pleasure raw; they haven't the time to cook it."
-  William Butler Yeats, Where There is Nothing


Hedonism:  Bibliography, Links, Quotations, Resources, Notes


"But pleasures are like poppies spread,
You seize the flower, its bloom is shed;
Or, like the snow falls in the river,
The moment white, then melts for ever."
-  Robert Bursn, Tam O'Shanter


"Pleasure is the flower that passes; remembrance, the lasting perfume."
-  Jean de Boufflers


“I set out to discover the why of it, and to transform my pleasure into knowledge.” 
-  Charles Baudelaire


"If it be a point of humanity for man to bring health and comfort to man, and especially to mitigate and assuage the grief of others, and by taking from them the sorrow and heaviness of life to restore them to joy, that is to say, to pleasure, why may it not then be said that nature does provoke every man to do the same to himself?"
-  Thomas More


"Pleasure vociferates more than Wisdom." 
-  John Stack IV


"I'm not in search of sanctity, sacredness, purity; these things are found after this life, not in this life; but in this life I search to be completely human: to feel, to give, to take, to laugh, to get lost, to be found, to dance, to love and to lust, to be so human."
-  C. JoyBell C.






"The art of life lies in taking pleasures as they pass, and the keenest pleasures are not intellectual, nor are they always moral."
-  Aristippus, Cyrenaics


The Five Senses and Pleasure


“I was surrounded by friends, my work was immense, and pleasures were abundant. Life, now, was unfolding before me, constantly and visibly, like the flowers of summer that drop fanlike petals on eternal soil. Overall, I was happiest to be alone; for it was then I was most aware of what I possessed. Free to look out over the rooftops of the city. Happy to be alone in the company of friends, the company of lovers and strangers. Everything, I decided, in this life, was pure pleasure.” 
-  Roman Payne, Rooftop Soliloquy


“He went to the church, and walked about the streets, and watched the people hurrying to and for, and patted the children on the head, and questioned beggars, and looked down into the kitchens of homes, and up to the windows, and found that everything could yield him pleasure. He had never dreamed of any walk, that anything, could give him so much happiness.” 
-  Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol


"In diving to the bottom of pleasure we bring up more gravel than pearls."
-  Honore de Balzac


"Everything we do is for the purpose of altering consciousness. We form friendships so that we can feel certain emotions, like love, and avoid others, like loneliness. We eat specific foods to enjoy their fleeting presence on our tongues. We read for the pleasure of thinking another person's thoughts."
-  Sam Harris  


"There is something self-defeating in the too-conscious pursuit of pleasure."
-  Max Eastman


"Fun I love, but too much fun is of all things the most loathsome. Mirth is better than fun, and happiness is better than mirth."
-  Thomas Carlyle


"Pleasure and discipline need to stay close friends."
-  Terri Guillemets


“When enough is not enough, a Hedonist is born.” 
-  Sukant Ratnakar, Open The Win


“The Hedonistic Imperative outlines how genetic engineering and nanotechnology will abolish suffering in all sentient life. This project is ambitious but technically feasible. It is also instrumentally rational and ethically mandatory. The metabolic pathways of pain and malaise evolved only because they once served the fitness of our genes. They will be replaced by a different sort of neural architecture. States of sublime well-being are destined to become the genetically pre-programmed norm of mental health. The world's last aversive experience will be a precisely dateable event.” 
-  David Pearce


“What did the Romans say?  “De gustibus non est disputandum”: It is worthless to discuss personal taste.  It is called 'personal' for a reason.” 
-  Massimo Marino, Daimones


"It is much easier to suppress a first desire than to satisfy those that follow."
-  Benjamin Franklin


"The size of your success is measured by the strength of your desire; the size of your dream; and how you handle disappointment along the way."
-  Robert Kiyosaki


"Human beings need pleasure the way they need vitamins."
-  Lionel Tiger


"I take it as a prime cause of the present confusion of society that it is too sickly and too doubtful to use pleasure frankly as a test of value."
-  Rebecca West



Advice     Beauty     Bibliography     Blog     Body-Mind     Broad Minded     Cheerfulness       

Contemplation     Desires     Dharmapada Sutra     Education     Epicureanism     Equanimity    

Feeling     Fitness     Five Senses     Friendship     Gardening     Generosity     Good Life 

Happiness     Hedonism    Hospitality     Independence     Kindness    Learning     Lifestyle     Links    

Meditation     Memory     Mindfulness     Moderation     Neo-Paganism     Open Minded     Paramitas    

Patience     Philosophy     Play     Pleasures     Qigong     Reading     Secular     Self-Reliance    

Sensory Pleasures     Simplicity     Solitude    Somaesthetics     Spirituality     Stoicism    Taijiquan    

Tao Te Ching     Thinking     Tolerance     Touching     Tranquility    Vigor     Virtues     Vision    

Walking     Willpower     Wisdom     Wonder     Yoga     Zen Precepts      



"Why not seize the pleasure at once, how often is happiness destroyed by preparation, foolish preparations."
-  Jane Austen


"Pleasure is the only thing to live for. Nothing ages like happiness."
-  Oscar Wilde


"The aim of the wise is not to secure pleasure, but to avoid pain."
-  Artistotle


"There is a beast in man that should be exercised, not exorcised."
-  Anton LaVey


"I don't crave companionship. It stands in my way. I live for pleasure. There are few persons who can give me as much pleasure as those acts I perform myself.  I would rather create pleasure according to my own whim than be subjected to the whims of others."
-  Anton LaVey


Epicurean Philosophy: Bibliography, Resources, Quotations, Information


"Most men pursue pleasure with such breathless haste that they hurry past it."
-  Søren Kierkegaard


"Don't allow your mind to tell your heart what to do. The mind gives up easily."
-  Paulo Coelho


"Perhaps the only way to be often happy with everything happening around or anywhere is to feel nothing about anything and anyone, but always bear in mind that only a lunatic stays in such mood."
-  Anuj Somany


"Half of enjoying a thing is expecting to enjoy it."
-  Marty Rubin


"If extravagance were a fault, it would not have a place in the festivals of the gods."
-  Aristippus, Cyrenaics 


"Faith is not Desire. Faith is Will. Desires are things that need to be satisfied, whereas Will is a force. Will changes the space around us,..."
-  Paulo Coelho, The Witch Of Portobello


"The Fremen were supreme in that quality the ancients called "spannungsbogen" -- which is the self-imposed delay between desire for a thing and the act of reaching out to grasp that thing." 
-  Frank Herbert, Dune


"I enjoy it when the world smiles; the more smiles, the warmer I am." 
-  Dejan Stojanovic, The Shape


"To the Technocrats: Have mercy on us.  Relax a bit, take time out for simple pleasures.  For example, the luxuries of electricity, indoor plumbing, central heating, instant electronic communication and such, have taught me to relearn and enjoy the basic human satisfactions of dipping water from a cold clear mountain stream; of building a wood fire in a cast-iron stove; of using long winter nights for making music, making things, making love; of writing long letters, in longhand with a fountain pen, to the few people on this earth I truly care about."
-  Edward Abbey, Postcards from Ed: Dispatches and Salvos from an American Iconoclast


"It is a self-deception of philosophers and moralists to imagine that they escape decadence by opposing it. That is beyond their will; and, however little they acknowledge it, one later discovers that they were among the most powerful promoters of decadence."
-  Friedrich Nietzsche, The Will to Power


"When you enjoy doing something it no longer feels like a task but an essential aspiration."
-  Ryan Howe


How to Support this Website


"In life one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day - or to celebrate each special day."
-  Rasheed Ogunlaru


"Boredom: the desire for desires."
-  Leo Tolstoy


"It isn't normal to know what we want.  It is a rare and difficult psychological achievement." 
-  Abraham Maslow


"Habit is the intersection of knowledge (what to do), skill (how to do), and desire (want to do)."
-  Stephen R. Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People


"You will become as small as your controlling desire; as great as you dominant aspiration."
-  James Allen


"Evolution has no foresight. Complex machinery develops its own agendas. Brains — cheat. Feedback loops evolve to promote stable heartbeats and then stumble upon the temptation of rhythm and music. The rush evoked by fractal imagery, the algorithms used for habitat selection, metastasize into art. Thrills that once had to be earned in increments of fitness can now be had from pointless introspection. Aesthetics rise unbidden from a trillion dopamine receptors, and the system moves beyond modeling the organism. It begins to model the very process of modeling. It consumes evermore computational resources, bogs itself down with endless recursion and irrelevant simulations. Like the parasitic DNA that accretes in every natural genome, it persists and proliferates and produces nothing but itself. Metaprocesses bloom like cancer, and awaken, and call themselves I." 
-  Peter Watts, Blindsight






"Decline is also a form of voluptuousness, just like growth. Autumn is just as sensual as springtime. There is as much greatness in dying as in procreation."
-  Iwan Goll


"We can often endure an extra pound of pain far more easily than we can suffer the withdrawal of an ounce of accustomed pleasure."
-  Sydney J. Harris


"Not what we have, but what we enjoy, constitutes our abundance."


"The principle of asceticism never was, nor ever can be, consistently pursued by any living creature. Let but one tenth part of the inhabitants of the earth pursue it consistently, and in a day's time they will have turned it into a Hell."
-  Jeremy Bentham


"True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so wants nothing. The greatest blessings of mankind are within us and within our reach.  A wise man is content with his lot, whatever it may be, without wishing for what he has not."
-  Seneca


"There are two ways to get enough. One is to continue to accumulate more and more. The other is to desire less."
-  G. K. Chesterton


"Happiness is not a's a by-product of a life well lived."
-  Eleanor Roosevelt


"The said truth is that it is the greatest happiness of the greatest number that is the measure of right and wrong."
-  Jeremy Bentham


"It is vain to talk of the interest of the community, without understanding what is the interest of the individual."
-  Jeremy Bentham


"No pleasure endures unseasoned by variety."
-  Publilius Syrus  


How to Live a Good Life: Advice from Wise Persons


"The essence of pleasure is spontaneity."
-  Germaine Greer


"The difference between egoistic hedonism and altruistic hedonism is but an adjective."
-  John Stack IV


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"In so much firm, pleasure-loving flesh, we cannot find the merest trace of a moral nervous system. That explains the whole enigma of Casanova's subtle genius. Lucky man that he is, he has only sensuality, and lacks the first beginnings of a soul. Bound by no ties, having no fixed aim, restrained by no prudent considerations, he can move at a different tempo from his fellow mortals, who are burdened with moral scruples, who aim at an ethical goal, who are tied by notions of social responsibility. That is the secret of his unique impetus, of his incomparable energy."
-  Stefan Zweig, Casanova: A Study in Self-Portraiture


"Variety is the soul of pleasure."
-  Aphra Behn,
The Rover


"To burn with desire and keep quiet about it is the greatest punishment we can bring on ourselves."
-  Federico García Lorca, Blood Wedding and Yerma


"Men go to far greater lengths to avoid what they fear than to obtain what they desire."
-  Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code


"Everyone believes very easily whatever he fears or desires."
-  Jean de La Fontaine


"Desire is the key to motivation, but it’s determination and commitment to an unrelenting pursuit of your goal - a commitment to excellence - that will enable you to attain the success you seek."
-  Mario Andretti


"Happiness, true happiness, is an inner quality. It is a state of mind. If your mind is at peace, you are happy. If your mind is at peace, but you have nothing else, you can be happy. If you have everything the world can give - pleasure, possessions, power - but lack peace of mind, you can never be happy."
-  Dada Vaswani


"These examples suggest what one needs to learn to control attention.  In principle any skill or discipline one can master on one’s own will serve: meditation and prayer if one is so inclined; exercise, aerobics, martial arts for those who prefer concentrating on physical skills.  Any specialization or expertise that one finds enjoyable and where one can improve one’s knowledge over time.  The important thing, however, is the attitude toward these disciplines.  If one prays in order to be holy, or exercises to develop strong pectoral muscles, or learns to be knowledgeable, then a great deal of the benefit is lost.  The important thing is to enjoy the activity for its own sake, and to know that what matters is not the result, but the control one is acquiring over one’s attention."
Mihaly CsikszentmihalyiFinding Flow: The Psychology Of Engagement With Everyday Life


"A harmless hilarity and a buoyant cheerfulness are not infrequent concomitants of genius; and we are never more deceived than when we mistake gravity for greatness, solemnity for science, and pomposity for erudition."
-  Charles Caleb Colton 


"Draw your pleasure, paint your pleasure, and express your pleasure strongly."
-  Pierre Bonnard


"It takes desire to attempt, unsuccessfully, to extinguish desire."
-  William B. Irvine, On Desire


"Decadent cooks go one step further and make sculptures of the food itself. If life is to be spent in pursuit of the extravagant, the extreme, the grotesque, the bizarre, then one's diet should reflect the fact. Life, meals, everything must be as artificial as possible - in fact works of art. So why not begin by eating a few statues?"
-  Medlar Lucan, The Decadent Cookbook


"Though it may feel otherwise, enjoying life is no more dangerous than apprehending it with continuous anxiety and gloom."
-  Alain de Botton


"If you want to have the time of your life, change how you use the time in your life."
-  Tim Fargo


"The only real difficulty with becoming disciplined is when you buy into the notion that happiness comes at the price of sacrifice.  The reality is this: Discipline becomes freedom when you are doing what you love."
-  Shannon L. Alder 


"I believe in the flesh and the appetites; 
Seeing, hearing, feeling, are miracles, and each part and tag of me is a miracle. 
Divine am I inside and out, and I make holy whatever I touch or am touch’d from;
The scent of these arm-pits, aroma finer than prayer; 
This head more than churches, bibles, and all the creeds."
-  Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass


Somaesthetics:  Body-Mind Practices and Theories


"Ah, make the most of what we yet may spend, Before we too into the Dust descend."
-  Omar Khayyam


"Life admits not of delays; when pleasure can be had, it is fit to catch it: every hour takes away part of the things that please us, and perhaps part of our disposition to be pleased."
-  Samuel Johnson


Hedonism:  Bibliography, Links, Quotations, Resources, Notes


"To a man of pleasure every moment appears to be lost, which partakes not of the vivacity of movement."
-  Joseph Addison   


"Oh, how desperately bored, in spite of their grim determination to have a Good Time, the majority of pleasure-seekers really are!"
-  Aldos Huxley


Virtues and a Good Life


"Pleasure and pain seem to have been accidentally cast in the same mold."
-  Lewis F. Korns, Thoughts


"Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for."
-  Epicurus


"The human body is the best work of art."
-  Jess C. Scott


"Some people have such good taste they can't enjoy anything." 
-  Marty Rubin


"When Americans say it was great, I know it was good.  When they say it was good, I know it was okay.  When they say it was okay, I know it was bad."
-  Laura Klos Sokol


"Pleasure is something you can easily lose the knack of, if you allow yourself to get out of practice."
-  K. J. Parker, Devices and Desires


"Here with a Loaf of Bread beneath the Bough,
A Flask of Wine, a Book of Verse - and Thou
Beside me singing in the Wilderness -
And Wilderness is Paradise enow." 
-  Omar Khayyám


"Learn not only to find what you like, learn to like what you find."
-  Anthony D'Angelo


"He who enjoys doing and enjoys what he has done is happy."
-  Goethe 


"To be conservative, then, is to prefer the familiar to the unknown, to prefer the tried to the untried, fact to mystery, the actual to the possible, the limited to the unbounded, the near to the distant, the sufficient to the superabundant, the convenient to the perfect, present laughter to utopian bliss."
-  Michael Oakeshott, Rationalism in Politics and Other Essays


"Pleasure is always derived from something outside you, whereas joy arises from within."
-  Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now


"Is it really possible to tell someone else what one feels?"
-  Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina


"Good cheer is no hindrance to a good life."
-  Aristippus, Cyrenaics 


"You don't ask what a dance means. You enjoy it. You don't ask what the world means. You enjoy it. You don't ask what you mean. You enjoy it."
-  Joseph Campbell


"If you've found meaning in your life, you don't want to go back.  You want to go forward.  You want to see more, do more. You can't wait until you're sixty-five." 
-  Morrie Schwartz


"One half of the world cannot understand the pleasures of the other."
-  Jane Austen, Emma


Epicurean Philosophy: Bibliography, Resources, Quotations, Information


"Pleasure's a sin, and sometimes sin's a pleasure."
-  Lord Byron, Don Juan


"A life of mere pleasure! A little while, in the spring-time of the senses, in the sunshine of prosperity, in the jubilee of health, it may seem well enough. But how insufficient, how mean, how terrible when age comes, and sorrow, and death! A life of pleasure! What does it look like when these great changes beat against it--when the realities of eternity stream in? It looks like the fragments of a feast, when the sun shines upon the withered garlands, and the tinsel, and the overturned tables, and the dead lees of wine."
-  E. H. Chapin, Living Words


"Pleasure is a crumbling statue."
-  Edward Counsel, Maxims


"A pleasure is full grown only when it is remembered."
-  C. S. Lewis, Out of the Silent Planet


"True pleasures are paid for in advance; false pleasures afterwards, with heavy and compound interest."
-  John Lubbock, Peace and Happiness


"Enough is as good as a feast."
-  English Proverb


"Be moderate in order to taste the joys of life in abundance."


"A fit, healthy body—that is the best fashion statement."
-  Jess C. Scott


"You must give everything to make your life as beautiful as the dreams that dance in your imagination."
-  Roman Payne


"Erase from your vocabulary the word “someday.”  Do not save things for “special occasions.”  Take into account the fact that every day is special.  Every day is a gift that we must appreciate and be thankful for.  Wear your attractive clothes, wear your nice perfume, use your fine silverware and dishes, and drink from your expensive crystal glasses … just because.  Live every day to the fullest and savor every minute of it."
-  Rodolfo Costa, Advice My Parents Gave Me


"We must not only obtain Wisdom: we must enjoy her."
-  Marcus Tullius Cicero, Selected Works


"To go beyond is as wrong as to fall short."
-  Confucius, Analects    


"The problem for us is not are our desires satisfied or not. The problem is how do we know what we desire."
-  Slavoj Žižek


"She had known happiness, exquisite happiness, intense happiness, and it silvered the rough waves a little more brightly, as daylight faded, and the blue went out of the sea and it rolled in waves of pure lemon which curved and swelled and broke upon the beach and the ecstasy burst in her eyes and waves of pure delight raced over the floor of her mind and she felt, It is enough! It is enough!" 
-  Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse


"Enjoyment is not a goal, it is a feeling that accompanies important ongoing activity."
-  Paul Goodman


"Nothing is easier than self-deceit.  For what every man wishes, that he also believes to be true."
-  Demosthenes


"What we insistently desire, over time, is what we become."
-  Neal A. Maxwell


"One must be serious about something, if one wants to have any amusement in life."
-  Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest


"Life is unpredictable so let's have a joyous and ridiculous moment with a wondrous expression."
-  Avinash Advani


"Time spent thinking about life is better spent enjoying it." 
-  Marty Rubin


"You must not know too much or be too precise or scientific about birds and trees and flowers and watercraft; a certain free-margin, and even vagueness - ignorance, credulity - helps your enjoyment of these things."
-  Henry David Thoreau 


If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun."
-  Katherine Hepburn


"Musical compositions can be very sad - Chopin - but you have the pleasure of this sadness. The cheap consolation is: you will be happy. The higher consolation is the pleasure and recognition of your unhappiness, the pleasure of having recognised that fate, destiny and life are such as they are and so you reach a higher form of consciousness."
-  Umberto Eco


The Five Senses and Pleasure


"It's more interesting isn't it, if I've got a hedonistic dark side?"
-  Michael Fassbender 






"This generation... they have a different attitude.  Instead of sitting and watching something, they want to be a part of it - they're very hedonistic and sensual."
-  Steve Wynn


"As you walk down the fairway of life you must smell the roses, for you only get to play one round."
-  Ben Hogan

"Be absolutely determined to enjoy what you do."
-  Gerry Sikorski


"It is impossible to live a pleasant life without living wisely and well and justly. And it is impossible to live wisely and well and justly without living a pleasant life."


"We revel in the laxness of the path we take."
-  Charles Baudelaire


"The exotic and the erotic ideals go hand in hand, and this fact also contributes another proof of a more or less obvious truth - that is, that a love of the exotic is usually an imaginative projection of a sexual desire."
-  Mario Praz, The Romantic Agony


"Elaborate burial customs are a sure sign of decadence."
-  J.G. Ballard, The Complete Short Stories


"Art is contemplation. It is the pleasure of the mind which searches into nature and which there divines the spirit of which nature herself is animated."
-  Auguste Rodin


"Joy and Temperance and Repose, slam the door on the doctor's nose."
-  Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 


"There is no such thing as perpetual tranquility of mind while we live here; because life itself is but motion, and can never be without desire, nor without fear, no more than without sense."
-  Thomas Hobbes


"Always desire to learn something useful."
-  Sophocles 


“A child's reading is guided by pleasure, but his pleasure is undifferentiated; he cannot distinguish, for example, between aesthetic pleasure and the pleasures of learning or daydreaming. In adolescence we realize that there are different kinds of pleasure, some of which cannot be enjoyed simultaneously, but we need help from others in defining them. Whether it be a matter of taste in food or taste in literature, the adolescent looks for a mentor in whose authority he can believe. He eats or reads what his mentor recommends and, inevitably, there are occasions when he has to deceive himself a little; he has to pretend that he enjoys olives or War and Peace a little more than he actually does. Between the ages of twenty and forty we are engaged in the process of discovering who we are, which involves learning the difference between accidental limitations which it is our duty to outgrow and the necessary limitations of our nature beyond which we cannot trespass with impunity. Few of us can learn this without making mistakes, without trying to become a little more of a universal man than we are permitted to be. It is during this period that a writer can most easily be led astray by another writer or by some ideology. When someone between twenty and forty says, apropos of a work of art, 'I know what I like,'he is really saying 'I have no taste of my own but accept the taste of my cultural milieu', because, between twenty and forty, the surest sign that a man has a genuine taste of his own is that he is uncertain of it. After forty, if we have not lost our authentic selves altogether, pleasure can again become what it was when we were children, the proper guide to what we should read.” 
-  W.H. Auden, The Dyer's Hand


"I exist only as a whole; my only claim is to be natural, and the pleasure I feel in an action, I take as a sign that I ought to do it."
-  André Gide, The Immoralist


"It is a mistake,” he said, “to suppose that the public wants the environment protected or their lives saved and that they will be grateful to any idealist who will fight for such ends. What the public wants is their own individual comfort."
-  Isaac Asimov, The Gods Themselves


"But that's the whole aim of civilization: to make everything a source of enjoyment."
-  Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina


"If a book is well written, I always find it too short."
-  Jane Austen, Catharine and Other Writings


Hedonism:  Bibliography, Links, Quotations, Resources, Notes


"Of the thousands who have paid homage to virtue, barely one has thought to inspect the pedestal on which it stands."
-  Frances Wright


“The pleasure of living and the pleasure of the orgasm are identical. Extreme orgasm anxiety forms the basis of the general fear of life.” 
-  Wilhelm Reich


"Ultimately, it is the desire, not the desired, that we love."
-  Friedrich Nietzsche


"Those who restrain desire do so because theirs is weak enough to be restrained."
-  William Blake, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell


"They luxuriated in the feeling of deep and all pervading satisfaction, a feeling of knowing absolutely that all was well with the world and them and that the world was not only their oyster it was also their linguine with clam sauce.  Not only were all things possible, but all things were theirs."
-  Hubert Selby Jr., Requiem for a Dream



Advice     Beauty     Bibliography     Blog     Body-Mind     Broad Minded     Cheerfulness       

Contemplation     Desires     Dharmapada Sutra     Education     Epicureanism     Equanimity    

Feeling     Fitness     Five Senses     Friendship     Gardening     Generosity     Good Life 

Happiness     Hedonism    Hospitality     Independence     Kindness    Learning     Lifestyle     Links    

Meditation     Memory     Mindfulness     Moderation     Neo-Paganism     Open Minded     Paramitas    

Patience     Philosophy     Play     Pleasures     Qigong     Reading     Secular     Self-Reliance    

Sensory Pleasures     Simplicity     Solitude    Somaesthetics     Spirituality     Stoicism    Taijiquan    

Tao Te Ching     Thinking     Tolerance     Touching     Tranquility    Vigor     Virtues     Vision    

Walking     Willpower     Wisdom     Wonder     Yoga     Zen Precepts      



"Yes, there is a Nirvana; it is leading your sheep to a green pasture, and in putting your child to sleep, and in writing the last line of your poem."
-  Kahlil Gibran, Sand and Foam


“What destroys a man more quickly than to work, think and feel without inner necessity, without any deep personal desire, without pleasure - as a mere automaton of duty?” 
-  Friedrich Nietzsche, Ecce Homo


"Love is an irresistible desire to be irresistibly desired."
-  Robert Frost


"The starting point of all achievement is desire."
-  Napoleon Hill


"The madness of the eyes is the lure of the abyss. Sirens lurk in the dark depths of the pupils as they lurk at the bottom of the sea, that I know for sure - but I have never encountered them, and I am searching still for the profound and plaintive gazes in whose depths I might be able, like Hamlet redeemed, to drown the Ophelia of my desire."
-  Jean Lorrain, Monsieur De Phocas


Somaesthetics:  Body-Mind Practices and Theories


"Like symbolism, decadence puts forth the idea that the function of literature is to evoke impressions and 'correspondences', rather than to realistically depict the world. ... the decadent aestheticized decay and took pleasure in perversity. In decadent literature, sickness is preferable to health, not only because sickness was regarded as more interesting, but because sickness was construed as subversive, as a threat to the very fabric of society. By embracing the marginal, the unhealthy and the deviant, the decadents attacked bourgeois life, which they perceived as the chief enemy of art."
-  Asti Hustvedt


"The best way, indeed, perhaps the only way, to attain lasting happiness is not to change the world around us or our place in it, but to change ourselves." 
-  William B. Irvine, On Desire


"If you always attach positive emotions to the things you want, and never attach negative emotions to the things you don't, then that which you desire most will invariably come your way."   
-  Matt D. Miller


"We must risk delight. We can do without pleasure, but not delight.  Not enjoyment.  We must have the stubbornness to accept our gladness in the ruthless furnace of this world."
-  Jack Gilbert


"It is indisputable that the being whose capacities of enjoyment are low, has the greatest chance of having them fully satisfied; and a highly endowed being will always feel that any happiness which he can look for, as the world is constituted, is imperfect.  But he can learn to bear its imperfections, if they are at all bearable; and they will not make him envy the being who is indeed unconscious of the imperfections, but only because he feels not at all the good which those imperfections qualify.  It is better to be a human being dissatisfied than a pig satisfied; better to be Socrates dissatisfied than a fool satisfied.  And if the fool, or the pig, is of a different opinion, it is only because they only know their own side of the question." 
-  John Stuart Mill, Utilitarianism


"As long as I have a want, I have a reason for living. Satisfaction is death."
-  George Bernard Shaw, Overruled


"Believe me! The secret of reaping the greatest fruitfulness and the greatest enjoyment from life is to live dangerously!"
-  Friedrich Nietzsche


"Doing is the great thing, for if people resolutely do what is right, they come in time to like doing it."
-  John Ruskin






Recommended Reading


The Art of Happiness.  By Epicurus.  Translation and commentary by George K. Strodach.  Penguin Classics, 2012.

The Birth of Hedonism: The Cyrenaic Philosophers and Pleasure as a Way of Life.  By Kurt Lampe.  Princeton University Press, 2014. 

The Conquest of Happiness   By Bertrand Russell.  Introduction by Daniel Dennett.  Liveright, 1930, 2013. 

Epicurean and Hedonistic Philosophy: Bibliography, Resources, Quotations, Information 

Epicureanism at the Origins of Modernity  By Catherine Wilson.  Oxford University Press, 2008. 

Epicureanism: A Very Short Introduction   By Catherine Wilson.  Oxford University Press, 2016. 

The Five Senses and Pleasure

Happiness: A History  By Darrin M. McMahon.  Grove Press, 2006.  

The Hedonism Handbook: Mastering The Lost Arts Of Leisure And Pleasure  By Michael Flocker.  DaCapo Press, 2004. 

The How of Happiness: A New Approach to Getting the Life You Want  By Sonja Lyubomirsky.  Penguin Books, 2008. 

How to Live a Good Life: Advice from Wise Persons 

The Morality of Happiness  By Julia Annas.  Oxford University Press, 1995. 

Nicomachean Ethics   By Aristotle.  Translated by Christopher Rowe.  Commentary and notes by Sarah Broadie.  Oxford University Press, 2002.

On Desire: Why We Want What We Want  By William B. Irvine.  Oxford University Press, 2006. 

Pleasures, Desires and Enjoyment:  Quotations, Poems, Sayings 

Pursuits of Wisdom: Six Ways of Life in Ancient Philosophy from Socrates to Plotinus  By John M. Cooper.  Princeton University Press, 2012. 

Somaesthetics:  Body-Mind Practices and Theories 

Time and the Art of Living  By Robert Grudin.  Mariner Books, 1997. 

Travels with Epicurus: A Journey to a Greek Island in Search of a Fulfilled Life  By Daniel Klein.  New York, Penguin Books, 2012. 

Virtues and a Good Life

The Wisdom of Pleasures: "The School of Voluptuousness" and "The Art of Enjoyment."  By Julien Offray de La Mettrie, 1747. 


Cloud Hands Blog.  By Michael P. Garofalo.  Over 2,400 indexed posts on well being, philosophy, somaesthetics, taijiquan, qigong, walking, gardening, yoga, Taoism, hedonism, and spirituality.  Over 700,000 page views as of 6/1/2016.  





Advice     Beauty     Bibliography     Blog     Body-Mind     Broad Minded     Cheerfulness       

Contemplation     Desires     Dharmapada Sutra     Education     Epicureanism     Equanimity    

Feeling     Fitness     Five Senses     Friendship     Gardening     Generosity 

Happiness     Hedonism    Hospitality     Independence     Kindness    Learning     Links    

Meditation     Memory     Mindfulness     Moderation     Open Minded     Paramitas    

Patience     Philosophy     Play     Pleasures     Qigong     Reading     Self-Reliance    

Sensory Pleasures     Simplicity     Solitude    Somaesthetics     Stoicism    Taijiquan    

Tao Te Ching     Thinking     Tolerance     Touching     Tranquility    Vigor     Vision    

Walking     Willpower     Wisdom     Wonder     Zen Precepts      





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Research by
Michael P. Garofalo, M.S.



Michael P. Garofalo, A Brief Biography

Green Way Research, Red Bluff, California

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This webpage was last modified and updated on March 22, 2107.     

This webpage was first distributed online on August 6, 2012.   


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This webpage work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Created by Michael P. Garofalo, Green Way Research, Valley Spirit Center, Gushen Grove Notebooks, Red Bluff, California, © 2012-2017 CCA 4.0

Modified and updated by Michael P. Garofalo, Green Way Research, Cloud Hands Home, City of Vancouver, Washington State, Northwest USA, © 2017- CCA 4.0



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