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Lesson Plans


Re: John Locke

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Lawrence A. Parker/OCCTI (occti)
Fri, 20 Aug 1999 19:02:00 -0400


Subject: Re:attachment

> Larry, I appreciate your contributions to the list, and would like to read
> the Locke quote, but it appears on the digest (and in the archives) as
> thirteen full pages of the letter "A".
> Is there another way?
> Betty

Sorry about that; sometimes it works, sometimes it don't! For others who
may not have been able to open it (note: strange looking words are in the
original, old English):

"The Mind has a different relish, as well as the Palate; and you will as
fruitlessly endeavour to delight all Men with Riches or Glory, (which yet
some Men place their Happiness in,) as you would to satisfie all Men's
Hunger with Cheese or Lobsters; which though very agreeable and delicious
fare to some, are to others extremely nauseous and offensive: And many
People would with Reason prefer the griping of an hungry Belly, to those
Dishes, which are a Feast to others. Hence it was, I think, that the
Philosophers of old did in vain enquire, whether Summum bonum (the chief
good) consisted in Riches, or bodily Delights, or Virtue, or Contemplation:
And they might have as reasonably disputed, whether the best Relish were to
be found in Apples, Plumbs, or Nuts; and have divided themselves into Sects
upon it. For as pleasant Tastes depend not on the things themselves, but
their agreeableness to this or that particulate Palate, wherein there is
great variety: So the greatest Happiness consists, in the having those
things which produce the greatest Pleasure, and the absence of those which
cause any disturbance, any pain, which to different Men are very different
things. If therefore Men in this Life only have hope; if in this Life they
can only enjoy, 'tis not strange, nor unreasonable, they should seek their
Happiness by avoiding all things that disease them here, and by preferring
all that delight them; wherein it will be no wonder to find variety and
difference. For if there be no Prospect beyond the Grave, the inference is
certainly right, Let us eat and drink, let us enjoy what we delight in, for
to morrow we shall die. This, I think, may serve to shew us the Reason, why,
though all Men's desires tend to Happiness, yet they are not moved by the
same Object. Men may chuse different things, and yet all chuse right,
supposing them only like a Company of poor Insects, whereof some are Bees,
delighted with Flowers, and their sweetness; others, Bettles, delighted with
other kinds of Viands; which having enjoyed for a Season, they should cease
to be, and exist no more for ever."