Les chemins du sacré
Traduction de H. Rackham (1914) “But I must explain to you how all this mistaken idea of denouncing pleasure and praising pain was born and I will give you a complete account of the system, and expound the actual teachings of the great explorer of the truth, the master-builder of human happiness. No one rejects, dislikes, or avoids pleasure itself, because it is pleasure, but because those who do not know how to pursue pleasure rationally encounter consequences that are extremely painful.
Nor again is there anyone who loves or pursues or desires to obtain pain of itself, because it is pain, but because occasionally circumstances occur in which toil and pain can procure him some great pleasure. To take a trivial example, which of us ever undertakes laborious physical exercise, except to obtain some advantage from it ? But who has any right to find fault with a man who chooses to enjoy a pleasure that has no annoying consequences, or one who avoids a pain that produces no resultant pleasure ? ” Haec igitur prima lex amicitiae sanciatur, ut ab amicis honesta petamus, amicorum causa honesta faciamus, ne exspectemus quidem, dum rogemur ; studium semper adsit, cunctatio absit ; consilium vero dare audeamus libere.
Plurimum in amicitia amicorum bene suadentium valeat auctoritas, eaque et adhibeatur ad monendum non modo aperte sed etiam acriter, si res postulabit, et adhibitae pareatur. Post hoc impie perpetratum quod in aliis quoque iam timebatur, tamquam licentia crudelitati indulta per suspicionum nebulas aestimati quidam noxii damnabantur. quorum pars necati, alii puniti bonorum multatione actique laribus suis extorres nullo sibi relicto praeter querelas et lacrimas, stipe conlaticia victitabant, et civili iustoque imperio ad voluntatem converso cruentam, claudebantur opulentae domus et clarae.
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