Happiness as an Ultimate End Essay by muffinman

Happiness as an Ultimate End
A discussion on the nature of happiness as an end by focusing on happiness as it stands within John Mill's utilitarian philosophy.
# 59850 | 1,817 words | 4 sources | MLA | 2005 | GB
Published on Jul 05, 2005 in Philosophy (General)

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This paper begins by mentioning and analyzing moral philosophies which do not take happiness as an ultimate end, such as the Aristotelian, Romantic and Protestant schools of thought. After discarding these ideas, as Mill does, the paper then questions Mill's statement that general happiness for society is everyone's moral goal, and finds that he does not argue this logical step through convincingly.

From the Paper:

"It is recognized, and Mill himself admits, that his conception of happiness is something discrete from the basic theory of Utilitarianism, and one who does not agree with one, could still accept the other. Even so, the question of what exactly happiness is is a crucial one in deciding whether Mill's later assertions that happiness is the ultimate end of the individual, and general happiness is the ultimate end of society, are true. If happiness was made up of other things, or if it is tangled up in means to pleasure (such as money), the question increases in complexity. Mill certainly argues that happiness is pleasure, in some way, and that this is the ultimate end for an individual. From this, he makes the logical leap to the assertion that under Bentham's General Happiness Principle, general happiness is the end of society under a utilitarian philosophy."

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