Psychological Egoism

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Chelsea Gee Philosophy September 11, 2013 Psychological Egoism Psychological Egoism is the position that the ultimate motive of all actions is selfish. It is not the position that everyone should be motivated by selfish desires, but rather that they are motivated by selfish desires. This is supposed to be a psychological fact of human motivations. Joel Feinberg presents a multitude of arguments against psychological egoistic hedonism. There are four “arguments” which support psychological egoism: (a) “Every action of mine is prompted by motives or desires or impulses which are my motives and not somebody else’s.” (b) “When a person gets what she or he wants, she or he feels pleasure.” (c) “We often deceive ourselves about our…show more content…
It can also be defined as a “certain indefinable characteristic of physical sensation” (p 434). You may also receive Pleasure2 from satisfaction of something such as “knowledge, religious experience, and aesthetic expression” (p 433). Pleasure2 refers to “the feeling of satisfaction that often comes when one gets what one desires” (p 434). In conclusion, Joel Feinberg argues against egoists and their Psychological Egoism theory. People can be happy, Feinberg claims, only when they desire something other than their own happiness. And since many people are happy, it follows that many people do desire something other than their own happiness. Therefore, psychological egoism is
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