Jul 16 Feb 03
“ In opposition to the “optimism” expressed by any kind of “naturalist” eudaimonistic ethics, especially Aristotle’s, which ultimately associates the Sovereign Good with happiness and pleasure, the inevitable demand for happiness all subjects express clashes with the fact that “absolutely nothing is prepared for [happiness], either in the macrocosm or the microcosm.”
This Freudian premise has profound consequences for all three terms of the Aristotelian equation: pleasure, happiness, and the Sovereign Good. First of all, extreme pleasure is dissociated from happiness, since it is “unbearable” for us; happiness (as “moderated” pleasure) is not a biological given for man but some- thing which should be located on the side of symbolic fictions: it requires a “lowering of tone of what is properly speaking the energy of pleasure.” In accordance with point 1 above, this “tempering”—provided by the law—is also what is needed to “move towards reality” as opposed to the primordial Real of a supposedly pure jouissance: in other words, the Real of das Ding is the “support of an aversion” inasmuch as it is “an object which literally gives too much pleasure,” painful jouissance.
Subjectivity and Otherness, A Philosophical Reading of Lacan - L. Chiesa