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Plotinus ENNEADS - THE FIRST ENNEAD Complete

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3. Yes, but if the well-being has lasted a long time, if that present spectacle has been a longer time before the eyes?

If in the greater length of time the man has seen more deeply, time has certainly done something for him, but if all the process has brought him no further vision, then one glance would give all he has had.

4. Still the one life has known pleasure longer than the other?

But pleasure cannot be fairly reckoned in with Happiness — unless indeed by pleasure is meant the unhindered Act [of the true man], in which case this pleasure is simply our “Happiness.” And even pleasure, though it exist continuously, has never anything but the present; its past is over and done with.

5. We are asked to believe, then, it will be objected, that if one man has been happy from first to last, another only at the last, and a third, beginning with happiness, has lost it, their shares are equal?

This is straying from the question: we were comparing the happy among themselves: now we are asked to compare the not-happy at the time when they are out of happiness with those in actual possession of happiness. If these last are better off, they are so as men in possession of happiness against men without it and their advantage is always by something in the present.

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Reference address : https://www.ellopos.net/elpenor/greek-texts/ancient-greece/plotinus/enneads-1.asp?pg=60