"... the great mistake of the reformers is to believe that life begins and ends with health, and that happiness begins and ends with a full stomach and the power to enjoy physical pleasures, even of the finer kind."
"So far as laws and institutions avail, men should have equality of opportunity for happiness; that is, of education, wealth, power. These make happiness secure. An equal diffusion of happiness so far as laws and institutions avail."
"In the course of the actual attainment of selfish ends--an attainment conditioned in this way by universality--there is formed a system of complete interdependence, wherein the livelihood, happiness, and legal status of one man is interwoven with the livelihood, happiness, and rights of all. On this system, individual happiness, etc. depend, and only in this connected system are they actualized and secured."
"Continual success in obtaining those things which a man from time to time desireth, that is to say, continual prospering, is thatmen call FELICITY; I mean Felicity of this life. For there is no such thing as perpetual Tranquillity of mind, while we live here; because Life it self is but Motion, and can never be without Desire, nor without Faeroe, no more than without Sense."
"Were a stranger to drop on a sudden into this world, I would shew him, as a specimen of its ills, an hospital full of diseases, aprison crowded with malefactors and debtors, a field of battle strewed with carcases, a fleet foundering in the ocean, a nation languishing under tyranny, famine, or pestilence. To turn the gay side of life to him and give him a notion of its pleasures; whither should I conduct him? to a ball, to an opera, to court? He might justly think, that I was only shewing him a diversity of distress and sorrow."
"Labour and poverty, so abhorred by every one, are the certain lot of the far greater number: And those few privileged persons, whoenjoy ease and opulence, never reach contentment or true felicity. All the goods of life united would not make a very happy man: But all the ills united would make a wretch indeed; and any one of them almost (and who can be free from every one), nay often the absence of one good (and who can possess all) is sufficient to render life ineligible."
"The great end of all human industry is the attainment of happiness. For this were arts invented, sciences cultivated, laws ordained, and societies modelled, by the most profound wisdom of patriots and legislators. Even the lonely savage, who lies exposed to the inclemency of the elements and the fury of wild beasts, forgets not, for a moment, this grand object of his being."
"He could walk, or rather turn about in his little garden, and feel more solid happiness from the flourishing of a cabbage or the growing of a turnip than was ever received from the most ostentatious show the vanity of man could possibly invent. He could delight himself with thinking, "Here will I set such a root, because my Camilla likes it; here, such another, because it is my little David's favorite."
"Would mankind be but contented without the continual use of that little but significant pronoun "mine" or "my own," with what luxurious delight might they revel in the property of others!... But if envy makes me sicken at the sight of everything that is excellent out of my own possession, then will the sweetest food be sharp as vinegar, and every beauty will in my depraved eyes appear as deformity."