Quotation by Lewis Carroll

Causists have tried to twist "doing good" into another form of "doing evil," and have said "you get pleasure yourself by giving this pleasure to another: so it is merely a refined kind of selfishness, as your own pleasure is a motive for what you do." I say, "it is not selfishness, that my own pleasure should be a motive so long as it is not the motive that would outweigh the other, if the two came into collision." The "selfish man" is he who would do the thing, even if it harmed others, so long as it gave him pleasure: the "unselfish man" is he who would still do the thing, even if it gave him no pleasure, so long as it pleased others.
Lewis Carroll [Charles Lutwidge Dodgson] (1832–1898), British author, mathematician, clergyman. letter, Nov. 13, 1890, to Ellen Terry. The Letters of Lewis Carroll, vol. II, ed. Morton N. Cohen, Oxford University Press (1979).
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