Sec 1: Virtues, Vices

PART 3: THE OTHER VIRTUES AND VICES

SEC. 1: THE ORIGIN OF THE NATURAL VIRTUES AND VICES

  • We now examine natural virtues and vices which are independent of men’s artifice and contrivance.
    • This will conclude this system of morals.
  • The chief spring or actuating principle of the human mind is pleasure or pain.
    • When these sensations are removed from our thought and feeling, we are incapable of:
      • passion or action
      • desire or volition.
  • The most immediate effects of pleasure and pain are the propense and averse motions of the mind.
    • These are diversified into:
      • volition
      • desire and aversion
      • grief and joy
      • hope and fear, according as the pleasure or pain:
        • changes its situation and becomes:
          • probable or improbable
          • certain or uncertain, or
          • out of our power for the present moment.
  • But when the objects that cause pleasure or pain acquire a relation to ourselves or others, they still continue to excite desire and aversion, grief and joy.
    • But they cause, at the same time, the indirect passions of:
      • pride or humility
      • love or hatred
        • In this case, they have a double relation of impressions and ideas to the pain or pleasure.
  • Moral distinctions depend entirely on peculiar sentiments of pain and pleasure.
    • Whatever mental quality in ourselves or others gives us a satisfaction, by the survey or reflection, is of course virtuous
    • Everything that gives uneasiness is vicious.
  • Every quality which gives pleasure in ourselves or others, always causes pride or love.
    • Every quality that produces uneasiness, excites humility or hatred.
  • It follows that these two particulars are equivalent with regard to our mental qualities:
    • virtue and the power of producing love or pride
    • vice and the power of producing humility or hatred.
  • Therefore, we must judge of the one by the other in every case.
    • Any quality of the mind which causes:
      • love or pride can be called virtuous.
      • hatred or humility can be called vicious.
  • If any action is virtuous or vicious, it is only as a sign of some quality or character.
  • It must depend on durable principles of the mind which:
    • extend over the whole conduct
    • enter into the personal character.
  • Actions themselves do not proceed from any constant principle.
    • They have no influence on:
      • love or hatred
      • pride or humility
    • Consequently, they are never considered in morality.
  • This reflection is obvious and is the most important in the present subject.
    • We should never consider any single action in our enquiries on the origin of morals.
    • We only consider the quality or character from which the action proceeded.
      • These alone are durable enough to affect our sentiments concerning the person.
  • Actions are better indications of a character than:
    • words, or
    • even wishes and sentiments.
  • They are attended with love or hatred, praise or blame only when they are indications.
  • To discover the true origin of morals and love or hatred arising from mental qualities, we must:
    • take the matter pretty deep
    • compare some principles already examined and explained.
  • We begin with considering anew the nature and force of sympathy.
    • The minds of all men are similar in their feelings and operations.
    • No one can be actuated by any affection which others are not susceptible to, in some degree.
  • In wound-up strings, the motion of one string communicates itself to the rest.
    • So all the affections:
      • readily pass from one person to another.
      • beget correspondent movements in every human creature.
  • When I see the effects of passion in a person’s voice and gesture, my mind:
    • immediately passes from these effects to their causes.
    • forms a lively idea of the passion converted into the passion itself.
  • In like manner, when I perceive the causes of any emotion, my mind is:
    • conveyed to the effects
    • actuated with a like emotion.
  • If I were at a terribly surgery, the following would have a great effect on my mind and excite the strongest pity and terror even before it began:
    • the preparation of the instruments
    • the laying of the bandages
    • the heating of the irons
    • the signs of anxiety and concern in the patient and assistants
  • No passion of another discovers itself immediately to the mind.
    • We are only sensible of its causes or effects.
  • From these we infer the passion.
    • Consequently, these give rise to our sympathy.
  • Our sense of beauty depends very much on this principle.
    • An object is:
      • beautiful if it produces pleasure in its possessor.
      • disagreeable and deformed if it produces pain.
  • Thus, the convenience of a house, the fertility of a field, the strength of a horse, the capacity, security, and swift-sailing of a vessel, form the principal beauty of those objects.
  • Here, the beautiful object pleases only by its tendency to produce a certain effect.
    • That effect is the pleasure or advantage of some other person.
    • The pleasure of a stranger pleases us only by sympathy.
  • The beauty in everything we find useful is owing to this principle.
    • How considerable a part this is of beauty can easily appear on reflection.
  • An object which causes pleasure to its possessor is sure to please the spectator by a delicate sympathy with the possessor.
    • Most of the works of art are esteemed beautiful, in proportion to their fitness for man’s use.
    • Even many of nature’s productions derive their beauty from that source.
  • On most occasions, handsome and beautiful is a relative quality, not an absolute one.
    • It pleases us only by its tendency to produce an agreeable end.

Footnote  25:

  • Quinct. lib. 8.
  • “A horse with narrow flanks looks more comely and moves faster.
  • An athlete whose muscles have been developed by training presents a handsome appearance.
    • He is also better prepared for the contest.
  • Attractivenes is invariably associated with efficient functioning.
    • It takes no outstanding powers of judgement to wake this distinction.”
  • In many instances, the same principle produces our sentiments of morals and beauty.
    • Justice is the most esteemed virtue.
    • Injustice is the most detested vice.
  • There are no qualities which go farther to fix the amiable or odious character.
  • Justice is a moral virtue merely because it has that tendency to the good of mankind.
    • It just an artificial invention to that purpose.
      • The same may be said of:
        • allegiance
        • the laws of nations
        • modesty
        • good-manners.
      • All these are mere human contrivances for the interest of society.
  • There is a very strong sentiment of morals in all ages and nations.
    • We must allow that the reflecting on the tendency of characters and mental qualities, is sufficient to give us the sentiments of approbation and blame.
  • The means to an end can only be agreeable if the end is agreeable.
    • The good of society, where our own interest is not concerned, or that of our friends, pleases only by sympathy.
    • It follows that sympathy is the source of the esteem we pay to all the artificial virtues.
  • Sympathy is a very powerful principle in human nature.
    • It has a great influence on our taste of beauty,
    • It produces our sentiment of morals in all the artificial virtues.
    • It also gives rise to many of the other virtues.
  • Qualities acquire our approbation because of their tendency to the good of mankind.
    • This presumption becomes certain when we find that most of the qualities we naturally approve of, actually:
      • have that tendency
      • render a man a proper member of society.
  • While the qualities, which we naturally disapprove of:
    • have a contrary tendency
    • render any intercourse with the person dangerous or disagreeable.
  • For having found, that such tendencies have force enough to produce the strongest sentiment of morals, we can never reasonably, in these cases, look for any other cause of approbation or blame.
    • It is an inviolable maxim in philosophy that where any cause is sufficient for an effect, we should:
      • be satisfied with it
      • not multiply causes without necessity.
  • We have happily attained experiments in the artificial virtues, where the tendency of qualities to the good of society, is the sole cause of our approbation, without any suspicion of the concurrence of another principle.
  • From thence we learn the force of that principle.
    • A true philosopher will never require any other principle to account for the strongest approbation and esteem where:
      • that principle may take place
      • the quality approved of is really beneficial to society.
  • Many of the natural virtues have this tendency to the good of society.
    • Meekness, beneficence, charity, generosity, clemency, moderation, equity bear the greatest figure among the moral qualities.
      • These are commonly denominated as social virtues, to mark their tendency to the good of society.
  • Some philosophers have represented all moral distinctions as the effect of artifice and education when:
    • skillful politicians tried to
      • restrain the turbulent passions of men
      • make them operate to the public good, by the notions of honour and shame.
  • However, this system is inconsistent with experience.
    1. There are other virtues and vices besides those which have this tendency to the public advantage and loss.
    2. Had men no natural sentiment of approbation and blame, it could never be excited by politicians.
      • The words ‘laudable’ and ‘praise-worthy’, ‘blamable’ and ‘odious’ would just be as intelligible, as if those words were perfectly unknown to us.
  • This system is erroneous.
    • But it may teach us that:
      • moral distinctions arise from the tendency of qualities and characters to the interests of society
      • our concern for that interest makes us approve or disapprove of them.
  • We only have such extensive concern for society through sympathy.
    • Consequently, sympathy takes us so far out of ourselves, as to give us the same pleasure or uneasiness in the characters of others, as if they had a tendency to our own advantage or loss.
  • The only difference between the natural virtues and justice is that the good resulting from virtue:
    • arises from every single act
    • is the object of some natural passion.
  • Whereas a single act of justice may often be contrary to the public good.
  • Only the concurrence of mankind is advantageous in a general scheme or system of action.
  • When I relieve persons in distress, my natural humanity is my motive.
    • I have promoted the happiness of my fellow-creatures as far as my aid extends.
  • But if we examine the questions in any justice tribunal, humanity often decides contrary to the laws of justice.
    • Judges take from a poor man to give to a rich.
    • They bestow on the dissolute the labour of the industrious.
    • They put into the hands of the vicious, the means of harming themselves and others.
  • However, the whole scheme of law and justice is advantageous to society.
    • Men established law and justice by their voluntary conventions, with a view to this advantage.
  • After it is established by these conventions, it is naturally attended with a strong sentiment of morals.
    • These moral sentiments proceed only from our sympathy with the interests of society.
    • We do not need any other explanation of that esteem which attends the natural virtues which have a tendency to the public good.
  • There are several circumstances which render this hypothesis more probable with regard to the natural, than the artificial virtues.
  • The imagination is more affected by what is particular, than by what is general.
    • The sentiments are always moved with difficulty if their objects are loose and undetermined.
  • The whole system of justice is beneficial to society
    • But the particular acts of justice are not beneficial.
    • We are concerned for the benefit the whole society receives from justice, but not for what a single person receives.
  • On the contrary, every particular act of generosity is beneficial to the person who deserves it.
    • Therefore, it is natural to think that generosity will affect our sentiments and command our approbation more than those of justice.
  • The approbation of justice arises from their tendencies.
    • Thus, we can better ascribe the same cause to the approbation of generosity.
  • Regarding similar effects, if a cause can be discovered for one effect, we should extend that cause to all the other effects which can be accounted for by it.
    • This is more true if these other effects are attended with peculiar circumstances which facilitate the operation of that cause.
  • The present system may have two objections.
    1. When any quality or character has a tendency to the good of mankind, we are pleased with it and approve of it, because it presents the lively idea of pleasure.
      • This idea affects us by sympathy.
      • It itself is a kind of pleasure.
      • But this sympathy is very variable.
      • Our sentiments of morals must admit of all the same variations.
      • We sympathize more with:
        • persons contiguous to us, than with persons remote from us.
        • our acquaintance, than with strangers
        • our countrymen, than with foreigners.
      • Despite this variation of our sympathy, we give the same approbation to the same moral qualities in China as in England.
        • They appear equally virtuous.
        • They recommend themselves equally to a judicious spectator’s esteem.
      • The sympathy varies without a variation in our esteem.
        • Therefore, our esteem does not proceed from sympathy.
  • I answer that the approbation of moral qualities is not derived from reason or any comparison of ideas.
    • It proceeds entirely from:
      • a moral taste
      • certain sentiments of pleasure or disgust
        • These arise on the contemplation and view of particular qualities or characters.
  • Those sentiments, wherever they are derived from, must vary according to the distance or contiguity of the objects.
    • I cannot feel the same lively pleasure from the virtues of a person who lived in Greece 2,000 years ago, that I feel from the virtues of a familiar friend and acquaintance.
      • I do not say that I esteem the one more than the other:
  • Therefore, if the variation of the sentiment, without a variation of the esteem, is an objection, it must have equal force against every other system, as against that of sympathy.
    • But to consider the matter a-right, it has no force at all.
    • It is the easiest matter in the world to account for it.
  • Our situation, with regard both to persons and things, is in continual fluctuation; and a man, that lies at a distance from us, may, in a little time, become a familiar acquaintance.
    • Besides, every particular man has a peculiar position with regard to others.
    • It is impossible we could ever converse together on any reasonable terms, were each of us to consider characters and persons, only as they appear from his peculiar point of view.
  • To prevent those continual contradictions and arrive at a more stable judgment of things, we:
    • fix on some steady and general points of view.
    • always place ourselves in them, whatever our present situation.
  • Similarly, external beauty is determined merely by pleasure.
    • A beautiful countenance cannot give so much pleasure when seen 20 paces away, as when it is nearer to us.
  • We say not, however, that it appears to us less beautiful.
    • Because we know what effect it will have in such a position, and by that reflection we correct its momentary appearance.
  • In general, all sentiments of blame or praise are variable according to:
    • our nearness or remoteness to the person blamed or praised
    • our mind’s present disposition.
  • But we do not regard these variations in our general decision.
    • We still apply the terms expressive of our liking or dislike, in the same way as if we remained in one point of view.
  • Experience soon teaches us this method of correcting our sentiments, or at least, of correcting our language, where the sentiments are more stubborn and inalterable.
    • If our servant is diligent and faithful, he may excite stronger sentiments of love and kindness than Marcus Brutus in history.
    • But we do not say that the Marcus Brutus is more laudable than our servant.
    • If we approached equally near to that renowned patriot, he would command a much higher degree of affection and admiration.
  • Such corrections are common with regard to all the senses.
    • It were impossible we could ever make use of language, or communicate our sentiments to one another, did we not correct the momentary appearances of things, and overlook our present situation.
  • We blame or praise him from the influence of characters and qualities, on those who have an intercourse with any person.
    • We do not consider whether the persons, affected by the qualities, are our acquaintance or strangers, countrymen or foreigners.
  • We overlook our own interest in those general judgments.
    • We do not blame a man for opposing us in any of our pretensions, when his own interest is particularly concerned.
  • We make allowance for a certain degree of selfishness in men.
    • Because we know it to be:
      • inseparable from human nature
      • inherent in our frame and constitution.
  • By this reflection we correct those sentiments of blame, which so naturally arise upon any opposition.
  • No matter how the general principle of our blame or praise may be corrected by those other principles:
    • they are not altogether efficacious
    • our passions do not often correspond entirely to the present theory.
  • Men seldom heartily love what:
    • lies far from them.
    • doesn’t contribute to their benefit.
  • It is no less rare to meet persons who can pardon another any opposition he makes to their interest, however justifiable that opposition may be by the general rules of morality.
  • We are contented with saying that reason requires such an impartial conduct.
    • But we seldom can bring ourselves to it.
    • Our passions do not readily follow our judgment’s determination.
  • This language will be easily understood, if we consider what we formerly said concerning that reason, which is able to oppose our passion;
  • and which we have found to be nothing but a general calm determination of the passions, founded on some distant view or reflection.
  • When we form our judgments of persons merely from their tendency to benefit us or our friends, we find:
    • so many contradictions to our sentiments in society and conversation
    • an uncertainty from the incessant changes of our situation
      • We seek some other standard of merit and demerit which may not admit of so great variation.
  • Being thus loosened from our first station, we cannot afterwards fix ourselves so commodiously by any means as by a sympathy with those, who have any commerce with the person we consider.
    • This is far from being as lively as when our own interest is concerned, or that of our particular friends; nor has it such an influence on our love and hatred:
  • But being equally conformable to our calm and general principles, it is said to have an equal authority over our reason, and to command our judgment and opinion.
  • We equally blame a bad action we read in history, with a bad action performed in our neighbourhood the other day.
    • Because we know from reflection, that the historical bad action would excite as strong sentiments of disapprobation as the nearby one, were it placed in the same position.
  • The second remarkable circumstance is that when a person has a character naturally beneficial to society, we:
    • esteem him as virtuous
    • are delighted with the view of his character, even though particular accidents:
      • prevent its operation
      • incapacitate him from being serviceable to his friends and country.
  • Virtue in rags is still virtue.
    • The love it procures attends a man into a dungeon or desert, where the virtue:
      • can no longer be exerted in action
      • is lost to all the world.
    • This may be esteemed as an objection to the present system.
  • Sympathy interests us in the good of mankind.
    • If sympathy were the source of our esteem for virtue, that sentiment of approbation could only take place where the virtue:
      • actually attained its end
      • was beneficial to mankind.
  • Where it fails of its end, it is only an imperfect means.
    • It can never acquire any merit from that end.
  • The goodness of an end can bestow a merit on such means alone as are complete and actually produce the end.
  • To this objection, we reply that where any object is fully fitted to attain any agreeable end, it naturally:
    • gives us pleasure
    • is esteemed beautiful
      • Even though some external circumstances is lacking to render it altogether effective.
      • It is sufficient if everything is complete in the object itself.
  • A house, that is contrived with great judgment for all the commodities of life, pleases us on that account;
    • though perhaps we are sensible, that noone will ever dwell in it.
  • A fertile soil and happy climate delight us by a reflection on the happiness which they would afford its inhabitants.
    • Though at present the country is uninhabited.
  • A man whose limbs and shape promise strength and activity, is esteemed handsome.
    • Even if he were condemned to perpetual imprisonment.
  • The imagination has a set of passions belonging to it, on which our sentiments of beauty much depend.
    • These passions are moved by degrees of liveliness and strength, which are:
      • inferior to belief
      • independent of the real existence of their objects.
  • Where a character is fully fitted to be beneficial to society, the imagination passes easily from the cause to the effect.
    • It does not consider that there are some circumstances lacking to render the cause complete.
  • General rules create a species of probability, which influences:
    • the judgment sometimes
    • the imagination always.
  • When the cause is complete and a good disposition is attended with good fortune, which renders it really beneficial to society, it:
    • gives a stronger pleasure to the spectator
    • is attended with a more lively sympathy.
  • We are more affected by it.
    • Yet we do not say that:
      • it is more virtuous, or
      • we esteem it more.
  • We know that a change of fortune may render the benevolent disposition entirely impotent.
    • We therefore separate the fortune from the disposition.
  • The same happens when we correct the different sentiments of virtue proceeding from its different distances from ourselves.
    • The passions do not always follow our corrections.
    • These corrections:
      • serve sufficiently to regulate our abstract notions
      • are alone regarded when we pronounce in general concerning the degrees of vice and virtue.
  • Critics observe that all words or sentences difficult to pronounce, are disagreeable to the ear.
    • It does not matter whether such words are heard  or read silently.
  • When I run over a book with my eye, I imagine I hear it all.
    • By the force of imagination, I become uneasy from speaking those words.
    • The uneasiness is not real.
    • but as such a composition of words has a natural tendency to produce it, this is sufficient to:
      • affect the mind with a painful sentiment
      • render the discourse harsh and disagreeable.
  • It is a similar case, where any real quality is, by accidental circumstances, rendered impotent, and is deprived of its natural influence on society.
  • On these principles, we may easily remove any contradiction between:
    • the extensive sympathy, on which our sentiments of virtue depend, and
    • that limited generosity natural to men, which justice and property suppose.
  • My sympathy with another may give me pain and disapprobation when any object, that gives him uneasiness, is presented.
    • Though, for his satisfaction, I may be unwilling to:
      • sacrifice my own interest or
      • cross any of my passions.
  • A house may displease me by being ill-contrived for its owner’s convenience.
    • Yet I may refuse to give a shilling towards rebuilding it.
  • Sentiments must touch the heart to make them control our passions.
    • But they do not need to extend beyond the imagination to make them influence our taste.
  • When a building seems clumsy and tottering to the eye, it is ugly and disagreeable.
    • Though we are fully assured of the solidity of its workmanship.
  • It is a fear which causes this sentiment of disapprobation.
    • But this fear is not the same with the fear we feel when we stand under a wall that we really think is insecure.
  • The seeming tendencies of objects affect the mind.
    • The emotions they excite are similar with those proceeding from the real consequences of objects.
      • But their feeling is different.
  • These emotions are so different in their feeling.
    • They may often be contrary, without destroying each other.
    • For example, when the enemy city’s fortifications are esteemed beautiful because of their strength.
      • Even if we wish that they were entirely destroyed.
  • The imagination:
    • adheres to the general views of things
    • distinguishes the feelings they produce from those which arise from our particular and momentary situation.
  • If we examine the panegyrics that are commonly made of great men, we shall find that most of their qualities are of two kinds:
    • those that make them perform their part in society
    • those that render them serviceable to themselves and enable them to promote their own interest.
  • Their prudence, temperance, frugality, industry, assiduity, enterprise, dexterity, are celebrated as well as their generosity and humanity.
  • If we ever give an indulgence to any quality that disables a man from making a figure in life, it is to that of indolence.
    • Indolence is not supposed to deprive one of his parts and capacity.
    • It only suspends their exercise without any inconvenience to the person himself, since it is from his own choice.
  • Yet indolence is always a fault.
    • It is a very great one if it is extreme.
  • A man’s friends do never acknowledge him to be subject to indolence to save his character in more material articles.
    • They say:
      • he could make a figure if he wanted to.
      • his understanding is sound
      • his conception quick
      • his memory tenacious
        • But he hates business and is indifferent about his fortune.
  • This a man sometimes may even make a subject of vanity, though with the air of confessing a fault.
    • Because he may think that his incapacity for business implies much more noble qualities such as:
      • a philosophical spirit
      • a fine taste
      • a delicate wit, or
      • a relish for pleasure and society.
  • But take any other case.
  • Suppose a quality, that without being an indication of any other good qualities, incapacitates a man always for business and is destructive to his interest, such as:
    • a blundering understanding
    • a wrong judgment of everything in life
    • inconstancy and irresolution, or
    • a lack of address in the management of men and business.
  • These are all imperfections in a character.
    • Many men would rather acknowledge the greatest crimes than have it suspected that they are subject to them.
  • It is very happy when we find the same phenomenon diversified by a variety of circumstances in our philosophical researches.
    • By discovering what is common among them, we can better assure ourselves of the truth of any hypothesis we use to explain it.
  • If only those qualities that were beneficial to society were esteemed as virtue, the foregoing explanation of the moral sense should still be received on sufficient evidence.
    • But this evidence must grow on us when we find other kinds of virtue which will only admit of an explanation from that hypothesis.
  • Here is a man not remarkably defective in his social qualities.
    • His main social quality is his dexterity in business.
      • By this, he has:
        • extricated himself from the greatest difficulties
        • conducted the most delicate affairs with a singular address and prudence.
    • I find an esteem for him immediately to arise in me:
      • I am satisfied with his company.
      • Before I have any further acquaintance with him, I would rather do him a service than another person with the same character but deficient in business.
    • In this case, the qualities that please me are all useful to the person.
      • It has a tendency to promote his interest and satisfaction.
      • They are only regarded as means to an end.
      • They please me in proportion to their fitness for that end.
        • The end, therefore, must be agreeable to me.
        • But what makes the end agreeable?
  • The person is a stranger.
    • I am not interested in him.
    • I do not have any obligation to him.
    • His happiness does not concern me, farther than the happiness of every human and every sensible creature.
      • That is, it affects me only by sympathy.
  • From sympathy, I enter so deeply into his happiness whenever I discover it, whether as a cause or effect.
    • It gives me a sensible emotion.
  • The appearance of qualities that promote sympathy:
    • have an agreeable effect on my imagination
    • command my love and esteem.
  • This theory may explain why the same qualities, in all cases, produce:
    • pride and love
    • humility and hatred.
  • The same man is always virtuous or vicious, accomplished or despicable to others, who is so to himself.
    • A person, in whom we discover any passion or habit, which originally is only incommodious to himself, becomes always disagreeable to us, merely on its account.
    • On the other hand, one whose character is only dangerous and disagreeable to others, can never be satisfied with himself, as long as he is sensible of that disadvantage.
  • This is observable with regard to characters and manners.
    • It may also be remarked even in the most minute circumstances.
  • A violent cough in another gives us uneasiness.
    • Though in itself, it does not affect us.
  • A man will be mortified if you tell him he has a stinking breath.
    • Though it is evidently no annoyance to himself.
  • Our fancy easily changes its situation.
    • It surveys ourselves as we appear to others, or considers others as they feel themselves.
    • Through this, we enter into sentiments which:
      • do not belong to us
      • only sympathy is able to interest us.
        • We sometimes carry this sympathy so far.
          • We are even displeased with a quality commodious to us, merely because it:
            • displeases others
            • makes us disagreeable in their eyes
          • Though perhaps we never can have any interest in rendering ourselves agreeable to them.
  • Many systems of morality have been advanced by philosophers in all ages.
    • If they are strictly examined, they may be reduced to two, which alone merit our attention.
  • Moral good and evil are distinguished by our sentiments, not by reason.
    • But these sentiments may arise from:
      • the mere species or appearance of characters and passions, or
      • reflections on their tendency to the happiness of:
        • mankind
        • particular persons.
    • I think both these causes are intermixed in our judgments of morals in the same  way as they are intermixed in our decisions on external beauty.
    • I also think that reflections on the tendencies of actions:
      • have by far the greatest influence
      • determine all the great lines of our duty.
  • There are, however, instances, in cases of less moment, wherein this immediate taste or sentiment produces our approbation.
  • Wit, and a certain easy and disengaged behaviour, are qualities immediately agreeable to others.
    • These command their love and esteem.
  • Some of these qualities produce satisfaction in others by particular original principles of human nature, which cannot be accounted for.
    • Others may be resolved into principles, which are more general.
  • This will best appear upon a particular enquiry.
  • Some qualities acquire their merit from their being immediately agreeable to others, without any tendency to public interest.
  • so some are denominated virtuous from their being immediately agreeable to the person himself, who possesses them.
  • Each of the passions and operations of the mind has a particular feeling which must be agreeable or disagreeable.
    • The first is virtuous, the second vicious.
    • This feeling constitutes the very nature of the passion.
      • Therefore it does not need to be accounted for.
  • The distinction of vice and virtue may seem to flow directly from the immediate pleasure or uneasiness, which particular qualities cause to ourselves or others.
    • It also depends on the principle of sympathy so often insisted on.
  • We approve of a person who has qualities agreeable to those he has commerce with.
    • Though perhaps we ourselves never reaped any pleasure from them.
  • We also approve of one who has qualities agreeable to himself.
    • Though they are of no service to anyone.
  • To account for this, we must turn to the foregoing principles.
  • As a general review of the present hypothesis:
    • Every quality of the mind is called:
      • virtuous if it gives pleasure
      • vicious if it gives pain.
    • This pleasure and pain may arise from four different sources.
    • We reap a pleasure from the view of a character naturally:
      • fitted to be useful to others or to the person himself, or
      • agreeable to others or to the person himself.
  • One may be surprised that amidst all these interests and pleasures, we should forget our own.
  • Every person’s pleasure and interest are different.
    • It is impossible men could ever agree in their sentiments and judgments, unless they chose some common point of view from which they might:
      • survey their object
      • cause it to appear the same to all of them.
  • Now in judging of characters, the only interest or pleasure, which appears the same to every spectator, is that of the person himself, whose character is examined; or that of persons connected with him.
    • Such interests and pleasures touch us more faintly than our own.
      • Yet being more constant and universal, they:
        • counter-balance the latter even in practice
        • are alone admitted in speculation as the standard of virtue and morality.
          • They alone produce that feeling or sentiment which moral distinctions depend on.
  • The good or ill desert of virtue or vice is an evident consequence of the sentiments of pleasure or uneasiness.
    • These sentiments produce love or hatred.
    • Love or hatred, by the original constitution of human passion, is attended with benevolence or anger.
    • that is, with a desire of making happy the person we love, and miserable the person we hate.
    • We have treated of this more fully on another occasion.

Words: 5540

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