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section vi: How far a Regard to the Deity is necessary to make an Action virtuous - Francis Hutcheson, An Essay on the Nature and Conduct of the Passions and Affections, with Illustrations on the Moral Sense 
An Essay on the Nature and Conduct of the Passions and Affections, with Illustrations on the Moral Sense, ed. Aaron Garrett (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2002).
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How far a Regard to the Deity is necessary to make an Action virtuous
[301/307] I. Some do imagine, that “to make an Action virtuous, it is necessary that the Agent should have previously known his Action to be acceptable to theDeity, and have undertaken it chiefly with design to please or obey him. We have not, say they, reason to imagine a malicious Intention in many of the worst Actions: the very want of good Affections in their just Degree, must constitute moral Evil. If so, then the moral Evil in the want of Love or Gratitude, must increase in proportion to the Causes of Love or Gratitude in the Object: by the Causes of Love, they mean those Qualities in the Object upon Observation of which Love or Gratitude do arise in every good Temper. Now the Causes of Love toward the Deity are infinite; therefore the want of the highest possible Degree of Love to him, must be infinitely evil.—To be excited more by smaller  Motives or Causes  than by greater; to love those who are less lovely, while we neglect him in whom are infinite Causes of Love, must argue great Perverseness of Affections. But the Causes of Love in the Deity, his infinite Goodness toward all, and even toward our selves, from whence springs all the Happiness of our Lives, are infinitely above any Causes of Love to be found in Creatures: Therefore to act from Love to them without Intention to please God, must be infinitely evil.”
If this Reasoning be just, the best of Men are infinitely evil. The Distinction between habitual and actual Intention will not remove the Difficulty, since these Arguments require actual Intention. An habitual Intention is not a present act of Love to the Deity, influencing our Actions more than actual Love to Creatures, which this Argument requires; but a prior general Resolution not at present repeated.
To find what is just on this Subject, we may premise some Propositions of which Men must convince themselves by Reflection.
How we compute the Goodness of Temper.II.There is in Mankind such a Disposition naturally, that they desire the Happiness of any known Sensitive Nature,  when it is not inconsistent with something more  strongly desired; so that were there no Oppositions of Interest either private or publick, and sufficient Power, we would confer upon every Being the highest Happiness which it could receive.
But our Understanding and Power are limited, so that we cannot know many other Natures, nor is our utmost Power capable of promoting the Happiness of many: our Actions are therefore influenced by some stronger Affections than this general Benevolence. There are certain Qualities found in some Beings more than in others, which excite stronger Degrees of Good‐will, and determine our Attention to their Interests, while that of others is neglected. The Ties of Blood, Benefits conferredupon us, and the Observation of Virtue in others, raise much more vigorus Affections, than that general Benevolence which we may have toward all. These Qualities or Relations we may call the Causes of Love.
However these Affections are very different from the general Benevolence toward all, yet it is very probable, that there is a Regularity or Proportion observed in the Constitution of our Nature; so that, abstracting from some acquired Habits, or  Associations of Ideas, and from the more sudden Emotions of some particular Passions, that Temper  which has the most lively Gratitude, or is the most susceptive of Friendship with virtuous Characters, would also have the strongest general Benevolence toward indifferent Persons: And on the contrary, where there is the weakest general Benevolence, there we could expect the least Gratitude, and the least Friendship, or Love toward the Virtuous. If this Proportion be observed, then, if we express all these Desires of the good of others by the Name of Benevolence, we may denote the several Degrees in which Men possess these several kind Dispositions by the Goodness of the Temper: And the Degrees of Desire toward the Happiness of any Person, we may call the Quantity of Love toward him. Then,
The Quantity of Love toward any Person is in a compound Proportion of the apprehended Causes of Love in him, and of the Goodness of Temper in the Observer. Or L = C × G.55
When the Causes of Love in two Objects are apprehended equal, the Love toward either in different Persons is as the Goodness of Temper; or L = G × I.
 When the Goodness of Temper is the same or equal, the Love toward any Objects will be as the Causes; or L = C × I.
The Goodness of any Temper is therefore as the Quantity of Love, divided by the apprehended Causes, or G = L/C. And since we  cannot apprehend any Goodness in having the Degree of Love above the Proportion of its Causes, the most virtuous Temper is that in which the Love equals its Causes, which may therefore be expressed by Unity.*
Hence it follows, that if there were any Nature incomparably more excellent than any of our Fellow‐Creatures, from whom also we our selves, and all others had received the greatest Benefits; there would be less Virtue in any small Degree of Desire of his Happiness, than in a like Degree of Love toward our Fellow‐Creatures. But not loving such a Being, or having a smaller Degree of Love, must evidence a much greater Defect in Virtue, than a like want of Love toward our Fellow‐Creature. For the Causes of Love being [306 ] very great, unless the Love be also very great, the Quotient which expresses the Goodness of Temper will be very much below Unity.
The general Rules applied to the Love of God.III.To apply this to the Deity is very obvious. Our Affections toward him arise in the same manner as toward our Fellows, in  proportion to our Attention to the Causes of Love in him, and the Goodness of our Temper. The Reflection on his Goodness raises Approbation and Complacence, his Benefits raise Gratitude, and both occasion Good‐will or Benevolence. Some imagine, that “his Happiness is wholly detached from all Events in this World, absolute, and unvaried in himself.” And yet the same Inclination of Mind might remain in us, tho we had this Opinion. When the Happiness of a Friendis in Suspense, we desire it; when he has obtained all that which we desired, the same Inclination of Mindseems to remain toward him, only without that Uneasiness accompanying Desire of an uncertain Object: Thus Gravity may be said to be the same when a Body is resting on a fixed Base, as when it caused descent.
Upon this Scheme of the divine Happiness, it is not easy to account how our Love to him could excite us to promote the Happiness of our Fellows. Our frequent Contemplation of such an amiable excellent  Nature, might indeed tend to reform or improve our Temper.
If we imagine that the Deity has such Perceptions of Approbation or Dislike toward  Actions as we have our selves, then indeed our Love to him would directly excite us to do whatever he approves, and shun what he condemns. We can scarce avoid imagining, that the frequent recurring of Events disapproved, must be uneasy to any Nature, and that the observing approved Actions must be delightful.
If we imagine that the divine Happiness, or any part of it is connected with the Happiness of his Creatures, so that their Happiness is constituted the Occasion of his; then indeed our Love to theDeity will directly excite us to all manner of beneficent Actions. ’Tis true, many good Men deny these two last Opinions, yet it is probable, when their Minds are diverted from Speculations, by Opportunities of Action, there recurs some Imagination of Offence, Uneasiness, and Resentment in the Deity, upon observing evil Actions; of Delight and Joy in beholding good Actions; of Sorrow upon observing the Misery of his Creatures, and Joy upon seeing them happy: So that by their Love to theDeity they are influenced to beneficent Actions, notwithstanding their  speculative Opinions. In our Conceptions of the Deity, we are continually led to imagine a Resemblance to what we feel in our selves.
 Whoever maintains these Opinions of the Deity to be true, must also suppose “a particular Determination of all Events in the Universe;” otherwise this part of the divine Happiness is made precarious and uncertain, depending upon the undetermined Will of Creatures.
The Diversity of Opinions concerning the divine Happiness, may lead Men into different ways of accounting for the Influence which the Love ofGod may have upon our Actions toward our Fellows: But the Affections toward the Deity would be much the same upon both Schemes. Where there were the same just Apprehensions of the divine Goodness in two Persons, the Love to the Deity in both would be proportioned to the Goodness of Temper. Tho the highest possible Degree of Love to a perfectly good Deity, would evidence no more Virtue of Temper, than a proportioned Love to Creatures; yet the having only smaller Degrees of Love to the Deity, would evidence a greater Defect of Goodness in the Temper, than any want of Affection toward Creatures.
 Here it must be remembred, that in arguing concerning the Goodness of Temper  from the Degree of Love directly, and the Causes of Love inversly, actual Attention to the Causes of Love is supposed in the Person. For ’tis plain, that in the best Temper no one Affection or Idea can always continue present, and there can be no Affection present to the Mind, toward any Object, while the Idea of it is not present. The bare Absence therefore of Affection, while the Mind is employed upon a different Object, can argue no evil in the Temper, farther than want of Attention may argue want of Affection. In like manner, in the best Temper, there can be no Love toward an Object unknown: The want therefore of Love to an Object unknown, can argue no evil in the Temper, farther than Ignorance may argue want of Affection. It is certain indeed, that he who knows that there is a good Deity, and actually thinks of him, and of all his Benefits, yet has not the strongest Love and Gratitude toward him, must have a Temper void of all Goodness; but it will not follow, that that Mind is void of Goodness which is not always thinking of the Deity, or actually loving him, or even does not know him. How far the want of Attention to the Deity, and Ignorance of him, may argue an evil Temper,  must be shown from different Topicks, to be considered hereafter.
What Degrees of Affection necessary to Innocence. IV. But previously to these Inquiries we must consider “what Degrees or Kinds of Affection are necessary to obtain the simple Approbation of Innocence.” ’Tis plain, the bare Absence of all Malice is not enough. We may have the general Benevolence toward a mere sensitive Nature, which had no other desire but Self‐Love; but we can apprehend no moral Goodness in such a Being: Nay, ’tis not every small Degree of kind Affections which we approve. There must be some proportion of kind Affections to the other Faculties in any Nature, particularly to its Understanding and active Powers to obtain Approbation. Some Brutes evidence small Degrees of Good‐will, which make them be approvedin their Kind; but the same Degrees would not be approved in a Man. There is an higher Degree expected in Mankind, to which, if they do not come up, we do not account them innocent. It is not easy to fix precisely that Degree which we approve as innocent by our moral Sense. Every kind Affection, if it be considered only with relation to its own Object, is indeed approved; such as natural Affection, Gratitude, Pity, Friendship: And yet when we take a more extensive View of the Tendency of  some Actions proceeding even from these Affections,  we may often condemn these Actions when they are apprehended as pernicious to larger Systems of Mankind. In the same manner we often condemn Actions done from Love to a particular Country, when they appear to be pernicious to Mankindin general. In like manner, SelfPreservation and pursuing private Advantage abstractly considered, is innocent: But when it is apprehended as very pernicious in any case to the Safety of others, it is condemned.
Mankind are capable of large extensive Ideas of great Societies. And it is expected of them, that their general Benevolence should continually direct and limit, not only their selfish Affections, but even their nearer Attachments to others: that their Desire of publick Good, and Aversion to publick Misery, should overcome at least their Desire of positive private Advantages, either to themselves or their particular Favourites; so as to make them abstain from any Action which would be positively pernicious or hurtful to Mankind, however beneficial it might be to themselves, or their Favourites. To undergo positive Evil for the sake of positive Goodto others, seems some degree of Virtue above Innocence, which we do not universally expect: But to reject positive attainable [312/318] good, either for our selves or our particular Favourites, rather than occasion any considerable Misery to others, is requisite to obtain the Approbation of Innocence. The want of this Degree we positively condemn as evil; and an Agent must rise above it by positive Services to Mankind, with some Trouble and Expence to himself, before we approve him as virtuous. We seem indeed universally to expect from all Men those good Offices which give the Agent no trouble or expence: Whoever refuses them is below Innocence. But we do not positively condemn those as evil, who will not sacrifice their private Interest to the Advancement of the positive Goodof others, unless the private Interest be very small, and the publick Good very great.
But as the Desire of positive private Goodis weaker than Aversion to private Evil, or Pain; so our Desire of the positive Good of others, is weaker than our Aversion to their Misery: It seems at least requisite to  Innocence, that the stronger publick Affection, viz. our Aversion to the Misery of others, should surmount the weaker private Affection, the Desire of positive private Good; so that no prospect of  Good to our selves, should engage us to that which would occasion Misery to others. It is in like manner requisite to Innocence, that our Aversion to the Misery of greater or equal Systems, should surmount our Desire of the positive Goodof these to which we are more particularly attached.
How far it may be necessary to Innocence to submit to smaller private Pains to prevent the greater Sufferings of others, or to promote some great positive Advantages; or how far the Happiness of private Systems should be neglected for the Happiness of the greater, in order to obtain the Approbation of Innocence, it is perhaps impossible precisely to determine, or to fix any general Rules; nor indeed is it necessary. Our business is not to find out “at how cheap a Rate we can purchase Innocence, but to know what is most noble, generous and virtuous in Life.” This we know consists in sacrificing all positive Interests, and bearing all private Evils for the publick Good: And in submitting also the Interests of all smaller Systems to the Interests of the whole: Without any other Exception or Reserve than this, that every Man may look upon himself as a Part of this System, and consequently not sacrifice an important private Interest to a  less important Interest of others. We may find the same sort of Difficulty about all our other Senses, in determining precisely what Objects are indifferent,  or where Pleasure ends, and Disgust begins, tho the positive Degrees of the grateful and ungrateful are easily distinguished.
It is also very difficult to fix any precise Degree of Affection toward the Deity, which should be barely requisite to Innocence. Only in general we must disapprove that Temper, which, upon Apprehension of the perfect Goodness of the Deity, and of his innumerable Benefits to Mankind, has not stronger Affections of Love and Gratitude toward him, than those toward any other Being. Such Affections would necessarily raise frequent Attention and Consideration of our Actions; and would engage us, if we apprehended any of them to be offensive to him, or contrary to that Scheme of Events in which we apprehended the Deity to delight, to avoid them with a more firm Resolution than what we had in any other Affairs. Positive Virtue toward the Deity must go farther than a resolute abstaining from Offence, by engaging us with the greatest Vigor, to do whatever we apprehend as positively pleasing, or conducive to those Ends in which we apprehend the Deity delights. It is  scarce conceivable that any good Temper can want such Affections toward the Deity, when once he is known, as were above supposed necessary to Innocence. Nor  can we imagine positive Degrees of Goodness of Temper above Innocence, where Affections toward the Deity do not arise proportionably.
What is here said relates only to the Apprehensions of our moral Sense, and not to those Degrees of Virtue which the Deity may require by Revelation: And every one’s Heart may inform him, whether or no he does not approve, at least as innocent, those who omit many good Offices which they might possibly have done, provided they do a great deal of good; those who carefully abstain from every apprehended Offence toward the Deity, tho they might possibly be more frequent in Acts of Devotion. ’Tis true indeed, the Omission of what we know to be required is positively evil: so that by a Revelation we may be obliged to farther Services than were requisite previously to it, which we could not innocently omit, after this Revelation is known: But we are here only considering our moral Sense.
How far Ignorance of Deity is Evil.V. Now let us inquire how far simple Ignorance of a Deity, or unaffected Atheism does evidence an evil Disposition, or Defect of good Affections below Innocence.
1. Affections arising upon apparent Causes, or present Opinions, tho false, if  they be such as would arise in the best Temper, were these Opinions true, cannot argue any present want of Goodness in any Temper, of themselves: the Opinions indeed may often argue a want of Goodness at the time they were formed: But to a benevolent Temper there is no Cause of Malice, or Desire of the Misery or Non‐existence of any Being for itself. There may be Causes of Dislike, and Desire of Misery or Non‐existence, as the Means of greater Good, or of lessening Evil.
2. No Object which is entirely unknown, or of which we have no Idea, can raise Affection in the best Temper; consequently want of Affection to an unknown Object evidences no evil. This would be the Case of those who never heard even the Report of aDeity, if ever there were any such: Or who never heard of any Fellow‐Creatures, if one may make a Supposition like to that made by Cicero.* And this is perhaps the Case, as to the Deity, of any unfortunate Children, who may have some  little Use of Reason, before they are instructed in any Religion.
If there really were an Innate Idea of a Deity so imprinted, that no Person could  be without it; or if we are so disposed, as necessarily to receive this Idea, as soon as we can be called moral Agents: then no Ignorance of a Deity can be innocent; all Atheism must be affected, or an Opinion formed, either thro’ evil Affection, or want of good Affection below Innocence. But if the Idea of aDeity be neither imprinted, nor offer itself even previously to any Reflection, nor be universally excited by Tradition, the bare Want of it, where there has been no Tradition or Reflection, cannot be called criminal upon any Scheme. Those who make Virtue and Vice relative to a Law, may say, “Men are required to reflect, and thence to know a Deity. “But they must allow Promulgation necessary, before Disobedience to a Law can be criminal. Now previously to Reflection it is supposed impossible for the Agent to know the Legislator, or to know the Law requiring him to reflect, therefore this Law requiring him to reflect, was not antecedently to his Reflection published to him.
The Case of human Laws, the Ignorance of which does not excuse, is not parallel  to this. No Person under any Civil Government can be supposed ignorant that there are Laws made for the whole State. But in the present Supposition, Men antecedently to Reflection may be ignorant of the Deity, or that there are Laws of Nature.  If any Subject could thus be unapprized, that he lived under Civil Government, he should not be accounted Compos Mentis. The Supposition indeed in both Cases is perhaps wholly imaginary; at least as to Persons above Childhood. One can scarce imagine that ever any Person was wholly unapprized of a governing Mind, and of a Right and Wrong in Morals. Whether this is to be ascribed to innate Ideas, to universal Tradition, or to some necessary Determination in our Nature, to imagine a designing Cause of the beautiful Objects which occur to us, with a moral Sense, let the curious inquire.
3. Suppose an Idea formed in a benevolent Mind, of other sensitive Natures, Desire of their Existence and Happiness would arise.
4. A good Temper would incline any one to wish, that other Natures were benevolent, or morally Good, since this is the chief Happiness.
 5. A good Temper would desire that the Administration of Nature were by a benevolent or good Mind.
6. All Desire of any Event or Circumstance inclines any Mind to search into the Truth of that Event or Circumstance,  by all the Evidence within its power to obtain.
7. Where there is such Desire, and sufficiently obvious Evidence given in proportion to the Sagacity of the desiring Mind, it will come to the Knowledge of the Truth, if its Desire be strong.
Now from these Propositions we may deduce the following Corollaries.
1. Supposing the Idea of a good Deity once apprehended, or excited either by Report, or the slightest Reflection; if there be objective Evidence in Nature proportioned to the Capacity of the Inquirer, for the Existence of a good Deity,Atheism directly argues want of good Affection below Innocence.
2. If there be only the simple Tradition or Presumption of a governing Mind once raised; and if there be Evidence as  before for his Goodness, to conclude the Deityevil or malicious, must argue want of good Affection as before.
3. Suppose the Idea of an evilDeity once excited, and some Presumptions for his Malice from Tradition, or slight Reflection upon particular Evils in Nature; to rest in this Opinion without Inquiry,  would argue want of good Affection; to desire to reject this Opinion, or confute it by contrary Evidence, would argue good Affection: Suppose such contrary Evidences obvious enough in Nature to one who inquired as diligently about it as about his own Interest; to continue in the false Opinion cannot be innocent.
How Ignorance in human Affairs evidences a bad Temper.VI. In like manner concerning our Fellow‐Creatures, who are actually known to us.
4. To imagine Fellow‐Creatures morally Good, either according to Evidence upon Inquiry, or even by a rash Opinion, evidences good Affection.
5. Imagining them Evil contrary to obvious Evidence, argues want of good Affection below Innocence.
6. Retaining and inculcating an Opinion either of the Causes of Love in  others, or of the Causes of Aversion, induces an Habit; and makes the Temper prone to the Affection often raised. Opinion of Goodness in the Deity and our Fellows, increases good Affection, and improves the Temper: Contrary Opinion of either, by raising frequent Aversions, weakens good Affection, and impairs the Temper.
 This may shew how cautious Men ought to be in passing Sentence upon the Impiety of their Fellows, or representing them as wicked and profane, or hateful to the Deity, and justly given over to eternal Misery: We may see also what a wise Mark it is to know the true Church by, that “it pronounces Damnation on all others.” Which is one of the Characters of the Romish Church, by which it is often recommended as the safest for Christians to live in.
The same Propositions may be applied to our Opinions concerning the natural Tendencies of Actions. Where the Evidence is obvious as before, good Affection will produce true Opinions, and false Opinions often argue want of good Affection below Innocence. Thus, tho in Assent or Dissent of themselves, there can neither be Virtue nor Vice, yet they may be Evidences of either in the Agent, as well as his external Motions. ’Tis not possible indeed for Men to determine precisely in many cases the Quantity of Evidence, and its proportion to the Sagacity of the Observer, which will argue Guilt in him, who contrary to it, forms a false Opinion. But Men are no better judges of the Degrees of Virtue  and Vice in external Actions. This therefore will not prove that all false Opinions or Errors are innocent, more than external Actions: The Searcher of Hearts can judge exactly of both. Human Punishments are only Methods of Self‐Defence; in which the Degrees of Guilt are not the proper Measure, but the Necessity of restraining Actions for the Safety of the Publick.
How want of Attention evidences a bad Temper.VII. It is next to be considered, how far want of Attention to the Deity can argue want of good Affections, in any Agent, to whom he is known.
Every good Temper will have strong Affections to a good Deity, and where there is strong Affection there will be frequent Reflection upon the Object beloved, Desire of pleasing, and Caution of offence. In like manner every Person of good Temper, who has had the Knowledge of a  Country, a System, a Species, will consider how far these great Societies may be affected by his Actions, with such Attention as he uses in his own Affairs; and will abstain from what is injurious to them.
But an injurious Action which appeared to the Agent not only pernicious to his Fellows, or to particular Persons, but offensive to theDeity, and pernicious to a System, is much more vicious than when the Agent did not reflect upon the Deity, or a Community.
Nothing in this Scheme supersedes the Duty of Love to the Deity, and general Benevolence. VIII. We must not hence imagine, that in order to produce greater Virtue in our selves, we should regard the Deity no farther, then merely to abstain from Offences. Were it our sole Intention in beneficent Actions, only to obtain the private Pleasure of Self‐Approbation for the Degree of our Virtue, this might seem the proper Means of having great Virtue with the least Expence. But if the real Intention, which constitutes an Action virtuous, be the promoting publick Good; then voluntarily to reject the Consideration of any Motive which would increase the Moment of publick Good, or would make us more vigorous and stedfast in Virtue, must argue want of good Affection. In any given Moment of Beneficence, the unaffected Want of Regard to the Deity, or to private Interest, does really argue greater Virtue. But the retaining these Motives with a View to increase the Moment of publick Good in our Actions, if they really do so, argues Virtue equal to, or greater than that in the former Case: And the affected Neglect of these Motives, that so we may acquit our selves virtuously with the least Expence to our selves, or with the least Moment of publick Good, must evidence want of good Affections, and base Trick and Artifice to impose upon  Observers, or our own Hearts. Therefore
Since Gratitude to the Deity, and even Consideration of private Interest, tend to increase the Moment of our Beneficence, and to strengthen good Affections, the voluntary Retaining them with this View evidences Virtue, and affecting to neglect them evidences Vice.* And yet,
 If the Moment produced by the Conjunction of these Motives, be not greater than that produced with unaffected Neglect of these Motives, from particular good  Affection, there is less Virtue in the former than in the latter.
Men may use Names as they please, and may chuse to call nothing Virtue but “what is intended chiefly to evidence Affection of one kind or other toward the Deity.” Writers on this Scheme are not well agreed about what this virtuous Intention is; whether only to evidence Submission, or Submission and Love, or to obtain the divine Benevolence, and private Happiness to the Agent, or to give Pleasure to the Deity. But let them not assert, against universal Experience, that we approve no Actions which are not thus intended toward the Deity. ’Tis plain, a generous compassionate Heart, which, at first view of the Distress of another, flies impatiently to his Relief, or spares no Expence to accomplish it, meets with strong Approbation from every Observer who has not perverted his Sense of Life by School‐Divinity, or Philosophy. ’Tis to be suspected, that some Vanity must be at the Bottom of these Notions, which place Virtue in some Nicety, which active Tempers, have not leisure to apprehend, and only the Recluse Student can attain to.
 To be led by a weaker Motive, where a stronger is alike present to the Mind, to love a Creature more than God, or to have stronger Desires of doing what is grateful to Creatures than to God, when we equally attend to both, would certainly argue some Perversion of our Affections; or to study the particular Goodof one, more than that of a System, when we reflected on both: But as no finite Mindcan retain at once a  Multiplicity of Objects, so it cannot always retain any one Object. When a Person therefore not thinking at present of the Deity, or of a Community or System, does a beneficent Action from particular Love, he evidences Goodness of Temper. The bare Absence of the Idea of a Deity, or of Affections to him, can evidence no evil; otherways it would be a Crime to fall asleep, or to think of any thing else: If the bare Absence of this Idea be no evil, the Presence of kind Affections to FellowCreatures cannot be evil. If indeed our Love to the Deity excited to any Action, and at the same time Love to a Creature excited to the Omission of it, or to a contrary Action, we must be very criminal if the former do not prevail; yet this will not argue all Actions to be evil in which pleasing theDeity,  is not directly and chiefly intended. Nay, that Temper must really be very deficient in Goodness, which needs to excite it to any good Office, to recal the Thoughts of a Deity, or a Community, or a System. The frequent recalling these Thoughts, indeed, does strengthen all good Affections, and increases the Moment of Beneficence to be expected from any Temper; and with this View frequently to recal such Thoughts, must be one of the best Helps to Virtue, and evidence high Degrees of it. Nay, one cannot call that Temper entire and complete, which has not the strongest Affection toward the greatest Benefactor, and the most worthy Object.
Beings of such Degrees of Knowledge, and such Extent of Thought, as Mankind are not only capable of, but generally obtain, when nothing interrupts their Inquiries, must naturally arise to the Knowledge of theDeity, if their Temper be good. They must form general Conceptions of the whole, and see the Order, Wisdom, and Goodness in the Administration of Nature in some Degree. The Knowledge and Love of the Deity, the universalMind, is as natural a Perfection to such a Being as Man, as any Accomplishment to which we arrive by  cultivating our natural Dispositions; nor is that Mind come to the proper State and Vigor of its kind, where Religion is not the main Exercise and Delight.
Whether the Deity is the sole proper Object of Love.IX. There is one very subtle Argument on this Subject. Some alledge, “That  since the Deity is really the Cause of all the Good in the Universe, even of all the Virtue, or good Affection in Creatures, which are the seeming Causes of Love toward them, it must argue strange Perversion of Temper to love those in whom there is no Cause of Love, or who are (as they affect to speak) nothing, or Emptiness of all Goodness. TheDeity alone is amiable, in whom there is infinite Fulness of every amiable Quality. The Deity, say they, not without some Reason, is the Cause of every pleasant Sensation, which he immediately excites according to a general Law, upon the Occasion of Motions arising in our Bodies; that likewise he gave us that general Inclination, which we modify into all our different Affections;God therefore, say they, is alone lovely. Other Things are not to be beloved, but only the Goodness of God appearing in them; nay some do make the loving of them, without considering God as displaying  his Goodness in them, to be infinitely evil.”
In answer to this it must be owned, that “God’s being the Cause of all the Good in the Universe, will no doubt raise the highest Love to him in a good Temper, when it reflects upon it.”
 But 1st, had all Men this Apprehension that “there was no good in any Creature,” they really would not love them at all. But Men generally imagine with very good ground, that there are good Beings distinct from God, tho produced by him: And whether this Opinion be true or false, it evidences no evil.
2. As upon this Scheme God is the Cause of all pleasant Sensation, so is he the Cause of all Pain: He is, according to them, the Cause of that Inclination which we modify into evil Affection, as well as into good. If then we are to love God only, for what we call good Affection in Creatures, and not the Creatures themselves, we must also only love God upon observing evil Affections in Creatures, and have no Aversion to the basest Temper, since God gave the general Inclination alike in both Cases.
 3. If we may suppose real Beings distinct from God, that their Affections are not God’s Affections, if God is not the only Lover and Hater, if our moral Sense is determined to approve kind Affections, and our Love or Benevolence must arise toward what we approve; or if we find an Instinct to desire the Happiness of every sensitive  Nature, we cannot avoid loving Creatures, and we must approve any kind Affections observed in others toward their Fellows. ’Tis true, we must approve the highest Affections toward the Deity, and condemn, as a Deficiency of just Affections toward God any Degree which is not superior to our other Affections. But still, Affections towards Creatures, if they be distinct Natures from God, must be approved.
4. If to make a Mind virtuous, or even innocent, it be necessary that it should have such sublime Speculations of God, as the τὸ πα̑ν in the Intellectual active System (if we call one Agent in many Passive Organs an active System) then God has placed the Bulk of Mankind in an absolute Incapacity of Virtue, and inclined them perpetually to infinite Evil, by their very Instincts and natural Affections. Does the parental Affection direct  a Man to love the Deity, or his Children? Is it the Divinity, to which our Pity or Compassion is directed? Is God the Object of Humanity? Is it a Design to support the Divinity, which we call Generosity or Liberality? Upon Receipt of a Benefit, does our Nature suggest only Gratitude towardGod? Affections toward the Deity may indeed often accompany Affections toward Creatures, and do so in a virtuous Temper: but  these are distinct Affections. This Notion of making all virtuous Affections to be only directed toward God, is not suggested to Men by any thing in their Nature, but arises from the long subtle Reasonings of Men at leisure, and unemployed in the natural Affairs of Life.
5. If there be no Virtue or Cause of Love in Creatures, it is vain for them to debate wherein their Virtue consists, whether in regard toward the Deity, or in any thing else, since they are supposed to have none at all.
To conclude this Subject. It seems probable, that however we must look upon that Temper as exceedingly imperfect, inconstant, and partial, in which Gratitude toward the universal Benefactor, Admiration and Love of the supreme  original Beauty, Perfection and Goodness, are not the strongest and most prevalent Affections; yet particular Actions may be innocent, nay virtuous, where there is no actual Intention of pleasing the Deity, influencing the Agent.
Treatise i: An Essay on the Nature and Conduct of the Passions
5/15–16Illustrations of … are so,] Illustrations of this Point, that we have a moral Sense, and a Sense of Honour, by which we discern an immediate Good in Virtue and Honour, not referred to any further Enjoyment, are not much insisted on since they are already laid down
5/24tho Seven or Ten might] though a larger Number might perhaps
5/26Perceptions,] Perceptions immediately
5/34I … do,] Mr. Locke declares expressly, calling it internal Sensation, that [See John Locke, Essay, II. 1 §4. Locke is interested in giving an account of how and from where experience furnishes us with ideas, not with using the idea of reflection as a basis for multiplying senses which is more a characteristic of Shaftesbury.]
6/2natural … as] natural and necessary and ultimate, without reference to any other, as
6/14–7/4The principal Objections … complete the Scheme] The Author takes nothing in bad part from any of his Adversaries, except that Outcry which one or two of them made against these Principles as opposite to Christianity, though it be so well known that they have been and are espoused by many of the most zealous Christians. There are Answers interspersed in the later Editions to these Objections, to avoid the disagreeable Work of Replying or Remarking, in which one is not generally upon his Guard [xiii] sufficiently to avoid Cavils and offensive Expressions.
7/10to establish.] to establish in Treat. IV.
7/22some other natural] some of the natural
8/6–8every one … to approve] om.
8/9tend] are intended
8/9–10in the … Agent] om.
8/10–14it can … Affections.” ] our Power can reach, is approved as the highest Virtue; and that the universal calm Good‐will or Benevolence, where it is the leading Affection of the Soul, so as to limit or restrain all other Affections, Appetites, or Passions, is the Temper which we esteem in the highest Degree, according to the natural Constitution of our Soul: And withal, that we in a lower Degree approve every particular kind Affection or Passion, which is not inconsistent with these higher and nobler Dispositions.”
8/15this to be] this calm extensive Affection to be
9/3Actions, are,] Actions,
9/3Natural,] Natural, yet are
9/4yet if] but if
9/5–6tend to the greater] tend to the
9/7whereas a … find his] while yet one may better find his private
9/12–15I hope … Gentlemen,] Gentlemen,
9/20Δύναμις αγαθοειδὴς] Φιλάνθρωπον και αγαθοειδῃς
10/1Journals,] Journals in 1728,
10/2them bore] them in those weekly Papers bore
10/6–12I have … I have] He was soon after informed, that his Death disappointed the Author’s great Expectations from so ingenious a Correspondent. The Objections proposed in the first Section of Treatise IV, are not always those of Philaretus, though the Author endeavoured to leave no Objections of his unanswered; but he also interspersed whatever Objections occurred in Conversation on these Subjects; and has not used any Expressions inconsistent with the high Regard he has
15/12several Senses] several Powers of Perception or Senses
15/13–16There seems … or Pain.] It is by some Power of Perception, or Sense, that we first receive the Ideas of these Objects we are conversant with, or by some Reasoning upon these perceived Objects of Sense. By Sensation we not only receive the Image or Representation, but some Feelings of Pleasure or Pain; nay sometimes the sole Perception is that of Pleasure or Pain, as in Smells, and the Feelings of Hunger and Thirst.
15/18–16/1Extension … one of] Duration or Time,
16/3Idea, or Assemblage] Idea, or Image, or Assemblage
16/13is ridiculously] seems very
16/25Ideas, as] Ideas, and yet may also accompany any other Ideas, as
16/25Sensations.] Sensations. Brutes, when several Objects are before them, have probably all the proper Ideas of Sight which we have, without the Idea of Number.
16/32Senses.] Senses; since they can be received sometimes without the Ideas of Colour, and sometimes without those of Touching, though never without the one or the other.
16/33Smells, … &c.] Smells, colours, Sound, Cold, Heat, &c.
17/15as also] as also,
17/22Antients. 4. The] Antients. This inward Pain of Compassion cannot be called a Sensation of Sight. It solely arises from an Opinion of Misery felt by another, and not immediately from a visible Form. The same Form presented to the Eye by the exactest Painting, or the Action of a Player, gives no Pain to those who remember that there is no Misery felt. When Men by Imagination conceive real Pain felt by an Actor, without recollecting that it is merely feigned, or when they think of the real Story represented, then, as there is a confused Opinion of real Misery, there is also Pain in Compassion. 4.
17/23–24Virtue, or Vice] Virtue or Vice,
17/26Virtue, or Vice] Virtue or Vice,
18/15Plato* accounts] Plato makes one of his Dialogists* account
18/24our selves] ourselves
18/28Senses);] Senses, of Taste and Touch chiefly);
19/6–12The third … of Love.] om.
19/18Desires, with] Desires, and that with
19/20Hence it is that] Thus
20/16Sense, by] Sense, yet by
20/26this] all this,
20/34Sect. 6.] Sect. 2.
21/26such as] such as those of
21/30–22/1a Desire of Distinction,] an Emulation or desire of Eminence,
23/33II.] II. in his Foundation of Morality in Theory and Practice.
24/4–10Desire is … is plain,] there is a certain Pain or Uneasiness accompanying most of our violent Desires. Though the Object pursued be Good, or the Means of Pleasure, yet the Desire of it generally is attended with an uneasy Sensation. When an Object or Event appears Evil, we desire to shun or prevent it. This Desire is also attended with uneasy Sensation of Impatience: Now this Sensation  immediately connected with the Desire, is a distinct Sensation from those which we dread, and endeavour to shun. It is plain then,
24/12–15itself. ”… be uneasy:] itself.” Uneasy Sensations previously felt, will raise a Desire of whatever will remove them; and this Desire may have its concomitant Uneasiness. Pleasant Sensations expected from any Object may raise our Desire of it; this Desire too may have its concomitant uneasy Sensations:
24/22pleasant] peculiar pleasant
24/31the Pleasure of gratified] that Pleasure which merely arises from gratifying of
24/32since the] since this
25/12Desire or Affection] Desire, or the mere Affection,
25/24our Happiness,] our future Happiness
26/9–10these are either … shewing,] the two former are Motives only to external Actions; and the other two only shew
26/11of the Happiness of others,] of the Happiness of others,
26/12Event … desired] Event desired
26/22but as conceiving it] except we imagined their Happiness to be
27/30but to continue him in Misery,] or to harden our Hearts against all feelings of Compassion, on the one hand, while yet the Object continued in Misery;
28/6Drink] Drink and his Sensations of Hunger and Thirst
28/14Life.] Life, which must be the Case with those who voluntarily hazard their Lives, or resolve on Death for their Country or Friends.
28/30attempting] from the attempting
29/13“befooled] “outwitted by nature
30/17or certainly future] or future
30/18are sure] expect or judge
30/24–25in some sense also be called a Sensation.] be called a Sort of Sensation: as the Physicians call many of our Passions internal Senses.
30/28–31includes, beside … impending Evil,] includes a strong Brutal Impulse of the Will, sometimes without any distinct notions of Good, publick or private, attended with
31/14it appears] they appear
32/6Temper. We] Temper. Sometimes the calm Motion of the Will conquers the Passion, and sometimes is conquered by it. Thus Lust or Revenge may conquer the calm Affection toward private Good, and sometimes are conquered by it. Compassion will prevent the necessary Correction of a Child, or the use of a severe Cure, while the calm parental Affection is exciting to it. Sometimes the latter prevails over the former. All this is beautifully represented in the 9th book of Plato’s Republick. We
33/32In the third edition The same … finite Evils. is connected to, and concludes, the previous paragraph.
33/33–34about … that tho] even in the acts of the Understanding, or in Judging, that though
34/19by the Moment] by the Importance or Moment
34/25the Axioms subjoined] the Maxims subjoined
34/34Treat. 4] Treat. II. [As noted by Turco, Hutcheson incorrectly emended the third edition. The reference should be to the final paragraph of T4 6.6.]
35/11Cor.Relative]  Hence relative
35/31Cor. 2.] 2.
36/1–2the Powers … Goods] Goods of several sorts
36/7–8at once … Evil:] at once Good and Evil:
36/18Action is … Sense,] Action is morally good,
36/25–26(*which is … Passions;)] (*universal Evil is scarce ever intended, and particular Evil only in violent Passion)
37/16beloved.] for whose sake it is desired.
37/25Intenseness:] Intenseness, or Dignity of the Enjoyment:
40/17selves … Systems,] Hearts,
41/7And we] We
41/23We do] We
41/25do not seem] seem not
42/30of Good,] of Good,
43/25ours. There] ours. There are  perhaps Orders of rational Beings also without these particular limited Attachments, to which our Natures are subjected; who may perhaps have no Parental Affection, Friendships, or Love to a Country, or to any special smaller Systems; but have Universal Good‐will to all, and this solely proportioned to the moral Excellencies of the several Objects, without any other Bonds of Affection. There
47/33do accompany] accompany
49/31from a like] from a certain Prospect of future pleasant Sensations on the one hand, or from a like
50/14–19Joy of Love … Sorrow of Aversion:] raises joyful Love: Good in suspense, the Love of Desire, or desirous Love: Good lost, sorrowful Love. Evil present, raises sorrowful Aversion: Evil expected, desirous Aversion; and Evil removed, joyful Aversion. The joyful Love, and joyful Hatred, will possibly be found nearly the same sort of Sensations, though upon different Occasions; the same may be said of the sorrowful Love, and the sorrowful Aversion:
52/10tho … often [tho’ other Degrees may often
54/29shewing] shewing, [In the third edition the five numbered paragraphs following “shewing” are connected to form one paragraph. The small caps used to offset “How” at the beginning of each paragraph is rendered in regular print as “How”]
56/23–24absent … others;] Happiness of others while it is in suspense;
57/23Diffidence of] Diffidence in
58/3do raise] raise
58/20this Passion,] it,
58/21malicious, and designing] malicious, designing
58/22we … pursue] we naturally pursue
59/25Let … especially] Let one reflect on this Class of Passions,
65/22would give us;] gives us;
65/32external] other sorts of
66/2(in title)under] in
66/15others:] others, or Consciousness of moral Evil:
67/16fellow Creatures.] Fellow‐creatures.
67/24it self;] itself:
68/13proportioned] generally proportioned
74/27have any] secure constant
76/2–3all … Cruelty,] all Cruelty,
78/27–28Praise …Style,] Praise,
82/23but] and that
83/4–5of the lower … boasting] Expressions of the Stoicks, boasting, one would imagine, who did not remember other parts of their Scheme,
87/1–2find … Misfortunes;] when under Misfortunes find in being pitied by others;
88/28–29Fly or Maggot] Brute or Insect
89/24Luxurious Debauchee] Debauchee
90/27–29An Hobby‐Horse … a Son.] Our former Toys we more easily procured, kept in good order, and managed, than the present Objects of our Cares, an Employment, a Son, a Friend, a Country, a Party.
91/15luxurious Debauchees,] Debauchees
95/8given to Castle‐building,] amusing himself with imaginary Scenes of Life,
95/24When we] When indeed we
95/26begin indeed from] begin from
95/29“That had we] That we had
96/1–2Time”—No Mortal,] Time—No mortal,
96/25–26Absence … revenged?] Safety from Injury, to the having revenged an Injury?
99/14Life: The] Life, the
99/20Necessity, do] Necessity,
100/11World, … themselves,] World,
100/12–13incapable … without] without,
100/28any one] one
101/9Men should neglect] Men neglect
102/6–7Praise … represent] World imagines
102/29Duels,] our Duels,
105/14Reflection; nor] Reflection; and that almost solely arises from the return of Appetite; and some Prospect of repeated Enjoyment, or some moral Notions of Love or Friendship or Communication of Pleasure: without these the Remembrance of past sensual Enjoyments is more generally nauseous. Nor
106/27nor ever] never
106/29in every] in almost every
107/12our selves,] ourselves,
107/18our selves;] ourselves;
108/22–23no … these.] least Relief from them.
110/12We see therefore,] Thus,
110/13that] we see that
110/14–15Honour … to] Honour: To
111/1–2us … by] us, by
113/7Passions do often] Passions often
113/24Authors … to] Authors to
113/29publickly useful.] useful to the Publick.
115/10Merit do] Merit
117/10The] When we have the
117/11–13is indeed … We] we
117/17–18The Conceptions] Conceptions
118/28Author.] Author. See Treat. I. Sect. ult.
118/32external Pains] the most severe external Pain
118/35the Pains] Pain
120/35–121/1their natural … Necessaries.] the common Necessaries, or even of the natural Conveniences of Life,
122/17Par. lost,] Par. Lost,
124/6Frauds … what] Frauds in other points, yet probably
127/12a generous] generous
Treatise ii: Illustrations upon the Moral Sense
133/10–11called privately] called for shortness,  privately
134/7–8is pleasant … Agent.] has some little Pleasure attending it in the Observer, and raises Love toward the Agent, in whom the Quality approved is deemed to reside, and not in the Observer, who has a Satisfaction in the Act of approving.*
134/22Mr. Hobbes,] Hobbes, Rochefocault, and others of the last Century,
134/26Moralists] Moralists of this Scheme
134/27“ ’tis the Prospect] it is the “Prospect
136/8be] have been
136/23imagined do] imagine
138/33Suasoriae.] Suasoriæ, or these, sub ratione utilis.
139/8–9Affection, … Affection):] Affection or Passion: This paragraph follows in the third edition:Writers on these Subjects should remember the common Divisions of the Faculties of the Soul. That there is 1.Reason presenting the natures and relations of things, antecedently to any Act of Will or Desire:2. The Will, or Appetitus Rationalis, or the disposition of Soul to pursue what is presented as good, and to shun Evil. Were there no other Power in the Soul, than that of mere contemplation, there would be no Affection, Volition, Desire, Action. Nay without some motion of Will no Man would voluntarily persevere in Contemplation. There must be a Desire of Knowledge, and of the Pleasure which attends it: this too is an Act of Willing. Both these Powers are by the Antients included under the λογος or λογικὸν μήρος. Below these they place two other powers dependent on the Body, the Sensus, and the Appetitus Sensitivus, in which they place the particular Passions: the former answers to the Understanding,  and the latter to the Will. But the Will is forgot of late, and some ascribe to the Intellect, not only Contemplation or Knowledge, but Choice, Desire, Prosecuting, Loving. Nay some are grown so ingenious in uniting the Powers of the Soul, that contemplating with Pleasure, Symmetry and Proportion, an Act of the Intellect as they plead, is the same thing with Goodwill or the virtuous Desire of publick Happiness.
140/20–22one … Ideas:] a Mistake some fall into;
140/30prove, that “all] prove “that all
140/31Desire,] Desire, actually operating
141/2do form] form
141/3–4The … is] Such Conceptions are
141/13either] to either
141/21Is it] It is
144/4serves the] serves in
144/23Sense] Sense in the Constitution of the Soul.
146/9Gerund,] Gerund or Participle,
149/15sweet,] sweet This paragraph follows in the third edition: ’Tis manifest we have in our Understanding moral Ideas, or they are Perceptions of the Soul: we reason about them, we compare, we judge; but then we do all the same Acts about Extension, Figure, Colour, Taste, Sound, which Perceptions all Men call Sensations. All our Ideas, or the materials  of our reasoning or judging, are received by some immediate Powers of Perception internal or external, which we may call Senses; by these too we have Pleasure and Pain. All Perception is by the Soul, not by the Body, tho’ some Impressions on the bodily Organs are the Occasions of some of them; and in others the Soul is determined to other sorts of Feelings or Sensations, where no bodily Impression is the immediate Occasion. A certain incorporeal Form, if one may use that Name, a Temper observed, a Character, an Affection, a State of a sensitive Being, known or understood, may raise Liking, Approbation, Sympathy, as naturally from the very Constitution of the Soul, as any bodily Impression raises external Sensations. Reasoning or Intellect seems to raise no new Species of Ideas, but to discover or discern the Relations of those received. Reason shews what Acts are conformable to a Law, a Will of a Superior; or what Acts tend to Private Good, or to Publick Good: In like manner, Reason discovers contrary Tendencies of contrary Actions. Both Contraries are alike the Object of the Understanding, and may give that sort of Pleasure which arises upon Discovery of Truth. A Demonstration that certain Actions are detrimental to Society is attended with the peculiar Pleasure of new Knowledge, as much as a like Demonstration of  the Benefit of Virtue. But when we approve a kind beneficent Action, let us consider whether this Feeling, or Action, or Modification of the Soul more resembles an Act of Contemplation, such as this [when strait Lines intersect each other, the vertical Angles are equal;] or that Liking we have to a beautiful Form, an harmonious Composition, a grateful Sound.
151/29corresponding] resembling or analogous
153/14of one] one
154/29Some do] Some
156/8(the Word] the (Word
156/23do continue,] continue
157/11many do] many
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[55.]Hutcheson toned down or removed the mathematical language in the third edition of the Essay with Illustrations as well as in later editions of the Inquiry. This included not only the mathematical notation (also purged from T2), but also the word “axioms” which is replaced by “maxims” in the text, although it persists in the marginal titles. The desire to render morals into mathematically quantifiable ratios likely derives from Cumberland, cf. De Legibus Naturae, I §§5–9.
[*]See Treat. 2. Sect. 3. Art. II. last Paragraph.
[*]De Nat. Deor. Lib. 2. cap. 37. Ex Aristotele.
* See Luke x. 12, 13, 14.
* This may sufficiently justify the Writers of Morality in their proving, that “Virtue is the surest Means of Happiness to the Agent.” ’Tis also plain from universal Experience, that a Regard to the Deity, frequent Reflection on his Goodness, and consequent Acts of Love, are the strongest and most universally prevailing Means of obtaining a good Temper. Whatever Institution therefore does most effectually tend to raise Mens Attention, to recall their Minds from the Hurry of their common Affairs, to instruct them in the Ways of promoting publick Good farther than the busy Part of the World without assistance would probably apprehend, must be so wise and good, that every honest Mind should rejoice in it, even though it had no other Authority than human to recommend it. Every one will understand that by this is meant a publick Worship on set Days, in which a stop is put to Commerce, and the busy part of Mankind instructed in the Duties of Piety and Humanity.