Outlines of the History of Ethics for English Readers

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Macmillan and Company, Limited, 1896 - Ethics - 288 pages

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Page 92 - Felicity is a continual progress of the desire from one object to another, the attaining of the former being still but the way to the latter.
Page 94 - Demonstration.—The idea of a supreme Being, infinite in power, goodness, and wisdom, whose workmanship we are, and on whom we depend; and the idea of ourselves, as understanding rational beings; being such as are clear in us, would, I suppose, if duly considered and pursued, afford such foundations of our duty and rules of action as might place morality amongst the sciences capable of demonstration...
Page 114 - Let it be allowed, though virtue or moral rectitude does indeed consist in affection to and pursuit of what is right and good, as such; yet, that when we sit down in a cool hour, we can neither justify to ourselves this or any other pursuit, till we are convinced that it will be for our happiness, or, at least, not contrary to it.
Page 147 - It is not to be expected that this process should be strictly pursued previously to every moral judgment, or to every legislative or judicial operation. It may, however, be always kept in view: and as near as the process actually pursued on these occasions approaches to it, so near will such process approach to the character of an exact one.
Page 126 - Reverse, in any considerable circumstance, the condition of men : Produce extreme abundance or extreme necessity : Implant in the human breast perfect moderation and humanity, or perfect rapaciousness and malice : By rendering justice totally useless, you thereby totally destroy its essence, and suspend its obligation upon mankind.
Page 121 - ... that action is best, which procures the greatest happiness for the greatest numbers; and that worst, which in like manner occasions misery.
Page 119 - But some of great and distinguished merit, have, I think, expressed themselves in a manner, which may occasion some danger, to careless readers, of imagining the whole of virtue to consist in singly aiming, according to the best of their judgment, at promoting the happiness of mankind in the present state...
Page 162 - ... the absolutely good, the absolutely right, in conduct, can be that only which produces pure pleasure — pleasure unalloyed with pain anywhere. By implication, conduct which has any concomitant of pain, or any painful consequence, is partially wrong...
Page 99 - Whatever I judge reasonable or unreasonable for another to do for Me, That, by the same Judgment, I declare reasonable or unreasonable, that I in the like Case should do for Him.
Page 114 - Reasonable self-love and conscience are the chief or superior principles in the nature of man : because an action may be suitable to this nature, though all other principles be violated ; but becomes unsuitable, if either of those are.

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