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conscientiously to do what is right, and genéroully and disinterestedly to pursue the good of others, though, to all appearance, we facrifice our own to it; and at all events to conform to the will of our maker, who, standing in an equal relation to all his offspring, must wish the good of them all, and therefore cannot approve of our consulting our own happiness at the expence of that of others, but must rather take pleasure in feeing us act upon the maxims of his own generous benevolence; depending, in general, that that great, tighteous, and good being, who approves of our conduct, will not suffer us to be lofers by it upon the whole.
There is a lower species of self interest, or selfishness, confisting in the love of money, which, beyond a certain degree, is highly deserving of censure. As a means of proeuring ourselves any kind of gratification, that can be purchased, the love of money is a passion of the same nature with a fond. ness for that species of pleasure which can be purchased with it. If, for instance, a man makes no other use of his wealth than to VOL. I.
procure and wrong.
procure the means of sensual pleasure, the love of money, in him, is only another name for the love of pleasure. If a man accumulates money with no other view than to indulge his taste in the refined arts above mentioned, his love of money is the same thing with a love of the arts; or lastly, if a man really intends nothing but the good of others, while he is amassing riches, he is actuated by the principle of benevolence.
In short, the love of money, whenever it is pursued, directly and properly, as a means to something else, is a passion, the rank of which keeps pace with the end that is proposed to be gained by it. But in the
pursuit of riches, it is very common to forget the use of money as a means; and to desire it without any farther end, so as even to sacrifice to this pursuit all those appetites and passions, to the gratification of which it was originally subservient, and for the sake of which only it was originally coveted. In this state the love of money, or the passion we call covelousness, is evidently absurd This gross self interest, which consists in an exceffive love of money, as an end, and without any regard to its use, will fometimes bring a man to abridge himself of all the natural enjoyments of life, and engage him in the most laborious pursuits, attended with most painful anxiety of mind; it very often steels his heart against all the feelings of humanity and compassion, and never fails to fill him with envy, jealousy, and resentment against all those whom he imagines to be his competitors and rivals. Much less does this sordid passion admit of any of the pleasures that result from a consciousness of the approbation of God, of our fellow creatures, or of our own minds. In fact, it deprives a man of all the genuine pleasures of his nature, and involves him in much perplexity and distress; the immediate cause of which, though it be often absurd and imaginary, is serious to himself, and makes him appear in a ridiculous light to others.
of power, or of any thing else, that is originally desirable as a means to fome farther end, but which afterwards becomes itself an ultimate end of our actions. It is even, in a great measure, true of the love of knowledge or learning. This is chiefly useful as a means, and is valuable in proportion to the end it is fitted to answer; but, together with the love of riches and power, it is absurd, and to be condemned, when pursued as an end, or for its own sake only.
The amassing of money must be allowed to be reasonable, or at least excusable, provided there be a probability that a man may live to enjoy it, or that it may be of use to his posterity, or others in whose welfare he interests himself; but when we see a man persisting in the accumulation of wealth, even to extreme old age, when it would be deemed madness in him to pretend that he could have any real want of it ; when he discovers the same avaricious temper, though he has no children, and there is no body for whom he is known to have the least regard, it is evident that he putsues money as an
arte end, or for its own fake, and not at all as a
means to any thing farther. In this case, Ten, E.
therefore, it is, without doubt, highly cri. minal, and deserving of the above mentioned censures.
$4. Of the pasions which arise from our
The passions and affections which I have hitherto considered are those which belong to us as individuals, and do not necessarily suppose any relation to other beings, I shall now proceed to treat of those which are of this latter class, and first of the pleasure that we take in the good opinion of others concerning us, which gives rise to that passion which we call the love of fame.
This is a passion that discovers itself pretty early in life, and arises principally from our experience and observation of the many advantages that result from the good opinion of others. In the early part of life this principle is of signal use to us, as a powerful incentive to those actions which