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Whether the irascible passions precede the concupiscible passions, or vice versa?

Objection 1: It would seem that the irascible passions precede the concupiscible passions. For the order of the passions is that of their objects. But the object of the irascible faculty is the difficult good, which seems to be the highest good. Therefore the irascible passions seem to precede the concupiscible passions.

Objection 2: Further, the mover precedes that which is moved. But the irascible faculty is compared to the concupiscible, as mover to that which is moved: since it is given to animals, for the purposed of removing the obstacles that hinder the concupiscible faculty from enjoying its object, as stated above (Q[23], A[1], ad 1; FP, Q[81], A[2] ). Now "that which removes an obstacle, is a kind of mover" (Phys. viii, 4). Therefore the irascible passions precede the concupiscible passions.

Objection 3: Further, joy and sadness are concupiscible passions. But joy and sadness succeed to the irascible passions: for the Philosopher says (Ethic. iv, 5) that"retaliation causes anger to cease, because it produces pleasure instead of the previous pain." Therefore the concupiscible passions follow the irascible passions.

On the contrary, The concupiscible passions regard the absolute good, while the irascible passions regard a restricted, viz. the difficult, good. Since, therefore, the absolute good precedes the restricted good, it seems that the concupiscible passions precede the irascible.

I answer that, In the concupiscible passions there is more diversity than in the passions of the irascible faculty. For in the former we find something relating to movement---e.g. desire; and something belonging to repose, e.g. joy and sadness. But in the irascible passions there is nothing pertaining to repose, and only that which belongs to movement. The reason of this is that when we find rest in a thing, we no longer look upon it as something difficult or arduous; whereas such is the object of the irascible faculty.

Now since rest is the end of movement, it is first in the order of intention, but last in the order of execution. If, therefore, we compare the passions of the irascible faculty with those concupiscible passions that denote rest in good, it is evident that in the order of execution, the irascible passions take precedence of such like passions of the concupiscible faculty: thus hope precedes joy, and hence causes it, according to the Apostle (Rom. 12:12): "Rejoicing in hope." But the concupiscible passion which denotes rest in evil, viz. sadness, comes between two irascible passions: because it follows fear; since we become sad when we are confronted by the evil that we feared: while it precedes the movement of anger; since the movement of self-vindication, that results from sadness, is the movement of anger. And because it is looked upon as a good thing to pay back the evil done to us; when the angry man has achieved this he rejoices. Thus it is evident that every passion of the irascible faculty terminates in a concupiscible passion denoting rest, viz. either in joy or in sadness.

But if we compare the irascible passions to those concupiscible passions that denote movement, then it is clear that the latter take precedence: because the passions of the irascible faculty add something to those of the concupiscible faculty; just as the object of the irascible adds the aspect of arduousness or difficulty to the object of the concupiscible faculty. Thus hope adds to desire a certain effort, and a certain raising of the spirits to the realization of the arduous good. In like manner fear adds to aversion or detestation a certain lowness of spirits, on account of difficulty in shunning the evil.

Accordingly the passions of the irascible faculty stand between those concupiscible passions that denote movement towards good or evil, and those concupiscible passions that denote rest in good or evil. And it is therefore evident that the irascible passions both arise from and terminate in the passions of the concupiscible faculty.

Reply to Objection 1: This argument would prove, if the formal object of the concupiscible faculty were something contrary to the arduous, just as the formal object of the irascible faculty is that which is arduous. But because the object of the concupiscible faculty is good absolutely, it naturally precedes the object of the irascible, as the common precedes the proper.

Reply to Objection 2: The remover of an obstacle is not a direct but an accidental mover: and here we are speaking of passions as directly related to one another. Moreover, the irascible passion removes the obstacle that hinders the concupiscible from resting in its object. Wherefore it only follows that the irascible passions precede those concupiscible passions that connote rest. The third object leads to the same conclusion.

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