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Proposition I.

I. Proposition I. The same necessary and eternal different relations that different things bear one to another, and the same consequent fitness or unfitness of the application of different things or different relations one to another, with regard to which the will of God always 157and necessarily does determine itself, to choose to act only what is agreeable to justice, equity, goodness, and truth, in order to the welfare of the whole universe, ought likewise constantly to determine the wills of all subordinate rational beings, to govern all their actions by the same rules, for the good of the public, in their respective stations; that is, these eternal and necessary differences of things make it fit and reasonable for creatures so to act; They cause it to be their duty, or lay an obligation upon them so to do, even separate from the consideration of these rules being the positive will or command of God, and also antecedent to any respect or regard, expectation or apprehension, of any particular private and personal advantage or disadvantage, reward or punishment, either present or future, annexed either by natural consequence, or by positive appointment, to the practising or neglecting of those rules.

The several parts of this proposition may be proved distinctly, in the following manner.

I. That there are eternal and necessary differences of things. That there are differences of things, and different relations, respects, or proportions, of some things towards others, is as evident and undeniable as that one magnitude or number is greater, equal to, or smaller than another. That from these different relations of different things there necessarily arises an agreement or disagreement of some things with others, or a fitness or unfitness of the application of different things or different relations one to another, is likewise as plain as that there is any such thing as proportion or disproportion in geometry and arithmetic, or uniformity or difformity in comparing together the respective figures of bodies. Further, that there is a fitness or suitableness of certain circumstances to certain persons, and an unsuitableness of others, founded in the nature of things and the qualifications of persons antecedent to all positive appointment whatsoever; also, that, from the different relations of different persons one to another, there necessarily arises a fitness or unfitness of certain manners 158of behaviour of some persons towards others; is as manifest as that the properties which flow from the essences of different mathematical figures have different congruities or incongruities between themselves, or that, in mechanics, certain weights or powers have very different forces, and different effects one upon another, according to their different distances, or different positions and situations in respect of each other: For instance; that God is infinitely superior to men is as clear as that infinity is larger than a point, or eternity longer than a moment; and it is as certainly fit that men should honour and worship, obey and imitate God, than on the contrary in all their actions endeavour to dishonour and disobey him, as it is certainly true that they have an entire dependence on him, and he, on the contrary, can in no respect receive any advantage from them; and not only so, but also that his will is as certainly and unalterably just and equitable in giving his commands as his power is irresistible in requiring submission to it. Again: It is a thing absolutely and necessarily fitter in itself, that the supreme author and creator of the universe should govern, order, and direct all things to certain and constant regular ends, than that every thing should be permitted to go on at adventures, and produce uncertain effects merely by chance and in the utmost confusion, without any determinate view or design at all. It is a thing manifestly fitter in itself, that the all-powerful governor of the world should do always what is best in the whole, and what tends most to the universal good of the whole creation, than that he should make the whole continually miserable, or that, to satisfy the unreasonable desires of any particular depraved natures, he should at any time suffer the order of the whole to be altered and perverted. Lastly, it is a thing evidently and infinitely more fit, that any one particular innocent and good being should, by the supreme ruler and disposer of all things, be placed and preserved in an easy and happy estate, than that, 159without any fault or demerit of its own, it should be made extremely, remedilessly, and endlessly miserable. In like manner, in men’s dealing and conversing one with another, it is undeniably more fit, absolutely and in the nature of the thing itself, that all men should endeavour to promote the universal good and welfare of all, than that all men should be continually contriving the ruin and destruction of all. It is evidently more fit, even before all positive bargains and compacts, that men should deal one with another according to the known rules of justice and equity, than that every man, for his own present advantage, should, without scruple, disappoint the most reasonable and equitable expectations of his neighbours, and cheat and defraud, or spoil by violence, all others, without restraint. Lastly, it is, without dispute, more fit and reasonable in itself, that I should preserve the life of an innocent man, that happens at any time to be in my power, or deliver him from any imminent danger, though I have never made him any promise so to do, than that I should suffer him to perish, or take away his life, without any reason or provocation at all.

These The absurdity of those who deny the eternal and necessary differences of things. things are so notoriously plain and self-evident that nothing but the extremest stupidity of mind, corruption of manners, or perverseness of spirit, can possibly make any man entertain the least doubt concerning them. For a man indued with reason, to deny the truth of these things, is the very same thing as if a man that has the use of his sight should, at the same time that he beholds the sun, deny that there is any such thing as light in the world; or as if a man that understands geometry or arithmetic, should deny the most obvious and known proportions of lines or numbers, and perversely contend that the whole is not equal to all its parts, or that a square is not double to a triangle of equal base and height. Any man of ordinary capacity, and unbiassed judgment, plainness, and simplicity, who had never read, and had never been told, that there were 160men and philosophers who had in earnest asserted, and attempted to prove, that there is no natural and unalterable difference between good and evil, would, at the first hearing, be as hardly persuaded to believe that it could ever really enter into the heart of any intelligent man to deny all natural difference between right and wrong, as he would be to believe that ever there could be any geometer who would seriously and in good earnest lay it down, as a first principle, that a crooked line is as straight as a right one. So that indeed it might justly seem altogether a needless undertaking to attempt to prove and establish the eternal difference of good and evil, had there not appeared certain men, as Mr. Hobbes and some few others, who have presumed, contrary to the plainest and most obvious reason of mankind, to assert, and not without some subtilty endeavoured to prove, that there is no such real difference originally, necessarily, and absolutely in the nature of things; but that all obligation of duty to God arises merely from his absolute irresistible power, and all duty towards men merely from positive compact; and have founded their whole scheme of politics upon that opinion: Wherein, as they have contradicted the judgment of all the wisest and soberest part of mankind, so they have not been able to avoid contradicting themselves also; for, not to mention now, that they have no way to show how compacts themselves come to be obligatory, but by inconsistently owning an eternal original fitness in the thing itself, which I shall have occasion to observe hereafter: Besides, this, I say, if there be naturally and absolutely in things themselves no difference between good and evil, just and, unjust, then, in the state of nature, before any compact be made, it is equally as good, just, and reasonable, for one man to destroy the life of another, not only when it is necessary for his own preservation, but also arbitrarily and without any provocation at all,111111   See Hobbes de Cive, c. 3. § 4. or any appearance of advantage 161to himself, as to preserve or save another man’s life, when he may do it without any hazard of his own: The consequence of which is, that not only the first and most obvious way for every particular man to secure himself effectually, would be, (as Mr Hobbes teaches) to endeavour to prevent and cut off all others, but also that men might destroy one another upon every foolish and peevish, or arbitrary humour, even when they did not think any such thing necessary for their own preservation: And the effect of this practice must needs be, that it would terminate in the destruction of all mankind; which being undeniably a great and insufferable evil, Mr Hobbes himself confesses it reasonable that, to prevent this evil, men should enter into certain compacts to preserve one another. Now, if the destruction of mankind by each other’s hands be such an evil, that, to prevent it, it was fit and reasonable that men should enter into compacts to preserve each other, then, before any such compacts, it was manifestly a thing unfit and unreasonable in itself that mankind should all destroy one another. And if so, then for the same reason it was also unfit and unreasonable, antecedent to all compacts, that any one man should destroy another arbitrarily and without any provocation, or at any time when it was not absolutely and immediately necessary for the preservation of himself; which is directly contradictory to Mr. Hobbes’s first supposition,112112   Ex his sequitur injuriam nemini fieri posse, nisi ei quocum initur pactum. De Cive, c. 3. § 4. where see more to the same purpose. of there being no natural and absolute difference between good and evil, just and unjust, antecedent to positive compact. And in like manner, all others, who, upon any pretence whatsoever, teach that good and evil depend originally on the constitution of positive laws, whether divine or human, must unavoidably run into the same absurdity: For, if there be no such thing as good and evil in the nature of things, antecedent to all laws, then neither can any one law 162be better than another, nor any one thing whatever be more justly established and enforced by laws, than the contrary; nor can113113   Manifestum est rationem nullam esse lege prohibendi noxas tales, nisi agnoscant tales actus, etiam antecedenter ad ullam legem, mala esse.Cumberl. de Leg. Nat. page 194. any reason be given why any laws should ever be made at all: But all laws equally will be either arbitrary and tyrannical,114114   Nam stoliditas inveniri quæ inanior potest, quam mala esse nulla contendere, et tanquam malos perdere et condemnare peccantes?Arnob. advers. Gentes, lib. 2. or frivolous and needless, because the contrary might with equal reason have been established, if, before the making of the laws, all things had been alike indifferent in their own nature. There is no possible way to avoid this absurdity, but by saying, that, out of things in their own nature absolutely indifferent, those are chosen by wise governors to be made obligatory by law, the practice of which they judge will tend to the public benefit of the community. But this is an express contradiction in the very terms. For, if the practice of certain things tends to the public benefit of the world, and the contrary would tend to the public disadvantage, then those things are not in their own nature indifferent, but were good and reasonable to be practised before any law was made, and can only for that very reason be wisely enforced by the authority of laws. Only here it is to be observed, that, by the public benefit, must115115   Qui autem civium rationem dicunt habendam, externorum negant; dirimunt hi communem generis humani societatem; qua sublata, justitia funditus tollitur.Cic. de Offic. lib. 3. not be understood the interest of any one particular nation, to the plain injury or prejudice of the rest of mankind, any more than the interest of one city or family, in opposition to their neighbours of the same country. But those things only are truly good in their own nature which either tend to the universal benefit and welfare of all men, or at least are not destructive of it. The true state, therefore, of this case, is plainly this: Some 163things are in their own nature good and reasonable, and fit to be done; such as keeping faith, and performing equitable compacts, and the like; and these receive not their obligatory power from any law or authority, but are only declared, confirmed, and enforced by penalties upon such as would not perhaps be governed by right reason only. Other things are in their own nature absolutely evil; such as breaking faith, refusing to perform equitable compacts, cruelly destroying those who have neither directly nor indirectly given any occasion for any such treatment, and the like: And these cannot, by any law or authority whatsoever, be made fit and reasonable, or excusable to be practised. Lastly, other things are in their own nature indifferent; that is, (not absolutely and strictly so; as such trivial actions, which have no way any tendency at all either to the public welfare or damage; for, concerning such things, it would be childish and trifling to suppose any laws to be made at all; but they are) such things, whose tendency to the public benefit or disadvantage is either so small or so remote, or so obscure and involved, that the generality of people are not able of themselves to discern on which side they ought to act; and these things are made obligatory by the authority of laws, though perhaps every one cannot distinctly perceive the reason and fitness of their being enjoined; of which sort are many particular penal laws in several countries and nations. But to proceed:

The An answer to the objection drawn from the variety of the opinions of learned men, and the laws of different nations concerning right and wrong. principal thing that can, with any colour of reason, seem to countenance the opinion of those who deny the natural and eternal difference of good and evil, (for Mr. Hobbes’s false reasonings I shall hereafter consider by themselves,) is the difficulty there may sometimes be, to define exactly the bounds of right and wrong, the variety116116   Τὰ δε καλὰ καὶ τὰ δίκαια. περὶ ὦν ἡ πολιτικὴ σκοπεῖται, τοσάυτην ἔχει διαφορὰν καὶ πλὰνην ωστε δοκεῖν νόμῳ εἶναι, φύσει δε μή.Aristot. Ethic. lib. 1. cap. 1. of opinions that have 164obtained even among understanding and learned men concerning certain questions of just and unjust, especially in political matters, and the many contrary laws that have been made in divers ages and in different countries concerning these matters. But as, in painting, two very different colours, by diluting each other very slowly and gradually, may, from the highest intenseness in either extreme, terminate in the midst insensibly, and so run one into the other, that it shall not be possible even for a skilful eye to determine exactly where the one ends and the other begins; and yet the colours may really differ as much as can be, not in degree only, but entirely in kind, as red and blue, or white and black; so, though it may perhaps be very difficult, in some nice and perplexed cases, (which yet are very far from occurring frequently,) to define exactly the bounds of right and wrong, just and unjust, and there may be some latitude in the judgment of different men and the laws of divers nations; yet right and wrong are nevertheless in themselves totally and essentially different; even altogether as much as white and black, light and darkness. The Spartan law, perhaps, which117117   Κλέπτειν νενόμιστο τοὺς ἐλευθέρους παῖδας, ὅ τί τις δύναιτο.Plutarch. Apophthegmata Laconica. permitted their youth to steal, may, as absurd as it was, bear much dispute whether it was absolutely unjust or no, because every man having an absolute right in his own goods, it may seem that the members of any society may agree to transfer or alter their own properties upon what conditions they shall think fit; but if it could be supposed that a law had been made at Sparta, or at Rome, or in India, or in any other part of the world, whereby it had been commanded or allowed, that every man might rob by violence, and murder whomsoever he met with, or that no faith should be kept with any man, nor any equitable compacts performed, no man, with any tolerable use 165of his reason, whatever diversity of judgment might be among them in other matters, would have thought that such a law could have authorised or excused, much less have justified such actions, and have made them become good; because, it is plainly not in men’s power to make falsehood be truth, though they may alter the property of their goods as they please. Now, if, in flagrant cases, the natural and essential difference between good and evil, right and wrong, cannot but be confessed to be plainly and undeniably evident, the difference between them must be also essential and unalterable in all, even the smallest, and nicest, and most intricate cases, though it be not so easy to be discerned and accurately distinguished; for, if, from the difficulty of determining exactly the bounds of right and wrong in many perplexed cases, it could truly be concluded that just and unjust were not essentially different by nature, but only by positive constitution and custom, it would follow equally, that they were not really, essentially, and unalterably different, even in the most flagrant cases that can be supposed; which is an assertion so very absurd, that Mr. Hobbes himself could hardly vent it without blushing, and discovering plainly, by his shifting expressions, his secret self-condemnation. There are, therefore, certain necessary and eternal differences of things, and certain consequent fitnesses or unfitnesses of the application of different things, or different relations one to another, not depending on any positive constitutions, but founded unchangeably in the nature and reason of things, and unavoidably arising from the differences of the things themselves; which is the first branch of the general proposition I proposed to prove.

2. That the will of God always determines itself to act according to the eternal reason of things. Now, what these eternal and unalterable relations, respects, or proportions of things, with their consequent agreements or disagreements, fitnesses, or unfitnesses, absolutely and necessarily are in themselves, that also they appear to be, to the understandings of all intelligent beings, except those only who 166understand things to be what they are not, that is, whose understandings are either very imperfect or very much depraved. And by this understanding or knowledge of the natural and necessary relations, fitnesses, and proportions of things, the wills likewise of all intelligent beings are constantly directed, and must needs be determined to act accordingly, excepting those only who will things to be what they are not and cannot be; that is, whose wills are corrupted by particular interest or affection, or swayed by some unreasonable and prevailing passion. Wherefore, since the natural attributes of God, his infinite knowledge, wisdom, and power, set him infinitely above all possibility of being deceived by any error, or of being influenced by any wrong affection, it is manifest his divine will cannot but always and necessarily determine itself to choose to do what in the whole is absolutely best and fittest to be done; that is, to act constantly according to the eternal rules of infinite goodness, justice, and truth; as I have endeavoured to show distinctly in my former discourse, in deducing severally the moral attributes of God.

3. That all rational creatures are obliged to govern themselves in all their actions, by the same eternal rule of reason. And now that the same reason of things, with regard to which the will of God always and necessarily does determine itself to act in constant conformity to the eternal rules of justice, equity, goodness, and truth, ought also constantly to determine the wills of all subordinate rational beings, to govern all their actions by the same rules, is very evident. For, as it is absolutely impossible in nature that God should be deceived by any error, or influenced by any wrong affection, so it is very unreasonable and blame-worthy in practice, that any intelligent creatures, whom God has made so far like unto himself, as to indue them with those excellent faculties of reason and will, whereby they are enabled to distinguish good from evil, and to choose the one and refuse the other, should either negligently suffer themselves to be imposed upon and deceived in matters 167of good and evil, right and wrong, or wilfully and perversely allow themselves to be over-ruled by absurd passions, and corrupt or partial affections, to act contrary to what they know is fit to be done. Which two things, viz. negligent misunderstanding, and wilful passions or lusts, are, as I said, the only causes which can make a reasonable creature act contrary to reason, that is, contrary to the eternal rules of justice, equity, righteousness, and truth: For, was it not for these inexcusable corruptions and depravations, it is impossible but the same proportions and fitnesses of things, which have so much weight, and so much excellency, and beauty in them, that the all-powerful creator and governor of the universe, (who has the absolute and uncontrollable dominion of all things in his own hands, and is accountable to none for what he does, yet) thinks it no diminution of his power to make this reason of things the unalterable rule and law of his own actions in the government of the world, and does nothing by mere will and arbitrariness; it is impossible, (I say,) if it was not for inexcusable corruption and depravation, but the same eternal reason of things must much more have weight enough to determine constantly the wills and actions of all subordinate, finite, dependent, and accountable beings. Proved from the original nature of things. For originally, and in reality, it is as natural and (morally speaking) necessary, that the will should be determined in every action by the reason of the thing, and the right of the case, as it is natural and (absolutely speaking) necessary, that the understanding should submit to a demonstrated truth; and it is as absurd and blame-worthy, to mistake negligently plain right and wrong, that is, to understand the proportions of things in morality to be what they are not, or wilfully to act contrary to known justice and equity, that is, to will things to be what they are not and cannot be, as it would be absurd and ridiculous for a man, in arithmetical matters, ignorantly to believe that twice two is not equal to four, or wilfully and obstinately to contend, against his own clear knowledge, that the whole is not equal to all 168its parts. The only difference is, that assent to a plain speculative truth is not in a man’s power to withhold; but to act according to the plain right and reason of things, this he may, by the natural liberty of his will, forbear; but the one he ought to do, and it is as much his plain and indispensable duty, as the other he cannot but do, and it is the necessity of his nature to do it: He that will-fully refuses to honour and obey God, from whom he received his being, and to whom he continually owes his preservation, is really guilty of an equal absurdity and inconsistency in practice, as he that in speculation denies the effect to owe any thing to its cause, or the whole to be bigger than its part. He that refuses to deal with all men equitably, and with every man as he desires they should deal with him, is guilty of the very same unreasonableness and contradiction in one case, as he that in another case should affirm one number or quantity to be equal to another, and yet that other at the same time not to be equal to the first: Lastly, he that acknowledges himself obliged to the practice of certain duties both towards God and towards men, and yet takes no care either to preserve his own being, or at least not to preserve himself in such a state and temper of mind and body, as may best enable him to perform those duties, is altogether as inexcusable and ridiculous as he that in any other matter should affirm one thing at the same time that he denies another, without which the former could not possibly be true; or undertake one thing at the same time that he obstinately omits another, without which the former is by no means practicable: Wherefore all rational creatures, whose wills are not constantly and regularly determined, and their actions governed by right reason and the necessary differences of good and evil, according to the eternal and invariable rules of justice, equity, goodness, and truth, but suffer themselves to be swayed by unaccountable arbitrary humours and rash passions, by lusts, vanity, and pride, by private interest, or present sensual pleasures; 169these, setting up their own unreasonable self-will in opposition to the nature and reason of things, endeavour (as much as in them lies) to make things be what they are not, and cannot be; which is the highest presumption and greatest insolence, as well as the greatest absurdity imaginable: It is acting contrary to that understanding, reason, and judgment, which God has implanted in their natures, on purpose to enable them to discern the difference between good and evil;—it is attempting to destroy that order by which the universe subsists;—it is offering the highest affront imaginable to the creator of all things, who made things to be what they are, and governs every thing himself according to the laws of their several natures;—in a word, all wilful wickedness and perversion of right is the very same insolence and absurdity in moral matters, as it would be in natural things for a man to pretend to alter the certain proportions of numbers,—to take away the demonstrable relations and properties of mathematical figures,—to make light darkness, and darkness light,—or to call sweet bitter, and bitter sweet.

Further: And from the sense that all, even wicked men, unavoidably have of their being under such an obligation. As it appears thus, from the abstract and absolute reason and nature of things, that all rational creatures ought, that is, are obliged to take care that their wills and actions be constantly determined and governed by the eternal rule of right and equity: so the certainty and universality of that obligation is plainly confirmed, and the force of it particularly discovered and applied to every man by this; that, in like manner as no one who is instructed in mathematics can forbear giving his assent to every geometrical demonstration, of which he understands the terms, either by his own study, or by having had them explained to him by others; so no man, who either has patience and opportunities to examine and consider things himself, or has the means of being taught and instructed in any tolerable manner by others, concerning the necessary relations and dependencies of things, can avoid giving his assent to the fitness and 170reasonableness of his governing all his actions by the law or rule before mentioned, even though his practice, through the prevalence of brutish lusts, be most absurdly contradictory to that assent. That is to say, by the reason of his mind, he cannot but be compelled to own and acknowledge that there is really such an obligation indispensably incumbent upon him; even at the same time that in the actions of his life he is endeavouring to throw it off and despise it: For the judgment and conscience of a man’s own mind, concerning the reasonableness and fitness of the thing, that his actions should be conformed to such or such a rule or law, is the truest and formallest obligation, even more properly and strictly so than any opinion whatsoever of the authority of the giver of a law, or any regard he may have to its sanction by rewards and punishments. For whoever acts contrary to this sense and conscience of his own mind, is necessarily self-condemned; and the greatest and strongest of all obligations is that which a man cannot break through without condemning himself. The dread of superior power and authority, and the sanction of rewards and punishments, however, indeed, absolutely necessary to the government of frail and fallible creatures, and truly the most effectual means of keeping them in their duty, is yet really in itself only a secondary and additional obligation or enforcement of the first. The original obligation of all (the ambiguous use of which word, as a term of art, has caused some perplexity and confusion in this matter,) is the eternal reason of things; that reason, which God himself, who has no superior to direct him, and to whose happiness nothing can be added nor any thing diminished from it, yet constantly obliges himself to govern the world by: And the more excellent and perfect (or the freer from corruption and depravation) any creatures are, the more cheerfully and steadily are their wills always determined by this supreme obligation, in conformity to the nature, and in imitation of the most perfect will of God: So far, therefore, as men 171are conscious of what is right and wrong, so far they are under an obligation to act accordingly; and, consequently, that eternal rule of right which I have been hereto describing, it is evident ought as indispensably to govern men’s actions, as it cannot but necessarily determine their assent.

Now that the case is truly thus; that the eternal And from the judgment of mens’ consciences upon their own past actions. differences of good and evil, the unalterable rule of right and equity, do necessarily and unavoidably determine the judgment, and force the assent of all men that use any consideration, is undeniably manifest from the universal experience of mankind; for no man willingly and deliberately transgresses this rule in any great and considerable instance, but he acts contrary to the judgment and reason of his own mind, and secretly reproaches himself for so doing: And no man observes and obeys it steadily, especially in cases of difficulty and temptation, when it interferes with any present interest, pleasure, or passion, but his own mind commends and applauds him for his resolution in executing what his conscience could not forbear giving its assent to, as just and right: And this is what St. Paul means, when he says, (Rom. ii. 14, 15,) that when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves; which show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the meanwhile accusing, or else excusing one another.

It Of that natural knowledge which Plato thought to be reminiscence. was a very wise observation of Plato, which he received from Socrates, that if you take a young man, impartial and unprejudiced, one that never had any learning, nor any experience in the world, and examine him about the natural relations and proportions of things, [or the moral differences of good and evil,] you may, only by asking him questions, without teaching him any thing at all directly, cause him to express in his answers just and adequate notions of geometrical truths, [and true and exact determinations 172concerning matters of right and wrong.] From whence he thought it was to be concluded, that all knowledge and learning is nothing but memory, or only a recollecting, upon every new occasion, what had been before known in a state of pre-existence. And some others, both ancients and moderns, have concluded that the ideas of all first and simple truths, either natural or moral, are innate and originally impressed or stamped upon the mind. In their inference from the observation, the authors of both these opinions seem to be mistaken; but thus much it proves unavoidably,—that the differences, relations, and proportions of things, both natural and moral, in which all unprejudiced minds thus naturally agree, are certain, unalterable, and real in the things themselves, and do not at all depend on the variable opinions, fancies, or imaginations of men prejudiced by education, laws, customs, or evil practices: And also that the mind of man naturally and unavoidably gives its assent, as to natural and geometrical truth, so also to the moral differences of things, and to the fitness and reasonableness of the obligation of the everlasting law of righteousness, whenever fairly and plainly proposed.

Some men, The most profligate men not utterly insensible of the difference of good and evil. indeed, who, by means of a very evil and vicious education, or through a long habit of wickedness and debauchery, have extremely corrupted the principles of their nature, and have long accustomed themselves to bear down their own reason by the force of prejudice, lust, and passion, that they may not be forced to confess themselves self-condemned, will confidently and absolutely contend that they do not really see any natural and necessary difference between what we call right and wrong, just and unjust; that the reason and judgment of their own mind does not tell them they are under any such indispensable obligations as we would endeavour to persuade them; and that they are not sensible they ought to be governed by any other rule than their own will and pleasure. But even 173these men, the most abandoned of all mankind, however industriously they endeavour to conceal and deny their self-condemnation, yet they cannot avoid making a discovery of it sometimes when they are not aware of it. For example, there is no man so vile and desperate who commits at any time a murder and robbery, with the most unrelenting mind, but would choose,118118   Quis est enim, aut quis unquam fuit, aut avaritia tam ardente aut tam effrænatis cupiditatibus, ut eandem illam rem, quam adspici scelere quovis velit, non multis partibus malit ad sese, etiam omni impunitate proposita, sine facinore, quam illo modo pervenire?Cic. de Finib. lib. 3. if such a thing could be proposed to him to obtain all the same profit or advantage, whatsoever it be that he aims at, without committing the crime, rather than with it, even though he was sure to go unpunished for committing the crime. Nay, I believe there is no man even in Mr Hobbes’s state of nature, and of Mr Hobbes’s own principles, but if he was equally assured of securing his main end, his self-preservation, by either way, would choose to preserve himself rather without destroying all his fellow-creatures, than with it, even supposing all impunity, and all other future conveniences of life, equal in either case. Mr. Hobbes’s own scheme, of men’s agreeing by compact to preserve one another, can hardly be supposed without this. And this plainly evinces, that the mind of man unavoidably acknowledges a natural and necessary difference between good and evil, antecedent to all arbitrary and positive constitution whatsoever.

But Men’s natural sense of eternal moral obligations, proved from the judgment they all pass upon the actions of others. the truth of this, that the mind of man naturally and necessarily assents to the eternal law of righteousness, may still better, and more clearly, and more universally appear, from the judgment that men pass upon each other’s actions, than from what we can discern concerning their consciousness of their own. For men may dissemble and conceal from the world the judgment of their own conscience; nay, by a strange partiality, they may even impose upon 174and deceive themselves, (for who is there that does not sometimes allow himself, nay, and even justify himself in that wherein he condemns another?) But men’s judgments concerning the actions of others, especially where they have no relation to themselves, or repugnance to their interest, are commonly impartial; and from this we may judge what sense men naturally have of the unalterable difference of right and wrong. Now the observation which every one cannot but make in this matter is this; that virtue and true goodness, righteousness and equity, are things so truly noble and excellent, so lovely and venerable in themselves, and do so necessarily approve themselves to the reason and consciences of men, that even those very persons who, by the prevailing power of some interest or lust, are themselves drawn aside out of the paths of virtue,119119   Placet suapte natura, adeoque gratiosa virtus est, ut insitum etiam sit malis probare meliores.Senec. de Benef. lib. 4. can yet hardly ever forbear to give it its true character and commendation in others. And this observation holds true, not only in the generality of vicious men, but very frequently even in the worst sort of them, viz. those who persecute others for being better than themselves. Thus the officers who were sent by the Pharisees to apprehend our Saviour, could not forbear declaring120120   Joh. vii. 46. that he spake as never man spake; and the Roman governor, when he gave sentence that he should be crucified, could not at the same instant forbear openly declaring that he found no fault in him.121121   Joh. xviii. 88. Even in this case men cannot choose but think well of those persons whom the dominion of their lusts will not suffer them to imitate, or whom their present interest and the necessity of their worldly affairs compels them to discourage. They cannot but desire, that they themselves were the men they are not, and wish, with Balaam, that though they imitate not the life, yet at least they might die the death of the righteous, and that their last end might be like theirs. 175 And hence it is that Plato judiciously observes,122122   Οὐ γαρ ὅσον οὐσίας ἀρετῆς ἀπεσφαλμένοι τυγχάνοὐσιν οἱ πολλοὶ, τοσοῦτον καὶ τοῦ κρίνειν τοὺς ἄλλους οἱ πονὴροὶ καὶ ἄχρηστος θεῖνν δέ τι καὶ ἔυστοχόν ἐστι καὶ τοῖσι κακοῖς ὥστε πάμπολλοι καὶ τῶν σφόδρα κακῶν, εὖ τοῖς λόγοις καὶ δέξαις διαροῦνται τους ἀμείνοὐς τῶν ἀνθρώπων καὶ τοὺς χείρους.Plato de Leg. lib. 12. that even the worst of men seldom or never make so wrong judgment concerning persons as they do concerning things, there being in virtue an unaccountable and as it were divine force, which, whatever confusion men endeavour to introduce in things by their vicious discourses and debauched practices, yet almost always compels them to distinguish right concerning persons, and makes them admire and praise just and equitable, and honest men. On the contrary, vice and injustice, profaneness and debauchery, are things so absolutely odious in their own nature, that however they insinuate themselves into the practice, yet they can never gain over to themselves the judgment of mankind. They who do evil, yet see and approve what is good, and condemn in others what they blindly allow in themselves; nay, and very frequently condemn even themselves also, not without great disorder and uneasiness of mind, in those very things wherein they allow themselves. At least, there is hardly any wicked man, but when his own case is represented to him under the person of another, will freely enough pass sentence against the wickedness he himself is guilty of; and, with sufficient severity, exclaim against all iniquity. This shows abundantly, that all variation from the eternal rule of right is absolutely and in the nature of the thing itself to be abhorred and detested, and that the unprejudiced mind of man as naturally disapproves injustice in moral matters, as in natural things it cannot but dissent from falsehood, or dislike incongruities. Even in reading the histories of past and far distant ages, where it is plain we can have no concern for the events of things, nor prejudices concerning the characters of persons; who is there, that does not praise 176 and admire, nay highly esteem, and in his imagination love (as it were) the equity, justice, truth, and fidelity of some persons, and, with the greatest indignation and hatred, detest the barbarity, injustice, and treachery of others? Nay, further, when the prejudices of corrupt minds lie all on the side of injustice, as when we have obtained some very great profit or advantage through another man’s treachery or breach of faith; ye123123   Quis Pullum Numitorem, Fregellanum Proditorem, quanquam reipublicæ nostræ profuit, non odit?Cic. de Finib. lib 5. who is there, that, upon that very occasion, does not (even to a proverb,) dislike the person and the action, how much soever he may rejoice at the event? But when we come ourselves to suffer by iniquity, then where are all the arguments and sophistries by which unjust men, while they are oppressing others, would persuade themselves that they are not sensible of any natural difference between good and evil? When it comes to be these men’s own case to be oppressed by violence, or overreached by fraud, where then are all their pleas against the eternal distinction of right and wrong? How, on the contrary, do they then cry out for equity, and exclaim against injustice? How do they then challenge and object against Providence, and think neither God nor man severe enough, in punishing the violators of right and truth? Whereas if there was no natural and eternal difference between just and unjust, no man could have any reason to complain of injury, any other than what laws and compacts made so; which in innumerable cases will be always to be evaded.

An answer to the objection drawn from the total ignorance of some barbarous nations in matters of morality. There is but one thing that I am sensible of, which can here with any colour be objected against what has been hitherto said concerning the necessity of the mind’s giving its assent to the eternal law of righteousness; and that is, the total ignorance which some whole nations are reported to lie under of the nature and force of these moral obligations. I am not satisfied the matter of fact is true; but if it was, yet 177mere ignorance affords no just objection against the certainty of any truth. Were there upon earth a nation of rational and considerate persons, whose notions concerning moral obligations, and concerning the nature and force of them, were universally and directly contrary to what I have hitherto represented, this would be indeed a weighty objection; but ignorance and stupidity are no arguments against the certainty of any thing. There are many nations and people almost totally ignorant of the plainest mathematical truths; as, of the proportion, for example, of a square to a triangle of the same base and height: And yet these truths are such, to which the mind cannot but give its assent necessarily and unavoidably, as soon as they are distinctly proposed to it. All that this objection proves, therefore, supposing the matter of it to be true, is only this; not, that the mind of man can ever dissent from the rule of right, much less that there is no necessary difference in nature between moral good and evil, any more than it proves that there are no certain and necessary proportions of numbers, lines, or figures; but this it proves only, that men have great need to be taught and instructed in some very plain and easy, as well as certain truths; and if they be important truths, that then men have need also to have them frequently inculcated, and strongly enforced upon them: Which is very true; and is (as shall hereafter be particularly made to appear,) one good argument for the reasonableness of expecting a revelation.

4. Of the principal moral obligations in particular. Thus it appears, in general, that the mind of man cannot avoid giving its assent to the eternal law of righteousness, that is, cannot but acknowledge the reasonableness and fitness of men’s governing all their actions by the rule of right or equity; and also that this assent is a formal obligation upon every man, actually and constantly to conform himself to that rule. I might now from hence deduce, in particular, all the several duties of morality or natural religion; but, because this would take up too large 178a portion of my intended discourse, and may easily be supplied abundantly out of several-late excellent writers, I shall only mention the three great and principal branches from which all the other and smaller instances of duty do naturally flow, or may without difficulty be derived.

First, Of piety, or men's duty towards God. then; in respect of God, the rule of righteousness is, that we keep up constantly in our minds the highest possible honour, esteem, and veneration for him, which must express itself in proper and respective influences upon all our passions, and in the suitable direction of all our actions;—that we worship and adore him, and him alone, as the only supreme author, preserver, and governor of all things;—that we employ our whole being, and all our powers and faculties in his service, and for his glory, that is, in encouraging the practice of universal righteousness, and promoting the designs of his divine goodness amongst men, in such way and manner as shall at any time appear to be his will we should do it;—and, finally, that, to enable us to do this continually, we pray unto him constantly for whatever we stand in need of, and return him continual and hearty thanks for whatever good things we at any time receive. There is no congruity or proportion in the uniform disposition and correspondent order of any bodies or magnitudes, no fitness or agreement in the application of similar and equal geometrical figures one to another, or in the comparing them one with another, so visible and conspicuous as is the beauty and harmony of the exercise of God’s several attributes, meeting with suitable returns of duty and honour from all his rational creatures throughout the universe;—the consideration of his eternity and infinity, his knowledge and his wisdom, necessarily commands our highest admiration;—the sense of his omnipresence forces a perpetual, awful regard towards him;—his supreme authority, as being the creator, preserver, and absolute governor of all things, obliges us to pay him all possible honour 179and veneration, adoration, and worship, and his unity requires that it be paid to him alone;—his power and justice demand our fear;—his mercy and placableness encourage our hope;—his goodness necessarily excites our love;—his veracity and unchangeableness secure our trust in him;—the sense of our having received our being, and all our powers from him, makes it infinitely reasonable that we should employ our whole being and all our faculties in his service;—the consciousness of our continual dependence upon him both for our preservation and the supply of every thing we want, obliges us to constant prayer;—and every good thing we enjoy, the air we breathe, and the food we eat, the rain from heaven, and the fruitful seasons, all the blessings and comforts of the present time, and the hopes and expectations we have of what is to come, do all demand our heartiest gratitude and thanksgiving to him.124124   Quem vero astrorum ordines, quem dierum noctiumque vicissitudines, quem mensium temperatio, quemque ea quæ gignuntur nobis ad fruendum, non gratum esse cogant; hnnc hominem omnino numerare qui decet?Cic. de Legib. lib. 2. The suitableness and proportion, the correspondency and connexion of each of these things respectively, is as plain and conspicuous as the shining of the sun at noon-day;125125   Ἐι γὰρ νοῦν εἴχομεν, ἄλλό τι ἔδει ἡμᾶς ποιεῖν καὶ κοινῇ καὶ ἰδίᾳ, ἢ ὐμνεῖν τὸ θεῖον, καὶ ἐυφημεῖν, καὶ ἐπεξέρχεσθαι τὰς χάρι9τας; Ὀυκ ἔδει καὶ σκάπτοντας καὶ ἀροῦντας καὶ ἐσθίοντας ἄδειν τὸν ὕμνον τὸν ἐις τὸν θεόν· Μέγας ὁ θεὸς, ὅτι ἡμῖν παρέσχεν οργανα ταῦτα δὶ ὧν τὴν γῆν ἐργασόμεθα; Μέγας ὁ θεὸς, ὅτι χεῖρας δέδωκεν, &c.—Arrian. lib. 1. cap. 16. and it is the greatest absurdity and perverseness in the world for creatures, indued with reason, to attempt to break through and transgress this necessary order and dependency of things: All inanimate and all irrational beings, by the necessity of their nature, constantly obey the laws of their creation, and tend regularly to the ends for which they were appointed; how monstrous then is it that reasonable creatures, merely because they are not necessitated, should abuse that glorious privilege of liberty by which they are exalted 180in dignity above the rest of God’s creation, to make themselves the alone unreasonable and disorderly part of the universe!—that a tree planted in a fruitful soil, and watered continually with the dew of heaven, and cherished constantly with the kindly warmth and benign influence of the sunbeams, should yet never bring forth either leaves or fruit, is in no degree so irregular, and contrary to nature, as that a rational being, created after the image of God, and conscious of God’s doing every thing for him that becomes the relation of an infinitely good and bountiful Creator to his creatures, should yet never on his part make any return of those duties which arise necessarily from the relation of a creature to his Creator.

Secondly. Of righteousness or the duty of men one towards another. In respect of our fellow-creatures, the rule of righteousness is; that in particular we so deal with every man, as in like circumstances we could reasonably expect he should deal with us, and that in general we endeavour, by an universal benevolence, to promote the welfare and happiness of all men: The former branch of this rule is equity, the latter is love.

Of justice and equity. As to the former, viz. equity; the reason which obliges every man in practice, so to deal always with another as he would reasonably expect that others should in like circumstances deal with him, is the very same as that which forces him, in speculation, to affirm, that if one line or number be equal to another, that other is reciprocally equal to it. Iniquity is the very same in action as falsity or contradiction in theory, and the same cause which makes the one absurd makes the other unreasonable. Whatever relation or proportion one man in any case bears to another, the same that other, when put in like circumstances, bears to him. 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. And to deny this either in word or action, is as if a man should contend, that though two and three are equal to five, yet five are not equal to 181two and three.126126   Nihil est unum uni tam simile, tam par, quam omnes inter nosmetipsos sumus. Quod, si depravatio consuetudinum, si opinionum vanitas, non imbecillitatem animorum torqueret, et flecteret quocunque cæpisset; sui nemo ipse tam similis esset, quam omnes sunt omnium;—et coleretur jus æque ab omnibus.Cic. de Leg. lib. 1. Wherefore, were not men strangely and most unnaturally corrupted by perverse and unaccountably false opinions, and monstrous evil customs and habits, prevailing against the clearest and plainest reason in the world, it would be impossible that universal equity should not be practised by all mankind, and especially among equals, where the proportion of equity is simple and obvious, and every man’s own case is already the same with all others, without any nice comparing or transposing of circumstances. It would be as impossible127127   Hoc exigit ipsa naturæ ratio, quæ est lex divina et humana, cui parere qui velit, nunquam committet ut alienum appetat, et id, quod alteri detraxerit, sibi assumat.Cic. de Offic. lib. 3. that a man, contrary to the eternal reason of things, should desire to gain some small profit to himself, by doing violence and damage to his neighbour, as that he should be willing to be deprived of necessaries himself, to satisfy the unreasonable covetousness or ambition of another. In a word, it would be impossible for men not to be as much ashamed of doing iniquity, as they are of believing contradictions. In considering indeed the duties of superiors in various relations, the proportion of equity is somewhat more complex, but still it may always be deduced from the same rule of doing as we would be done by, if careful regard be had at the same time to the difference of relation; that is, if, in considering what is fit for you to do to another, you always take into the account, not only every circumstance of the action, but also every circumstance wherein the person differs from you, and in judging what you would desire that another, if your circumstances were transposed, should do to you, you always consider not what any 182unreasonable passion or private interest would prompt you, but what impartial reason would dictate to you to desire. For example, a magistrate, in order to deal equitably with a criminal, is not to consider what fear or self-love would cause him in the criminal’s case to desire, but what reason and the public good would oblige him to acknowledge was fit and just for him to expect. And the same proportion is to be observed in deducing the duties of parents and children, of masters and servants, of governors and subjects, of citizens and foreigners, in what manner every person is obliged, by the rule of equity, to behave himself in each of these and all other relations. In the regular and uniform practice of all which duties among all mankind, in their several and respective relations, through the whole earth, consists that universal justice which is the top and perfection of all virtues: which, if, as Plato says,128128   Δεινοὺς γὰρ ἂν παρεῖχεν ἔρωτας, ἔιτι τοίουτον ἐαυτῆς ἐναργες ἔιδωλον παρείχετο, &c.—Plat. in Phæd.
   Quæ si oculis cerneretur, mirabiles amores, ut ait Plato, excitaret sui.Cic. de Offic. lib. 1.

   Oculorum est in nobis sensus acerrimus, quibus sapientiam non cernimus; quà m illa ardentes amores excitaret sui, si videretur!Id. de fin. l. 2.
it could be represented visibly to mortal eyes, would raise in us an inexpressible love and admiration of it; which would introduce into the world such a glorious and happy state as the ancient poets have attempted to describe in their fiction of a golden age; which in itself is so truly beautiful and lovely, that, as Aristotle129129   Ἅυτη μεν οὐν ἡ δικαιοσύνη, ἀρετὴ μεν ἐστι τελεία· καὶ οὐθ᾽ Ἕσπερος οὐθ᾽ Ἑῶος οὕτω θαυμαστόν.Ethic. lib. 5. c. 3. elegantly expresses it, the motions of the heavenly bodies are not so admirably regular and harmonious, nor the brightness of the sun and stars so ornamental to the visible fabric of the world, as the universal practice of this illustrious virtue would be conducive to the glory and advantage of the rational part of this lower creation; which, lastly, is so truly noble and excellent in its own nature, that the wisest and 183most considering men have always declared,130130   Non enim mihi est vita mea utilior, quam animi talis affectio, neminem ut violem commodi mei gratia.Cic. de Offic. lib. 3.
   Detrahere aliquid alteri, et hominem hominis incommodo suum augere commodum, magis est contra naturam, quà m mors, quà m paupertas, quà m dolor, quà m cætera quæ possunt aut corpori accidere, aut rebus externis.Id.
that neither life itself, nor131131   Καὶ το παράπαν ζῆν, μέγιστον μὲν κακὸν, τὸν ξὐμπαντα χρὀνον ἀθάνατον ὄντα, καὶ κεκτημένον πάντα τὰ λεγόμενα ἀγαθὰ, πλὴν δικαιοσύνης τε καὶ ἀρετῆς ἀπάσης.Plato de Leg. lib. 2. all other possible enjoyments in the world, put together, are of any value or esteem in comparison of, or in competition with, that right temper and disposition of mind from which flows the practice of this universal justice and equity. On the contrary, injustice and iniquity, violence, fraud, and oppression, the universal confusion of right and wrong, and the general neglect and contempt of all the duties arising from men’s several relations one to another, is the greatest and most unnatural corruption of God’s creation that it is possible for depraved and rebellious creatures to introduce: As they themselves who practise iniquity most, and are most desirous to defend it, yet whenever it comes to be their own turn to suffer by it, are not very backward to acknowledge. To comprise this matter, therefore, in one word; what the sun’s forsaking that equal course, which now, by diffusing gentle warmth and light, cherishes and invigorates every thing in a due proportion through the whole system, and on the contrary, his burning up, by an irregular and disorderly motion, some of the orbs with insupportable heat, and leaving others to perish in extreme cold and darkness; what this, I say, would be to the natural world, that very same thing, injustice, and tyranny, iniquity, and all wickedness, is to the moral and rational part of the creation. The only difference is this; that the one is an obstinate and wilful corruption, and most perverse depravation of creatures made after the image of God, and a violating the 184eternal and unalterable law or reason of things, which is of the utmost importance; whereas the other would be only a revolution or change, of the arbitrary and temporary frame of nature.

Of universal mutual benevolence. The second branch of the rule of righteousness, with respect to our fellow-creatures, I said, was universal love or benevolence; that is, not only the doing barely what is just and right in our dealings with every man, but also a constant endeavouring to promote, in general, to the utmost of our power, the welfare and happiness of all men. The obligation to which duty, also, may easily be deduced from what has been already laid down. For if (as has been before proved) there be a natural and necessary difference between good and evil, and that which is good is fit and reasonable, and that which is evil is unreasonable to be done; and that which is the greatest good, is always the most fit and reasonable to be chosen: Then, as the goodness of God extends itself universally over all his works through the whole creation, by doing always what is absolutely best in the whole; so every rational creature ought, in its sphere and station, according to its respective powers and faculties, to do all the good it can to all its fellow-creatures. To which end, universal love and benevolence is as plainly the most direct, certain, and effectual means, as132132    Universaliter autem verum est, quod non certius, fluxus puncti lineam producit aut additio numerorum summam, quam quod benevolentia effectum præstat bonum.Cumberland. de Leg. Naturæ, page 10.
   Pari sane ratione [ac in arithmeticis operationibus] doctrinæ moralis veritas fundatur in immutabili cohærentia inter felicitatem summam quam hominum vires assequi valent, et actus benevolentiæ universalis.Id ibid. page 23.

   Eadem est mensura boni malique, quæ mensura est veri falsique in propositionibus pronuntiantibus de efficacia motum ad rerum aliarum conservationem, et corruptionem facientium.Id. page 30.
in mathematics the flowing of a point is to produce a line, or, in arithmetic, the addition of 185numbers to produce a sum; or in physics, certain kind of motions to preserve certain bodies, which other kinds of motions tend to corrupt. Of all which, the mind of man is so naturally sensible, that, except in such men whose affections are prodigiously corrupted by most unnatural and habitual vicious practices, there is no duty whatsoever, the performance whereof affords a man so ample pleasure133133   Angusta admodum est circa nostra tantummodo commoda, lætitiæ matria; sed eadem erit amplissima, si aliorum omnium felicitas cordi nobis sit. Quippe hæc ad illam eandem habebit proportionem, quam habet immensa beatitudo Dei, totiusque humani generis, ad curtam illam fictæ felicitatis supellectilem, quam uni homini, eique invido et malevolo, fortunæ bona possint suppeditare.Id. ibid. page 214. and satisfaction, and fills his mind with so comfortable a sense of his having done the greatest good he was capable to do, of his having best answered the ends of his creation, and nearliest imitated the perfections of his Creator, and consequently of his having fully complied with the highest and principal obligations of his nature; as the performance of this one duty, of universal love and benevolence, naturally affords. But further; the obligation to this great duty may also otherwise be deduced from the nature of man, in the following manner. Next to that natural self-love, or care of his own preservation, which every one necessarily has in the first place for himself, there is in all men a certain natural affection for their children and posterity, who have a dependence upon them; and for their near relations and friends, who have an intimacy with them. And because the nature of man is such, that they cannot live comfortably in independent families, without still further society and commerce with each other; therefore they naturally desire to increase their dependences, by multiplying affinities, and to enlarge their friendships by mutual good offices, and to establish societies by 186a communication of arts and labour, till,134134   In omni honesto, nihil est tam illustre, nec quod latius pateat, quam conjunctio inter homines hominum, et quasi quædam societas et communicatio utilitatum, et ipsa charitas generis humani; quæ nata a primo satu, quo a procreatoribus nati diliguntur,——serpit sensim foras, cognationibus primum,——deinde totius complexu gentis humanæ.Cic. de Finib. lib. 5. by degrees, the affection of single persons becomes a friendship of families, and this enlarges itself to society of towns, and cities, and nations, and terminates in the agreeing community of all mankind: The foundation, preservation, and perfection of which universal friendship or society is mutual love and benevolence. And nothing hinders the world from being actually put into so happy a state but perverse iniquity, and unreasonable want of mutual charity. Wherefore, since men are plainly so constituted by nature, that they stand in need of each other’s assistance to make themselves easy in the world, and are fitted to live in communities, and society is absolutely necessary for them, and mutual love and benevolence is the only possible means to establish this society in any tolerable and durable manner; and in this respect135135   Nihil est unum uni tam simile, tam par, quam omnes inter nosmetipsos sumus. Quod nisi depravatio, &c. sui nemo ipse tam similis esset, quam omnes sunt omnium.Cic. de Legib. lib. 1. all men stand upon the same level, and have the same natural wants and desires, and are in the same need of each other’s help, and are equally capable of enjoying the benefit and advantage of society, it is evident every man is bound by the law of his nature, and as he is also prompted by the136136   Impellimur autem natura, ut prodesse velimus quamplurimis.Cic. de Finib. lib. 3. inclination of his uncorrupted affections, to137137   Hominem esse quasi partem quandam civitatis et universi generis humani, eumque esse conjunctum cum hominibus humana quadam societate.Cic. Quæst. Academ. lib. 1. look upon himself as a part and member of that one universal body or community which is made up of all mankind, to think 187himself138138   Homines hominum causa sunt generati, ut ipsi inter se alii aliis prodesse possint.Cic. de Offic. lib. 1.
   Ad tuendos conservandosque homines, hominem natum esse.Cic. de Finib. lib 3.
born to promote the public good and welfare of all his fellow-creatures, and consequently obliged, as the necessary and only effectual means to that end, to139139   Omnes inter se naturali quadam indulgentia et benevolentia contineri.Cic. de Legib. lib. 1. embrace them all with universal love and benevolence, so that he cannot,140140   Ex quo efficitur, hominem naturæ obedientem, homini nocere non posse.Cic. de Offic. lib. 3. without acting contrary to the reason of his own mind, and transgressing the plain and known law of his being, do willingly any hurt and mischief to any man, no, not even to those who have first injured him,141141   Οὔτε

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