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Click on the phrases to see them in context. The original texts by Immanuel Kant and David Hume are available from the Gutenberg Projet.
. In saying, then, that the sentiments of vice and virtue are natural in this sense, we make no very extraordinary discovery. I see no contradiction in supposing a desire of producing misery annexed to love, and of happiness to hatred. While a warm imagination is allowed to enter into philosophy, and hypotheses embraced merely for being specious and agreeable, we can never have any steady principles, nor any sentiments, which will suit with common practice and experience. This principle is that, of every two contradictorily opposed predicates, only one can belong to a conception. It is an aggravation of a murder, that it was committed upon persons asleep and in perfect security; as historians readily observe of any infant prince, who is captive in the hands of his enemies, that he is the more worthy of compassion the less sensible he is of his miserable condition. In this latter case, the conditions do not exist in the series of phenomena, but may be placed quite out of and beyond it, and the series of conditions may be regarded as if it had an absolute beginning from an intelligible cause. Since, therefore, these two particulars are easily separated and there is a necessity for their conjunction, in order to produce the passion, we ought to consider them as component parts of the cause; and infix in our minds an exact idea of this distinction. It is too weak to take hold of the mind, or be attended with emotion. But we feel persuaded that we are able to proceed beyond a conception, and to extend our cognition a priorI. We attempt this in two ways--either, through the pure understanding, in relation to that which may become an object of experience, or, through pure reason, in relation to such properties of things, or of the existence of things, as can never be presented in any experience.