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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.


If we review our cognitions in their entire extent, we shall find that the peculiar business of reason is to arrange them into a system, that is to say, to give them connection according to a principle.

 So far, therefore, our civil duties are connected with our natural, that the former are invented chiefly for the sake of the latter; and that the principal object of government is to constrain men to observe the laws of nature. A figure, which is not justly ballanced, is disagreeable; and that because it conveys the ideas of its fall, of harm, and of pain: Which ideas are painful, when by sympathy they acquire any degree of force and vivacity. This is done, however, entirely a priori and by means of pure reason, so that, as this individual figure is determined under certain universal conditions of construction, the object of the conception, to which this individual figure corresponds as its schema, must be cogitated as universally determined. In seeking for phenomena to prove this proposition, I find only those of two kinds; but in each kind the phenomena are obvious, numerous, and conclusive. The removal of either of these destroys the passion; which evidently proves that the cause Is a compounded one. When I am convinced of any principle, it is only an idea, which strikes more strongly upon me. The imagination has a set of passions belonging to it, upon which our sentiments of beauty much depend. We consider not whether the persons, affected by the qualities, be our acquaintance or strangers, countrymen or foreigners.