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Of Avarice(论贪婪)

(2006-12-21 10:32:34)

        The best excuse that can be made for avarice is, that it generally prevails in old men, or in men of cold tempers, where all the other affections are extinct; and the mind being incapable of remaining without some passion or pursuit, at last finds out this monstrously absurd one, which suits the coldness and inactivity of its temper. At the same time, it seems very extraordinary, that so frosty, spiritless a passion should be able to carry us further than all the warmth of youth and pleasure. But if we look more narrowly into the matter, we shall find, that this very circumstance renders the explication of the case more easy. When the temper is warm and full of vigour, it naturally shoots out more ways than one, and produces inferior passions to counterbalance, in some degree, its predominant inclination. It is impossible for a person of that temper, however bent on any pursuit, to be deprived of all sense of shame, or all regard to sentiments of mankind. His friends must have some influence over him; and other considerations are apt to have their weight. All this serves to restrain him within some bounds. But it is no wonder that the avaricious man, being, from the coldness of his temper, without regard to reputation, to friendship, or to pleasure, should be carried so far by his prevailing inclination, and should display his passion in such surprising instances.

                                                                                                                                              By David Hume

 

    为贪婪找到的最好的注解就是,在年老之人中,或在冷酷之人中是其盛行之所,这两种人除了贪婪之外,其他情感无迹可寻;热情和追求在其思想中荡然无存,终究而言,贪婪是极其荒谬的,冷酷、不活跃是它的标签。然而,令人惊奇的是情感的冷酷,无精打采比洋溢青春的热情和愉悦更能左右我们。但是如果仔细的审视,我们会发觉,正是这样的情况使得对事情的解释变的容易了。平常之时,平和的情绪驻留你我之身,而情绪热情,充满活力时,自然地会比冷漠时冒出更多的想法来,但也会过犹不及。对于这样的一种人,不顾廉耻,缺乏情感,而醉心于什么追求上,简直不可能。他的朋友们一定会影响到他;其他的事情也会找上门。也一切在一定程度上圈住了他。但是,贪婪之人,恰由于冷酷,不吝名声,友谊,还有愉悦,被贪婪左右着,欲陷欲深,用一种令人瞠目的方式表演着,也就不难理解了。

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