Propositions 48-58: Other emotions

Proposition 48. The emotions of over-esteem and disparagement are always bad. Proof: These emotions (see Def. of the Emotions, 21. 22) are repugnant to reason; and are therefore (4.26. 4.27.) bad. Q.E.D. Proposition 49. Over-esteem is apt to render its object proud. Proof: If we see that any one rates us too highly, for love's sake, we are apt to become elated (3.41), or to be pleasurably affected (Def. of the Emotions, 30.). Proposition 50. Pity, in a man who lives under the guidance of reason, is in itself bad and useless. Proof: Pity (Def. of the Emotions, 18.) is a pain, and therefore (4.41) is in itself bad. Note: He who rightly realizes, that all things follow from the necessity of the divine nature, and come to pass in accordance with the eternal laws and rules of nature, will not find anything worthy of hatred, derision, or contempt, nor will he bestow pity on anything, but to the utmost extent of human virtue he will endeavour to do well, as the saying is, and to rejoice.   Proposition 51. Approval is not repugnant to reason, but can agree therewith and arise therefrom. Proof: Approval is love towards one who has done good to another (Def. of the Emotions, 19). Another Proof: He, who lives under the guidance of reason, desires for others the good which he seeks for himself (4.37). Note: Indignation as we defined it (Def. of the Emotions, 20) is necessarily evil (4.45).   Proposition 52. Self-approval may arise from reason, and that which arises from reason is the highest possible. Proof: Self-approval is pleasure arising from a man's contemplation of himself and his own power of action (Def. of the Emotions, 25). Note: Self-approval is in reality the highest object for which we can hope.   Proposition 53. Humility is not a virtue, or does not arise from reason. Proof: Humility is pain arising from a man's contemplation of his own infirmities (Def. of the Emotions, 26).

[14] Land reads: "Quod ipsius agendi potentia juvatur"—which I have translated above. He suggests as alternative readings to 'quod', 'quo' (= whereby) and 'quodque' (= and that).

  Proposition 54. Repentance is not a virtue, or does not arise from reason; but he who repents of an action is doubly wretched or infirm. Proof: The first part of this proposition is proved like the foregoing one. Note: As men seldom live under the guidance of reason, these two emotions, namely, Humility and Repentance, as also Hope and Fear, bring more good than harm;   Proposition 55. Extreme pride or dejection indicates extreme ignorance of self. Proof: This is evident from Def. of the Emotions, 28 and 29.   Proposition 56. Extreme pride or dejection indicates extreme infirmity of spirit. Proof: The first foundation of virtue is self-preservation (4.22. Coroll.) under the guidance of reason (4.24). Corollary: Hence it most clearly follows, that the proud and the dejected specially fall a prey to the emotions. Note: Yet dejection can be more easily corrected than pride;   Proposition 57. The proud man delights in the company of flatterers and parasites, but hates the company of the high-minded. Proof: Pride is pleasure arising from a man's over estimation of himself (Def. of the Emotions, 28 and 6); Note: It would be too long a task to enumerate here all the evil results of pride, inasmuch as the proud are a prey to all the emotions, though to none of them less than to love and pity.   Proposition 58. Honour (gloria) is not repugnant to reason, but may arise therefrom. Proof: This is evident from Def. of the Emotions, 30 and also from the definition of an honourable man (4.37 note. 1). Note: Empty honour, as it is styled, is self-approval, fostered only by the good opinion of the populace.