Adam Smith's Simplified Theory of Moral Sentiments, Part 1, Section 2, Chapter 5: The Selfish Feelings

Chapter 5: The Selfish Feelings

The Selfish feelings are in between the Social and Unsocial feelings

32 Our grief and joy of our own fortune makes up the feelings which are in between the social and unsocial ones.

Humans sympathize more with sorrow than joy

However, the difference between grief and joy is that we are most disposed to sympathize with small joys and great sorrows.


1.2.33. However, mankind more readily sympathizes with those smaller joys flowing from less important causes.


1.2.34. It is quite otherwise with grief.


1.2.35. On the contrary, our sympathy with deep distress is very strong and sincere.

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Next: Part 1, Section 3, Chapter 1: Effects of Prosperity on Morality