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Order, Earnestness, and Moral Purpose, are fundamental Principles of human action; in whatever manner he arrives at this conviction, he will be able to go along with me from this point; and to follow me into the Doctrines of the Morality of Reason, the Morality of Religion, Polity, and International Law.
I hope the Reader will find the convenience which I seem to myself to have found, in the Division of the general trunk of Morality into Five Branches :: Jurisprudence ; the Morality of Reason ; the Morality of Religion ; Polity; International Law.. These five provinces, though intimately connected, appear to be distinct, and their boundaries well defined. The subjects belonging to each, and even the general style of treating them, are different. I hope, in particular, that the separation of the Morality of Religion from that of mere Reason, will be considered an improvement. It enables us to trace the guidance of human Reason, consistently and continuously, retaining a due sense of the superior authority of Religion ; and it shows that, in many places, this guidance of human Reason is insufficient without Religion, and points to Religion as a necessary higher guide.
By going through the subject in this shape, I have been unavoidably led to treat of subjects which are of a professional kind; and in which, therefore, an unprofessional writer is in great danger of errour. This is especially the case with the first subject, Jurisprudence. I can scarcely hope that Jurists and Lawyers will not find, in what I have written, mistakes as to laws and legal expressions. These I hope they will pardon ; seeing what I trust I have made manifest, that some details on that subject were an essential part of my plan. This portion of my work has had the great advantage of being read and remarked on by my friend Mr. William Empson. I have taken the liberty of using some of his remarks, especially in the Notes on this Second Book. To him I am indebted also for a general reference to the Act of Crimes and Punishments, now under the consideration of the Legislature; of which I have made some use. Besides the common English law-books, I have referred to some American ones, especially Chancellor Kent's Commentaries on American Law, Judge Story's Commentaries on Equity, and his Conflict of Laws. In the Fifth Book, on Polity, I have made free use of many excellent works of my Contemporaries; especially Mr. Hallam's Middle Ages, and English Constitution ; Mr. Allen's Inquiry into the Royal Prerogative; Sir Francis Palgrave's History of the English Commonwealth ; Mr. Jones's work on Rent, and (particularly in the Chapter on the Representative System) Lord Brougham's Political Philosophy.
I have necessarily had to deliver opinions which bear, more or less closely, upon questions now agitated with a view to practical results. In doing this, I trust that I have said nothing but what belongs to a system of Morality, and that I shall be judged merely as a Moralist.
3. The Mental Desires.
56. Approbation and Disapprobation.
60. The Desire of our oron Approval.