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25. The Order of Occurence Among the Passions of the Soul

1. Concupiscible passion, which tends simply to an end, precedes irascible passion, which is aroused by difficulty in achieving the end. Thus desire for a thing precedes the courage with which one faces difficulty in obtaining the thing. But concupiscible passion, which rests or is quiet in an end attained or lost (joy; sorrow) follows the irascible passion which overcame difficulty or succumbed to it. Hence, in passions of movement concupiscible precedes irascible; in passions of repose irascible precedes concupiscible.

2. In the order of execution, that is, in the carrying out of the drive of passion, love of the end sought comes first, then follows desire, then comes joy in the end attained or sorrow in its loss. But in the order of intention, the thing first wanted is joy in the object attained; by this anticipated joy, love and desire are aroused.

3. The first of the irascible passions is hope. Hope looks for a good to come, but involves knowledge that difficulty may lie in the way, and that the end hoped for may not, as a fact, be achieved. A person does not have hope for what is certainly to come; thus no one hopes that tomorrow will come, although he may desire its coming.

4. The four principal passions after love are joy, sorrow, hope, and fear; love is the fundamental passion. Joy and sorrow mark the subsiding of the passions; hope and fear direct their movement. Joy and sorrow are in things present; hope and fear are for things to come.

"God gives us some things, as the beginning of faith, even when we do not pray. Other things, such as perseverance, he has only provided for those who pray."
St Augustine

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"What good does it do to speak learnedly about the Trinity if, lacking humility, you displease the Trinity? Indeed it is not learning that makes a man holy and just, but a virtuous life makes him pleasing to God. "
Thomas á Kempis

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"Whom do you seek, friend, if you seek not God? Seek him, find him, cleave to him; bind your will to his with bands of steel and you will live always at peace in this life and in the next."
St Alphonsus de Liguori

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