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The Philosophy of Misery

or, The System of Economic Contradictions

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Author: P. J. Proudhon
Published: 1846
Language: English
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 44
LoC Categories: B, HC
Downloads: 1,827 5777
Genre: Philosophy

of this society of which he is a part, private wills and associative deliberations have some influence; and he says to himself that the Great Spirit does not act upon the world directly and by himself, or arbitrarily and at the dictation of a capricious will, but mediately, by perceptible means or organs, and by virtue of laws. And, retracing in his mind the chain of effects and causes, he places clear at the extremity, as a balance, God.

A poet has said,--

Par dela tous les cieux, le Dieu des cieux reside.

Thus, at the first step in the theory, the Supreme Being is reduced to the function of a motive power, a mainspring, a corner-stone, or, if a still more trivial comparison may be allowed me, a constitutional sovereign, reigning but not governing, swearing to obey the law and appointing ministers to execute it. But, under the influence of the mirage which fascinates him, the theist sees, in this ridiculous system, only a new proof of the sublimity of his idol; who, in his opinion, uses



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