Summa Th. I-II EN Qu.44
We must now consider the effects of fear: under which head there are four points of inquiry:
(1) Whether fear causes contraction?
(2) Whether it makes men suitable for counsel?
(3) Whether it makes one tremble?
(4) Whether it hinders action?
Objection: 1. It would seem that fear does not cause contraction. For when contraction takes place, the heat and vital spirits are withdrawn inwardly. But accumulation of heat and vital spirits in the interior parts of the body, dilates the heart unto endeavors of daring, as may be seen in those who are angered: while the contrary happens in those who are afraid. Therefore fear does not cause contraction.
2. Further, when, as a result of contraction, the vital spirits and heat are accumulated in the interior parts, man cries out, as may be seen in those who are in pain. But those who fear utter nothing: on the contrary they lose their speech. Therefore fear does not cause contraction.
3. Further, shame is a kind of fear, as stated above (Question , Article ). But "those who are ashamed blush," as Cicero (De Quaest. Tusc. iv, 8), and the Philosopher (Ethic. iv, 9) observe. But blushing is an indication, not of contraction, but of the reverse. Therefore contraction is not an effect of fear.
On the contrary Damascene says (De Fide Orth. ii, 23) that "fear is a power according to (systole)," i.e. contraction.
I answer that As stated above (Question , Article ), in the passions of the soul, the formal element is the movement of the appetitive power, while the bodily transmutation is the material element. Both of these are mutually proportionate; and consequently the bodily transmutation assumes a resemblance to and the very nature of the appetitive movement. Now, as to the appetitive movement of the soul, fear implies a certain contraction: the reason of which is that fear arises from the imagination of some threatening evil which is difficult to repel, as stated above (Question , Article ). But that a thing be difficult to repel is due to lack of power, as stated above (Question , Article ): and the weaker a power is, the fewer the things to which it extends. Wherefore from the very imagination that causes fear there ensues a certain contraction in the appetite. Thus we observe in one who is dying that nature withdraws inwardly, on account of the lack of power: and again we see the inhabitants of a city, when seized with fear, leave the outskirts, and, as far as possible, make for the inner quarters. It is in resemblance to this contraction, which pertains to the appetite of the soul, that in fear a similar contraction of heat and vital spirits towards the inner parts takes place in regard to the body.
Reply to Objection: 1. As the Philosopher says (De Problem. xxvii, 3), although in those who fear, the vital spirits recede from outer to the inner parts of the body, yet the movement of vital spirits is not the same in those who are angry and those who are afraid. For in those who are angry, by reason of the heat and subtlety of the vital spirits, which result from the craving for vengeance, the inward movement has an upward direction: wherefore the vital spirits and heat concentrate around the heart: the result being that an angry man is quick and brave in attacking. But in those who are afraid, on account of the condensation caused by cold, the vital spirits have a downward movement; the said cold being due to the imagined lack of power. Consequently the heat and vital spirits abandon the heart instead of concentrating around it: the result being that a man who is afraid is not quick to attack, but is more inclined to run away.
2. To everyone that is in pain, whether man or animal, it is natural to use all possible means of repelling the harmful thing that causes pain but its presence: thus we observe that animals, when in pain, attack with their jaws or with their horns. Now the greatest help for all purposes, in animals, is heat and vital spirits: wherefore when they are in pain, their nature stores up the heat and vital spirits within them, in order to make use thereof in repelling the harmful object. Hence the Philosopher says (De Problem. xxvii, 9) when the vital spirits and heat are concentrated together within, they require to find a vent in the voice: for which reason those who are in pain can scarcely refrain from crying aloud. On the other hand, in those who are afraid, the internal heat and vital spirits move from the heart downwards, as stated above (ad 1): wherefore fear hinders speech which ensues from the emission of the vital spirits in an upward direction through the mouth: the result being that fear makes its subject speechless. For this reason, too, fear "makes its subject tremble," as the Philosopher says (De Problem. xxvii, 1,6,7).
3. Mortal perils are contrary not only to the appetite of the soul, but also to nature. Consequently in such like fear, there is contraction not only in the appetite, but also in the corporeal nature: for when an animal is moved by the imagination of death, it experiences a contraction of heat towards the inner parts of the body, as though it were threatened by a natural death. Hence it is that "those who are in fear of death turn pale" (Ethic. iv, 9). But the evil that shame fears, is contrary, not to nature, but only to the appetite of the soul. Consequently there results a contraction in this appetite, but not in the corporeal nature; in fact, the soul, as though contracted in itself, is free to set the vital spirits and heat in movement, so that they spread to the outward parts of the body: the result being that those who are ashamed blush.
Objection: 1. It would seem that fear does not make one suitable for counsel. For the same thing cannot be conducive to counsel, and a hindrance thereto. But fear hinders counsel: because every passion disturbs repose, which is requisite for the good use of reason. Therefore fear does not make a man suitable for counsel.
2. Further, counsel is an act of reason, in thinking and deliberating about the future. But a certain fear "drives away all thought, and dislocates the mind," as Cicero observes (De Quaest. Tusc. iv, 8). Therefore fear does not conduce to counsel, but hinders it.
3. Further, just as we have recourse to counsel in order to avoid evil, so do we, in order to attain good things. But whereas fear is of evil to be avoided, so is hope of good things to be obtained. Therefore fear is not more conducive to counsel, than hope is.
On the contrary The Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 5) that "fear makes men of counsel."
I answer that A man of counsel may be taken in two ways. First, from his being willing or anxious to take counsel. And thus fear makes men of counsel. Because, as the Philosopher says (Ethic. iii, 3), "we take counsel on great matters, because therein we distrust ourselves." Now things which make us afraid, are not simply evil, but have a certain magnitude, both because they seem difficult to repel, and because they are apprehended as near to us, as stated above (Question , Article ). Wherefore men seek for counsel especially when they are afraid.Secondly, a man of counsel means one who is apt for giving good counsel: and in this sense, neither fear nor any passion makes men of counsel. Because when a man is affected by a passion, things seem to him greater or smaller than they really are: thus to a lover, what he loves seems better; to him that fears, what he fears seems more dreadful. Consequently owing to the want of right judgment, every passion, considered in itself, hinders the faculty of giving good counsel.
Reply to Objection: 1.This suffices for the Reply to the First Objection.
2. The stronger a passion is, the greater the hindrance is it to the man who is swayed by it. Consequently, when fear is intense, man does indeed wish to take counsel, but his thoughts are so disturbed, that he can find no counsel. If, however, the fear be slight, so as to make a man wish to take counsel, without gravely disturbing the reason; it may even make it easier for him to take good counsel, by reason of his ensuing carefulness.
3. Hope also makes man a good counsellor: because, as the Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 5), "no man takes counsel in matters he despairs of," nor about impossible things, as he says in Ethic. iii, 3. But fear incites to counsel more than hope does. Because hope is of good things, as being possible of attainment; whereas fear is of evil things, as being difficult to repel, so that fear regards the aspect of difficulty more than hope does. And it is in matters of difficulty, especially when we distrust ourselves, that we take counsel, as stated above.
Objection: 1. It would seem that trembling is not an effect of fear. Because trembling is occasioned by cold; thus we observe that a cold person trembles. Now fear does not seem to make one cold, but rather to cause a parching heat: a sign whereof is that those who fear are thirsty, especially if their fear be very great, as in the case of those who are being led to execution. Therefore fear does not cause trembling.
2. Further, faecal evacuation is occasioned by heat; hence laxative medicines are generally warm. But these evacuations are often caused by fear. Therefore fear apparently causes heat; and consequently does not cause trembling.
3. Further, in fear, the heat is withdrawn from the outer to the inner parts of the body. If, therefore, man trembles in his outward parts, through the heat being withdrawn thus; it seems that fear should cause this trembling in all the external members. But such is not the case. Therefore trembling of the body is not caused by fear.
On the contrary Cicero says (De Quaest. Tusc. iv, 8) that "fear is followed by trembling, pallor and chattering of the teeth."
I answer that As stated above (Article ), in fear there takes place a certain contraction from the outward to the inner parts of the body, the result being that the outer parts become cold; and for this reason trembling is occasioned in these parts, being caused by a lack of power in controlling the members: which lack of power is due to the want of heat, which is the instrument whereby the soul moves those members, as stated in De Anima ii, 4.
Reply to Objection: 1. When the heat withdraws from the outer to the inner parts, the inward heat increases, especially in the inferior or nutritive parts. Consequently the humid element being spent, thirst ensues; sometimes indeed the result is a loosening of the bowels, and urinary or even seminal evacuation. Or else such like evacuations are due to contraction of the abdomen and testicles, as the Philosopher says (De Problem. xxii, 11).
2. This suffices for the Reply to the Second Objection.
3. In fear, heat abandons the heart, with a downward movement: hence in those who are afraid the heart especially trembles, as also those members which are connected with the breast where the heart resides. Hence those who fear tremble especially in their speech, on account of the tracheal artery being near the heart. The lower lip, too, and the lower jaw tremble, through their connection with the heart; which explains the chattering of the teeth. For the same reason the arms and hands tremble. Or else because the aforesaid members are more mobile. For which reason the knees tremble in those who are afraid, according to Is 35,3: "Strengthen ye the feeble hands, and confirm the trembling [Vulg.: 'weak'] knees."
Objection: 1. It would seem that fear hinders action. For action is hindered chiefly by a disturbance in the reason, which directs action. But fear disturbs reason, as stated above (Article ). Therefore fear hinders action.
2. Further, those who fear while doing anything, are more apt to fail: thus a man who walks on a plank placed aloft, easily falls through fear; whereas, if he were to walk on the same plank down below, he would not fall, through not being afraid. Therefore fear hinders action.
3. Further, laziness or sloth is a kind of fear. But laziness hinders action. Therefore fear does too.
On the contrary The Apostle says (Ph 2,12): "With fear and trembling work out your salvation": and he would not say this if fear were a hindrance to a good work. Therefore fear does not hinder a good action.
I answer that Man's exterior actions are caused by the soul as first mover, but by the bodily members as instruments. Now action may be hindered both by defect of the instrument, and by defect of the principal mover. On the part of the bodily instruments, fear, considered in itself, is always apt to hinder exterior action, on account of the outward members being deprived, through fear, of their heat. But on the part of the soul, if the fear be moderate, without much disturbance of the reason, it conduces to working well, in so far as it causes a certain solicitude, and makes a man take counsel and work with greater attention. If, however, fear increases so much as to disturb the reason, it hinders action even on the part of the soul. But of such a fear the Apostle does not speak.
Reply to Objection: 1. This suffices for the Reply to the First Objection.
2. He that falls from a plank placed aloft, suffers a disturbance of his imagination, through fear of the fall that is pictured to his imagination.
3. Everyone in fear shuns that which he fears: and therefore, since laziness is a fear of work itself as being toilsome, it hinders work by withdrawing the will from it. But fear of other things conduces to action, in so far as it inclines the will to do that whereby a man escapes from what he fears.
We must now consider daring: under which head there are four points of inquiry:
(1) Whether daring is contrary to fear?
(2) How is daring related to hope?
(3) Of the cause of daring;
(4) Of its effect.
Objection: 1. It would seem that daring is not contrary to fear. For Augustine says (Questions. 83, qu. 31) that "daring is a vice." Now vice is contrary to virtue. Since, therefore, fear is not a virtue but a passion, it seems that daring is not contrary to fear.
2. Further, to one thing there is one contrary. But hope is contrary to fear. Therefore daring is not contrary to fear.
3. Further, every passion excludes its opposite. But fear excludes safety; for Augustine says (Confess. ii, 6) that "fear takes forethought for safety." Therefore safety is contrary to fear. Therefore daring is not contrary to fear.
On the contrary The Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 5) that "daring is contrary to fear."
I answer that It is of the essence of contraries to be "farthest removed from one another," as stated in Metaph. x, 4. Now that which is farthest removed from fear, is daring: since fear turns away from the future hurt, on account of its victory over him that fears it; whereas daring turns on threatened danger because of its own victory over that same danger. Consequently it is evident that daring is contrary to fear.
Reply to Objection: 1. Anger, daring and all the names of the passions can be taken in two ways. First, as denoting absolutely movements of the sensitive appetite in respect of some object, good or bad: and thus they are names of passions. Secondly, as denoting besides this movement, a straying from the order of reason: and thus they are names of vices. It is in this sense that Augustine speaks of daring: but we are speaking of it in the first sense.
2. To one thing, in the same respect, there are not several contraries; but in different respects nothing prevents one thing having several contraries. Accordingly it has been said above (Question , Article ; Question , Article ) that the irascible passions admit of a twofold contrariety: one, according to the opposition of good and evil, and thus fear is contrary to hope: the other, according to the opposition of approach and withdrawal, and thus daring is contrary to fear, and despair contrary to hope.
3. Safety does not denote something contrary to fear, but merely the exclusion of fear: for he is said to be safe, who fears not. Wherefore safety is opposed to fear, as a privation: while daring is opposed thereto as a contrary. And as contrariety implies privation, so daring implies safety.
Objection: 1. It would seem that daring does not ensue from hope. Because daring regards evil and fearful things, as stated in Ethic. iii, 7. But hope regards good things, as stated above (Question , Article ). Therefore they have different objects and are not in the same order. Therefore daring does not ensue from hope.
2. Further, just as daring is contrary to fear, so is despair contrary to hope. But fear does not ensue from despair: in fact, despair excludes fear, as the Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 5). Therefore daring does not result from hope.
3. Further, daring is intent on something good, viz. victory. But it belongs to hope to tend to that which is good and difficult. Therefore daring is the same as hope; and consequently does not result from it.
On the contrary The Philosopher says (Ethic. iii, 8) that "those are hopeful are full of daring." Therefore it seems that daring ensues from hope.
I answer that As we have often stated (Question , Article ; Question , Article ; Question , Article ), all these passions belong to the appetitive power. Now every movement of the appetitive power is reducible to one either of pursuit or of avoidance. Again, pursuit or avoidance is of something either by reason of itself or by reason of something else. By reason of itself, good is the object of pursuit, and evil, the object of avoidance: but by reason of something else, evil can be the object of pursuit, through some good attaching to it; and good can be the object of avoidance, through some evil attaching to it. Now that which is by reason of something else, follows that which is by reason of itself. Consequently pursuit of evil follows pursuit of good; and avoidance of good follows avoidance of evil. Now these four things belong to four passions, since pursuit of good belongs to hope, avoidance of evil to fear, the pursuit of the fearful evil belongs to daring, and the avoidance of good to despair. It follows, therefore, that daring results from hope; since it is in the hope of overcoming the threatening object of fear, that one attacks it boldly. But despair results from fear: since the reason why a man despairs is because he fears the difficulty attaching to the good he should hope for.
Reply to Objection: 1. This argument would hold, if good and evil were not co-ordinate objects. But because evil has a certain relation to good, since it comes after good, as privation comes after habit; consequently daring which pursues evil, comes after hope which pursues good.
2. Although good, absolutely speaking, is prior to evil, yet avoidance of evil precedes avoidance of good; just as the pursuit of good precedes the pursuit of evil. Consequently just as hope precedes daring, so fear precedes despair. And just as fear does not always lead to despair, but only when it is intense; so hope does not always lead to daring, save only when it is strong.
3. Although the object of daring is an evil to which, in the estimation of the daring man, the good of victory is conjoined; yet daring regards the evil, and hope regards the conjoined good. In like manner despair regards directly the good which it turns away from, while fear regards the conjoined evil. Hence, properly speaking, daring is not a part of hope, but its effect: just as despair is an effect, not a part, of fear. For this reason, too, daring cannot be a principal passion.
Objection: 1. It would seem that some defect is a cause of daring. For the Philosopher says (De Problem. xxvii, 4) that "lovers of wine are strong and daring." But from wine ensues the effect of drunkenness. Therefore daring is caused by a defect.
2. Further, the Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 5) that "those who have no experience of danger are bold." But want of experience is a defect. Therefore daring is caused by a defect.
3. Further, those who have suffered wrongs are wont to be daring; "like the beasts when beaten," as stated in Ethic. iii, 5. But the suffering of wrongs pertains to defect. Therefore daring is caused by a defect.
On the contrary The Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 5) that the cause of daring "is the presence in the imagination of the hope that the means of safety are nigh, and that the things to be feared are either non-existent or far off." But anything pertaining to defect implies either the removal of the means of safety, or the proximity of something to be feared. Therefore nothing pertaining to defect is a cause of daring.
I answer that As stated above (Articles ,2) daring results from hope and is contrary to fear: wherefore whatever is naturally apt to cause hope or banish fear, is a cause of daring. Since, however, fear and hope, and also daring, being passions, consist in a movement of the appetite, and in a certain bodily transmutation; a thing may be considered as the cause of daring in two ways, whether by raising hope, or by banishing fear; in one way, in the part of the appetitive movement; in another way, on the part of the bodily transmutation.On the part of the appetitive movement which follows apprehension, hope that leads to daring is roused by those things that make us reckon victory as possible. Such things regard either our own power, as bodily strength, experience of dangers, abundance of wealth, and the like; or they regard the powers of others, such as having a great number of friends or any other means of help, especially if a man trust in the Divine assistance: wherefore "those are more daring, with whom it is well in regard to godlike things," as the Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 5). Fear is banished, in this way, by the removal of threatening causes of fear; for instance, by the fact that a man has not enemies, through having harmed nobody, so that he is not aware of any imminent danger; since those especially appear to be threatened by danger, who have harmed others.On the part of the bodily transmutation, daring is caused through the incitement of hope and the banishment of fear, by those things which raise the temperature about the heart. Wherefore the Philosopher says (De Part. Animal. iii, 4) that "those whose heart is small in size, are more daring; while animals whose heart is large are timid; because the natural heat is unable to give the same degree of temperature to a large as to a small heart; just as a fire does not heat a large house as well as it does a small house." He says also (De Problem. xxvii, 4), that "those whose lungs contain much blood, are more daring, through the heat in the heart that results therefrom." He says also in the same passage that "lovers of wine are more daring, on account of the heat of the wine": hence it has been said above (Question , Article ) that drunkenness conduces to hope, since the heat in the heart banishes fear and raises hope, by reason of the dilatation and enlargement of the heart.
Reply to Objection: 1. Drunkenness causes daring, not through being a defect, but through dilating the heart: and again through making a man think greatly of himself.
2. Those who have no experience of dangers are more daring, not on account of a defect, but accidentally, i.e. in so far as through being inexperienced they do not know their own failings, nor the dangers that threaten. Hence it is that the removal of the cause of fear gives rise to daring.
3. As the Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 5) "those who have been wronged are courageous, because they think that God comes to the assistance of those who suffer unjustly."Hence it is evident that no defect causes daring except accidentally, i.e. in so far as some excellence attaches thereto, real or imaginary, either in oneself or in another.
Objection: 1. It would seem that the daring are not more eager at first than in the midst of danger. Because trembling is caused by fear, which is contrary to daring, as stated above (Article ; Question , Article ). But the daring sometimes tremble at first, as the Philosopher says (De Problem. xxvii, 3). Therefore they are not more eager at first than in the midst of danger.
2. Further, passion is intensified by an increase in its object: thus since a good is lovable, what is better is yet more lovable. But the object of daring is something difficult. Therefore the greater the difficulty, the greater the daring. But danger is more arduous and difficult when present. It is then therefore that daring is greatest.
3. Further, anger is provoked by the infliction of wounds. But anger causes daring; for the Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 5) that "anger makes man bold." Therefore when man is in the midst of danger and when he is being beaten, then is he most daring.
On the contrary It is said in Ethic. iii, 7 that "the daring are precipitate and full of eagerness before the danger, yet in the midst of dangers they stand aloof."
I answer that Daring, being a movement of the sensitive appetite, follows an apprehension of the sensitive faculty. But the sensitive faculty cannot make comparisons, nor can it inquire into circumstances; its judgment is instantaneous. Now it happens sometimes that it is impossible for a man to take note in an instant of all the difficulties of a certain situation: hence there arises the movement of daring to face the danger; so that when he comes to experience the danger, he feels the difficulty to be greater than he expected, and so gives way.On the other hand, reason discusses all the difficulties of a situation. Consequently men of fortitude who face danger according to the judgment of reason, at first seem slack, because they face the danger not from passion but with due deliberation. Yet when they are in the midst of danger, they experience nothing unforeseen, but sometimes the difficulty turns out to be less than they anticipated; wherefore they are more persevering. Moreover, it may be because they face the danger on account of the good of virtue which is the abiding object of their will, however great the danger may prove: whereas men of daring face the danger on account of a mere thought giving rise to hope and banishing fear, as stated above (Article ).
Reply to Objection: 1. Trembling does occur in men of daring, on account of the heat being withdrawn from the outer to the inner parts of the body, as occurs also in those who are afraid. But in men of daring the heat withdraws to the heart; whereas in those who are afraid, it withdraws to the inferior parts.
2. The object of love is good simply, wherefore if it be increased, love is increased simply. But the object of daring is a compound of good and evil; and the movement of daring towards evil presupposes the movement of hope towards good. If, therefore, so much difficulty be added to the danger that it overcomes hope, the movement of daring does not ensue, but fails. But if the movement of daring does ensue, the greater the danger, the greater is the daring considered to be.
3. Hurt does not give rise to anger unless there be some kind of hope, as we shall see later on (Question , Article ). Consequently if the danger be so great as to banish all hope of victory, anger does not ensue. It is true, however, that if anger does ensue, there will be greater daring.
We must now consider anger: and (1) anger in itself; (2) the cause of anger and its remedy; (3) the effect of anger.
Under the first head there are eight points of inquiry:
(1) Whether anger is a special passion?
(2) Whether the object of anger is good or evil?
(3) Whether anger is in the concupiscible faculty?
(4) Whether anger is accompanied by an act of reason?
(5) Whether anger is more natural than desire?
(6) Whether anger is more grievous than hatred?
(7) Whether anger is only towards those with whom we have a relation of justice?
(8) Of the species of anger.
Objection: 1. It would seem that anger is not a special passion. For the irascible power takes its name from anger [ira]. But there are several passions in this power, not only one. Therefore anger is not one special passion.
2. Further, to every special passion there is a contrary passion; as is evident by going through them one by one. But no passion is contrary to anger, as stated above (Question , Article ). Therefore anger is not a special passion.
3. Further, one special passion does not include another. But anger includes several passions: since it accompanies sorrow, pleasure, and hope, as the Philosopher states (Rhet. ii, 2). Therefore anger is not a special passion.
On the contrary Damascene (De Fide Orth. ii, 16) calls anger a special passion: and so does Cicero (De Quaest. Tusc. iv, 7).
I answer that A thing is said to be general in two ways. First, by predication; thus "animal" is general in respect of all animals. Secondly, by causality; thus the sun is the general cause of all things generated here below, according to Dionysius (Div. Nom. iv). Because just as a genus contains potentially many differences, according to a likeness of matter; so an efficient cause contains many effects according to its active power. Now it happens that an effect is produced by the concurrence of various causes; and since every cause remains somewhat in its effect, we may say that, in yet a third way, an effect which is due to the concurrence of several causes, has a certain generality, inasmuch as several causes are, in a fashion, actually existing therein.Accordingly in the first way, anger is not a general passion but is condivided with the other passions, as stated above (Question , Article ). In like manner, neither is it in the second way: since it is not a cause of the other passions. But in this way, love may be called a general passion, as Augustine declares (De Civ. Dei xiv, 7,9), because love is the primary root of all the other passions, as stated above (Question , Article ). But, in a third way, anger may be called a general passion, inasmuch as it is caused by a concurrence of several passions. Because the movement of anger does not arise save on account of some pain inflicted, and unless there be desire and hope of revenge: for, as the Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 2), "the angry man hopes to punish; since he craves for revenge as being possible." Consequently if the person, who inflicted the injury, excel very much, anger does not ensue, but only sorrow, as Avicenna states (De Anima iv, 6).
Reply to Objection: 1. The irascible power takes its name from "ira" [anger], not because every movement of that power is one of anger; but because all its movements terminate in anger; and because, of all these movements, anger is the most patent.
2. From the very fact that anger is caused by contrary passions, i.e. by hope, which is of good, and by sorrow, which is of evil, it includes in itself contrariety: and consequently it has no contrary outside itself. Thus also in mixed colors there is no contrariety, except that of the simple colors from which they are made.
3. Anger includes several passions, not indeed as a genus includes several species; but rather according to the inclusion of cause and effect.
Objection: 1. It would seem that the object of anger is evil. For Gregory of Nyssa says [*Nemesius, De Nat. Hom. xxi.] that anger is "the sword-bearer of desire," inasmuch, to wit, as it assails whatever obstacle stands in the way of desire. But an obstacle has the character of evil. Therefore anger regards evil as its object.
2. Further, anger and hatred agree in their effect, since each seeks to inflict harm on another. But hatred regards evil as its object, as stated above (Question , Article ). Therefore anger does also.
3. Further, anger arises from sorrow; wherefore the Philosopher says (Ethic. viii, 6) that "anger acts with sorrow." But evil is the object of sorrow. Therefore it is also the object of anger.
On the contrary Augustine says (Confess. ii, 6) that "anger craves for revenge." But the desire for revenge is a desire for something good: since revenge belongs to justice. Therefore the object of anger is good.Moreover, anger is always accompanied by hope, wherefore it causes pleasure, as the Philosopher says (Rhet. ii, 2). But the object of hope and of pleasure is good. Therefore good is also the object of anger.
I answer that The movement of the appetitive power follows an act of the apprehensive power. Now the apprehensive power apprehends a thing in two ways. First, by way of an incomplex object, as when we understand what a man is; secondly, by way of a complex object, as when we understand that whiteness is in a man. Consequently in each of these ways the appetitive power can tend to both good and evil: by way of a simple and incomplex object, when the appetite simply follows and adheres to good, or recoils from evil: and such movements are desire, hope, pleasure, sorrow, and so forth: by way of a complex object, as when the appetite is concerned with some good or evil being in, or being done to, another, either seeking this or recoiling from it. This is evident in the case of love and hatred: for we love someone, in so far as we wish some good to be in him; and we hate someone, in so far as we wish some evil to be in him. It is the same with anger; for when a man is angry, he wishes to be avenged on someone. Hence the movement of anger has a twofold tendency: viz. to vengeance itself, which it desires and hopes for as being a good, wherefore it takes pleasure in it; and to the person on whom it seeks vengeance, as to something contrary and hurtful, which bears the character of evil.We must, however, observe a twofold difference in this respect, between anger on the one side, and hatred and love on the other. The first difference is that anger always regards two objects: whereas love and hatred sometimes regard but one object, as when a man is said to love wine or something of the kind, or to hate it. The second difference is, that both the objects of love are good: since the lover wishes good to someone, as to something agreeable to himself: while both the objects of hatred bear the character of evil: for the man who hates, wishes evil to someone, as to something disagreeable to him. Whereas anger regards one object under the aspect of evil, viz. the noxious person, on whom it seeks to be avenged. Consequently it is a passion somewhat made up of contrary passions.
This suffices for the Replies to the Objections.
Summa Th. I-II EN Qu.44