Quotation by Laurence Sterne

In benevolent natures the impulse to pity is so sudden, that like instruments of music which obey the touch ... you would think the will was scarce concerned, and that the mind was altogether passive in the sympathy which her own goodness has excited. The truth is,—the soul is [so] ... wholly engrossed by the object of pity, that she does not ... take leisure to examine the principles upon which she acts.
Laurence Sterne (1713–1768), British author, clergyman. Sermons, sermon 3, "Philanthropy recommended" (1760), ed. Melvyn New, University Press of Florida (1996).
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