Selection from – Ethics – Part IV. Of Human Bondage, or the Strength of the Emotions (Page 15)

Spinoza's Words: (men of reason return love for hatred)

Proposition XLVI. He, who lives under the guidance of reason, endeavours, as far as possible, to render back love, or kindness, for other men's hatred, anger, contempt, &c., towards him.

All emotions of hatred are bad: therefore he who lives under the guidance of reason will endeavour, as far as possible, to avoid being assailed by such emotions; consequently, he will also endeavour to prevent others being so assailed. But hatred is increased by being reciprocated, and can be quenched by love.

Note.β€”He who chooses to avenge wrongs with hatred is assuredly wretched. But he, who strives to conquer hatred with love, fights his battle in joy and confidence; he withstands many as easily as one, and has very little need of fortune's aid. Those whom he vanquishes yield joyfully, not through failure, but through increase in their powers; all these consequences follow so plainly from the mere definitions of love and understanding, that I have no need to prove them in detail


I think it was Will Durant in The Story of Philosophy who wrote of Friedrich Nietzsche that when he said, "The last Christian died on the cross," he had forgotten about Spinoza.