Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Ayn Rand Objectivism

i reposted my post above on HASSERS:
and got an interesting comment from The Objectivist Club at UCI (Ayn Rand Institute). They included a link to a video on Moral Absolutism (Reason v Faith):
in which the speaker is asked how you can decide between right and wrong / good and bad in the absence of God.

The basis of Ayn Rand Objectivism according to

Metaphysics .. the task of man's consciousness is to perceive reality, not to create or invent it." Thus Objectivism rejects any belief in the supernatural.

"Man's reason is fully competent to know the facts of reality. Reason is man's only means of acquiring knowledge." Objectivism rejects mysticism (any acceptance of faith or feeling as a means of knowledge), and it rejects skepticism (the claim that certainty or knowledge is impossible).

Human Nature
Man is a rational being. Reason, as man's only means of knowledge, is his basic means of survival. But the exercise of reason depends on each individual's choice. "Man is a being of volitional consciousness." "That which you call your soul or spirit is your consciousness, and that which you call 'free will' is your mind's freedom to think or not, the only will you have, your only freedom. This is the choice that controls all the choices you make and determines your life and character."Thus Objectivism rejects any form of determinism, the belief that man is a victim of forces beyond his control (such as God, fate, upbringing, genes, or economic conditions).

"Reason is man's only proper judge of values and his only proper guide to action. The proper standard of ethics is: man's survival qua mani.e., that which is required by man's nature for his survival as a rational being (not his momentary physical survival as a mindless brute). Rationality is man's basic virtue, and his three fundamental values are: reason, purpose, self-esteem. Manevery manis an end in himself, not a means to the ends of others; he must live for his own sake, neither sacrificing himself to others nor sacrificing others to himself; he must work for his rational self-interest, with the achievement of his own happiness as the highest moral purpose of his life." Thus Objectivism rejects any form of altruismthe claim that morality consists in living for others or for society.

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