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About l_chaim29

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    Christopher Nicolas Parker
  1. I have been listening to Itzhak Perlman, the famed violinist. I have decided that he plays the most beautiful music of any musician who's name I know of. You can get some good recordings of his music by going to last.fm.com Please enjoy!
  2. Does the type of problem I'm discussing have anything to do with what Rand said about emergency cases? Is it true-- in other words-- that when one has to choose between being rational and serving one's best interest that there is no best or worst choice...but that nonetheless the choice must be made? I think that the essay "The Ethics of Emergencies" by Rand only dealt with the example of helping OTHERS when they were in an emergency situation though.
  3. I did not realize when I wrote the above two messages that, for Rand, man does not mean merely someone with a POTENTIAL for reason, but who is actually actively rational. Consequently, I thought that "man's life" as her standard of morality was all about what she called "survival at any price". I apologize. Apparently one can only be a man, according to her definition of "man", if one is rational; since that's the case, it is obvious to me that a man of her ethics would not use others as if they were mere objects to adavance their own purposes. For every man is too be judged, as she would
  4. Thank you very much Bob... That was very much appreciated;)
  5. I did a little more thinking about this topic last night and here are some of the new thoughts that I have gathered: Regarding my post, it seemed to me when I posted it that in issues where it seemed to me that one would have to choose between not taking advantage of people and surrendering a survival value OR taking advantage of others and obtaining thereby a survival value for oneself, that one would have to be choosing between what is RIGHT (in this particular instance, Not taking advantage of others), and what promoted one's own best interests. (I use the term "right" as synonomous with t
  6. Objectivists typically define reason as "the faculty which identifies and integrates the data provided by one's senses". This definition, however, leaves no room for identification or integration of concretes observed through introspection. Neither does it leave room for the possibility of identifying or integrating the concretes of the internal states of others, as these can only be inferred (in part) from the exisence of one's own awareness of one's own internal states.
  7. Leonard Peikoff states in Objectivism: the Philosophy of Ayn Rand that the metaphysically given is absolute. He then goes on to say that the metaphysically given is that which MUST be, as well as that which man did NOT choose. He contrasts this group of facts with those which he calls "man-made" facts, and describes this latter group of facts as being the opposite and mutually exculsive group to that group which he called "the metaphysically given".... I wonder then what would be the metaphycal status to Peikoff (to use an example similar to one which he uses in the above-mentioned book) of
  8. I do believe that it is proper for a man to view every individual as properly being an end in himself; given the validity of this stance, and given the implications that this has for issues of what constitutes proper social relations (political or otherwise), I think that the Objectivist stance on ethics might need correcting. Objectivist philosphers state that the good consists in acting to sustain one's life; well, I think that it could properly be corrected by saying instead something along the lines that the good consists in sustaining one's own life while at the same time limiting those
  9. Alfonso, The issue to me is this: in order to commit suicide (and I'm keeping in mind only instances in which it would be RATIONAL to do so), you would have to act purposefully... You would problaby even have to act to get/keep a gun, bottle of pills or whatever and use whatever means you decided to in order to go through with it. According to Ayn Rand's definition of "value" then, you would have to act for a value(s). (That is, you would probably be acting to gain and\or keep whatever device you wanted to use to commit suicide with. And yet, to act for such a value (this is the crucial poi
  10. Ayn Rand defines a value as "that which one acts to gain and/or keep"; she also says that values make no sense without one's LIFE as thier ULTIMATE VALUE. Hmm.... Well, it seems to me that I could be suffering from a horrible illness or something (and be right in the decision to end my life) and therefore a gun, or a few bottles of pills, etc... could be a "value" to me according to that definition... In other words, in such a situation, I could act to gain and/or keep one of thes things in order to serve my purpose of being able to kill myself. Yet, in this case, the value in question would
  11. I was wondering whether when Objectivists say that man's life is the standard of morality they mean "man's" in the plural or in the singular sense. I know that Objectivism is not a form of collectivism, but just wanted to clear that up for myself;)
  12. I always had a somewhat hard time accepting what I envisioned the Objectivist ethics to be because of my stance on suicide and euthanasia. I have always believed that people have the right to take their own life or to be assisted in doing so, but even more fundamentally, that it is sometimes the moral thing to do. The way that I have seen the Objectivist ethics for a long time is that man's life as the standard of morality is the same thing as man's survivial being the standard of value. However, I have come to see that these things are different and lead to different results. If man's sur
  13. OK, Roger... I thought that that was what she meant;)
  14. You don't have to "guess" what Rand means by her saying that the standard of morality is "man's life qua man." Just read "The Objectivist Ethics." On p. 17, she says "The standard [that determines what is proper for an organism to do] is the organism's life, or: that which is required for the organism's survival." She echoes this more specifically in regard to man on p. 25, where she says, "The standard of value of the Objectivist ethics...is ~man's~ life, or: that which is required for man's survival ~qua~ man." I.e., as man, as a rational being. Just below this, she gets even more specific:
  15. Well, on a practical level, BECAUSE IT HURTS. Pain at that level might not threaten your life, but it would definitely interfere with your "activities of daily living," and it would interfere with your enjoyment and productivity in life. Plus, it would be damned annoying. Pam, Since this pain would not neccessarily ineterfere with your productive life (it would have to be a case of more SEVERE pain to do this at least, and some pains like I'm describing are known for being usually mild), and also because that's just not the only thing to consider here, I love your comment that it "would be