Peaceful Awareness

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  1. Regi, isn't the guaranteed penalty that reality imposes "require" you not to jump off a 3 story building? I am speaking metaphorically. I agree, there is no agency or God blaring the commandment. But isn't the metaphoric context what people mean? If so, shouldn't that be made clear and acknowledged. That if you mean the requirement exists metaphorically, you are right, you are required to do what is right if you want to have a good life. My understanding is that Objectivist ethics considers "evasive" defiance as the root cause of evil. But a mistake, which reality punishes just as severely is not considered immoral. There is a context where both types of action are "wrong", but using Objectivist ethics, only the volitional defiance is "wrong". Is this correct?
  2. Definitely. It is a response to guilt or shame. One tenses up to not feel the joy that they for some reason don't think they deserve. In this area, Rand was the champion of pointing out unearned guilt that we accept without realizing it. If there is anything I am grateful for it is this. She gave me freedom. The problem I found with emotion is that it is not in line with my thoughts in many occasions. I have to work at making my emotions catch up with my thinking. So there are times where there is a conflict between the two. The question comes up, what is my true self at the time of the conflict, my feelings or my thoughts. Allowing the battle to rage, or the inner communication to happen allows the true self to show itself. This is as opposed to repressing, not allowing the emotion to have a voice. I was amazed when Rearden in a sense was dumped by Dagny that he went on with his life. He knew it was over (his thoughts) and his feelings did not fight it. I don't think I can do that. It takes time for the feelings to fall into line. Metaphorically, we call it "healing".
  3. Yes, agreed. My experience with objectivism has been to encourage pushing down emotions. Or that has been the net effect. This is both done in the name of eliminating subjectivism and in the name of not using emotionalism as a form of cognition. Clearly, emotionalism is not a form of cognition. But emotion is a guide to action on some level. Sometimes you do not have all the fact and you have to make a decision. All you have is your feelings and you have to go by them. Fear can turn into panic and thinking one's way through is definitely superior/the "right" way to go. Emotional self-preservation is pre-moral, it sometimes can be classified as a whim. As such, it is heavily attacked by Rand. "Feeling deeply" on the other hand is encouraged by Branden. In fact, there is plenty of evidence that pushing down of feelings "constantly" in the long run will cause irrational thoughts and behavior. There has to be a good balance. Where is the delineation between feelings vs. the subjective reality that feelings create? One problem is the inability for the average person to determine what is their feeling vs. their thought. But once you can, if your feelings are thought to be immoral in the context of your decision making, I think you may have lost a tool of survival. Especially if conflated with subjectivism. Isn't nurturing one's feelings, nurturing one's subjective reality?
  4. Exactly. The question is if "emotional self-preservation" is moral?
  5. I believe the problem I have is the issue of volition in this context. Sometimes I make up stuff without knowing it. Meaning I find out in hind sight. So it is a conscious desire to go against what you know is real. I could only see it happen if something was unbearable and one "tricks" oneself into loosing contact with that reality (to make life bearable). So, I would conclude that the subjective/irrational that is being described can only be due to trauma. Or is there another point when it becomes desirable?
  6. I like the three definitions but the idea that Rand meant the first one is troubling in that if one chooses to believe in what is logically coherent, that makes sense, that can be confirmed, it conflicts with that definition. Ultimately, even an Objectivist would subordinate it to what they wish, isn't rationality also a wish?