Chuck

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    music, literature, history, sciences, getting from here to there

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    Charles Morrison
  1. Roger and all - The source_ of Purpose and Self-esteem is not Reason per se. Such basic non-optional values each derive from some basic fact about our nature - about a reason-based life. There is of course some causal mutuality amongst the three values and the virtues for attaining them. Clear purposefulness and good self-esteem facilitate the application of reason (thinking, work), while spastic purpose and self-complacency impede it. But it's a gross understatement to speak of reason 'helping' or unreason 'hindering' other values. To the extent that the pursuit and application of reason conks out the results can be poor career choices, dumb marriages, taking pride in the wrong things or failure even in well-chosen purposes. Can anyone think of a value that does not depend crucially on reason - conscious living - to be gained, kept? I question that it would be at all confusing and unhelpful to regard Reason as a notch or two more fundamental than the other two big ones. One red herring: When many people think "Reason" they think Objectivism, their own take on it, or generally some set of ideas. The "primacy of Reason" may thus evoke goals or personal targets being deduced rationalisically from big abstractions. Indeed, haven't Objectivists been known to deduce careers, spouses and who they want to be from half-digested First Principles? Pride and Purpose to all, Chuck
  2. Closely apprenticing with Henry Cameron without Al-Anon. Not thinking of the Ellsworth Tooheys. Chuck
  3. Yes, we can always use a good challenge to our fundamentals, and to our intellectual independence.... First, let's be sure we are talking the same language. In Objectivese, "primacy of existence" is not a chronological primacy, what emerges from what, or the undeniable dependence of consciousness on a living physical brain. Rand's standing-on-one foot formulation is "wishing won't make it so". The issue is whether our wishes, feelings, doctrines, self-deceptions have direct power to effect existence or achieve knowledge of existence. We know they don't, but sometimes forget. Explicit axioms are there to remind us. The fact that you can't rebut or question some fundamental without implicitly accepting it does not necessarily show that you're stuck in some blind dogma. Chuck
  4. AR, quoted by jenright: "....to proclaim spiritual sisterhood with lesbians..." I wonder how most lesbians would take to the idea of spiritual sisterhood with the likes of Andrea Dworkin or Luce Irigaray? Chuck
  5. Chuck

    Thinking about thinking

    Thanks to both of you for joining. Kat joined last month, and provided the link to OL. Cool!
  6. This Yahoo! forum is for discussion of everything pertaining to the operation of the human mind, and to living consciously. - techniques and methods - books, articles, links - definitions, essentials, getting to the core of something - introspection (how do I know what's bugging me? etc.) - thinking skills for 3-year-olds - how to benefit from encounter with deeply opposite views - what's dialectics? what would be everyday applications? - communicating when angry And hopefully much more. http://www.groups.yahoo.com/group/psycho-epistemology
  7. Barbara Branden has said that she sees the life and world of Ayn Rand as a great story, and indeed 'The Passion of Ayn Rand' has attributes of a fine novel. For example a strong thematic focus IMHO on comparative mental processes. Especially on many of AR's that we would love to emulate, and a few we wouldn't. From this standpoint, 'The Passion of Ayn Rand' could, in a sense, be regarded as a sequel to 'Principles of Efficient Thinking'. Those of us who are excited about BB's forthcoming book could pick up some hints of its content by reading or rereading the bio. In the first Lecture she states: The modern human brain has been around for over 100,000 years, and we are still learning how to use it! Chuck