Barbara's lectures on the Principles of Efficient Thinking


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Donovan: "I am looking for as many original audio-lectures that were given at NBI as possible!"

So am I. This is what happened. NBI had complete sets of all lectures given by NB, Rand, our associate lecturers, guest lecturers, and me. And the man in charge of making copies of the lectures and sending them out to our representatives in various cities had many copies of each. However, some months after NBI closed, our copies of the lectures, as well as many NBI files and records, were stolen from the personal friend to whom I had given them for safekeeping; to this day I have no idea who stole them. Further, the man who made copies took Rand's side after the break between Rand and NB, he did not return his copies to us, and when The Ayn Rand Institute was formed he - quite illegally -- gave his copies to that institute. Such is the ethics of ARI that we were never told that the lectures came into its possession; I discovered it years later quite by chance.

The result is that neither NB or I have copies of the single lectures and lecture courses given and copyrighted by our Institute, except for our own. (And I'm not certain that Nathaniel has all of the lecture courses he wrote and gave.)

If anyone reading this has any copies, or knows of anyone who might have them, I would be very grateful to hear from you.

Barbara

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A postscript to my last post. I am most definitely not assuming that people who have copies of any NBI lectures came to possess them illegally. They might quite innocently have purchased them, or been given them. Nor do I wish these lectures to be turned over to Nathaniel or me, although of course no one else may publish them or rent then out; I simply want to have copies sent to me..

Barbara

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A postscript to my last post. I am most definitely not assuming that people who have copies of any NBI lectures came to possess them illegally. They might quite innocently have purchased them, or been given them. Nor do I wish these lectures to be turned over to Nathaniel or me, although of course no one else may publish them or rent then out; I simply want to have copies sent to me..

Barbara

Barbara,

What a disaster. I have heard rumors that ARI has an archive that almost nobody has access to. It's possible that they could be there, or in Peikoff's hands. This makes me sick, but those materials may have been destroyed. Objectivism is supposed to be a philosophy of reason! We should be able to get along, we should be able to cooperate. I can't understand how this could happen.

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Barbara,

I noticed that Nathaniel's lecture on the Objectivist Ethics (the 9th in Roger's numbering, though not on the disks sold by TOC) had a live audience, and that there were a few signs of extemporizing in his delivery. It also sounded like a tape of a tape of a tape (dull sounding, and in need of a little pitch correction).

The other material that I transcribed (from lectures 3, 4, and 16) was all recorded in an empty studio.

So I take it that Nathaniel had to re-record most of his Basic Principles series because he no longer had usable copies of most of his original lecture tapes.

Robert Campbell

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A postscript to my last post. I am most definitely not assuming that people who have copies of any NBI lectures came to possess them illegally. They might quite innocently have purchased them, or been given them. Nor do I wish these lectures to be turned over to Nathaniel or me, although of course no one else may publish them or rent then out; I simply want to have copies sent to me..

Barbara

Barbara,

Why has nobody sued ARI? Have you requested copies of your lectures from them?

- Donovan

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Donovan: "What a disaster. I have heard rumors that ARI has an archive that almost nobody has access to. It's possible that they could be there, or in Peikoff's hands. This makes me sick, but those materials may have been destroyed. Objectivism is supposed to be a philosophy of reason! We should be able to get along, we should be able to cooperate. I can't understand how this could happen."

I think it almost certain that the lectures are in the ARI archives. I doubt that they would have been destroyed. But the rumors you hear are quite true: only ARI loyalists are allowed entrance; dozens of reputable scholars have ben refused access, apparently out of the fear that they might write something critical about Rand.

As for cooperating, I was at one time quite willing to cooperate, as Peikoff knew. But that was before the ARI attacks on me and on Passion -- and its incredibly unethical airbrushing of Nathaniel's work and mine -- became utterly rabid and hysterical. And further, it was before ARI revealed the bloodthirstiness of its war policy -- that is, its recommendation that Teheran be bombed and leveled now, perhaps wih atomic weapons, and with special attention being paid to bombing mosques and schools; I would refuse to have any association with an organization that advocates such a despicable policy.

You ask why we have not sued ARI. We yet might do so.

Barbara

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Donovan: "What a disaster. I have heard rumors that ARI has an archive that almost nobody has access to. It's possible that they could be there, or in Peikoff's hands. This makes me sick, but those materials may have been destroyed. Objectivism is supposed to be a philosophy of reason! We should be able to get along, we should be able to cooperate. I can't understand how this could happen."

I think it almost certain that the lectures are in the ARI archives. I doubt that they would have been destroyed. But the rumors you hear are quite true: only ARI loyalists are allowed entrance; dozens of reputable scholars have ben refused access, apparently out of the fear that they might write something critical about Rand.

As for cooperating, I was at one time quite willing to cooperate, as Peikoff knew. But that was before the ARI attacks on me and on Passion -- and its incredibly unethical airbrushing of Nathaniel's work and mine -- became utterly rabid and hysterical. And further, it was before ARI revealed the bloodthirstiness of its war policy -- that is, its recommendation that Teheran be bombed and leveled now, perhaps wih atomic weapons, and with special attention being paid to bombing mosques and schools; I would refuse to have any association with an organization that advocates such a despicable policy.

You ask why we have not sued ARI. We yet might do so.

Barbara

Barbara,

I really think you should take legal action. It's probably the only way to objectively demonstrate the injustice which you claim exists. I say claim, loosely, because I have no doubt about your honesty in this matter.

- Donovan

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  • 1 month later...

Barbara,

I am not sure how far along you are on the Efficient Thinking book but I had a thought tonight. Would it be possible to include a cross reference between the book and the audio-lectures? I have to say that I am very pleased with the material in the lectures. I also appreciate the fact that you have written the time of each lecture on each CD. This is very helpful.

Best regards,

DA

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  • 4 months later...
  • 5 months later...

I was wondering how is the progress on your work going Roger?

I enjoyed the original version of POET very much, and considering the changes you and Barbara said will be made - I am eager to see the final result!

Congratualations on the progress you're making on these, Roger. For the Record, I was able to supply Nathaniel with all 48 of his seminar LPs and he and Leigh have had them digitalized and as soon as Leigh finishes checking the work this month, they should be available on NB's Web Site. I also sent them quite a few other LPs going back as early as 65-66. I sent them 38 lbs of records and they all came back on one CD! Amazing.

--Brant

By the way, I am pretty sure it's a DVD

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I was wondering how is the progress on your work going Roger?

I enjoyed the original version of POET very much, and considering the changes you and Barbara said will be made - I am eager to see the final result!

Congratualations on the progress you're making on these, Roger. For the Record, I was able to supply Nathaniel with all 48 of his seminar LPs and he and Leigh have had them digitalized and as soon as Leigh finishes checking the work this month, they should be available on NB's Web Site. I also sent them quite a few other LPs going back as early as 65-66. I sent them 38 lbs of records and they all came back on one CD! Amazing.

--Brant

By the way, I am pretty sure it's a DVD

Hi, "Kreso" -- by "your work," I assume you mean my work on the BPOO and POET lectures. The transcriptions are all done, and have been since last September. The BPOO book is moving gradually toward publication, with a projected date of September 09 (just around the corner), but there is still work to be done, including footnotes and (hopefully) and index. Gads, I'm glad I'm not a book publisher -- or editor. I'd be tearing out my hair!

As for ~my own~ work, I'm having more fun than a barrel of monkeys! I delivered a talk on emotion and meaning in music in Las Vegas at Free Minds 09 on July 7, and then motored to Mammoth Lakes, CA where I played in one jazz group and played and sang with a big band (16 musicians). Currently I have just finished arrangement #3 of songs for a CD of mostly originals (5 of 7) that I expect to be finished in the fall, perhaps by end of summer. I'll announce on OL when it's available for purchase, which will mainly be through CD Baby, both CD format and digital download.

I am ~not~ enjoying the broiling hot weather in my "day gig" at Disneyland. They turned down (?) the air conditioning in our break area, so that the temperature is now allowed to creep up to 74 with fairly high relative humidity. Not easy to cool down after 30 minutes of pounding the pavement and the lips, entertaining folks at the Happiest Place on Earth. But it's a gig!

REB

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Donovan: "I am looking for as many original audio-lectures that were given at NBI as possible!"

So am I. This is what happened. NBI had complete sets of all lectures given by NB, Rand, our associate lecturers, guest lecturers, and me. And the man in charge of making copies of the lectures and sending them out to our representatives in various cities had many copies of each. However, some months after NBI closed, our copies of the lectures, as well as many NBI files and records, were stolen from the personal friend to whom I had given them for safekeeping; to this day I have no idea who stole them. Further, the man who made copies took Rand's side after the break between Rand and NB, he did not return his copies to us, and when The Ayn Rand Institute was formed he - quite illegally -- gave his copies to that institute. Such is the ethics of ARI that we were never told that the lectures came into its possession; I discovered it years later quite by chance.

The result is that neither NB or I have copies of the single lectures and lecture courses given and copyrighted by our Institute, except for our own. (And I'm not certain that Nathaniel has all of the lecture courses he wrote and gave.)

If anyone reading this has any copies, or knows of anyone who might have them, I would be very grateful to hear from you.

Barbara

Barbara, I know of one person who got copies to those lectures quite innocently. You surely know him. He was at your 80th birthday party in May. His name is Kerry O'Quinn, and he lives close to you and close to James in Hollywood.

As he tells it, someone at NBI or The Objectivist was "cleaning out" things and gave him a bunch of lecture tapes and said, in effect, "Do what you want with them, listen to them, give them away, tape over them, whatever." For a while, he just used them to tape other things, then at some point he realized what he was doing and saved the rest of them.

He says he has, on occasion, presented the tapes at his home. The most recent one, which I would give my eye teeth to hear, let alone to record and transcribe for posterity, is Rand's own lecture in BPOO on "The Objectivist Esthetics." I tried to negotiate a copy from him that I could transcribe, but he has only replied once briefly in 2 months, saying he's too busy.

One other interesting thing about him: he purports to be a good friend of both "the Brandens" and Leonard Peikoff, and that they all know about it and are "fine with it." He gets together with Leonard, and they just talk. He says Leonard has pulled way back from ARI and is "just doing philosophy."

Take this for what it's worth. O'Quinn is a bit of a promoter, but I have no particular reason to doubt him.

REB

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Hi, "Kreso" -- by "your work," I assume you mean my work on the BPOO and POET lectures. The transcriptions are all done, and have been since last September. The BPOO book is moving gradually toward publication, with a projected date of September 09 (just around the corner), but there is still work to be done, including footnotes and (hopefully) and index. Gads, I'm glad I'm not a book publisher -- or editor. I'd be tearing out my hair!

As for ~my own~ work, I'm having more fun than a barrel of monkeys! I delivered a talk on emotion and meaning in music in Las Vegas at Free Minds 09 on July 7, and then motored to Mammoth Lakes, CA where I played in one jazz group and played and sang with a big band (16 musicians). Currently I have just finished arrangement #3 of songs for a CD of mostly originals (5 of 7) that I expect to be finished in the fall, perhaps by end of summer. I'll announce on OL when it's available for purchase, which will mainly be through CD Baby, both CD format and digital download.

I am ~not~ enjoying the broiling hot weather in my "day gig" at Disneyland. They turned down (?) the air conditioning in our break area, so that the temperature is now allowed to creep up to 74 with fairly high relative humidity. Not easy to cool down after 30 minutes of pounding the pavement and the lips, entertaining folks at the Happiest Place on Earth. But it's a gig!

REB

"Roger", wow, sounds like you are having a really interesting time in your life, I'm glad to hear you are having fun playing and singing in such interesting places as well as delivering philosophical talks.

By 'your work' I was wondering in particular about POET in written format (including changes you and Barbara discussed in this particular topic). Thanks for answering!

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  • 4 months later...

Roger, I have an audio book by Barbara Branden - 19 discs and titled "Efficient Thinking". Given that you were instrumental in bringing "The Vision of Ayn Rand" to book form, I was hoping to see you announce a similar project for ET. The discs of ET are of very good quality, so I am able to listen and learn without the struggle that I had with "The Basic Principles of Objectivism". Still, it would be very helpful to have ET in book format.

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Roger, I have an audio book by Barbara Branden - 19 discs and titled "Efficient Thinking". Given that you were instrumental in bringing "The Vision of Ayn Rand" to book form, I was hoping to see you announce a similar project for ET. The discs of ET are of very good quality, so I am able to listen and learn without the struggle that I had with "The Basic Principles of Objectivism". Still, it would be very helpful to have ET in book format.

Hi, Mary Lee. I share your wish that there were a similar project underway for Barbara's POET lectures. The transcriptions have been completed for over a year now, and they await Barbara's decision to have them published essentially "as is," or to incorporate them into an expanded book on how and how not to think. If Nathaniel's book of lectures does well, as it appears it will, Cobden Press may have a definite interest in publishing Barbara's lectures as well. We will see.

Best for the New Year,

REB

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Thank you for your response, Roger.

Apparently I had missed the fact that the transcriptions were completed already. I am going to guess that Barbara wants to add a chapter similar to Nathaniel's essay about the Benefits and Hazards of the philosophy of Ayn Rand in order to bring her audience up to date on additional discoveries about thinking since the lectures were prepared. That would be a good idea - good enough to wait for unless the new material would be enough to make another book, even if only a small one. If she needs a lot of hours and editing time for the additional material and if it is not necessary to include it with the lectures in order to prevent misunderstandings or misapprehensions, I would like to urge her to go ahead and publish as is.

Her lectures contain material that is perfectly applicable to the times.

Think about the growing trend of home schooling that could make timely use of the lectures. What about the simple need of anyone struggling to write to his congressman or to his local newspaper and floundering around in a fog of poor thinking characterics that are preventing him from being able to make the best possible use of Nathaniel's lectures on Government and the Individual or Fallacies about Capitalism. Think about the synergies between these two sets of lectures and the implications for the magnified value of each when presented along side the other.

Please let Barbara know the immportance of her work. If ever she wanted to leave a legacy, now is the time to create the substance of it.

Again, thank you for your effort to help get this information into the hands of an eager public.

Mary Lee Harsha

Edited by Mary Lee Harsha
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Thank you for your response, Roger.

Apparently I had missed the fact that the transcriptions were completed already. I am going to guess that Barbara wants to add a chapter similar to Nathaniel's essay about the Benefits and Hazards of the philosophy of Ayn Rand in order to bring her audience up to date on additional discoveries about thinking since the lectures were prepared. That would be a good idea - good enough to wait for unless the new material would be enough to make another book, even if only a small one. If she needs a lot of hours and editing time for the additional material and if it is not necessary to include it with the lectures in order to prevent misunderstandings or misapprehensions, I would like to urge her to go ahead and publish as is.

Her lectures contain material that is perfectly applicable to the times.

Think about the growing trend of home schooling that could make timely use of the lectures. What about the simple need of anyone struggling to write to his congressman or to his local newspaper and floundering around in a fog of poor thinking characterics that are preventing him from being able to make the best possible use of Nathaniel's lectures on Government and the Individual or Fallacies about Capitalism. Think about the synergies between these two sets of lectures and the implications for the magnified value of each when presented along side the other.

Please let Barbara know the immportance of her work. If ever she wanted to leave a legacy, now is the time to create the substance of it.

Again, thank you for your effort to help get this information into the hands of an eager public.

Mary Lee Harsha

Yes, I have the lectures on tape - and they are fascinating to listen to... out of date in any way? not as can remember... they're great to listen to while soaking, the player just outside the door, out of the humid air of the hot tub... a book would be fine as well [tho doubt recommending it while soaking... ;-)]...

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  • 4 months later...

Hi Roger,

Any updates regarding Barbara's book?

I'm going through the lecture series now, but need something to look at since I'm easily distracted when reading listening.

And may I offer a humble suggestion of having the book made available in digital format for the Amazon Kindle, before making it available in print. That way changes can be made to it while people are already exposed to its benefits. :)

I look forward to your reply. :D

Edited by Haider Al-Mosawi
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Hi Roger,

Any updates regarding Barbara's book?

I'm going through the lecture series now, but need something to look at since I'm easily distracted when reading.

And may I offer a humble suggestion of having the book made available in digital format for the Amazon Kindle, before making it available in print. That way changes can be made to it while people are already exposed to its benefits. :)

I look forward to your reply. :D

I can relate to your comment about distraction. My suggestion - - get out a pad and take some notes. It works well for me.

I am a Professor, and I find that my students who don't take notes learn less than those who do. This is actually a drawback of this modern age of "distributing the PowerPoints or other lecture notes as handouts" - the audience is, paradoxically, LESS ENGAGED than if they were taking notes. Eerily reminiscent of the letter-writer in the first lecture of Barbara Branden's lectures!

Bill P

(Edited to correct ridiculous typo where I typed "lean" instead of "learn" in the second paragraph.)

Edited by Bill P
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I am a Professor, and I find that my students who don't take notes lean less than those who do.

Isn't it also important whether they lean backwards or forwards? Or even sidewards?

Good catch of my silly typo (lean instead of learn). Now corrected.

Bill P

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Thanks, Bill!

And I'm glad I didn't pass by before you corrected your typo. Otherwise, I might have ended up with a back injury. :P

But I'm relieved that nobody picked up on my mistake (which I have corrected now!).

Yes, I should definitely start taking notes, as well as be willing to pause the lecture to catch up, or note down my own observations.

I sometimes forget I have such control when I'm listening to an audio file! :)

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Hi Michael,

Thank you for your warm welcome. :)

My journey to Objectivism was an interesting one.

My cousin was living in Canada when I was at university in London (UK). He was an Objectivist and I was a Muslim extremist, who believed Ayn Rand was the anti-Christ, because she seemed to promote everything I stood against (selfishness, capitalism, America, etc). My cousin and I had long discussions about a variety of subjects, and I started to read some of Ayn Rand's works to get a better understanding of his views. I couldn't find fault in her reasoning.

To cut a long story short, I began to evaluate my beliefs in light of reality and the impact they were having on my psychology and social relationships. I realized that a morality based on an "after-life" was extremely destructive and what I should be focusing on was a moral code I can use for this life to experience happiness right here, right now.

I have an understanding of both the religious/selfless mindset as well as the rational/selfish mindset. I try and promote Objectivist values here in Kuwait based on my understanding of both mindsets.

Anyways, that's a snippet from my life, and I hope to be sharing more around here, and getting to know you fine people a little better. :)

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Hi Michael,

Thank you for your warm welcome. :)

My journey to Objectivism was an interesting one.

My cousin was living in Canada when I was at university in London (UK). He was an Objectivist and I was a Muslim extremist, who believed Ayn Rand was the anti-Christ, because she seemed to promote everything I stood against (selfishness, capitalism, America, etc). My cousin and I had long discussions about a variety of subjects, and I started to read some of Ayn Rand's works to get a better understanding of his views. I couldn't find fault in her reasoning.

To cut a long story short, I began to evaluate my beliefs in light of reality and the impact they were having on my psychology and social relationships. I realized that a morality based on an "after-life" was extremely destructive and what I should be focusing on was a moral code I can use for this life to experience happiness right here, right now.

I have an understanding of both the religious/selfless mindset as well as the rational/selfish mindset. I try and promote Objectivist values here in Kuwait based on my understanding of both mindsets.

Anyways, that's a snippet from my life, and I hope to be sharing more around here, and getting to know you fine people a little better. :)

Fascinating story. Thanks for sharing it.

Ghs

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