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tjfields

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  1. To All, I believe that I have learned that that I wanted to learn. In regards to the original post, I have learned that if one uses the Objectivist definition of 'objective', then Objectivism is objective. Thanks to everyone who posted, I appreciate your comments.
  2. StrictlyLogical; I have never claimed that there is an intrinsic or mystical morality which is a property of reality or super-reality (the supernatural) and imposes real or supernatural duties upon man, nor do I think that there is one. I do think that man may discover and follow a set of principles and rules in accordance with his nature and the nature of reality, if he chooses to live.
  3. thenelli01, In post #119 you wrote, “If it is the latter, I am gonna need specifics -- what facts of reality did they observe, what method of concept formation did they use, what did the process of validation look like, and how EXACTLY are they different?” I am not asking you for a specific rundown on or a specific decision about which of two concepts of murder is the correct one. I am asking a general question about how you determine which of two, or more, concepts (not using the same word to denote two different concepts) is the correct one. If two people have formed a concept (by using their consciousness and observing reality and then using reduction to retrace the logical steps necessary to reform the concept and using integration to tie it back in to make sure that there are no contradictions with the rest of their knowledge) and these concepts are not the same (not using the same word to denote two different concepts), how does one know which one is right?
  4. Harrison Danneskjold, In post #115 you wrote, “The accurate definition is the one which reflects the actual facts of reality.” Given the concept of ‘murder’, what are the “actual facts of reality” that will allow one to know that one's concept is accurate?
  5. thenelli01, You asked in post #114, “How are they different, can you make it more concrete?” They are different because one is X and the other is Y. But if you wish to be more specific, for sake of example we will say that the two concepts are the exact opposite of each other.
  6. thenelli01, So you, using your consciousness and observing reality and then using reduction to retrace the logical steps necessary to reform the concept and using integration to tie it back in to make sure that there are no contradictions with the rest of your knowledge, you formed the concept of 'murder' as X, this concept is objectively derived and is therefore correct. Now, when someone else, uses their consciousness and observing reality and then using reduction to retrace the logical steps necessary to reform the concept and using integration to tie it back in to make sure that there are no contradictions with the rest of their knowledge, they formed the concept of 'murder' as Y, this concept is objectively derived and is therefore correct. Since these two objectively derived and correct concepts of 'murder' are different, how do you know which one is right? As for your questions of " So you apply this rule arbitrarily? Why did you decide to apply the fact that "man is not omniscient" in this context?" I do not know what rule I am applying arbitrarily and I was just asking a question which you answered.
  7. thenelli01, In post #110 you wrote, "Your unstated premise is that because man is not omniscient, he cannot know anything for sure." This is not my unstated premise. I know lots of things "for sure." For example, I know "for sure" that if you, me, or any human falls from a 10,000 foot high cliff onto the rocks below with no means of stopping or slowing the decent, you, me, and every human will die. It does not matter how much introspecting I do or how much reduction and integration takes place, the result is the same. You also wrote in post #110, "Murder is a narrower concept or type of killing. Murder is when people kill other people under certain criteria vs. a different type of killing." So if you, using your consciousness and observing reality, formed the concept of 'murder' as X, this concept is objectively derived and is therefore correct. Then through the process of reduction and integration and by introspecting you form a new, or modified, concept of 'murder' as Y, this new, or modified, concept of 'murder' is also objectively derived and is therefore correct. Is this what you are saying?
  8. thenelli01, In post #108 you wrote, "The concept of murder is derived from reality, and the concept of "murder" requires a consciousness to form it." Can I assume that this means that you are and/or have a consciousness and you form the concept of murder? If so, since as you stated in post #95, "Man is not omniscient," does this mean that you do not know whether or not the concept of murder formed by your consciousness is the concept of murder that is derived from reality?
  9. thenelli01, In post #101 you wrote, "We choose what to relate by our ability to choose and to direct our awareness. "Regarding things through an active rearrangement and comparison, regarding things as similar, as members of a group, is * not dictated by reality alone nor consciousness alone, but by a volitionally established relationship between consciousness and existence." That is what Ayn Rand meant as objective. In other words, we choose what to relate, but reality dictates what relationships exist." In post #95 you wrote when talking about the difference between murder and self defense, "So who is right?: the one who corresponds with reality. Reality is the objective standard. If others don't see that your action really was self-defense and sentence you to death for murder, then all that means is that they were wrong. That doesn't make your action immoral just because the consequences ended up negatively affecting your life. Man is not omniscient." These statements implies that 'murder' is a relationship that exists in reality and that man can discover that relationship by an active rearrangement and comparison of things. Is this correct?
  10. Eiuol, In post #99 you wrote, “Look at my clarification to DA. Some people offer value, which for example may be music they create. I don't need to explain how that impacts your life, unless you think life means mere survival. If you mean that value is something only I create, that's not too far off from right. The thing is, you can for yourself figure out if, objectively, a value really does improve or enable living. Values are my own, but those can be objective, too.” I agree with you that what you value is your choice (“Values are my own”). If, for example, you choose to value music, then it is a value to you. However, just because you choose to value something does not mean that anyone else is required to value it. Someone who is deaf, or tone deaf, will not value music as you value it if at all. I will even agree that values can be objective to you. Once you decide upon the criteria that improve and/or enable your life (and beyond the basic necessities required by the nature of humans you make that decision for whatever reasons you want), you can objectively determine whether or not music, or anything else, meets your criteria. I have no issue with this. It is only the claim that morality is objectively derived from the facts of reality that I question.
  11. Thenelli01, In post #95 you wrote, “The fact is that there is objective criteria to determine whether an act is murder or self-defense.” I agree that there can be objective criteria to determine whether an act is murder or self-defense. However, the criteria are not objectively derived from the facts of reality. Man has created the definition of ‘murder’; it is a manmade concept. By using the manmade concept of ‘murder’ as a starting point, it can be objectively demonstrated whether the act of killing a man meets the manmade definition murder.
  12. Regi F., In post #93 you wrote, “I'm not trying to convince you. If it is not reality, independent of whatever you wish, think, feel, or desire, that determines how you ought to live as a human being, what is it?” Reality, independent of whatever one wishes, thinks, feels, or desires, does determine what you need to do and what you should not do in order to stay alive. Beyond staying alive, reality, independent of whatever one wishes, thinks, feels, or desires, does not tell you how you ought to live. Reality does not tell you how “to live as a human being”; it does not tell you what career to pursue, or what books to read, or who to take as a lover. Beyond staying alive, how “to live as a human being” is up to you.
  13. Eiuol, In post #83 you wrote, “If you kill a person, you can't trade with them. That's not a man-made consequence.” I agree with you that you can’t trade with a dead man. It is an objective fact of reality that it is not possible to interact with a dead person, including trading with them. However, this objective fact applies to all dead people regardless of how they became dead. It doesn’t matter if you killed them, or if they died in an accident, or died of natural causes, it is not possible to interact with a dead person. What are the consequences of not being able to interact with a dead person to your ultimate value? There are no naturally occurring consequences to your ultimate value, only those consequences that you create and/or perceive.
  14. Regi F., In post #91 you wrote, "Since you list the necessities of life as water, food, shelter, your list excludes what your first sentice [sic] declares is necessary, to learn what the basic necessities of life are. The first requirement of human life is knowledge determined by that fact of reality which is human nature." To be clear, in post #85 I wrote, in part, "... to learn what are the basic necessities of life that are objectively determined by the nature of man e.g. water, food, shelter..." The abbreviation 'e.g.' means 'for example'. So the sentence reads, "... to learn what are the basic necessities of life that are objectively determined by the nature of man, for example water, food, shelter..." It is not an all inclusive list as I could have included other things like oxygen. You then wrote, "Because all human behavior must be consciously chosen (determined by the fact of reality that humans are volitional beings)..." What 'behavior' do you mean? For example, if a man has a fear of dogs, developed since childhood because of multiple psychological reasons, and runs away from any dog that he sees, he is not consciously choosing to be afraid nor is decision to run necessarily a conscious decision as he is acting off of his fight or flight instinct. "...and no choice is possible without knowing what choices are available and which choices will result in which consequences (will eating this nourish me or kill me?), another fact of reality..." I do not agree that one has to know which choices will result in which consequences in order to make a choice. I will make a reasonable guess that the first human to eat a poisonous mushroom did not know the consequences of that action but still made the choice to eat it. "...and making a choice is a judgement [sic] requiring reason (another fact of reality)..." I do not agree that making a choice is a judgment requiring reason. I have personal knowledge of many people making choices that, in addition to having unknown consequences, were made without the use of reason. "...to fail to learn all one is capable of learning, and using one's best reason to make right choices in all matters of life means to fail in every aspect of life." This part does not make sense to me. How much is one capable of learning? Is it a measurable quantity? Does it matter what one is capable of learning, for example, if I am capable of learning to play a musical instrument but choose not to do so thus failing to learn all that I am capable of learning, do I fail in every aspect of life? What does 'fail' mean in this context? What are 'right choices'? You appear to be attempting to explain how morality is objectively derived from the facts of reality but your explanation is full of subjective terms and concepts. How does any of this demonstrate that morality is objectively derived from the facts of reality?
  15. Regi F., In post #86 you wrote, “Is it not a fact of reality that human beings are rational volitional beings? Does not that fact mean that human beings must live by conscious choice, that their only means of making choices is by means of knowledge about themselves, their own nature and the nature of the world they live in?” I agree with your statement. You then wrote, “Is it not a fact of reality that all living things have a particular nature that determines how they must live, which does not mean simply to survive, but to successfully be the kind of organisms they are?” I agree with the first part of paragraph that reads, “Is it not a fact of reality that all living things have a particular nature that determines how they must live...” However, the phrase, “...but to successfully be the kind of organisms they are?” needs some explanation and a definition. What does it mean to successfully be the kind of organisms they are? If it means anything beyond surviving, that is achieving the basic necessities of life as objectively determined by the nature of the organism, then it is not objectively derived from the facts of reality it is subjective. You then wrote, “Does living as a human being mean simply keeping the human organsim [sic] alive or does it mean living as the kind of being humans are? If you believe that it is merely the perpetuation of protoplasm that "living" means, or Rand meant, than let's make everyone unconscious and put them on life-support systems.” I have the same question as I did for the last paragraph, what does “living as the kind of being humans are” mean? Again, if it means anything beyond surviving, that is achieving the basic necessities of life as objectively determined by the nature of humans, then it is not objectively derived from the facts of reality it is subjective. You then wrote, “If you cannot see that it is the nature of human beings as rational volitional beings that requires them to have a system of moral or ethical principles to live and that same nature that determines what those moral principles must be, than nothing is going to convince you. I'm not trying to convince you either. Just answering you honest questions as honestly as I can.” I will direct you back to the original post where I stated: It is the claim that morality is objectively derived from the facts of reality that I am questioning. I am not criticizing Objectivism as a philosophy nor am I claiming the Objectivist moral theory is invalid. I am also not making any claims that there is no such thing as morality or that reality does not exist. All that I am questioning is the Objectivist claim that morality is objectively derived from the facts of reality and is therefore not subjective.
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