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Peter Morris

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Everything posted by Peter Morris

  1. I literally chuckled. Haha. Yes, I realize the irony. And yeah, I have stopped frequenting and relying on these forums myself. Most of us are not even really Objectivists. *gasp* I said it.
  2. Honestly, my first thought is that she probably gave it little thought. To Rand, death was the basically equivalent to the world ending. "I will not die, it is the world that will end." I've been an Atheist my whole life, and I always figured I would get buried. This is the first I've even heard of burial having any mystical significance.
  3. No. You have a very wrong idea about Rand's philosophy. It absolutely is not. If you think this has anything to do with Objectivism then you are completely mistaken. And I mean in a very deep way. No where in Rand's writing did she even come close to calling less skilled workers useless moochers. Rand's fiction focuses on great men. Her philosophy and morality, on the other hand, is for everyone of any ability. Her fiction also does not cast people of lesser ability as unworthy, immoral moochers. In Atlas Shrugged, there are passages such as this: 'He saw a bus turning a corner, expertly ste
  4. When we call something a fact is different from whether it actually is a fact. Hopefully if we did everything correctly, what we call facts actually are facts, and we have methods to check. But sometimes we fail. But if you have the right method and logic, errors make themselves known because contradictions arise. When some proposition is actually a fact, and someone thinks it's a fact, then they actually know the fact. But if you can't go around thinking, 'but how do you know that you know that you know that you know.... (that you know) ad infinitum ... that it's a fact. Like Newtons laws
  5. You're imagining that the universe itself exists within a universe where time exists. The universe itself doesn't have the attributes of the things within it such as time and space. It's hard, but try to only ever think oft he universe from within the universe, you cannot imagine it as this ball of galaxies with you standing outside of it looking in. It's important to note that Ayn Rand, as far as I know, thought that the universe was an eternal, finite plenum. That there was no part of the universe where nothing was (true metaphysically empty space - void of any physical existence - does not
  6. That has nothing to do with Objectivism, so I don't know why you'd call it Neo-Objectivism. The ideas themselves are just assertions. "inborn inner pressure to do what is right." No such thing exists, and if it does, prove it. And if you can prove it, having an 'inner pressure' to do something does not mean one ought to do it. The Christians have a history of trying to integrate good and rational philosophy with their mystic philosophy. But of course, such a thing cannot be done.
  7. If you figure this out, please let me know! What is needed is practical step by step advice. All I've gotten is 'think about what you like and then try things out'. It's not very useful.
  8. What are the arguments for intrinsic value? You don't prove a negative. You disprove the positive arguments for a proposition. Value is objective. It's neither in the thing itself nor in the eye of the beholder. It's both. It's the objective nature of the thing being valued in relation to the objective nature of the living thing that values it for its survival.
  9. I'm friends with a philosophy PhD student who holds opposite views to me on many philosophical questions. We talk and discuss different ideas. I don't see why he can't be my friend even though his views are so different from mine. We share an interest in ideas and philosophy. We also talk about girls, lifting weights, life in general. Extract value from people where you can. Sharing a common explicit philosophy is not the only reason to be friends with someone, and it's a poor reason in itself. Just avoid friendships with people who are clearly irrational and nutty. Most of my friends have
  10. All wealth is achieved that way, not necessarily all money. Ayn Rand distinguished between the money maker and the money appropriator. http://aynrandlexicon.com/ayn-rand-works/money-making.html (I've listened to this probably 10 times. I highly recommend it.)
  11. Welcome to the adventure. I suggest you read with an active mind all the basic Objectivist literature, and also get some recordings from http://estore.aynrand.org/. For purpose, I highly recommend 'The Value of Purpose' by Tara Smith from that site. (but that lecture may be beyond you at this stage, it might require more an advanced understanding to grasp it properly.) I also highly recommend Nathaniel Branden's work on self esteem. This stuff goes deep, deeper than you may realize, and it is enormously powerful to improve your experience of life. Whatever philosophical ideas you end up ad
  12. Of course, it's impossible for people to privately coordinate large projects for profit...
  13. No way. It may actually be the most perfect introduction to physics ever written. Harriman explains all the details, and there is very little mathematics involved. I felt for the first time I could actually understand physics, not only what it was, but the actual physics, and I also felt a true appreciation for what the early physicists had done. The history of science is actually like a fascinating mystery story, but academia manages to make it into a dry process of boring calculations and memorization. Just to name a few things, I understood for the first time in my life what a vector wa
  14. You would have to go through an infinite number of 'I'm not's if you had to assume the negative of any arbitrary assertion. Just throw it out wholesale. Don't even go looking for evidence that you are 'not in the matrix'. There can be none. If there is any evidence that arises that suggests you are in a matrix, then you can look into it, but until then you should not even consider it. But we can know that an objective reality does exist somewhere. Even if we were in the matrix, that means there are computers in the real world that simulate it. I think many people are implying that reality
  15. This. This person gets it. This is the exact response I had in mind. All arbitrary hypotheses must be thrown out. Bingo. Is it correct to say that there could be a white porcelain teapot orbiting the sun between the Earth and Venus with a little pink heart on one side and the Chinese character for 'Happiness' on the other side of exactly 750g in mass and 50cm in diameter. Is it correct to say that there could be an intelligent parasite species that lives in all our brains that alters our sense data such that we behave in ways that are beneficial to it and that we cannot perci
  16. I agree with the article. I literally just read that article before logging on here. Focusing on politics and who to vote for to me is a gross mis-allocations of one's time and effort. You are better off focusing on your interests. I plan to donate to people spreading good ideas like reason and self-interest. Democracy is a farce. It's a show. Your vote is nearly worthless. If you do vote, you should vote for the person you actually want in, not the party you think 'has a chance' of winning. Your vote doesn't matter anyway. People actually have the fantastic delusion that their vote ha
  17. She completely rejects the implicitly underlying accepted morality and proposes almost the opposite. That rustles feathers. She is also misrepresented in popular culture which is where most people are getting their information about her.
  18. Oh, I see what you mean there. Reality itself is a primary without explanation because it would basically require explaining it in terms of something outside reality. Agreed on that point.
  19. False. Babies don't evaluate pleasure as good. They don't sit there and go, this is a feeling I'm having, I wonder if it's good, well let me work that out, yes, I think I will evaluate this feeling to correspond to an objective good. No that's not how pleasure works. Pleasure simply feels good. Once again you have talked in circles. "because the neural mechanisms simply make it feel that way (good)" My question is how could it do that? And by the way, your ice example is inappropriate too. The reason ice melts at ice melts at 32 degrees is because the intermolecular forces between the
  20. "We consider it good if we like it." - That's talking in circles. Why do we like it? Because it feels good.Why does it feel good? Because we like it. It doesn't answer the question. The nature of any set of neural mechanisms doesn't have any goodness or badness in them. They just are. So why are they experienced as either good or bad by their nature?
  21. Something I'm grappling with lately is how it is possible for physical pleasure to be an intrinsically 'positive' experience. Likewise, how pain is intrinsically experienced as a negative, unpleasant, bad experience. A baby likes the taste of sweet and dislikes sour. A baby cries due to pain and laugh at funny faces. A baby has no conception of 'life as the standard of value'. This is also true of most adults who have no conception of life as the standard of value. Pleasure is just an end in itself, as 'happiness' is. Now I've heard it said that pleasure is supposed to be 'rigged' such tha
  22. I made a thread about this on Objectivist Living. I thought I'd get opinions here, since I've been informed they are the pro-Barbara Branden camp. I thought that 'The Passion of Ayn Rand' was just a vanilla biography. I didn't know there was a rift amongst Objectivists about it. I only knew of the Peikoff-Kelley Open-Closed rift. I found it at my university library and got hooked by the first page. The book itself is well written and engaging, and the first page draws you in. I found myself lost in the story. The first part about 'Alice' was very good and very interesting. It seemed we
  23. Well, I have roughly two ways of handling it. If I do engage, I do so in a quite detached way. I make sure not to feel angry or frustarted. I accept that I won't be able to change anyone's mind, so I only do it as an exercise in fleshing out my own understanding. If the person is clearly irrational or emotion or angry or abusive, then I simply stop. I have no interest in going further, I don't feel frustration. If I felt frustrated, it meant I thought they should change their mind and that they have to and I can't make them. That's totally wrong. Just live your life, don't worry about them. Th
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