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softwareNerd last won the day on February 26 2022

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  1. As stated, this has already moved toward being completely arbitrary, to being a potentially objective. "Objective" here means that one considers the the facts about the restaurant and about yourself. For instance, maybe the chairs are average size, but you're a big person and the other restaurant has oversized chairs. And, that's not to say you will always know your reasons... perhaps the chairs are upholstered in yellow, and you just hate the look. Yes, one can spend the time introspecting where your tastes come from, and whether they make sense...but, given that you have those taste, the decision to avoid the yellow chairs is still objective. Objective does not mean right/correct... because one could be using incorrect facts about either the object or the subject... It just means considering both those aspects.
  2. Is it likely that these feelings are totally arbitrary? How is that even possible? Can you think of any real-life situation that is somewhat close to your exampl? Then give us some insight ... ... in that real-life example: why did you feel that way?
  3. Yes, it's quite routine for people to take pride in stuff they played no role in, and would even have actively worked against. They do this because they identify closely with the target of their pride, and they think something along the lines of "someone enacting values like mine" did something good. Too often, this becomes "people like me did...", or "people who live near me did..." of even "people who live nearby 200 years ago did...". As an *emotion* this is just natural consequence of the core question: who am I? If you think of yourself as a American, mid-western, Christian... the emotion of pride is natural when another mid-westerner, American or Christian does something good. Of course, just because one feels an emotion does not mean the core assumptions are right. That's what one needs to question: who am I?
  4. To be honest, I do not understand the question/hypothesis/proposition... that's why I figured I could not post anything else that would be coherent.
  5. The basic you make about what one must think about is valid. One must think about that one tree. However, that's not really a "moral code" for that tree. At least not the general use of the concept "moral code". My point here is not about morality or even philosophy, as such. It's equally about (say) biology. One can take the word "biology" and use it to talk about the particular biology of a tree. However, that's just to use the same term fro two different concepts. There would still be a science of biology that studies trees, and can talk about trees that do not even exist today.
  6. While I completely understand the value of presenting the OP in a narrative style, I am actually not clear enough about the proposition to offer an opinion one way or the other. Or maybe I understand, but the narrative approach makes me wonder if they're the propositions you actually intend. So, let me summarize the proposition on the table, and you tell me if I got it right, or if I'm misreading this completely.: There's an individual tree for which we want to devise a moral code That moral code should not be for all trees in general, but for that specific tree Is this what's on the table? The reason I'm unsure is that seems obvious that a moral code that intends to make an individual tree flourish can only do so if it is geared toward that individual tree. Yet, it leaves open a couple of questions about what we mean by moral code... how abstract it is...and so on.
  7. Maybe he can has studied the local environment, and the potential changes, and is thus able to reasonably predict the future scenarios that this particular tree is going to encounter?
  8. Hmm... I'm waiting to see what this guy comes up with.
  9. Hello. Thank you for sharing your story. Chances are that the Islamic world will secularize, the way the Christian world did, perhaps looking back at people like Ibn Sina for inspiration, the way secular Christians adopted people like Aristotle. But, so glad you're out of that part of the world, and able to pursue a life where you have so many more choices available. All the best to you
  10. Alongside Victor Hugo, Rand classified Dostoyevsky as a Romantic Realist. Most authors want to portray heroes, not just evil characters. So, it is easy to mistake this usually-present aspect for the essential characteristic. But, the essential characteristic of Romanticism (i.e. Rand's concept of it) is: volitional thought and action.
  11. Nope. Not by Rand's definition. The book can be about extremely evil people, and nothing else, and it would still be Romantic Realism.
  12. Yeah, that's why I mentioned Rearden, Mallory and Dominique. This might be Rand's major aesthetic shortcoming: to think that depicting the final outcome in a character is better than depicting the process. To depict the "perfect hero" as being in a state where he has already gone through the volitional internal mental processes and struggles, before the reader encounters him... I think that's an aesthetic error, and the main non-Romantic Realist aspect of her fiction. I don't see him as being more aesthetically perfect even compared to Francisco -- who is portrayed as pretty damned flawless.
  13. There's a sense in which they are. Rand wanted her heroes to be perfect. So, it would not be enough to give Howard Roark his single-minded passion and rationality; she also had to have him be right in his choices. Rationality can lead to the "right" conclusion in the sense that it is the conclusion that all the available evidence, known to the decider at that point in time. points to that conclusion. Unfortunately, this is not how reality works: rationality does not lead to coming to the "retrospectively-right" conclusion 100% of the time. Rational people have to re-evaluate, correct mistake, an change path all the time. This is something that Rand's writing misses. Further, humans are not rational in every moment. We are rational animals... not just rational "beings". Our rationality allows us to be alert about our "animal" impulses and our irrational biases, and allows us to correct conclusions and actions that arise from them. So, once again, the process is not smooth. If you look at some of Rand's positive characters: Rearden is often used as an example, but you have Dominque and Steve Mallory and so on... then Rand does give them some flaws and idiosyncrasies. But, she seems to have had this idea that the hero should be flawless. So, if you want to look for a Howard Roark in the real world, ask yourself if the real world has got people who have a single-minded vision, and pursued it against contemporary advice, and had to fight all sort of battles, but came out vindicated and successful in the end. Turn on the NPR "How I Built This" podcast, and you should find a few examples.
  14. 19th century: Alexander Dumas (e.g. Count of Monte Cristo) Mark Twain Harry Beecher Stowe (Uncle Tom's Cabin) Nathaniel Hawthorn
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