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From the ashes

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This is a good time in my life. At 20 years old, I'm finally graduating high school and moving on to university, after years of struggling with depression that interfered with my studies. I'm also becoming more interested in Objectivism and applying to study at the Objectivist Academic Centre this summer. That's why I chose the username "Phoenix" -- to symbolize my rebirth from my own self-immolation.

I still don't consider myself an Objectivist (don't know enough about the epistemology, have issues with AR's account of concept formation blablabla) but I'm becoming less and less able to tolerate interaction with anyone other than Objectivists. I'm in desperate need of some like minds, which is why I joined this forum. I found it on a Google search about the practical problems of roads in a free market, and I was impressed with the knowledgeability, insight and level-headedness of the members. I look forward to getting to know you all better.

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Welcome Phoenix!

Your story sounds very familiar to me. I originally came from a Libertarian background, and I had no knowledge of Philosophy as I considered it to be a useless subject. Around the age of 24 I began reading Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead for the first time. I read it as mainly a blueprint for society, and I considered the portions that concerned the ethics of personal relationships to be, well, "filler". At this time I claimed to like Rand, but I didn't call myself an objectivist. Perhaps I simply didn't want to.

Like you, as I encountered more and more irrational people, I began noticing familiar patterns that made me think of characters in Atlas Shrugged. For instance, my brother-in-law IS James Taggart right down to the way he phrases his speech. After I became a father for the first time, I began thinking about what sort of moral code I would teach my son. Knowing that he would encounter irrational family, whether it is his nihilist uncle or his altruist (Baptist AND Socialist.... /shudder) grandmother, I wanted to prepare him to understand what is wrong with their thinking.

With the AS movie coming up, I thought about picking up Atlas Shrugged again, and this time specifically looking for inspiration for a moral code. This time, upon reading it, I was absolutely floored. When I look back at my passing interest in Rand from before, it seems like I didn't understand it. When there was something that I had an issue with, it was because I was judging it by a conventional morality. When I judged it by my morality, it all made sense. And then the world started making more sense. It was then that I chose to live my life by my own moral code.

I'm fairly new here as well, but nonetheless I welcome you! :)

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I'm also becoming more interested in Objectivism and applying to study at the Objectivist Academic Centre this summer

...

but I'm becoming less and less able to tolerate interaction with anyone other than Objectivists. I'm in desperate need of some like minds, which is why I joined this forum. I found it on a Google search about the practical problems of roads in a free market, and I was impressed with the knowledgeability, insight and level-headedness of the members. I look forward to getting to know you all better.

Not to discourage you from applying to the OAC, but I hear that they entry standards are pretty high these days, due to the fact that they get a lot of people trying to enroll. By all means go for it, and for all I know you will get in, however you may have to write a REALLY good essay for your entrance examination ( or however exactly it works nowadays).

While I sympathise with being less able to deal with non-Objectivists, I would be careful with taking this too far. There are a lot of non-Objectivists out there that are nonetheless really worth talking to, even though they do not know of / entirely agree with Objectivism. Hell some of them have never heard of it, but manage to come part-way to forming similar conclusions ( albiet in less explict terms). I unfortunately had to learn this the hard way.

But anyway : Welcome and I really do hope that you enjoy your time here.

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