By Spencer Myers
October 4th, 2012
When those behind a philosophy proclaim it idyllic though undermined by human flaws, they forget the mortal minds from which philosophies spring. Ideas can change the way humans think, but they cannot change human nature.
Human nature is not objective and why would one desire to change that? Objectivists yell for peace, for unity, for the advancement of society. Objectivists proclaim humanity logical. Objectivists proclaim a universal code of ethics. But no matter how loud they shout they will never change the chemical and spiritual mass of the human race. Humans are emotionally and morally diverse creatures as a result of evolution. High emotion pushes us to far greater accomplishments than logic. Humans are subjective.
I did not start at zero. I did not logically craft my morals and emotions and experiences. I started with a connection to my mother, was raised by a family, was taught by a society. This refutes the idea that you are your own human being from ground up. We are conceived by our surroundings. By the time I reached full logical capacity I experienced forces that no longer remain in my logical mind, but still push one way or the other. Though it is not as dramatic as Freud would tout, all of my decisions have inklings of these ghosts—and they are mine and only mine.
I remember being an angry young man of seventeen shouting at my parents, urging them for logical explanations behind their decisions—with Ayn Rand’s “The Fountainhead” in hand. I remember forming myself into an island. My dad took to calling me Spock. I grew up. I realized how much life leans on chance.
Success is the alignment of sentiment and opportunity—sentiments manifested from surroundings, opportunities provided by society. This is not to undermine the entrepreneur; there is a skill in spotting particular moments of chance and the man whose conviction is strong enough to push through economic struggle is truly laudable, but if this human—this player in the collective—refuses to acknowledge the lives he sits upon, then his hubris will bury him, and the dead who once granted him freedom through their labor, will take it all back.
Objectivists, don’t forget to be a human being. Don’t remove yourself by applying logic to where it does not apply. Do not assume that the ego is the only facet of life. Allow those innate forces to push. Accept society’s role in your conception. Draw from the full palette of the human mind and power your ideas with emotion.