- Education and Science
My Philosophy Human Nature
Looking back on what I have written so far I have found that people who do not understand my philosophy may be confused with my arguments. I also believe it would be a good idea for me to write out my philosophy just so that I can personally understand it as best I can.I call myself an Objective; however, I make a distinction between my philosophy and Objective philosophy.
Even though they may both be very similar, or exactly the same, I like to claim my philosophy, my understanding of truth, as my own and not the ideology of some group. Though I do follow most of the tenets of Objective philosophy I do not follow them just because I have proclaimed myself an Objective. I follow Objective philosophy because I understand it to be the truth. I have worked through its understanding on my own. Therefore, the following is My Philosophy and not the Objective Philosophy I choose to follow just because I am an Objective.
In order to understand how to construct government, or even if people need a government, and in order to understand how to act virtuously one must understand human nature. Specifically, one must understand what man is naturally entitled to; what are man's rights.
Firstly, begin with one person. What can a person do? A person can think, judge, sense, move, etc. A person has complete control over his mind and body. No one other person can control that person's mind and body. Sure he can throw a rock at that person and the impact of the rock will cause that person to move a little bit; however, in order to move that person force was necessary. The rock thrower cannot just move that person's body as simply as he can move his own body. Nor can he do the same thing for that person's mind. Therefore, that person is independent.
Of course, this is not much different from an animal. All animals have autonomy over their mind and body. All animals are independent. However, animals are not equal to humans, for if this were true animals would have the same rights as man. There is a distinct difference between man and animal. Man has the ability to reason. Animals do not have this ability. Animals are shackled by instinct. They only behave as how their genetics program them to behave. Even when an animal learns a parlor trick only its instincts are responding. Its instincts positively respond to conditioning in order to survive. It is just another form of adaptation. Man, however, can reason, meaning he can choose. Man does not just react to situations as instinct dictates. This is of course true in some circumstances, but instinct does not order man how to use a microwave. Instinct does not order a man to choose the color red over the color blue. Instinct does not indicate to man the difference between virtue and vice. These are all products of reason. With reason comes learning, creating, producing, and choosing.
Additionally, a person is also unique. No man is not exactly the same as any other man. Not even twins. On the shallowest level no person, except possibly twins, looks exactly the same as another person. However, on a deeper level, on that even distinguishes twins, no person has the exact same likes and dislikes as another person. Therefore, every man is truly unique, every man is an individual.Independence, reason, and individuality are the starting points. Since each man has these three elements each man has specific rights.
Firstly, independence means an individual's life is his own, no one else can control it. Individuality means an individual's life is unique from all other individuals' lives. Also, reason allows an individual to determine the actions and behaviors of his own life. Therefore, man has the natural right to life. He has the right not to be killed by any other man. That is unless he gives up that right, which can only be done if he illegitimately kills another individual.
Secondly, reason allows an individual to make choices. His independence means his choices are controlled only by himself, no one else has the ability to make choices for him. Also, his individuality is evident in the choices he makes and purposes for his choices. Therefore, man has the right to choose, the natural right of liberty.
Thirdly, an individual has different likes and dislikes from other people. A person's likes and dislikes are unique to him. Being independent means that only the individual can make himself happy. No other individual can control his happiness. Reason allows the individual to discriminate, to choose what makes him happy and unhappy. Consequently, man has the natural right to pursue happiness. This is obviously very different from the right to happiness. By having, individuality, independence, and reason an individual is responsible for his own happiness. If man had the right to happiness then he could control or demand that other people make him happy. The man would be dependent not independent. The man would be of a collective not and individual. This is why the 'pursue' is placed before happiness. In order to clarify the confusion.
Finally, an individual's labor is an extension of his self. An individual's labor is independent of all other individuals. As stated before no individual can cause another individual to move without force. An individual's labor follows reason. The individual has a purpose for why he is working. Also the individual's labor is unique, or individual. On the shallowest level he labors in a different fashion from others. On a deeper level his reason for laboring is different from others. Therefore, by laboring one extends himself, one creates property. In the wild, on unowned land, a man who labors picking up apples and acorns legitimately acquisitions those apples and acorns. His labor extends his self to the apples and acorns. The apples and acorns become his property. When laboring as part of a job, one exchanges his labor to earn money. Money is nothing more than a symbol of one's labor. These symbols of labor can then be exchanged for items. Money developed as society developed because one individual does not have the time to not only learn how to do everything but actually do everything. For example, in modern society there are computers, houses, cars, food, beds, bikes, bags, televisions, radios, counter tops, clothes, shoes, etc. An individual does not have the time to learn how to make all these things, from scratch mind you, nor does he have the time to actually make all these things and more, from scratch mind you. Therefore, money is created, symbols of labor, to exchange one's labor for items. In essence, money is just another step to extending one's self. Consequently, this means man has the right to property. Of course, this requires clarification. One must actually earn other property. For example, when a baby is born he is not immediately given a computer because he has the right to property. The right to property means the individual has the right to earn or own property. Meaning once the individual extends his self through labor and acquires property whether it be money or a computer no one can take it away.
This is my understanding of human nature. This in turn will lead an individual to understand if government is necessary, and if so what government is best. Also, it leads to understanding virtue and vice.
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