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  1. #1
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Default Theory: Objectivism vs. Relativism

    My Infallible Belief thread, the absolute truth thread, and a few others have lead me to an interesting conclusion. There are two realities. One is the objective reality that is independent of the mind, that we interpret through our sensory experiences, and which we percieve through measurement. The other is the relative reality, where we understand and evaluate the world in the contexts of experience, culture, history, etc. These realities can exist in perfect sync with one another, not unlike two sides of the same coin, until people use them to try to interpret concepts like morality and ethics.

    Those predisposed to the objective side will see things rationally and logically. They will argue that self interest is the most moral pursuit, and people should follow a "live and let live" philosophy. They will value humans only by how much they create and produce, and whether they can survive on their own.

    Those predisposed to the relativistic side will see things empathetically and compassionately because of their awareness of the biases within society. They will argue that social responsiblity is the most moral pursuit, and people should openly seek to fight inequalities and oppression. They will value humans by their potential.

    When it comes to constructs such as politics and religion, these two sides will be in eternal conflict with one another. Objectivists usually support individualism, egoism, and capitalism. Relativists usually support collectivism, altruism, and socialism.

    Each side in its purest form is destined for collapse. Human beings are social animals, and therefore, they cannot exist in a purely objectivistic society. At the same time, humans must look out for their own self interest in order to survive, so they can't possibly live in a purely relativistic society.

    Even though the value judgments of both sides are often in contention with one another, a balance of both is necessary in order to have an understanding of true reality. One that is composed of the objective perception of the physical universe, but also the relative experiences, behaviors, and cultures of human beings.

    I believe this is a universal psyche. Objectivists principles are for the self preservation and self fulfillment of the human species, and relativistic principles are for the cooperation and socialization of humans. Not unlike the id vs. the superego in Freud's psyche. A balance is necessary, and therefore an "ego" is established between the two realities.

    I would also say that T's are predisposed to seeing the world from an objectivist standpoint, whereas F's are predisposed to seeing the world from a relativistic standpoint.

    Thoughts.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

  2. #2

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    I believe EVERYTHING is relative, everything is subjective - whether independent of the mind or not. Same as I believe there is no universal truth, right, wrong, good or evil. I think it's all just a matter of perspective. But that doesn't necessarily make you compassionate, though I think it drives you to one of two extremes - either very compassionate or very cold.
    I can't be bothered to explain what I mean, or why, I'm too tired. xP
    I'll come back later.

    Why should being it necessarily lead to egoism and such? I know some people who are very morally objective - and they believe there is a RIGHT and a WRONG. Helping people is right, not doing so is wrong. So they help out others, because they think that's the right thing to do and don't question it.
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  3. #3

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    Well, from the list above: I am an individualist, capitalist, and egoist, and I believe in an absolute reality.

    But I believe that in their most creative forms, they are compatible with wanting to help others and acknowledges that biases exists in the world.

    I am not as much a normative egoist as I am a descriptive egoist. In that, I mean people do act in their own self-interest (no matter how much they may deny that they do), and to some extent, that means we should too. But there are limits. People do act altruistically at times. I admire the altruistic ideals as well, and in many ways share them. Human beings have a lot of potential, and a lot of good in them. Unfortunately, in aggregate, we often have to deal with the least common denominator. Even with dealing w/ the least common denominator, we are able to accomplish together what none of us could have alone....and yes the way way we do it is through capitalism.

    I am mostly a capitalist (and really dislike the notion of socialism), but believe that social justice can be worked into the market (if we are creative enough). Again, I admire the sentiment behind socialism, and share that ideal of having everyone provided for. But creating anything resembling welfare seems doomed in the long-term in my mind.

    I am, however, fiercely individualistic. I think the good of humanity is only allowed when individuals are allowed to be individuals. This is where we gain our collective diversity and therefore our collective strength. I am perfectly aware that people can do more as a group than as individuals, but they way we do more as a group is by allowing individuals to utilize their strengths while compensating for individual weakness with the strengths of others.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  4. #4
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EsoteriEccentri View Post
    I believe EVERYTHING is relative, everything is subjective - whether independent of the mind or not. Same as I believe there is no universal truth, right, wrong, good or evil. I think it's all just a matter of perspective. But that doesn't necessarily make you compassionate, though I think it drives you to one of two extremes - either very compassionate or very cold.
    I can't be bothered to explain what I mean, or why, I'm too tired. xP
    I'll come back later.

    Why should being it necessarily lead to egoism and such? I know some very objective people - and they believe there is a RIGHT and a WRONG. Helping people is right, not doing so is wrong. So they help out others, because they think that's the right thing to do and don't question it.
    Well that would make you a relativist. I'm speaking of course in the philosophical sense.

    Relativism

    And

    Objectivism

    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    Well, from the list above: I am an individualist, capitalist, and egoist, and I believe in an absolute reality.

    But I believe that in their most creative forms, they are compatible with wanting to help others and acknowledges that biases exists in the world.

    I am not as much a normative egoist as I am a descriptive egoist. In that, I mean people do act in their own self-interest (no matter how much they may deny that they do), and to some extent, that means we should too. But there are limits. People do act altruistically at times. I admire the altruistic ideals as well, and in many ways share them. Human beings have a lot of potential, and a lot of good in them. Unfortunately, in aggregate, we often have to deal with the least common denominator. Even with dealing w/ the least common denominator, we are able to accomplish together what none of us could have alone....and yes the way way we do it is through capitalism.

    I am mostly a capitalist (and really dislike the notion of socialism), but believe that social justice can be worked into the market (if we are creative enough). Again, I admire the sentiment behind socialism, and share that ideal of having everyone provided for. But creating anything resembling welfare seems doomed in the long-term in my mind.

    I am, however, fiercely individualistic. I think the good of humanity is only allowed when individuals are allowed to be individuals. This is where we gain our collective diversity and therefore our collective strength. I am perfectly aware that people can do more as a group than as individuals, but they way we do more as a group is by allowing individuals to utilize their strengths while compensating for individual weakness with the strengths of others.
    Interesting. I already have an F predisposed to relativism and a T predisposed to objectivism. I'm seeing some support for my theory already.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post
    Well that would make you a relativist. I'm speaking of course in the philosophical sense.

    Relativism

    And

    Objectivism



    Interesting. I already have an F predisposed to relativism and a T predisposed to objectivism. I'm seeing some support for my theory already.
    We'll see how long the pattern holds.

    Kiddo, so I believe you are an F, and have expressed some relativist leanings.
    Still, you posted this theory and are tying to see if it holds true.

    Is it that you've changed your mind about relativism about truth in general, and only hold relativism in terms of ethics, politics and religion?

    What exactly do you believe science is testing/seeking for, if there is no objective reality?

    Sorry to side-track, if this is out-of-bounds.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  6. #6
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    We'll see how long the pattern holds.

    Kiddo, so I believe you are an F, and have expressed some relativist leanings.
    Still, you posted this theory and are tying to see if it holds true.

    Is it that you've changed your mind about relativism about truth in general, and only hold relativism in terms of ethics, politics and religion?

    What exactly do you believe science is testing/seeking for, if there is no objective reality?

    Sorry to side-track, if this is out-of-bounds.
    Not at all. As I said in my OP. I've come to the conclusion that there are two realities. Not so much two different realities, but different ways of perceiving the same true reality. However, like any point of view, each reality is limited in it's scope.

    I believe science is the constant testing and retesting of established beliefs in an attempt to learn something new about what we thought we knew. We do so by measuring our perceptions that we gained of the physical universe from our sensory experiences. However, I believe it is still limited by our cognitive biases.

    Objectivism serves for the self preservation of the human species. It allows individuals to see the world without emotional distortion, and thus to act in their own self interest.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post
    Not at all. As I said in my OP. I've come to the conclusion that there are two realities. Not so much two different realities, but different ways of perceiving the same true reality. However, like any point of view, each reality is limited in it's scope.

    I believe science is the constant testing and retesting of established beliefs in an attempt to learn something new about what we thought we knew. We do so by measuring our perceptions that we gained of the physical universe from our sensory experiences. However, I believe it is still limited by our cognitive biases.

    Objectivism serves for the self preservation of the human species. It allows individuals to see the world without emotional distortion, and thus to act in their own self interest.
    That's a lot more clear. So it isn't that you deny the existence of objective reality then. It is more the assertion of the existence of subjective realities as well.

    In that case, I agree with you whole heartedly.

    In fact, I like to say that what we call "being objective" is actually the portioning off of our subjective realities to something that can be repeated in many other peoples' subjective realities.

    For me, the word objective, in the above sense is different from the use of "objective" in the existence of objective reality. The repeatability of subjective experience is the closest we humans will get to objective reality (which I still believe exists).

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  8. #8
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    For me, the word objective, in the above sense is different from the use of "objective" in the existence of objective reality. The repeatability of subjective experience is the closest we humans will get to objective reality (which I still believe exists).
    That isn't exactly what I am saying. First off, I'm not talking about the "subjective" but the "relative". Second, you are ultimately arguing that the nature of the physical universe is absolute, whereas I have a different theory which corresponds to my understanding that the universe is defined by two realities. But first, you have to understand the concept of a duality in order to understand my perspective.

    Imagine a clay vase. What defines it as a vase and not a lump of clay? It has a structure, which contains an empty space. The vase isn't defined simply by the clay that makes it up, but also, the space within the clay. It's simultaneously defined by both existence and non existence.

    I believe the physical universe exists simultaneously in both an absolute and non absolute form. That might seem like a stretch but remember a photon simultaneously exists in both a wave and particle form. And any dichotomy can be seen as a duality. Hot and cold for example, are the absence and presence of heat. They are simply different perspectives of the same thing. The existence and non existence of something that can be perceived through the senses.

    I believe objectivists try to understand the absolute form of the universe, whereas relativist try to understand the non absolute form of the universe. To continue the vase analogy, the objectivist is observing the clay and the relativist is observing the space within the clay. Both realities are essential in understanding the true nature and function of the universe.

    In the objective sense, the universe exists outside of the human mind. (It has a structure, like the clay) In the relativist sense, the universe doesn't exist without anyone to percieve it. (It loses it's function, much as if you were to fill the vase completely with clay and let it dry. It would no longer be a vase.) Therefore, the universe is simultaneously defined objectively and relativisticly.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post
    That isn't exactly what I am saying. You are ultimately arguing that the nature of the physical universe is absolute, whereas I have a different theory which corresponds to my understanding that the universe is defined by two realities. But first, you have to understand the concept of a duality in order to understand my perspective.

    Imagine a clay vase. What defines it as a vase and not a lump of clay? It has a structure, which contains an empty space. The vase isn't defined simply by the clay that makes it up, but also, the space within the clay. It's simultaneously defined by both existence and non existence.

    I believe the physical universe exists simultaneously in both an absolute and non absolute form. That might seem like a stretch but remember a photon simultaneously exists in both a wave and particle form. And any dichotomy can be seen as a duality. Hot and cold for example, are the absence and presence of heat. They are simply different perspectives of the same thing. The existence and non existence of something that can be perceived through the senses.

    I believe objectivists try to understand the absolute form of the universe, whereas relativist try to understand the non absolute form of the universe. To continue the vase analogy, the objectivist is observing the clay and the relativist is observing the space within the clay. Both realities are essential in understanding the true nature and function of the universe.
    I suppose we define what a vase is, and there is no objective reality to what makes a vase. A lot of things like that, a car, a chair, a fan, ... Not sure if that's what you mean. A rock is a paper-weight, a door-stop, or raw material for making dirt. That all depends on the way you look at it. Any closer to what you mean?

    As for the space within the clay, and in-fact, the space between any matter. This makes the bulk of objective reality. So I think objectivists look at this as well.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  10. #10
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    I suppose we define what a vase is, and there is no objective reality to what makes a vase. A lot of things like that, a car, a chair, a fan, ... Not sure if that's what you mean. A rock is a paper-weight, a door-stop, or raw material for making dirt. That all depends on the way you look at it. Any closer to what you mean?

    As for the space within the clay, and in-fact, the space between any matter. This makes the bulk of objective reality. So I think objectivists look at this as well.
    I was saying that the vase is defined by both what makes it up, the clay, and what doesn't, the space within it. If the space wasn't there, it wouldn't be a vase. Therefore it is defined by both what exists (the clay) and what doesn't exist (the space). It is simultaneously defined objectively (the clay) and relativistically (the space). I can't really explain a duality any better than that. Give it some time to sink in.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

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