See also:

Morality Needs No God
by Joseph Rowlands

Philosophy is inescapable.

Your philosophy is your worldview, which is a backdrop for all thought and a context for all knowledge. The decision about examining philosophy is between: 1) to make your philosophy explicit, or 2) to be a slave to the subconscious notions, principles, and other people's philosophies picked up throughout life. To ignore the topic of philosophy is to be doomed to the second choice. Examining your philosophy will allow you to discover and root out all errors and contradictions and allow you to more easily acquire knowledge and to think in concepts rather than concretes.

A philosophic system is an integrated view of existence. As a human being, you have no choice about the fact that you need a philosophy. Your only choice is whether you define your philosophy by a conscious, rational, disciplined process of thought and scrupulously logical deliberation -- or let your subconscious accumulate a junk heap of unwarranted conclusions, false generalizations, undefined contradictions, undigested slogans, unidentified wishes, doubts and fears, thrown together by chance, but integrated by your subconscious into a kind of mongrel philosophy and fused into a single, solid weight: self-doubt, like a ball and chain in the place where your mind's wings should have grown. Ayn Rand, Philosophy: Who Needs It

This site explores the importance of philosophy and presents many of the important concepts and questions that must be considered. It will tell you how to base your philosophy on reason rather than randomness, which will lead to clarity, certainty, success, and happiness. The alternative to an explicit rational philosophy is an indifference that leads to confusion and often failure.

Philosophy is not some arcane field important only to old men in ivory towers. It explicitly asks and answers fundamental, inescapable questions such as "How can I know something?" and "What should I do?" Without some answer to these questions, no knowledge or action is possible. Again, the only choice is to explicitly examine the underlying assumptions involved or to be at the mercy of the random flotsam picked up throughout life.


You can start by learning the major ideas and how they're related by looking at the Concept Chart and clicking on the various concepts, which index into the more complete set of information contained in the Five Branches of Philosophy section.



Site Map

Concept Chart

Introduction to the Five Branches of Philosophy

Metaphysics

Axiom
Existence Exists
Identity
Consciousness
Reality is Absolute: The Primacy of Existence
Causality
Nothing
Contradiction
An Entity is a Sum of Its Parts
Mental Entities
The Metaphysical Versus the Man-Made

Epistemology

Philosophy
Objectivity
Logic
Reason
Knowledge
Standard Of Evaluation
Perception
Concepts
Definitions
Words
Emotions
Integration
Values
Certainty
Deduction
Induction/Abstraction
Focus
Evasion
Context
Fundamentals
Knowledge is Hierarchical
The Arbitrary

Ethics

Life as the Moral Standard
Morality is a Guide to Living
Reason is Man's Means of Survival
Values
Virtue
Self-Interest
Harmony of Interests
Self Reliance / Independence
Productiveness
Integrity
Honesty
Pride
Justice
Benevolence
Rationality
Metaphysical Justice
Free Will
Courage
Trader Principle

Politics

The Initiation of Force
Rights

  • Right to Life
  • Right to Liberty
  • Right to Property
  • Right to the Pursuit of Happiness
  • Right to Free Speech
  • Right to Self Defense

    Necessity of Government
    The Proper Role of Government
    Laissez Faire Capitalism
    Taxation
    Law
    Rule of Law
    Constitutions
    Separation of Powers
    Checks and Balances
    Federalism
    An Armed Populace: The Right to Bear Arms
    Trial by Jury
    Voting
    Capitalism
    Financing a Government
    The Death Penalty
    Abortion
    Fraud

    Esthetics

    Man's need for art
    Art
    Sense Of Life
    Literature
    Painting
    Sculpture
    Music
    Drama
    Dance
    Song

    Misbegotten Notions:

    Mystical Metaphysics

    Primacy of Consciousness
    Interdependence Theory
    Omnipotence
    God
    Malevolent Universe Premise
    Miracles

    Irrational Epistemology

    Faith
    A Priori Knowledge
    Philosopher's Deduction Fallacy
    Subjectivism
    Polylogism
    Determinism
    Skepticism

    Evil Ethics

    Subjective Value
    Intrinsic Value
    Original Sin
    Altruism
    Collectivism
    Egalitarianism
    Environmentalism
    The Ethics of Intentions
    Duty
    Compromise
    Pacifism
    Moral Relativism
    Multiculturalism
    Morality as a limit on action
    Hedonism
    Humility
    Vegetarianism

    Bloody Politics

    Socialism
    Communism
    Fascism
    Anarchism
    Anarcho-Capitalism
    Adjustment to Government Intervention
    The Poor Suffer Under Capitalism
    Military Draft
    Zoning Laws
    Public Schools
    Redistribution of Wealth
    Public Welfare
    Roads and Infrastructure
    Democracy
    Antitrust
    Positive Rights
    A "Mixed" Economy
    Government Regulations (The FDA)
    Money
    Social Security
    Campaign Finance Reform

    Post-Modern Esthetics

    Everything is Art
    Destruction of Meaning
    Innovation in Art

    Dictionary of Concepts


    The content of this website is primarily based on Ayn Rand's philosophy, Objectivism.

    Objectivism 101
    Objectivism 101


  • Copyright 2001 by Jeff Landauer and Joseph Rowlands