Scotty Stevens

Are Objectivists The Life & Soul Of The Party?

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Hi all,

I'm just getting into objectivism, and have read some Ayn Rand books. Also, this forum rocks ;-)

My question...

Can objectivists be the life and soul of the party?

I.e., in a room full of people - containing some undoubtedly unproven irrationalists - is the proper conduct to wait for people to prove themselves before meriting them with attention, thus rendering any bombastic, charismatic energy to the party at large as rewarding said possible irrationalists for bad behaviour?

Or am I way off, here..?

To freedom,

Scotty Stevens

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Hello, welcome to THE FORUM.

It depends what you mean. I've spent many a night laughing with people who I later discover to be utterly irrational, If I later discover someone to be something like religious, or socialist, I may well avoid them later.

But I don't act miserable just because one is within earshot.

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Can Objectivists be the life and soul of the party?

If you mean "life" and "soul" in the Objectivist sense, absolutely! As to how lively and/or soulful any particular Objectivist is likely to be, that varies with the individual Objectivist. Some Objectivists are quite extroverted -- like me -- and some are more quiet and reserved. It also varies with the particular party. I don't think I would have much to discuss with most of the guests at Lillian's anniversary party, but I'd have a blast at Midas Mulligan's soirée in the valley.

I.e., in a room full of people - containing some undoubtedly unproven irrationalists - is the proper conduct to wait for people to prove themselves before meriting them with attention, thus rendering any bombastic, charismatic energy to the party at large as rewarding said possible irrationalists for bad behaviour?

Or am I way off, here..?

You're way off.

There can be lots of reasons to engage a stranger in a social setting. He might look interesting or you may heard something about him that would make you want to know more about him. Then again, you may have reason to expect the worst of him but you're curious about what makes rotten people tick.

Speaking of curiosity, I wonder why you asked your question, what kind of answer you were expecting, and what kind of answer you were hoping for.

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I've spent many a night laughing with people who I later discover to be utterly irrational, If I later discover someone to be something like religious, or socialist, I may well avoid them later.

I wouldn't. If we have enough in common intellectually and sense of life-wise that I can spend a night laughing with them, they might very well be Good Objectivist Material ™. If so, my track record of "converting" such people to Objectivism is about 85%.

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Interesting, interesting...

Thanks, guys.

A strange question, I know ;-) but, to answer your question Betsy, my reason for asking the question was that, firstly, I'm a bit of a social butterfly in public gatherings - I'm not happy unless I'm regaling folk with my ridiculous tales, cracking jokes or generally getting down.

But as I've been delving deeper into objectivism, embracing the logical and rational, and shaking-off the unreasonable, dishonest traits that bedeviled me before - I suddenly wondered if my flamboyant antics were incongruent with my new outlook; an unlikely mix of rational judgement with overgenerous attention. This worried me, as I love to meet new people and explore humanity.

But your answer has put my mind at rest - thanks for that! I guess Ayn rand did say to give every person the benefit of the doubt that they're good, and then take it from there.

Scotty

P.S. If and when we ever DO get to have a 'Midas Mulligan's'-style soirée, mine's a Scotch on the rocks ;-)

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Sometimes the most difficult thing to do, is to be one's self. In a social setting, the urge to be, what we assume others would like, can be distracting. Just be yourself, and let the chips fall where they will. Of course if one is not happy with "one's self", then that is where efforts should be extended, rather than 'engineering' a cover-up. If you are a happy jokey fellow by nature, don't try to reign it in because you feel it doesn't suit who you wish to be. It also helps to accept that 99.9% of people you meet have never heard of Objectivism, and their views will reflect that fact. If one can accommodate this, one will avoid appearing pedantic or aloof.

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----------

I don't think I would have much to discuss with most of the guests at Lillian's anniversary party, but I'd have a blast at Midas Mulligan's soirée in the valley.

----------

You could discuss Francisco's money speech!! :wacko:

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Can Objectivists be the life and soul of the party?

If you mean "life" and "soul" in the Objectivist sense, absolutely! As to how lively and/or soulful any particular Objectivist is likely to be, that varies with the individual Objectivist. Some Objectivists are quite extroverted -- like me -- and some are more quiet and reserved. It also varies with the particular party. I don't think I would have much to discuss with most of the guests at Lillian's anniversary party, but I'd have a blast at Midas Mulligan's soirée in the valley.

I.e., in a room full of people - containing some undoubtedly unproven irrationalists - is the proper conduct to wait for people to prove themselves before meriting them with attention, thus rendering any bombastic, charismatic energy to the party at large as rewarding said possible irrationalists for bad behaviour?

Or am I way off, here..?

You're way off.

There can be lots of reasons to engage a stranger in a social setting. He might look interesting or you may heard something about him that would make you want to know more about him. Then again, you may have reason to expect the worst of him but you're curious about what makes rotten people tick.

Speaking of curiosity, I wonder why you asked your question, what kind of answer you were expecting, and what kind of answer you were hoping for.

I will second Betsy and add that even though someone is irrational they might still be a good friend. I've had worthwhile friendships with people who were Christians. There was usually a shared sense of life or some particular interest, and as long as the conversation never drifted toward unresolved differences it was fun to be around them. However, it is true that these friendships were not as fulfilling as one with an Objectivist; the respect I had for them only went so far. On the other hand, I've met Objectivists who, though they were reasonable and good people, I just couldn't find any... common ground(?) with them and the friendship sputtered and stalled-out at acquaintance stage.

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Can Objectivists be the life and soul of the party?

If you mean "life" and "soul" in the Objectivist sense, absolutely! As to how lively and/or soulful any particular Objectivist is likely to be, that varies with the individual Objectivist. Some Objectivists are quite extroverted -- like me -- and some are more quiet and reserved. It also varies with the particular party. I don't think I would have much to discuss with most of the guests at Lillian's anniversary party, but I'd have a blast at Midas Mulligan's soirée in the valley.

I.e., in a room full of people - containing some undoubtedly unproven irrationalists - is the proper conduct to wait for people to prove themselves before meriting them with attention, thus rendering any bombastic, charismatic energy to the party at large as rewarding said possible irrationalists for bad behaviour?

Or am I way off, here..?

You're way off.

There can be lots of reasons to engage a stranger in a social setting. He might look interesting or you may heard something about him that would make you want to know more about him. Then again, you may have reason to expect the worst of him but you're curious about what makes rotten people tick.

Speaking of curiosity, I wonder why you asked your question, what kind of answer you were expecting, and what kind of answer you were hoping for.

I will second Betsy and add that even though someone is irrational they might still be a good friend. I've had worthwhile friendships with people who were Christians. There was usually a shared sense of life or some particular interest, and as long as the conversation never drifted toward unresolved differences it was fun to be around them. However, it is true that these friendships were not as fulfilling as one with an Objectivist; the respect I had for them only went so far. On the other hand, I've met Objectivists who, though they were reasonable and good people, I just couldn't find any... common ground(?) with them and the friendship sputtered and stalled-out at acquaintance stage.

Interesting...

I also have religious friends, ambitious go-getters at that, whom I get on with excellently. We all know where we stand, and have deep discussions about religion, which normally end with all parties thinking (me KNOWING ;-) we are right, before changing the subject onto something else!

Strangely, I don't have any objectivist friends in the offline world yet - but then it is early days for me.

Thanks again, all!

Scotty

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firstly, I'm a bit of a social butterfly in public gatherings - I'm not happy unless I'm regaling folk with my ridiculous tales, cracking jokes or generally getting down.

You sound fun! Never ever ever change this, because this is you in your element.

I suddenly wondered if my flamboyant antics were incongruent with my new outlook

Good thing it's not! :lol: The world would be a boring place then.

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