Whimsy and studiousness from a nice lady who lives in Michigan and loves Objectivism.

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Name: Amy
Location: United States

I'm a good-natured person who enjoys living.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Objectivist Meeting at My House

Happy Spring-Time...

Robert and I will be hosting an Objectivist meeting this Saturday, April 26, starting at 530pm, and having dinner around 630pm. We hold Objectivist study meetings every fourth Saturday of each month. So if you live in south-eastern Michigan, please email me for more information. We'd love to meet you!

Oh, and don’t forget to celebrate Earth Day by purchasing your very own Carbon Debit.


Blogger Kelly said...

Awe, wish we could come, lady! We'll make a special trip up to MI one of these days and come to a meeting!

Man, we should have put a carbon debit on our wedding registry! I knew I forgot something!

April 23, 2008 8:36 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

Hi Kelly -

If you and Dan ever decide to visit - I will show you the nicest places and have you meet the nicest people!

April 25, 2008 2:19 PM  
Blogger Burgess Laughlin said...

Building a local Objectivist network can take a long time, but the rewards are worth it.

Two people in Portland 15 years ago began building a network that now spans the Seattle-Portland area. It is very comforting to know they are around:

April 25, 2008 2:46 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

Dear Burgess,

Thanks for the nice reference to the Seattle-Portland area Objectivist group. I really enjoyed the site. I really like your idea of having prospective members submit an email of background information and interests.

My husband and I have been assembling a network of pro-ARI Objectivist friends/colleagues for the last 15 years. My goal is to provide home-based meetings for serious study of Objectivism, and other philosophies for comparison.

In years past, study groups have devolved into directionless social groups, and I hope to accommodate those interested in learning in a more systematic way.

Thanks again!

April 29, 2008 9:19 AM  
Blogger Burgess Laughlin said...

Amy, here are some quick comments. If they puzzle you, please ask.

1. We have found that only about 10% (3 out of 30) are interested in study, though more are interested in sustained, respectful discussion. Not surprisingly more are interested in "philosophy for Rearden" than in "philosophy for Ragnar," as Ayn Rand put it.

2. The reason we ask about affiliations is to qualify our list. We don't want enemies of ARI with us. We are a social group not an evangelical group. It isn't fun to socialize with people who are not like-minded.

3. The reason we ask about CPL (about one-third have not yet formulated a CPL) is that it is an effective way to see if the person is serious about applying Objectivism to his life. The absence of a CPL doesn't mean he isn't applying Objectivism. But if understands the role of a CPL and doesn't care, then we start to wonder.

4. Our gatherings are primarily social. It is the pleasure of socializing with like-minded people that comes first. But particular individuals are free to go off into another room and discuss romantic-realism versus naturalism for four hours if they wish. Food is a common bond. Everyone loves to eat. Another idea, which I led last month, was a walking tour that combined comments about architecture and local politics and how they, sadly, interrelate. Each person (or couple) brought information about one of the sites.

Also, for the few intersted, we have found that ad hoc email study groups (no more than six weeks long) work best. E.g., our best one was picking topics from The Ayn Rand Lexicon, selected by the SG members themselves, and reading and discussing one entry per week--e.g., "Objectivism" and "Definitions."

April 29, 2008 10:53 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

Hi Burgess,

Thanks so much for your insightful comments. I will be thinking of them, along with my own plans and ideas, which I am still perfecting as I go.

I agree that the most important incentive of Objectivist gatherings is socializing. Our attendees are very social, and it’s a value to them to keep the study of Objectivism the main focus, and to discuss applying it. Field trips, movies, hikes, etc. are also included every so often. We also have games I’ve made up like "Guess the Lexicon Term," where a person would read the Lexicon definition, and others would guess the term. We’ve also played "Objectivist Jeopardy" (created by Helen).

I do like your approach to running a group, and I really like your practice of establishing a person’s central purpose in life, and the focus on applied philosophy. I really love hosting, and my husband is a very good cook, so we try to get the most out of it and enjoy making others happy.

Best Regards,

April 30, 2008 11:41 AM  

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