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"Sense of Life" and the crucial role of emotionality
Ayn Rand wrote that "A sense of life is a pre-conceptual equivalent of metaphysics, an emotional, subconsciously integrated appraisal of man and of existence.  It sets the nature of a man's emotional responses and the essence of his character."  In this lecture, Dr. Tara Smith explores a terrain that she says has been a topic neglected by (professional) Objectivist intellectuals.  

Notwithstanding her cautionary preface that her insights on "sense of life" offered in the course should be viewed as an effort toward ongoing intellectual mining, she proceeds to tackle this concept with clarity and passion--having been thrust into a renewed interest in the topic after rereading some of Ayn Rand's passages about "sense of life".  

What exactly does this emotion, coined for the first time by Ayn Rand, identify?  Does "sense of life" refer to emotions that are instantaneously felt during specific events, like one's first kiss, the sight of a cherished painting, or the birth of a child--or is it a constant in one's daily life? What can a person do to better acquaint himself with his own sense of life?  Why is the Objectivist ethics NOT compatible with the person who merely follows a course of rational action and thereby achieves his most cherished goals, but compatible ONLY with the person who follows such action and achieves such goals with highly emotional, joyful revelry (a seeming paradox given   Objectivism's upholding of rationality and logic as paramount to goal-achievement)...?

This course is a tour-de-force in both the content of the lectures and in their manner of delivery.  In my opinion, its excellence comes from the fact that Dr. Tara Smith often answers her theses by making a listener intimately privy to the inspiring soul-searching and thought processes which she herself appears to have employed to reach these answers.  This was my first encounter by this professor, and I am impassioned to hear more lectures or courses from her based on her name alone.      
From: John Paschalis | Date: 3/17/2013 3:01 AM
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A course about savoring life
A refreshing perspective, specially recommended for those who suffer from duty/intrinsicist psychological habits.

It is a slippery topic, but Tara Smith still managed to create a great course.
From: Ivan P | Date: 11/25/2017 12:19 PM
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