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Loving Life: The Morality of Self-Interest and the Facts that Support It Paperback


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Loving Life: The Morality of Self-Interest and the Facts that Support It + Understanding Objectivism: A Guide to Learning Ayn Rand's Philosophy + The DIM Hypothesis: Why the Lights of the West Are Going Out
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Glen Allen Pr Llc (January 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0971373701
  • ISBN-13: 978-0971373709
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 5.5 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #217,802 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"...Biddle demolishes the conventional wisdom that holds sacrifice as a moral ideal and offers...a compelling alternative." -- Center for the Advancement of Capitalism

"...challenging, informative, thoughtful.... Loving Life is very highly recommended reading...." -- Midwest Book Review

"...clear, simple, and...succinct.... [Biddle] performs effectively the difficult task of taking abstract moral principles and concretizing them...." -- The Intellectual Activist

"From start to finish, Loving Life engages the reader with its lively conversational style." -- The Ayn Rand Bookstore

From the Publisher

_Loving Life_ begins by exposing the baseless nature of the various moralities that call for human sacrifice and lead to human suffering; it then shows how a true morality is derived logically from observable facts and what such a morality implies--personally, socially, and politically. With clarity and elegance, Biddle demonstrates the principles, values, and virtues that are essential to human life and happiness; and he defines and defends the social and political conditions that are required for people to live together as civilized beings. His lucid discussion ranges from the fundamental cause of the massacre at Columbine High School to why Islamic terrorists are committed altruists; from what is wrong with subjectivism to why religion is a form of subjectivism; from the objective foundation of morality to the universal requirements of personal happiness; from the essence of moral virtue to why laissez-faire capitalism is the only moral social system. This book is as timely as it is profound.

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Customer Reviews

This is a book everybody should read.
Porfirio Cristaldo
Craig Biddle presents Objectivism in a clear an concise manner, providing an excellent introduction to the philosophy of Ayn Rand.
Phillip W. Daniel Jr.
The writing style is crisp and very accessible.
john cerasuolo

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Nicholas Provenzo on September 5, 2002
Format: Paperback
The material abundance and individual freedom that is the hallmark of capitalism rests on upon the ethics of self-interest, but today perhaps no code of morality is more misunderstood and maligned. In a profound yet easily accessible text, Craig Biddle demolishes the conventional wisdom that holds sacrifice as a moral ideal and offers the honest reader a compelling alternative.
Through examples drawn from today's headlines, historical analysis and the thoughtful examination of leading intellectual thinkers, Loving Life clearly demonstrates that morality is a matter not of divine revelation or social convention or personal opinion-but, rather, of the factual requirements of human life and happiness. Biddle shows how a true morality is derived logically from observable facts, what in essence such a morality demands, and why it is a matter of pure self-interest.
Loving Life exposes the baseless nature of the various moralities that call for human sacrifice and lead to human suffering and shows how a true morality is derived logically from observable facts and what such a morality implies-personally, socially, and politically. With clarity and elegance, Biddle demonstrates the principles, values, and virtues that are essential to human life and happiness; and he defines and defends the social and political conditions that are required for people to live together as civilized beings.
This book is the perfect book to give to a friend or relative who needs an intellectual jumpstart in their lives.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on April 13, 2002
Format: Paperback
Loving Life: The Morality Of Self-Interest And The Facts That Support It by Craig Biddle is a challenging, informative, thoughtful treatise about the true meaning of ethics. Putting forth that morality does not come from God, social convention, personal opinion, or limiting oneself to what is culturally accepted, but rather embodied in reason, logic, cause and effect, and understanding the importance and value of human life and happiness. Loving Life is a fresh voice of reason about truly living well and pursuing happiness within ethical bounds that are righteous for the best reason of all - because they are rationally constructed out of respect and love for all other human beings. Loving Life is very highly recommended reading for both students of ethics and morality, as well as the non-specialist general readers with an interest in philosophy.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on August 8, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The primary virtue of the this book is a complete demolition of the typical Conservative claim that without God there is no morality. Craig Biddle does an excellent job of refuting all sides (the religious and personal or social subjectivist) of that particular mistaken proposition in all their manifestations and proves his points both with authoritative quotes from the various advocates and helpful examples that serve to clarify the ideas in a manner far better than I've seen in virtually all presentations of this sort.
In addition Mr. Biddle does not just stop there but spends the rest of the book presenting the proper alternative to the false God/Anything Goes dichotomy -- a morality based of reason and principled self-intest. He shows how morality can be derived from facts and what the specifics of such a fact-based morality would look like. He concludes by outlining the essential principle of politics -- individual rights.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Harrysson Bengt Ake on February 18, 2003
Format: Paperback
A clear, simple and highly enjoyable presentation of the morality of self-interest. "The purpose of morality is to teach you, not to suffer and die, but to enjoy yourself and live." -Ayn Rand
Morality is a code of values, based on certain requirements of human survival. The author shows how a proper morality must be based on certain facts of reality, facts that makes human life and happiness possible.
It's your life! Are you living it? For your own well-being and happiness - or somebody else's? The ideas presented in this book have the power to change your life. What are you waiting for? Go get this book - now!
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Alex Epstein on January 26, 2002
Format: Paperback
"If you want to live your life to the fullest, if you want to achieve the greatest happiness possible, this book is for you. It is about the essential means to that end: a proper code of values--a proper morality." Thus begins _Loving Life_, and the rest of the book lives up to this claim.
_Loving Life_ gives you two crucial values. It a) shows how morality is a matter of objective fact, not subjective whim or religious dogma and b) shows you clearly and concretely the meaning of the morality of rational self-interest and how to use it to improve your life.
If are already familiar with rational selfishness/the Objectivist ethics, this book--with its many illuminating descriptions and examples--will give you a greater understanding of the morality.
Unconditionally recommended.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Diana M Hsieh on November 18, 2005
Format: Paperback
_Loving Life_ is an excellent short introduction to Ayn Rand's ethics, particularly for people who find her writings too condensed or too polemical. Unlike the convoluted and rationalistic writings typically produced by academics, Craig Biddle's writing is clear and engaging. His plethora of examples not only illustrate the ideas under discussion, but also show their real-life importance.

I particularly enjoyed Biddle's discussion of physical force as invalidating an individual's judgment in Chapter 7 since so many people struggle to understand that point. (I had some minor technical quibbles with the book, most notably the confusing structure in the discussion of the virtues of rationality and productiveness. Those problems are unlikely to cause any significant confusion in the mind of the reader, however.)

I can highly recommend the book for someone curious about Ayn Rand's ethics.
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