Language is primarily a means of labelling concepts, with communication being a secondary function. It enables us to organise our knowledge of reality and communicate it with others. If precise thinking is our goal, the concepts we use must have precise definitions so as to preserve precise meaning. Here I define the concepts I use at lawfulrebel.com and in the Podcast for thinking people – “Living outside the Matrix”. It is not my intention to change any meanings but to bring clarity to them. Dictionary definitions these days are vague and imprecise – sometimes just wrong! The webster online dictionary for example offers a definition of human rights, as “The rights of the individual to cultural, social, economic, and educational opportunities as provided by society, e.g., right to work, right to education, and right to social security.” But this definition is incorrect. How can anyone have a right to opportunities provided by society without addressing the question ‘At who’s expense?’ The implication is, at the expense of those others who constitute society. But no one can claim the right to a good or service which someone else has to produce. Such a so-called right would then enslave another to produce it. There is no such thing as the right to enslave another.
It is for reasons such as this that we must define our terms. Where I borrow from a particular dictionary it is credited. Some definitions are my own, others are credited to the author.
Axioms: An axiom is a statement that identifies the base of knowledge and of any further statement pertaining to that knowledge, a statement necessarily contained in all others, whether any particular speaker chooses to identify it or not. An axiom is a proposition that defeats its opponents by the fact that they have to accept it and use it in the process of any attempt to deny it. [Ayn Rand – For The New Intellectual]
Believe: To accept something as true, usually but not necessarily with some supporting evidence
Concept: A concept is a mental integration of 2 or more units possessing the same distinguishing characteristic(s) with their particular measurements omitted. They are isolated by a process of abstraction and united by a specific definition. [Ayn Rand]
Consciousness: The faculty of identifying that which exists.
Education: A self generated process of acquiring the cognitive means to gain knowledge, and then of gaining specific knowledge of reality, with the purpose of living a life on earth. [Nigel Howitt]
Faculty: Ability to act or perform, capacity for any natural function, [websters] One of the inherent cognitive or perceptual powers of the mind [Wordnet] An inherent mental or physical power [Dictionary v2.2.1]
Faith: The acceptance of an idea without evidence or proof, without sensory evidence or rational demonstration. [Nathaniel Branden]
Home Education: Facilitating the self-education of young people primarily in the real life home environment. [Nigel Howitt]
Intellectual Sovereignty: Trust in one’s own mental process and judgment, being guided by and being confident in one’s own intellectual authority. Taking the trouble to inform one’s self, and taking responsibility for all one’s own decisions irrespective of (and if necessary contrary to) popular opinion.
Logic: The art of non-contradictory identification. [Ayn Rand]
Love: to love someone is to value them, to love something is to value it [Ayn Rand]
The Matrix: mass unconscious dependency culture; the result of un-thinking and irrationality on a cultural scale; a society of programmed people unaware of the many guiding assumptions and philosophical convictions they absorb by osmosis from the media, from propaganda, from the herd.
Being in the Matrix: Habitually making lifestyle-critical choices based upon the judgment of others, often in disregard of empirical evidence to the contrary. [Nigel Howitt]
Living outside the Matrix: Habitually making considered lifestyle-critical choices based exclusively upon one’s own rational judgment having examined the empirical evidence. [Nigel Howitt]
Mysticism: The acceptance of ideas without any supporting evidence in reality; the claim to another reality which we have no ability to perceive using our human senses; the claim to knowledge acquired by revelation, intuition or just ‘knowing’, in the absence of proof and even in defiance of proof; the claim to some other reality other than the one in which we live. [Nigel Howitt]
Rational: In accordance with reason, logical
Reality: Reality is that which exists, the unreal does not exist.
Reason: Is the faculty that identifies and integrates the material provided by mans senses, thinking is the process, logic is the method. [Ayn Rand]
(Individual) Rights: A right is a moral principle defining and sanctioning a man’s freedom of action in a social context. There is only one fundamental right (all the others are its consequences or corollaries), a man’s right to his own life. Life is a process of self-sustaining and self-generated action. The right to life means the right engage in self-sustaining and self-regulated action – which means; the freedom to take all the actions required by the nature of a rational being for the support and furtherance, the fulfilment and the enjoyment of his own life.
The concept of a ‘right’ pertains only to action – specifically to freedom of action. It means freedom from physical compulsion, coercion or interference by other men. Thus for every individual , a right is the moral sanction of a positive – of his freedom to act on his own judgment, for his own goals, on his own voluntary un-coerced choice. As to his neighbours, his rights pose no obligations on them except of a negative kind – to abstain from violating his rights.
The right to life is the source of all rights – and the right to property is their only implementation. Without property rights no other rights are possible. Since man has to sustain his life by his own effort, the man who has no right to the product of his effort has no means to sustain his life. The man who produces while others dispose of his product is a slave. Bear in mind that the right to property is a right to action, like all the others: it is not the right to an object, but to the action and the consequences of producing or earning that object. It is not a guarantee that a man will earn any property, but only a guarantee that he will own it if he earns it. It is the right to gain, keep, to use and to dispose of material values. [Ayn Rand – The Virtue of Selfishness]
Modern Government Schooling: An institution in which children are detained in buildings, usually made of concrete and glass, with no pleasing aesthetic features, adorned with CCTV cameras and with a high perimeter fence. Between specific hours attendance of classes is compulsory as part of a structured framework of study with a prescribed curriculum. The intended goal being that the children achieve an education. [Nigel Howitt]
Soul: The concept of soul represents mans consciousness, his means of perceiving reality.
Spirit/Spirituality: The terms soul, spirit and spirituality rationally refer to mans consciousness. This is in contrast to the mystical meaning of something non-material, or a disembodied consciousness (a contradiction in terms). The mystical definition does not refer to spirit as being consciousness. It is defined as being something other worldly and unknowable rather than the self evident given that consciousness is.
Thinking: A process of purposeful mental activity with the acquisition of knowledge as its goal; the identification of aspects of reality…
Truth: That which accords with reality.
The Universe: All that exists.