Sense Perception & Volition



An excerpt from chapter 2 on Concept-Formation from Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand by Leonard Peikoff.

Metaphysics, in the Objectivist viewpoint, is a highly delimited subject. In essence, it identifies only the fact of existence (along with the corollaries of this fact). The subject does not study particular existents or undertake to guide men in the achievement of a goal.

The case is different with regard to the other, much more complex branch at the base of philosophy: epistemology, which does study a particular subject matter, and does offer men practical guidance. Epistemology is the science that studies the nature and means of human knowledge.

Epistemology is based on the premise that man can acquire knowledge only if he performs certain definite processes. This premise means that a man cannot accept ideas at random and count them as knowledge merely because he feels like it. Why not?

Read the rest in Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand.

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