The Importance of Self

Peter Voss (
Tue, 24 Sep 1996 12:24:25 -0700

At 07:07 PM 24/9/96 +0200, Anders wrote:

>This of course depends a lot on your views of death; if you regard
>yourself as supremely important in your own universe, then you should
>avoid all risks, while if you regard your existence as just another fun
>aspect of the universe you can take some risks (up to a limit determined
>by how non-I-centered you are).

If you value yourself you don't avoid all risks. Risks are an essential
aspect of living a full life. Survival without flourishing is not valuing

>Personally I avoid unnecessary risks and try to plan for possible future
>contingencies, but I do not regard my survival as the one and only
>driving force of my existence.

We probably all agree that our own *survival* is not the one and only
driving force, however, if not our own survival then what? Feelings? Where
do they come from? Subconscious evaluations. How do we *consciously*
evaluate them? Some of our emotions are destructive to us. Values? How do we
establish those? How do we set our goals?

Whatever we live for has to be based on our values, not so? Theses values
are on a spectrum from subconscious (emotions) to conscious (rational).

Anders, and others: What are those other driving forces? Especially ones
that you may consider more important than your own survival and happiness?

I personally strive to have all my values, emotions and actions focused on
personal survival and well-being - important aspects of which include
meaningful human relationships and a free and healthy society. I consider
reason to be the best method to achieve these goals - and emotions essential
to enjoying them.


'The Good Life is one inspired by Love and guided by Knowledge' - Bertrand