Until we can literally see the world through another person's eyes, feel everything they can percieve, and experience every emotion they have, we can only play at being objective. But playing is the first step of learning.

Maybe I did the wrong thing by creating this writeup as a 'thing', implying the existence of objectivity. It does not exist except as a concept, for I am a human. Everything I perceive has a frame of reference, both in the actual reception of stimuli, and in its absorption. To give a very basic example: a child would describe a 5 foot person as being tall, whereas any adult knows this person is actually short. It's all relative.

With all due respect, Tsarren's writeup has only served to prove my point. If I can see the world through another's eyes, then once again I am being subjective. Anything I see, hear feel, or think is subjective, I internalize it based on the way it relates to me. If I can feel everything another perceives, and experience every emotion they have had, I am just seeing it the way it relates to them. But I am not seeing it objectively. Because I am still interpreting.

I can't help interpreting. This is how my body, mind and heart respond to stimuli. They interpret, absorb, and assimilate by using frames of reference. (Similar to feeling like you're moving when you're really sitting still, or touching your warm arm with cold hands).

For convenience's sake, or perhaps for lack of the real thing, we call our attempts at detatchedness objective viewpoints, but there is no state of true objectivity.

Being objective affords one a certain amount of laditude when they really wish to make a statement. It is as simple as the story of The Boy Who Cried Wolf; If you continuously write subjectively, people tend to take your writing less seriously. I always stand up and notice when religiously objective authors post something with a little fire in it because they probably wouldn't be voicing a strong opinion unless they really believed that it was something worth having strong opinons about.

Objectivity also tends to offer the reader more information so that they can make up their own mind rather than have it made up for them. Misleading the reader isn't really good or bad per se, but again--you are taken less seriously by people who read your work if they are constantly wary that you are trying to snow-job them.

Eventually, people become widely viewed as nothing more than a loud mouth if all they do is write heated subjectively oriented write-ups. This can render the author effectively impotent which is no help to anyone, least of all the author.

To be objective: one must look at a problem, idea, or thing from every possible angle and point of view. But there’s a huge problem with the way in which people view the concept of objectivity. By definition, one who is objective rejects all subjective thought. One does this on the grounds that subjective thought is either groundless or without sufficient evidence to support it. Here is a classic example of a clash between subjective and objective thought.

Subjective Thought: “All black people tip white servers poorly”

Objective Thought: “It is wrong to say that all black people tip white servers poorly for two reasons. One: There is not a person alive who can make argument that all black people tip white servers poorly because there is not a person alive who knows all black people. Two: I am a white server and have actually been tipped well by black people.”

If the facts stated by the Objective Thought are true, and I don’t think anybody will be quick to say that they aren’t, then one could say that the logic of the Objective Thought is infallible. But the Objective Thought is actually a fallacy, and that would be because it included the word “wrong”. By including that word the Objective Thought assumed the moral high ground, which is no place to be if you are striving for objectivity.

When I say that something is good, or that something is bad; it is because I “know” it to be good or bad. But why do I know some things to be good and some things to be bad? What reference do I have to go by? What rules can I follow for defining a thing as good or bad? There aren’t any unless you believe in a god or higher power. (This argument is operating under the assumption that anyone who believes in a god are higher power is subjective) The truly objective person cannot ignore the fact that there is no obvious reason to label a particular kind of thought as good or bad.

The statement made by the Objective Thought would have been one hundred percent correct had it not used the word “wrong” or any other kind of word that would have applied morality to the argument. What this means is that a subjective thought can be shown to be completely illogical, but one can never label such a thought as wrong, foolish, stupid, ect. and claim to be objective at the same time.

Now I hope that people will understand exactly what kind of thought (objective or subjective) they are subscribing to when they start calling things good or bad. That doesn’t mean I want people to stop calling things good and bad. If anything people should continue do that. If only so many of them would stop claiming to be objective once they start making moral judgments.

Ob`jec*tiv"i*ty (?), n. [Cf.F. objectivit'e.]

The state, quality, or relation of being objective; character of the object or of the objective.

The calm, the cheerfulness, the disinterested objectivity have disappeared [in the life of the Greeks]. M. Arnold.


© Webster 1913.

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