NEOS brings rational minds together to promote the ideas of Ayn Rand.
NEOS is student organization, but is open to all who want to apply Objectivism to their lives and to those engaged in the rationally selfish pursuit of individual happiness. The actual organization is currently operating at the Amherst campus of the University of Massachusetts, and is open to the Five College consortium in the area. Anyone eager to learn more about and spread Objectivism is invited to start their own branch of NEOS and to join us in our meetings and activities.
NEOS is for
Individuals who love life, constantly pursue happiness, and seek to advance Objectivism. NEOS will help members to affirm and work for what they believe in, and to establish a moral basis for change on political and economic issues.
Artists who project the best within and among us, and seek to embody the joy and glory of life through the visual and performing arts. NEOS will promote Romantic Realism as the highest school of art and work to get Ayn Rand’s plays back in production.
Businessmen who are the un-recognized benefactors of humanity; their productive minds and endeavors move the world forward. NEOS will educate people about the competitive advantage that Objectivism offers businessmen and other innovators.
Educators who want to help students develop their conceptual faculty, apply their self-made mental power, and realize their full potential. NEOS will work with educators to introduce their students to philosophy, and promote the works of Ayn Rand in schools, bookstores, and libraries.
Philosophers who understand that in order to be happy and successful, people need consistent, consciously realized values and goals. NEOS will provide opportunities for them to advance the practical philosophy of life and reason by regularly hosting speakers on college campuses.
NEOS is working to shape the world in the image of the ideals presented in Ayn Rand’s novel Atlas Shrugged.
What are those ideals?
The Ideal Society: The ideal society is a free society. In a free society men deal with each other by means of trade—which means, by mutual consent to mutual benefit. If a man makes good decisions, then he benefits, and others will likely benefit as well. If a man makes bad decisions, no one is harmed besides himself. Trade is the principle of a free society and of businessmen; force is the principle of Statism and of tyrants. Force is used to make one group of people support the lives of others—be it to support a King, an Aristocracy, or the Poor. In a free society, however, each man is freed from bondage to other men. Freedom means that each man has the right to live for his own sake—and no man is required to live for others. In Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand encapsulates the essence of freedom in this oath: “I swear, by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another to live for mine.” I am free from you and you are free from me. We each have to right to our own lives; this right is sacred; and the only job of government is to protect this right. Did the Founding Fathers free us from bondage to the King only to bind us in servitude to our fellow man? Or, were we supposed to be free—completely free—from all external claims upon our lives? NEOS holds that all men are endowed with natural liberty; that each man has a right to his own life; that the government’s only job is to protect that right; and that any government which holds men in bondage to each other is evil. NEOS will fight to protect our individual rights and reinstate our freedom.
The Ideal Man: The ideal man is a fully rational man. He is a free man and a selfish man—he does not live for the sake of others and does not ask others to live for his. He is the hero of his own life, fighting to achieve the best within him. Materially, he chooses long range goals and builds towards them, day by day, until they are achieved. Psychologically, he is a fully integrated man—meaning that his emotions and his rational choices are one. There is no conflict between his desires and his judgments. He is successful, he is at peace, he is happy. The best part is: anyone can achieve this ideal—it is within the nature of man; and, therefore, within your reach. The only thing standing between you and the best within you is the ideas that you hold. If a man holds the wrong ideas, he will be unfit to achieve his goals. On the other hand, if a man hold the right ideas—that is, if he holds a completely rational philosophy—there is no limit to his potential for success and happiness. Objectivism is a completely rational philosophy and therefore is the key to achieving the best within you. NEOS seeks to project the image of the ideal man as presented in Atlas Shrugged by promoting Objectivism, the philosophy which makes the ideal man possible.
American Renaissance: The United States of America was the first country to be founded on the principles of individual rights. Historically and philosophically, America comes closer than any other country to fully realizing an ideal society of ideal men. Why has it not reached that ideal? Recall that “The only thing standing between you and the best within you is the ideas that you hold. If a man holds the wrong ideas, he will be unfit to achieve his goals.” The same may be said for a country; the only thing standing between America and the realization of the best within it and everyone in it, is the idea of altruism. Altruism, an anti-philosophy of faith-based, duty-driven self-sacrifice has become the dominant philosophical trend. Institutionalized altruism, that is, forced self-sacrifice, has kept America and every American from reaching their full potential. Altruism is anti-America, anti-reason, anti-man and anti-life. America is pro-reason, pro-man, pro-happiness, pro-life (in a philosophical sense). It is with this knowledge that Ayn Rand once wrote:
“What this country needs is a PHILOSOPHICAL revolution — a rebellion against the Kantian tradition — in the name of the first of our Founding Fathers: Aristotle. This means a reassertion of the supremacy of reason, with its consequences: individualism, freedom, progress, civilization. What political system would it lead to? An untried one: full, Laissez-Faire Capitalism.”
An American Renaissance — a philosophical revolution of reason, self-interest, and Capitalism — will allow for an ideal society for come forth, thereby allowing the ideal man to live and be fully happy.