Rational selfishness

Rational selfishness

Rational selfishness, a term generally related to Ayn Rand's Objectivist philosophy, refers to a person's efforts to look after their own well-being, to cultivate the self and achieve goals for the good of the self. This is, in essence, the basic rule of capitalism, of which Ayn Rand was an advocate.

Further, Ayn Rand discusses "rational self-interest" in which one's happiness, in limited circumstances, can be enhanced by helping others; a related term is enlightened self-interest. Critics argue that the boundaries of rational self-interest are fuzzy and that much misery can be neglected. Rand counters that various ideologies coerce individuals into self-sacrifice. Rand makes a point to argue against altruism, and what she views as martyrdom.

ee also

*Rational egoism
*Enlightened self-interest

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