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Friday, October 30, 2020

A Perfect Man is an Impossibility

Ayn Rand preached that contradictions do not exist, but she based her philosophy on the notion of the prefect man being the fountainhead of all progress. A perfect man is a contradiction in terms—as Eliezer Berkovits notes in his essay, “God in History”: “Why ask for continuous miracles to rectify what goes wrong in the world? Would it not be simpler to ask for the creation of a perfect man, who would be so endowed by nature as to be incapable of committing any evil? The answer, of course, is even simpler than the question is naive. A perfect man is, in this sense, a contradiction in terms; it is an impossibility. A man incapable of doing wrong would not be human. The imperfection of human nature is inseparable from its most significant asset: Its potential for goodness, its capacity for responsible decision and action.” Berkovits is making a good point. Unless a man has the capacity to be wrong, he cannot have the potential to be right; a man who is so prefect that he never makes any mistakes, cannot do anything right, which means that he won’t be perfect—thus the concept of perfect man is a contradiction.

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