Nathaniel Branden Lecture Series

The Atlas Society is proud to offer the original Nathaniel Branden Institute  (NBI) lecture series for download.  The lectures, which began in 1960, were originally provided as recordings, and distributed around the country for those who could not attend a live NBI lecture. Entitled Basic Principles of Objectivism the lectures present Ayn Rand's philosophy as well as Nathaniel Branden's application of Objectivism to his own field, psychology.

Lecture #1 The Role of Philosophy

Lecture one discusses: What is philosophy? The historical role of reason and objectivism vs. subjectivism.

Lecture #2 What Is Reason?

Lecture two discusses the process of abstraction and concept-formation, the subconscious, reason and emotions.

Lecture #3 Logic and Mysticism

Lecture three discusses the validity of the senses,identity and causality: Logic vs. Mysticism.

Lecture #4 The Concept of God

Lecture four evolves around religion, from a psychological and philosophical perspective. Is the concept of God meaningful? Are the arguments for the existence of God logically defensible? Branden explores these questions and more in this historic series.

Lecture #5 Free Will

Lecture five titled Free Will discusses the meaning and nature of volition. The fallacy of psychological determinism and free will as the choice to think or not to think.

Lecture #6 Efficient Thinking

Lecture six is given by guest lecturer Barbara Branden and will discuss the nature of clear thinking, Pseudo thinking and the nature of definitions and common thinking errors.

Lecture #7 Self-Esteem

Lecture seven is on Self-Esteem. Why self-esteem is man’s deepest psychological need and the consequences of the failure to achieve self-esteem.

Lecture #8 The Psychology of Dependence

Lecture eight is on the Psychology of dependence and discusses the independent mind vs. the "socialized mind", social metaphysics and the revolt against the responsibility of a volitional consciousness.

Lecture #9 The Objectivist Ethics

Lecture nine is on The Objectivist Ethics. The foundation of the Objectivist ethics, man’s life as the standard of value. Dr. Branden discusses rationality as the foremost virtue and happiness as the moral goal of life.

Lecture #10 Reason and Virtue

Lecture ten is on “Reason and Virtue,” where Nathaniel Branden discusses independence, honesty, integrity, and productiveness and their relation to survival and mental health.

Lecture #11 Justice vs. Mercy

Lecture eleven is on Justice vs. Mercy. The nature of justice and the importance of passing moral judgments and the virtue of pride.

Lecture #12 The Evil of Self-Sacrifice

Lecture twelve titled “The Evil of Self-Sacrifice,” where Nathaniel Branden discusses the ethics of altruism and altruism as anti-man and anti-life.

Lecture #13 Government and the Individual

Lecture thirteen titled “Government and the Individual,” discusses the principles of a proper political system, individual rights and Freedom vs. compulsion.

Lecture #14 The Economics of a Free Society

Lecture 14 is on the Economics of a Free Society, the basic principles of exchange, division of labor and the the “pyramid of ability", the mechanism of a free markets profits and wealth.

Lecture #15 The Common Fallacies About Capitalism

Lecture 15 is on “Common Fallacies About Capitalism. Nathaniel Branden discusses the monopolies in Capitalism, depressions, labor unions and inherited wealth.

Lecture #16 The Psychology of Sex

Lecture 16 is a discussion on the psychology of sex and self-esteem and a person's sexual choices as the expression of his deepest values.

Lecture #17 Romanticism, Naturalism and the Novels of Ayn Rand, Part 1

Lecture seventeen will discuss naturalism and fatalism, the literary method of Ayn Rand and romanticism and free will.

Lecture #18 Romanticism, Naturalism and the Novels of Ayn Rand, Part 2

Lecture eighteen continues the discussion on naturalism and fatalism, the literary method of Ayn Rand and romanticism and free will.

Lecture #19 The Nature of Evil

Lecture nineteen discusses why evil is important, what makes the “victory” of evil possible and the sanction of the victim.

Lecture #20 The Benevolent Sense of Life

Lecture twenty discusses a benevolent vs. malevolent sense of life and why many humans repress and drive underground, not the worst within them, but the best.

We promote open Objectivism: the philosophy of reason, achievement, individualism, and freedom.