Philosophy

Loyalty As a Value

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Definition: a type of attachment to values that does not waver in the face of new information and new evaluations.

I take loyalty to be a devotion to someone or something – a ready willingness to work for its benefit, with a firm emphasis on “ready”.

Loyalty to a friend would mean giving the benefit of the doubt. Suppose you had a very close friend whose judgment, values, and philosophy you have found to be unwaveringly wise and upstanding. One day, you see a person getting angry with him and then getting violent. A loyal friend will not jump in and say, “What was the argument about? Were you right, or is he justified in breaking your nose?” He will readily defend his friend, without asking questions. This is an example of rational, un-blind loyalty. It is an act of volition, adherence to reality, commitment to what one knows to be right, commitment toward one’s own life and one’s own chosen values…

I think this is where loyalty comes in. When you are loyal to a person you are not swayed by the changing tides of opinion with regard to them. You will stick up for them in both word and deed, even when it may be disadvantageous to you to do so, because you know that the value of this person is greater and not to be sold out to the lesser achievement of safety from the displeasure of the mob. I think another important aspect of loyalty, ironically enough, is not to shrink from judgment. If you hear someone saying something damning but false about a friend and then someone asks you what you think, it’s disloyal for you to say, “Er, hmm, I dunno, it’s tough to say either way.” Instead you ought to say “No, that’s complete nonsense, it never happened, and I understand if you thought it was true but now that you know it’s a lie you should stop telling people this.” Do you run the risk of being wrong? Sure, but it’s better to take a stand and be wrong then never take one at all.

Loyalty towards someone or something means: “I will not sell out this enduring value (that something or someone) for any fleeting temptation that may appear advantageous in the moment.” Simple.

Aniket Warty
Adventure Capitalist. The creation of wealth is merely an extension of my innate freedom to produce.
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