Question: Since all living things die after one lifespan (humans included), why doesn't Objectivism recognize reproduction as the primary virtue?

Answer: Since all humans live as individual beings fundamentally, and do not continue their own existence when they reproduce, reproduction is simply not a straightforward means of prolonging one's life. I have children and let me tell you, love them as I might, they are not me. Indeed, my own father is dead, and I am not him living on.
Ayn Rand defined life as a process of self-sustaining and self-generated action. A living organism is a single, unified entity that lives. Although some biology textbooks include the ability to reproduce in their putative definitions of life, this is plainly an error: Mules, eunuchs, and seedless grape-vines are alive, yet none can reproduce. Crystals and computer viruses plainly reproduce, but are not alive. Q.E.D.
There are many good reasons why one might benefit from having children. (If I didn't think so, I wouldn't have children myself.) But I don't think seeking a kind of immortality is one of these.


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