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Axiology: "The branch of philosophy dealing with the nature of value and the types of value, as in morals, aesthetics, religion, and metaphysics." Webster's New World Dictionary, 2nd Edition

People are different. They do not look alike. They do not all sound the same. And they all think differently. Axiology is the science that studies how people think. Specifically, Axiologists study how people determine the value of different things. This is how individuals compare things and how those value assignments either represent or distort reality.

To value is to set priorities. It is to choose one thing over another. It is to think about things in relation to each other and decide that one is better than the other. It is to decide what is "good". All persons assign higher value to some things and lower value to others. People assign these valuations in a consistent pattern that is unique to them. This valuation process is actually one's habit of thinking. It involves filtering, processing, storing, and analyzing data. It includes thinking about objects, discerning the different aspects of things, making judgments, and choosing. Our unique pattern of thinking and assigning value is called our Value Structure.

People often confuse value with values. Values are specific items that people stand for, believe in, or deem important. To value is to think, to assign meaning and richness of properties to reality. A Value Structure is the thinking map a person uses to reach conclusions about things. Value is thinking that values are important objects of our thinking. People value to arrive at their values.

One way to describe the difference between value and values is by using the field of Color Vision. We can compare value to one's ability to see different colors. The science of Color Vision studies one's ability to see and differentiate colors as Axiology studies one's ability to distinguish conceptually between different things. We can compare values to different colors or the linking of one color (Red) as more favorable, significant, acceptable, or valuable than another (Pink). To say, "Bill can value colors" means that Bill can see and distinguish between or among colors, he has good color vision. To say, "Bill values red more than blue” means that Bill prefers red to blue. To say, "Bill can value" means that Bill can see clearly and think about the different aspects of different things without getting those aspects confused with each other. To say, "Bill values people more than money” means that Bill likes people more than money and wants money to work toward the benefit of people.
Value = Color Vision = Ability to Choose
Values = Favorite Colors = Choices

Formal Axiology

Formal Axiology is a specific branch of the science of Axiology. The late Dr. Robert S. Hartman developed this science between 1930 and 1973. It is a unique social science because it is the only social science that has a one to one relationship between a field of mathematics (transfinite set calculus) and its dimensions.
More About Formal Axiology
More About Dr. Robert S. Hartman
The Dimensions of Value

Dr. Hartman identified three dimensions of reality, which he called the Dimensions of Value. We value everything in one of these three ways or in a combination of these dimensions. The Dimensions of Value are Systemic, Extrinsic, and Intrinsic.
More About The Dimensions of Value
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