Blog: Ayn Rand

Christine Alfery

Posted on April 20 2021

Blog: Ayn Rand

Featured image: Wild Rose

In the 60’s when I was in college, the author, Ayn Rand, was all the rage. She came to the University of Wisconsin on a book tour and talked about objective reasoning. I went to her lecture. She was quite abstract and I understood very little of what she said. One thing I did understand was that in order to be able to think like she did, I would have to give up my belief in God.

I wanted nothing to do with her. Back then, one either believed in the total theory of something, say Marxism, or you didn't. One could not go halfway. Belief needed to be absolute. The same sort of thinking followed through when writing exams. Having an opinion of ones own was unique and wasn’t encouraged. The learner was encouraged to accept what they learned in class and repeat it in the exam, for example, Ayn Rand's philosophy of objective reasoning.

Today, I still believe in God and Christ as His Son, but I also believe that Ayn Rand's philosophy of objective reason is quite solid. And, perhaps, the fairest when it comes to understanding the below phrase.

“All men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
U.S. Declaration of Independence.

I bring this up because I believe it is not healthy to drink the kool-aid of "group think." Oh sure, group thinking for governing America is important, but not the sort of group thinking that infringes on the unalienable rights of the individual. Today, I believe in many parts of Ayn Rand's philosophy, as I believe in many parts of the Bible. It isn’t a question of one or the other. Rather, it is ok to believe in both. I am not a “one size fits all” individual, and neither is anyone else.

This morning I read this quote from Ayn Rand's textbook "Americanism," that I would like to share with you:
“Only on the basis of individual right can any good – private or public – be defined and achieved. Only when each man is free to exist for his own sake, - neither sacrificing others to himself nor being sacrificed to other – only then is every man free to work for the greatest good he can achieve for himself by his own choice and by his own effort. And the sum total of such individual effort is the only kind of general, social good possible.”

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