Atlas Shrugged Quotes

Quotes tagged as "atlas-shrugged" Showing 1-30 of 335
John Rogers
“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs."

[Kung Fu Monkey -- Ephemera, blog post, March 19, 2009]”
John Rogers

Ayn Rand
“Never think of pain or danger or enemies a moment longer than is necessary to fight them.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“Do you know the hallmark of a second rater? It's resentment of another man's achievement. Those touchy mediocrities who sit trembling lest someone's work prove greater than their own - they have no inkling of the loneliness that comes when you reach the top. The loneliness for an equal - for a mind to respect and an achievement to admire. They bare their teeth at you from out of their rat holes,thinking that you take pleasure in letting your brilliance dim them - while you'd give a year of my life to see a flicker of talent anywhere among them. They envy achievement, and their dream of greatness is a world where all men have become their acknowledged inferiors. They don't know that that dream is the infallible proof of mediocrity, because that sort of world is what the man of achievement would not be able to bear. They have no way of knowing what he feels when surrounded by inferiors - hatred? no, not hatred, but boredom - the terrible, hopeless, draining, paralyzing boredom. Of what account are praise and adulation from men whom you don't respect? Have you ever felt the longing for someone you could admire? For something, not to look down at, but up to?"
"I've felt it all my life," she said.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“Have you ever felt the longing for someone you could admire? For something, not to look down at, but up to?”
Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand
“Reason is not automatic. Those who deny it cannot be conquered by it. Do not count on them. Leave them alone.”
Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand
“I do not think that tragedy is our natural fate and I do not live in chronic dread of disaster. It is no happiness, but suffering that I consider unnatural. It is not success, but calamity that I regard as the abnormal exception in Human Life.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“You have been called selfish for the courage of acting on your own judgement and bearing sole responsibility for your own life. You have been called arrogant for your independent mind. You have been called cruel for your unyielding integrity. You have been calle anti social for the vision that made you venture upon undiscovered roads.”
Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand
“I like to think of fire held in a man's hand. Fire, a dangerous force, tamed at his fingertips. I often wonder about the hours when a man sits alone, watching the smoke of a cigarette, thinking. I wonder what great things have come from such hours. When a man thinks, there is a spot of fire alive in his mind--and it is proper that he should have the burning point of a cigarette as his one expression.”
Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand
“We are on strike against martyrdom—and against the moral code that demands it. We are on strike against those who believe that one man must exist for the sake of another. We are on strike against the morality of cannibals, be it practiced in body or in spirit. We will not deal with men on any terms but ours—and our terms are a moral code which holds that man is an end in himself and not the means to any end of others.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“Thinking is man’s only basic virtue, from which all the others proceed. And his basic vice, the source of all his evils, is that nameless act which all of you practice, but struggle never to admit: the act of blanking out, the willful suspension of one’s consciousness, the refusal to think - not blindness, but the refusal to see; not ignorance, but the refusal to know. It is the act of unfocusing your mind and inducing an inner fog to escape the responsibility of judgment - on the unstated premise that a thing will not exist if only you refuse to identify it, that A will not be A so long as you do not pronounce the verdict ‘It is.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“Independence is the recognition of the fact that yours is the responsibility of judgment and nothing can help you escape it—that no substitute can do your thinking—that the vilest form of self-abasement and self-destruction is the subordination of your mind to the mind of another, the acceptance of an authority over your brain, the acceptance of his assertions as facts, his say-so as truth, his edicts as middle-man between your consciousness and your existence.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“I refuse to apologize for my ability—I refuse to apologize for my success—I refuse to apologize for my money.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“Your fear of death is not a love for life. . .”
Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand
“To fear to face an issue to believe that the worst is true.

--Atlas Shrugged”
Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand
“Man has been called a rational being, but rationality is a matter of choice — and the alternative his nature offers him is: rational being or suicidal animal. Man has to be man — by choice; he has to hold his life as a value — by choice; he has to learn to sustain it — by choice; he has to discover the values it requires and practice his virtues — by choice.
A code of values accepted by choice is a code of morality.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“Logic is the art of non-contradictory identification. A contradiction cannot exist. No concept man forms is valid unless he integrates it without contradiction into the total sum of his knowledge. To arrive at a contradiction is to confess an error in one’s thinking; to maintain a contradiction is to abdicate one’s mind and to evict oneself from the realm of reality”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“You don’t have to see through the eyes of others, hold onto yours, stand on your own judgment, you know that what is, is—say it aloud, like the holiest of prayers, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“I am the man who loves his life. I am the man who does not sacrifice his love or his values.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“She felt a bored indifference toward the immediate world around her...She took it as a regrettable accident, to be borne patiently for a while, that she happened to be imprisoned among people who were dull.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“He was seeing a long line of men stretched through the centuries from Plato onward, whose heir and final product was an incompetent little professor with the appearance of a gigolo and the soul of a thug.”
Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)

Ayn Rand
“Whenever anyone accuses some person of being ‘unfeeling,’ he means that that person is just. He means that that person has no causeless emotions and will not grant him a feeling which he does not deserve. He means that .‘to feel’ is to go against reason, against moral values, against reality.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“‎But he still thought it self-evident that one had to do what was right; he had never learned how people could want to do otherwise; he had learned only that they did.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“The only proper purpose of a government is to protect man's rights, which means: to protect him from physical violence. The only proper functions of a government are: the police, to protect you from criminals; the army, to protect you from foreign invaders; and the courts, to protect your property and contracts from breach or fraud by others, to settle disputes by rational rules, according to objective law. (John Galt)”
Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand
“She survived it. She was able to survive it, because she did not believe in suffering. She faced with astonished indignation the ugly fact of feeling pain, and refused to let it matter. Suffering was a senseless accident, it was not part of life as she saw it.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“She thought of the world’s code that worshipped white lies as an act of mercy—she felt a stab of revulsion against that code..”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“Do you know what she did today?" He leaned confidentially across the table, pointing at the dishes in the sink. "She went to the market and left all the breakfast dishes there and said she'd do them later. I know what she wanted. She expected me to do them. Well, I'll fool her. I'll leave them just where they are.”
Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand
“...she had always looked for sparks of competence, like a diamond prospector in an unpromising wasteland.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“She had forgotten every problem, person and event behind her; they had always been clouded in her sight, to be hurried past, to be brushed aside, never final, never quite real. This was reality, she thought, this sense of clear outlines, of purpose, of lightness, of hope. This was the way she had expected to live—she had wanted to spend no hour and take no action that would mean less than this.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“It is not proper for man’s life to be a circle, she thought, or a string of circles dropping off like zeros behind him—man’s life must be a straight line of motion from goal to farther goal, each leading to the next and to a single growing sum.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand
“She heard the words; she understood the meaning; she was unable to make it real—to grant the respect of anger, concern, opposition to a nightmare piece of insanity that rested on nothing but people’s willingness to pretend to believe that it was sane.”
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

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