Wednesday, August 16, 2006


A book like Atlas Shrugged is not meant to be blown through. This is a book that you take with you for the rest of your life. A book that comes with you everywhere. A book that you keep at the corner of your desk. A book that speaks when you speak, sometimes. I feel like speaking with people, I'll be able to then tell if they've ever read through it or not. Ayn Rand has an outstanding outlook on life, and it's one that I've already kept with me for a good portion of my life, and as I've started to have things fall a little bit more into place for me, and I've started to have my head level off, it's the philosophy I've already taken on. Atlas Shrugged has told me to keep on. This is a path that I'm not inventing. While I'd love to be a trailblazer, I also get a new sense of comfort knowing that I'm not alone in uncharted waters. Objectivism is something to be embraced through to the end. Thank goodness I've found it. Thank Nicole for setting me up with it.

Following are some key quotes that I've underlined in the book. Some may come across extremely obscure, being out of context, but just the way that they've been written might make you feel inspired. Some of them are full quotes, others are just three or four words used together. Regardless, these are all statements that have moved me. Enjoy.

"...handing the dime to the shadow that had no face."

"...the color of a fading masterpiece."

"...the blood vessels on a map."

"How can we compete with a man who's got a corner on God's natural resources?"

"She resented the small defeat of being tired."

"She did not want her feeling to be the thing one was supposed to owe an uncle or a grandfather."

"It has taken so much to build this city, it should have so much to offer."

"It was the smile of a man who is able to see, to know, and to create the glory of existence."

"If joy is the aim and the core of existence, she thought, and if that which has the power to give one joy is always guarded as one's deepest secret, then they had seen each other naked in that moment."

"She looked at him silently, as if a voice within her were saying: Not the things that are, but the things we'll make... We are not to be stopped, you and I..." *****

" 'Francisco, what's the most depraved type of human being?'
' The man without a purpose.'" ***

"...she did it because she felt, for some reason which she could not define, that the incident was a secret too precious to share."

" 'The things you were talking about. The lights and the flowers. Do they expect those things to make them romantic, not the other way around?'
'Darling, what do you mean?'
'There wasn't a person there who enjoyed it,' she said, her voice lifeless, 'or who thought or felt anything at all. They moved about, and they said the same dull things they say anywhere. I suppose they thought the lights would make it brilliant.' *

"He listened silently, looking at her for the first time with that glance of unmoving mockery which he reserved for others, a glance that seemed to see too much. She felt as if he heard, in her words, more than she knew she told him." **

"...every man, woman, child and abortion..."

"...the diamond band on the wrist of her naked arm gave her the most feminine of all aspects: the look of being chained."

" if sight could wipe out sound." ***

"...proud detachment..."

"...the oil derricks rose to the sky..." [note: imagery] **

"Cheyenne" **

" an arm of naked bones and nerves." *

"...the windows had turned gray with daylight."

"...all of them starting on a shoestring and moving mountains." **

" 'It's dust, lady. All dust and blood.'" *****

"'What is morality?' she asked.
'Judgement to distinguish right and wrong, vision to see the truth, courage to act upon it, dedication to that which is good, integrity to stand by the good at any price.'"

"...words had become sounds which transmitted nothing." *

"...the unlimited power of reason." *

"You can all stay home, take no risks and make no enemies." **

"'I hate it! I hate the doom you're all waiting for, the giving up...'"

"For the moment, with an unnatural clarity, with a brutal simplification that made it almost easy, his consciousness contained nothing but one thought: It must not stop me. The sentence hung alone with no past an no future." ****

"...conscious of nothing but pain, a screaming pain without context or limit... pain that stopped thought."

"He had not been guilty of evasion: he had not thought of it, because there was nothing to think."

"Thought is a weapon one uses in order to act. Thought is the tool by which one makes a choice. Thought sets oine's purpose and the way to reach it."

"There is an obscenity of evil whic contaminates the observer."

"He wished he had a friend who could be permitted to see him suffer, without pretense of protection, on whom he could lean for a moment, just to say, 'I'm very tired,' and find a moment's rest." **

"What is it we hear over the telephone - sound vibrations, isn't it? Well, her voice sounds as if it were turning into light vibrations..."

"Such tenants as it sheltered were half-bankrupt, existing, as it did, on the intertia of the momentum of the past."

"This is not the world I expected." ***

"They were alone in the silence of the dead city." **

"It was their daily duty to serve as audience for some public figure who made utterances about the puiblic good, in phrases carefully chosen to convey no meaning."

"...she could not distinguish the sky, the sun or the sounds of an enormous crowd, but perceived only a sensation of shock and light."

"For the moment, there was no future. They had earned the present." ***

"...the sight of an achievement was the greatest gift a human being could offer to others." *

"...a sustained impulse."

"Not to trust, but to know."

"Between sight and touch, between wish and fulfillment, between spirit and body." **

"She did not want to think, but the sound of thought went on." **

"Was this the surrender of a man's spirit to his body?"

"...he snapped the question at the unknown judges of his unwitnessed mood."

"The empty structures were vertical rubble."

"It was like having to perform an autopsy on the body of one's love."

"In this world, either you're virtuous or you enjoy yourself."

"'Yes, that is what I said: the hemophilia -- the slow leak -- the loss of blood that cannot be stopped.' "

"The measured tone of gravity went through every syllable of her voice..."

"...circling violence..."

"...devouring the unborn child of greatness."

"...the element of an emotion never to be admitted."

"'Thought is a primitive superstition. Reason is an irrational idea. The childish notion that we are able to think has been mankind's costliest error."

"The giants of intellect..."

"The men of blood and rust..."

"Of what account are praise and adulation from men who you don't respect?"

"'He's unreconstructed.'"

"She needed a span of time as a bridge between her days and his nights."

"'Why have we left it all to fools? It should have been ours.'" ***

"...but what came from it was only a desire to desire her, a wish to feel, not a feeling."

"'Most peple feel that they rise in their own eyes, if others want them.'"

"...the violent clarity of percetion."

"...he was past the need of words..."

" unknown destroyer."

"The moratorium on brains."

"...she felt that she had full control of her body and that she was not aware of her body's existence."

"...the capacity and the concept of doubt..."

"...a great clarity."

"...muscular habit..."

"...a walking classic." **

"...the return of motion and safety."

"Too shaken to sleep."

"No call for victims."

"The beauty of self-immolation."

"'We can never lose the things we live for. We may have to change their form at times, if we've made an error, but the purpose reamins the same and the forms are ours to make.'"

"But the cities has been left behind."

"...the state where disaster is no longer possible."

"...the spinal cord of a dead train."

"...her voice had no color..."

"The green circle glowed in space, announcing a clear track, inviting motion where there was nothing to move. Who was that philosopher,she thought, who preached that motion exists without any moving entities? This was his world, too."

"...a face that bore no mark of pain or fear or guilt."

"'Mine,' he answered, kicking the door in." [note: YEAH! That's action movie!]

" remnant of violence."

"...conscious of her hands."

"'There it is -- it's your earth, your kingdom, your kind of world."***

"...the unrhythmical abruptness of the involuntary."

"The emotional sum..."

" shelter the birth of a skyscraper." **

"...the night of closed eyelids."

"...her single, unchanging reality."

"...a glance like the visual equivalent of the words: What's your angle?"

"...restlessly demanding anything but this pause."

"...submerged hysteria..."

"They seemed to be waiting to be told what to think."

"...a voice like a machine gun spitting smiles."

"...slouching against the sky..."

"...a look of fear in the process of being accepted as permanent..."

"We are those who do not disconnect the values of their minds from the actions of their bodies, those who do not leave their values to empty dreams, but bring them into existence, those who give material form to thoughts." **

"...the thing to do is not get scared, but to learn."

"She had to learn to understand the things that destroyed her."***

"...flooded by the dead."

"He carried an automatic pistol in one pocket and a rabbit's foot in the other."

"...making one conscious, not of the gems, but of the living beat behind them."

"'I saw the world as he made it look, as if it matched him, as if he were its symbol.'"

"...past crying or feeling or moving."**

"...a monument of guilt."

"He had not known what the destruction of a person would be like."

"...threadbare phrases."

"'I swear -- by my life and my love of it -- that will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.'"

"If a naked bullet could feel in mid-flight, this is what it would feel, she thought; just the motion and the goal."

"...the spitting violence of their bullets the storm, it would not bring comfort to their bodies."

"...neither their God nor their guns..."

"'The desire not to be anything is the desire not to be.'" ****

"That is the payment I demand. Not many can afford it. I don't mean your enjoyment, I don't mean your emotion -- emotions be damned! -- I mean your understanding and the fact that your enjoyment was of the same nature as mine, that it came from the same source: from your intelligence, from the conscious judgement of a mind able to judge my work by the standard of the same values that went to write it -- I mean, not the fact that you felt, but that you felt what I wished you to feel, not the fact that you admire my work, but that you admire it for the things I wished to be admired." **********


Some of the chapter titles are even out of control. Check this.

1.1 - The Theme
1.2 - The Chain
1.3 - The Top and the Bottom
1.4 - The Immovable Movers
1.7 - The Exploiters and the Exploited
1.10 - Wyatt's Torch

2.1 - The Man Who Belonged On Earth
2.2 - The Aristocracy of Pull
2.3 - White Blackmail
2.4 - The Sanction of the Victim
2.7 - The Moratorium on Brains
2.10 - The Sign of the Dollar

3.1 - Atlantis
3.2 - The Utopia of Greed
3.4 - Anti-Greed
3.5 - Their Brothers' Keepers
3.8 - The Egoist
3.9 - The Generator
3.10 - In the Name of the Best Within Us

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