The world is ours, whenever we choose to claim it, by virtue and grace of the fact that ours is the Morality of Life.
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.
... there's nothing of any importance in life except how well you do your work. Nothing. Only that. Whatever else you are, will come from that. It's the only measure of human value. All the codes of ethics they'll try to ram down your throat are just so much paper money put out by swindlers to fleece people of their virtues. The code of competence is the only system of morality that's on a gold standard.
So long as men desire to live together, no man may initiate the use of physical force against others.... When a man attempts to deal with me by force, I answer him by force. It is only as retaliation that force may be used and only against the man who starts its use. No, I do not share his evil or sink to his concept of morality I merely grant him his choice, destruction, the only destruction he had the right to choose his own.
You who prattle that morality is social and that man would need no morality on a desert island it is on a desert island that he would need it most. Let him try to claim, when there are no victims to pay for it, that a rock is a house, that sand is clothing, that food will drop into his mouth without cause or effort, that he will collect a harvest tomorrow by devouring his stock seed today and reality will wipe him out, as he deserves reality will show him that life is a value to be bought and that thinking is the only coin noble enough to buy it.
Force and mind are opposites; morality ends where a gun begins.
God help us, ma'am Do you see what we saw We saw that we'd been given a law to live by, a moral law, they called it, which punished those who observed it for observing it. The more you tried to live up to it, the more you suffered the more you cheated it, the bigger reward you got. Your honesty was like a tool left at the mercy of the next man's dishonesty. The honest ones paid, the dishonest collected. The honest lost, the dishonest won. How long could men stay good under this sort of a law of goodness.
For centuries, the battle of morality was fought between those who claimed that your life belongs to God and those who claimed that it belongs to your neighbours between those who preached that the good is self-sacrifice for the sake of ghosts in heaven and those who preached that the good is self-sacrifice for the sake of incompetents on earth. And no one came to say that your life belongs to you and that the good is to live it.
A code of values accepted by choice is a code of morality
There can be no such thing, in law or in morality, as actions to an individual, but permitted to a mob.
Learn to distinguish the difference between errors of knowledge and breaches of morality
Love is the expression of one's values, the greatest reward you can earn for the moral qualities you have achieved in your character and person, the emotional price paid by one man for the joy he receives from the virtues of another.
There are two kinds of teachers of the Morality of Death the mystics of spirit and the mystics of muscle ... those who believe in consciousness without existence and those who believe in existence without consciousness.... No matter how loudly they posture in the roles of irreconcilable antagonists, their moral codes are alike, and so are their aims in matter the enslavement of mans body, in spirit the destruction of his mind ... make no mistake about the character of the mystics. To undercut your consciousness has always been their only purpose throughout the ages and power, the power to rule you by force, has always been their only lust.... But it cannot be done to you without your consent. If you permit it to be done, you deserve it.
A rational process is a moral process. You may make an error at any step of it, with nothing to protect you but your own severity, or you may try to cheat, to fake the evidence and evade the effort of the quest but if devotion to the truth is the hallmark of morality, then there is no greater, nobler, more heroic form of devotion than the act of a man who assumes the responsibility of thinking.
I want you to observe, that those who cry the loudest about their disillusionment, about the failure of virtue, the futility of reason, the impotence of logic are those who have achieved the full, exact, logical result of the ideas they preached, so mercilessly logical that they dare not identify it. In a world that proclaims the non-existence of the mind, the moral righteousness of rule by brute force, the penalizing of the competent in favour of the incompetent, the sacrifice of the best to the worst in such a world, the best have to turn against society and have to become it's deadliest enemies.
If any civilization is to survive, it is the morality of altruism that men have to reject.
You'll come back, because yours is an error of knowledge, not a moral failure, not an act of surrender to evil, but only the last act of being victim to your own virtue. We'll wait for you and when you come back, you will have discovered that there need never be any conflict among your desires, nor so tragic a clash of values as the one you've borne so well.
The purpose of morality is to teach you, not to suffer and die, but to enjoy yourself and live.
My morality, the morality of reason, is contained in a single axiom existence exists and in a single choice to live. The rest proceeds from these. To live, man must hold three things as the supreme and ruling values of his life Reason Purpose Self-esteem. Reason, as his only tool of knowledge Purpose, as his choice of the happiness which that tool must proceed to achieve Self-esteem, as his inviolate certainty that his mind is competent to think and his person is worth of happiness, which means is worthy of living. These three values imply and require all of man's virtues, and all his virtues pertain to the relation of existence and consciousness rationality, independence, integrity, honesty, justice, productiveness, pride.
More Ayn Rand Quotations (Based on Topics)
Man - Mind - Life - Money & Wealth - Morality - World - Reality - Love - Good & Evil - Value - Honesty & Integrity - Success - Vice & Virtue - Thought & Thinking - Purposes - Sense & Perception - Happiness - Efforts - Reasoning - View All Ayn Rand Quotations
More Ayn Rand Quotations (By Book Titles)
- Atlas Shrugged
- The Fountainhead
Niccolo Machiavelli - Robert Louis Stevenson - Paul Davies - Karen Armstrong - Joseph Addison - Henry Lawson - Henry Drummond - George Axelrod - Ella Wheeler Wilcox - Anthony Hope