The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand is this week’s book. Some of you may be familiar with this book or its author. Those that know about this author and her philosophy may be surprised to hear that I LOVE this book. Now, for those of you wondering what I am talking about, let’s give you a little background.
Basically, this book is about an architect and his insistence to build buildings his way – a way based on how the land looks and reacts to the structure. Along the way he is thwarted by a myriad of people. This is a unjust oversimplification of a 700 page novel, so keep that in mind.
But what this book really does is start the process of Ayn Rand defining her philosophical theory which she calls Objectionalism. Again, I will try to oversimplify this theory by saying it is based on the idea of selfishness and that man should strive to do what he desires and not what society thinks. It looks down on altruism saying that to serve others you must glorify and need the underprivileged. It is based on rationalism and a rational mind.
For those of you who know a lot about objectionalism or even just watch a quick youtube video about it you may be wondering why this psychic loved this book so much. The theory is basically about how we should strive to love ourselves and not love everyone equally. You guys know I am all about love – so what is with this book?
Okay, so, first off, let me just say that, philosophy aside, this book is written beautifully. The description of the human condition in this book is better and more accurate than I have seen written anywhere else. Just the use of adjectives and verbs throughout the text is a true work of art.
Interestingly, I also believe that Rand portrays intuition and psychic insight better than I have ever seen written in any fictional text. The little subtle nudges that is the intuition speaking are seen throughout the writing, but particularly in the first half. This is especially interesting because Rand poo-pooed the supernatural and the mystical and believed in just the rational mind. I am not sure she would like me saying that her book was likely a combined effort from her own mystical experiences.
Now, how about her theory. There are parts of her theory that I actually really like, I think she gets so close to saying and believing what I believe, but then we just diverge in the final aspects. Her main character in this novel, Howard Roark, is an example of individualism. He strives for perfection in all his work and he will only accept his work as he created it. The belief in this book is that doing your work and doing it well is better and more virtuous than serving your fellow man.
Believe it or not, I kind of agree with her. I see our purpose on earth is to be the expression of the divine as we are here to manifest it. It is through this expression that we actually serve others, not through direct service. What do I mean here. If you have as your heart’s desire to be a musician – if you have always loved listening and playing music – then it would be more beneficial to society for you to be a musician than to spend your time cooking food for individuals in a homeless shelter. Your true express of the divine would be that of a musician, not a chef, and by expressing yourself in that way you actually serve more of humanity by vibrating at a higher octave. Interesting concept, right.
The problem becomes that most of us are not brave enough to go after and pursue our hearts desires. We are taught by society to be afraid – to be afraid of not having a place to live or not having food to eat. We are taught that musicians don’t make any money so it is better to go to business school and be an accountant. We are taught that barely anyone that actually wants to be a musician succeeds. And we listen.
We listen to what our parents tell us. To what society tells us. To what the shows we watch tell us. And we believe them. We factor their beliefs into our framework for how society works instead of figuring it out for ourselves.
Then we seek their approval. Instead of looking to ourselves to be proud of what we are doing and checking in with our inner light – we ask our friend or our neighbor – we look to see how many likes we have on instagram or Facebook – it isn’t until we have those 10,000 followers – then what we do will have meaning and purpose – then what we do will be legitimate.
That is all a fallacy. We should do the work of our hearts because it is our purpose and our right to be the divine in manifestation. We should look to what we believe and what is in our hearts, not what others believe. And, most importantly, we should seek approval only from ourselves, not from outside ourselves.
So, yes, this psychic and metaphysician can jive with parts of Rand’s theory on Objectionalism. Maybe not the whole theory which discredits the supernatural, but bits and pieces of it. I see what she was getting at, and although I do not fully accept everything she writes and believes, I do not think she would want me to – she would want me to look inside myself and see what my true beliefs are and not seek approval from her or anyone else.
Have you read or heard of The Fountainhead or Ayn Rand??? What are your thoughts??