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axiom
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Atlas Shrugged
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axiom
Used In
Atlas Shrugged
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  • Money rests on the axiom that every man is the owner of his mind and his effort.
  • He concentrated on the relief of the mirror’s cooling touch, wondering how one went about forcing one’s mind into blankness, particularly after a lifetime lived on the axiom that the constant, clearest, most ruthless function of his rational faculty was his foremost duty.
  • Whether you know the shape of a pebble or the structure of a solar system, the axioms remain the same: that it exists and that you know it.
  • His means to establish the truth of his answers is logic, and logic rests on the axiom that existence exists.
  • My morality, the morality of reason, is contained in a single axiom: existence exists-and in a single choice: to live.
  • An axiom is a proposition that defeats its opponents by the fact that they have to accept it and use it in the process of any attempt to deny it.
  • It was as if he were a single whole, grasped by her first glance at him, like some irreducible absolute, like an axiom not to be explained any further, as if she knew everything about him by direct perception, and what awaited her now was only the process of identifying her knowledge.
  • We, the men of the mind, are now on strike against you in the name of a single axiom, which is the root of our moral code, just as the root of yours is the wish to escape it: the axiom that existence exists.
  • Existence exists-and the act of grasping that statement implies two corollary axioms: that something exists which one perceives and that one exists possessing consciousness, consciousness being the faculty of perceiving that which exists.
  • We, the men of the mind, are now on strike against you in the name of a single axiom, which is the root of our moral code, just as the root of yours is the wish to escape it: the axiom that existence exists.
  • An axiom is a statement that identifies the base of knowledge and of any further statement pertaining to that knowledge, a statement necessarily contained in all others, whether any particular speaker chooses to identify it or not.
  • Whatever the degree of your knowledge, these two-existence and consciousness-are axioms you cannot escape, these two are the irreducible primaries implied in any action you undertake, in any part of your knowledge and in its sum, from the first ray of light you perceive at the start of your life to the widest erudition you might acquire at its end.
  • They want to cheat the axiom of existence and consciousness, they want their consciousness to be an instrument not of perceiving but of creating existence, and existence to be not the object but the subject of their consciousness-they want to be that God they created in their image and likeness, who creates a universe out of a void by means of an arbitrary whim.
  • There is no knowledge, they teach, there’s only faith: your belief that you exist is an act of faith, no more valid than another’s faith in his right to kill you; the axioms of science are an act of faith, no more valid than a mystic’s faith in revelations; the belief that electric light can be produced by a generator is an act of faith, no more valid than the belief that it can be produced by a rabbit’s foot kissed under a stepladder on the first of the moon-truth is whatever people…
  • Let the caveman who does not choose to accept the axiom of identity, try to present his theory without using the concept of identity or any concept derived from it-let the anthropoid who does not choose to accept the existence of nouns, try to devise a language without nouns, adjectives or verbs-let the witchdoctor who does not choose to accept the validity of sensory perception, try to prove it without using the data he obtained by sensory perception —let the head-hunter who does not…
  • …to prove it by means of unconsciousness-he is asking you to step into a void outside of existence and consciousness to give him proof of both-he is asking you to become a zero gaining knowledge about a zero, "When he declares that an axiom is a matter of arbitrary choice and he doesn’t choose to accept the axiom that he exists, he blanks out the fact that he has accepted it by uttering that sentence, that the only way to reject it is to shut one’s mouth, expound no theories and die.
  • …asking you to prove it by means of unconsciousness-he is asking you to step into a void outside of existence and consciousness to give him proof of both-he is asking you to become a zero gaining knowledge about a zero, "When he declares that an axiom is a matter of arbitrary choice and he doesn’t choose to accept the axiom that he exists, he blanks out the fact that he has accepted it by uttering that sentence, that the only way to reject it is to shut one’s mouth, expound no theories…

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  • We prove with axioms. We do not prove axioms, so we have to agree on a place to start.
  • It is an axiom of governance that power, once acquired, is seldom freely relinquished.

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