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rational
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Atlas Shrugged
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rational -- as in: rational behavior
Used In
Atlas Shrugged
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  • They cannot be reached by a rational argument.
  • She felt, at the same time, a growing respect for the adversary, for a science that was so clean, so strict, so luminously rational.
  • At times, she almost doubted her own rationality or the existence of any rationality anywhere; but this was a doubt which she did not permit to anyone.
  • And that you should have become what you are-that does not belong in a rational universe.
  • At times, she almost doubted her own rationality or the existence of any rationality anywhere; but this was a doubt which she did not permit to anyone.
  • If one’s actions are honest, one does not need the predated confidence of others, only their rational perception.
  • The same brilliant vision of man as a rational being.
  • In the clean, rational world of the underground tunnels, nothing was of so urgent an importance as the task of finding the man who made the motor.
  • The more certain you feel of your rational conclusions, the more certain you are to be wrong.
  • If you have not yet heard it, my dear old-fashioned friends, it has now been proved that the rational is the insane.
  • It was a net of connections, more intricate, more crucial than all of their wires and circuits: the rational connections made by that human mind which had fashioned any one part of them for the first time.
  • I will not help you to preserve an appearance of rationality by entering a debate in which a gun is the final argument.
  • "But this is a matter of the spirit," said Lawson; his voice had a tone, not of rational respect, but of superstitious awe.
  • The electric light came on and brought her back to a rational world.
  • It is not your obedience that we seek to win, but your rational conviction.
  • This country was the only country in history born, not of chance and blind tribal warfare, but as a rational product of man’s mind.
  • 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.
  • It was as if the life he had been about to renounce were given back to him by the two essentials he needed: by his food and by the presence of a rational being.
  • With the single-tracked rationality of a somnambulist,, she whirled to find her handbag, as if it were the only object in existence, she seized it, she whirled to the door and ran.
  • So we came to set aside one month a year to spend in this valley-to rest, to live in a rational world, to bring our real work out of hiding, to trade our achievements-here, where achievements meant payment, not expropriation.
  • Bill Brent knew nothing about epistemology; but he knew that man must live by his own rational perception of reality, that he cannot act against it or escape it or find a substitute for it-and that there is no other way for him to live.
  • It does take an exceptional mind and a still more exceptional integrity to remain untouched by the brain-destroying influences of the world’s doctrines, the accumulated evil of centuries-to remain human, since the human is the rational.
  • None-except the obligation I owe to myself, to material objects and to all of existence: rationality.
  • Both sides agreed that no rational morality is possible, that there is no right or wrong in reason-that in reason there’s no reason to be moral.
  • AH that which is proper to the life of a rational being is the good; all that which destroys it is the evil.
  • A rational process is a moral process.
  • To the extent to which a man is rational, life is the premise directing his actions.
  • The moral is the rational, and reason accepts no commandments.
  • Reality demands of man that he act for his own rational interest; your gun demands of him that he act against it.
  • Reality threatens man with death if he does not act on his rational judgment; you threaten him with death if he does.
  • Their myth declares that he ate the fruit of the tree of knowledge-he acquired a mind and became a rational being.
  • For a man of moral stature, whose desires are born of rational values, sacrifice is the surrender of the right to the wrong, of the good to the evil.
  • By making moral judgments impossible, it has made you incapable of rational judgment.
  • You, who are half-rational, half-coward, have been playing a con game with reality, but the victim you have conned is yourself.
  • If life on earth is his purpose, he has a right to live as a rational being: nature forbids him the irrational.
  • But the man who produces an idea in any field of rational endeavor-the man who discovers new knowledge-is the permanent benefactor of humanity.
  • By the rules and terms of my code, one owes a rational statement to those whom it does concern and who’re making an effort to know.
  • Then this country will once more become a sanctuary for a vanishing species: the rational being.
  • Every man will stand or fall, live or die by his rational judgment.
  • Fight for the essence of that which is man: for his sovereign rational mind.
  • She was a girl in her late twenties, whose quietly harmonious, impenetrable face had a quality matching the best designed office equipment; she was one of his most ruthlessly competent employees; her manner of performing her duties suggested the kind of rational cleanliness that would consider any element of emotion, while at work, as an unpardonable immorality.
  • When I disagree with a rational man, I let reality be our final arbiter; if I am right, he will learn; if I am wrong, I will; one of us will win, but both will profit.
  • Your frozen trains, the gangs of raiders, the deserters, they’re men who’ve never heard of us, and they’re not part of our strike, they are acting on their own-it’s the natural response of whatever rationality is still left in them-it’s the same kind of protest as ours.
  • Having dealt with the clean reality of metals, technology, production all his life, he had acquired the conviction that one had to concern oneself with the rational, not the insane-that one had to seek that which was right, because the right answer always won-that the senseless, the wrong, the monstrously unjust could not work, could not succeed, could do nothing but defeat itself.
  • Happiness is possible only to a rational man, the man who desires nothing but rational goals, seeks nothing but rational values and finds his joy in nothing but rational actions.
  • Happiness is possible only to a rational man, the man who desires nothing but rational goals, seeks nothing but rational values and finds his joy in nothing but rational actions.
  • Happiness is possible only to a rational man, the man who desires nothing but rational goals, seeks nothing but rational values and finds his joy in nothing but rational actions.
  • Happiness is possible only to a rational man, the man who desires nothing but rational goals, seeks nothing but rational values and finds his joy in nothing but rational actions.
  • Whether your failure is just or not, whether your wishes are rational or not, whether your misfortune is undeserved or the result of your vices, it is misfortune that gives you a right to rewards.
  • If, in the chaos of the motives that have made you listen to the radio tonight, there was an honest, rational desire to learn what is wrong with the world, you are the man whom I wished to address.
  • In that world, you’ll be able to rise in the morning with the spirit you had known in your childhood: that spirit of eagerness, adventure and certainty which comes from dealing with a rational universe.
  • Moral perfection is an unbreached rationality-not the degree of your intelligence, but the full and relentless use of your mind, not the extent of your knowledge, but the acceptance of reason as an absolute.
  • 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.
  • The conductor waited for a polite half-minute and turned to go, but stopped to volunteer an explanation, as if some dim, rational habit told him that any attempt to explain made any unadmitted terror easier to bear.
  • Whether it’s a symphony or a coal mine, all work is an act of creating and comes from the same source: from an inviolate capacity to see through one’s own eyes-which means: the capacity to perform a rational identification —which means: the capacity to sew, to connect and to make what had not been seen, connected and made before.
  • If you choose to help a man who suffers, do it only on the ground of his virtues, of his fight to recover, of his rational record, or of the fact that he suffers unjustly; then your action is still a trade, and his virtue is the payment for your help.
  • the distant reaches of his childhood, when his own understanding of reality clashed with the assertions of others, with their arbitrary orders and contradictory demands, he gave in to so craven a fear of dependence that he renounced his rational faculty.
  • But when you live in a rational society, where men are free to trade, you receive an incalculable bonus: the material value of your work is determined not only by your effort, but by the effort of the best productive minds who exist in the world around you.
  • I don’t want to be an Economic Dictator, not even long enough to issue that order for people to be free-which any rational human being would throw back in my face, because he’d know that his rights are not to be held, given or received by your permission or mine.
  • She said, as if she were naming her thoughts for the benefit of the rational being who was not present, but whose presence she had to assume, since no other could be addressed, "That night …. those headlines …. that glory …. it was not you at all …. it was Dagny."
  • She felt suddenly certain that it came from something deeper than his fear of bureaucratic reprisal, that the reprisal was the only identification of it which he would permit himself to know, a reassuring identification which had a semblance of rationality and hid his true motive.
  • 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.
  • Just as there are no contradictions in my values and no conflicts among my desires-so there are no victims and no conflicts of interest among rational men, men who do not desire the unearned and do not view one another with a cannibal’s lust, men who neither make sacrifices nor accept them.
  • Act as a rational being and aim at becoming a rallying point for all those who are starved for a voice of integrity-act on your rational values, whether alone in the midst of your enemies, or with a few of your chosen friends, or as the founder of a modest community on the frontier of mankind’s rebirth.
  • Act as a rational being and aim at becoming a rallying point for all those who are starved for a voice of integrity-act on your rational values, whether alone in the midst of your enemies, or with a few of your chosen friends, or as the founder of a modest community on the frontier of mankind’s rebirth.
  • Your code declares that the rational man must sacrifice himself to the irrational, the independent man to parasites, the honest man to the dishonest, the man of justice to the unjust, the productive man to thieving loafers, the man of integrity to compromising knaves, the man of self-esteem to sniveling neurotics.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • When you listen to a mystic’s harangue on the impotence of the human mind and begin to doubt your consciousness, not his, when you permit your precariously semi-rational state to be shaken by any assertion and decide it is safer to trust his superior certainty and knowledge, the joke is on both of you: your sanction is the only source of certainty he has.
  • Men are free not to choose man’s survival as the standard of their morals and their laws, but not free to escape from the fact that the alternative is a cannibal society, which exists for a while by devouring its best and collapses like a cancerous body, when the healthy have been eaten by the diseased, when the rational have been consumed by the irrational.
  • He had never loved his mills as he did in that moment, for-seeing them by an act of his own vision, cleared of all but his own code of values, in a luminous reality that held no contradictions-he was seeing the reason of his love: the mills were an achievement of his mind, devoted to his enjoyment of existence, erected in a rational world to deal with rational men.
  • He had never loved his mills as he did in that moment, for-seeing them by an act of his own vision, cleared of all but his own code of values, in a luminous reality that held no contradictions-he was seeing the reason of his love: the mills were an achievement of his mind, devoted to his enjoyment of existence, erected in a rational world to deal with rational men.
  • …he said calmly, very simply-and the only note of a personal bond between them was that tone of sincerity which comes with a direct, unqualifiedly rational statement and implies the same honesty of mind in the listener-"You know, I think that the only real moral crime that one man can commit against another is the attempt to create, by his words or actions, an impression of the contradictory, the impossible, the irrational, and thus shake the concept of rationality in his victim."
  • Intellectual hoodlums who pose as professors, shrug away the thinkers of the past by declaring that their social theories were based on the impractical assumption that man was a rational being-but since men are not rational, they declare, there ought to be established a system that will make it possible for them to exist while being irrational, which means: while defying reality.
  • Intellectual hoodlums who pose as professors, shrug away the thinkers of the past by declaring that their social theories were based on the impractical assumption that man was a rational being-but since men are not rational, they declare, there ought to be established a system that will make it possible for them to exist while being irrational, which means: while defying reality.
  • You still retain a sense-not as firm as a memory, but diffused like the pain of hopeless longing-that somewhere in the starting years of your childhood, before you had learned to submit, to absorb the terror of unreason and to doubt the value of your mind, you had known a radiant state of existence, you had known the independence of a rational consciousness facing an open universe.
  • Would that have been a future which Robert Stadler would have considered rational? I want you to observe, Miss Taggart, that those who cry the loudest about their disillusionment, about the failure of virtue, the futility of reason, the impotence of logicare those who have achieved the full, exact, logical result of the ideas they preached, so mercilessly logical that they dare not identify it.
  • No matter what unintelligible causes he ascribes to his incommunicable feelings, whoever rejects reality rejects existence-and the feelings that move him from then on are hatred for all the values of man’s life, and lust for all the evils that destroy it, A mystic relishes the spectacle of suffering, of poverty, subservience and terror; these give him a feeling of triumph, a proof of the defeat of rational reality.
  • To the struggling remnants of rational honesty in the twisted, bewildered minds of your children, you declare that you can offer no rational argument to support the ideas that created this country, that there is no rational justification for freedom, for property, for justice, for rights, that they rest on a mystical insight and can be accepted only on faith, that in reason and logic the enemy is right, but faith is superior to reason.
  • To the struggling remnants of rational honesty in the twisted, bewildered minds of your children, you declare that you can offer no rational argument to support the ideas that created this country, that there is no rational justification for freedom, for property, for justice, for rights, that they rest on a mystical insight and can be accepted only on faith, that in reason and logic the enemy is right, but faith is superior to reason.
  • To the struggling remnants of rational honesty in the twisted, bewildered minds of your children, you declare that you can offer no rational argument to support the ideas that created this country, that there is no rational justification for freedom, for property, for justice, for rights, that they rest on a mystical insight and can be accepted only on faith, that in reason and logic the enemy is right, but faith is superior to reason.
  • We required that you leave us free to function-free to think and to work as we choose-free to take our own risks and to bear our own lossesfree to earn our own profits and to make our own fortunes-free to gamble on your rationality, to submit our products to your judgment for the purpose of a voluntary trade, to rely on the objective value of our work and on your mind’s ability to see it-free to count on your intelligence and honesty, and to deal with nothing but your mind.
  • …to gain a value by deceiving the mind of others is an act of raising your victims to a position higher than reality, where you become a pawn of their blindness, a slave of their non-thinking and their evasions, while their intelligence, their rationality, their perceptiveness become the enemies you have to dread and flee-that you do not care to live as a dependent, least of all a dependent on the stupidity of others, or as a fool whose source of values is the fools he succeeds in…
  • You declare to your children that it is rational to loot, to torture, to enslave, to expropriate, to murder, but that they must resist the temptations of logic and stick to the discipline of remaining irrationalthat skyscrapers, factories, radios, airplanes were the products of faith and mystic intuition, while famines, concentration camps and firing squads are the products of a reasonable manner of existence-that the industrial revolution was the revolt of the men of faith against…
  • Happiness was the responsibility you dreaded, it required the kind of rational discipline you did not value yourself enough to assume-and the anxious staleness of your days is the monument to your evasion of the knowledge that there is no moral substitute for happiness, that there is no more despicable coward than, the man who deserted the battle for his joy, fearing to assert his right to existence, lacking the courage and the loyalty to life of a bird or a flower reaching for the…
  • …willing to sell their intelligence into cynical servitude to force: the contemptible breed of those mystics of science who profess a devotion to some sort of ’pure knowledge’ the purity consisting of their claim that such knowledge has no practical purpose on this earth-who reserve their logic for inanimate matter, but believe that the subject of dealing with men requires and deserves no rationality, who scorn money and sell their souls in exchange for a laboratory supplied by loot.
  • Rationality is the recognition of the fact that existence exists, that nothing can alter the truth and nothing can take precedence over that act of perceiving it, which is thinking-that the mind is one’s only judge of values and one’s only guide of action-that reason is an absolute that permits no compromise-that a concession to the irrational invalidates one’s consciousness and turns it from the task of perceiving to the task of faking reality-that the alleged short-cut to knowledge,…
  • …numbed indifference of her mind: Jim had always managed to switch the weight of his failures upon the strongest plants around him and to survive by destroying them to pay for his errors, as he had done with Dan Conway, as he had done with the industries of Colorado; but this did not have even the rationality of a looter-this pouncing upon the drained carcass of a weaker, a half bankrupt competitor for a moment’s delay, with nothing but a cracking bone between the pouncer and the abyss.
  • …cannot fake the character of men as you cannot fake the character of nature, that you must judge all men as conscientiously as you judge inanimate objects, with the same respect for truth, with the same incorruptible vision, by as pure and as rational a process of identification-that every man must be judged for what he is and treated accordingly, that just as you do not pay a higher price for a rusty chunk of scrap than for a piece of shining metal, so you do not value a rotter above…
  • …is a being of self-made soul-that to live requires a sense of self-value, but man, who has no automatic values, has no automatic sense of self-esteem and must earn it by shaping his soul in the image of his moral ideal, in the image of Man, the rational being he is born able to create, but must create by choice-that the first precondition of self-esteem is that radiant selfishness of soul which desires the best in all things, in values of matter and spirit, a soul that seeks above all…
  • "Miss Taggart," said a politely rational, faintly anxious voice-and jerking her head up, she saw the courteous figure of a waiter, "the assistant manager of the Taggart Terminal is on the telephone, requesting permission to speak to you at once.
  • "Through all the ages," he said, "the mind has been regarded as evil, and every form of insult: from heretic to materialist to exploiterevery form of iniquity: from exile to disfranchisement to expropriation-every form of torture: from sneers to rack to firing squadhave been brought down upon those who assumed the responsibility of looking at the world through the eyes of a living consciousness and performing the crucial act of a rational connection.
  • Instead, he said calmly, very simply-and the only note of a personal bond between them was that tone of sincerity which comes with a direct, unqualifiedly rational statement and implies the same honesty of mind in the listener-"You know, I think that the only real moral crime that one man can commit against another is the attempt to create, by his words or actions, an impression of the contradictory, the impossible, the irrational, and thus shake the concept of rationality in his…
  • Rationality twenty-four hours a day, with no loophole, no rest, no escape? …. Don’t look at me, God damn you!

  • There are no more uses of "rational" in the book.


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  • It’s hard to think rationally when I’m this upset.
  • Let’s try to ignore how upset we are for a moment and think about this rationally.

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