The stab of a coldly rebellious anger brought him back to the full context of the moment.
Rearden stood looking after him, knowing-without context and with absolute certainty-that he would give his life for the power not to have committed the action he had committed.
He did not hear his own words, because he kept hearing a single sentence in his mind, without context except the feeling that it was the only thing that mattered to him in the world: "If I should lose my life, to what better purpose could I give it?"
Suddenly, without context or warning, Robert Stadler whirled to face him.
The look on his face, the serene intensity of his eyes and of his mind made it real to her, now, in this moment, in this moment’s full context, in this city.
The knowledge that she was seeing her own reflection in the side mirror of a florist’s window, came an instant too late: she had felt the enchantment of the full context to which that image and city belonged.
Then she felt a stab of desolate loneliness, much wider a loneliness than the span of an empty streetand a stab of anger at herself, at the preposterous contrast between her appearance and the context of this night and age.
In mounting panic, the watchers lost their sense of context and language-and their three voices blended into a progression of indiscriminate shrieks: "We want you to take over! . We want you to rule! . We order you to give orders! . We demand that you dictate! . We order you to save us! . We order you to think! ." They heard no answer but the beating of the heart on which their own lives depended.
She stopped; this time, she did not gasp; the sight confronting her could not be greeted by anything except a moment of total inner stillness: on the wall, behind a row of machinery, she saw a’ picture cut out of a newspaper-a picture of her, in slacks and shirt, standing by the side of the engine at the opening of the John Galt Line, her head lifted, her smile holding the context, the meaning and the sunlight of that day.
And then, for one instant, I did what I had never done before, what most men wreck their lives on doing-I saw that moment out of context, I saw the world as he made it look, as if it matched him, as if he were its symbol-I saw a world of achievement, of unenslaved energy, of unobstructed drive through purposeful years to the enjoyment of one’s reward-I saw, as I stood in the rain in a crowd of vagrants, what my years would have brought me, if that world had existed, and I felt a
Then I saw the scene in full context again and in all of its actual meaning-I saw what price he was paying for his brilliant ability, what torture he was enduring in silent bewilderment, struggling to understand what I had understood-I saw that the world he suggested, did not exist and was yet to be made, I saw him again for what he was, the symbol of my battle, the unrewarded hero whom I was to avenge and to release-and then . then I accepted what I had learned about you and him.
There can be no conflict among these three . what am I doubting? . what can keep us apart, here, where only he and I belong? . Then, recapturing the context of the present, she had walked steadily on, with the sense of the same unbroken loyalty, but the sound of different words: You have forbidden me to look for you, you may damn me, you may choose to discard me . but by the right of the fact that I am alive, I must know that you are . I must see you this once . not to stop, not
but it is not a city, it is a city’s reflection-the day when he grasps that he is not a passive recipient of the sensations of any given moment, that his senses do not provide him with automatic knowledge in separate snatches independent of context, but only with the material of knowledge, which his mind must learn to integrate-the day when he grasps that his senses cannot deceive him, that physical objects cannot act without causes, that his organs of perception are physical and have
day when he grasps that his senses cannot deceive him, that physical objects cannot act without causes, that his organs of perception are physical and have no volition, no power to invent or to distort, that the evidence they give him is an absolute, but his mind must learn to understand it, his mind must discover the nature, the causes, the full context of his sensory material, his mind must identify the things that he perceives-that is the day of his birth as a thinker and scientist.
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She said she was quoted out of context and that anyone who read her full speech would know it.