Sunday, 19 February 2017

Ayn Rand on Rational Religious People

Ayn Rand believed that it is possible for religious people to be rational and inclined towards Objectivism. She was against forbidding religion. She held that it is better to leave people the right to be wrong in their own way.

In Ayn Rand Answers: The Best of Her Rand is asked the question: “If religion is instrumental in spreading altruism, can we fight altruism in America without fighting religion?” Here's her answer:

“In America, religion is relatively non-mystical. Religious teachers here are predominantly good, healthy materialists. They follow common sense. They would not stand in our way. The majority of religious people in this country do not accept on faith the idea of jumping into a cannibal's pot and giving away their last shirt to the backward people of the world. Many religious leaders preach this today, because of their own leftist politics; it's not inherent in being religious. There are many historical and philosophical connections between altruism and religion, but the function of religion in this country is not altruism. You would not find too much opposition to Objectivism among religious Americans. There are rational religious people. In fact, I was pleased and astonished to discover that some religious people support Objectivism. If you want to be a full Objectivist, you cannot reconcile that with religion; but that doesn't mean religious people cannot be individualists and fight for freedom. They can, and this country is the best proof of it.”

(Source: Ayn Rand Answers: The Best of Her Q&A: Chapter: “Religious Conservatives”) 

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