I challenge Ayn Rand’s Objectivism. My main challenge revolves around Objectivism’s treatment of emotions. Rand says your emotional mechanism is like a computer you have to program. I say it is not. I say your emotional mechanism is prewired and you cannot overwrite this programming.
This is about the extent of what I say. I don’t believe in God. I don’t believe in astrology. Intuition plays a role in life and emotions are hardwired. That’s about all I say. I could dive into Jungian psychology, my own child development work, trauma therapies, etc., etc., but I can’t even get past this issue of emotional programming with Objectivists–so why bother? They cannot understand the argument. I get hysterically and condescendingly accused of “mysticism.”
I had an epiphany about this. Their accusations against me of “mysticism” are not unlike the religious accusations against women of “witchcraft.” Make no mistake about it: it was centuries worth of terror aimed at women. See The 17 Signs That You’d Qualify as a Witch in 1692. If you were financially independent, had several female friends, practiced alternative medicine, had an affair, or broke any Biblical rule you could be accused of witchcraft–and sentenced to death. Gee. So much for the idea that Christ redeemed anyone. While Christians command us to think of Jesus’s birth every Christmas and his death every Easter, no one was with these women who were sent to be burned at the stake–their crucifixion. If I wore a guillotine or a burning stake around my neck, in the same way they wear a cross to remember Christ’s totally unfair death over tiny rules, Christians no doubt would tsk tsk me and tell me to “get over it.” And yet they make an entire religion around it.
There is a haunting realization in witchcraft trials. It is that men truly don’t understand female intuition and fear it. It is as if we women are a like a dog that can hear high frequency sounds and men can’t–and therefore deem us as witches. Women are really good at identifying life cycles or sizing up men who might be predators. It’s that intuition I sometimes write about and which Carl Jung could tell you a LOT about. Clearly: I am a total mystic.
And I realized this connection between the Objectivist hysterical accusation against me as being a “mystic” and the Christian accusation against women as being witches. It’s very similar. And it’s just as terrifying. While the Objectivist won’t burn me at the stake, they do arguably worse: in the name of reason, they bury me, smear me, insult me, and tell me the most feminine look of all is when I am chained. It’s more subtle, more insidious, and thus arguably worse.
Rand says man is born with no reliable instincts or intuition. It’s not true. We are born with lots of reliable instincts. But to the Objectivist mind, it is “science” to reject instinct. If you bring up any other psychology, by definition, you are a mystic. They can’t even understand your argument. As most are men, they need this intuition about life far less than women. And as they don’t understand it, they just attack, attack, attack. This is why this is truly horrifying and haunting.