The great creators - the thinkers, the artists, the scientists, the inventors - stood alone against the men of their time. Every great new thought was opposed. Every great new invention was denounced. The first motor was considered foolish. The airplane was considered impossible... But the men of unborrowed vision went ahead. They fought, they suffered and they paid. But they won.

-Ayn Rand
Ayn Rand

In western civilization, the period ruled by mysticism is known as the 'Dark Ages' and the 'Middle Ages'. I will assume that you know the nature of that period and the state of human existence in those ages. The Renaissance broke the rules of the mystics. "Renaissance" means the "rebirth". Few people today will care to remind you that it was a rebirth of reason - of man's mind.

Ayn Rand
I like to receive money for my work. But I can pass that up this time. I like to have people know my work is done by me. But I can pass that up. I like to have tenants made happy by my work. But that doesn't matter too much. The only thing that matters, my goal, my reward, my beginning, my end is the work itself. My work done my way. Peter, there's nothing in the world that you can offer me, except this. Offer me this and you can have anything I've got to give. My work done my way. A private, personal, selfish, egotistical motivation. That's the only way I function. That's all I am.
Ayn Rand

The worst evil that you can do, psychologically, is to laugh at yourself. That means spitting in your own face.

Ayn Rand
For the coming of that day shall I fight, I and my sons and my chosen friends. For the freedom of Man. For his rights. For his life. For his honor.
Ayn Rand

Any refusal to recognize reality, for any reason whatever, has disastrous consequences. There are no evil thoughts except one: the refusal to think. Don't ignore your own desires.... Don't sacrifice them. Examine their cause. There is a limit to how much you should have to bear.

Ayn Rand
When personal judgment is inoperative (or forbidden), men's first concern is not how to choose, but how to justify their choice
Ayn Rand

She knew that she could not have reached this white serenity except as the sum of all the colors, of all the violence she had known.

Ayn Rand
Love is an expression and assertion of self-esteem, a response to one's own values in the person of another. One gains a profoundly personal, selfish joy from the mere existence of the person one loves. It is one's own personal, selfish happiness that one seeks, earns, and derives from love....
Ayn Rand

It's strange. There's your life. You begin it, feeling that it's something so precious and rare, so beautiful that it's like a sacred treasure. Now it's over, and it doesn't make any difference to anyone, and it isn't that they are indifferent, it's just that they don't know, they don't know what it means, that treasure of mine, and there's something about it that they should understand. I don't understand it myself, but there's something that should be understood by all of us. Only what is it? What?

Ayn Rand
The ' pleasure' of being drunk is obviously the pleasure of escaping from the responsibility of Consciousness.