Ayn Rand: An Antichrist
Just to be clear, according to Mormon doctrine The Antichrist is Satan. An antichrist is anyone who actively teaches against Christ in an attempt to deceive believers. I have not read Ayn Rand’s books, nor anything written by her that I can recall, other than the snippets necessary to write this article. However, in recent weeks, I have heard a lot about her, and have even seen parts of old recordings of interviews with her. I believe I have learned enough about her to make this assertion; Ayn Rand was an antichrist.
One of the adjectives often associated with an antichrist is “cunning,” in that they tend to be skilled with logic and language – as Rand was – and use it to distort the truth to fit their views. The process of deceiving is most effective when it starts with indisputable facts. When it can also appeal to the natural desires of human nature it becomes very persuasive. In the case of Rand, she used the logic of capitalism, to promote the “virtue of selfishness.”
Rand used her vision of how capitalism should be as a lure to win over her listeners. She appealed to their base desires to win followers. She indoctrinated them with ideas in direct conflict with those taught by Christ, and ultimately asserted not only that God does not exist, but that believing that God exists is weakness.
Here are some of her core tenets and directly conflicting teachings from scripture:
Rand: “Very few in this world are worthy of love.”
Christ: “Love thy neighbor,” (Matt 19:19) and “love thy enemies”. (Matt 5:44)
Rand: “The evil of a robber does not lie in the fact that he pursues his own interests, but in what he regards as to his own interest; not in the fact that he pursues his values, but in what he chose to value”
A prophet: “If ye do not watch yourselves, and your thoughts, and your words, and your deeds, and observe the commandments of God…ye must perish.” (Mosiah 4:30)
Rand: “The reasons why man needs a moral code will tell you that the purpose of morality is to define man’s proper values and interests, that concern with his own interests is the essence of a moral existence, and that man must be the beneficiary of his own moral actions.”
Christ: “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal.” (Matt 6:19-20)
This is only a cursory survey; I’m sure I could come up with more but I really have no interest in reading her material. (If you think of any, please leave a comment.)
There is no doubt that Rand was well-educated and persuasive. Unfortunately, her arguments were inspired by the worst of human traits, and served primarily as a means to justify wickedness. She was not an ethical person, as was manifested most openly by her public affair with a younger man. Instead, she tried to redefine “ethical” so that it applied to her, but this was merely calling black white.
Not everything Rand said or wrote is a deception or wrong. Her logic is very good to a point. However, the conclusions she draws cannot be reconciled to the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Her goal was not to enlighten others. If you believe her philosophies will bring society to a better place, you are deceived. Lasting peace and happiness can only be obtained through principles which are in harmony with God’s laws. Rand’s teachings may bring power, wealth and self indulgence, but never true happiness. “Wickedness never was happiness.” (Alma 41:10)
Perhaps Rand was sick – with uncontrollable sociopathic tendencies. Perhaps she herself was deceived. Perhaps. Ultimately, that makes little difference now that she is gone. Her words are her legacy, and her words are in direct opposition to Jesus Christ and everything He stood for. Her words are those of an antichrist.
“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?” (Matt 7:15-16)