Atlas Shrugged – A Companion Book (Part 5)

Once the character, John Galt mentioned in my previous post, is introduced to the reader, the author describes him numerous times as “a man untouched by pain or fear or guilt.”  This is the same description of those found in Gallery Seven of my book.  They have reached Maslow’s self-actualization, a level in which there are no further human needs or desires.  It is a level dominated by peak experiences in which pain, fear, and guilt no longer exist.  But getting to this highest level of human achievement takes a lifetime of striving requiring the passage from Gallery One to Gallery Six and finally, with the help of others, the crossing to Gallery Seven.

In addition, John Galt is the one character who is able to exist both in the everyday world as well as the spiritual world.  In other words, John Galt is able to live and work for years in the everyday world, the world that is collapsing, and the spiritual world – the world that he created for the others in Gallery Six, a world that is self-sustaining.  This spiritual world is a world of cardinal virtues, hard work, and self-determination.

As mentioned in my book, one of the hallmarks of happiness is the ability to exist in both the everyday world as well as the spiritual world.  Both worlds are needed.  Most people, including most of the characters in the book, exist in the real or everyday world.  In Atlas Shrugged, many individuals also exist in the spiritual world, the world of those found in Gallery Six.  However, it is John Galt, and at the end of the novel those in Gallery Six that cross the threshold to Gallery Seven, who are able to move in both dimensions.  It is the ability to move in both of these spheres that leads to happiness in this life.

More to come!

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