September 17, 2007

Ayn Rand, Austrian Students, and the Vatican

Did you know that Ayn Rand was Buddhist? (Or that Alan Greenspan was an Objectivist? Yeesh.)

Rand’s idea of “the virtue of selfishness,” Ms. Moore said, “is a harsh phrase for the Buddhist idea that you have to take care of yourself.”

Ms. Moore is "Darla Moore, vice president of the private investment firm Rainwater Inc." People keep buying Ayn Rand's books and, according to this article, she keeps winning the hearts and minds of CEO's and corporate climbers to this day. How wonderful.

We've broken the news here before that Germans love Buddhism, but in case you need further proof, the Dalai Lama is going to hang out with German chancellor Angela Merkel, China is angry about same, and Austrian students visit Dharamsala. This last item isn't really news but is intended to bolster the meaningless and fabricated claim at the beginning of this paragraph.

Would you rather claim climb Everest from the Nepal side or the Chinese Tibet side? There are arguments for each, it seems. A group of Thais are climbing the Big E to show their support for their king, country, and Buddhism.

Here's an essay on becoming a vegetarian that has nothing to do with climate-change worries. But in case you're wondering how things are going on that front, His Holiness the Pope Benedict XVI has some thoughts on this. The Vatican is often a couple years late on important issues, of course, like Terri Schiavo and Galileo. Interestingly the Vatican seems to have won an argument with China over the Beijing bishopric. (Sorry about that word. "Diocese" didn't sound right.) How many other governments can say that? Also, the Vatican is working to offset its carbon emissions -- another thing few governments can claim.

- Philip Ryan, Webmaster

P.S. - The sad state of bookstores in New York City -- even the monster chains can't make a go of it.

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rod / theworsthorse's picture

that's right -- the Scientology/Buddhism "connection" was most famously brought up by Tom Cruise while doing publicity for his movie The Last Samurai. He insisted that Buddhism is the "grandfather" of Scientology.

a clever attempt to bite Buddhism's cred, but i think everyone knew he was full of it.

Konchog's picture

Oh brother. That Rand nonsense reminds me of a catering job I was on back in Washington, DC, many years ago. I had the peculiar fortune to work the opening of the new Scientology building. Against my wishes, my suopervisor blurted out that I was a Buddhist monk.

"Oh," said one of the faithful brightly, "L. Ron Hubbard's writings have so much in common with Buddhism."

Being on the job, I could only respond, "Is that right?" and wander off. But what else could you say, really?