The Straw-Man series is meant to concisely and clearly present common straw-men used in arguments against a true Christian worldview and to properly dismantle them. A straw-man may be concocted purposefully for the purposes of deception, or assumed accidentally by virtue of a genuine misunderstanding, but the result is always the same: a distorted argument which overwhelmingly misses the point and therefore requires correction.
Primacy of Consciousness
The Straw-Man: "God is pure consciousness – a consciousness which is conscious of nothing but its own consciousness."
The Real- Man: "God is an existent who is conscious of Himself – of His own existence."
For whatever reason, Objectivists have become convinced that the existence of God necessarily entails the fallacy which they refer to as “The Primacy of Consciousness”, wherein consciousness exists apart from existence. Because God is conscious, and because He created all other existents, they conclude that before His creation, there was consciousness (God) without existence. This, indeed, would be a very irrational position for theists to hold – fortunately, they don’t.
Did you catch the card-trick in there? There’s just a tiny little difference between God being consciousness (the straw man) and God being an existent who is conscious (what theists actually believe). Rand holds that consciousness is conscious of something (or something which exists). “So,” the Objectivist may demand, “what was God conscious of?” Answer: Himself. Not ‘His own consciousness’ (another aspect to the Objectivist straw man), but His own existence. Surely, Objectivists would not deny that a conscious being is capable of being conscious of itself- of its own existence.
And that is all that theism teaches on the matter - that God exists and that before He created anything else, He was conscious of Himself. So, if Objectivists want to deny theism, they will have to do it on some other grounds than the straw man described above.