Two possibilities exist: either we are alone in the Universe or we are not. Both are equally terrifying.
I’m sure the universe is full of intelligent life. It’s just been too intelligent to come here.
A faith that cannot survive collision with the truth is not worth many regrets.
But please remember: this is only a work of fiction. The truth, as always, will be far stranger.
After their encounter on the approach to Jupiter, there would aways be a secret bond between them—not of love, but of tenderness, which is often more enduring.
He did not know that the Old One was his father, for such a relationship was utterly beyond his understanding, but as he looked at the emaciated body he felt a dim disquiet that was the ancestor of sadness.
One of the greatest tragedies in mankind’s entire history may be that morality was hijacked by religion.
The rash assertion that “God made man in His own image” is ticking like a time bomb at the foundation of many faiths.
Science can destroy religion by ignoring it as well as by disproving its tenets. No one ever demonstrated, so far as I am aware, the nonexistence of Zeus or Thor, but they have few followers now.
My favourite definition of an intellectual: ‘Someone who has been educated beyond his/her intelli
He found it both sad and fascinating that only through an artificial universe of video images could she establish contact with the real world.
The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible.
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
How inappropriate to call this planet “Earth,” when it is clearly “Ocean.
Magic’s just science that we don’t understand yet.
When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong.
Meteorites don’t fall on the Earth. They fall on the Sun and the Earth gets in the way.” – John W. Campbell
…once science had declared a thing possible, there was no escape from its eventual realization…
This is only a work of fiction , The Truth as always will be far stranger
What was more, they had taken the first step toward genuine friendship. They had exchanged vulnerabilities.
Didn’t somebody once say ‘Politics is the art of the possible’?” “Quite true—which is why only second-rate minds go into it. Genius likes to challenge the impossible.
[T]hese leaders must not believe they are actually being watched, for their behavior in no way reflects the possible existence of a set of values or ethical laws that supersedes their own dominion.
Now, before you make a movie, you have to have a script, and before you have a script, you have to have a story; though some avant-garde directors have tried to dispense with the latter item, you’ll find their work only at art theaters.
It has yet to be proven that intelligence has any survival value.
Let us say that you might have become a telepathic cancer, a malignant mentality which in its inevitable dissolution would have poisoned other and greater minds.
The person one loves never really exists, but is a projection focused through the lens of the mind onto whatever screen it fits with least distortion.
I am an optimist. Anyone interested in the future has to be otherwise he would simply shoot himself.
Feeling extremely foolish, the acting representative of Homo sapiens watched his First Contact stride away across the Raman plain, totally indifferent to his presence.
Slowly, Jimmy held up his outstretched hands. Men had been arguing for two hundred years about this gesture; would every creature, everywhere in the universe, interpret this as “See–no weapons”? But no one could think of anything better.
The Chairman glared across three hundred and eighty thousand kilometers of space at Conrad Taylor, who reluctantly subsided, like a volcano biding its time.
The limits of the possible can only be defined by going beyond them into the impossible
Three million years! The infinitely crowded panorama of written history, with its empires and its kings, its triumphs and its tragedies, covered barely one thousandth of this appalling span of time.
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.””Two possibilities exist: Either we are alone in the Universe or we are not. Both are equally terrifying.
It is hard to draw any line between compassion and love.
There is a special sadness in achievement, in the knowledge that a long-desired goal has been attained at last, and that life must now be shaped towards new ends.
Those wanderers must have looked on Earth, circling safely in the narrow zone between fire and ice, and must have guessed that it was the favourite of the Sun’s children.
Oh God, there were so many stars you could have used. What was the need to give these people to the fire, that the symbol of their passing might shine above Bethlehem?
Once, I believed that space couldhave no power over faith, just as I believed the heavens declared the glory of God’shandwork. Now I have seen that handwork, and my faith is sorely troubled.
Just like the cosmonauts and their pee plants, all we have is each other.
Few artists thrive in solitude and nothing is more stimulating than the conflict of minds with similar interests.
And so Discovery drove on toward Saturn, as often as not pulsating with the cool music of the harpsichord, the frozen thoughts of a brain that had been dust for twice a hundred years.
Jan had always been a good pianist, and now he was the finest in the world.
But the characteristic that is truly special about our species…[is] our ability to model our world and understand both it and where we fit into its overall scheme….
Now times had changed, and the inherited wisdom of the past had become folly.
As his body became more and more defenseless, so his means of offense became steadily more frightful.
Long ago the signalling had become no more than a meaningless ritual, now maintained by an animal which had forgotten to learn and a robot which had never known to forget.
It must be wonderful to be seventeen, and to know everything.
He had sometimes wondered if the real reason why men sought danger was that only thus could they find the companionship and solidarity which they unconsciously craved.
The confrontation lasted about five minutes; then the display died out as quickly as it had begun, and everyone drank his fill of the muddy water. Honor had been satisfied; each group had staked its claim to its own territory.
Western man had relearned-what the rest of the world had never forgotten-that there was nothing sinful in leisure as long as it did not degenerate into mere sloth.
Yes, it made sense, and was so absurdly simple that it would take a genius to think of it. And, perhaps, someone who did not expect to do it himself.
Men knew better than they realized, when they placed the abode of the gods beyond the reach of gravity.
After the struggle for sheer existence, they had no energy left for a civilization.
Michael O’Toole had no difficulty recognizing which questions in life should be answered by physics and which ones by religion.
…mysticism –perhaps the main aberration of the human mind.
In accordance with the terms of the Clarke-Asimov treaty, the second-bestscience writer dedicates this book to the second-best science-fictionwriter.[dedication to Isaac Asimov from Arthur C. Clarke in his book Report on Planet Three]
If man can live in Manhattan, he can live anywhere.
Excessive interest in pathological behavior was itself pathological
Many of the fundamental physical constants-which as far as one could see, God could have given any value He liked-are in fact very precised adjusted, or fine-tuned, to produce the only kind of Universe that makes our existence possible.
Never attribute to malevolence what is merely due to incompetence
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
The limits of the possible can only be defined by going beyond them into the impossible.
The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to go beyond them into the impossible.
Sometimes I think we’re alone in the universe, and sometimes I think we’re not. In either case the idea is quite staggering.
Perhaps, as some wit remarked, the best proof that there is Intelligent Life in Outer Space is the fact it hasn’t come here. Well, it can’t hide forever – one day we will overhear it.
Reading computer manuals without the hardware is as frustrating as reading sex manuals without the software.
How inappropriate to call this planet Earth when it is quite clearly Ocean.
Human judges can show mercy. But against the laws of nature, there is no appeal.
If an elderly but distinguished scientist says that something is possible, he is almost certainly right; but if he says that it is impossible, he is very probably wrong.
This is the first age that’s ever paid much attention to the future, which is a little ironic since we may not have one.
The greatest tragedy in mankind’s entire history may be the hijacking of morality by religion.
I don’t believe in God but I’m very interested in her.
New ideas pass through three periods: 1) It can’t be done. 2) It probably can be done, but it’s not worth doing. 3) I knew it was a good idea all along!
I have a fantasy where Ted Turner is elected President but refuses because he doesn’t want to give up power.
It may be that our role on this planet is not to worship God – but to create him.
I don’t pretend we have all the answers. But the questions are certainly worth thinking about.
It is not easy to see how the more extreme forms of nationalism can long survive when men have seen the Earth in its true perspective as a single small globe against the stars.
The best measure of a man’s honesty isn’t his income tax return. It’s the zero adjust on his bathroom scale.
Our lifetime may be the last that will be lived out in a technological society.