„We are only seeking Man. We have no need of other worlds. We need mirrors. We don't know what to do with other worlds. A single world, our own, suffices us; but we can't accept it for what it is. We are searching for an ideal image of our own world: we go in quest of a planet, of a civilisation superior to our own but developed on the basis of a prototype of our primeval past. At the same time, there is something inside us which we don't like to face up to, from which we try to protect ourselves, but which nevertheless remains, since we don't leave Earth in a state of primal innocence. We arrive here as we are in reality, and when the page is turned and that reality is revealed to us — that part of our reality which we would prefer to pass over in silence — then we don't like it any more.“

—  Stanisław Lem, book Solaris

Solaris (1961), Ch. 6: "The Little Apocrypha", p. 72
Solaris (1961)

Last update May 22, 2020. History
Stanisław Lem photo
Stanisław Lem74
Polish science fiction author 1921 - 2006

Related quotes

Stanisław Lem photo

„We arrive here as we are in reality, and when the page is turned and that reality is revealed to us — that part of our reality which we would prefer to pass over in silence — then we don't like it any more.“

—  Stanisław Lem, book Solaris

Source: Solaris (1961), Ch. 6: "The Little Apocrypha", p. 72
Context: We are only seeking Man. We have no need of other worlds. We need mirrors. We don't know what to do with other worlds. A single world, our own, suffices us; but we can't accept it for what it is. We are seaching for an ideal image of our own world: we go in quest of a planet, of a civilisation superior to our own but developed on the basis of a prototype of our primeval past. At the same time, there is something inside us which we don't like to face up to, from which we try to protect ourselves, but which nevertheless remains, since we don't leave Earth in a state of primal innocence. We arrive here as we are in reality, and when the page is turned and that reality is revealed to us — that part of our reality which we would prefer to pass over in silence — then we don't like it any more.

Stanisław Lem photo
Stanisław Lem photo

„We are only seeking Man. We have no need of other worlds. We need mirrors. We don't know what to do with other worlds.“

—  Stanisław Lem, book Solaris

Source: Solaris (1961), Ch. 6: "The Little Apocrypha", p. 72
Context: We are only seeking Man. We have no need of other worlds. We need mirrors. We don't know what to do with other worlds. A single world, our own, suffices us; but we can't accept it for what it is. We are seaching for an ideal image of our own world: we go in quest of a planet, of a civilisation superior to our own but developed on the basis of a prototype of our primeval past. At the same time, there is something inside us which we don't like to face up to, from which we try to protect ourselves, but which nevertheless remains, since we don't leave Earth in a state of primal innocence. We arrive here as we are in reality, and when the page is turned and that reality is revealed to us — that part of our reality which we would prefer to pass over in silence — then we don't like it any more.

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John Lancaster Spalding photo

„The world is a mirror into which we look, and see our own image.“

—  John Lancaster Spalding Catholic bishop 1840 - 1916

Source: Aphorisms and Reflections (1901), p. 31

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„These last two albums mix up the personal and the political so that you don't know which one you're talking to. That's a kind of magic trick, and realizing that of course all the problems that we find in the exterior world are just manifestations of what we, you know, what we hold inside of us, in our interior worlds.“

—  Bono Irish rock musician, singer of U2 1960

On Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience
Context: These last two albums mix up the personal and the political so that you don't know which one you're talking to. That's a kind of magic trick, and realizing that of course all the problems that we find in the exterior world are just manifestations of what we, you know, what we hold inside of us, in our interior worlds. The biggest fucker, the biggest asshole, the biggest, the most sexist we can be, the most selfish, mean, cunning, all those characters you are going to see them in the mirror. And that is where the job of transformation has to start first. Is that not what experience tells us?

Kate Bornstein photo

„If we don't show ourselves the same amount of compassion we show others, we'll eventually come to resent the compassion we have for others. I think there's little enough compassion in the world right now, so we need to grow our own to compensate for that.“

—  Kate Bornstein American author, playwright, performance artist, and gender theorist 1948

My New Gender Workbook: A Step-by-step Guide to Achieving World Peace Through Gender Anarchy and Sex Positivity (2013), p. 6

Ben Carson photo

„It does not matter where we come from or what we look like. If we recognize our abilities, are willing to learn and to use what we know in helping others, we will always have a place in the world.“

—  Ben Carson 17th and current United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development; American neurosurgeon 1951

Source: Think Big: Unleashing Your Potential for Excellence

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Calvin Coolidge photo

„Let us cast off our hatreds. Let us candidly accept our treaties and our natural obligations of peace. We know and everyone knows that these old systems, antagonisms, and reliance on force have failed. If the world has made any progress, it has been the result of the development of other ideals. If we are to maintain and perfect our own civilization, if we are to be of any benefit to the rest of mankind, we must turn aside from the thoughts of destruction and cultivate the thoughts of construction“

—  Calvin Coolidge American politician, 30th president of the United States (in office from 1923 to 1929) 1872 - 1933

1920s, Toleration and Liberalism (1925)
Context: It is for these reasons that it seems clear that the results of the war will be lost and we shall only be entering a period of preparation for another conflict unless we can demobilize the racial antagonisms, fears, hatreds, and suspicions, and create an attitude of toleration in the public mind of the peoples of the earth. If our country is to have any position of leadership, I trust it may be in that direction, and I believe that the place where it should begin is at home. Let us cast off our hatreds. Let us candidly accept our treaties and our natural obligations of peace. We know and everyone knows that these old systems, antagonisms, and reliance on force have failed. If the world has made any progress, it has been the result of the development of other ideals. If we are to maintain and perfect our own civilization, if we are to be of any benefit to the rest of mankind, we must turn aside from the thoughts of destruction and cultivate the thoughts of construction. We can not place our main reliance upon material forces. We must reaffirm and reinforce our ancient faith in truth and justice, in charitableness and tolerance. We must make our supreme commitment to the everlasting spiritual forces of life. We must mobilize the conscience of mankind.

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