Stanislaw Lem
Quotations


Art gives man a reminder that he is not just a consumer but a creator as well. It awakens in him the urge to struggle and perform great deeds; it fills him with the craving to pass on the Promethean fire to generations to come.

Behind every glorious facade there is always hidden something ugly.

Burn with that consuming fire of objectivity that forces a man to renew efforts that are doomed to failure.

I believe in no final solutions.

I do not like the way people use the more and more magnificent fruits of technology to their filthy deeds.

I don't resist progress, but I have a growing feeling that mankind uses it mostly for disgraceful purposes.

I just spontaneously and organically took to writing.

I never loved totalitarianism and all the ideas of making mankind happy always seemed crazy to me.

It has no meaning, what do you use to write, the only thing that is important is: what do you write. A machine to write a book instead of a writer is not invented yet, and probably will never be.

My pessimism (which, by the way, is far from absolute) originated with my despair in the lack of perfection to be found in human nature. I was attempting in my successive books to show the inevitable handicap of the human condition.

On the one hand, we have no choice but to trust in our technology. Without it we would never have set foot on the Moon. But sometimes we have to pay a high price for that trust.

People make filthy things with the freedom they regained.

Practically all SF is trash.

The demand for absolute purity of genres is becoming nowadays an anachronism in literature.

There is only one positive role of the Nobel prize--it creates some common way to understand a writer. I cannot say, that I like this situation, but that's the way it goes. The books are being born and then walk around the world, just as children do.

This casual, improvised, spontaneous way of writing is the general characteristic of all I do.

You believe by doubting and you doubt by believing; yet this state too is not the final one.

What if everything that exists is fragmentary, incomplete, aborted, events with ends but no beginnings with us constantly making categories, seeking out, and reconstructing, until we think we can see total love, betrayal and defeat, although in reality we are all no more than haphazard fractions. The mind, for its own self-preservation, finds and integrates scattered fragments. Using religion and philosophy as the cement, we perpetualy collect and assemble all the garbage comprised by statistics in order to make sense out of things, to make everything respond in one unified voice like a bell chiming to our glory. But it's only soup. The mathematical order of the universe is our answer to the pyramids of chaos.



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