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Scheherazade in Blue Jeans
freelance alchemist
This quote has been haunting me all week. 
6th-May-2011 02:55 pm
From Terry Pratchett's Hogfather:

Death: Humans need fantasy to *be* human. To be the place where the falling angel meets the rising ape.
Susan: With tooth fairies? Hogfathers?
Death: Yes. As practice, you have to start out learning to believe the little lies.
Susan: So we can believe the big ones?
Death: Yes. Justice, mercy, duty. That sort of thing.
Susan: They're not the same at all.
Death: You think so? Then take the universe and grind it down to the finest powder, and sieve it through the finest sieve, and then show me one atom of justice, one molecule of mercy. And yet, you try to act as if there is some ideal order in the world. As if there is some, some rightness in the universe, by which it may be judged.
Susan: But people have got to believe that, or what's the point?
Death: You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?
6th-May-2011 06:49 pm (UTC)
Me too.
6th-May-2011 06:53 pm (UTC)
I like this one, particularly the last line.
6th-May-2011 06:54 pm (UTC)
When I'm being a bit more serious about my beliefs than the usual "I'm a lapsed agnostic"[1], I sometimes say that I'm a Pratchett humanist. One could do a lot worse as a set of guiding principles.

[1] "I don't know and I haven't been wondering about it enough lately." :-)
6th-May-2011 07:03 pm (UTC)

Always love that quote. ^_^
6th-May-2011 07:15 pm (UTC)
"We need to believe the little lies so we may believe the big ones"
That whole exchange is my favorite part of the book.
6th-May-2011 07:19 pm (UTC)
That man always has an amazing way with words. Nobody can take apart the world and show it how it really is better than he, in my experience.
6th-May-2011 07:25 pm (UTC)
Weirdly, I just completed that book in the last hour.
6th-May-2011 08:37 pm (UTC)
I needed this today.
7th-May-2011 12:06 am (UTC)
I love this quote. I also love how they ran this scene in the movie.
7th-May-2011 12:14 am (UTC)
Gave me the shivers.
7th-May-2011 05:20 pm (UTC)
I love that part. (And Susan, and Death, and Pratchett in general.)
9th-May-2011 04:34 pm (UTC) - Pfft
Reductionists annoy me. You could similarly grind down the universe and not find one atom of heat. But you'd not likely deny (or get poetic) about heat in a similar way.

Likewise, you'd not find purple, nor an armpit, nor representative government, nor the number one. But those things exist, too, and one need not be a fantasist, nor a believer of anything that is untrue to claim they exist.
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