The Lathe of Heaven

By Ursula K. Le Guin

4.11 - ratings 56,684

A classic science fiction novel by one of the greatest writers of the genre, set in a future world where one man's dreams control the fate of humanity. In a future world racked by violence and environmental catastrophes, George Orr wakes up one day to discover that his dreams have the ability to alter reality. He seeks help from Dr. William Haber, a psychiatrist who immedi A classic science fiction novel by one of the...

Book details

August 19th 2003 by Harper Perennial Modern Classics

(first published May 1971)

Edition Language
English

Quotes From "The Lathe of Heaven"

"Love doesn't just sit there, like a stone, it has to be made, like bread; remade all the time, made new."
"The end justifies the means. But what if there never is an end? All we have is means."
"Things don't have purposes, as if the universe were a machine, where every part has a useful function. What's the function of a galaxy? I don't know if our life has a purpose and I don't see that it matters. What does matter is that we're a part. Like a thread in a cloth or a grass-blade in a field. It is and we are. What we do is like wind blowing on the grass."
"You have to help another person. But it's not right to play God with masses of people. To be God you have to know what you're doing. And to do any good at all, just believing you're right and your motives are good isn't enough."
"Current-borne, wave-flung, tugged hugely by the whole might of ocean, the jellyfish drifts in the tidal abyss. The light shines through it, and the dark enters it. Borne, flung, tugged from anywhere to anywhere, for in the deep sea there is no compass but nearer and farther, higher and lower, the jellyfish hangs and sways; pulses move slight and quick within it, as the vast diurnal pulses beat in the moondriven sea. Hanging, swaying, pulsing, the most vulnerable and insubstantial creature, it has for its defense the violence and power of the whole ocean, to which it has entrusted its being, its going, and its will."
"We're in the world, not against it. It doesn't work to try to stand
outside things and run them, that way. It just doesn't work, it goes against life. There is a way but you have to follow it. The world is, no matter how we think it ought to be. You have to be with it. You have to let it be."
"You don't speak of dreams as unreal. They exist. They leave a mark behind them."
"In so far as one denies what is, one is possessed by what is not, the compulsions, the fantasies, the terrors that flock to fill the void."

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