The most important thing I learned on Tralfamadore was that when a person dies he only appears to die. He is still very much alive in the past, so it is very silly for people to cry at his funeral. All moments, past, present and future, always have existed, always will exist. The Tralfamadorians can look at all the different moments just that way we can look at a stretch of the Rocky Mountains, for instance. They can see how permanent all the moments are, and they can look at any moment that interests them. It is just an illusion we have here on Earth that one moment follows another one, like beads on a string, and that once a moment is gone it is gone forever.
When a Tralfamadorian sees a corpse, all he thinks is that the dead person is in bad condition in the particular moment, but that the same person is just fine in plenty of other moments.
-Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
“If you need something to worship, then worship life – all life, every last crawling bit of it! We’re all in this beauty together!”
— Paul Atreides from ‘Dune Messiah’ by Frank Herbert
Only in silence the word,
only in dark the light,
only in dying life:
bright the hawk’s flight
on the empty sky.
-Ursula K. LeGuin: Earthsea