Earthquake Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 114 quotes )
I was awakened by a tremendous earthquake, and though I hadn ever before enjoyed a storm of this sort, the strange thrilling motion could not be mistaken, and I ran out of my cabin, both glad and frightened, shouting, "A noble earthquake! A noble earthquake" feeling sure I was going to learn something.
The thing about old friends is not that they love you, but that they know you. They remember that disastrous New Year's Eve when you mixed White Russians and champagne, and how you wore that red maternity dress until everyone was sick of seeing the blaze of it in the office, and the uncomfortable couch in your first apartment and the smoky stove in your beach rental. They look at you and don't really think you look older because they've grown old along with you, and, like the faded paint in a beloved room, they're used to the look. And then one of them is gone, and you've lost a chunk of yourself. The stories of the terrorist attacks of 2001, the tsunami, the Japanese earthquake always used numbers, the deaths of thousands a measure of how great the disaster. Catastrophe is numerical. Loss is singular, one beloved at a time.
Nature has many tricks wherewith she convinces man of his finity, - the ceaseless flow of the tides, the fury of storm, the shock of the earthquake, the long roll of heavens artillery, - but the most tremendous, the most stupefying of all, is the passive phase of the White Silence. All movement ceases, the sky clears, the heavens are as brass; the slightest whisper seems sacrilege, and man becomes timid, affrighted at the sound of his own voice. Sole speck of life journeying across the ghostly wastes of a dead world, he trembles at his audacity, realizes that his is a maggots life, nothing more. Strange thoughts arise unsummoned, and the mystery of all things strives for utterance. And the fear od death, of God, of the universe, comes over him, - the hope of the Resurrection and the life, the yearning for immortality, the vain striving of the imprisoned essence, - it is then, if ever, man walks alone with God.- The White Silence
There should be more natural disasters. I like those because you can't blame anyone. You can't put an earthquake on trial. You can't send a flood to the chair. Look at the fucking zoo I live in. All these bent up little players running around through the ruins saying, "Isn't this groovy and decadent? Cool!" Looking like Death and thinking they're something. I would like to help. I really would. I wonder if the guy at the gun store would give me a discount on the bullets I'll need if I told him what I was up to.
It's interesting to speculate on the reasons that make men so anxious to debase themselves. As in that idea of feeling small before nature. It's not a bromide, it's practically an institution. Have you noticed how self-righteous a man sounds when he tells you about it? Look, he seems to say, I'm so glad to be a pygmy, that's how virtuous I am. Have you heard with what delight people quote some great celebrity who's proclaimed that he's not so great when he looks at Niagara Falls? It's as if they were smacking their lips in sheer glee that their best is dust before the brute force of an earthquake. As if they were sprawling on all fours, rubbing their foreheads in the mud to the majesty of a hurricane. But that's not the spirit that leashed fire, steam, electricity, that crossed oceans in sailing sloops, that built airplanes and dams...and skyscrapers. What is it they fear? What is they hate so much, those who love to crawl? And why?
Mari remembered what she had read in the young girl's eyes the moment she had come into the refectory: fear. Fear. Veronika might feel insecurity, shyness, shame, constraint, but why fear? That was only justifiable when confronted by a real threat: ferocious animals, armed attackers, earthquakes, but not a group of people gathered together in a refectory. But human beings are like that,' she thought. 'We've replaced nearly all our emotions with fear.
If youth is the season of hope, it is often so only in the sense that our elders are hopeful about us; for no age is so apt as youth to think its emotions, partings, and resolves are the last of their kind. Each crisis seems final, simply because it is new. We are told that the oldest inhabitants in Peru do not cease to be agitated by the earthquakes, but they probably see beyond each shock, and reflect that there are plenty more to come.
Everywhere, words are mixing. Words and lyrics and dialogue are mixing in a soup that could trigger a chain reaction. Maybe acts of God are justthe right combination of media junk thrown out into the air. The wrong words collide and call up an earthquake. The way rain dances called storms, the right combination of words might call down tornadoes. Too many advertising jingles commingling could be behind global warming. Too manytelevision reruns bouncing around might cause hurricanes. Cancer. AIDS.
You cannot mend the chromosome, quell the earthquake, or stanch the flood. You cannot atone for the dead tyrants’ murders and you alone cannot stop living tyrants. As Martin Buber saw it, the world of ordinary days “affords” us that precise association with god that redeems both us and our speck of world. God entrusts and allots to everyone an area to redeem: this creased and feeble life, “the world in which you live, just as it is, and not otherwise.” “Insofar as he cultivates and enjoys them in holiness, he frees their souls…he who prays and sings in holiness, eats and speaks in holiness…through him the sparks which have fallen will be uplifted, and the worlds which have fallen will be delivered and renewed.
After all, there was nothing preposterous and world-shaking in the idea that there might be events which overstepped the limited categories of space, time, and causality. Animals were known to sense beforehand storms and earthquakes. There were dreams which foresaw the death of certain persons, clocks which stopped at the moment of death, glasses which shattered at the critical moment. All these things had been taken for granted in the world of my childhood. And now I was apparently the only person who had ever heard of them. In all earnestness I asked myself what kind of world I had stumbled into. Plainly, the urban world knew nothing about the country world, the real world of mountains, woods and rivers, of animals and ‘God’s thoughts’ (plants and crystals). I found this explanation comforting. At all events, it bolstered my self-esteem.
Thought Experiment : Imagine that you are Johnny Carson and find yourself caught in an intolerable one-on-one conversation at a cocktail party from which there is no escape. Which of the two following events would you prefer to take place: (1) That the other person become more and more witty and charming, the music more beautiful, the scene transformed to a villa at Capri on the loveliest night of the year, while you find yourself more and more at a loss; or (2) that you are still in Beverly Hills and the chandeliers begin to rattle, a 7.5 Richter earthquake takes place, and presently you find yourself and the other person alive and well, and talking under a mound of rubble. If your choice is (2), explain why it is possible for a true conversation to take place under the conditions of (2) but not (1).
Whenever you see redwoods in the National Geographic, or fog, or watch Shamu on TV, you'll be seeing me. Whenever you smell pine and spruce and day-old socks, that's me. Whenever you hear wind in the tops of trees, that's me, and whenever you taste crab and wine and Brie, that's me, and whenever the wind blows your hat off or you get under a cold shower, that's me. Whenever you read about an earthquake, that's me, sure as gun's iron. Whenever you smell wet dog, that's Curtis and me, and whenever you see a Rattus rattus, that's Forrest, and I'm right behind him. Never see me again? You'll never not see me. And I'll never not see you . . .Didn't I say I'd always be your same stars? If you get to missing me, just look up.
You might think that, by now, people would have become accustomed to the idea of natural catastrophes. We live on a planet that is still cooling and which has fissures and faults in its crust; this much is accepted even by those who think that the globe is only six thousand years old, as well as by those who believe that the earth was "designed" to be this way. Even in such a case, it is to be expected that earthquakes will occur and that, if they occur under the seabed, tidal waves will occur also. Yet two sorts of error are still absolutely commonplace. The first of these is the idiotic belief that seismic events are somehow "timed" to express the will of God. Thus, reasoning back from the effect, people will seriously attempt to guess what sin or which profanity led to the verdict of the tectonic plates. The second error, common even among humanists, is to borrow the same fallacy for satirical purposes and to employ it to disprove a benign deity.
Every last minute of my life has been preordained and I'm sick and tired of it. How this feels is I'm just another task in God's daily planner: the Italian Renaissance penciled in for right after the Dark Ages.... The Information Age is scheduled immediately after the Industrial Revolution. Then the Postmodern Era, then the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Famine. Check. Pestilence. Check. War. Check. Death. Check. And between the big events, the earthquakes and the tidal waves, God's got me squeezed in for a cameo appearance. Then maybe in thirty years, or maybe next year, God's daily planner has me finished.
I was always attracted not by some quantifiable, external beauty, but by something deep down, something absolute. Just as some people have a secret love for rainstorms, earthquakes, or blackouts, I liked that certain undefinable something directed my way by members of the opposite sex. For want of a better word, call it magnetism. Like it or not, it’s a kind of power that snares people and reels them in.
Somewhere int he flesh of the earth the dreadful earthquake shuddered, the tide walked to and fro on the leash of the moon, rainbows formed, winds swept the sky like giant brooms piling up clouds before them, clouds which writhed into different shapes, melted into rain or darkened, bruised themselves against an unseen antagonist and went on their way, laced with forking rivers of lightning, complete with white electric tributaries. Out of this infinite vision an infinity of details could be drawn, but Sonny had settled on one, and from the endless series a particular beach was chosen and began to form around Laura - a beach of iron-dark sand and shells like frail stars, and a wonderful wide sea that stretched, neither green nor blue, but inked by the approach of night into violet and black, wrinkling with its own salty puzzles, right out to a distant, pure horizon.
Well, it's a choice like any other, even though it's stupid to believe we can control the world and to allow ourselves to be lulled into a false sense of security that leaves us totally unprepared for life; because then, when you least expect it, an earthquake throws up a range of mountains, a bolt of lightning kills a tree that was preparing for its summer rebirth, or a hunting accident puts paid to the life of an honest man.
There she was, welcoming him in, farting prrrrrrp like ten thousand earthquakes, belching arrrp and og like a million volcanoes, while the whole universe roared with approving laughter. She swung tits like sagging moons at him, drew from black teeth an endless snake of bacon-rind, pelted him with balls of ear-wax and snuffled green snot in his direction. The thrones roared and the powers were helpless. Enderby was suffocated by smells: sulphuretted hydrogren, unwashed armpits, halitosis, faeces, standing urine, putrefying meat - all thrust into his mouth and nostrils in squelchy balls. 'Help,' he tried to call. 'Help help help.' He fell, crawled, crying, 'Help, help.' The black, which was solid laughter and filth, closed on him. He gave one last scream before yielding to it.
I remember, in hot floods, the way he slept, still as death, with his face washed flat, stony as a carved tomb and exquisite. His weakness and his ravening bitter needs were terrible, and beautiful, and irresistible as an earthquake. He scalded or smothered anyone he needed, but his needing and the hurt that it caused me were the most life I have ever had. Remember what a poor thing I have always been and forgive me.
Do not be sad. Or think Adieu. Never Adieu. We will watch the sun set again - many times, and perhaps we'll see the Emerald Drop, the green flash that brings good fortune. And you must laugh and chatter as you used to do - telling me about the battle off the Saints or the picnic at Marie Galante - that famous picnic that turned into a fight. Or the pirates and what they did between voyages. For every voage might be their last. Sun and sangoree's a heady mixture. Then - the earthquake. Oh yes, people say that god was angry at the things they did, woke from his sleep, one breath and they were gone.
All is finite in the present; and even that finite is infinite in it velocity of flight towards death. But in God there is nothing finite...Upon a night of earthquake he builds a thousand years of pleasant habitations for man. Upon the sorrow of an infant he raises oftentimes from human intellects glorious vintages that could not else have been.
I should like to save the Shire, if I could - though there have been times when I thought the inhabitants too stupid and dull for words, and have felt that an earthquake or an invasion of dragons might be good for them. But I don't feel like that now. I feel that as long as the Shire lies behind, safe and comfortable, I shall find wandering more bearable: I shall know that somewhere there is a firm foothold, even if my feet cannot stand there again.