Lewis Thomas – There’s really no such thing…


“There’s really no such thing as the agony of dying. I’m quite sure that pain is shut off at the moment of death. You see, something happens when the body knows it’s about to go. Peptide hormones are released by cells in the hypothalamus and pituitary gland. Endorphins. They attach themselves to the cells responsible for feeling pain.”
-Lewis Thomas

Lewis Thomas – The cloning of humans is…


“The cloning of humans is on most of the lists of things to worry about from Science, along with behaviour control, genetic engineering, transplanted heads, computer poetry and the unrestrained growth of plastic flowers.”
-Lewis Thomas

Lewis Thomas – It is only when you…


“It is only when you watch the dense mass of thousands of ants, crowded together around the Hill, blackening the ground, that you begin to see the whole beast, and now you observe it thinking, planning, calculating. It is an intelligence, a kind of live computer, with crawling bits for its wits.”
-Lewis Thomas

Lewis Thomas – A lot of people fear…


“A lot of people fear death because they think that so overwhelming an experience has to be painful, but I’ve seen quite a few deaths, and, with one exception, I’ve never known anyone to undergo anything like agony. That’s amazing when you think about it. I mean, how complicated the mechanism is that’s being taken apart.”
-Lewis Thomas

Lewis Thomas – Medical knowledge and technical savvy…


“Medical knowledge and technical savvy are biodegradable. The sort of medicine that was practiced in Boston or New York or Atlanta fifty years ago would be as strange to a medical student or intern today as the ceremonial dance of a !Kung San tribe would seem to a rock festival audience in Hackensack.”
-Lewis Thomas

Lewis Thomas – I won’t compare ants and…


“I won’t compare ants and people, but ants give us a useful model of how single members of a community can become so organized that they end up resembling, in effect, one big collective brain. Our own exploding population and communication technology are leading us that way.”
-Lewis Thomas

Lewis Thomas – I don’t want to be…


“I don’t want to be reincarnated, that’s for sure. When you’ve had rewarding experiences in your life – a loving family, friends – you don’t need additional reassurances that you’re going to do something with a new cast of characters. I’d just as soon pass.”
-Lewis Thomas