“The moon does not fight. It attacks no one. It does not worry. It does not try to crush others. It keeps to its course, but by its very nature, it gently influences. What other body could pull an entire ocean from shore to shore? The moon is faithful to its nature and its power is never diminished.” – Ming-Dao Deng
“We hardly had time to draw a breath, when suddenly we were enveloped by a palpable presence, inky black and clammy cold, that held us paralyzed and breathless in its grasp, then shook us loose, and leaped over the city and above the bay, and with ever and ever increasing swiftness and incredible speed, swept over the Mediterranean and disappeared in the eastern horizon. Shivering from its icy embrace and seized with a superstitious terror, we gasped, ‘What was that?’ THAT was the Shadow of the Moon!” – Rebecca Joslin
“The hair on the back of your neck is up, you’ve got goosebumps… It’s just absolutely beautiful and at the same time a little terrifying because there’s nothing you can do about this. There’s no power on Earth that can stop this.” — Former NASA astrophysicist Fred Espenak on a total eclipse
“I waited two or three moments: then looked up; he was standing there petrified. With a common impulse the multitude rose slowly up and stared into the sky. I followed their eyes; as sure as guns, there was my eclipse beginning! The life went boiling through my veins; I was a new man! The rim of black spread slowly into the sun’s disk, my heart beat higher and higher, and still the assemblage and the priest stared into the sky, motionless. I knew that this gaze would be turned upon me, next. When it was, I was ready. I was in one of the most grand attitudes I ever struck, with my arm stretched up pointing to the sun. It was a noble effect.” —Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, 1890
“You develop an instant global consciousness, a people orientation, an intense dissatisfaction with the state of the world, and a compulsion to do something about it. From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, ‘Look at that, you son of a bitch.’” – Edgar D. Mitchell
“During the annular eclipse of May 30, 1984, chimpanzees at the Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center in Atlanta migrated to the top of a climbing structure as the sky began to darken and the temperature started to drop. As it got darker, they oriented their bodies toward the sun, turning their faces upward at maximum. When daylight began to return, they climbed down and resumed normal activities. They didn’t repeat the behavior at sunset, nor had they done so at nightfall on the previous day, indicating that this unusual event had influenced their behavior. I was struck by the behavior of one young chimp at the moment of greatest darkness: from a treetop, he raised his hand and gestured in the direction of the sun. I have done the same.” – Anthony Aveni
“We must strive to be like the moon. No one grumbles when the moon shines.” – Ishmael Beah
“It was lunar symbolism that enabled man to relate and connect such heterogeneous things as: birth, becoming, death, and resurrection; the waters, plants, woman, fecundity, and immortality; the cosmic darkness, prenatal existence, and life after death, followed by the rebirth of the lunar type (‘light coming out of darkness’); weaving, the symbol of the ‘thread of life,’ fate, temporality, and death; and yet others. In general most of the ideas of cycle, dualism, polarity, opposition, conflict, but also of reconciliation of contraries, of coincidentia oppositorum, were either discovered or clarified by virtue of lunar symbolism. We may even speak of a metaphysics of the moon, in the sense of a consistent system of ‘truths’ relating to the mode of being peculiar to living creatures, to everything in the cosmos that shares in life, that is, in becoming, growth and waning, death and resurrection.” – Mircea Eliade
“When the light was almost at the dimmest point no bees were leaving the hives, but the returning individuals were pouring in by the thousands. The space above the hives was like a funnel into which bees were literally pouring from every direction. When the light began to increase there was not a bee to be seen in the air. For them evidently it was the sudden advent of night. I watched to see whether with the return of light they would go out again. Normally they go out till dusk, but in spite of the bright sunshine following the eclipse only an occasional bee ventured forth.” — Unknown
“We are going to the moon. That is not very far. Man has so much farther to go within himself.” – Anais Nin
“I never really thought about how when I look at the moon, it’s the same moon as Shakespeare and Marie Antoinette and George Washington and Cleopatra looked at.” – Susan Beth Pfeffer
“The moon had been observing the earth close-up longer than anyone. It must have witnessed all of the phenomena occurring – and all of the acts carried out – on this earth. But the moon remained silent; it told no stories. All it did was embrace the heavy past with a cool, measured detachment. On the moon there was neither air nor wind. Its vacuum was perfect for preserving memories unscathed. No one could unlock the heart of the moon. Aomame raised her glass to the moon and asked, ‘Have you gone to bed with someone in your arms lately?’
The moon did not answer.
‘Do you have any friends?’ she asked.
The moon did not answer.
‘Don’t you get tired of always playing it cool?’
The moon did not answer.” – Haruki Murakami
“Sometimes, when you’re deep in the countryside, you meet three girls, walking along the hill tracks in the dusk, spinning. They each have a spindle, and on to these they are spinning their wool, milk-white, like the moonlight. In fact, it is the moonlight, the moon itself, which is why they don’t carry a distaff. They’re not Fates, or anything terrible; they don’t affect the lives of men; all they have to do is to see that the world gets its hours of darkness, and they do this by spinning the moon down out of the sky. Night after night, you can see the moon getting less and less, the ball of light waning, while it grown on the spindles of the maidens. Then, at length, the moon is gone, and the world has darkness, and rest…..
“…on the darkest night, the maidens take their spindles down to the sea, to wash their wool. And the wool slips from the spindles into the water, and unravels in long ripples of light from the shore to the horizon, and there is the moon again, rising above the sea….Only when all the wool is washed, and wound again into a white ball in the sky, can the moon-spinners start their work once more…” – Mary Stewart
“When we were alive we spent much of our time staring up at the cosmos and wondering what was out there. We were obsessed with the moon and whether we could one day visit it. The day we finally walked on it was celebrated worldwide as perhaps man’s greatest achievement. But it was while we were there, gathering rocks from the moon’s desolate landscape, that we looked up and caught a glimpse of just how incredible our own planet was. Its singular astonishing beauty. We called her Mother Earth. Because she gave birth to us, and then we sucked her dry.” – Jon Stewart
“Her luminary reflection; her constancy under all her phases, rising and setting by her appointed times, waxing and waning; the forced invariability of her aspect; her indeterminate response to inaffirmative interrogation; her potency over effluent and refluent waters; her power to enamour, to mortify, to invest with beauty, to render insane, to incite to and aid delinquency; the tranquil inscrutability of her visage: the terribility of her isolated dominant resplendent propinquity; her omens of tempest and of calm; the stimulation of her light, her motion and her presence; the admonition of her craters, her arid seas, her silence: her splendour, when visible; her attraction, when invisible.” – James Joyce
“For me, the most ironic token of [the first human moon landing] is the plaque signed by President Richard M. Nixon that Apollo 11 took to the moon. It reads, ‘We came in peace for all Mankind.’ As the United States was dropping seven and a half megatons of conventional explosives on small nations in Southeast Asia, we congratulated ourselves on our humanity. We would harm no one on a lifeless rock.” – Carl Sagan
“But even when the moon looks like it’s waning…it’s actually never changing shape. Don’t ever forget that.” – Ai Yazawa