Quote of the moment: Books as lighthouses in the dark sea of time


Jeffrey Robbins, a human character in the animated cartoon series,

Jeffrey Robbins, a human character in the animated cartoon series, “The Gargoyles”

The written word is all that stands between memory and oblivion. Without books as our anchors, we are cast adrift, neither teaching nor learning. They are windows on the past, mirrors on the present, and prisms reflecting all possible futures. Books are lighthouses, erected in the dark sea of time.

Jeffrey Robbins, a character in the cartoon series, “The Gargoyles”

Now available on Youtube.  To get the quote above, to go to 21:30 in this video:

Tip of the old scrub brush to James Kessler.

7 Responses to Quote of the moment: Books as lighthouses in the dark sea of time

  1. Ed Darrell says:

    Thank you, Rina H.

    I see the Gargoyles episode is available on YouTube (I hope it’s not pirated . . .). I’ve added it to the post.

    Like

  2. Rina H says:

    I have watched this particular episode from the ‘Gargoyle’ series. One of the gargoyles cannot read and is ashamed to learn ( he feels he will look stupid among his fellow gargoyles who can read). He has a secret yearning to learn and he listens longingly when someone reads. He has a favorite author.

    The story-line proceeds — he gets the opportunity to meet said author. What he discovers is that the author is blind! A blind man sitting in a lonely house putting his thoughts to words- those same words that so many would later cherish and become so dear to them. All his shame vanishes. A blind man who cannot see is writing a book, the least he can do is find the courage to learn to read those words.

    In the end he realizes that despite having the capacity to see, he was blind too in feeling shame in learning. That blind man saw more than him- he knew the value of knowledge and cherished it.

    It is at the end of this episode that comes this wonderful quote.

    “The written word is all that stands
    between memory and oblivion.
    Without books as our anchors,
    we are cast adrift,
    neither teaching nor learning.

    They are windows on the past,
    mirrors on the present, and
    prisms reflecting all possible futures.

    Books are lighthouses, erected in the dark sea of time”.

    Like

  3. Ed Darrell says:

    Jan — All the librarians were dismissed? Who will look after the libraries?

    Not to make too much of it or anything, but doesn’t this sound a lot like the story of Hypatia? What happened to the library after her death?

    Another skirmish lost by the good guys in the War on Education.

    Like

  4. Ellie says:

    It’s a great quote. I am unfamiliar with the series, but the quote is a keeper. Thanks!

    Like

  5. alwaysjan says:

    Corny as it may sound, the quote gave me goosebumps. I’m going to post it in my classroom library after a discussion with my newbie third graders in September. All of our district’s librarians got the ax. A library is a terrible thing to waste.

    Like

  6. Nick K says:

    The quote is, in this case, in defiance to Fox News, in its right wing stupidity, coming up with the idea that because there are such things as e-readers we don’t need to spend millions of dollars in libraries.

    It’s proof that Fox News and the right wing want to make the American people stupid, ignorant and gullible. All the easier to control with.

    Like

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