Wednesday, March 19, 2008

A brief tribute to Sir Arthur C. Clarke

Anyone who played table-tennis with Sir Arthur C. Clarke at the Otters sports club will remember him to be a bit grumpy whenever he lost. But as far as I know that was the only flaw in this genius of a man. His contribution to futuristic theories and science fiction has been phenomenal. While “2001: A Space Odyssey” has been one of his most popular works, I especially enjoyed “Childhood's End", "The Fountains of Paradise", “Richter 10”, “The Hammer of God”, and the Rama series. He somehow manages to inject humanity and consciousness as well as technology into his stories. As a Sri Lankan, I have been honored that he adopted my country to settle down in.

In one of his famous quotes he said "The greatest tragedy in mankind's entire history may be the hijacking of morality by religion". But I don’t believe he would have minded me saying “May he attain Nibbana”!


Sanesh Fernando said...

Leaving all the Good and the Bad of all people, don't you think in recent times lot of very known and famous people are leaving us...???

Bimal said...

But hey, Mervyn is still around! :-)

Aparently on his 90th birthday, Sir Clarke had three birthday wishes: For E.T. to call, for man to kick his oil habit and for peace in Sri Lanka.

I hope E.T. would hurry up.

seshi said...

I knew Arthur Clarke as an individual who never gave up. Many a time I've met him at technology conferences, making quite a valuable appearance despite the physical difficulties he had.
I got so much motivation and courage from the few words he spoke with me everytime.

Not only has he contributed greatly to the world of technology, but he has made a great impact on peoples lives in the process.

I thank God for his presence in this world during my life time.

Sujeewa Kokawala said...

BTW bims, he may have minded you wish seeing the way he wanted his funearl being organized.

Amazing man he is. One day in a distant future people will read his fiction books like the drawings of Da Vinci and will debate whether there really was a monolith in moon in 1998 or look for signs of a space lift in Samanal mountain.

I may be little off in that last para, but hey, isn't it enough to start another fiction. Surely enough lot for ACC to have a chapter in a fiction. Pity we lack his ability.

Nevertheless his DNA is orbitting earth waiting to be resurrected like he did with Frank Poole in 3001. He wouldnn't mind it being done by ETs, and loves to exist in a diff planet (as he ahs stated sometime before demise)

Bimal said...

"...he may have minded you wish seeing the way he wanted his funearl being organized..."

Actually I thought about that – you may be right. Although he did not subscribe to religious beliefs I believe he was graceful enough to respect others' faiths. I was glad to see that the funeral was fairly a low-key affair (by Sri Lankan standards) keeping in line with ACC’s instructions no doubt.