Quotes from Parable of the Sower

Octavia E. Butler ·  345 pages

Rating: (33.1K votes)


“There is no end
To what a living world
Will demand of you.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“The child in each of us
Knows paradise.
Paradise is home.
Home as it was
Or home as it should have been.

Paradise is one's own place,
One's own people,
One's own world,
Knowing and known,
Perhaps even
Loving and loved.

Yet every child
Is cast from paradise-
Into growth and new community,
Into vast, ongoing
Change.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“Cities controlled by big companies are old hat in science fiction. My grandmother left a whole bookcase of old science fiction novels. The company-city subgenre always seemed to star a hero who outsmarted, overthrew, or escaped "the company." I've never seen one where the hero fought like hell to get taken in and underpaid by the company. In real life, that's the way it will be. That's the way it always is.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“I'm trying to speak--to write-the truth. I"m trying to be clear. I'm not interested in being fancy, or even original. Clarity and truth will be plenty, if I can only achieve them.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“The world is full of painful stories. Sometimes it seems as though there aren't any other kind...”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower



“Freedom is dangerous but it's precious, too. You can't just throw it away or let it slip away. You can't sell it for bread and pottage.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“The essentials," I answered, "are to learn to shape God with forethought, care, and work; to educate and benefit their community, their families, and themselves; and to contribute to the fulfillment of the Destiny.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“God is Change.

Earthseed: The Books of the Living
Lauren Oya Olamina”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“Civilization is to groups what intelligence is to individuals. It is a means of combining the intelligence of many to achieve ongoing group adaptation. Civilization, like intelligence, may serve well, serve adequately, or fail to serve its adaptive function. When civilization fails to serve, it must disintegrate unless it is acted upon by unifying internal or external forces.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“All that you touch You Change. All that you Change Changes you. The only lasting truth Is Change.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower



“Create no images of God. Accept the images that God has provided. They are everywhere, in everything. God is Change— Seed to tree, tree to forest; Rain to river, river to sea; Grubs to bees, bees to swarm. From one, many; from many, one; Forever uniting, growing, dissolving— forever Changing. The universe is God’s self-portrait.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“So I preached from Luke, chapter eighteen, verses one through eight: the parable of the importunate widow. It’s one I’ve always liked. A widow is so persistent in her demands for justice that she overcomes the resistance of a judge who fears neither God nor man. She wears him down. Moral: The weak can overcome the strong if the weak persist. Persisting isn’t always safe, but it’s often necessary.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“Embrace diversity. Unite— Or be divided, robbed, ruled, killed By those who see you as prey. Embrace diversity Or be destroyed.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“My God doesn’t love me or hate me or watch over me or know me at all, and I feel no love for or loyalty to my God. My God just is.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“why can’t I do what others have done—ignore the obvious. Live a normal life. It’s hard enough just to do that in this world.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower



“Belief Initiates and guides action— Or it does nothing.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“They have no power to improve their lives, but they have the power to make others even more miserable. And the only way to prove to yourself that you have power is to use it.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“That’s all anybody can do right now. Live. Hold out. Survive. I don’t know whether good times are coming back again. But I know that won’t matter if we don’t survive these times.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“There is no power in having strength and brains, and yet waiting for God to fix things for you or take revenge for you.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“Intelligence is ongoing, individual adaptability. Adaptations that an intelligent species may make in a single generation, other species make over many generations of selective breeding and selective dying.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower



“These things frighten people. It’s best not to talk about them.” “But, Dad, that’s like … like ignoring a fire in the living room because we’re all in the kitchen, and, besides, house fires are too scary to talk about.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“          Embrace diversity.           Unite—           Or be divided,           robbed,           ruled,           killed           By those who see you as prey.           Embrace diversity           Or be destroyed.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“AT LEAST THREE YEARS ago, my fathers God stopped being my God. His church stopped being my church. And yet, today, because I’m a coward, I let myself be initiated into that church. I let my father baptize me in all three names of that God who isn’t mine any more. My God has another name.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“We give lip service to acceptance, as though acceptance were enough.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“I’m sorry that astronaut will be brought back from her own chosen heaven.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower



“All that you touch, You Change. All that you Change, Changes you. The only lasting truth Is Change. God”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“Your teachers
Are all around you.
All that you perceive,
All that you experience,
All that is given to you
or taken from you,
All that you love or hate,
need or fear
Will teach you--
If you will learn.
God is your first
and your last teacher.
God is your harshest teacher:
subtle,
demanding.
Learn or die.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“          Why is the universe?           To shape God.           Why is God?           To shape the universe.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“          The Self must create           Its own reasons for being.           To shape God,           Shape Self.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower


“We collected all the bones we could find, and yesterday, Natividad wrapped them in a shawl that she had knitted years ago. It was the most beautiful thing she owned.

"A thing like that should serve the living," Bankole said when she offered it.

"You are living," Natividad said. "I like you. I wish I could have met your sister.”
― Octavia E. Butler, quote from Parable of the Sower



About the author

Octavia E. Butler
Born place: in Pasadena, California, The United States
Born date June 22, 1947
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