Monday, December 17, 2007

Arthur C. Clarke's "Love That Universe": When humans wanted to make first contact with aliens

This story starts off well, but I found the ending too tame. And it's a fantasy kind of story.

Story summary.

A "Black Dwarf" was discovered 10 years ago in outer solar system. "Only ninety years from now, it will make its perihelion passage and swing around the Sun as it heads once more into the depths of space - leaving a shattered solar system behind." There is nothing humans can do to change its path.

But humans know of the existence of unnatural "stellar structures". Only immensely advanced creatures could have made them, & deflecting the current peril of humanity should be child's play for them.

But how to contact them? Nearest super-civilization is 7,000 light years away! Well, a human research station called "Antigeos" - on the side of Sun opposite earth - has discovered a new kinds of signals - "radiations of mentality", some sort of telepathy. These signals travel at "a speed that cannot yet be measured". We can contact the aliens.

But there is a glitch. You need strong emotions to generate such signals. And for signals to be strong enough for current need, a significant fraction of humanity has to experience this emotion simultaneously! Panic & fear are useful, but not good enough. Love is the only emotion that gives us a chance! "WE MUST LOVE ONE ANOTHER OR DIE."

Fact sheet.

"Love That Universe", short story, review
First published: Escapade, 1961.
Rating: B


aleXander hirka said...

The energy Arthur C Clarke was referring to - the love - was that generated through sexuality, orgasm.
On 13 August 2001, in response to my webpage announcing One World Orgasm Day,
I received an email from Sir Arthur C. Clarke in Sri Lanka.
" Dear Alex,
Beat your project on a hi-tech global scale by almost 40 years in LOVE THAT UNIVERSE - for a life-and-death reason!
Arthur Clarke "

Timothy Blaisdell said...

He called it "O Day". He was talking about orgasm. I think it was supposed to be kind of subtly humorous. Billions of people all over the Earth must come to an orgasm at the same instant. It's our only hope!