In article <***@kithrup.com>,
Dorothy J Heydt <***@kithrup.com> wrote:
>In article <firstname.lastname@example.org>,
> <***@virginmedia.com> wrote:
>>I remember this as the very dismal conclusion in a short story where
>>humans have kidnapped superior aliens to solve the mysteries about them.
>>I forget both title and author. Does anyone know?
>I can think of two possibilities. One is Piper's "Oomphel in the
>Sky," in which aliens have formed cargo cults around human tech,
>and are convinced by a human that humans lack something the
>aliens have, namely, souls.
>And another in which the aliens have instantaneous trans-galactic
>teleportation, in which they are destroyed at one end and
>reconstituted at the other, and the human says, "But this is
>wonderful! You're demonstrating that we have immortal souls!"
>And the alien says sadly, "You don't." That was in _Analog_
>sometime in the seventies, I think, can't recall title or author.
Sounds like a different one, but Analog also had a whole series of
stories addressing the teleportation/soul thing around that timeframe.
Hmm... Apparently "Ray Brown" and the "Reformed Sufi" setting.
What's not in Columbia anymore..