— Stephen Hawking British theoretical physicist, cosmologist, and author 1942
Context: I have lived with the prospect of an early death for the last 49 years. I'm not afraid of death, but I'm in no hurry to die. I have so much I want to do first... I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its components fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken down computers; that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark.
As quoted in "Stephen Hawking: 'There is no heaven; it's a fairy story'" by Ian Sample, in The Guardian (15 May 2011) http://www.theguardian.com/science/2011/may/15/stephen-hawking-interview-there-is-no-heaven