„Everything that happens once can never happen again. But everything that happens twice will surely happen a third time.“

—  Paulo Coelho, p. 184<!-- p. 162 -->; this also has been quoted as "What happens once will never happen again. But what happens twice will surely happen a third time."
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Paulo Coelho389
1947
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„Time is nature's way to keep everything from happening all at once.“

—  John Archibald Wheeler American physicist 1911 - 2008
Wheeler quoted this saying in Complexity, Entropy, and the Physics of Information (1990), p. 10 http://books.google.com/books?id=mdjsOeTgatsC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA10#v=onepage&q&f=false, with a footnote attributing it to "graffiti in the men's room of the Pecan Street Cafe, Austin, Texas". Later publications, such as Paul Davies' 1995 book About Time (p. 236), credited Wheeler with variations of this saying, but the quip is actually much older. The earliest known source is Ray Cummings' 1922 science fiction novel The Girl in the Golden Atom, http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/21094 Ch. V: " 'Time,' he said, 'is what keeps everything from happening at once.' "<!-- according to Science-Fiction: The Early Years by Everett F. Bleiler, p. 171 http://books.google.com/books?id=KEZxhkG5eikC&pg=PA171, the novel was a composite of two earlier stories published in 1919 and 1920--> It also appears in his 1929 novel The Man Who Mastered Time. http://books.google.com/books?id=YdZEAAAAYAAJ&q=%22everything+from+happening+at+once%22#search_anchor The earliest known occurrence other than Cummings is from 1962 in Film Facts: Volume 5, p. 48 http://books.google.com/books?id=sr0vAQAAIAAJ&q=%22everything+from+happening+at+once%22.

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„Time is nature's way of keeping everything from happening at once.“

—  Albert Einstein German-born physicist and founder of the theory of relativity 1879 - 1955
It seems that this quote has only begun to be attributed to Einstein recently, the earliest published source located being the 2008 book Visualization for Dummies by Bernard Golden, p. 85 http://books.google.com/books?id=2ppZkdmpSlgC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA85#v=onepage&q&f=false. Before that it was often attributed to the physicist John Wheeler, who quoted the saying in Complexity, Entropy, and the Physics of Information, p. 10 http://books.google.com/books?id=mdjsOeTgatsC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA10#v=onepage&q&f=false. In fact, this quip is much older; the earliest source located is Ray Cummings' 1921 short story "The Time Professor", which includes the passage https://books.google.com/books?id=sXpDAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA371#v=onepage&q=%22time%20is%20what%20keeps%20everything%20from%20happening%20at%20once%22&f=false: '"I do know what time is," Tubby declared. He paused. "Time," he added slowly -- "time is what keeps everything from happening at once ...".' Cummings repeated the quote in his 1922 science fiction novel The Girl in the Golden Atom, available on Project Gutenberg here http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/21094 (according to Science-Fiction: The Early Years by Everett F. Bleiler, p. 171 http://books.google.com/books?id=KEZxhkG5eikC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA171#v=onepage&q&f=false, the novel was a composite of two earlier stories published in 1919 and 1920). Chapter V http://www.gutenberg.org/files/21094/21094-h/21094-h.htm#CHAPTER_V contains the following paragraph: The Big Business Man smiled. "Time," he said, "is what keeps everything from happening at once." The next-earliest source found for this quote is another book by Ray Cummings, The Man Who Mastered Time http://books.google.com/books?id=YdZEAAAAYAAJ&q=%22everything+from+happening+at+once%22#search_anchor from 1929, and no published examples of the quote from authors other than Cummings can be found until the 1962 Film Facts: Volume 5 where it appears on p. 48 http://books.google.com/books?id=sr0vAQAAIAAJ&q=%22everything+from+happening+at+once%22#search_anchor. So, it seems likely that Ray Cummings is the real originator of this saying.

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„Time has been called God's way of making sure that everything doesn't happen at once. In the same spirit, noise is Nature's way of making sure that we don't find out everything that happens. Noise, in short, is the protector of information.“

—  Hans Christian von Baeyer American physicist 1938
Chapter 14, Noise, Nuisance and necessity, p. 127-128 von Baeyer did not originate the quip about time, which dates back at least as far as the 1929 book "The Man Who Mastered Time" by Ray Cummings, where it appears on p. 1 http://books.google.com/books?id=YdZEAAAAYAAJ&q=%22everything+from+happening+at+once%22#search_anchor.

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„Everything that happened, good or bad, would subtract something from the lessening store of useful energy, till a time arrived when nothing could happen any more, and the universe, frozen into eternal repose, would for ever be as if it were not.“

—  Arthur James Balfour British Conservative politician and statesman 1848 - 1930
Context: Everything that happened, good or bad, would subtract something from the lessening store of useful energy, till a time arrived when nothing could happen any more, and the universe, frozen into eternal repose, would for ever be as if it were not. /.../ The physical course of nature does not merely fail to indicate design, it seems loudly to proclaim its absence.

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