"Looking back through history, I see no evidence for humanity making the best of things, and I think it's a pretty safe bet that's an on-going trend."
This is a very early instance of this term in sf; possibly a first reference.
The notion of a separate world, or plane of existence, or realm, has existed in the human imagination from time immemorial. The classical Greeks used the ideas of Mount Olympus and Hades' underworld as different realms that existed along with our own; the ancient Hindus used the idea of a multiplicity of realms called "lokas".
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