Parsons treated magic and rocketry as different sides of the same coin: both had been disparaged, both derided as impossible, but because of this both presented themselves as challenges to be conquered. Rocketry postulated that we should no longer see ourselves as creatures chained to the earth but as beings capable of exploring the universe.
Similarly, magic suggested there were unseen metaphysical worlds that existed and could be explored with the right knowledge. Both rocketry and magic were rebellions against the very limits of human existence; in striving for one challenge he could not help but strive for the other.
George Pendle, Pendle, George (2005). Strange Angel: The Otherworldly Life of Rocket Scientist John Whiteside Parsons. p. 18.
The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution.
Bertrand Russell, as quoted in Crainer's The Ultimate Book of Business Quotations (1997), p. 258.
I never in my life
Did hear a challenge urg'd more modestly,
Unless a brother should a brother dare
To gentle exercise and proof of arms.