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"The SF approach: an awareness that things could have been different, that this is one of many possible worlds, that if you came to this world from some other planet, this would be a science fiction world."
- Neal Stephenson

Paralyzing Ray  
  Stops body motions.  

Very early reference to the idea.

...he did not dare fire at me. Miko had forbidden it. I saw him reach under his robe, doubtless for a low-powered paralyzing ray. But he never got it out...
From Brigands of the Moon, by Ray Cummings.
Published by Astounding Stories of Super Science in 1930
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