The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown.
The sole ultimate factor in human decisions is physical force. This we must learn, however repugnant the idea may seem, if we are to protect ourselves and our institutions. Reliance on anything else is fallacious and ruinous.
Very few minds are strictly normal, and all religious fanatics are marked with abnormalities of various sorts.
Imagination is a very potent thing, and in the uneducated often usurps the place of genuine experience.
Searchers after horror haunt strange, far places.
One can never produce anything as terrible and impressive as one can awesomely hint about.
We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far.
What a man does for pay is of little significance. What he is, as a sensitive instrument responsive to the world's beauty, is everything!
From my experience, I cannot doubt but that man, when lost to terrestrial consciousness, is indeed sojourning in another and uncorporeal life of far different nature from the life we know; and of which only the slightest and most indistinct memories linger after waking.
But more wonderful than the lore of old men and the lore of books is the secret lore of ocean.
There are not many persons who know what wonders are opened to them in the stories and visions of their youth; for when as children we listen and dream, we think but half-formed thoughts, and when as men we try to remember, we are dulled and prosaic with the poison of life.
I could not write about 'ordinary people' because I am not in the least interested in them.
But are not the dreams of poets and the tales of travellers notoriously false?
All of my tales are based on the fundamental premise that common human laws and emotions have no validity or significance in the cosmos-at-large.
I do not think that any realism is beautiful.
Unhappy is he to whom the memories of childhood bring only fear and sadness.
I am well-nigh resolv'd to write no more tales but merely to dream when I have a mind to, not stopping to do anything so vulgar as to set down the dream for a boarish Publick.
Toil without song is like a weary journey without an end.