500+ Sourced quotes
Father monks, why do you fast! Why do you expect reward in heaven for that?...No, saintly monk, you try being virtuous in the world, do good to society, without shutting yourself up in a monastery at other people's expense, and without expecting a reward up aloft for it—you'll find that a bit harder.
So far I have accounted for the phenomena presented to us by the heavens and the sea by means of the force of gravity, but I have as yet assigned no cause to this gravity... I have not been able to deduce from phenomena the raison d'être of the properties of gravity and I have not set up hypotheses.
... if any man could arrive at the exterior limit, or take the wings of a bird and fly upward, like a fish who puts his head out and sees the world, he would see a world beyond; and, if the nature of man could sustain this sight, he would acknowledge that this was the place of the true heaven and the true light and the true stars. For this earth, and the stones, and the entire region which surrounds us, are spoilt and corroded...
You will next read the new testament. It is the history of a personage called Jesus. Keep in your eye the opposite pretensions 1. of those who say he was begotten by God, born of a virgin, suspended & reversed the laws of nature at will, & ascended bodily into heaven: and 2. of those who say he was a man of illegitimate birth, of a benevolent heart, enthusiastic mind, who set out without pretensions to divinity, ended in believing them, & was Punished capitally for sedition by being gibbeted according to the Roman law which punished the first commission of that offence by whipping, & the second by exile or death in furcâ.
By the grey woods, by the swamp, where the toad and newt encamp, by the dismal tarns and pools, where dwell the Gouls. By each spot the most unholy, by each nook most melancholy, there the traveller meets, aghast, sheeted memories of the Past. Shrouded forms that start and sigh, as they pass the wanderer by. White-robed forms of friends long given; In agony, to the Earth - and Heaven.