"I am not an educated man except that I have educated myself, and, because I have educated myself, what I say will not stand up, for lacking recognized authority. This in turn leaves me free to say what I will, in the hope that, like those small forces that do not threaten empires and are thus not fully pursued, the things in which I believe can survive in some high and forgotten place until the power of empire subsides.
And although I know that few will listen to or credit this, I think we are in a lost age, in which holiness and charity have been traded for the victory and penetration of knowledge, though all the knowledge in the world has not brought us any further than where we can go without it even in the outermost halls of grace. I believe that more is to be known and apprehended from the beauty of a face than in delving, no matter how deep, simply into how things work, no matter how marvelous they may be. The greatest substance in the world is immaterial, the province of the heart, and its study cannot be forced or reasoned. Merely to touch upon the edge of thing in parsing their mechanics is to forswear their fullness, for the entry to this fullness lies not in science but in art. I cannot prove this, for it cannot be proven, but I claim, assert, and have seen it."
- "Il Colore Ritrovato" by Mark Helprin