The Horror in Clay

“Ofsuchgreatpowersorbeingstheremaybeconceivablyasurvival...asurvivalofahugelyremoteperiodwhen...consciousnesswasmanifested,perhaps,inshapesandformslongsincewithdrawnbeforethetideofadvancinghumanity...formsofwhichpoetryandlegendalonehavecaughtaflyingmemoryandcalledthemgods,monsters,mythicalbeingsofallsortsandkinds...”

AlgernonBlackwood

Themostmercifulthingintheworld,Ithink,istheinabilityofthehumanmindtocorrelateallitscontents.Weliveonaplacidislandofignoranceinthemidstofblackseasofinfinity,anditwasnotmeantthatweshouldvoyagefar.Thesciences,eachstraininginitsowndirection,havehithertoharmeduslittle;butsomedaythepiecingtogetherofdissociatedknowledgewillopenupsuchterrifyingvistasofreality,andofourfrightfulpositiontherein,thatweshalleithergomadfromtherevelationorfleefromthedeadlylightintothepeaceandsafetyofanewdarkage.

Theosophistshaveguessedattheawesomegrandeurofthecosmiccyclewhereinourworldandhumanraceformtransientincidents.Theyhavehintedatstrangesurvivalsintermswhichwouldfreezethebloodifnotmaskedbyablandoptimism.ButitisnotfromthemthattherecamethesingleglimpseofforbiddenaeonswhichchillsmewhenIthinkofitandmaddensmewhenIdreamofit.Thatglimpse,likealldreadglimpsesoftruth,flashedoutfromanaccidentalpiecingtogetherofseparatedthingsinthiscaseanoldnewspaperitemandthenotesofadeadprofessor.Ihopethatnooneelsewillaccomplishthispiecingout;certainly,ifIlive,Ishallneverknowinglysupplyalinkinsohideousachain.

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