"Concerning freedom and liberty: I don’t suppose that anybody ever said that man had 'complete' freedom. Terms are always relative — except when somebody takes refuge in philosophical completeness, if I may use a vague term. Naturally, man has always been bound by certain natural limitations, as he always will be. What is freedom for one man is not necessarily freedom for another.
The trouble is, as I pointed out awhile back — each man is likely to consider himself capable of determining just which amount of freedom, and what kind of freedom, is good for his neighbor. All men being subject to natural limitations, it is easy enough to take the philosophical stand that freedom is an illusion and never existed. By that means of argument you can prove the same of anything — including Art. Arguing from that standpoint, the writer who works five or six hours a day, or at least directs his work as he wishes, and toils at a congenial task, is as much a slave as a farm-hand pushing a plough through rocky ground from sunup to sundown. However, if it were suggested that these philosophers abandon their professions to gaze on a mule’s tail from dawn to dusk, a howl would go up that would shake the stars in their firmament. And if these persons were forced to work with their hands — or with their heads at some uncongenial task — for sixteen hours a day, they would speak most bitterly of serfdom and oppression, as if indeed, freedom and its lack did exist except in the minds of such romantic emotionalists as myself. Like most philosophical sophistry, it falls down when put to a material test. As for what constitutes real value in life, that is merely a matter of opinion, and however much one may feel that his particular values are the ones of real worth, he can not, or should not, expect people living under different conditions and in different environments, with different ways of thinking, to accept his standards without question."
-- Robert E. Howard to H. P. Lovecraft, Sep/Oct 1933
"I am indeed sorry to learn of the deaths in your family. Death to the old is inevitable, and yet somehow I often feel that it is a greater tragedy than death to the young. When a man dies young he misses much suffering, but the old have only life as a possession and somehow to me the tearing of a pitiful remnant from weak old fingers is more tragic than the looting of a life in its full rich prime. I don’t want to live to be old. I want to die when my time comes, quickly and suddenly, in the full tide of my strength and health."
"To hell with the psychologists and city-bred psychoanalysts and all the other freaks spawned by our rotting civilization. They’ve lived between concrete and shingles so long they’ve forgot their origin. They ought to get out before sun-up and walk through the grass barefooted some morning, just for an unfamiliar experience. I once wrote a rhyme in which I tried to express my resentment:
You have built a world of paper and wood, Culture and cult and lies; Has the cobra altered beneath his hood, Or the fire in the tiger’s eyes?
You have turned from valley and hill and flood, You have set yourselves apart, Forgetting the earth that feeds the blood And the talon that finds the heart.
You boast you have stilled the lustful call Of the black ancestral ape, But Life, the tigress that bore you all, Has never changed her shape.
And a strange shape comes to your faery mead, With a fixed black simian frown, But you will not know and you will not heed Till your towers come tumbling down.
I’ve forgotten the rest of it, which is doubtless as well."
"My tastes and habits are simple; I am neither erudite nor sophisticated. I prefer jazz to classical music, musical burlesques to Greek tragedy, A. Conan Doyle to Balzac, Bob Service’s verse to Santayana’s writing, a prize fight to a lecture on art. I read the wood pulp magazines and enjoy them. I laugh uproariously at slap stick comedy in the movies. I respect men’s religion whether I believe in it or not. I am a 100% American and damned proud of it."
"To hell with the psychologists and city-bred psychoanalysts and all the other freaks spawned by our rotting civilization. ..."
-- Robert E. Howard to August Derleth, 9 May 1936
That's... Funny. Considering how psychoanalysis is exactly the filed which strives to show by scientific means that humans are not that advanced as humans like to believe, and that sexuality, drive to kill, and everything else down that road which is considered to be 'base impulses', 'lower nature', etc., is still central to each human. Civilization is but a mask for psychoanalysis. When one reads Freud's Civilization and Its Discontents one finds oneself in REH's neighborhood, so to speak, in many important ways...
"From the time when the earth was too hot to support human life to the time when it will be too cold, will be a mere instant in the earth’s history, compared to the millions of years before and the millions of years after man’s complete disappearance from its face. Man is an elemental being, bound by the same basic and fundamental rules which bind all elements. He is cursed with a consciousness of Life, a blessing which is a curse, as are all such blessings. He realizes his inability to control his own destiny and he rebels. He demands a special creative act, a kinship to Deity, a life and an afterlife entirely different from the rest of earth’s creatures. He rants and he roars, he boasts and he shouts, but after all, after all his self glorifying, he dies and the chemicals in his body disintegrates back to the elements which produce him."