"I love Sufism as I love beautiful poetry, but it is not the answer. Sufism is like a mirage in the desert. It says to you, come and sit, relax and enjoy yourself for a while."
"All bad poetry springs from genuine feeling."Naguib Mahfouz on Oscar Wilde
"A poet can survive everything but a misprint."Naguib Mahfouz on Oscar Wilde
"Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion, but an escape from emotion it is not the expression of personality, but an escape from personality. But, of course, only those who have personality and emotions know what it means to want to escape from these things."Naguib Mahfouz on T. S. Eliot
"Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words."Naguib Mahfouz on Robert Frost
"A poem begins as a lump in the throat, a sense of wrong, a homesickness, a lovesickness."Naguib Mahfouz on Robert Frost
"At my age it is unseemly to be pessimistic."
"We are like a woman with a difficult pregnancy. We have to rebuild the social classes in Egypt, and we must change the way things were."
"As the tension eases, we must look in the direction of agriculture, industry and education as our final goals, and toward democracy under Mr Mubarak."
"I defend both the freedom of expression and society's right to counter it. I must pay the price for differing. It is the natural way of things."
"God did not intend religion to be an exercise club."