Thoreau's Life: The Benefits Of Transcendentalism

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Currently Members of civilization live in a time where the knowledge of the world is right at our fingertips.With a ten second google search humans can learn how fast a cheetah is or, how to ask a question in a foreign language. It is amazing what humans are capable of. However, its important for us to not become consumed in this knowledge and recognize the simplicities in life. In the mid 1800’s, a man named Ralph Waldo Emerson published his theory on life referred to as Transcendentalism. Transcendentalism is a system of philosophy that emphasizes intuition as means to knowledge, or the importance of the search for the divine. It is important for all human beings to embrace the ideas of Transcendentalism, by simplifying their life, connecting…show more content…
Emerson preaches “Simplicity, Simplicity, Simplicity”(211). Simplicity is a key idea in the Transcendentalism lifestyle. Although humans can benefit from the palm sized technology that surrounds are life, Emerson would argue we are better off without them. Although Thoreau and Emerson took simplicity to the extreme,there are still many practical ways to simplify one's life. Thoreau’s faith in simplicities is shown when he says, “I doubt the true near neighborhood of man was not essential to a serene and healthy life” (211.) Thoreau is pointing out that surrounding ourselves with people is not required to live a happy and peaceful life. In contrast to today, where people are constantly connected to their friends and would not freely choose to be alone. The main way 21st century living beings can embrace simplicity is by becoming more self reliant. By replacing Siri with our own brain we may find clarity in our own knowledge. Emerson and Thoreau both believe in learning without…show more content…
Often times people of the world notice the constant draw to technological devices. Although, not many can say that they have not fallen to this epidemic ,all can admit that there are pros and cons to technologys uses. Emerson states “In the woods we return to reason and faith”(364.) Connecting with nature is arguably the most important aspect of Transcendentalism. In the previous quote emerson is pointing out that humans are at their best when surrounded by the simplicities of our earth. He states that when we place ourselves with in nature our minds are in an exceptional state for learning and connecting with the divine. Both Emerson and Thoreau spent lengthy amounts of time connecting with nature. Although spending 2 years of almost complete solitude in Nature is a little unrealistic for most people, there are many ways to connect with nature on a smaller level. In the movie Into the Wild, the main character Chris searches for the same connection to nature that is discussed in both Emerson and Thoreau's writings. The idea of connecting with the divine motivated Chris, Emerson and Thoreau to spent these extensive period of time in nature. The main benefits to spending time in nature are connecting with the divine, and having more sublime

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