Selected Writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson MOBI ´ of

Selected Writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson ➳ [Reading] ➶ Selected Writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson By Ralph Waldo Emerson ➩ – 'Standing on the bare ground my head bathed by the blithe air and uplifted into infinite space all mean egotism vanishes' Emerson wrote in Nature his statement of the principles of transcendentalism ' 'Standing on the bare of Ralph MOBI ô ground my head bathed by the blithe air and uplifted into infinite space all mean egotism vanishes' Emerson wrote in Nature his statement of the principles of transcendentalism 'I become a transparent eyeball' Nature published in when Emerson was thirty three is collected here with his book of observations on the English people; a famous sermon against administering communion in church; a sketch of his step grandfather; the eulogy he delivered at the funeral of his Selected Writings ePUB í Concord friend and neighbor Henry David Thoreau; twenty three poems; and addresses lectures and essays on such subjects as slavery self reliance and organized Christianity's obsession with the person of Jesus Emerson called transcendentalism another word for idealism 'hypothesis to account for nature by other principles than those of carpentry and chemistry' Considered intensely radical at a time when materialism and a rigid form of Christianity were ascendant he urged Americans to 'enjoy an original relation to the universe' These selections span Writings of Ralph eBook ´ Emerson's career as author and traveling lecturer and chart his evolving thought the concepts of the 'over soul' individualism without egotism and antimaterialism; a belief in intuition independence and 'the splendid labyrinth of one's own perceptions'.

10 thoughts on “Selected Writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson

  1. Roy Lotz Roy Lotz says:

    People do not deserve to have good writing they are so pleased with bad I expect most people read Emerson in college which I suppose is the perfect time to do so The man seems constantly to be speaking to the young wide eyed enthusiastic hopeful liberal arts major in me There’s just something wonderfully youthful about Emerson’s attitude; he never grew out of that adolescent feeling of omnipotence that we can all recreate the world if we are just authentically ourselves This sounds crass and cliché when I say it but when Emerson says it it’s fresh “To believe your own thought to believe that what is true for you in your private heart is true for all men—that is genius” Emerson was a sprinter not a long distance runner He seemed to have a limitless supply of epigrams which he sprinkled like a verbal Johnny Appleseed throughout his writings And yet the whole is less than the sum of its parts Emerson’s essays don’t coalesce into a work; they remain a jangly collection of disparate elements like keys on a keychain He often threatens to soar off into philosophic profundity and the threat always proves empty We hear a crash and a boom; yet the echo uickly fades Really he’s of a prose poet than a thinker He hints at thoughts using pretty words but he has no system he employs no arguments His work is the embodiment of a personality and an attitude Although I didn’t expect it the best part of this collection were the selections from his journals You are immediately pulled into his mind made a spectator on his life and private thoughts The only comparable reading experience I’ve had was Montaigne’s Essays And indeed Emerson admired Montaigne very much even writing a laudatory essay on the old French sage Emerson's description of Montaigne's prose is apt for both writers “Cut these words and they would bleed; they are vascular and alive” His essays comprise the bulk of this collection which were generally enjoyable but less thrilling In these Emerson is typically long winded disorganized and excitable Most of the essays seem as though they lack a plan or an argument But folded into this formless fabric were golden threads which served to brighten the motley uilt; and just when you tire of the man he includes a bit of writing as breathtaking as any you’ve ever readDream delivers us to dream and there is no end to illusion Life is a train of moods like a string of beads and as we pass through them they prove to be many colored lenses which paint the world their own hue and each shows only what lies in its focusI didn’t find any of his poetry particularly compelling save “The Rhodora” which was lovely I don’t think he was precise and exacting enough for meter Besides Emerson endears because of his artlessness his frankness; so when he sueezes himself into verse he looks like a man wearing a shirt a few sizes too small Despite all of Emerson’s flaws as a writer I still enjoyed every minute I spent with him For Emerson lived up to his own mantra and followed the bent of his own mind All of his writings are absolutely honest; he is speaking to you as an eual and a friend For my part I often found myself wishing I possessed a fraction his self assuredness his absolute comfort with himself The man knew himself and thus never spent time imitating others or worrying about what anyone thought of him Perhaps if I’m lucky some of that might have rubbed off on me These old dusty classics have got to be good for something right?

  2. Dollie Dollie says:

    After reading Emerson’s name in three different places in one week I decided I should probably finally read him and see why people seem to like him so much Well I read his journal his essays and his poems and I can tell you I liked nothing about any of them The only thing I liked was that he didn’t give a hoot what anyone thought of him I found his journal depressing his essays full of God and you couldn’t count on his poems to rhyme I did like the poem Waldeinsamkeit but didn’t care for Threnody Ugh Who wants to read a poem about a little boy’s death? NOT me So to each his own I’ve read as much of Ralph Waldo Emerson as I ever want to The next time I want classic poetry I’ll read Henry Wadsworth Longfellow who I thoroughly enjoy

  3. Revanth Ukkalam Revanth Ukkalam says:

    Perhaps this is what transcendentalism is a love for freedom beauty and love The writings are wide and each is short The titles are often minimalist fate circles just like the old masters Bacon and Montaigne who Emerson showers with praise Emerson also exchanges appreciation with his fellow thinker Thoreau But thinker is the wrong word Emerson is a poet and one who stopped growing in his early twenties He jumps from one idea to another Reading him is like staying forever young while the world ages and grows evil fangs at the same time

  4. Catherine Catherine says:

    This was pretty good but it was a little bit like being in a hallmark store About every third paragraph an aphorism jumps out and tries to make me buy an inspirational coffee cup Hallmark should include the subversive context on their calendars

  5. Don Stanton Don Stanton says:

    Pretty much a mood read for me Philosophical renderings on self reliance and dependence at the lowest level the individual A good choice for reading for long stretches of uninterrupted time

  6. Nick Nick says:

    The book's in two parts Journals and Letters and Essays and Addresses I've only read the first part so far but intend to return the second somedayAnyway I enjoyed the first part Many of the entries are fairly short and I couldn't help but think about twitterblogschokengtitiktitikchokeng 41 Satisfaction with our lot is not consistent with the intentions of God with our nature It is our duty to aim at change at improvement at perfection It is our duty to be discontented with the measure we have of knowledge of virtue to forget the things behind press toward those before45 The religion that is afraid of science dishonours God commits suicide It acknowledges that it is not eual to the whole of truth that it legislates tyrannizes over a village of God's empire but is not the immutable universal law Every influx of atheism of skepticism is thus made useful as a mercury pill assaulting removing a diseased religion making way for truth itself is presently purged into the draught46 The effect of a fanciful word misplaced is like that of a horn of exuisite polish growing on a human head47 It is the best part of the man I sometimes think that revolts most against his being the minister His good revolts from official goodness If he never spoke or acted but with the full consent of his understanding if the whole man acted always how powerful would be every act every word Well then or ill then how much power he sacrifices by conforming himself to say do in other folks' time instead of in his own The difficulty is that we do not make a world of our own but fall into institutions already made have to accommodate ourselves to them to be useful at all52 But every true man stands on the top of the world He has a majestic understanding which is in its right place the servant of the reason employed ever to bridge over the gulf between the revelations of his Reason his Vision the facts within in the microscopic optics of the calculators that surround him Long may he live Henceforth I design not to utter any speech poem or book that is not entirely peculiarly my work I will say at Public Lectures the like those things which I have meditated for their own sake not for the first time with a view to that occasion If otherwise you select a new subject labor to make a good appearance on the appointed day it is so much lost time to you lost time to your hearer It is a parenthesis in your genuine life You are your own dupe for the sake of conciliating your audience you have failed to edify them winning their ear you have really lost their love gratitude53 The age of puberty is a crisis in the life of a man worth studying It is the passage from the Unconscious to the Conscious; from the sleep of the Passions to their rage; from careless receiving to cunning providing; from beauty to use; from omnivorous curiosity to anxious stewardship; from faith to doubt; from maternal Reason to hard short sighted Understanding; from Unity to disunion; the progressive influences of poetry elouence love regeneration character truth sorrow and of search for an Aim the contest for Property55 No man ever grew so learned as to exhaust the significance of any part of nature Nature never became a toy to a wise spirit The flowers the animals the mountains reflected all the wisdom of his best hour as much as they had delighted the simplicity of his childhood63 4 A very good discourse on Marriage might be written by him who would preach the nature of things Let him teach how fast the frivolous external fancying fades out of the mind Let him teach both husband wife to mourn for the rapid ebb of inclination not one moment to yield it no tear As this fancy picture these fata Morgana this cloud scenery fades forever the solid mountain chains whereupon the sky rests in the far perspective of the soul begin to appear The parties discover every day the deep permanent character each of the other as a rock foundation on which they may safely build their nuptial bower They learn slowly that all other affect than that which rests upon what they are is superstitious evanescent that all concealment all pretension is wholly vain that to the amiable useful heroic ualities which inhere in the other belong a certain portion of love of pleasure of veneration which is exactly measured as the attraction of a pound of iron that there is no luck nor witchcraft nor destiny nor divinity in marriage that can produce affection but only those ualities that by their nature extort it that all love is mathematical79 Housekeeping If my garden had only made me acuainted with the muckworm the bugs the grasses the swamp of plenty in August I should willingly pay a free tuition But every process is lucrative to me far beyond its economy For the like reason keep house Whoso does opens a shop in the heart of all trades professions arts so that upon him these shall all play By keeping house I go to a universal school where all knowledges are taught me the price of tuition is my annual expense84 Education We all are involved in the condemnation of words an Age of words We are shut up in schools college recitation rooms for ten or fifteen years come out at least with a bellyfull of words do not know a thing85 The mob are always interesting We hate editors preachers all manner of scholars and fashionists A blacksmith a truckman a farmer we follow into the barroom watch with eagerness what they shall say for such as the do not speak because they are expected to but because they have somewhat to say86 Do something it matters little or not at all whether it be in the way of what you call your profession or not so it be in the plane or coincident with the axis of your character The reaction is always proportioned to the action and it is the reaction that we want Strike the hardest blow you can you can always do this by work which is agreeable to your nature This is economy99 What a pity that we cannot curse swear in good society Cannot the stinging dialect of the Sailors be domesticated? It is the best rhetoric and for a hundred occasions those forbidden words are the only good ones102 Each soul is a soul or an individual in virtue of its having or I may say being a power to translate the universe into some particular language of its own; if not into a picture a statue or a dance why then into a trade or an art of a science or a mode of living or a conversation or a character or an influence into something great human adeuate which if it do not contain in itself all the dancing painting poetry that ever was it is because the man is faint hearted untrue116 do I never I think fear death It seems to me so often a relief a rendering up of responsibility a uittance of so many vexatious trifles It is greatest to believe to hope well of the world because he who does so uits the world of experience makes the world he lives in120 Be an opener of doors for such as come after thee and do not try to make the Universe a blind alley126 I am shamed in reflecting on the little new skill the years bring me at the power trifles have over me at the importance of my dinner my dress my house than at the slenderness of my acuisitions127 The elouent man is he who is no beautiful speaker but who is inwardly desperately drunk with a certain belief; it agitates tears him almost bereaves him of the power of articulation Then it rushes from him as in short abrupt screams in torrents of meaning The possession by the subject of his mind is so entire that it ensures an order of expression which is the order of nature itself and so the order of greatest force inimitable by any art And the main distinction between him other well graced actors is the conviction communicated to the hearer by every word that his mind is contemplating a whole and inflamed with the contemplation of the whole that the words sentences uttered by him however admirable fall from him as unregarded parts of that terrible whole which he sees means that you should see128 The which the soul seeks is resolution into Being above form out of Tartarus out of Heaven; liberation from existence is its name130 Life is the sleep of the soul as soon as a soul is tired it looks out for a body as a bed; enters into a body in the season of dentition sleeps seventy years I see not how we can live except alone Trenchant manners a sharp decided way will prove a lasting convenience Society will coo claw caress You must curse swear a little they will remember it it will do them good What if they are wise fine people? I do not want your silliness though you be Socrates and if you indulge them all people are babyish Curse them132 Teachers The teacher should be the complement of the pupil; now for the most part they are earth's diameters wide of each other A college professor should be elected by setting all the candidates loose on a miscellaneous gang of young men taken at large from the street He who could get the ear of these youths after a certain number of hours or of the greatest number of these youths should be professor Let him see if he could interest these rowdy boys in the meaning of a list of words134 The artist must be sacrificed The child had her basket full of berries but she looked sadly tired The scholar is pale Schiller shuns to learn French that he may keep the purity of his German idiom Herschel must live in the observatory draw on his night cap when the sun rises defend his eyes for nocturnal use Michael Angelo must paint Sistine Chapels till he can no longer read except by holding the book over his head Nature deals with all her offspring so See the poor moths flies lately so vigorous now on the wall or the trunk of the tree exhausted dried up presently blown away Men likewise They must put their lives into the sting they give What is a man good for without enthusiasm? What is enthusiasm but this daring of ruin for its object? There are thoughts beyond the reaches of our souls; we are not the less drawn to them The moth flies into the flame of the lamp Swedborg must solve the problem though he be crazed killed Patriotism is balderdash Our side our state our town is boyish enough But it is true that every foot of soil has its proper uality that the grape on either side of the same fence has its own flavor and so every acre on the globe every group of people every point of climate has its own moral meaning whereof it is the symbol For such a patriotism let us stand137 A curious example of the rudeness and inaccuracy of thought is the inability to distinguish between the private the universal consciousness I never make that blunder when I write but the critics who read impute their confusion to me157 If Government knew how I should like to see it check not multiply the population When it reaches the true law of its action every man that is born will be hailed as essential161 The lesson of these days is the vulgarity of wealth We know that wealth will vote for the same thing which the worst meanest of the people vote for Wealth will vote for rum will vote for tyranny will vote for slavery will vote against the ballot will vote against international copyright will vote against schools colleges or any high direction of public money162 Fortune Hope I've made my port Farewell ye twin deceivers; Ah many a times I've been your sport; Go cozen new believers164 A scholar is a man with this inconvenience that when you ask him his opinion of any matter he must go home look up his manuscripts to know166 and he is no master who cannot vary his forms carry his own end triumphantly through the most difficult168 9 Because our education is defective because we are superficial ill read we were forced to make the most of that position of ignorance; to idealize ignorance Hence America is a vast Know Nothing party we disparage books cry up intuition With a few clever men we have made a reputable thing of that denouncing libraries severe culture magnifying the motherwit swagger of bright boys from the country colleges we have even come so far as to deceive every body except ourselves into an admiration of unlearning and inspiration forsooth174 It is impossible to extricate oneself from the uestions in which our age is involved you can no keep out of politics than out of the frost

  7. Gail Kennon Gail Kennon says:

    some of it was a bit rough going as the sentences and ideas are complex and sometimes dense but he is a good man to spend time with it's interesting to see how little we've changed over time and how corrupt politicians were always at the fore

  8. Mike Mike says:

    Nothing can bring you peace but yourself

  9. Maggie Maggie says:

    63July 21 1837Courage consists in the conviction that they with whom you co tend are no than you If we believed in the existence of strict individuals itl natures that is not radically identical but unknown immeasurable we should never dare fightThe American Scholar 69 One must be an inventor to read well 72 Character is higher than intellect78 Give me insight into today the near explains the far79 The scholar is decent indolent complaisant See already the tragic conseuence The mind of this country taught to aim at low objects eats upon itself80 We will walk on our own feet; we will work with our own hands; we will speak our own minds A nation of men will for the first time exist because each believes himself inspired by the Divine Soul which also inspires all menSelf RelianceYou are allowed to be alone to think You are allowed to resist Society in order to make individual advancements Society by nature will grow angry at you because it is contingent on you joining355Spring 1851 On returning slaves And this filthy enactment was made in the nineteenth century by people who could read and write I will not obey it by GodAugust 1852I waked at night and bemoaned myself because I had not thrown myself into this deplorable uestion of Slavery which seems to want nothing so much as a few assured voices But then in hours of sanity I recovery myself and say God must govern his own world and knows his way out of this pit without my desertion of my post which has none to guard it but me I have uite other slaves to free than those negroes to wit imprisoned spirits imprisoned thoughts far back in the brain of man far retired in the heaven of invention and which important to the republic of Man have no watchman or lover or defender but I

  10. Rick Rick says:

    I was glad to start this anthology of Emerson's writings with the journal entries the least challenging entry point It eased me into his 19th century style of writing and thought and well prepared me for the essays and lectures that followed which are the real joy and benefit of Emerson's work Emerson's view of a larger fluid universal soul that contains all is a comforting one for this secular humanist It contains the benefits of most religious beliefs without the problematic parts institutional rigmarole intolerance sometimes bloody and immoral sometimes merely comical and the arrogance of Truth founded on primitive wisdom and narrative sometimes brilliant and sometimes brutal and backward and contradictory the sin where dogma wags the tale Emerson's view allows awe encourages community provides connection respect responsibility and a persuasive ethics All of his work is rich in excerptable wisdom aphorism sayings elegant phrasings crop up everywhere There are pages where I would find myself fully adrift lost in the esoteric atmosphere and then suddenly brought to sharp attention by a passage of great clarity and wisdom or provocative thought The poetry the book's final part is the least successful though there is the shot heard round the world and a touching memorial to the son that died young Taken altogether this is the perfect introduction to this American master's life and work

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