Thoreau’s Philosophy and Thoughts on Life

Thoreau’s Philosophy and Thoughts on Life

Document details
Category: Philosophy Essay
Subcategory: Ancient Greek and Roman Philosophy
Words: 644
Pages: 1

Thoreaus statement on the Classics In the novel Walden, Henry David Thoreau states that the classics are the noblest recorded thoughts of man. He also believed that the written word is the work of art nearest to life itself. Walden fits this description through many elements in the novel including relevance, universality, and beauty. The novel is a collection of essays Thoreau wrote commenting on his experiment of living in the woods for two years. He lived in a hut off the shore of Walden Pond in Massachusetts between 1845 and 1847. The essays include his encounters with people, animals, and nature along with his philosophies on different subjects. Though many people do not care for Thoreaus ideas, there is still significance in his work even for the twenty-first century. Escaping technology and moving into a hut is not a simple task for the average American today, however Thoreaus philosophies can still be applied to this century. He believes that you must love your life because that is the only way you will be happy. In his conclusion, Thoreau states, Love your life, poor as it is. You may perhaps have some pleasant, thrilling, glorious hours, even in a poor-house.(chapter 18, p217-218) That applies to the people of today as much as the people of the 1800s and will apply to people in the future as well. Thoreau feels that everyone needs to find themselves and figure out what they want out of life. Thoreau clearly expresses that not everyone should live in the woods as he had done. He attempts to reach everyone on his or her own level which gives the novel universal appeal. He encourages his readers to undertake experiments on their own. There are general comments on life throughout the novel, which can be interpreted by each individual in their own way. Many of his ideas are broad and are not meant to be taken literally. Thoreau states that,...

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