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Thoreaus Where Lived And What Lived For Philosophy Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Philosophy
Wordcount: 1010 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Take a moment and think for a few seconds, what you have done for your typical day. The majority of us would says, we normally rush through our typical daily tasks, or what not, trying to get those accomplished one by one, as much as we could, in a given time. Tasks may differ in each person of different ages, positions, classes or even lifestyles. But those things give us one common thing, a nature of what we called, “the chaotic “. Then, at the end of the day, we are exhausted with stress from chaos and routines of the day. Very often, we don’t have time, or perhaps with lack of willingness, to spend time with our love ones and do things we are passionate about. In the essay “Where I lived and what I lived for,” Henry David Thoreau’s [1817-1862] expression appeals me of the importance and value of living the simple life nature affords, that I believe, it is as necessary now as it was back in his time. I support Thoreau’s philosophy and idea of living a simpler life, where one can enjoy each and every activity, where one is content rather than rushing to finish his or her daily chaos.

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I found Thoreau’s writing style is complex and hard to understand throughout in that essay. It has at least 3 to 4 commas in each sentence, which makes me harder to follow all the way though. It seems like Thoreau put his sentences with as much information and words as he could till, as if, they were overflowing from the page. But after a few times repeat reading that, I think I was able to take hold of the basic argument he is trying to make.

I discovered Thoreau’s “Where I lived and what I lived for” made a very compelling argument for his going to live in the woods. Many examples have supported his beliefs in that essay. The essay opens with Thoreau seemly stating his purpose for moving to a cabin on Walden Pond. He is claiming the woods to be a supercilious place to live close to life. Throughout his essay, he simplified life to as small possible form as he could. I consent with his argument about simplifying life and cut off those are not essential and the routines that we having in our daily life. Thoreau moves to the woods so as to “drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms,” and the fact that he “wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life,” (“Natural acts” 33). Perhaps, even in this recession period, some point every year isolate ourselves and relieve from all the stress we have been carried throughout the year and make our life simpler surrounded by nature. But it might only works for those who make the time and have the time, for others, they might not be able to dream about it.

His respect to the nature and desire of living simplicity as nature is almost religious and “glorify God and enjoy him forever” (‘Natural acts’ 33). Although disagreed as to whether the world as made by God or the devil, Thoreau has uncertainty about it, he wants to live his life as intensely as possible. “Let us spend one day as deliberately as Nature…” Thoreau’s interpretation toward nature is with admiration, adoration and value (33). But it is only the way he sees the nature, not everyone could agree with him, not even the writers who compose about the nature could.

Joyce Carol Oates’s [b. 1938] expression, in her essay “Against Nature”(‘Natural Acts’ 42), toward the nature “the subject is there only by the grace of the author’s language” makes suggests that we do not need to rely on our senses but we only rely on language for our understanding of our surroundings (45). If on all sides of her was “random, wayward, nameless motion,” she would not even know herself that: We all are the product of the Mother Nature. Meaninglessness cannot produce the meaning itself. Her belief that “Nature is mouth, or may be a single mouth” ignores the privileges of birth and the existence of the death (46). The two authors has the same vision on that, Thoreau also state that “when I came to die, discover that I had not lived”. None the less, I found that they both have a deep philosophical concern about the meaning of life in their essays.

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Thoreau is pretty much correct in the sense that he makes us out to be robotic go about our day in a tedious way. Mostly, we all have our own routines that we have been followed through big part of our life that we hate to change. Throughout the reading on his essay, the only one thing I don’t completely understand was about the train, sleepers and people that line the track, or buried under the track “if some have the pleasure of riding on a rail, others have the misfortune to be ridden upon”. My best knowledge to understand that is, at the time period he was written this(1854), he means the people who were wealthy enough to ride on the new trains on the new tracks that are traveling all over the country, and the people who can’t afford it, had to build the rail tracks for their living. But I don’t know the relationship between this and the simplifying our lives, so maybe I still don’t understand what he is trying to say.

In conclusion, the description of Thoreau’s search for eternal truth is perhaps his finest poetry. Life means not just a physical functioning but also eternal fulfillment inside. “Where I lived and what I lived for” portray nature as the simple way of life. Henry David Thoreau has a main goal, to reverse the blindness of humanity to nature. People day to day strive for obtaining the most wealth, the most foods, the most of everything. Many of us found that, as we grew older, it is not essentially more money or the fame, or the power that make our lives happier. Oftentimes it is the simple things we can do in our lives that lead to achieve the great happiness in life.


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