Transcendentalism encompasses the idea that spiritual growth can be achieved through a rigorous personal journey as apposed to organized religion, and both authors express their ideas on religion a little bit differently. Emerson believed that nature was the purest physical form of the divine, and that an individual could develop a better personal relationship with God through time spent one on one in nature. In “Nature”, one of the author’s most famous works, Emerson expresses his ideas in imagery-filled sentences. For example, “In the woods, we return to reason and faith. There I feel that nothing can befall me in life, -no disgrace, no calamity, (leaving me my eyes,) which nature cannot repair” (488). Emerson whole-heartedly believed that nature was potentially the answer to nearly every one of life’s riddles and that once a person was completely connected to nature, only then could they achieve total inner peace. The authors of the article, “Ralph Waldo Emerson” try to simplify Emerson’s beliefs with statements such...
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.... Shorter 6th Ed. Nina Baym. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2003. 488. Print.
Hodder, Alan D. "The Gospel According To This Moment: Thoreau, Wildness, And American Nature Religion." Religion & The Arts 15.4 (2011): 460-485. Humanities International Complete. Web. 13 Dec. 2013.
Nabers, Deak. "Thoreau's Natural Constitution." American Literary History 19.4 (2007): 824-848. Humanities International Complete. Web. 13 Dec. 2013.
Rolston III, Holmes, et al. "Ralph Waldo Emerson 1803-82." Fifty Key Thinkers On The Environment (2000): 93-100. Environment Complete. Web. 13 Dec. 2013.
Thoreau, Henry David. "Walden." The Norton Anthology of American Literature. Shorter 6th Ed. Nina Baym. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2003. 856-937. Print.
Turner, Jack. "Emerson, Slavery, And Citizenship." Raritan 28.2 (2008): 127-146. Humanities International Complete. Web. 13 Dec. 2013.
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