The Concord Writer


Thoreau's Wise Silence

by Cathryn McIntyre

The title, Thoreau's Wise Silence is inspired by these words taken from Ralph Waldo Emerson's 1841 essay called, The Over-Soul:

We live in succession, in division, in parts, in particles.  Meantime within man is the soul of the whole; the wise silence; the universal beauty, to which every part and particle is equally related;
the eternal ONE."


As with all other materials on this website, the following excerpt is copyrighted material and should not be copied or reprinted without express written consent of its author.  These words also should not be taken to be words that were written or spoken by Thoreau during his lifetime

Excerpt from Thoreau's Wise Silence by Cathryn McIntyre

" There is a boldness to me, a rugged truth that they are unable to relate to.  They want their fine linens, fine dresses, fine homes, comfortable surroundings.  I bristle at the thought of their complacency.  Is there not more to be learned and lived than that which takes place cradling a child round the fire, perpetuating more and more life, and yielding our own to the propulsion of that effort - than to stall the process long enough to reflect and question, where is the value in life anyway?"

"I strive to see and know more than these people of the village do.  They want to follow the narrow path, the path that leads to their familiar homes, to intereact with their familiar friends in familiar conversation on topics they already know, and read stories that reinforce and glorify their style of life."






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