More than a century has passed since the day Henry David Thoreau decided to leave the newly industrialized Massachusetts to live in the woods near the Walden pond. At the time of the introduction of steam engines , he decided to build a cottage and enjoy the company of animals.
Revisiting Walden because….
I don’t know what he would have said about our over the top materialistic world of today, but reading Walden and revisiting Thoreau’s experience is really important. In a world that most of its people would feel totally lost without their cell phones, reading Walden and trying to see that true peace of mind is in nature and places unharmed from humans’ destruction.
“To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of art “
The above quote is my favorite quote from Walden. Thoreau would affect the quality of the day by walking through the woods, and contemplating the power of nature (which Transcendentalists view as God). He was a lover of sobriety, as he condemns taking any substance, that would alter the mind. He describes wine as liqueur that is not noble, and asks his readers why they would ruin the freshness of a morning with a hot cup of coffee.
We take for granted all the little things hidden in the nature now, (is there any nature left at all?), we wake up pour some hot coffee on the hopes that a fresh morning can bring, and don’t even notice the seabirds getting along with crows eating breads left of our hamburgers and hot dogs.
Book of Wisdom we Desperately Need to Read
Thoreau has put different sections in the book , such as economy, in which he explains how you could live on a very small amount of money, if we would take care of most of our businesses ourselves. Minimalism is the main point of Walden, the fact that we could have more with having less stuff and material. Thoreau describes fashion as the ploy of the rich, by saying that the head monkey in Paris sets a trend and all the monkeys worldwide would just sheepishly follow him (something that has got out of hand in this day and age).
Don’t you think that the time has come for us to put away what we do not need, stop buying what we do not need, and more importantly appreciate sobriety? (such sobriety that a fresh glass of water would bring). Shouldn’t we make some time to read Walden instead of Wall Street Journal, and try to embrace and find the beauty of having less and the peace of mind it can bring to us?
I would highly recommend this book to anyone tired of his/her mechanized materialistic world, who would want a quick escape into the world of serenity that Walden can bring. I’d put up the audio book as well for those of you, who find reading a bit tiresome. As always I would be more than glad to hear your thoughts about this book, and the other book recommendations I’d put up here.