'walden' by henry david thoreau

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I bought a cool-looking Thoreau book the other day, Faith in a Seed, which is apparently his last manuscript and seems like nature writing.

Epigraph: "Though I do not believe that a plant will spring up where no seed has been, I have great faith in a seed. Convince me that you have a seed there, and I am prepared to expect wonders."

jmm, Friday, 16 October 2015 05:02 (five years ago) link

one year passes...
one year passes...
one year passes...

The comments upthread re: "children seem entirely alien to his mindset" is a very funny thing to say about a schoolteacher! It seems from most accounts he was great with kids, though not having any of his own.

I was reading his journals recently (volume V of the 1906 edition, available for free online) and came across this passage, from the Autobiography of Moncure Daniel Conway, which was reproduced in a footnote under HDT's journal entry for Sunday, August 7, 1853:

I recall an occasion when little Edward Emerson, carrying a basket of ripe huckleberries, had a fall and spilt them all. Great was his distress, and our offers of berries could not console him for the loss of those gathered by himself. But Thoreau came, put his arm around the troubled child, and explained to him that if the crop of huckleberries was to continue it was necessary that some should be scattered. Nature had provided that little boys should now and then stumble and sow the berries. We shall have a grand lot of bushes and berries in this spot, and we shall owe them to you. Edward began to smile.

handsome boy modelling software (bernard snowy), Wednesday, 2 September 2020 14:25 (one month ago) link

So basically he told a whopping lie, but it was effective and therefore admirable.

the unappreciated charisma of cows (Aimless), Wednesday, 2 September 2020 18:06 (one month ago) link

You could say that; or you could say that Thoreau had well absorbed Emerson's teachings (Ralph Waldo, not little Edward) about compensation.

Men suffer all their life long, under the foolish superstition that they can be cheated. But it is as impossible for a man to be cheated by any one but himself, as for a thing to be and not to be at the same time. There is a third silent party to all our bargains. The nature and soul of things takes on itself the guaranty of the fulfilment of every contract, so that honest service cannot come to loss. If you serve an ungrateful master, serve him the more. Put God in your debt. Every stroke shall be repaid. The longer the payment is withholden, the better for you; for compound interest on compound interest is the rate and usage of this exchequer.

handsome boy modelling software (bernard snowy), Wednesday, 2 September 2020 19:33 (one month ago) link

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