Summarizing Thoreau’s “Walking”

Thoreau’s “walking” defines how ones walk can be best spent, walking he concludes is best spent traversing nature. According to Thoreau walking is not something easily done and should not be undertaken by those who don’t have time on their hands such as someone suffering debt. Thoreau argues that the legs are meant to be used so confining them to spaces and daily routines is a waste. It is not enough to walk but certain things need to happen whilst walking, one as to have thoughts only suited for the woods. The vices of men such as roads are to be blame once again for impeding on the scholars connection to nature. The individual and civilization as they are now cannot be apart of an enjoy nature as there are so many distractions only through being in a pure wilderness can man truly appreciate nature. This is Thoreau’s wish, to have his fellow men experience nature in its purest form. That which is wild is best because they gain their influence from nature and that which is natural trumps all things man made for it is not tainted. Thoreau denounces the culture of man in that he believes it not moving men forward but backward. This can be seen with example of the wolf and how the people of the wild suckled by said wolf beat those more civilized.


Reflecting on a Sonata

The second sonata conducted by Charles Ives starts of peaceful and then goes into this merry upbuilding followed by calm once again. Similar to a voyage at see where there is calm before a storm, everyone is frantically preparing, there are colossal waves through which you survive on surviving everything reverts back to what they were before said storm. There are many different emotions thrown into the second senata   we have the classic approach, then you have a marching band esque sound which throws off the soothing beginning only to be followed with another calming sequence. The second sonata is very frantic and sort of reminds of someone  or something that is paranoid or schizophranic. This changing of tones is very comical and would otherwise be missed if was not informed during a class session. Comical in that there are american influenced sounds that are cartoonish and very traditional such as a marching band esque way of playing a melody, the loudest and most ecstatic sounds american and the more subdued british.

Charles Ives: Essay Before a Sonata

Charles, views Thoreau’s natural ability to observe as an uncanny tool that makes Thoreau a natural musician. Charles ives mentions that he even observes things that had nothing to do with his interest. Thoreau was not a musician in the  sense that he played an instrument but how he was able to notice things in nature, similar to how a composer notices things in music. Thoreau was and is not essentially as well known as other famous men because of his habit to want recluse, seeking seclusion from men. By staying in the confounds of society one becomes materialistic, Thoreau sought seclusion to get closer to nature as well as escape the consumerist and capitalistic endeavors that comes with remaining a part of society. Through Thoreau’s writing he is not secluded however as the reader is invited into a world where essentially they are able to see the good in his seclusion and make a decision as to if they want to take steps toward a life of spiritual enlightenment. Charles ives is able to further nail home is point of how great of a man Thoreau was with his quote “the Godness of man; have been greater if he hadn’t written plays. Some say that a true composer will never write an opera because a truly brave man will not take a drink to keep up his courage;.in fact, it is an attempt to say that many novels, most operas, all Shakespeares, and all brave men and women (rum or no rum) are among the noblest blessings with which God has endowed mankind — because, not being perfect, they are perfect examples pointing to that perfection which nothing yet has attained”. This is Charles ode to Thoreau and all intellectual thinkers who seek knowledge yes they are not perfect in that though they write properties of intellectuality in doing this they are essentially not writing to preserve spirituality but to remind themselves of their work, a sort of self indulgence. They are non the less great because they are humans who are unique and who don’t think like the common man speaking universally through there writings and guiding the individual, the use of shakespeare’s proves such a point as his work is universally known. 

Summarizing Thoreau’s “Autumnal Tints”

Thoreau’s “autumnal Tints” celebrates something in nature that humans in their simple minded ways over look, this being the change that occurs to trees in the month of october and november. Thoreau attributes this ignorance of man to be due to a carnivorous life style. Humans, Thoreau feels do not appreciate the beauty in plants unless they are beneficial to them such can be seen with his purple grass example he constantly refers to man overlooking said grass, referring to man as walkers who destroy said grass by use of feet or lawnmower. Thoreau also uses himself as an example speaking of the many seasons which he himself neglected to notice the beauty of the grasses surrounding him. The essay uses descriptions of various plants and grass to draw attention to what emerson feels is seen as dull through the unenlightened humans eyes. The processes that happen to plants at different stages of the fall is laid out so the individual   is no longer blinded like Thoreau once was before realizing the beauty in plants. The individual is left to feel for the plants which are not appreciated through Thoreau giving them human characteristics referring to plants as soldiers crossing their arms standing at attention or as voyagers taking a journey with him.

Midnight walking Observations

Taking a walk in the night is different from that of walking in the day, things change but nature stays the same. Things such as the human senses are heightened, one can say man becomes more in-tuned with nature during the night. Technology plays a different role at night, light post and other artificial forms of  light become very important as they improve the sight of humans who have long strayed away from nature. The human senses of hearing and smell are also heightened by the darkness. Those senses which are used in everyday life but are used less by the technology of men. While walking from main to south at 10 in the night, the senses were alive. The leaves which did not smell in the morning raked in there semi neat piles emitted an odor that was not noticeable in the morning.  The chirping of animals and the rustling of trees became more noticeable at night. The cemetery located on the way to south is more secluded at night than in the day. One thinks of the cemetery as a place reserved for mourning but at night the seclusions of the cemetery is not only limited because of mourning but because it feels alive. Going back to technology as stated earlier one may say humans depend on the modern inventions of self to ward of the senses offered by nature though it is a exhilarating experience being aware and having ones wits about you, it is also a scary experience. By this i mean paranoia or cautiousness that comes from seclusion should not be mistaken for enlightenment of any kind but instead should be viewed as protection from the unknown which is the darkness of the knight.

Summarizing Thoreau’s “Solitude”

     The narrator Thoreau is fascinated by nature and how ones senses as well as ones serenity can be affected by nature. The human experience with nature is that of a relationship, nature acts on its own and man as to appreciate the things that nature does naturally, such as rain. Thoreau can be linked to Emerson’s nature in that they both think that man who are savage become more enlightened and lose bad habits that comes with living in society. Nature takes away the need to be around other humans, the complex called loneliness which is created by the neighborhood is negated because in nature, all one has to do is return to their natural self. This natural self is not dependant on unnatural things but instead the simplicity of their setting. He constantly describes norms of the city with the natural in order to get his point across that being involved with nature is essentially finding peace and peace is thus found through seclusion of self from unearthly things. Like emerson he believes that the love of nature is for the wise man who can appreciate natures many habit. This notion is backed up through his initial annoyance with the rain but through being in the forest secluded from technology which blinds the senses of men, he is able to appreciate nature, as not a inconvenience but a necessity. The individual Thoreau continues allow not natural circumstances to sway the way in which we live but outliers such as vanity. This he proclaim is not natural thinking but thinking generated by conditioning from other men. Similar to Emerson’s Nature Thoreau is fascinated by the ambiguity of Nature and how unknowingly men is drawn to worshipping nature in some shape or form. The human he proclaims his two people the self may be unaware but the natural instinct born in all things of earth offers a different perspective, this can explain why man when secluded revert back to such a self. Solitude is thus not physical space but is the individual withdrawing into self tuning the world out. Loneliness is not of the mind, isolation makes the individual realize like nature, that, loneliness is only a state of mind. Thoreau wishes not to be the destroyer of  nature but instead be the worshipper of the elements which naturally brings life. 

Summarizing Emerson’s Nature

Emerson’s Nature deals with the evolution of man, from seemingly insignificant worms or microscopic organisms to what we are today. Emerson considers everything in nature as having a role none significant than the other, this goes back to the worm though seemingly insignificant it has its own routine in nature. Evolution is unavoidable and the role things in nature play is not unknown but is always defined. Emerson believes that humans focus on histories and theories of the past instead of the present, this is not good because the mysteries of the universe remain unsolved according to emerson as stated in his poem about omens everything is predetermined and humans need not worry about the future but on the present. In the present we are able to explore and  find answers. Nature is a wonder in that humans can speculate in its mysteries but yet not know its secrets the more the individual focuses on nature the more in-tune they become. Nature never changes there is no such thing as a good day or a bad day, humans however distort nature with holidays if the individual was to be more conscious of nature they would enjoy life more. The inventions of man makes them something else not what nature intended, when man returns to the scenery of the outdoors however he is changed. Emerson questions whether the inventions man created is beneficial to man or holds back is natural state which makes him beautiful. everything is connected to nature, words are  variations of things associated with nature. Thus ones connection to nature is a reflection of good or bad. Writing and all things is thus the same, the quality  of work that a person puts out his based on experience. Good work or the good things associate with study are based on nature.  Nature is based on observation and experience thus all human fields of study is dependent on Nature which is the natural. The proof of natures dominance is in things such as religion which is in essence based on the mysteries of nature as being unknown.