A Friendship

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Man & Nature

Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau met in 1837.  Lucy Brown, who boarded at David Thoreau’s home, was the sister-in-law of Ralph Waldo Emerson. On April 9th, she introduced the two men who were destined to form a lifelong friendship.  Emerson was 34 and Thoreau was a 20-year old Harvard senior.  Both men were to become leaders in the transcendental philosophical movement that sprang up in the 1830’s and 1840’s, which spoke to the connection between man and nature. Perhaps the genesis of frugality comes from differentiating between wants and needs, desires and requirements.

We make ourselves rich by making our wants few.”

Henry David Thoreau

Can anything be so elegant as to have few wants, and to serve them one’s self?” 

Ralph Waldo Emerson

21 thoughts on “A Friendship

    • And thank you for your comments and presence! We must continue to find joy in gentle thoughts.

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  1. Just what I needed to hear this morning! I love the Emerson quote. “Can anything be so elegant as to have few wants, and to serve them one’s self?” How lovely.

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    • He did have a way about him that continues to inspire our thoughts and motives. Thank so much for adding your wisdom!!

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  2. I didn’t realize there was that much difference in their ages. I guess it is not really a big difference, but I often think of them as just two old men.
    I am enjoying friendships with many different ages here in WP.

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    • It is difficult to think of them as young. Can you imagine how interesting it would have been to be their mothers? When everyone was learning their multiplication tables, they wanted to talk about a philosophy that had yet to come into being!!

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    • Thank you so very much for your comments and encouragement. Over the years, I have used a daily quote to focus my energies on the positive. It has helped me to be more thoughtful and disciplined in my decisions. With a quote, I know that someone has faced the same challenges that I have and found a way to celebrate, rather than despair.

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  3. It is for sure, things do not make for happiness, as was so aptly said, we make ourselves rich by having less

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    • A lovely blog!!!! Seeking happiness and a happier life is a life-long pursuit. I like Emily’s manifesto!!! Thank you so much for the link!!!

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