Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Emerson: Every Spirit Builds a House


In his book-length essay of 1836 Nature, Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote:
Every spirit builds itself a house; and beyond its house, a world; and beyond its world, a heaven. Know then, that the world exists for you. For you is the phenomenon perfect. What we are, that only can we see. All that Adam had, all that Caesar could, you have and can do. Adam called his house, heaven and earth; Caesar called his house, Rome; you perhaps call yours, a cobbler’s trade; a hundred acres of ploughed land; or a scholar’s garret. Yet line for line and point for point, your dominion is as great as theirs, though without fine names. Build, therefore, your own world.

2 comments:

  1. Emerson is so unique. Of the hundreds of thousands of sentences he wrote, every damn one of them was an epigram.

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