Transcendentalism Pop Culture Project By: Benjamin Montelongo

“Is it so bad then to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood."

- Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Self Reliance"

Adele at 19 would release an album that give her two Grammy's and blast her into number one album on iTunes. Adele born on May 5, 1988 would begin her dream of becoming a singer at the age of 15. She was inspired to bring her soulful voice to the world. Once her Album 19 was released the music industry was changed. Adele coming from nothing was able to rise iTunes number 1 album in 2008. This achievement was possible after a appearance on SNL. Within 24 hours Adele reached number 1 on iTunes. Soon after Adele would receive 2 Grammy's in 2009. With Adele now recognized as award winning singer, ideas began to change.

A video from states how Adele was able to bring nonconformist ideas to the music world by showing how women of any size can be something. During this time Lady Gaga, Madonna, Katy Perry were at the top. Those women's body shape showed more of a slimmer side. On the other hand Adele was more of the curvier body shape. Though with Adele gaining so much fame, it was hard to see how a big women can make it. She proved how with determination and perseverance women of any size can make a mark on the music industry.

Importance of Nature
“In the woods we return to reason and faith. Their I feel that nothing can befall me in life -no disgrace, no calamity….”


As a environmentalist Leonardo DiCaprio learned from a early age that nature is powerful and has so many different dimensions of beauty. DiCaprio has understood that nature is at the core of the world. He believes that nature is a gift. He believes that nature has a powerful purpose in our life. DiCaprio from a early age had a fascination of how nature worked. DiCaprio is so passionate about the environment that in 1998 he established the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation which deals with protecting wildlife and many other serious topics that face the world. Born on November 11, 1974 Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio a young boy with avid dreams. DiCaprio at of 17 would begin his carrier. Though this launch DiCaprio into the field of environment. DiCaprio in a interview would explain how he found the world to be so interesting. He believes that this world is so important and its key to keep the earth clean.

DiCaprio exemplifies this idea of importance of nature. With multiple studies done and his overall study of nature DiCaprio is a man that gives this transcendentalism quality life. DiCaprio has spoken in front of Congress and the UN to stress his concerns of how this world is treating the environment. Just recently in 2016 DiCaprio released a documentary directed by himself focusing on the deterioration of the environment. In conclusion Leonardo DiCaprio gives new life to the life that is dying.

“ A man is relieved and gay when he has put his heart into his work and done his best; but what he has said or done otherwise, shall give him no peace. It is a deliverance which does not deliver."


Bear Grylls is a very over used example of self-reliant though he has so many aspects that fit this quality. Self-reliant comes from being reliant on only yourself and not on others. Grylls a survivalist feeds of that idea of only relying on yourself. With multiple TV series depicting Bear Grylls alone in the middle of tough terrain and must find his way to a detestation point within a certain amount if time under his belt, we see how Bear Grylls could be considered self-reliant. Though there is another aspect to this man. He must not only try to survive, find food, find shelter, protect himself from the dangers, but must also psychology be self-reliant. In a quote from Bear Grylls novel Mud, Sweat and Tears he states, “I learnt another valuable lesson that night: listen to the quiet voice inside. Intuition is the noise of the mind.” This quote covers two qualities of Transcendentalism, though the quality self-reliant shines through. In time when you are alone in a place that you have never in and never seen its hard to think that complex thought. Some or even most people would be thinking of how to get food. Though with Bear Grylls he uses that time to reflect on what he must do with his inner self to survive. In this quote he shows us how Transcendentalism qualities are important even in the most worst of situations. Bear Grylls has dedicated his life to showing others how self-reliance is extremely necessary in a world were people are relying on objects more than themselves.

Favoring Intuition Over Reason
"The invariable mark of wisdom is to see the miraculous in the common.”

-“Nature,” Ralph David Thoreau

To many Donald J Trump is racist, and coward who has manipulated his way into the presidency. Though in many aspects Donald Trump fits into this category. Age 70 Donald Trump has shown the world how he uses his intuition over reasoning throughout his whole life. Donald Trump growing up came from a wealthy family that lived a life pleasures and extra liberties. In 1971 Donald Trump gained complete control of his fathers company which he later changed the name to Trump Organization. From there Donald Trump began to expand on his fathers monopoly. This sudden mass of power would lead Trump to make decisions that would make him trust his intuition. This decision making strategy or quality will continue on throughout his life.

In 2016 during his campaigning Donald Trump made many remarks that many consider inappropriate. Though it has been recorded that Donald Trump believes he makes the best choice of words. It's seen how Donald Trump will blurt anything out that comes to mind whenever he has the chance. To millions this is not a good quality but given in a different situation I believe that this quality would be viewed as good. This idea of favoring intuition over reasoning is a quality of Transcendentalism that to me has many interruptions. A post just recently tweeted by President Trump states," My daughter Ivanka has been treated so unfairly by @Nordstrom. She is a great person -- always pushing me to do the right thing! Terrible!" President Trump used his account to attack Nordstrom to defend his daughter, though for many this shows how now our President continues to use is intuition instead of realizing how this could effect his reputation as President of the United States. In closing we see how Donald Trump with some much to think about, so many reasons to not act like an ignorant person like many view him as he continues to follow or favor his intuition.

Simplified Life
“Our life is frittered away by detail. An honest man has hardly need to count more than his ten fingers, or in extreme cases he may add his ten toes, and lump the rest. Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!”

-Walden, Henry David Thoreau

“Our life is frittered away by detail. An honest man has hardly need to count more than his ten fingers, or in extreme cases he may add his ten toes, and lump the rest. Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!” Walden, Henry David Thoreau when I see this quote I can only imagine farmers. Some may argue that farmers have all the stress in the world. They have to properly maintain their crops. They have to make sure no crops become spoiled. Though if you look at what this quote actual means farmers are the perfect choice. For farmers many of them are hardworking honest men. Who wish to only work and be able to support their family. The want a life a simpleness.

"Prosperous farmers mean more employment, more prosperity for the workers and the business men of every industrial area in the whole country." Proclaimed by Franklin D. Roosevelt, he wants to share of how he believes that farmers are key to prosperous life. Throughout history farmers have shown us that people do not need a lot. Another aspect of farmers is the true honest and dedication they exemplify. The picture chosen is not an ordinary picture. This captures a man with a stick over his back and a rope holding water buckets. To some it would just be something cool, but this models how not just farmer but how a person should live. Live without all the gadgets that society has to offer. Be like this unknown man in the picture. Wear no shoes, do not be reliant on material objects. Living a simplified life is truly the best and most extraordinary object of them all.


Created with images by MNoe - "flower nature plant" • papaya45 - "door field flowers" • AlexKormisPS (ALM) - "Adele [21]" • NASA Goddard Photo and Video - "NASA Airborne Campaigns Focus on Climate Impacts in the Arctic" • NASA Goddard Photo and Video - "Leonardo DiCaprio visited Goddard Saturday to discuss Earth science with Piers Sellers" • Kincse_j - "bird falcon nature" • lwpkommunikacio - "Bear Grylls: Sztárok a vadonban - Barack Obama" • nguyenkhacqui - "watering watering can man"

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