Transcendentalism By: wyatt buller

Post 1:

Transcendentalism was an idea or movement seen throughout authors during the mid 18th century. There were 4 basic ideas of Transcendentalism and they were individualism, optimism, intuition, and idealism. The ideas of individualism can be seen in the writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson's Nature when he says," To go into solitude, a man must retire as much from his society as from society"( Field ,180). This explains that in order to find your true self a man must leave both society and his materialistic possessions. The transcendental idea of optimism is found in the quote“I wanted to live deep and suck all of the marrow out of life” (Field, 204). Henry Thoreau is taking an optimistic approach to life by stating he is going to live life to the fullest, he is also talking about breaking limits that have been placed on him by society. Ralph Waldo Emerson states," I become a transparent eyeball; I am nothing; I see all"( Field, 181). This quote demonstrates intuition because it is considered to be your sixth sense and he is able to channel this.

Post 2

Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American author who was born in 1803 and died in 1882. Throughout his works, there were four main underlying ideas that were individualism, optimism, self-reliance and intuition. The ideas of individualism are seen in Nature with the quote," To go into solitude, a man must retire as much from his society as from society"( Field ,180). Entering the solitude is how Emerson believes that a person can experience individualism. If you enter solitude this gives you time to reflect and think about yourself and personal beliefs. Emerson is successfully able to demonstrate the ideas of optimism in his writings by describing the stars,“How great they are! . . . every night come out there envoys of beauty, and light the universe with their astonishing smile” (Field, 180). This demonstrates optimism because of Emerson's enthusiastic approach to them. Enthusiasm is positive energy that helps to see the positive side of things which is what optimism is centered around. Intuition is being able to make decisions based off of ones instincts or conscience. " Society everywhere is in conspiracy against the manhood of everyone of its members"(Field,184). Emerson takes the approach of saying the consequences of not being self reliant. He states that if you are essentially apart of society loosing manhood will be a consequence. Intuition is being able to make decisions based on ones conscience or instinct.“A man should learn to detect and watch that gleam of light which flashes across his mind from within, more than the luster of the firmament of bards and sages"(Field, 183). This explains that people should use their internal thoughts and instincts rather than the more obvious actions of society.

Post 3

First came Emerson the Thoraeu

The ideas of Ralph Waldo Emerson were put into practice by a future writer named Henry David Thoreau. Emerson wrote about the ideals of transcendentalism then Thoreau was able to use these writings and apply them to his life. Emerson writes,“To go into solitude, a man needs to retire as much from his chamber as from society” (Field, 180). Thoreau acted upon this quote by leaving his world and living alone for 2 years in a cabin located in the woods. Thoreau later writes,“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived” (Field, 204). Since Thoreau secluded himself, a comparison or mirror can be seen between the ideas between Emerson and Thoreau.

Post 4

Black lives matter is an organization that is fighting for the equal treatment of blacks as everyone else. On the Black Lives Matter the quote,"Black Lives Matter is an ideological and political intervention in a world where Black lives are systematically and intentionally targeted for demise"(Guiding) demonstrates an example of modern civil disobedience because they are "intervening" on what they believe is a corrupt political issue. Henry David Thoreau states," The government itself, which is only the mode which the people have chosen to execute their will, is equally liable to be abused and perverted before the people can act through it"( Field, 212). Thoreau is saying that the very government that was appointed by the people is able to become corrupt and unfair before the people can inflict change. This can be found in the Black Lives Matter organization because they believe that the government is treating them unfair and then created the organization to act on their beliefs. This is also an example of modern civil disobedience because they are following personal beliefs before the laws of the government. There have been protests that have erupted into violent scenes however the people believe that their cause is more important than the laws so they are willing to resort to intense measures to accomplish this.

Post 5

Avatar is a movie in which the people of earth are looking for a new planet to inhabit because earth is too polluted. A former paralyzed marine named Jake Sully uses his avatar to become mobile on the Planet of Pandora. On Pandora he falls in love with a native and this leads to conflict with the humans.

Thesis Statement: The ideas of Transcendentalism are found in the film Avatar through individualism, nature being sacred, and optimism.

"But the great man is he who in the midst of a crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude"(Field,184). The video demonstrates individualism because even in the face of all his previous friends, Jake is going to fight for what he believes in rather than conform with them.

During avatar the army or sky people have threatened with the people of Pandora. Jake Sully attempting to rally the people to fight back states,"You fly now, with me! My brothers! Sisters! And we will show the Sky People(Sully). This is an example of optimism because Jake knows that they are outnumbered however he is choosing to believe that they can win.

Emerson says," Nature never wears a mean appearance. Nor does the wisest man extort her secret, and lose his curiosity by finding out all her perfection. Nature never became a toy to a wise spirit."(Field,180). Emerson is saying that nature is sacred and is always beautiful in some way. He also explains that wise people do not try to change nature for their pleasure and benefit. The people of Pandora praise the Tree of Souls and treat it like the sacred tree that it is.

Works Cited

"Guiding Principals." Black Lives Matter. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2016.

Field, Nancy. Glencoe Literature American Literature: The Reader's Choice. Place of Publication Not Identified: Glencoe Mcgraw-Hill School, 2003. Print.

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