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David Thoreau: Economy Essay

767 words - 4 pages

Philosophy of LifeIn "On Economy" Henry David Thoreau is a naturalist, one who is able to be one with nature. Thoreau is very descriptive in what he does. He describes every detail as he is building, as he rests, and as he goes on in life. It is almost as if this story is strictly a descriptive essay. Thoreau goes into great detail trying to describe everything he does. Through him being so specific and descriptive you get a better look at his values and morals. Through the "On Economy" you can tell the Thoreau compares men's actions to things of nature to show his values. Also, he talks about building from the cornice down to the foundation and not the foundation up. Finally,"I saw a striped snake run into the water, and he lay on the bottom, apparently without inconvenience, as long as I stayed there, or more than a quarter of an hour; perhaps because he had not yet fairly come out of the torpid state."(Page 228, paragraph 1). Here, ...view middle of the document...

When he talks about man and the style of architecture, he is saying that ultimately we have no say so in how things are going to end up, and how things are going to play out until they play out. Thoreau is saying you can starting with nothing and making it your own by watching it and sculpting it with your own ideas, but it may not end up looking like what you thought it would. "But a man has no more to do with the style of architecture of his house than a tortoise with that of its shell: nor need the soldier be so idle as to try and paint the precise color of his virtue on his standard. The enemy will find it out." (Page 231 Parag. 2) He is basically saying do not worry about anything because whatever that is suppose to happen is going to happen and we have no control over it.Another value or way of life Thoreau talks about is simplicity. He wants things simple. He wants things in life simple but at the same time he wants the luxuries of this world. How we know that Thoreau wants simplicity in life and is when he states,"The most interesting dwellings in this country, as the painter knows, are the most unpretending, humble log huts and cottages of the poor commonly; it is the life of the inhabitants whose shells they are, and not any peculiarity in their surfaces merely, which makes them picturesque; and equally interesting will be the citizens' suburban box, when his life shall be as simple and as agreeable to the imagination, and there is as little straining effect in the style of his dwellings" (Page231, Parag 2)And as he says to have things in life simple he goes on and talks about how he wishes she could go above and beyond with his house. "I intend to build me a house which will Parag.2). I think that Thoreau wants the thing of high ritzy people, but he does not want to have to put up with all the life problems that come with being rich and luxurious. He wants life to be carefree and simplistic. He has already got the concept that whatever happens is going to happen whether or not he wants it to. Life will play out the way it is suppose to and the way it was planned and we cannot do anything to change it. The only thing we can do is somehow change the time something might happen.

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