Today, we bring a brief excerpt recorded by AKS from ‘The American Scholar’ of Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 –1882)), the legendary American essayist, lecturer, and poet, who led the Transcendentalist movement of the mid-19th century, and is viewed as a champion of individualism. The introductory lines ofhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_American_Scholar state: ‘The American Scholar was a speech given by Ralph Waldo Emerson on August 31, 1837, to the Phi Beta Kappa Society at Cambridge, Massachusetts. He was invited to speak in recognition of his groundbreaking work Nature, published a year earlier, in which he established a new way for America’s fledgling society to regard the world. Sixty years after declaring independence, American culture was still heavily influenced by Europe, and Emerson, for possibly the first time in the country’s history, provided a visionary philosophical framework for escaping “from under its iron lids” and building a new, distinctly American cultural identity.’–AKSCENTRE
From “The American Scholar” by R.W. Emerson:
The world is his who can see through its pretension. What deafness, what stone-blind custom, what overgrown error you behold is there only by sufferance–by your sufferance. See it to be a lie, and you have already dealt it its mortal blow.
Nor he is great who can alter matter, but who can alter my state of mind.
I ask not for the great, the remote, the romantic; what is doing in Italy or Arabia; I embrace the common, I explore and sit at the feet of the familiar, the low. Give one insight into to-day, and you may have the antique and future worlds.
To read the full essay, ‘The American Scholar’, you can visit this website: http://www.emersoncentral.com/amscholar.htm