Saturday, November 1, 2008

THEME DAY--BOOKS: One of my favorite books

One of my best-loved books is Walden, by Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), American author and philosopher. Walden is a reflection upon simple living in natural surroundings, and simplicity and self-reliance were Thoreau's goals. He made clear in this book that his cabin was not in the wilderness, but at the edge of town, not far from his family home. Mama Thoreau undoubtedly often brought him goodies, but that’s what mothers are for, after all! Thoreau did not intend to live as a hermit, but rather to live at a distance from society in order to raise his awareness of how one's life is lived, materially and otherwise, and how one might choose to live it more deliberately, mindful of the present moment. He put into practice the Transcendentalist belief that one can best transcend normality and experience the Divine through nature. Some say he was the precursor of American Buddhism, since he was perhaps the first American to explore the nontheistic mode of contemplation which is the distinguishing mark of Buddhism. One of my favorite quotes of his is: “Our life is frittered away by detail—simplify, simplify!”

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18 comments:

Tash said...

I love seeing the favorite books, esp. when it's an old treasured paperback. Lovely arrangement. Happy Thm Day!

Louis la Vache said...

"Louis" recalls Thoreau's plaint against the railroad:
"We do not ride upon the railroad. It rides upon us."

MuseSwings said...

I shall simplify this comment; Very nice post!

USelaine said...

A lovely and meaningful presentation it is!

marley said...

Great still life photo for theme day. I like the quote too!

soulbrush said...

when i declutter (either mentally or in my surroundings) it feels so calming...simplify, what a great message, don't know this book...looks good.

Virginia said...

A lovely photo and words to live by , if we only could.
V

Therese said...

A photographer went back to the place and a beautiful book was published by the Thoreau Society.A book we give to our kids when they graduate from HS.
I fully agree with Virginia "If only we could"

Chuck Pefley said...

A nice still life you've created combining the season and theme. Thoreau wouldn't have liked living today in our virtual world where it's all about details. Then again he still has a point. Imagine how much time we'd have for reading and contemplation and gardening if there were no computers in our world. Food for thought :)

Bibi said...

Agreed. I remember reading a humorous email on how to know if you were an email junkie. One criterium was if you checked your email when you got up to use the bathroom at night...I have done that a couple of times... And I know I surf too much. But I do read! I could live in a simple cabin in the woods, but I'd need hot water and an internet connection.... :<)

Webradio said...

It seems hard to read this book... No ?

Have a good day !

Jilly said...

Oh me too, Bibi. I just love Walden. And how beautifully you've created this photograph. Love it. So perfect for today's theme with all the fruits of autumn.

babooshka said...

I like your choice as you've incorporated Bibi into the theme, along with the seasonal touch.

PJ said...

Nicely done Bibi. I love the vintage paperback.

Becky said...

This is a beautifully composed picture. I like the items you chose to surround the book with. It's a great theme day shot. My mother-in-law and sister-in-law visited his cabin on the lake, and said it was a beautiful area. Probably a wonderful place for contemplation and writing.

raf said...

Time for a reread. Just picked up a copy of Walden a month ago at a garage sale. Your post today for our theme inspires me all the more, Bibi. Thank you!

Kris said...

I am also a fan of the book. Well worth a look!

PJA said...

I live a stone's throw from Walden Pond and in fact cross country ski around it in the winter. For about a year now I've been lurking around CDP thinking I might join to show people this part of the world. It is a very rural area near the towns of Concord, Sudbury and Lincoln, MA. Many historical places that were important to the founding of the US. All those authors and deep thinkers and patriotic types.

I almost always find something I connect to you with on your site. I know you ask your readers if you can take a specific picture for them. Well, if you would like a picture of Walden Pond or the area, let me know.