The philosophy and poetry and religion of such a mankind are not worth the dust of a puffball.—"Life without Principle"
The poet says the proper study of mankind is man. I say study to forget all that—take wider views of the universe.—Journal, 2 April 1852
There is no such thing as pure objective observation. Your observation, to be interesting, i.e. to be significant, must be subjective.—Journal, 6 May 1854
This life we live is a strange dream, and I don't believe at all any account men give of it.—Thoreau to Mrs. Cynthia (Dunbar) Thoreau, 6 August 1843
To live in relations of truth and sincerity with men is to dwell in a frontier country.—Journal, 12 January 1852
To the thinker, all institutions of men, as all imperfection, viewed from the point of equanimity, are legitimate subjects of humor.—"Thomas Carlyle and His Works"
Virtue is incalculable, as it is inestimable. Well, man's destiny is but virtue, or manhood. It is wholly moral, to be learned only by the life of the soul.—Journal, 3 April 1842
We occasionally meet an individual of a character and disposition so entirely the reverse of our own that we wonder if he can indeed be another man like ourselves. We doubt if we ever could draw any nearer to him, and understand him.—Journal, 7 May 1838
What is Nature unless there is an eventful human life passing within her?—Journal, 2 November 1853
What is the value of his esteem who does not justly esteem another?—Journal, 15 February 1851
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