There are two world, the post-office and nature. I know them both.—Journal, 3 January 1853
There can be no very black melancholy to him who lives in the midst of nature and has his sense still.—Walden
There is no law so strong which a little gladness may not transgress. Pile up your books, the records of sadness, your saws and your laws. Nature is glad outside, and her merry worms within will ere long topple them down.—Journal, 3 January 1853
Thus a man shall lead his life away from here on the edge of the wilderness, in Indian Millinocket stream, in a new world, far in the dark of a continent, and have a flute to play at evening here, while his strains echo to the stars, amid the howling of wolves; shall live, as it were, in the primitive age of the world, a primitive man.—The Maine Woods
To us snow and cold seem a mere delaying of the spring. How far we are from understanding the value of these things in the economy of Nature!—Journal, 8 March 1859
Very few men can speak of Nature with any truth. They confer no favor; they do not speak a good word for her.—Journal, 7-10 March 1841
We boast of our system of education, but why stop at schoolmasters and schoolhouses? We are all schoolmasters, and our schoolhouse is the universe. To attend chiefly to the desk or schoolhouse while we neglect the scenery in which it is placed is absurd. If we do not look out we shall find our find schoolhouse standing in a cow-yard at last.—Journal, 15 October 1859
We might so simplify the rules of moral philosophy, as well as of arithmetic, that one formula would express them both. All the moral laws are readily translated into natural philosophy, for often we have only to restore the primitive meaning of the words by which they are expressed, or to attend to their literal instead of their metaphorical sense. They are already supernatural philosophy.—A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
We rowed leisurely up the stream for several hours, until the sun had got high in the sky, our thoughts monotonously beating time to our oars. For outward variety there was only the river and the receding shores, a vista continually opening behind and closing before us, as we sat with our backs up-stream; and, for inward, such thoughts as the muses grudgingly lent us.—A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
We should read history as little critically as we consider the landscape, and be more interested by the atmospheric tints and various lights and shades which the intervening spaces create, than by its groundwork and composition. It is the morning now turned evening and seen in the west,—the same sun, but a new light and atmosphere. Its beauty is like the sunset; not a fresco painting on a wall, flat and bounded, but atmospheric and roving or free.—A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
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