Essay on if transcendentalism is valid
Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Press enter to begin your search. Student essays on transcendentalism By May 21, Uncategorized. No Comments. Student Essays On Transcendentalism Transcendentalism in Thoreau's Walden The Transcendentalist Movement was a reaction against eighteenth century rationalism and manifestation of the general humanitarian trend of nineteenth century thought.
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The early Transcendental movement was a contribution towards Enlightenment Thinking in the United States. It was the first major movement since the time of the founding fathers and began in the s. Transcendentalism involved religion, philosophy and literature as well as social reform and efforts to influence the general state of American culture. Proponents of the movement focused on knowledge not only from reason but from intuition as well. They also considered nature to be very important in order to achieve self-knowledge. Transcendentalism had different meanings for each person involved in the movement; there were many interpretations among Transcendentalists and because of this it is not easily defined or understood as one certain set of ideals. The impact of the major proponents of the movement including Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau can still be felt today in many ways.
When the Transcendentalists first came on the scene, philosophy was split between two major schools of thought: empiricism and rationalism. Transcendentalism rejected both schools, arguing that they were both too narrow-minded and failed to account for different kinds of transcendence. Philosophy and science should proceed by carefully observing the world, building up a supply of concrete facts, and then analyzing those facts. The best form of reasoning is inductive. The senses only tell us about the physical world, but the most important realities are those that lie beyond the physical world — things that we cannot see, feel, or hear, but must sense through our spirituality.
In the context of American thinking, the transcendentalism refers to the movement that flourished in New England, primarily Massachusetts, in the quarter century before the American Civil War. It never generated a definitive canon of beliefs, but a good explanation can be found in the pamphlet written by Charles Mayo Ellis, An Essay on Transcendentalism , which appeared in The fact that the churches, as such, did not oppose the war, and do not oppose slavery, its continuance, or its extension; nay, that they are often found its apologists and defenders, seldom its opponents; that they not only pervert the sacred books of the Christians to its defence, but wrest the doctrines of Christianity to justify it; the fact that they cannot, certainly do not, correct the particularism of the political parties, the love of wealth in one, of mere majorities in the other; that they know no patriotism not bounded by their country, none coextensive with mankind; that they cannot resist the vice of party spirit—these are real proofs that the church is but the ally of the state in this evil influence. About Quizzes.