Desert Solitaire Analysis

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Edward Abbey, author of Desert Solitaire, was not a religious man, at least not in the traditional sense. He did not believe in the the traditional Abrahamic deity, or follow any other major beliefs in the world. Rather, he continued his theme of environmentalism, and called himself an “earthiest”. Over the years, he made several compelling statements on his ideas of divinity. Edward Abbey’s quotes on the nature of spirituality effectively highlight the reasoning behind his beliefs, and guide us in finding happiness and success in life. On multiple occasions, Abbey has dubbed himself a “pantheist”, or an “earthiest”. Abbey shows the basis of the words in Desert Solitaire. He said, “Beyond atheism, nontheism. I am not an atheist, but an earthiest. …show more content…
However, regardless if one agrees or disagrees with his assessments, Abbey’s beliefs hold a type of value that everyone can benefit from. From his ideas on religion and the themes shown in Desert Solitaire, Abbey was clearly in favor of appreciating our lives in the moment, and the natural world around us. One of Abbey’s famous quotes, “There is beauty, heartbreaking beauty, everywhere.”, reflects his sentiments on the world. He could look all around an open area, and find value in the most mundane objects. In his mind, all that was natural on Earth was sacred. That is why Abbey has openly resisted government, society, and their transgressions on nature. As a self-described anarchist and fanatic environmentalist, Abbey lived a life of crusading for the wilderness. His perception of the world is one that many could learn from. One doesn’t need to be an atheist, anarchist, or even someone who enjoys the outdoors to benefit from his philosophies. The core of his ideology is taking value in what’s around us in the present, and having a positive outlook. Many people could benefit from translating Abbey’s views on nature to their own lives. Let Abbey’s grounded views on the world be converted to a grander scale, rising to the level of one’s general existence. Life, like nature, has some nasty elements, but by searching for the good in it all, and taking a moment to recognize it, happiness may be brought to oneself. Let Abbey’s main struggle, government encroachment on nature, represent the antagonistic forces in life. Like Abbey, one should defend what they love and believe in with all of their virtue and character. The biggest lesson the take away from Abbey’s teachings is not to appreciate nature, but rather, appreciate life. The time we have on Earth is limited. We should always work to enjoy it, and do something with it. For Abbey, nature drove him. To be truly

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