Ralph Waldo Emerson Individualism Analysis

1380 Words 6 Pages
I remember when I was about 9 years old, learning any subject that came my way eagerly in elementary school and one day we took a look at birds. Like many of my classmates I was shocked to hear how some birds would forcefully push their baby birds out of their nest, so they would learn to fly. They would either get the hang of it while falling through the air or they would hit the ground. I did not know just how similar my fate would be, but unlike mine, most of my classmates’ lives would be very different. Their parents would buy them all they wanted, take care of them from head to toe. They would buy them the newest gadgets and toys. In return, these kids would yell at them whenever they didn’t get their way. Their parents would drive them …show more content…
“Individualism is a belief in the primary importance of the individual and in the virtues of self-reliance and personal independence.” Emerson’s beliefs in this is evident from the first line, “Ne te quaesiveris extra,” which roughly translates to “Do not seek outside yourself, Look within.” This is a recurring theme throughout the essay. Ralph Waldo Emerson was of the mind that everybody should seek their own way in life and avoid conformity at all cost. He writes, “To believe your own thought, to believe that what is true for you in your private heart is true for all men,— that is genius.” He believed in the infinitude of the individual and that inside each and every person is a genius. Here we see how this is an American mindset. There is not blending in, it is all about the individual to go out and seek the life the individual wants and individual needs. Emerson thought that society when not kept in check is something that actually degrades our own person. He said “Society everywhere is in conspiracy against the manhood of every one of its members” and “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds…” Emerson really did think that anybody who believed what other people tell him or her to believe is foolish. Everyone needs to go out and find their own way and trust their thought even more than the thought of any wise …show more content…
First, you must assume responsibility. Taking responsibility gives you a sense of empowerment. The confidence that you are capable of shaping yourself, your life and the people close to you in your and their favor. Even when you are dealing with things outside your control, you trust in your faculties, you just know, whatever life throws at you, you’re prepared and you’re going to figure something out. When you fault someone else, you reject owning up to the situation, you expect someone else, who probably couldn’t care less, to solve the problem. Most of the times they won’t, because they don’t assume responsibility, and that makes them a weak-minded person. So to me, self-reliance is taking full ownership and you believe and feel what you have done was the right thing to

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