The Self Reliance : Emerson 's Poem, Song Of Myself, By David Emerson

730 Words Nov 9th, 2015 3 Pages
In Self Reliance, Emerson encourages his readers to basically follow their own path, to be yourself, and that being an individual is okay. Emerson’s idea about individualism is also similar to Whitman’s because they were Transcendentalists. This prompt from Self Reliance is significant because it basically summarizes all of his thoughts as a Transcendentalist. He makes it known that we need to understand how important our thoughts are rather than being influenced by others by saying “A man should learn to detect and watch that gleam of light which flashes across his mind from within, more than the luster of the firmament of bards and sages.” He is informing us that we all have a brain and intelligent thoughts but do not use them to their fullest potential. Emerson says “In every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts: they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty” which is his way of saying that we don’t understand the potential of our thoughts until someone else thinks the same way.
In Whitman’s poem, Song of Myself, a quick summary would be that he basically is saying that we should all celebrate ourselves and our individualism. He was a Transcendentalist, along with Emerson, who believed that people were at their best when they were themselves and not influenced by religion and other kinds of interferences from society. But even though he mentions the greatness of every person’s individualism, he also feels it is important to remember that we are…

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